Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Jason » Sun Sep 12, 2010 2:06 am

I also don't think that the Buddha was sexist, even if he did institute the eight weighty rules for women. And while I don't have anything new to add to the discussion, anyone who's interested can read my past thoughts about this topic here.
"Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya" (AN 7.58).

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by yuttadhammo » Sun Sep 12, 2010 6:27 am

Sunset wrote:
yuttadhammo wrote:I am surprised you would deny that the isolation from the opposite gender is an important part of that expedient.
With respects Venerable Yuttadhammo, I do not have the faintest idea of what you are talking about. "Isolation" is not only a very strong word but also an unrealistic one.
Wow, we really are in two worlds then. I am talking about a very important Buddhist term, viveka. Kaayaviveka (physical seclusion) is the biggest advantage I can think a monk has over a lay person... I can only assume your belief that it is unrealistic has something to do with your understanding of the monastic life, which is obviously quite different from mine.
Similarly, with your phraseology "the supermagnetic attraction between the genders", I do not have the faintest idea of what you are talking about. The Buddha advised in the suttas how his bhikkhus remain free from sensuality by regarding each woman as a 'mother', 'sister' or 'daughter' and, if required, practise the meditation on 'loathsomeness' in respect to the parts of the body.
I'm sorry, please don't take it personally, but I have to assume you haven't really made a thorough investigation of the Buddha's teaching. The Buddha told Ananda that they should not see women if at all possible (DN 16). The opening chapter of the Anguttara Nikaya should be enough to give you at least a "faint" idea of what I'm talking about.
I personally commenced all of my meditation in retreats that comprised of men & women and later practised more meditation alone in forests. I do not recall any difference.
Basically what you are saying is this:

I practiced meditation with men, then practiced alone. I can recall no difference. Therefore, no problems arise when celibate men come in close contact with women.

I'll bet many, many of my ex-fellow monks wish it were as you say.

The Buddha admonished monks not even to look at a woman's face when receiving alms from her (Cv VIII). I could go on, but it shouldn't really be necessary. On the one hand you are arguing that the Bhikkhunis should be a separate entity, and on the other that they should be able to live together with the Bhikkhus. I stand by my belief that neither position is tenable, not from a canonical point of view nor a practical one.

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by yuttadhammo » Sun Sep 12, 2010 6:40 am

Paññāsikhara wrote:Studies of the textual history of the canon indicate that these things were and are not so "clearly demarcated" as we may think. A very hard kind of formalization occurs with modern print in particular, as opposed to oral transmission. This involves the use of commentary interwoven amongst the original.
Which studies are those? I think you are reading far too much into my words. I used the word "buddhavacana" to mean something stated in the canon as being said by the Buddha. I have yet to find a compelling reason to believe they were not, but I'm willing to listen. As for clearly demarcated non-Buddhavacana in the canon, I was referring to suttas like the Sammaditthi Sutta or the Rathavinita Sutta, and parts of KN, like the Patisambhidamagga or the Milindapanha. These are clearly demarcated in my mind as being non-buddhavacana. I was making no reference to the argument as to whether any part of the canon is ascribed to the Buddha or one of his disciples erroneously.

I guess what you are trying to say is that the garu dhamma are offspring of " commentary interwoven amongst the original". Your task then is to find both a factual and practical basis for the application of this theory. I tried to argue that it is clear that practically speaking, even if the Buddha didn't instate something like the garu dhamma, he should have anyway. Perhaps I failed in this. M'eh. How can I not fail, me with my very little brain?

:back to meditating:

Sunset

Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Sunset » Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:24 am

yuttadhammo wrote:I was referring to suttas like the Sammaditthi Sutta.
Dear Venerable Yuttadhammo.

Off topic but why the Sammaditthi Sutta? I have never noticed any conflict there.

What about the Satipatthana Sutta and its incoherent listing of various disconnected and random ordered meditation teachings? For example, how could contemplation of the five hindrances occur in the fourth Satipatthana, at the end? This would indicate no concentration has been developed.

Warm regards

:smile:

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Paññāsikhara » Sun Sep 12, 2010 8:28 am

yuttadhammo wrote:
Paññāsikhara wrote:Studies of the textual history of the canon indicate that these things were and are not so "clearly demarcated" as we may think. A very hard kind of formalization occurs with modern print in particular, as opposed to oral transmission. This involves the use of commentary interwoven amongst the original.
Which studies are those? I think you are reading far too much into my words. I used the word "buddhavacana" to mean something stated in the canon as being said by the Buddha. I have yet to find a compelling reason to believe they were not, but I'm willing to listen. As for clearly demarcated non-Buddhavacana in the canon, I was referring to suttas like the Sammaditthi Sutta or the Rathavinita Sutta, and parts of KN, like the Patisambhidamagga or the Milindapanha. These are clearly demarcated in my mind as being non-buddhavacana. I was making no reference to the argument as to whether any part of the canon is ascribed to the Buddha or one of his disciples erroneously.

I guess what you are trying to say is that the garu dhamma are offspring of " commentary interwoven amongst the original". Your task then is to find both a factual and practical basis for the application of this theory. I tried to argue that it is clear that practically speaking, even if the Buddha didn't instate something like the garu dhamma, he should have anyway. Perhaps I failed in this. M'eh. How can I not fail, me with my very little brain?

:back to meditating:
"What studies?"

Are you familiar with Gethin's work in this area? And also, just basic comparisons of alternate versions of the same texts, in Pali, Gandhari, Sanskrit, Chinese, etc. and then back reference to the commentaries. What one tradition has as a commentary, another tradition has in the text itself. That is the "factual basis", which results from the "practice" of how the canon was compiled, and the commentaries, in ancient India.

And then, the position of attributing the Pts within the KN by some schools, which is canonical, ie. buddhavacana. Whether or not " [t]hese are clearly demarcated in [your] mind as being non-buddhavacana". Other schools say otherwise.

So, not so clearly demarcated at all. Unless we wish to do a: What the Pali Text Society editions (or whatever version) say are sutta are sutta, are not sutta are not sutta, and leave it at that. But then we'd have to say that the garudhammas are taught by the Buddha, and leave it at that, too. I'd rather dig a little deeper.
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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Cittasanto » Sun Sep 12, 2010 9:18 am

Sunset wrote:
yuttadhammo wrote:I was referring to suttas like the Sammaditthi Sutta.
Dear Venerable Yuttadhammo.

Off topic but why the Sammaditthi Sutta? I have never noticed any conflict there.

What about the Satipatthana Sutta and its incoherent listing of various disconnected and random ordered meditation teachings? For example, how could contemplation of the five hindrances occur in the fourth Satipatthana, at the end? This would indicate no concentration has been developed.

Warm regards

:smile:
one reason would be that the Buddha didn't say that/those suttas according to the uddeso sections! it was Sariputta.

therefore it would not be Buddhavacana as in spoken by the Buddha, but would be Buddhavacana as in spoken by one who understands, ie any enlightened being, a disciple etc. the Satipatthana sutts is spoken by the Buddha therefore would be classed as Buddhavacana.

that is FWIW what I think Bhante is referring to, not scholarship which 'proves' dates of additions etc!

but the clue is in the name to start, SATIpatthana, and indicates no concentration has been developer??? :rofl:
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He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by yuttadhammo » Mon Sep 13, 2010 10:31 pm

Sunset wrote:
yuttadhammo wrote:I was referring to suttas like the Sammaditthi Sutta.
Dear Venerable Yuttadhammo.

Off topic but why the Sammaditthi Sutta? I have never noticed any conflict there.
As Manapa says, and what should have been clear from my post, I was referring to the fact that the Sammaditthi Sutta was spoken by Sariputta.
What about the Satipatthana Sutta and its incoherent listing of various disconnected and random ordered meditation teachings? For example, how could contemplation of the five hindrances occur in the fourth Satipatthana, at the end? This would indicate no concentration has been developed.
That's really a sad argument for the non-authenticity of the text... the four satipatthana are in no way a chronologically ordered list of meditation practices, they are to be practised together, or separately according to one's carita. What you are suggesting, basically, is that the satipatthana sutta as it stands suggests the practice of kaayanusati, then vedana, then citta, then finally dhamma. Of course this is not proper meditation practice, since the hindrances will have to be dealt with in the very beginning of one's practice. Your argument is akin to saying the five precepts should be kept in the order they are presented. If you are truly interested in the relationship between the five hindrances and the practice of satipatthana, I recommend the lengthy debate between a Mahasi Sayadaw teacher and a Sri Lankan teacher:

http://www.mahasi.org.mm/e_pdf/E24pdf.PDF" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

You need a font to read it properly:

http://www.mahasi.org.mm/fonts/bptimesn.ttf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Best wishes,

yd

Sunset

Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Sunset » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:09 am

I was referring to the fact that the Sammaditthi Sutta was spoken by Sariputta.
Bhikkhu Yuttadhammo

I must certainly disagree with you strongly. The Buddha advised in the Ekapuggala Sutta in the AN 1s that if there is one person who can follow up the Dhamma declared by him, it is the Venerable Sariputta. Suttas such as MN 9, MN 18, MN 44 (spoken by Dhammadinna) and MN 141 are Buddhavacca because they are consistent with what the Buddha spoke. As concluded in MN 18 and MN 44:
Maha Kaccana is wise, monks. He is a person of great discernment. If you had asked me about this matter, I too would have answered in the same way he did. That is the meaning of this statement. That is how you should remember it.

Dhammadinna the nun is wise, Visakha, a woman of great discernment. If you had asked me those things, I would have answered you in the same way she did. That is the meaning of those things. That is how you should remember it.
Of course this is not proper meditation practice, since the hindrances will have to be dealt with in the very beginning of one's practice.
Bhikkhu Yuttadhammo

What you have stated above is the exact point I was making.
If you are truly interested in the relationship between the five hindrances and the practice of satipatthana, I recommend the lengthy debate between a Mahasi Sayadaw teacher and a Sri Lankan teacher.
Thank you but no thank you. You have already presented enough idiosyncratic opinions I am inclined to disagree with. Recommending your own school is not really the answer. The suttas make clear the place of the five hindrances.

Warm regards

:smile:
On returning from his almsround, after his meal he sits down, folding his legs crosswise, setting his body erect, and establishing mindfulness before him. Abandoning covetousness for the world he abides with a mind free from covetousness; he purifies his mind from covetousness. Abandoning ill-will and hatred, he abides with a mind free from ill-will, compassionate for the welfare of all living beings; he purifies his mind from ill-will and hatred. Abandoning sloth and torpor, he abides free from sloth and torpor, percipient of light, mindful and fully aware; he purifies his mind from sloth and torpor. Abandoning restlessness and remorse, he abides unagitated with a mind inwardly peaceful; he purifies his mind from restlessness and remorse. Abandoning doubt, he abides having gone beyond doubt, unperplexed about wholesome states; he purifies his mind of doubt.

“Having thus abandoned these five hindrances, imperfections of the mind that weaken wisdom, quite secluded from sensual pleasures, secluded from unwholesome states, he enters upon and abides in the first jhāna, which is accompanied by thinking and examining thought, with joy and happiness born of seclusion. With the stilling of thinking and examining thought, he enters and abides in the second jhāna which has self-confidence and stillness of mind without thinking and examining thought, with joy and happiness born of collectedness. With the fading away as well of joy a bhikkhu abides in equanimity, and mindful and fully aware, still feeling pleasure with the body, he enters and abides in the third jhāna, on account of which noble ones announce: ‘He has a pleasant abiding who has equanimity and is mindful.' With the abandoning of pleasure and pain, and with the previous disappearance of joy and grief, a bhikkhu enters and abides in the fourth jhāna, which has neither -pain-nor-pleasure and purity of mindfulness due to equanimity.

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Cittasanto » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:25 am

Sunset wrote:
I was referring to the fact that the Sammaditthi Sutta was spoken by Sariputta.
Bhikkhu Yuttadhammo

I must certainly disagree with you strongly. The Buddha advised in the Ekapuggala Sutta in the AN 1s that if there is one person who can follow up the Dhamma declared by him, it is the Venerable Sariputta. Suttas such as MN 9, MN 18, MN 44 (spoken by Dhammadinna) and MN 141 are Buddhavacca because they are consistent with what the Buddha spoke. As concluded in MN 18 and MN 44:
Maha Kaccana is wise, monks. He is a person of great discernment. If you had asked me about this matter, I too would have answered in the same way he did. That is the meaning of this statement. That is how you should remember it.

Dhammadinna the nun is wise, Visakha, a woman of great discernment. If you had asked me those things, I would have answered you in the same way she did. That is the meaning of those things. That is how you should remember it.
are you saying the Buddha did, because that is all you can disagree with!
The Buddha did not speak that, or all suttas so those would not be litterally Buddhavacana i.e. spoken by the Buddha, which is the point being made and why they were mentioned, as not being Buddhavacana, in that sense of the term, not in the sense of being spoken by one who understands.
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He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

Sunset

Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Sunset » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:31 am

yuttadhammo wrote:That's really a sad argument for the non-authenticity of the text... the four satipatthana are in no way a chronologically ordered list of meditation practices
Venerable Yuttadhamma

Most teachings of the Buddha are expressions of the path. All of the 37 bodhipaccikya dhammas are expressions of the path. Four satipatthana, four right efforts, four iddhipada, five faculties, five powers, seven factors of enlightenement and the eightfold path. The former dhammas in all of these groups of dhammas flow into the later dhammas, which is why they are expessions of the path. The Anapanasati Sutta is an expression of the path. The discourses on Dependent Cessation are expressions of the path.

The Satipatthana Sutta is not an expression of the path. And yes, expressions of the path are chronologically ordered, which is why they are expressions of the path.

As for your opinion about the five precepts, the five precepts are not "the path".

Warm regards

:smile:

Sunset

Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Sunset » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:43 am

Manapa wrote:...but the clue is in the name to start, SATIpatthana, and indicates no concentration has been developed???
Manapa

If no concentration has been developed, then SATIpatthana is not the path, because the path is eight factors rather than one. Please note your opinion is at odds with the Anapanasati Sutta, which includes concentration and insight. The Anapanasati Sutta states:
This is how mindfulness of in-&-out breathing is developed & pursued so as to bring the four frames of reference to their culmination.

This is how the four frames of reference are developed & pursued so as to bring the seven factors for awakening to their culmination.

This is how the seven factors for awakening are developed & pursued so as to bring clear knowing & release to their culmination.
The seven factors for awakening include concentration.

Warm regards

:smile:

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Cittasanto » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:56 am

sunset,
Sorry I realised that I misrepresented the teaching there!
what I should of said is; it is sati that is being developed and the focus of that sutta, not concentration specifically! concentraction would naturally develop but it is not the aim to delve into sammasamadhi within that context, but to explore the different ways mindfulness can and should be developed!

I am not going to be able to respond again unfortunately
Sunset wrote:
Manapa wrote:...but the clue is in the name to start, SATIpatthana, and indicates no concentration has been developed???
Manapa

If no concentration has been developed, then SATIpatthana is not the path, because the path is eight factors rather than one. Please note your opinion is at odds with the Anapanasati Sutta, which includes concentration and insight. The Anapanasati Sutta states:
This is how mindfulness of in-&-out breathing is developed & pursued so as to bring the four frames of reference to their culmination.

This is how the four frames of reference are developed & pursued so as to bring the seven factors for awakening to their culmination.

This is how the seven factors for awakening are developed & pursued so as to bring clear knowing & release to their culmination.
The seven factors for awakening include concentration.

Warm regards

:smile:
Blog, Suttas, Aj Chah, Facebook.

He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Sasana » Sun Nov 21, 2010 5:09 pm

Terasi wrote:I am disappointed. Yes, it's naive, but I have to get it out. I've been reading about many matters in Theravada in the attempt to know more about the path of my choice, and so far this is one issue which I fail to persuade myself to understand. As a newcomer to Theravada, I have nothing to say in terms of Vinaya, Sutta, etc, but I do have something to say as a female who is currently on the doorstep of Theravada. So, this sect that I thought is down-to-earth, fair, rational, cool-headed, is actually an exclusive boy's club?'

Stop thinking from male or female point of view, think about human. It's hard to be born as human, why would half the population want to deprive the other half? Both the boys and the girls have to learn to control "the supermagnetic attraction between the genders". Please do not think that for the sake of the boys, then let the girls out in the cold. I can understand the reason why monastics do not handle money, which is to rid themselves of the temptation to be greedy. In this matter though, let's not forget this is not money, not just a thing/object, here we are talking about women who.. surprise surprise... are human!

OK, I've said I got nothing to contribute. The person described in OP's post doesn't sound like the Buddha I've been hearing about so far. How are we to be sure that the words come from the Buddha himself? And if those are truly his, it must be for 2500 years ago, and now.. hello.. time's changed. Separation is possible, noone said monks and nuns have to reside together, travel together, meet everyday etc - if you are worried about some monks being "chick magnet". The Buddha himself said that minor adjustments are possible, while on the other hand the Sangha was described as consisting of bhikkhunis too. Trying to keep bhikkhunis out of the picture, that would be a major change. Why would a good monk be refrained from helping his fellow seekers, who happen to be women, to ordain?

Saying so much, this's only a minor fraction of Theravada. There are bhikkhunis in other countries - why can't they learn from others. Sorry, I definitely don't know much, the ordination, the Vinaya, etc. are not my concern (yet). I just can't stand outdated misogynistic views, be it in Buddhism or elsewhere. Stopping this little rant now, back to my corner.

/rant


I personally think there should be an equal standing for both males and females.

As for Bhikkuni ordination I am also a great advocate.

Metta
"If the problem can be solved there's no use worrying about it, if it cant worrying will do no good." - 7 years in Tibet

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." - The Buddha

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Individual » Mon Nov 22, 2010 12:36 am

Rather than engaging in speculation, I think it would be better for some monasteries to make men and women equal in rules, and for other monasteries to keep the traditional rules. Then we can be mindful of the results.

If there are already monasteries out there which are like both, perhaps people with experiences with both monasteries could share their insights on how they think their way is the best. :)
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: Canonicity of the Bhikkhuni Garu Dhamma

Post by Sasana » Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:52 am

Individual wrote:Rather than engaging in speculation, I think it would be better for some monasteries to make men and women equal in rules, and for other monasteries to keep the traditional rules. Then we can be mindful of the results.

If there are already monasteries out there which are like both, perhaps people with experiences with both monasteries could share their insights on how they think their way is the best. :)
I think in reality we would find that there would be little difference between men and women. Although it's true to say men and women are different, well it is also true that I am different to you and you to another and so on. The middle way should when practiced properly eliminate the potential for problems regardless of gender IMHO.

Just my two cents as I have always thought it strange the gender bias involved in the Sangha.

With Metta,

Adam :mrgreen:
"If the problem can be solved there's no use worrying about it, if it cant worrying will do no good." - 7 years in Tibet

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." - The Buddha

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