“Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Textual analysis and comparative discussion on early Buddhist sects and texts.
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DAWN
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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by DAWN » Mon Nov 19, 2012 3:45 pm

beeblebrox wrote:The Buddha's hand is showing a debate (or teaching) mudra... and Jesus' handshape is more complicated to explain... I think it's basically an abbreviation of the Greek's spelling of his name, when seen from a certain angle (as shown in this painting for example). I think it's pretty much an invention of the iconographists, not Jesus'.
Oh yes, i see.
I think is for theaching too, because you see he have a book.

Anyway...
Just a question that arise in my mind. Thanks you a lot. :anjali:
Sabbe dhamma anatta
We are not concurents...
I'am sorry for my english

Raksha
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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by Raksha » Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:12 pm

DAWN wrote:Mahayana argument of their "superiority" towards Theravada by "Skillful Means" , shows that actualy is not Mahayana that is "superior" school, but Theravada
Lord Buddha did not teach an inferior vehicle. Everyone is different hence there are a variety of paths. Upaya kausalya actually refers to an adaptive methodology, so both Buddhist art and Buddhist music are considered skillful means.

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DAWN
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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by DAWN » Tue Nov 20, 2012 4:36 am

Raksha wrote:
DAWN wrote:Mahayana argument of their "superiority" towards Theravada by "Skillful Means" , shows that actualy is not Mahayana that is "superior" school, but Theravada
Lord Buddha did not teach an inferior vehicle. Everyone is different hence there are a variety of paths. Upaya kausalya actually refers to an adaptive methodology, so both Buddhist art and Buddhist music are considered skillful means.
It's true, but i said that specialy to show that this logic is not good.

Actualy Mahayana is wery usefull to Dhamma, because peoples wich mind is much aflicted can not enter, and accept directly Buddha words of renonciation, so they comes to Mahayana, and after they mind is able to accept and see Buddha Dhamma.
I saw many peoples come from M. to T., but never saw enverse.

Anyway, some knots are complicated, other less, and each knot must be desuntangled
Sabbe dhamma anatta
We are not concurents...
I'am sorry for my english

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Dan74
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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by Dan74 » Tue Nov 20, 2012 4:58 am

DAWN wrote: I saw many peoples come from M. to T., but never saw enverse.
Anagarika Govinda, John Blofeld, Phra Khantipalo, Paul Breiter... are some that I know of.
_/|\_

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DAWN
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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by DAWN » Tue Nov 20, 2012 5:00 am

Dan74 wrote:
DAWN wrote: I saw many peoples come from M. to T., but never saw enverse.
Anagarika Govinda, John Blofeld, Phra Khantipalo, Paul Breiter... are some that I know of.
Oh, yes. Now i know :smile:
Sabbe dhamma anatta
We are not concurents...
I'am sorry for my english

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by Raksha » Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:53 pm

DAWN wrote:Actualy Mahayana is wery usefull to Dhamma, because peoples wich mind is much aflicted can not enter, and accept directly Buddha words of renonciation, so they comes to Mahayana
Strange...I have heard Mahayana practitioners make almost identical remarks about the Theravada. Recently, at a Buddhist conference I publicly attacked one Vajrayana speaker for disparaging the Theravada, as suitable for those incapable of following the 'superior' Vajrayana. Lord Buddha did not teach an inferior vehicle, which means that they are all equally excellent. It depends on the individual, one with inferior motivation and effort will make a poor job even if taught personally by a Buddha. In truth we are one family, Ekayana, and no brother or sister is superior to another. In the present age it is imperative that we overcome perceived differences between teachings and work together.

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by daverupa » Tue Nov 20, 2012 4:02 pm

Raksha wrote:Lord Buddha did not teach an inferior vehicle, which means that they are all equally excellent.
Lord Buddha did not teach vajrayana. One accepts that it was held in Naga realms, or what-have-you, without any more evidence than that offered for the Qu'ran having been delivered to Mohammad via angel.
  • "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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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by ALot » Tue Nov 20, 2012 5:07 pm

Ānanda, in the future, if the bhikkhus can't handle anatta, teach them about buddha nature. If the bhikkhus become obsessed with dhamma analysis, teach them emptiness. If the bhikkhus cherish scriptures instead of practise, teach them about a special transmission outside the scriptures. If the bhikkhus lack interest in morality and meditation, teach them about secret tantras they'll receive later.

-Buddha, Mahaparinibbana Sutta, classified attachment "Skillful Means"

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by daverupa » Tue Nov 20, 2012 5:41 pm

ALot wrote:
Ānanda, in the future, if the bhikkhus can't handle anatta, teach them about buddha nature. If the bhikkhus become obsessed with dhamma analysis, teach them emptiness. If the bhikkhus cherish scriptures instead of practise, teach them about a special transmission outside the scriptures. If the bhikkhus lack interest in morality and meditation, teach them about secret tantras they'll receive later.

-Buddha, Mahaparinibbana Sutta, classified attachment "Skillful Means"
Where is this passage, for example, in the following link:

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .vaji.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Part and section, if possible.

:heart:
  • "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]

ALot
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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by ALot » Tue Nov 20, 2012 6:11 pm

daverupa wrote:Part and section, if possible.
It belongs here, between paragraphs 1 and 2, but it's classified stuff, not visible for everyone:
http://www.bps.lk/olib/wh/wh067-u.html# ... xhortation" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
1. Now the Blessed One spoke to the Venerable Ānanda, saying: “It may be, Ānanda, that to some among you the thought will come: ‘Ended is the word of the Master; we have a Master no longer.’ But it should not, Ānanda, be so considered. For that which I have proclaimed and made known as the Dhamma and the Discipline, that shall be your Master when I am gone.

--confidential Skillful Means--
Ānanda, in the future, if the bhikkhus can't handle anatta, teach them about buddha nature. If the bhikkhus become obsessed with dhamma analysis, teach them emptiness. If the bhikkhus cherish scriptures instead of practise, teach them about a special transmission outside the scriptures. If the bhikkhus lack interest in morality and meditation, teach them about secret tantras they'll receive later.
--confidential--


2. “And, Ānanda, whereas now the bhikkhus address one another as ‘friend,’ let it not be so when I am gone. The senior bhikkhus, Ānanda, may address the junior ones by their name, their family name, or as ‘friend’; but the junior bhikkhus should address the senior ones as ‘venerable sir’ or ‘your reverence.’
But all this super secret classified stuff probably doesn't belong to "Early Buddhism".

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by DAWN » Tue Nov 20, 2012 7:35 pm

Good joke :smile:
Sabbe dhamma anatta
We are not concurents...
I'am sorry for my english

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytism

Post by Kusala » Wed Nov 21, 2012 3:01 am

Raksha wrote:
DAWN wrote:Actualy Mahayana is wery usefull to Dhamma, because peoples wich mind is much aflicted can not enter, and accept directly Buddha words of renonciation, so they comes to Mahayana
Strange...I have heard Mahayana practitioners make almost identical remarks about the Theravada. Recently, at a Buddhist conference I publicly attacked one Vajrayana speaker for disparaging the Theravada, as suitable for those incapable of following the 'superior' Vajrayana. Lord Buddha did not teach an inferior vehicle, which means that they are all equally excellent. It depends on the individual, one with inferior motivation and effort will make a poor job even if taught personally by a Buddha. In truth we are one family, Ekayana, and no brother or sister is superior to another. In the present age it is imperative that we overcome perceived differences between teachings and work together.
I agree. Even though Theravada and Mahayana (Vajrayana included) are different branches of Buddhism, we're still one big family.
Image

"He, the Blessed One, is indeed the Noble Lord, the Perfectly Enlightened One;
He is impeccable in conduct and understanding, the Serene One, the Knower of the Worlds;
He trains perfectly those who wish to be trained; he is Teacher of gods and men; he is Awake and Holy. "

--------------------------------------------
"The Dhamma is well-expounded by the Blessed One,
Apparent here and now, timeless, encouraging investigation,
Leading to liberation, to be experienced individually by the wise. "

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytis

Post by Paribbajaka » Wed May 08, 2013 9:18 pm

James the Giant wrote:When I first learned about "Skillful Means" I was appalled and aghast:
"You're saying the Buddha DELIBERATELY LIED for 45 years of teaching!?"
After a bit of study I understand the idea of Upaya better, but it still seems a bit icky and dishonest to me.

To be honest, (and without a shred of evidence offered by me) it seems like exactly the kind of thing a new sect would fabricate in order to discredit the old school.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

How is the above different from skillful means?
May all beings be happy!

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytis

Post by binocular » Thu May 09, 2013 7:29 am

Paribbajaka wrote:http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

How is the above different from skillful means?
In the case of Venerable Nanda, the trick involves two people, one who is in on the trick and one who isn't. And it was resolved within foreseeable time.

As things stand, the Mahayanist "skillful means" look more like an attempt to deliberately fool oneself, actually knowing that one is fooling oneself but doing it anyway. And this for an unspecified time duration.

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Re: “Skillful Means” and the rhetoric of Mahāyāna proselytis

Post by Dan74 » Thu May 09, 2013 9:45 am

binocular wrote:
Paribbajaka wrote:http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

How is the above different from skillful means?
In the case of Venerable Nanda, the trick involves two people, one who is in on the trick and one who isn't. And it was resolved within foreseeable time.

As things stand, the Mahayanist "skillful means" look more like an attempt to deliberately fool oneself, actually knowing that one is fooling oneself but doing it anyway. And this for an unspecified time duration.
How do you mean?

I am not aware of Mahayana Buddhists deliberately fooling themselves as part of their practice.
_/|\_

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