Ben wrote:I'm wondering whether this is in response to something I wrote on the "sabbe sankhara dukkha" thread when I qualified my statement that I am not claiming ariya status. If so, that's fine. For the sake of our members and guests, I do not want to give the impression of having an attainment I do not have. I felt it necessary given I was responding from the context of personal meditative experience and I am aware that some of the meditative experience could give someone the impression that I am an ariya - and I am not.
It is partly in response to what you wrote, but also the exchange before that between Tilt and Virgo. Since I am not really following the thread that closely (it got to heady for me, man!) I am not sure just what preceded this exchange. At any rate, I recalled a general remark made by Tilt some weeks ago about not being reborn in a low realm, to which a question was posed (in good humor, I suspect) about Tilts attainment level. This recollection plus the seemingly slight phrase of Virgo's, Tilts response to that, and your own response afterward, got me to thinking.
Just why does it seem that attainment is a touchy topic?
Of course, I have not been around the forums that long so I don't know what kind of shenanigans people have pulled in the past, so forgive my curiosity.
But of course I too am interested in the topic of attainments. First, it would be nice for everyone to know whether the path as it is practiced today is efficacious in attaining the goal. Second, what the rate of success is, and third, what trends exist in the life of a stream winner just prior to their entrance of the stream. The answer to the last one would be very helpful.
Unfortunately I can see a huge draw back for a genuine stream winner stating such on a web forum. In effect they would paint a bulls-eye on all their posts. Nothing they write would escape without being scrutinized, and often, I suspect, the scrutiny would not be out of love for the Dhamma. And since it is not agreed upon just how much stream entry reveals to the winner, in terms of dhamma, the possibility is definitely there that they would be found wanting in some way for only a very slight error. I mean, consider the size of the canon and the detail there: would a stream winner have all his t's crossed and i's dotted in terms of the minutest detail? Complete knowledge is, after all, the domain of a Buddha and not a mere sotapanna.
Anyway, I'm rambling here.
But anyone that thinks they're a stream winner, just email me. It'll stay hush hush.[email protected]