Author Topic: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?  (Read 4663 times)

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2010, 07:53:15 pm »
erm... stream-entrant: 'at most seven lifetimes', once-returner 'one lifetime' etc.
Translations are often not transparent.

Thanissaro states:

Quote
That which remains in the state of having at most seven remaining lifetimes is next to nothing: it's not a hundredth, a thousandth, a one hundred-thousandth, when compared with the previous mass of suffering.

Bodhi states:

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The later does not amount to a hundreth....etc...of the former mass of suffering that has been destroyed or eliminated, as there is a maximum of seven more lives.
These words make very little sense really.

In fact, in the Pali, the word "lives" or anything close to it does not even exist at all.

Quote
Neva [neither] satimaṃ [1/100] kalaṃ upeti na sahassimaṃ [1/1000] kalaṃ upeti na satasahassimaṃ [1/100,000] kalaṃ upeti purimaṃ dukkhakkhandhaṃ parikkhīṇaṃ pariyādiṇṇaṃ upanidhāya yadidaṃ sattakkhattuṃparamatā.

Neva (indecl.) [na+eva] see na2. -- nevasaññā -- nâsañña (being) neither perception nor non -- perception, only in cpd. ˚āyatana & in nevasaññī -- nâsaññin: see saññā.

Kalā [Vedic kalā *squel, to Lat scalpo, Gr. ska/llw, Ohg scolla, scilling, scala. The Dhtp. (no 613) expls kala by "sankhyāne."] 1. a small fraction of a whole

Upeti [upa + i] to go to (with acc.), come to, approach, undergo, attain

Purima (adj.) [compar. -- superl. formation fr. *pura, cp. Sk. purima] preceding, former, earlier, before (opp. pacchima)

dukkhakkhandhaŋ vyapānudi Th 2, 162. -- (b) lobha˚ dosa˚ moha˚ the three ingredients or integrations of greed, suffering and bewilderment, lit. "the big bulk or mass of greed"

Parikkhīṇa [pp. of parikkhīyati] exhausted, wasted, decayed, extinct

Upanidhāya (indecl.) [ger. of upa + nidahati of dhā] comparing in comparison, as prep. w. acc. "compared with"

Yadi (indecl.) [adv. formation, orig. loc., fr. yaËš; cp. Vedic yadi] 1. as conjunction: if;

yadi evaŋ if so, in that case, let it be that, alright, now then

yadidaṃ = that is, “i.e.”

Sattakkhattuŋ (adv.) [cp. tikkhattuŋ etc.] seven times

Paramatā (f.) [fr. parama, Vedic paramatā highest posi- tion] the highest quantity, measure on the outside, minimum or maximum

 :dharma:


 
« Last Edit: April 17, 2010, 08:15:35 pm by ABC »
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2010, 08:03:38 pm »
In fact, in the Pali, the word "lives" or anything close to it does not even exist at all.

The actual discourse, namely, the Nakhasikha Sutta, is about how the stream-enterer has made a break-through by cutting three fetters. It states:

Quote
"In the same way, monks, for a disciple of the noble ones who is consummate in view, an individual who has broken through [to stream-entry], the suffering & stress that is totally ended & extinguished is far greater.


If we accord to Dhamma theory, what appears to be said here is the stream enterer must break through for a maximum of seven more times.

This means there are seven more fetters for the stream enterer to cut.

Apart from that, there is no mention of "lives" in the sutta.

The standard Pali that is (inaccurately) translated as "lives" is nivāsaṃ.

Nivāsa [fr. nivasati2] stopping, dwelling, resting-- place, abode; living, sheltering

 ;D
« Last Edit: April 17, 2010, 08:16:38 pm by ABC »
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2010, 08:12:49 pm »
ah, ok. We're in agreement there then.

Tbh, even if he did, I imagine it would be along the lines of ''do what you're doing now, only better' anyway.


ah..ok. We're in disagreement there then.  :teehee:

I imagine it would be along the lines of:

Quote
155. Those who in youth have not led the holy life, or have failed to acquire wealth, languish like old cranes in the pond without fish.

156. Those who in youth have not lead the holy life, or have failed to acquire wealth, lie sighing over the past, like worn out arrows (shot from) a bow.

Jaravagga: Old Age



 ;D
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #18 on: April 18, 2010, 02:16:46 am »
The standard Pali that is (inaccurately) translated as "lives" is nivāsaṃ.
Nivāsa [fr. nivasati2] stopping, dwelling, resting-- place, abode; living, sheltering

I don't see the inconsistency here.  This is like arguing that in the second Noble Truth "tanha" really means "thirst", rather than "craving" - it's missing the point that meaning always requires context.

Spiny

 

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #19 on: April 18, 2010, 02:58:32 am »
If you've not done so, I recommend having a look at Payutto's essay on D.O.

http://www.buddhanet.net/cmdsg/coarise5.htm

Metta,
Retro. :)



Thanks, here's the beginning of that section of the essay:

"The description of Dependent Origination given in the previous chapter is that most often found in the scriptures and commentaries. It seeks to explain Dependent Origination in terms of the samsaravatta, the round of rebirth, showing the connections between three lifetimes -- the past, the present and the future.
Those who do not agree with this interpretation, or who would prefer something more immediate, can find alternatives not only in the Abhidhamma Pitaka, where the principle of Dependent Origination is shown occurring in its entirety in one mind moment, but can also interpret the very same words of the Buddha used to support the standard model in a different light, giving a very different picture of the principle of Dependent Origination, one which is supported by teachings and scriptural references from other sources."


I haven't come across the description of DO occuring in its entirety in one mind moment in the Abhidhamma Pitaka - do you know whereabouts this occurs?
He also says that this alternative picture of DO is supported by teachings and scriptural references from other sources - like what, I wonder?  This sounds very vague to me.
Anyway, it's certainly interesting.

Spiny

Offline aquason

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #20 on: May 04, 2010, 12:45:55 am »
The Mahanidhana Sutta is about DO. But I personally find the discussion in it about consciousness and nama-rupa unhelpful.

It is one thing to say consciousness depends on having a body-mind and the awareness of a body-mind depends on consciousness. That I can accept fully.

The Mahanidhana Sutta states about nama-rupa:

Quote
...the qualities, traits, themes & indicators by which there is a description...



OK. Whilst the others suttas do not describe nama-rupa like this, I can accept it for practical purposes. The mind has the capacity to name, describe or perceive things. This is the classic Hindu definition of nama-rupa, literally, 'naming'.

The sutta then states about consciousness:

Quote
If consciousness were not to descend into [or develop in] the mother's womb, would name-and-form take shape in the womb?"


"No, lord."


"If, after descending into [or developing in] the womb, consciousness were to depart, would name-and-form be produced for this world?"


"No, lord."


"If the consciousness of the young boy or girl were to be cut off, would name-and-form ripen, grow and reach maturity?"


"No, lord."

 "Thus this is a cause, this is a reason, this is an origination, this is a requisite condition for name-and-form, i.e., consciousness."



Now, I have examined the Pali and the word 'womb' is definitely used here.

 I ask, what exactly is being said above? Is it other view of creation like the Christian view of creation that contradicts science.


For example, an embryo proabably has a very primitive consciousness, probably like a jelly fish. An embryo is so inseparable from the mother, most of its development is probably physical rather than something mental.

 

For example, some embryos develop until birth, to a full-size baby, but are still-born without any breathing or consciousness. Whilst I am not a biologist, the development of an embryo seems mostly physical.

 

Further, as nama-rupa was defined in the Mahanidana Sutta as naming or description, how can an embryo describe or name? The mentality of an embryo is too primitive to be naming & describing experience.

 

Then how can consciousness depart from a womb? How strange.

 

Then in a young boy or girl, how exactly is consciousness cut off? For example, if a young boy or girl becomes blind, deaf or comatose, of course they will cease to name or describe things. But the sutta states "would name-and-form ripen, grow and reach maturity?"

 

On other words, the sutta in talking about "maturity", appears to be inferring the maturity of the body rather than "naming' or "description". Thus, the Mahanidana Sutta appears to be contradicting itself.

 

To me, unless I am missing something, it makes no sense to me.

 

Buddha's do not speak in ways that are incomprehensible or illogical.

 

A Buddha speaks the Dhamma perfectly (svakato bhagavata dhammo).


 :suit:


Yes. Here's a link to a translation by Bhikkhu Bodhi.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/dn/dn.15.0.than.html

Buddha is questioning here the Venerable Ananda in response to his thought that this dependent origination is profound, but appears to him as clear as clear.

Buddha says this dependent origination is profound and appears profound.

He questions the Ven. Ananda about the root, the cause, the origin, the condition for this series of states including the root, the cause, the origion, the condition for mentality and form and the answer to the Great Man's quizzing in this case involves the conception and gestation process.

"If consciousness were cut off" refers to more than only the eye or ear or only some other of the types of consciousness associated with the 6 bases because there are both blind and deaf people who are born and live a full life span.

Consciousness in this usage refers to something that has to do with the conception and pregnancy process and if that consciousness were cut off would mentality and form grow, develope, and mature? No replied the Venerable Ananda. Therefore just this is the root, the cause, the origin, the condition for mentality and form namely consciousness.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2010, 12:51:23 am by aquason »

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #21 on: May 04, 2010, 08:04:14 pm »
Buddha says this dependent origination is profound and appears profound.
DO is not so profound to be out of reach. In MN 115, the Buddha states a wise person is skilled in DO. It is profound to some degree but not to the degree of being impractical.  

Quote
"If consciousness were cut off" refers to more than only the eye or ear or only some other of the types of consciousness associated with the 6 bases because there are both blind and deaf people who are born and live a full life span.
The suttas only refer to consciousness associated with the 6 bases. Consciousness itself is vinnana or cognition. It is not jiva or life force.

Quote
Consciousness in this usage refers to something that has to do with the conception and pregnancy process and if that consciousness were cut off would mentality and form grow, develope, and mature?

Thank you for your efforts but you have added nothing here. You have answered my question with the same question I asked.

An embryo probably does not have cognition beyond that of a jellyfish. No sophisticated consciousness would be required to develop an embryo.

 ;D
« Last Edit: May 04, 2010, 08:09:45 pm by ABC »
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline aquason

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #22 on: May 05, 2010, 02:23:24 am »
Quote
Thank you for your efforts. you have added nothing here.


Additionally, from the same discourse, these are catagorized as 7 stations of consciousness through to the base of nothingness.
Quote
Seven Stations of Consciousness
"Ananda, there are these seven stations of consciousness and two spheres. Which seven?

"There are beings with diversity of body and diversity of perception, such as human beings, some devas, and some beings in the lower realms. This is the first station of consciousness.

"There are beings with diversity of body and singularity of perception, such as the devas of the Brahma hosts generated by the first [jhana] and some beings in the four realms of deprivation. This is the second station of consciousness. 2

"There are beings with singularity of body and diversity of perception, such as the Radiant Devas. This is the third station of consciousness.

"There are beings with singularity of body and singularity of perception, such as the Beautifully Lustrous Devas. This is the fourth station of consciousness.

"There are beings who,with the complete transcending of perceptions of [physical] form, with the disappearance of perceptions of resistance, and not heeding perceptions of diversity, [perceiving,] 'Infinite space,' arrive at the dimension of the infinitude of space. This is the fifth station of consciousness.

"There are beings who, with the complete transcending of the dimension of the infinitude of space, [perceiving,] 'Infinite consciousness,' arrive at the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness. This is the sixth station of consciousness.

"There are beings who, with the complete transcending of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness, [perceiving,] 'There is nothing,' arrive at the dimension of nothingness. This is the seventh station of consciousness.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2010, 02:25:47 am by aquason »

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #23 on: May 05, 2010, 03:14:18 am »
So what?

Where else are the seven stations of consciousness found in the suttas?

If only here then this is another arguement against the Buddha speaking this sutta.

Why would the Buddha speak about seven station of consciousness where there are at least ten, namely, ordinary, eight jhanas, cessation of perception & feeling.

Regardless, the last eight stations are merely consciousness functioning via the mind sense door.

They still fit within the six sense consciousness.

However, because this sutta is incomplete, just like the dependent origination is incomplete without the sense bases, the Buddha could not have spoken it i say.

 :r4wheel:



Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline aquason

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #24 on: May 05, 2010, 03:58:42 am »
So what?

Where else are the seven stations of consciousness found in the suttas?

If only here then this is another arguement against the Buddha speaking this sutta.

Why would the Buddha speak about seven station of consciousness where there are at least ten, namely, ordinary, eight jhanas, cessation of perception & feeling.

Regardless, the last eight stations are merely consciousness functioning via the mind sense door.

They still fit within the six sense consciousness.

However, because this sutta is incomplete, just like the dependent origination is incomplete without the sense bases, the Buddha could not have spoken it i say.

 :r4wheel:





Long Discourses of the Buddha #33 section of the 7's. Long Discourses of the Buddha #34 7 things to be fully understood.

Like in MLD#115 where many things get catergorized as elements so too there are a number of things that get catergorized as consciousness.

Sometimes the Buddha varies the series a little bit about dependent orginition. This can give us an opportunity to reflect more deeply on the series of phenomena he is describing and how to root out suffering. For more on dependent origination one may examine Connected Discourses of the Buddha Chapter 12.

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #25 on: May 05, 2010, 05:15:30 am »
Like in MLD#115 where many things get catergorized as elements so too there are a number of things that get catergorized as consciousness.
Actually, only six things here in MN 115 get categorised as consciousness.
Quote
"There are, Ananda, these eighteen elements: the eye element, the form element, the eye-consciousness element; the ear element, the sound element, the ear-consciousness element; the nose element, the odor element, the nose-consciousness element; the tongue element, the flavor element, the tongue-consciousness element; the body element, the tangible element, the body-consciousness element; the mind element, the mind-object element, the mind-consciousness element. When he knows and sees these eighteen elements, a monk can be called skilled in the elements.

MN 115

Quote
Sometimes the Buddha varies the series a little bit about dependent orginition. This can give us an opportunity to reflect more deeply on the series of phenomena he is describing and how to root out suffering. For more on dependent origination one may examine Connected Discourses of the Buddha Chapter 12.
Not in the way you are inferring.

The Buddha sometimes starts with contact, sometimes with ignorance at contact,  etc.

But only in a logical harmonious way.

Buddha would not start from consciousness with all links to dukkha but leave out the sense bases.

Also, a duplicate reference in the DN does not count.

Many scholars have dismissed much of the DN outright as being Buddha-Vaca.

 ;D
« Last Edit: May 05, 2010, 05:17:23 am by ABC »
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline aquason

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #26 on: May 07, 2010, 03:31:14 am »
Like in MLD#115 where many things get catergorized as elements so too there are a number of things that get catergorized as consciousness.
Actually, only six things here in MN 115 get categorised as consciousness.
Quote
"There are, Ananda, these eighteen elements: the eye element, the form element, the eye-consciousness element; the ear element, the sound element, the ear-consciousness element; the nose element, the odor element, the nose-consciousness element; the tongue element, the flavor element, the tongue-consciousness element; the body element, the tangible element, the body-consciousness element; the mind element, the mind-object element, the mind-consciousness element. When he knows and sees these eighteen elements, a monk can be called skilled in the elements.

 MLD# 115

Quote
Sometimes the Buddha varies the series a little bit about dependent orginition. This can give us an opportunity to reflect more deeply on the series of phenomena he is describing and how to root out suffering. For more on dependent origination one may examine Connected Discourses of the Buddha Chapter 12.
Not in the way you are inferring.

The Buddha sometimes starts with contact, sometimes with ignorance at contact,  etc.

But only in a logical harmonious way.

Buddha would not start from consciousness with all links to dukkha but leave out the sense bases.

Also, a duplicate reference in the DN does not count.

Many scholars have dismissed much of the DN outright as being Buddha-Vaca.

 ;D


from MLD#115

Quote
At one time the Blessed One lived in the monastery offered by Anaathapindika in Jeta’s grove in Saavatthi. From there the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus. ‘Whatever fears, misfortunes and dangers arise, they all arise from the foolish not from the wise. Thus bhikkhus, the foolish are with fears, miisfortunes and dangers.Therefore bhikkhus, to become wise inquirers, you should train thus.

When this was said, venerable Aananda asked the Blessed One, ‘Venerable sir, saying it rightly how does the wise bhikkhu become an inquirer?’

‘Aananda, when the bhikkhu becomes clever, in the elements, in the spheres, in dependent arising and in the possible and impossible, he becomes an inquirer’

‘Venerable sir, saying it rightly how is the wise bhikkhu clever in the elements?’

‘Aananda, there are eighteen elements. They are the elements of eye, forms and eye consciousness; ear, sounds, and ear consciousness; nose, scents and nose consciousness; tongue, tastes and tongue consciousness; body, touches and body consciousness; mind, ideas and mind consciousness. Aananda, these are the eighteen elements, when the bhikkhu knows and sees them, he becomes clever in the elements.

‘Venerable sir, is there another method through which the bhikkhu becomes clever in the elements?’

‘There is a method. The bhikkhu becomes clever in the six elements, such as the elements of earth, water, fire, air, space and consciousness Aananda, these are the six elements, when the bhikkhu knows and sees them, saying it rightly he becomes clever in the elements’.

‘Venerable sir, is there another method through which the bhikkhu becomes clever in the elements?’

‘There is a method.These six are the elements of pleasantness, unpleasantness, pleasure, displeasure, equanimity and ignorance, when the bhikkhu knows and sees them, saying it rightly he becomes clever in the elements’

‘Venerable sir, is there another method through which the bhikkhu becomes clever in the elements?’

‘There is a method.These six are the elements of sensuality, non sensuality, anger, non anger, hurting and non hurting, when the bhikkhu knows and sees them, saying it rightly he becomes clever in the elements’

‘Venerable sir, is there another method through which the bhikkhu becomes clever in the elements?’

‘There is a method.These three are the elements, of sensuality, materiality and immateriality, when the bhikkhu knows and sees them, sayingit rightly he becomes clever in the elements.’

‘Venerable sir, is there another method through which the bhikkhu becomes clever in the elements?’

‘There is a method.These two are the elements, such as the compounded and the uncompounded elementwhen the bhikkhu knows and sees them, saying it rightly he becomes clever in the elements.’

I noted 41 elements including the element of consciouness with earth, water, heat, air, and space elements like in MLD#140.

When Buddha Gotama was recollecting the contemplation of the Bodhisatta Vipassai 91 aeons ago prior to the Bodhisatta Vipassai becoming a Samma Sambuddha he recollected his contemplation of ageing and death back to mentality and form together with consciousness.

At a later time he contemplated the rise and fall of the 5 aggregates affected by clinging thus: such is form, such the arising of form, such the cessation of form, such is feeling, such the arising of feeling, such the cessation of feeling, such is perception, such is the arising of perception, such the cessation of perception, such are formations, such the arising of formations, such the cessation of formations, such is consciousnes, such the arising of consciousness, such the cessation of consciousness.

The he became an Arahant Samma Sambuddha. With the arising of the third vijja he abandoned ignorance and with the abandoning of ignorance he then attained the deathless.

Dependent origination is such a commonly discussed subject with Buddha Gotama. I believe the occasional variations in the series are intentional with the highlighting of various aspects of the specific discourse.

If mentality and form is completely uprooted and there is no contact then the sixfold base is uprooted, with the complete uprooting of the sixfold base contact is uprooted. So this has given us the opportunity to reflect on the uprooting of suffering.

Long Discourses of the Buddha has been recited along with the other suttas at all of the Buddhist Council Reciting Events.

« Last Edit: May 07, 2010, 03:36:08 am by aquason »

Offline retrofuturist

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #27 on: May 07, 2010, 03:52:01 am »
Greetings ABC,

Many scholars have dismissed much of the DN outright as being Buddha-Vaca.

 ;D
Do you know who? Any links or references to their claims you may have would be greatly appreciated.

Metta,
Retro. :)

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #28 on: May 07, 2010, 04:19:57 am »
Acquason

What are you trying to say?

MN 115 mentions six consciousness.

When it mentions consciousness as part of six elements, this is a broad delineation of phenomena.

In others words, physical, space & mind.

 :listen:
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Offline ABC

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Re: Did the Buddha speak the Maha-nidana Sutta?
« Reply #29 on: May 07, 2010, 04:26:41 am »
If mentality and form is completely uprooted and there is no contact then the sixfold base is uprooted, with the complete uprooting of the sixfold base contact is uprooted. So this has given us the opportunity to reflect on the uprooting of suffering.
Suffering is something mental.

When suffering ends, the six-fold sense base remains. The suttas state:

Quote
"He discerns that 'Whatever disturbances that would exist based on the effluent of sensuality... the effluent of becoming... the effluent of ignorance, are not present. And there is only this modicum of disturbance: that connected with the six sensory spheres, dependent on this very body with life as its condition.' And so this, his entry into emptiness, accords with actuality, is undistorted in meaning, pure — superior & unsurpassed.

MN 122

When the Buddha taught nirodha, he taught about the extinguishing of the fires of greed, hatred & delusion.

When the six-fold sense experiences nirodha, this means they no longer are affected by greed, hatred & delusion.

 :eek:
« Last Edit: May 07, 2010, 04:48:50 am by ABC »
Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

 


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