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Re: [Pali] Re: Not Concentration

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  • Kumara Bhikkhu
    Fair enough, Lennart. :-) kb
    Message 1 of 13 , Oct 10, 2010
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      Fair enough, Lennart. :-)

      kb

      Lennart Lopin wrote thus at 09:55 11/10/2010:
      >Dear Bhante,
      >
      >Guess everyone has his or her favorite samannya :-)
      >For me 'composure' would not do it either, but such are words, its all about
      >connotations... It is always more helpful if you know someone who can teach
      >you directly, lead you to the experience, then you can use simply 'samadhi'
      >and everything is perfectly fine :-)
      >
      >Much metta,
      >
      >Lennart
      >
      >On Sun, Oct 10, 2010 at 4:51 AM, Kumara Bhikkhu <kumara.bhikkhu@...>wrote:
      >
      >>
      >>
      >> Thanks, and I agree, since reading Ricardo Sasaki's (a very old Buddhist
      >> friend's) note on the Latin etymology of 'concentrate': "con-centrare = to
      >> be near or with the center". If concentration is understood that way, I
      >> think it's perfectly fine.
      >>
      >> As I see it, the word just doesn't work well unqualified if the person
      >> reading it has already been very conditioned to take it the other way, esp.
      >> with the idea of having to penetrate into the ultimate truth of phenomena.
      >>
      >> Retrospectively, most of the time then I did not do it forcefully. Even
      >> when I did , it didn't occur me then that I was straining or using
      >> will-power. I was aware of trying to induce a particular state of mind
      >> though, so much so that my brain may have physically went 'off-centrare'.
      >> :-)
      >>
      >> You pointed out another translation of samaadhi that didn't work for me
      >> too: absorption.
      >> It probably works well with the Visuddhimagga's jhaana, but not with the
      >> sutta's. In relation to this is what I got among the many responses I
      >> received. This is from Ajahn Sucitto:
      >>
      >> bhikkhu sucitto wrote thus at 13:38 01/10/2010:
      >> >Yes I can echo those remarks. Amazing what damage a word can do! Sometimes
      >> I use collectedness, or unification for samadhi. It seems to me that people
      >> approach it as something to do, rather than keep the qualities of
      >> mindfulness, kindness and letting go in good condition. But when we do that
      >> (i.e. follow the Buddha's instructions) then there can be an arrival at
      >> samadhi without tightening up the nervous system.
      >>
      >> That part about "something to do" hit the nail on the head. (I instead hit
      >> the head on the nail. Doh!) Instead of allowing the mind to settle, I
      >> approached it as "something to do". I tried to induce a state of
      >> concentration, of absorption, and ended up somewhat wonky.
      >>
      >> Here's another on a similar note:
      >>
      >> Ajahn Brahmavamso wrote thus at 08:36 09/10/2010:
      >> > Sadhu! I agree with you. "Concentration" is a miserable translation for
      >> the Pali word "Samadhi". It makes monasteries and retreat centres become
      >> "Concentration Camps"!!! I generally use "Stillness" as my preferred
      >> translation for "Samadhi", and "Samatha" is what you do to become still,
      >> which is disengaging or letting go.
      >>
      >> I bear in mind though that his preference for "stillness" is probably based
      >> on the kind of jhaana prescribed by the Visuddhimagga. Nonetheless,
      >> disengaging is what allows for samatha (settling) and arriving at samaadhi
      >> (composure).
      >>
      >> IMO, a translation preferably does not need any qualification. Ideally, the
      >> equivalent in the target language captures the meaning, usage, and (if
      >> possible) even imagery of the original word. In the case of 'samaadhi',
      >> 'composure', for me, is that word.
      >>
      >> Thanks to all for this interesting discussion. Please feel free to
      >> contribute further, if you think it hasn't been beaten to death yet.
      >>
      >> kb
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