Hi kirk,kirk5a wrote:Did you see this part?reflection wrote: Here it speaks of no perception of the four elements (ie body), and not saying there is no mind, unlike the first quote. So seems to me it is about a mental perception that is not nibbana itself, but a reflection upon nibbana, knowing how "this is peace etc."
The first quote is as I showed a mistranslation. When the 6 senses stop there is nothing left to be experienced.This is "nibbana itself" as it specifically says. Where else would "nibbana itself" be described?MahāKoṭṭhita: 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six spheres of contact, is it the case that there is not anything else?'
Sāriputta: 'Don't say that, my friend.'The Buddha: 'There is the case, Ānanda, where he would be percipient of this: "This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishing of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; stopping; nibbāna."'
The sutta also says the same thing about there being something (to be aware of):
So this sutta is about how to talk about things, not what there actually is or isn't. To quote Sariputta on why not to speak like this: "one is objectifying the non-objectified." So Sariputta asked not to talk like this so "there is nothing" can't be misunderstood as if nibbana is a "there"; as if there is a place or reality beyond the six senses, 'where' nothing is. So it is about how to speak about it conceptually to not confuse others or ourselves. It is not about what actually is or isn't. The funny thing is, this objectifying he was warning us for is exactly what happens when taking such quotes to imply something metaphysical.MahāKoṭṭhita: 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six spheres of contact [vision, hearing, smell, taste, touch, & intellection] is it the case that there is anything else?'
Sāriputta: 'Don't say that, my friend.'
But Sariputta did it himself when he said "where there is nothing felt". (AN 9.34) So how to speak about it I would say depends on context and who we're speaking to. I think Sariputta was wise enough to distinguish to who he could relate in which ways.
The second quote is not incompatible with my view that one can reflect upon nibbana even if it can not be experienced. Since perception itself is fabricated, you can't percieve "the resolution (stilling?) of all fabrications". You can however read it as "he is percipient of this: nibbana is peaceful." instead of "he is percipient of nibbana". Here my suggested reading is a contemplation about nibbana:
And what, Ananda, is contemplation of detachment? Herein, Ananda, a monk having gone to the forest, or to the foot of a tree, or to a lonely place, contemplates thus: 'This is peaceful, this is sublime, namely, the stilling of all conditioned things, the giving up of all substratum of becoming, the extinction of craving, detachment, Nibbana.' This, Ananda, is called contemplation of detachment.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .piya.html