Ben wrote:Hello Individual
Regarding SN44.10:We should carefully heed the two reasons the Buddha does not declare 'There is no self': not because he recognizes a transcendent self of some kind (as some interpreters allege), or because he is cocerned only with delineating 'a strategy of perception' devoid of ontological implications (as others hold), but (i)because such a mode of expression was used by the annihilationists, and the Buddha wanted to avoid aligning his teaching with theirs; and (ii) because he wished to avoid causing confusion in those already attached to the idea of self. The Buddha declares that "all phenomena are nonself" (sabbe dhamma anatta), which means that if one seeks a self anywhere one will not find one. Since "all phenomena" includes both the conditioned and the unconditioned, this precludes an utterly transcendent, ineffable self.
-- Bhikkhu Bodhi, notes to Ananda Sutta (SN44.10), A translation of the Samyutta Nikaya, Wisdom
That's Bhikkhu Bodhi's opinion, but I accept Thanissaro's view.
Chris wrote:With due respect, to obviate falling into misunderstanding ... of the two translators .... I'd go with Bhikkhu Bodhi everytime.
Based on my experiences with biblical translations, it's a mistake to ever assume that any translator is absolutely trustworthy... Not that I'm suggesting Bodhi is devious, only that he may have biases, stemming from his education, culture, personal background, sectarian affiliation, etc., which can subconsciously imprint itself on his rendering of the text. Not necessarily in blatantly incompetent ways (you said Bodhi is a good translator and I'm sure he is), but such bias can be reflected in more subtle, unintentional ways: such as the preference for a more literal translation over non-literal, or vice-versa. Without learning the language, the only way to really get a perfect picture of a translation's accuracy is to compare multiple translations, while referencing the original terms used in lexicons.
So, for now, I'd agree Bhikkhu Bodhi is probably more reliable, but in the future, if we have 8 different translations available online, there's nothing that would objectively make one more or less "authoritative".