robertk wrote:I just don't see that much difference between him and any other teacher who disputes the classical Theravada, so the apparent venom in this thread seems a tad unfair.
Not at all unfair.
Let's move onto the points in dispute and look at those rather than his background.
And here is the problem in the OP talk there really are not points of dispute raised in terms of the Visuddhimagga; rather, what we get is a distortion of the Buddhaghosa story as a way of dismissing the Visuddhimagga, and I have already addressed that at some length. And we have stuff like this:
Vimalaramsi wrote:Even today if you go to teachers of one-pointed concentration and ask them: “How does craving arise?” Or you ask them: “What is craving?” They can’t tell you. “Craving is desire.” “Let go of all desire.” [A gesture of ”huh?"] But they are serious; that is what they tell you. I know because I asked many, many very big monks this question and that’s the answer they give me. They don’t know how craving arises; they don’t know how to recognize it when it does arise; they don’t know how to let it go. Now, doesn’t that sound a little bit different from what I am teaching? . . . So, you have to understand I studied the Visuddhimagga for 20 years. I have had very many intelligent teachers [dramatic hand gesture of dismissal].
This leaves something to be desired.