Author Topic: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern  (Read 255 times)

Offline Samana Johann

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After some music:

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The Middles of the Middle Way

 In his very first sermon, the Buddha introduced his path of practice as a middle way that avoids two extremes: a commitment to sensual pleasures related to sensual desires, and a commitment to self-affliction. On the surface, this statement makes the path sound like a middling way, at a bland halfway point on the continuum between pleasure and pain. But if you read further in the Canon on the middle way, you realize that its middleness is much more complex than that.

To begin with, there are times when the Buddha recommends pursuing pleasant practice; and other times where he recommends painful practice. There are also times where he talks of the middleness of his middle way in different terms entirely. When discussing one of the more advanced stages of the first factor of the path, right view, he describes it as a perspective that avoids questions requiring an either/or response, where both the either and the or entangle you in issues that distract you from the task of putting an end to suffering and stress. This aspect of the path is middle in the sense that it cuts right through the middle of such questions and throws both alternatives off to the side.

This means that the Buddha chose his words carefully. The path doesn't necessarily lie between two extremes. It avoids two extremes. But exactly which directions it goes in avoiding them is up to the discernment of each practitioner to find out. Sometimes you avoid extremes by finding a point of moderation on a continuum running between them: a point that doesn't always stay right in the middle, and that can move unexpectedly. Sometimes you avoid extremes by leaving the continuum entirely. The Buddha's middle way has middles of both sorts.  Read more
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Offline Rahul

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2017, 08:04:23 pm »

To begin with, there are times when the Buddha recommends pursuing pleasant practice; and other times ...


When exactly did the Buddha 'recommend' pursuing pleasant practice? What were those 'pleasant' practices?

Offline Samana Johann

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2017, 11:47:01 pm »
Aside of the fact, that you Rahul, out of you indention, out of unwholesome mindstate, out of simply disrespect, will not gain much from the unswer, since it can not be espected, that Rahul could be tamed, has even intention to get tamed, and that he actually already had the possibility by simply reading attentive, this answer with a sample in case is for those who are able to get healed:

A sample where he actually encouraged to "Sukhathā" and better avoid "Dukkathā" is in assosiation and discussing with people:

Quote
Dukkathā Sutta: Unpleasant talk

- Namo tassa bhagavato arahato sammā-sambuddhassa -

"Bhikkhus, five kinds of talks are unpleasant varying from person to person. What five?

"Bhikkhus, a talk on faith is unpleasant to one without faith, a talk on virtues is unpleasant to an unvirtuous, a talk on learnedness is unpleasant to one without learning, a talk on benevolence is unpleasant to a miser, a talk on wisdom is unpleasant to a stupid.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on faith unpleasant to one without faith?

"Bhikkhus, one without faith hearing a talk on faith becomes ill tempered, angry, retorts angrily and shows aversion. What is the reason? He does not see the attainment of faith in him and does not experience joy and delight on account of faith. Therefore to one without faith a talk on faith is unpleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on virtues unpleasant to an unvirtuous?

"Bhikkhus, an unvirtuous one hearing a talk on virtues becomes ill tempered, angry, retorts angrily and shows aversion. What is the reason? He does not see the attainment of virtues in him and does not experience joy and delight on account of virtues. Therefore to one without virtues a talk on virtues is unpleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on learnedness unpleasant to one without learning?

"Bhikkhus, one without learning hearing a talk on learning becomes ill tempered, angry, retorts angrily and shows aversion. What is the reason? He does not see the attainment of learning in him and does not experience joy and delight on account of learnedness. Therefore to one without learnedness a talk on learnedness is unpleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on benevolence unpleasant to a miser?

"Bhikkhus, a miser hearing a talk on benevolence becomes ill tempered, angry, retorts angrily and shows aversion. What is the reason? He does not see the attainment of benevolence in him and does not experience joy and delight on account of benevolence. Therefore to a miser a talk on benevolence is unpleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on wisdom unpleasant to a stupid?

"Bhikkhus, a stupid one hearing a talk on wisdom becomes ill tempered, angry, retorts angrily and shows aversion. What is the reason? He does not see the attainment of wisdom in him and does not experience joy and delight on account of wisdom. Therefore to a stupid a talk on wisdom is unpleasant.

"Bhikkhus, five kinds of talks are pleasant varying from person to person. What five?

"Bhikkhus, a talk on faith is pleasant to one with faith, a talk on virtues is pleasant to a virtuous, a talk on learnedness is pleasant to one with learning, a talk on benevolence is pleasant to a benevolent one, a talk on wisdom is pleasant to a wise one.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on faith pleasant to one with faith?

"Bhikkhus, one with faith hearing a talk on faith does not become ill tempered or angry does not retort angrily or show aversion. What is the reason? He sees the attainment of faith in him and experiences joy and delight on account of faith. Therefore to one with faith a talk on faith is pleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on virtues pleasant to a virtuous?

"Bhikkhus, a virtuous one hearing a talk on virtues does not become ill tempered or angry, does not retort angrily or show aversion. What is the reason? He sees the attainment of virtues in him and experience joy and delight on account of virtues. Therefore to one with virtues a talk on virtues is pleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on learnedness pleasant to one with learning?

"Bhikkhus, one with learning hearing a talk on learning does not become ill tempered or angry, does not retort angrily or show aversion. What is the reason? He sees the attainment of learning in him and experiences joy and delight on account of learnedness. Therefore to one with learnedness a talk on learnedness is pleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on benevolence pleasant to a benevolent one?

"Bhikkhus, a benevolent one hearing a talk on benevolence does not become ill tempered or angry, does not retort angrily and show aversion. What is the reason? He sees the attainment of benevolence in him and experiences joy and delight on account of benevolence. Therefore to a benevolent one a talk on benevolence is pleasant.

"Bhikkhus, why is a talk on wisdom pleasant to a wise one?

"Bhikkhus, a wise one hearing a talk on wisdom does not become ill tempered or angry, does not retort angrily or show aversion. What is the reason? He sees the attainment of wisdom in him and experiences joy and delight on account of wisdom. Therefore to a wise one a talk on wisdom is pleasant. Bhikkhus, these five kinds of talks are pleasant varying from person to person."


Also in other outwardly regards he recommended avioiding dukkhathā:

Quote
from: Sabbasava Sutta: All the Fermentations

"[5] And what are the fermentations to be abandoned by avoiding? There is the case where a monk, reflecting appropriately, avoids a wild elephant, a wild horse, a wild bull, a wild dog, a snake, a stump, a bramble patch, a chasm, a cliff, a cesspool, an open sewer. Reflecting appropriately, he avoids sitting in the sorts of unsuitable seats, wandering to the sorts of unsuitable habitats, and associating with the sorts of bad friends that would make his knowledgeable friends in the holy life suspect him of evil conduct. The fermentations, vexation, or fever that would arise if he were not to avoid these things do not arise for him when he avoids them. These are called the fermentations to be abandoned by avoiding.


(Btw: it shows well the taking on dukkha in a huge amout, that is not to be seen as to be not the path)

That means here in this case sample: avoiding to answer questions out of "compassion" when knowing that among Outcasts, liking to help them.

Aside of this suggestion and explaining why to avoid certain unpleasant things, the path till Samma Samadhi is all about gaining pleasure, sukha, but a pleasure that does neither harm one self, nor others, and a pleasure tgat is righteous gained an does not depend on other.

By sticking to precepts (this includes here in our on side case respect) one is free of remorse:

Quote
The rewards of virtue

[Ananda:] "What, O Venerable One, is the reward and blessing of wholesome morality?"

[The Buddha:] "Freedom from remorse, Ananda."

"And of freedom from remorse?"

"Joy, Ananda"

"And of joy?"

"Rapture, Ananda"

"And of rapture?"

"Tranquillity, Ananda."

"And of tranquillity?"

"Happiness, Ananda." (Sukha)

"And of happiness?"

"Concentration, Ananda."

"And of concentration?"

"Vision and knowledge according to reality."

"And of the vision and knowledge according to reality?"

"Turning away and detachment, Ananda."

"And of turning away and detachment?"

"The vision and knowledge with regard to Deliverance, Ananda."

— AN 10.1 (Nyanatiloka, trans.; from Path to Deliverance, pp. 65-66)


Sukha, as we see, is the prerequisite for concentration, without pleasure, there is no renouncing, no going forth and no liberation.

But it is importand, that we gain pītī, being a prerequisite of sukha, not by pleasant words, but by true words. While pleasant food on the six senses just causes the increase of greed and pride, this the matter when in contact with pleasant sound for the wordling, touch of truth causes, when really touched, piti, which is traditional translated as "saturated, full, well-set" rather than the use of the word joy, already pointing on sukha.

So the practice you learn is to train you to get full, be fed up. And the food for it are the fourty kammaṭṭhāna.

There is maybe a chance that Rahul can fed up with this food here, if it touches the base where wisdom aroses. If he is just touched on avija, it will stay in the circle of rebirth and my being touched there will give cause, by aversion, greed or delusion, for grasping, holding on...

If touched proper intelkectually, he will develooe faith and eventually put the heard into action to see for himself, by gotten fed up, the cause of release.

Some like pleasure by music, some by "ego" and "idea" conforming words, not different both inclinations, both still avoid the assumed dukkha, coming from not conforming of ones confused views and the gifts of truth. By truth defilement feel endangered, by truth defilements are hurt, by truth defilement could be distroyed.

And if playing music, caught up with villagers, one might always end up like Cacofonix.



since villagers are not up to release but celebrate pleasure, pride and giving food exchange for identification and all kinds of means for low concentrations.

So, that is why only the bardsongs of the guardians will (for a short while) remain, till also those will have disappeared. Listen well and with proper attention!

(Btw. Listen to "music" with proper attention, that causes samvega or "fear" in regard to the world, is not unwholesome and does not break the precepts perse.)

As for when he started to recomment sticking to pleasure? Right before his awakening, remember Jhana he did as a child, and asking "could this be the way" he followed it and found release.

Anumodana!
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Offline Samana Johann

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2017, 11:52:05 pm »
And direct to Rahul, he might reflect and act, being really in affliction eith Rahula, in regard of training and nourishing on joy:

Quote
  Instructions to Rahula at Mango Stone

"While you are doing a mental action, you should reflect on it: 'This mental action I am doing — is it leading to self-affliction, to the affliction of others, or to both? Is it an unskillful mental action, with painful consequences, painful results?' If, on reflection, you know that it is leading to self-affliction, to the affliction of others, or to both... you should give it up. But if on reflection you know that it is not... you may continue with it.

"Having done a mental action, you should reflect on it: 'This mental action I have done — did it lead to self-affliction, to the affliction of others, or to both? Was it an unskillful mental action, with painful consequences, painful results?' If, on reflection, you know that it led to self-affliction, to the affliction of others, or to both; it was an unskillful mental action with painful consequences, painful results, then you should feel distressed, ashamed, & disgusted with it. Feeling distressed, ashamed, & disgusted with it, you should exercise restraint in the future. But if on reflection you know that it did not lead to affliction... it was a skillful mental action with pleasant consequences, pleasant results, then you should stay mentally refreshed & joyful, training day & night in skillful mental qualities.

"Rahula, all those brahmans & contemplatives in the course of the past who purified their bodily actions, verbal actions, & mental actions, did it through repeated reflection on their bodily actions, verbal actions, & mental actions in just this way.
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Offline Rahul

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2017, 01:56:01 am »

Aside of the fact, that you Rahul, out of you indention, out of unwholesome mindstate, out of simply disrespect, will not gain much from the unswer, since it can not be espected, that Rahul could be tamed, has even intention to get tamed, and that he actually already had the possibility by simply reading attentive, this answer with a sample in case is for those who are able to get healed:



Samana, judging me or anyone else is not helpful. When people question or doubt a concept of Buddhism, it doesn't necessarily mean they are trolling or showing disrespect. Most likely, people are questioning or doubting because they want to find out the truth and understand better.

Buddha himself advised to question and doubt everything and accept it only after verifying and having found it to be true. So what inspires you to judge people's queries and declaring them as 'having unwholesome mindstate' and 'out of simply disrespect'?

Offline Rahul

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2017, 02:03:01 am »
'Painful practice' apparently means Buddha's ascetic practices of self-mortification, starvation, afflicting pain, and incurring severe discomfort etc. Naturally, if someone presents the word 'pleasant practice' to contrast - to oppose - against the 'painful practice' i.e. self-mortification, it would be interpreted as practices that give bodily pleasure, and comfort, such as good food, comfortable bed, nice clothes... You see, Samana, the reason for misunderstanding here?

Offline VisuddhiRaptor

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2017, 02:13:22 am »
Aside of the fact, that you Rahul, out of your intention, out of unwholesome mindstate, out of simply disrespect, will not gain much from the answer, since it cannot be expected, that Rahul could be tamed, has even intention to get tamed...

Oh dear... :eek: :bigtears:

Offline Samana Johann

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2017, 02:14:32 am »

Samana, judging me or anyone else is not helpful. When people question or doubt a concept of Buddhism, it doesn't necessarily mean they are trolling or showing disrespect. Most likely, people are questioning or doubting because they want to find out the truth and understand better.

Some simply judge defilement. Understanding this might help. But as told already, the answer is of no fruit for Rahul. He is not even able to read it but concerns suddenly about his birth and becoming...
Buddha himself advised to question and doubt everything and accept it only after verifying and having found it to be true.
Who tell such?
So what inspires you to judge people's queries and declaring them as 'having unwholesome mindstate' and 'out of simply disrespect'?
Read the first link. There would be no teaching, if not an object that is worthy t receive.
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Offline VisuddhiRaptor

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2017, 02:16:39 am »
But as told already, the answer is of no fruit for Rahul. He is not even able to read it....

 :bigtears:  :eek:

Offline Samana Johann

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2017, 02:21:52 am »
Actually sad, but also sad to use such situations to gain and make enemies, have intentions to divide. No possiblility to help., taking right for wrong and wrong for right.
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Offline Rahul

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2017, 02:25:15 am »

Buddha himself advised to question and doubt everything and accept it only after verifying and having found it to be true.
Who tell such?
Kalama Sutta. Let me clarify again: Buddha advised not to accept any doctrine or theory just because it was told by a guru, or just because it's written in a scripture, etc. he advised that doctrines/theories/concepts must be accepted only if after questions, investigating, one finds it to be true.

Offline Samana Johann

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2017, 02:34:10 am »
As told already: lost, here lost in quotations.

Quote
"When you know for yourselves that, 'These dhammas are unskillful; these dhammas are blameworthy; these dhammas are criticized by the wise; these dhammas, when adopted & carried out, lead to harm & to suffering' — then you should abandon them."

"When you know for yourselves that, 'These dhammas are skillful; these dhammas are blameless; these dhammas are praised by the wise; these dhammas, when adopted & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness' — then you should enter & remain in them."


And a deeper A Look at the Kalama Sutta
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Offline VisuddhiRaptor

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #12 on: June 23, 2017, 02:36:33 am »
.... tamed, has even intention to get tamed ...

Sabhiya
Attaining what is one called a “bhikkhu”?
How is one “gentle” (sorataṃ)? And how “tamed” (dantamāhu)?
Why is one called “awakened” (buddhoti)?
Please answer me this question, Lord (Bhagavā).


Buddha
By the path they walked themselves,
Nirvāṇa is realized and doubt is left behind;
Existence (bhavañca) and non-existence (vibhavañca) have been abandoned,
Complete, having ended repeated becoming (­pu­nabbhavo): they are a “bhikkhu”.

Mindful and equanimous everywhere,
They do not harm anyone in the world;
An ascetic crossed over, without distress,
And with no vanity: they are “gentle” (sorato).

With faculties developed
For the whole world, inside and out;
They have understood this world and the other,
And complete their time fulfilled: they are “tamed” (danto).

Having thoroughly investigated the ages
Of travelled through both ascendancy and decline (cutūpapātaṃ),
Free of passion and defilements, pure,
Arrived at the end of (ego; atma) birth (jātikhayaṃ):
such is called “awakened” (buddhan).


 :fu:

Offline VisuddhiRaptor

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #13 on: June 23, 2017, 02:42:30 am »
When exactly did the Buddha 'recommend' pursuing pleasant practice? What were those 'pleasant' practices?

The Buddha recommended pleasant practices in his 1st sermon, namely, the cultivation of jhana.

 :namaste:

Offline Samana Johann

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Re: The Middles of the Middle Way - going beyond post-/householdermodern
« Reply #14 on: June 23, 2017, 02:55:29 am »
Hollymolly, does Visuddhiraptor really belive that there is a single person not seeing his falsehood and strategy. The foolish way he tries to win people is really cheap, hypocrisy, and ugly slimy. What a cheap show of a loser with all weapons to try to stay on the surface.

Well, the fool uses the Dhamma always as a weapon, takes the snake by the tail and will face it in his face.

Either by claiming or demanting outwardly, never would make use of it for himself for a benefit. Try to cry when it rips, if it will approach.

Not able to believe that someone is so silly to do not see such, it more to assume that a certain ventriloquist show to harm others is going on here.

Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta: The Greater Analysis of Action

Quote
Two lessons in the dangers of quick generalization. In the first, the Buddha points out that the perception of all feeling as stressful is not appropriate at all stages of the practice. In the second, he shows that generalizing too quickly on the basis of what one sees in meditation can lead to serious wrong view.


« Last Edit: June 23, 2017, 02:59:25 am by Samana Johann »
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