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Henry the Heretic


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#1 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 16 July 2006 - 05:03 PM

Those who would like to read about Henry the Heretic should visit my website. To avoid any comeback to the hosts of this website, I don't publish the article here.

#2 RobertK

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 06:00 AM

Dear Venerable,
My feeling is that it is not so bad when non-Theravada people make errors of view, that is to be expected.
More dangerous are translators/monks like Ven. Thanissaro whom laydisciples believe is accurately portraying Dhamma. Maybe you could add a section to the Manayana refuting his beliefs about self and the eternal consciousness..
with respect
Robert

#3 Guest_Scott Duncan_*

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 03:54 PM

QUOTE(RobertK @ Jul 23 2006, 12:00 AM) View Post

Dear Venerable,
My feeling is that it is not so bad when non-Theravada people make errors of view, that is to be expected.
More dangerous are translators/monks like Ven. Thanissaro whom laydisciples believe is accurately portraying Dhamma. Maybe you could add a section to the Manayana refuting his beliefs about self and the eternal consciousness..
with respect
Robert

Dear Venerable,

I'd be interested in this as well. Even I can see the subtle twist that moves away from "no self" to "self but..."

Scott.

#4 Richard

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 04:49 PM

QUOTE(Scott Duncan @ Jul 23 2006, 08:54 AM) View Post

Dear Venerable,

I'd be interested in this as well. Even I can see the subtle twist that moves away from "no self" to "self but..."

Scott.


I confess that I haven't read any of Thanissaro's essays and commentaries, so I can't make any judgments. Is he truly "twisting" the dhamma? Or is it mere misinterpretation? I'm basically curious about his intent.

As for Henry The Heretic ... sounds like a children's book. laugh.gif Unfortunately, I understand that Henry's problem has nothing at all to do with misinterpretation.

Richard


#5 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 09:20 PM

Some teachings are very subtle, and easy to misinterpret. There are some well known Theravāda teachers, whose viewpoint is different to mine. I don't think any of them are as blameworthy as those like Henry who uphold Bogus Sutras and censor anyone who criticises those teachings. If you don't agree with Ajahn Thanissaro's views, then you can make your own views clear. He is not trying to stop you.
QUOTE
298-9. I do not see any one thing for the arising and increase of unwholesome states as wrong view … for the arising and development of wholesome states as right view.

300-1, I do not see any one thing for the non-arising and decrease of wholesome states as wrong view … for the arousing and development of wholesome states as right view.

302-3. I do not see any one thing for the arising and maturing of wrong view as unwise attention … for the arising and maturing of right view as wise attention.

304-5. I do not see any one thing for the arising of beings in hell after death as wrong view … for the arising of beings in heaven after death as right view.

306. Whatever bodily, verbal, or mental actions one of wrong view undertakes, are undesired, horrible, unpleasant, and lead to suffering. Because of his wrong view.

307. For one of right view … whatever he does it always leads to happiness.

308-9. One individual arises in the world for the harm, misery, and loss of many people. Who is that? One of wrong view, with perverted vision. One individual arises for the welfare, happiness, and benefit of many people. One of right view.

310. I do not see any one thing more blameworthy than wrong view.

311. One individual arises for the harm, misery, and loss of many — Makkhali (Gosala).

312-18. When a teaching is badly taught, one who undertakes it or promotes it makes much demerit … the donors should know the right measure, not the recipients … a diligent disciple suffers … a negligent disciple is happy.

313-19. When a teaching is well taught, one who undertakes or promotes it makes much merit … the recipients should know the right measure, not the donors … a diligent disciple is happy … a negligent disciple suffers.


#6 Guest_Scott Duncan_*

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 03:33 AM

QUOTE
I confess that I haven't read any of Thanissaro's essays and commentaries, so I can't make any judgments. Is he truly "twisting" the dhamma? Or is it mere misinterpretation? I'm basically curious about his intent.

Dear Richard,

I've mostly read his translations. He is the mainstay of the Access to Insight web-site. It seems he has his own way of seeing things. Look for yourself, though, I don't know enough to really judge, nor do I wish to speak ill of the Venerable.

With loving kindness,

Scott.

#7 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 25 July 2006 - 09:05 PM

Since Ajahn Thanissaro gives the following caveat to his essay, he can hardly be called a heretic.
QUOTE
What follows is a selection of relevant passages from the Canon. They are offered with the caveat that in ultimate terms nothing conclusive can be proved by quoting the texts. Scholars have offered arguments for throwing doubt on almost everything in the Canon — either by offering new translations for crucial terms, or by questioning the authenticity of almost every passage it contains — and so the only true test for any interpretation is to put it into practice and see where it leads in terms of gaining release for the mind.

Heresy is not just mistranslation or misinterpretation, which I am sure we all do frequently. However, if someone writes their own texts, and puts them in the mouth of the Buddha, that is a different matter entirely. When someone who comes after relies on such unreliable sources they fall into serious error by accepting them as the genuine teaching of the Buddha, although they are not.

The Dalai Lama says, for example:
QUOTE
Those Arahants who have conquered the disturbing emotions are in a temporary state. They have not attained a final state. Due to the remaining obscurations they regard body and speech as "mine". Even though they are no longer motivated by disturbing emotions the cognitive obscuration, which is a sense of a self, an "I" and "mine" manifests in their physical and verbal activities. Their conquests and achievements for their own sake are temporary. They are not capable of benefiting others ultimately. Therefore, one should consider the one-sided peace of relinquishing the disturbing emotions as being defective and also as a danger.

1. The Arahants are in a temporary state. That is saying that their attainment of the final goal is not really the final goal. After they attain parinibbāna, they still have more work to do to attain Omniscience. This teaching is clearly heretical.

2. a sense of a self, an "I" and "mine" manifests in their physical and verbal activities. Even a Stream-winner is free from the self-illusion, not to speak of Arahants.

3. Their conquests and achievements for their own sake are temporary. Their attainment is not final. Their attainment is only for their own benefit. rolleyes.gif

4. They are not capable of benefiting others ultimately. Why then did the Arahant Sāriputta always revere the Arahant Assaji by lying down with his head pointing in the direction of his teacher? Surely the Venerable Sāriputta recognized the immeasurable benefit he gained from the teaching conveyed to him by Venerable Assaji, which led to his own attainment of Stream-winning?

I don't think we should be afraid to say that such views are heretical. The Dalai Lama may not adhere to these false views, but may be just faithfully repeating what he has heard without having considered the consequences of what he is saying. Surely if the Dalai Lama knows anything at all about the Buddha's teaching he will acknowledge the immense benefit of Arahants to the world? Anuttaram pu˝˝akhettam lokassa.

#8 RobertK

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 06:40 AM

Dear venerable,
Yes the Dalai Lama's statement is pure wrongview. I consider Mahayana as almost another religion, like hindu etc. Regretable certainly, but the schism is ancient, not much hope of any change. Although it does intrigue me why, when Theravada teaching is readily available, so many Buddhist prefer other ways..Then again why do many people like Christianity, Jain etc..?
I see what you mean about Ven. Thanissaro, and I guess you are right.
with respect
Robert

#9 Piotr

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Posted 29 July 2006 - 09:32 AM

Bhante,

QUOTE(Bhikkhu Pesala @ Jul 25 2006, 11:05 PM) View Post
The Dalai Lama says, for example:


may you post a source of Dalai Lama's words? It would be much appreciated smile.gif Thank you.

pk

#10 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 29 July 2006 - 08:02 PM

QUOTE(Piotr @ Jul 29 2006, 10:32 AM) View Post

Bhante,
may you post a source of Dalai Lama's words? It would be much appreciated smile.gif Thank you.

pk

The words are quoted from the complimentary DVD set sent to me by Leaders of the World. See See this thread at E-Sangha. No one every came to claim the free DVD set, so I passed it on to someone else.

#11 Piotr

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Posted 30 July 2006 - 09:06 AM

Thank you Bhante. smile.gif

pk

#12 RobertK

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 05:13 AM

QUOTE
http://www.lioncity....p...35776&st=60
QUOTE(Mulder @ Sep 13 2006, 02:56 PM)
If you believe Tibetan Buddhism doesn't make much sense sometimes (and I am quite sympathetic to that view) then you shouldn't even dream of going Theravada.

At least Mahayana could be understood it a way that makes sense while orthodox Theravada is irrestorably an archaeological artifact. Anyone teaching Pali Buddhism in a way relevant to us and to the teachings of the Buddha must irreconcileably deviate from Theravadin orthodoxy.


#13 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 09:54 AM

Are you tempting me to go and get suspended again? unsure.gif

It seems that some Buddhists are connoisseurs of fine wines. How odd?

#14 RobertK

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 10:50 AM

QUOTE(Bhikkhu Pesala @ Sep 15 2006, 06:54 PM) View Post

Are you tempting me to go and get suspended again? unsure.gif

It seems that some Buddhists are connoisseurs of fine wines. How odd?

biggrin.gif


#15 Guest_Scott Duncan_*

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 12:11 PM

I think paleontology: While in Dinosaur Provincial Park with the kids earlier this summer we actually saw the bones of an Orthodox Theravadin washing out of an eroding sandstone formation. There was a stone tablet with a proto-paali inscription clutched in the fossilised bones of his hand. My paali is not that good but I believe it said: "Dhammaa aniccaa"
Scott.

#16 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 05:22 PM

No. I believe it must have said:
QUOTE
Sabbe sankhārā aniccā'ti

All conditioned things are impermanent

or
QUOTE
Sabbe dhammā anattā'ti.

All conditioned and unconditioned things are not subject to my wish or control.

Not all Dhammas are impermanent and unsatisfactory.
The nibbāna dhamma is neither impermanent, nor unsatisfactory, but it is devoid of any self, and not subject to anyone's wish or control.
QUOTE(DhpA)
‘The splendid royal chariots, once so beautiful, grow old and decay,
but the teaching of the wise is ageless and never changes,
this is what the wise talk about among themselves.’


#17 Guest_Scott Duncan_*

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Posted 16 September 2006 - 01:25 AM

QUOTE(Bhikkhu Pesala @ Sep 15 2006, 11:22 AM) View Post

No. I believe it must have said:

All conditioned things are impermanent

or

All conditioned and unconditioned things are not subject to my wish or control.

Not all Dhammas are impermanent and unsatisfactory.
The nibbāna dhamma is neither impermanent, nor unsatisfactory, but it is devoid of any self, and not subject to anyone's wish or control.

Yes, Venerable, you're correct; looking closely at my photo. The word "dhamma" has so many senses to it, though doesn't it?

Sincerely,

Scott.

#18 Bhikkhu Pesala

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 08:55 PM

Those heretics at E-Sangha finally suspended my account permanently, or until August 2009, whichever is longer. Since I haven't posted on E-Sangha since the last one month suspension ended on June 5th, I wonder why. I just replied to a PM today. There was nothing in the PM to criticise anyone at E-Sangha.

#19 RobertK

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 09:41 AM

I get occasional warnings these days, so probably won't be long before I am gone.

Edit: the main attraction for me are excellent posts by Venerable Dhammanando, so I try to endure..

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 11:46 AM

I took myself off two or three months ago. It was suggested that I might be a 'troll' and I figured that there were less difficult ways to learn Dhamma, which is difficult to learn properly at the best of times.

Scott.