Aggregate?

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daverupa
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by daverupa » Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:02 pm

Now, my understanding is that nibbana is the cessation of upadana, not the cessation of khanda - that'd be parinibbana.

So I am confused by the description "stop functioning" in the quote, above. The Venerable seems to equate khanda with dukkha, such that the cessation of one is the cessation of the other. But we know that clinging is the fetter, delight is the fetter, not the aggregate, yes?

Is this related to the idea that perception-feeling-cessation is a requisite stop on the way to nibbana? Or something else?
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

Dinsdale
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Dinsdale » Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:56 pm

daverupa wrote:Now, my understanding is that nibbana is the cessation of upadana, not the cessation of khanda - that'd be parinibbana.
So I am confused by the description "stop functioning" in the quote, above. The Venerable seems to equate khanda with dukkha, such that the cessation of one is the cessation of the other. But we know that clinging is the fetter, delight is the fetter, not the aggregate, yes?
Is this related to the idea that perception-feeling-cessation is a requisite stop on the way to nibbana? Or something else?
I'm guessing that the Venerable is discussing parinibbana above, but it's not really clear.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

Nyana
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Nyana » Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:02 pm

daverupa wrote:Now, my understanding is that nibbana is the cessation of upadana, not the cessation of khanda - that'd be parinibbana.

So I am confused by the description "stop functioning" in the quote, above. The Venerable seems to equate khanda with dukkha, such that the cessation of one is the cessation of the other. But we know that clinging is the fetter, delight is the fetter, not the aggregate, yes?
Yeah, this kind of mistaken view that the realization of the third noble truth requires the temporary cessation of the mind is not uncommon in Theravāda circles these days. But in fact, the classical Theravāda ācariyas never accepted this notion.

vinasp
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by vinasp » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:20 pm

Hi everyone,

"Good, good, bhikkhu! These three feelings have been spoken of by me: pleasant
feeling, painful feeling, neither-painful-nor-pleasant feeling. These three
feelings have been spoken of by me. And I have also said: 'Whatever is felt is
included in suffering.' That has been stated by me with reference to the
impermanence of formations. That has been stated by me with reference to
formations being subject to destruction ... to formations being subject to
vanishing ... to formations being subject to fading away ... to formations being
subject to cessation ... to formations being subject to change."

[Bhikkhu Bodhi, Connected Discourses, page 1271, part of SN 36.11]

So, even pleasant feeling is suffering. And the only way that suffering can end
is through the complete and permanent cessation of all three feelings.

Regards, Vincent.

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Ron-The-Elder » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:30 pm

Ñāṇa: "Yeah, this kind of mistaken view that the realization of the third noble truth requires the temporary cessation of the mind is not uncommon in Theravāda circles these days. But in fact, the classical Theravāda ācariyas never accepted this notion."
Thank you, Ven., but which "mind" are we referencing and in which context?
Overlapping Pali terms for mind
According to Bhikkhu Bodhi, the post-canonical Pali commentary uses the three terms viññāṇa, mano and citta as synonyms for the mind sense base (mana-ayatana); however, in the Sutta Pitaka, these three terms are generally contextualized differently:
Viññāṇa refers to awareness through a specific internal sense base, that is, through the eye, ear, nose, tongue, body or mind. Thus, there are six sense-specific types of Viññāṇa. It is also the basis for personal continuity within and across lives.
Manas refers to mental "actions" (kamma), as opposed to those actions that are physical or verbal. It is also the sixth internal sense base (ayatana), that is, the "mind base," cognizing mental sensa (dhammā) as well as sensory information from the physical sense bases.
Citta includes the formation of thought, emotion and volition; this is thus the subject of Buddhist mental development (bhava), the mechanism for release.[36]
The citta is called "luminous" in A.I.8-10.[37]

source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vij%C3%B1%C4%81na" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Nyana
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Nyana » Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:16 pm

Ron-The-Elder wrote:
Ñāṇa: "Yeah, this kind of mistaken view that the realization of the third noble truth requires the temporary cessation of the mind is not uncommon in Theravāda circles these days. But in fact, the classical Theravāda ācariyas never accepted this notion."
Thank you, Ven.,
I'm not a "Ven.," Ron.
Ron-The-Elder wrote:but which "mind" are we referencing and in which context?
In the case of an arahant attaining the noble path & fruition, it doesn't matter which mind model we use to represent the congitive series, the sixth consciousness is always present in these instances.

For the commentarial version of the path and fruition cognitive series, see The Path of Purification, Chapter 22, pp. 701-707 (PDF edition).

For an overview of the same, see The Seven Stages of Purification and the Insight Knowledges, p. 137.

:buddha1:

Dinsdale
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Dinsdale » Fri Aug 17, 2012 8:15 am

vinasp wrote: So, even pleasant feeling is suffering. And the only way that suffering can end
is through the complete and permanent cessation of all three feelings..
Do you mean the permanent cessation of vedana? Doesn't that only happen at pari-nibbana?
Buddha save me from new-agers!

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reflection
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by reflection » Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:24 am

daverupa wrote:Now, my understanding is that nibbana is the cessation of upadana, not the cessation of khanda - that'd be parinibbana.

So I am confused by the description "stop functioning" in the quote, above. The Venerable seems to equate khanda with dukkha, such that the cessation of one is the cessation of the other. But we know that clinging is the fetter, delight is the fetter, not the aggregate, yes?

Is this related to the idea that perception-feeling-cessation is a requisite stop on the way to nibbana? Or something else?
There is permanent and temporary cessation of the aggregates. The permanent is the parinibbana, the impermanent is seeing nibbana. This is the 'rise and fall' of the aggregates. And yes, clinging is the fetter, but the aggregates are the dukkha. So to understand what is not dukkha is to see beyond the aggregates.

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Ron-The-Elder » Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:48 am

Ñāṇa wrote:
Ron-The-Elder wrote:
Ñāṇa: "Yeah, this kind of mistaken view that the realization of the third noble truth requires the temporary cessation of the mind is not uncommon in Theravāda circles these days. But in fact, the classical Theravāda ācariyas never accepted this notion."
Thank you, Ven.,
I'm not a "Ven.," Ron.
Ron-The-Elder wrote:but which "mind" are we referencing and in which context?
In the case of an arahant attaining the noble path & fruition, it doesn't matter which mind model we use to represent the congitive series, the sixth consciousness is always present in these instances.

For the commentarial version of the path and fruition cognitive series, see The Path of Purification, Chapter 22, pp. 701-707 (PDF edition).

For an overview of the same, see The Seven Stages of Purification and the Insight Knowledges, p. 137.

:buddha1:
"Ñāṇa": Sorry, I was just going by the previous quote. I will always think of you and Tilt as being Venerables" ex-robes" and "bowl". In any event, thank you for the excellent references. I promise to use them fully and to good effect. :anjali: Ron
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

vinasp
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by vinasp » Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:50 am

Hi reflection,

Quote: "Do you mean the permanent cessation of vedana? Doesn't that only happen at pari-nibbana?"

Yes. But pari-nibbana has two meanings. It refers to the complete cessation of the
five aggregates, but there are two ways to understand the five aggregates.

1. Form is ones actual body, feeling, perception, volitional-formations and
consciousness are also these actual things. When understood in this way the
five aggregates can only cease at death.

2. The five aggregates are all fabricated mental-objects. The "form" objects
are representations of things known through the five senses. The "feeling"
objects are representations of feelings, and so forth for the other three.

These mental-objects can all cease at any time, so there is no need to wait
until one's death. This cessation is called pari-nibbana. It results in the
state called nibbana without residue.

"And what is it that he neither extinguishes nor kindles, but abides having
extinguished? He neither extinguishes nor kindles form, but abides having
extinguished it. He neither extinguishes nor kindles feeling ... perception ...
volitional-formations ... consciousness, but abides having extinguished it."

[Bhikkhu Bodhi, Connected Discourses, page 918, part of SN 22.79]

Note that when the "form" objects cease, actual feeling, perception, volition,
and consciousness, in relation to these objects, also cease. Another type of
consciousness takes over, this is the "object-less" consciousness.

Regards, Vincent.

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daverupa
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by daverupa » Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:33 pm

A few comments below.
reflection wrote:There is permanent and temporary cessation of the aggregates. The permanent is the parinibbana, the impermanent is seeing nibbana.
So, where do we find that nibbana is cessation of the aggregates? As I understand things, nibbana means a shift from upadanakkhandha to khandha; here, the khandha terminate with life, not with nibbana. It is their final breakup that nibbana precipitates, but nibbana is not that.
reflection wrote:This is the 'rise and fall' of the aggregates.
Seeing this for oneself is doing quite a lot. But, seeing this and the cessation of the aggregates are opposed to one another. Seeing rise and fall, internally and externally? Good. Not seeing any of it due to some manner of cessation? Well...
reflection wrote:And yes, clinging is the fetter, but the aggregates are the dukkha. So to understand what is not dukkha is to see beyond the aggregates.
The aggregates aren't dukkha; always it is the clinging-aggregates which are so described.
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

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reflection
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by reflection » Sat Aug 18, 2012 11:49 am

Hi daverupa,

We find that nibbana is a word that points to several things. One is indeed the way you interpret it, nibbana as a living experience. That's indeed one aspect of nibbana. But certainly nibbana as total remainderless cessation is also referred to as nibbana. So that's what 'falling' or 'vanishing' refers to. So more specifically it refers to dependent cessation.

One nice quote to show it's not really that much about the cessation of craving, but the cessation of the aggregates:
At Savatthi. Then the Venerable Ananda approached the Blessed One,
paid homage to him, sat down to one side, and said to him: "Venerable sir,
it is said, 'cessation, cessation.' Through the cessation of what things is
cessation spoken of?" "Form, etc, consciousness, Ananda, is impermanent,
conditioned, dependently arisen, subject to destruction, to vanishing, to
fading away, to cessation. Through its cessation, cessation is spoken of.
The prefix upādāna (lit. fuel) just emphasizes that the khandas can be subject to clinging. At many occasions there is no division between the clinging aggregates and the aggregates. They are often treated in general. I advise you to read the khandasamyutta (SN 22), where this is done numerous times.

But also elsewhere, for example dhammapada 202:
There is no fire like passion.
There is no evil like hatred.
There is no suffering like the aggregates.
There is no happiness higher than peace.
So to say it's always the 'clinging-aggregates' that are described as suffering, is incorrect.


But I'm sure this debate can easily be found elsewhere and we are just repeating it. So I'll leave it at this. As I've said time and time again, I'm not the biggest fan of basing everything on just suttas, anyway.

I hope this can help you or others.

With metta,
Reflection

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equilibrium
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by equilibrium » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:25 pm

All experiences through our perception are empty, they are not real, when one "KNOWs" this, one would not use it or depend on it.
The key here is to understand WHY they are not real......remember you are a human being thinking as a human being which is a wrong view!

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by Ron-The-Elder » Mon Aug 20, 2012 1:46 pm

equilibrium wrote:All experiences through our perception are empty, they are not real, when one "KNOWs" this, one would not use it or depend on it.
The key here is to understand WHY they are not real......remember you are a human being thinking as a human being which is a wrong view!
The perceptions indeed are not real in that they do not represent an accurate representation of that which our senses come into contact. They are but a biological symbol, which recognizes and describes the exterior event. This is not to say that the exterior event, or condition does not exist, oherwise there would be no event which can be seen by all he others with whom we share this planet. For example we all can observe a meteor shower. And, we can hunt, find, pick up, handle, feel, and pass around and discuss what rocks we find which have fallen from the sky. In that sense the objects we perceive are in fact real, as they have weight, volume, density, color, taste, smell, and make sounds when you bang two of them together or throw them to he ground.
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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equilibrium
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Re: Aggregate?

Post by equilibrium » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:15 pm

There is a saying: One cannot SEE beyond what one cannot understand.
The word SEE does not mean seeing by using the eyes, it uses the mind.

It is the mind that one needs to set free, to do so, one would need to empty it first.

Words are just words, don't be bounded by the words alone.....hence when one is reading, it is not the meaning of the words themselves, it is the real message and the meaning behind the words that are more important.

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