Author Topic: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental) question.  (Read 2204 times)

Offline Issa

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2014, 11:51:44 am »

http://obo.genaud.net/dhammatalk/dhammatalk_forum/dhamma_talk/dt_009.conditioned.vs.own-made.htm


Further, the writer states:

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The result is complete and utter detachment from everything whatsoever. If, while experiencing this experience of the freedom of utter detachment one realizes that this is the freedom one has been seeking, then one may say one has eliminated blindness, ended own-making, and has attained Nibbana.

One can now see that according to the terminology just used, one can say that the attaining of Nibbana is conditioned but that it is not own-made.


When the mind lets go, this is not exactly Nibbana. Letting go is letting go. Nibbana is what is there when the mind lets go. Nibbana is something distinct from letting go or detachment. Nibbana is peace. Nibbana is coolness.

More analogies. Say one falls over a cliff but catches a branch of a tree at the top of the cliff. If one lets go of the branch, one will surely plummet to one's death. Nibbana is not like this. Or say it is 120 degrees outside and one opens the window of an air conditioned car. Nibbana is not like this.

In Dhamma reality, when the mind lets go or opens itself, there is something there that is a refuge, that is peace, that is cool, that is beautiful. This is Nibbana.

Many fear to let go because they fear there is an abyss there. This is not Nibbana. Nibbana is not an abyss but, instead, like cool refreshing water.

 :namaste:

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Bhikkhus, I will teach you the taintless and the path leading to the taintless.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the truth and the path leading to the truth.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the far shore and the path leading to the far shore.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the subtle and the path leading to the subtle.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the very difficult to see and the path leading to the very difficult to see.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unaging and the path leading to the unaging.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the stable and the path leading to the stable.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the undisintegrating and the path leading to the undisintegrating.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unmanifest and the path leading to the unmanifest.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unproliferated and the path leading to the unproliferated.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the peaceful and the path leading to the peaceful.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the deathless and the path leading to the deathless.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the sublime and the path leading to the sublime.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the auspicious and the path leading to the auspicious.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the secure and the path leading to the secure.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the destruction of craving and the path leading to the destruction of craving.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the wonderful and the path leading to the wonderful.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the amazing and the path leading to the amazing.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unailing and the path leading to the unailing.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unailing state and the path leading to the unailing state.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the Nibbana and the path leading to the Nibbana.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unafflicted and the path leading to the unafflicted.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the dispassion and the path leading to the dispassion.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the purity and the path leading to the purity.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the freedom and the path leading to the freedom.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the unadhesive and the path leading to the unadhesive.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the island and the path leading to the island.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the shelter and the path leading to the shelter.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the asylum and the path leading to the asylum.

Bhikkhus, I will teach you the refuge and the path leading to the refuge.

Samyutta Nikaya 43. 14 - 43


Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #16 on: November 27, 2014, 12:15:27 pm »
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Why? Why can't the old scriptures form part of the debate?  :curtain:

You're not debating it... you're dictating it like parrot.

Then you make comments like this:

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When the mind lets go, this is not exactly Nibbana. Letting go is letting go. Nibbana is what is there when the mind lets go. Nibbana is something distinct from letting go or detachment. Nibbana is peace. Nibbana is coolness.

Your definition of nibbana is certainly conditioned, no different than one who has experienced nibbana in the present moment, the here-and-now so to speak.



Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #17 on: November 27, 2014, 04:20:36 pm »
For anyone who would like a more well-rounded understanding about the debate, I would recommend that they read the following dissertation which is available as a free ebook through Google:


Nibbāna as True Reality beyond the Debate
by Potprecha Cholvijarn

http://books.google.com/books?id=FkXJVKnjw3kC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false


Beyond that, there's also a debate among secularists, so that might be worth checking out as well:

http://secularbuddhism.org/2013/05/17/two-issues-with-nibbana/


Offline Issa

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #18 on: November 28, 2014, 02:35:57 am »

Your definition of nibbana is certainly conditioned, no different than one who has experienced nibbana in the present moment, the here-and-now so to speak.

It is not conditioned. The analogy was already provided about opening a window in a hot room to let cool air in. Opening the window is conditioned. The cool air having a cool nature is independent of the window.  :om:

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #19 on: November 28, 2014, 05:14:16 am »
First of all, you continue to fail to recognize a distinction sa-upadisesa-nibbana and an-upadisesa-nibbana, the condition of nibbana with remainder and the other without remainder --- secondly, you claim to be "debating"  this, but clearly this is not the case because you've repeatedly demonstrated that you didn't understand Ron's own comments, or mine for that matter.

I don't mean to come across condescending, but the fact of the matter is that you don't even know what the debate is about in the first place, and that speaks for itself:

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The Postulation of Unconditioned Dharmas

Another Abhidharmist modification is the postulation that there are aspects of reality, or dharmas, which are unconditioned, namely nibbana and akaga (space). This represents a shift in the usage of the term asankhata (Sanskrit: asamskrta). In the earlier scriptures sankhata means "put together," "compounded," "organized" — and therefore subject to dissolution. The word did not mean conditioned, nor did its opposite, asankhata (applied to nibbana) mean unconditioned. Indeed nothing is seen in the early texts as unconditioned, removed from the realm of causality. As Kalupahana asserts, the pre-Abhidharmist texts qualify no entity, essence, or state as apaticca samuppanna. Nor is emancipation in the early texts presented as an escape from causality. It is reached rather by employing causation, by using the leverage of conditionality. Nibbana is presented as attainable, not by exiting from the series of conditioned nidanas, but by substituting through practice nirodha for samudaya. "I say that liberation is causally associated, not uncausally associated," said the Buddha.

With the Abhidharma asankhata begins to be used to denote "unconditioned," as is evident, for example, in the classification of dharmas in the Dhammasamatri. There, only nibbana is in that category, while the lists of other schools include akaga as well. As such, the meaning of asankhata comes to be used synonymously with ahetujam, "not the product of a cause." This move is understandable in terms of the shift toward a more substantialist and linear view, where effects preexist in their causes, and are produced by them. Since nibbana cannot be produced in this way, it is imagined that it must then be removed completely from the causal realm — and posited as unconditioned. Such a move encourages interpretations which tend to equate nibbana with a metaphysical absolute. It also has the effect of taking release and assigning it to another dimension than the world of contingency and need in which we live. That this shift has influenced scholars' views of Buddhist teachings as a whole is evident in Conze, who states that it is "the basic teaching of the Buddha" that "salvation can only be found through escape to the Unconditioned."

Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory
by Joanna Macy (SUNY Press)
pp60-61




Offline Issa

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication
« Reply #20 on: November 28, 2014, 12:32:25 pm »
First of all, you continue to fail to recognize a distinction sa-upadisesa-nibbana and an-upadisesa-nibbana, the condition of nibbana with remainder and the other without remainder --- secondly, you claim to be "debating"  this, but clearly this is not the case because you've repeatedly demonstrated that you didn't understand Ron's own comments, or mine for that matter.

I don't mean to come across condescending, but the fact of the matter is that you don't even know what the debate is about in the first place, and that speaks for itself:


Thank you. But I have not failed anything. Both are Nibbana. The Nibbana with remainder (i.e., with feeling/vedana) is the primary Nibbana referred to in the scriptures. Where as Nibbana without remainder is mentioned rarely & is not something experienced. Instead, it is merely a reflection upon death (MN 140). The ultimate goal is to experience Nibbana (MN 29 & 30). The Dhamma of the Lord Buddha is something experienced by the wise (sanditthiko akliko epassiko oanayiko pacattam veditabbo vinnuhi ti).  :namaste:


Offline Issa

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #21 on: November 28, 2014, 12:41:15 pm »

Another Abhidharmist modification is the postulation that there are aspects of reality, or dharmas, which are unconditioned, namely nibbana and akaga (space). This represents a shift in the usage of the term asankhata (Sanskrit: asamskrta). In the earlier scriptures sankhata means "put together," "compounded," "organized" — and therefore subject to dissolution. The word did not mean conditioned, nor did its opposite, asankhata (applied to nibbana) mean unconditioned. Indeed nothing is seen in the early texts as unconditioned, removed from the realm of causality. As Kalupahana asserts, the pre-Abhidharmist texts qualify no entity, essence, or state as apaticca samuppanna. Nor is emancipation in the early texts presented as an escape from causality. It is reached rather by employing causation, by using the leverage of conditionality. Nibbana is presented as attainable, not by exiting from the series of conditioned nidanas, but by substituting through practice nirodha for samudaya. "I say that liberation is causally associated, not uncausally associated," said the Buddha.

With the Abhidharma asankhata begins to be used to denote "unconditioned," as is evident, for example, in the classification of dharmas in the Dhammasamatri. There, only nibbana is in that category, while the lists of other schools include akaga as well. As such, the meaning of asankhata comes to be used synonymously with ahetujam, "not the product of a cause." This move is understandable in terms of the shift toward a more substantialist and linear view, where effects preexist in their causes, and are produced by them. Since nibbana cannot be produced in this way, it is imagined that it must then be removed completely from the causal realm — and posited as unconditioned. Such a move encourages interpretations which tend to equate nibbana with a metaphysical absolute. It also has the effect of taking release and assigning it to another dimension than the world of contingency and need in which we live. That this shift has influenced scholars' views of Buddhist teachings as a whole is evident in Conze, who states that it is "the basic teaching of the Buddha" that "salvation can only be found through escape to the Unconditioned."

Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory
by Joanna Macy (SUNY Press)
pp60-61


Kalupahana is clearly incorrect, as follows:

Quote
There is, bhikkhus, a not-born, a not-brought-to-being, a not-made, a not-conditioned. If, bhikkhus, there were no not-born, not-brought-to-being, not-made, not-conditioned, no escape would be discerned from what is born, brought-to-being, made, conditioned. But since there is a not-born, a not-brought-to-being, a not-made, a not-conditioned, therefore an escape is discerned from what is born, brought-to-being, made, conditioned.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/ud/ud.8.03.irel.html


As for Macy, she is stuck in literalist words, when focusing on the phrase:
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"Emancipation, monks, also has a supporting condition, I say, it does not lack a supporting condition. And what is the supporting condition for emancipation? 'Dispassion' should be the reply.


When the conditioned sankharas dissolve (via nirodha), something remains. What remains is not caused by the dissolution. It is merely uncovered by the dissolution.  :namaste:
« Last Edit: November 28, 2014, 12:45:09 pm by Issa »

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #22 on: November 28, 2014, 05:35:31 pm »
Congratulations... that's an excellent rebuttle, very good indeed, but it raises several questions if we're actually debating this:

What's the actual pali wording that's been translated? If this had been an actual debate you would be required to enter both.

As for Macy, you state that she's stuck in literalist words, but why is this not the same with you? For example, you have a vested interest in proving that nibanna is unconditioned and only unconditioned (aka, the "metaphysical absolute"), leaving no room for the possibility that sa-upadisesa-nibbana is conditioned, while an-upadisesa-nibbana is unconditioned.

Of course, on the surface that would be speculative at best, but is it any less speculative than saying that nibbana is only unconditioned? I'm asking this particular question on the grounds that nibbana is understood to be beyond mere words to begin with, so in such a manner it might in fact be inappropriate to say "conditioned" and/or "unconditioned" --- both are words, both are conceptions and so forth.

In a nut shell, it's kind of hard to argue that there isn't an "object" and "conditioning agent" when it comes sa-upadisesa-nibbana, just as it's hard to argue that the concept of nibbana in and of itself isn't a construct that has developed over the years --- mind you, regardless of the fact that its beyond words --- yet in the greater scheme of things, does it really matter whether nibanna is conditioned or unconditioned if it's being placed beyond our reach, or as Macy says,  if it's being assigned to another dimension other than the world of contingency and need?

When the conditioned sankharas dissolve (via nirodha), something remains. What remains is not caused by the dissolution. It is merely uncovered by the dissolution.  :namaste:


It might be more appropriate to say that what remains is not caused by the dissolution, but is conditioned (not uncovered) by the dissolution,  otherwise the Dhamma of the Lord Buddha would not be experienced by the wise  :namaste:

--------------

Considering the broad and breadth of the topic of Nibbana/Nirvana, it might be beneficial to provide a recap of sorts --- although I'm not preferential in selecting this as a resource, the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy (IEP) is as good as any other:

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Nirvana and the Silence of the Buddha

a. Two Kinds of Nirvana and the Undetermined Questions

When the fires of craving, aversion, and ignorance are extinguished at the moment of enlightenment, the aggregates are liberated due to the lack of grasping. This is technically called nirvana with remainder of grasping (saupādisesa-nibbāna), or as later tradition puts it, nirvana of mental defilements (kilesa-parinibbāna). The expression ‘remainder of grasping’ refers to the five aggregates of liberated beings, which continue to live after enlightenment but without negative mental states.

The aggregates of the liberated beings perform their respective functions and, like the aggregates of anybody else, they grow old, get sick, and are subject to pleasant and unpleasant sensations until death. The difference between unenlightened and enlightened beings is that enlightened beings respond to sensations without craving or aversion, and with higher knowledge of the true nature of the five aggregates.

The definition of nirvana without remainder (anupādisesa-nibbāna) that appears in (It 38) only says that for the liberated being “all that is experienced here and now, without enchantment [another term for grasping], will be cooled (sīta).” Since “all” is defined in the Pāli Nikāyas as the six senses and their six objects (S.IV.15), which is another way of describing the individual psychophysical experience or the five aggregates, the expression “all that is experienced” refers to what happens to the aggregates of liberated beings. Since (It 38) explicitly uses the expression “here and now” (idheva), it seems impossible to conclude that the definition of nirvana without remainder is intended to say anything about nirvana or the aggregates beyond death. Rather (It 38) describes nirvana and the aggregates at the moment of death: they will be no longer subject to rebirth and they will become cooled, tranquil, at peace. The question is: what does this peace or coolness entail? What happens after the nirvana of the aggregates? Does the mind of enlightened beings survive happily ever after? Does the liberated being exist beyond death or not?

These questions are left undetermined (avyākata) by the Buddha of the the Pāli Nikāyas. The ten questions in the the Pāli Nikāyas ask whether (1) The world is eternal; (2) The world is not eternal; (3) The world is infinite; (4) The world is finite; (5) Body and soul are one thing; (6) Body and soul are two different things; (7) A liberated being (tathāgata) exists after death; (8) A liberated being (tathāgata) does not exist after death; (9) A liberated being (tathāgata) both exists and does not exist after death; (10) A liberated being (tathāgata) neither exists nor does not exist after death. In Sanskrit Buddhist texts the ten views become fourteen by adding the last two possibilities of the tetralema (both A and B, neither A nor B) to the questions about the world.

Unfortunately for those looking for quick answers, the Buddha of the Pāli Nikāyas does not provide a straightforward yes or no response to any of these questions. When the Buddha is asked whether the liberated being exists, does not exist, both, or neither, he sets aside these questions by saying that (1) he does not hold such views, (2) he has left the questions undetermined, and (3) the questions do not apply (na upeti). The first two answers are also used to respond to questions about the temporal and spatial finitude or infinitude of the world, and the identity or difference between the soul and the body. Only the third type of answer is given to the questions about liberated beings after death.

Most presentations of early Buddhism interpret these three answers of the Buddha as an eloquent silence about metaphysical questions due primarily to pragmatic reasons, namely, the questions divert from spiritual practice and are not conducive to liberation from suffering. While the pragmatic reasons for the answers of the Buddha are undeniable, it is inaccurate to understand them as silence about metaphysical questions. In fact, the Buddha of the Pāli Nikāyas does address many metaphysical issues with his teachings of non-self and dependent arising.

The answers of the Buddha to the undetermined questions are due not only to pragmatic reasons but also to metaphysical reasons: the questions are inconsistent with the doctrines of non-self and dependent arising because they assume the existence of a permanent and independent self, a self that is either finite or infinite, identical or different from the body, existing or not existing after death. Besides pragmatic and metaphysical reasons, there are cognitive and affective reasons for the answers of the Buddha: the undetermined questions are based on ignorance about the nature of the five aggregates and craving for either immortal existence or inexistence. The questions are expressions of ‘identity views,’ that is, they are part of the problem of suffering. Answering the questions directly would have not done any good: a yes answer would have fostered more craving for immortal existence and led to eternalist views, and a no answer would have fostered further confusion and led to nihilist views (S.IV.400-1).

In the case of the undetermined questions about the liberated being, there are also apophatic reasons for answering “it does not apply.” The Buddha of the Pāli Nikāyas illustrates the inapplicability of the questions with the simile of the fire extinct: just as it does not make sense to ask about the direction in which an extinct fire has gone, it is inappropriate to ask about the status of the liberated being beyond death: “The fire burned in dependence on its fuel of grass and sticks. When that is used up, if it does not get any more fuel, being without fuel, it is reckoned as extinguished. Similarly, the enlightened being has abandoned the five aggregates by which one might describe him…he is liberated from reckoning in terms of the five aggregates, he is profound, immeasurable, unfathomable like the ocean” (M.I.487-8).


b. Eternalism, Nihilism, and the Middle Way

There are three possible interpretations of the simile of the extinct fire: (1) liberated beings no longer exist beyond death (2) liberated beings exist in a mysterious unfathomable way beyond death (3) the Buddha is silent about both the liberated being and nirvana after death. The first interpretation seems the most logical conclusion given the Buddha’s ontology of suffering and the doctrine of non-self. However, the nihilist interpretation makes Buddhist practice meaningless and contradicts texts where the Buddha criticizes teachings not conducive to spiritual practice such as materialism and determinism (M.I.401ff). But more importantly, the nihilist interpretation is vehemently rejected in the Pāli Nikāyas: “As I am not, as I do not proclaim, so have I been baselessly, vainly, falsely, and wrongly misrepresented by some ascetics and brahmins thus: ‘the ascetic Gotama [Buddha] is one who leads astray; he teaches the annihilation, the destruction, the extermination of an existing being’ ”(M.I.140).

The second interpretation appears to some as following from the Buddha’s incontrovertible response to the nihilist reading of his teachings: since the Buddha rejects nihilism, he must somehow accept the eternal existence of liberated beings, or at least the eternal existence of nirvana. For eternalist interpreters, the texts in the Pāli Nikāyas that speak about the transcendence and ineffability of liberated beings and nirvana can be understood as implying their existence after or beyond death.

There are several eternalist readings of the Buddha’s thought. We have already mentioned the most common: the doctrine of non-self merely states that the five aggregates are not the true self, which is the transcendent and ineffable domain of nirvana. However, there are eternalist interpretations within Buddhism too. That is, interpretations that are nominally consistent with the doctrine of non-self but that nevertheless speak of something as eternally existing: either the mind of liberated beings or nirvana. For instance, Theravāda Buddhists usually see nirvana as non-self, but at the same time as an unconditioned (asaṃkhata) and deathless (amata) reality. The assumption, though rarely stated, is that liberated beings dwell eternally in nirvana without a sense of “I” and “mine,” which is a transcendent state beyond the comprehension of unenlightened beings. Another eternalist interpretation is that of the Dalai Lama who, following the standard interpretation of Tibetan Buddhists, claims that the Buddha did not teach the cessation of all aggregates but only of contaminated aggregates. That is, the uncontaminated aggregates of liberated beings continue to exist individually beyond death, though they are seen as impermanent, dependently arisen, non-self, and empty of inherent existence (Dalai Lama 1975:27). Similarly, Peter Harvey understands nirvana as a selfless and objectless state of consciousness different from the five aggregates that exists temporarily during life and eternally beyond death (1995: 186-7).

The problem with eternalist interpretations is that they contradict what the Pāli Nikāyas say explicitly about the way to consider liberated beings, the limits of language, the content of the Buddha’s teachings, and dependent arising as a middle way between the extremes of eternalism and annihilationism. In (S.III.110ff), Sāriputta, the Buddha’s leading disciple in doctrinal matters, explains that liberated beings should be considered neither as annihilated after death nor as existing without the five aggregates.

In (D.II.63-4) the Buddha makes clear that consciousness and mentality-materiality, that is, the five aggregates, are the limits of designation (adhivacana), language (nirutti), cognitions (viññatti), and understanding (paññā). Accordingly, in (D.II.68) the Buddha says it is inadequate to state that the liberated being exists after death, does not exist, both, or neither. This reading is confirmed by (Sn 1076): “There is not measure (pamāṇa) of one who has gone out, that by which [others] might speak (vajju) of him does not exist. When all things have been removed, then all ways of speech (vādapathā) are also removed.”

Given the Buddha’s understanding of the limits of language and understanding in the Pāli Nikāyas, it is not surprising that he responded to the accusation of teaching the annihilation of beings, by saying that “formerly and now I only teach suffering and the cessation of suffering.” Since the Buddha does not teach anything beyond the cessation of suffering at the moment of death, that is, beyond the limits of language and understanding, it is inaccurate to accuse him of teaching the annihilation of beings. Similarly, stating that liberated beings exist after death in a mysterious way beyond the four logical possibilities of existence, non-existence, both or neither, is explicitly rejected in (S.III.118-9) and (S.IV.384), where once again the Buddha concludes that he only makes known suffering and the cessation of suffering.

If the eternalist interpretation were correct, it would have been unnecessary for the Buddha of the Pāli Nikāyas to put so much emphasis on the teaching of dependent arising. Why would dependent arising be defined in (S.II.17) as right view and as the middle way between the extremes of eternalism and annihilationism if the truth were that the consciousness of liberated beings or the unconditioned nirvana exist eternally? If knowing and seeing dependent arising precludes someone from speculating about a permanent self in the past and the future (M.I.265), why would the Buddha teach anything about the eternal existence of liberated beings and nirvana?

In order to avoid the aforementioned contradictions entailed by eternalist readings of the Pāli Nikāyas, all texts about nirvana and the consciousness of liberated beings are to be understood as referring to this life or the moment of death, never to some mysterious consciousness or domain that exists beyond death. Since none of the texts about nirvana and liberated beings found in the Pāli Nikāyas refer unambiguously to their eternal existence beyond death, I interpret the Buddha as being absolutely silent about nirvana and liberated beings beyond death (Vélez de Cea 2004a). In other words, nothing of what the Pāli Nikāyas say goes beyond the limits of language and understanding, beyond the content of the Buddha’s teachings, and beyond dependent arising as the middle way between eternalism and annihilationism.

Instead of focusing on nirvana and liberated beings beyond death, the Buddha of the Pāli Nikāyas emphasizes dependent arising and the practice of the four foundations of mindfulness. Dependent arising is intended to avoid views about a permanent and independent self in the past and the future (M.I.265; M.III.196ff), and the four foundations of mindfulness are said to be taught precisely to destroy such views (D.III.141). That is, the Buddha’s fundamental concern is to address the problem of suffering in the present without being distracted by views about the past or the future: “Let not a person revive the past, or on the future build his hopes; for the past has been left behind and the future has not been reached. Instead with insight let him see each presently arising state (paccuppannañca yo dhammaṃ tattha tattha vipassati); let him know that and be sure of it, invincibly, unshakeably. Today the effort must be made, tomorrow death may come, who knows?” (Bhikkhu Bodhi’s translation. M.III.193).

http://www.iep.utm.edu/buddha/#H4





Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Fabrications as Saṅkhāra vs Fabrication as (verbal, bodily and mental)
« Reply #23 on: November 28, 2014, 07:45:14 pm »
Well, I noticed that you sat here long enough reading this, but never even bothered to answer the first question, so it's clear you still don't know what the debate is about --- with that in mind, I'm going to make one more post and then lock this thread because it's going no where. As I stated earlier, that was an excellent rebuttle, but that doesn't mean it wasn't flawed.

This was also the reason for my first question about the pali language being translated --- you might not be aware of this, but anyone with a formal education in the subject would know the following:

Quote
'Pali' was not originally the name of any language. The word means `text' — that is, the text of the Canon, as opposed to Commentary. For Theravadin Buddhists, the word holds something of the sacredness that 'gospel truth' does for Christians.

But it has to be admitted that the traditional story which is repeated in the southern Buddhist countries of Asia to the effect that Gotama was personally responsible for all the utterances attributed to him in the Three Pitalcas, and that they were rehearsed at the conference which his followers held at Rajagaha a few months after his demise, is quite untenable.

The language Pali, like Sanskrit, was and is written in various scripts. The Pali Canon was first recorded in Ceylon in the first century B.C. It was done so in Sinhala characters — by stencilling ola leaves with stylus and treating with dummala oil. Although a dead language, Pali exhibits both onomatopoeia and pleonasm, but this only proves that it derived from a language that was living, as Basic English does from the vernacular. The onomatopoeia and the pleonasm that we come across in the written Pali has been found to resemble the idiom of the people of Sanchi, and of Ujjeni (Ujjayini, modem Ujjain, C.P.), the ancient capital of Avanti. The language of the Pali Canon is, therefore, connected with Magadhi, the dialect of the Maghadese overlords of mid-Western India. Traces of Magadhi are more frequent in the verse passages of the Pali texts.

Doctor Bimala Chum Law has pointed out that, in the Pali, "to a large extent apparent dialectical deposits and scholastic formations occur. But in spite of this rather heterogeneous character of the Pali language, a chronological development, a division of the history of the language in periods, a sort of stratification is clearly seen."[1] This is most important to the task of segregating those passages of the canonical writings which reflect the earliest version of Buddhist teaching, because such strata in the development of the Pali language must represent something of the chronology of the redactions of the texts themselves.

[1] Law, Bimala Chum: A History of Pali Literature, 2 vols. p. 258. Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner and Co. Ltd., London 1933.

The Buddha's Philosophy: Selections from the Pali Canon and an Introductory Essay
by G.F. Allen, Routledge Library Edition (2013)

In assessing the age and orthodoxy of the contents of the individual books of the Pali Canon, the first thing that done is to classify them according to the four stages that are represented in the canonical literature as a whole --- these stages are:

(1) The Pristine, Ascetic stage—philosophical;
(2) The Monastic stage—disciplinary;
(3) The Moralistic stage—religious;
(4) The 'Legendary' stage—commentarial.

Your rebuttle is flawed because both Macy and Kalupahana are referring to the Pristine/Ascetic stage (or Strata #1), whereas your own quote actually belongs to Monastic stage (or Strata #2) --- in other words, a later strata does not supercede the earlier strata, period. Again, you offered an excellent rebuttle, but it's flawed to the point that if this were an actual debate it would have ended with your rebuttle itself and you would have been shown the door.

I wish you the best, I really do, but no one should have to sit here and try to discuss this if proper dialectics aren't going to be used.



« Last Edit: November 29, 2014, 01:03:10 am by Dharmakara, Reason: grammar/contraction »

 


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