Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Exploring modern Theravāda interpretations of the Buddha's teaching.
SarathW
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Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by SarathW » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:12 pm

Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Is this the support for the story that Buddha's alms bowel went up word the Ganges river?

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Sam Vara
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:28 pm

If you are referring to the story immediately before the Buddha's awakening, wasn't this the Neranjara River rather than the Ganges - of which it is a minor tributory?

SarathW
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by SarathW » Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:14 pm

wasn't this the Neranjara River
That's right. Thanks.
I am just wondering this is just a natural up flowing of Neranjara river.
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by chownah » Sun Dec 31, 2017 4:38 am

How far did it go upstream?....a few centimeters?
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by Dhammanando » Sun Dec 31, 2017 5:39 am

SarathW wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:14 pm
wasn't this the Neranjara River
That's right. Thanks.
I am just wondering this is just a natural up flowing of Neranjara river.
Of course not. It's an abbhutadhamma or miracle story. It would hardly have been worth reporting if the dish had just acted normally and floated in the direction one would expect it to float.


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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by Dhammanando » Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:29 am

chownah wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 4:38 am
How far did it go upstream?....a few centimeters?
80 cubits.
But when the Bodhisatta had finished eating that milk-rice, he took the golden vessel, and said: “If I shall be able to-day to become a Buddha, let this pot go up the stream; if not, let it go down the stream!” and he threw it into the water. And it went, in spite of the stream, eighty cubits up the river in the middle of the stream, all the way as quickly as a fleet horse. And diving into a whirlpool it went to the palace of Kāḷa Nāgarāja (the Black Snake King); and striking against the bowls from which the three previous Buddhas had eaten, it made them sound “Killi killi!” and stopped as the lowest of them. Kāḷa, the Snake King, hearing the noise, exclaimed: “Yesterday a Buddha arose, now to-day another has arisen,” and he stood praising him in many hundred stanzas.
(Nidānakathā, tr. Th. Rhys Davids pp. 187-8)
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by chownah » Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:58 am

Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:29 am
chownah wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 4:38 am
How far did it go upstream?....a few centimeters?
80 cubits.
But when the Bodhisatta had finished eating that milk-rice, he took the golden vessel, and said: “If I shall be able to-day to become a Buddha, let this pot go up the stream; if not, let it go down the stream!” and he threw it into the water. And it went, in spite of the stream, eighty cubits up the river in the middle of the stream, all the way as quickly as a fleet horse. And diving into a whirlpool it went to the palace of Kāḷa Nāgarāja (the Black Snake King); and striking against the bowls from which the three previous Buddhas had eaten, it made them sound “Killi killi!” and stopped as the lowest of them. Kāḷa, the Snake King, hearing the noise, exclaimed: “Yesterday a Buddha arose, now to-day another has arisen,” and he stood praising him in many hundred stanzas.
(Nidānakathā, tr. Th. Rhys Davids pp. 187-8)
Well this explains it very clearly....there is a very large drain under the river and it can be opened and closed from the palace of kala nagaraja. The drain is so large that it not only drains the flow from upstream it also drains the flow from down stream obviously for a distance of at least 80 cubits. Someone opened that drain and the bowl was drawn along with the water moving towards and into the wirlpool created by the water going down the drain.....sort of like a rubber ducky being drawn towards the drain hole when one drains the bathtub.
chownah P.E.

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by SarathW » Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:42 am

he took the golden vessel, and said: “If I shall be able to-day to become a Buddha, let this pot go up the stream; if not, let it go down the stream!”
Isn't this practicing rites and rituals?
This sounds very un-Buddhist.
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by Dhammanando » Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:20 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:42 am
Isn't this practicing rites and rituals?
What the Buddha problematised wasn't rites and rituals but misapprehension of them. It's the parāmāsa in sīlabbata-parāmāsa that's the flaw, not the sīla or the vata.

Sīlabbata-parāmāsa would be floating one's dish in the stream thinking: "By this performance there will be attainment of purity for me."
SarathW wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:42 am
This sounds very un-Buddhist.
The power of augury operating via dhammaniyāma, prophetic dreams, earthquakes occurring at pivotally auspicious moments, marvels wrought by saccakiriyās, etc. are all impeccably Buddhist, even if they happen not to find favour with protestant Buddhists of the drearily modernist sort.
On retreat and offline May 22 - July 10.

„Sedem solitariam, cubitum solitarium
solitarius colens non segnis,
solitarius semet ipse domans
in sylva extrema delectatus sit.“

(Dhammapada 305. tr. Viggo Fausbøll. 1855)

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by binocular » Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:39 am

Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:20 am
The power of augury operating via dhammaniyāma, prophetic dreams, earthquakes occurring at pivotally auspicious moments, marvels wrought by saccakiriyās, etc. are all impeccably Buddhist, even if they happen not to find favour with protestant Buddhists of the drearily modernist sort.
In other words, the traditional Buddhist world is far more alive than what some modernist Buddhists give it credit for.

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by SarathW » Sun Dec 31, 2017 12:58 pm

even if they happen not to find favour with protestant Buddhists of the drearily modernist sort.
When I was young I used to through coconut to a target to find whether I am going to be first in my class.
That is why I thought this sort of rituals is childish.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by chownah » Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:26 pm

binocular wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:39 am
Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:20 am
The power of augury operating via dhammaniyāma, prophetic dreams, earthquakes occurring at pivotally auspicious moments, marvels wrought by saccakiriyās, etc. are all impeccably Buddhist, even if they happen not to find favour with protestant Buddhists of the drearily modernist sort.
In other words, the traditional Buddhist world is far more alive than what some modernist Buddhists give it credit for.
Sure.....the traditional buddhist world is full of ghosts of all sorts.....and all sorts of magical things that can help you out in life....my mother in law showed me if on an occasion which honors yourself you receive a certain type of ornate floral assemblage and you receive some money how you can hold the money in your right hand and move it in a circular motion above the floral assemblage and this will bring you more money in your life.......she also warned me not to go down to the river at night because of the ghosts.....
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by binocular » Mon Jan 01, 2018 3:36 pm

chownah wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:26 pm
Sure.....the traditional buddhist world is full of ghosts of all sorts.....and all sorts of magical things that can help you out in life....my mother in law showed me if on an occasion which honors yourself you receive a certain type of ornate floral assemblage and you receive some money how you can hold the money in your right hand and move it in a circular motion above the floral assemblage and this will bring you more money in your life.......
Which means that one is supposed to have the right attitude toward money, to have a kind of reverence for it; and reverence has to be expressed somehow. Nothing problematic about that.
she also warned me not to go down to the river at night because of the ghosts.....
For example: I have heard that the standard advice for when one is being visited by a ghost is to send it to an accomplished practitioner. I apply it. My father sometimes has nightmares in which he speaks in his sleep. Usually, he's being tormented by someone and he is crying out "Let me go!" I go to his room and I ask the ghost to go to Ajahn Lee, for example. It works. Without waking, my father calms down and goes back to sleep. Otherwise, the nightmares continue and I can't stop them unless I forcibly wake my father up; upon which he is very distressed.

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by chownah » Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:19 am

binocular wrote:
Mon Jan 01, 2018 3:36 pm
chownah wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:26 pm
Sure.....the traditional buddhist world is full of ghosts of all sorts.....and all sorts of magical things that can help you out in life....my mother in law showed me if on an occasion which honors yourself you receive a certain type of ornate floral assemblage and you receive some money how you can hold the money in your right hand and move it in a circular motion above the floral assemblage and this will bring you more money in your life.......
Which means that one is supposed to have the right attitude toward money, to have a kind of reverence for it; and reverence has to be expressed somehow. Nothing problematic about that.
It really is remarkable that you seem to think that you understand what my thai mother in law was teaching me and her attitudes toward money.......you must be clairvoyant in the extreme since you don't know who I am or who my thai mother in law was.......but I guess you know better than me..... :buddha2:

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by binocular » Tue Jan 02, 2018 8:44 am

chownah wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:19 am
It really is remarkable that you seem to think that you understand what my thai mother in law was teaching me and her attitudes toward money.......you must be clairvoyant in the extreme since you don't know who I am or who my thai mother in law was.......but I guess you know better than me.....
People who are into science seem to have the most intense penchant for superstition ...

chownah
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by chownah » Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:10 pm

binocular wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 8:44 am
chownah wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:19 am
It really is remarkable that you seem to think that you understand what my thai mother in law was teaching me and her attitudes toward money.......you must be clairvoyant in the extreme since you don't know who I am or who my thai mother in law was.......but I guess you know better than me.....
People who are into science seem to have the most intense penchant for superstition ...
I don't know what this has to do with what I am talking about but it is certainly a new idea to me.....do you have any reference which supports it?
chownah

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by binocular » Tue Jan 02, 2018 4:48 pm

chownah wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:10 pm
I don't know what this has to do with what I am talking about but it is certainly a new idea to me.....do you have any reference which supports it?
I'm speaking from experience. It's people who are into science that seem likely to interpret a ritual as superstitious and to miss out on some vital part of the ritual.

For example, there is a ritual for how to treat sacred objects, such as books of scripture in case one drops them to the ground: one is supposed to pick the item up, lift it to one's forehead, say a prayer (this can be found in different religions, with some variations). I have noticed that it is the scientifically minded people who think this is silly and superstitious. They seem to miss out on the part that sacred objects should be shown proper respect because one relies on them for one's spiritual progress (and that allowing a book of scripture to fall to the ground is a sign of spiritual carelessness).

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by chownah » Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:51 am

binocular wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 4:48 pm
chownah wrote:
Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:10 pm
I don't know what this has to do with what I am talking about but it is certainly a new idea to me.....do you have any reference which supports it?
I'm speaking from experience. It's people who are into science that seem likely to interpret a ritual as superstitious and to miss out on some vital part of the ritual.

For example, there is a ritual for how to treat sacred objects, such as books of scripture in case one drops them to the ground: one is supposed to pick the item up, lift it to one's forehead, say a prayer (this can be found in different religions, with some variations). I have noticed that it is the scientifically minded people who think this is silly and superstitious. They seem to miss out on the part that sacred objects should be shown proper respect because one relies on them for one's spiritual progress (and that allowing a book of scripture to fall to the ground is a sign of spiritual carelessness).
Oh, good. Now I understand. I know that english is not your first language....when you say "People who are into science seem to have the most intense penchant for superstition ..." it is usually taken to mean that scientists are superstitious.
Thanks for the clarification.
Now, can you explain what this has to do with what I was talking about?
chownah

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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by SarathW » Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:16 am

When I was young my mother insist that I bow down and prostrate to my school books!!
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Re: Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?

Post by No_Mind » Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:06 am

SarathW wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:12 pm
Is Ganges river back flow in Varanasi?
Addressing the original question .. in places the Ganges which usually flows in southeasterly direction turns north or northerly for few miles, and that stretch is considered auspicious among Hindus.

The holy places where it does so are Haridwar and Varanasi and the not so famous places are Barh and Bhagalpur.

P.S - When you watch a documentary like the one above .. always remember you are hearing from one scholar or priest of one sect of Hindus. There are many views. All Hindus do not consider dying in Varanasi to be free ticket to heaven. I do not know why documentaries about Hinduism do not carry this caveat.

:namaste:

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