Mike wrote:I don't quite see the point that Retro was trying to make.
It was clearly nama-rupa that Kevin was referring to, and whether one chooses to render that in English as name and form or materiality and mentality doesn't matter, any more than whether they choose to render dukkha as suffering, stress, or satisfactoriness...
I don't see the relevance of this line of discussion, unless it is to suggest that the translation is so unreliable that we should simply ignore it, which seems unlikely and rather off the point of this particular conversation.
The point around nama-rupa revolves around the focus Kevin places upon it in this post ( http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... =60#p80798
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If nama-rupa is mentality-materiality, then that's fine, no worries... what Kevin is proposing seems quite coherent.
However if nama-rupa is name-and-form, it's a different story altogether, because there's a much clearer pathway by which the Mahasi method regarding labelling would be shown to be in accord with the Visuddhimagga method. I'll connect the dots, as I understand them...
Name-and-form needs to be explained with reference to consciousness. In the suttas (DN 15 for example), it is stated that the two are mutually dependent regarding their role in facilitating dukkha... other suttas speak of their relationship as a vortex or a whirlpool. There is also the classic reference of the two bundles of reeds supporting each other. So, in the Dhamma there are the six-consciousnesses - eye, ear, nose, body, tongue and mind. The consciousness is the raw unprocessed sensory input only... it is what is presented to the mind. Name-and-form is that active process of perceiving the raw input as a form, and conceptualising/bracketing it... or if you will, labelling it.
The Mahasi method of labelling helps to differentiate between name and form and consciousness. The labelling constitutes the name (concept) applied to the sensory form. It is useful to samma samadhi (hence the relationship of this to the overall topic) in the sense of curtailing conceptual proliferation by stopping at the label (name). By inhibiting papanca via labelling, samadhi is strengthened and in time, the act of labelling itself is dropped because it involves comparatively more papanca than the concentrated mind would naturally possess. With the cultivation of samma samadhi and the dismantling of name-and-form, consciousness will be seen as such, without the nama-rupa overlay. Or, as the Buddha said to Bahiya...
Ud 1.10: Bahiya Sutta wrote:"Then, Bahiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself. When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bahiya, there is no you in terms of that. When there is no you in terms of that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."
I hope that clears up the reasons behind my line of enquiry. I accept that it might seem rather abstract if one did not know where I was going with it.