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Citta never dies


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#1 RobertK

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Posted 22 April 2007 - 03:08 AM

http://www.lioncity....mp;#entry659806

QUOTE
(SeekerOfDharma @ Apr 21 2007, 06:12 PM)
Nibbana That state of the Citta in which all the Kilesas and Dukkha have been eradicated. [/i]

WHAT? Nibbana as a state of Citta?

This doesn't sound like what it says in Pali Nikayas...........




Why not? Perhaps you have been reading Theravada texts, based on the Abhidhamma, but not the actual Suttas themselves. There are many passages, especially the more poetic ones, which could be interpreted in this way. I think it's somewhere in the Theragatha where it even mentions "nibbana in the heart". I would have to look up the exact reference, perhaps someone will find it first.

Nibbana as a metaphysical external "object" that the mind (mano) comes into contact with at the magga-phala moment is only elaborated in this way in later Buddhist texts.

Bhikkhu Gavesako





QUOTE
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)










Bhante,


QUOTE
QUOTE(gavesako @ Apr 22 2007, 03:57 AM)
There are many passages, especially the more poetic ones, which could be interpreted in this way
.


Sure, virtually any view can be supported by quoting Pali verses and interpreting them to fit one's presuppositions. For that very reason it is generally not a good policy to draw any doctrinal conclusion from Pali poetry that would find no support in teachings given in prose. In poetry, by its very nature, there is a greater liberty of expression and so a greater tendency to ambiguity.


QUOTE
QUOTE
I think it's somewhere in the Theragatha where it even mentions "nibbana in the heart". I would have to look up the exact reference, perhaps someone will find it first.



Yes, "nibbānaṃ hadayasmiṃ opiya", in the verse of Vajjiputta Thera (Thag. 119). But your proposed reading of it seems a rather strained one. Note the context of the phrase "nibbānaṃ hadayasmiṃ opiya" in the Theragāthā verse, and note also the context of the parallel verse in the Ānanda Sutta (SN. i. 199; Connected Discourses I. 297) and you should see that the likeliest meaning of the phrase is not that nibbāna is a state of the heart, but rather that one should set one's heart on attaining nibbāna.

Here are the two passages:


From the Theragāthā:

rukkhamūlagahanaṃ pasakkiya
nibbānaṃ hadayasmiṃ opiya
jhāya gotama mā ca pamādo
kiṃ te biḷibiḷikā karissatī ti

"Having approached a thicket at the foot of a tree, having put quenching [nibbāna] in the heart, meditate, Gotama, do not be indolent. What good will this hullabaloo do you?"
(Norman trans.)

Clearly the imperatives 'jhāya' (meditate!) and 'mā pamādo' ('don't be negligent!') would be incongruous if the preceding line meant that nibbāna had already been attained. This point is further borne out in the following passage:



The Ānanda Sutta:

On one occasion the venerable Ānanda was dwelling among the Kosalans in a certain woodland thicket. Now on that occasion the venerable Ānanda was excessively involved in instructing laypeople. Then the devatā that inhabited that woodland thicket, having compassion for the venerable Ānanda, desiring his good, desiring to stir up a sense of urgency in him, approached him and addressed him in verse:

[the Pali verse is identical to the Theragāthā one, but Bhikkhu Bodhi translates it ...]

Having entered the thicket at the foot of a tree,
Having placed Nibbāna in your heart,
Meditate, Gotama, and don't be negligent!
What will this hullabaloo do for you?"


Clearly Ānanda has not at this point attained nibbāna, and so the phrase "nibbānaṃ hadayasmiṃ opiya" should not be taken as saying anything about nibbāna itself, but simply as an exhortation to strive for it.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu





#2 RobertK

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Posted 01 May 2007 - 01:57 AM

http://www.lioncity....mp;#entry665867
SeekerOfDharma @ Apr 6 2007, 07:03 PM)
Hello all,
I apologize if this question was asked before.

In Arahatamaggae by Maha Boowa he states that:
"citta: The citta is the minds essential knowing nature, the fundamental quality of knowing that underlies all sentient existence. When associated with a physical body, it is referred to as mind or heart. Being corrupted by the defiling influence of fundamental ignorance (avijj), its currents flow out to manifest as feelings (vedan), memory (sa), thoughts (sankhra), and consciousness (via), thus embroiling the citta in a web of self-deception. It is deceived about its own true nature. The true nature of the citta is that it simply knows. There is no subject, no object, no duality; it simply knows. The citta does not arise or pass away; it is never born and never dies. " pg 108


How is this supposed to be interpreted? Doesn't this contradict the Anatta teaching? On first glance this seems like eternalism. Wrong view #8 1.2.13 Brahmajala sutta.

What is the difference between citta and vinnana?
What is the difference between citta and mano?

Thank you.

With Metta,

SOD






Citta merely "knows". Vinnana is knowing via a sense organ or mind. But whether you're knowing via eyes, ears, hands, mouth, nose, or mind; "knowing" connects them all.

The Buddha stated that the five kandhas were changing, unsatisfactory, and not-self. How could he say so, if "mere knowing" were not present? How could he point to Nibbana, without "mere knowing"?

You can't grasp mere knowing. Therefore, it's not a self.




Basic Buddhism

__________

[Thag. 3.13]

Rouse yourselves.
Go forth.
Apply yourselves
to the Awakened One's bidding.
Scatter the army of Death
as an elephant would
a shed made of reeds.

__________

Bring me my Bow of burning gold:
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds, unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire.

I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in the night
Till we've rooted the Bodhi Tree
From Maine shore to the Bering Sea.


Dhammanando Today, 12:44 AM Post #46


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Hi Jetavan,


QUOTE(Jetavan @ Apr 30 2007, 10:42 PM)
Citta merely "knows". Vinnana is knowing via a sense organ or mind. But whether you're knowing via eyes, ears, hands, mouth, nose, or mind; "knowing" connects them all.


The Buddha didn't ascribe any such function to citta. Whatever the Hindus and the Thai forest fakirs may teach, in Buddha Dhamma there is no knowing that arises independent of conditions, and no big knowing connecting or integrating all the little knowings. There are just little knowings, and that's your lot.


QUOTE
The Buddha stated that the five kandhas were changing, unsatisfactory, and not-self.


Yes. And that the five khandhas are all you've got.


QUOTE
How could he say so, if "mere knowing" were not present?


Through having discerned these three characteristics by paa a conditioned dhamma like all the rest; not by the mystical, inscrutable and unconditioned citta that the forest fakirs prattle about.


QUOTE
How could he point to Nibbana, without "mere knowing"?


It is because there is no "mere knowing", but only contingent, dependently arisen knowing, that he could point to Nibbana.


QUOTE
You can't grasp mere knowing.


The puthujjana can grasp anything whatever; even Nibbana can be an object of his grasping see the Mulapariyaya Sutta (MN. 1).


QUOTE
Therefore, it's not a self.


If it is persisting, stable, eternal, capable of knowing independent of conditions, and yet remaining essentially unaltered by what it knows, then it would make a perfect self !

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu





My next objection is its uncertainty ... an armament is not a victory. If you do not succeed, you are without resource; for, conciliation failing, force remains; but, force failing, no further hope of conciliation is left.
Edmund Burke, Speech on Conciliation with the Colonies, March 22, 1775

Conservatives for Peace Andrew Sullivan Michael Oakeshott Association Salisbury Review Spectator
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Jetavan Today, 04:21 AM Post #47


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QUOTE(Dhammanando @ Apr 30 2007, 12:44 PM)

The puthujjana can grasp anything whatever; even Nibbana can be an object of his grasping see the Mulapariyaya Sutta (MN. 1).

If it is persisting, stable, eternal, capable of knowing independent of conditions, and yet remaining essentially unaltered by what it knows, then it would make a perfect self !

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu






Hello Dhammanando Bhikkhu,

OK, here's Thanissaro Bhikkhu's translation of MN1, relevant portion referring to an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill type person:

QUOTE
He perceives Unbinding as Unbinding. Perceiving Unbinding as Unbinding, he conceives things about Unbinding, he conceives things in Unbinding, he conceives things coming out of Unbinding, he conceives Unbinding as 'mine,' he delights in Unbinding. Why is that? Because he has not comprehended it, I tell you.


Contrast that with a Buddha's correct comprehension:


QUOTE
He directly knows Unbinding as Unbinding. Directly knowing Unbinding as Unbinding, he does not conceive things about Unbinding, does not conceive things in Unbinding, does not conceive things coming out of Unbinding, does not conceive Unbinding as 'mine,' does not delight in Unbinding. Why is that? Because he has known that delight is the root of suffering & stress, that from coming-into-being there is birth, and that for what has come into being there is aging & death. Therefore, with the total ending, fading away, cessation, letting go, relinquishment of craving, the Tathagata has totally awakened to the unexcelled right self-awakening, I tell you.



But isn't the unsatisfactoriness of "delight" (which seems to be synonymous with "tanha") due to the fact that we (run-of-the-mill type persons) crave things that are impermanent?

And if it is possible to delight in and crave after Nibbana, then why should that type of delighting and craving lead to dukkha, since Nibbana not anicca, and thus, not dukkha?





Basic Buddhism

__________

[Thag. 3.13]

Rouse yourselves.
Go forth.
Apply yourselves
to the Awakened One's bidding.
Scatter the army of Death
as an elephant would
a shed made of reeds.

__________

Bring me my Bow of burning gold:
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds, unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire.

I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in the night
Till we've rooted the Bodhi Tree
From Maine shore to the Bering Sea.


MikeB Today, 06:33 AM Post #48


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QUOTE(Dhammanando @ Apr 30 2007, 05:44 PM)
the Thai forest fakirs may teach


I hope this isnt to be taken as referring to various well-known and highly respected Ajahns...

...if so I would like to ask how this is acceptable from a moderation perspective? Or if so since what date has it become acceptable for internecine wars in Modern Theravada?

As one highly respected, wise and old Luang Por said recently "is amazing how many opinionated Theravadans there are"... clutching at views and opinions for sure leads to dukkha as well as Wrong Speech.



Mike

This post has been edited by MikeB: Today, 06:34 AM




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Dhammanando Today, 07:26 AM Post #49


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Hi MikeB,


QUOTE(MikeB @ May 1 2007, 06:33 AM)
I hope this isnt to be taken as referring to various well-known and highly respected Ajahns...


Then I'm sorry to disappoint you, but it is certainly referring to various well-known ajahns, highly respected by benighted puthujjanas everywhere.


QUOTE
...if so I would like to ask how this is acceptable from a moderation perspective?


I think it's just fine. You have the venerable Gavesako and numerous other posters praising the Ajahn Mun forest tradition to the skies, and then you have me telling you what a lot of ignorant, adhammic nonsense most forest ajahns teach. I don't use my position as moderator to censor either view, for I think it's a good thing for members to hear both sides and make up their own minds. On most other online forums you'll only get to hear the pro-forest tradition view, but here on E-sangha you've got a unique opportunity to hear the views of those who have firsthand acquaintance with this tradition and yet are not so enamoured with it. (And by the way, in future if you want to raise issue connected with moderation, please do so by PM, as the rules stipulate).


QUOTE
Or if so since what date has it become acceptable for internecine wars in Modern Theravada?


The rectifying of wrong views and misrepresentations of the Buddha's teaching is not "internecine war", and it's been going on ever since the foolish monk Sati taught the doctrine of a transmigrating consciousness; ever since the shameless monk Ari??ha claimed that the Buddha was clueless about what things count as dangers; ever since the schismatic monk Devadatta tried to establish rules that had not been established by the Buddha.


QUOTE
As one highly respected, wise and old Luang Por said recently "is amazing how many opinionated Theravadans there are"... clutching at views and opinions for sure leads to dukkha as well as Wrong Speech.


Yes, I would quite agree with whomever it was that said this. I can hardly think of anything worse than clutching at the view that the doctrine of an atman-like citta is fundamental to achieving liberation from dukkha, and it must surely be wrong speech to claim that the Buddha taught any such doctrine.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu







My next objection is its uncertainty ... an armament is not a victory. If you do not succeed, you are without resource; for, conciliation failing, force remains; but, force failing, no further hope of conciliation is left.
Edmund Burke, Speech on Conciliation with the Colonies, March 22, 1775