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Files Re: Fwd: Aranavibhanga Sutta

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  • Ong Yong Peng <ypong001@yahoo.com>
    Dear Piya and friends, the filenames may have resulted in difficulties accessing the files, I have done some pruning:
    Message 1 of 10 , Feb 3 4:01 AM
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      Dear Piya and friends,

      the filenames may have resulted in difficulties accessing the files,
      I have done some pruning:

      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Pali/files/palicentre/m139aranavibhanga.
      doc

      The file on Pali textual convention is now as:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Pali/files/palicentre/Piyac2.doc

      metta,
      Yong Peng

      --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Ong Yong Peng wrote:
      > here is a study file of the Aranavibhanga Sutta provided by Piya:
      >
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Pali/files/thepalicentre/m139_Aranavibha
      nga_S_piya.doc
    • Frank Kuan
      In reference to Piya s translation of M139, some comments: 1) Doesn t the Buddha contradict his own teaching on nonconflict, non praising and non disparaging
      Message 2 of 10 , Feb 3 8:40 AM
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        In reference to Piya's translation of M139, some
        comments:

        1) Doesn't the Buddha contradict his own teaching on
        nonconflict, non praising and non disparaging in
        teaching dhamma by explicitly calling out Subhuti at
        the end and praising him for being one who practices
        nonconflict? And at the beginning praises subhuti for
        being the foremost among his disciples among
        nonconflict? Rather high praise wouldn't you say?
        Imagine the other disciples who become jealous and
        resentful of Subhuti because of that praise :-)

        2) I like how Piya uses the translation "dung-like"
        for the description of sensual pleasures. Bhikhu Bodhi
        uses "filty". What is the pali phrase in question
        here? Is it literally "dung-like"? In light of how the
        Buddha talks about using conventional language to
        teach dhamma, I wonder how he would express the same
        teaching today. "Dudes, sense pleasures are like a
        shit sandwich."

        3) If by some gross misfortune, I am not enlightened
        by the time the next buddha appears in the world, I
        vow to be named, "the foremost in obnoxiousness among
        all of the buddha's disciples."

        -fk


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      • christine_forsyth <cforsyth@vtown.com.au>
        Hello Frank and All, Frank, I thought I recognised your forthright style. :-) With regard to point (2) of your post: I wonder if language in the Buddha s
        Message 3 of 10 , Feb 3 12:57 PM
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          Hello Frank and All,

          Frank, I thought I recognised your 'forthright' style. :-)
          With regard to point (2) of your post:
          I wonder if language in the Buddha's time had a few local variants
          e.g. a usage acceptable to the majority of people of all age groups
          and levels in society, as well as one for the 'upper' and educated
          classes, and a more impermanent type of language (such as one sees
          every couple of years with high school age people) identifying one as
          rebelling against authority, or having particular interests such as
          surfing, styles of music and dancing, or the political 'cause' of the
          moment?
          I can understand the Buddha wishing his teachings to be conveyed in a
          language that would be understood by most people, but another
          consideration would be that it is actually 'listened' to.
          You mention "how the Buddha talks about using conventional language to
          teach dhamma" But , by this, did he mean not using something like
          Latin, which until recent years was the language of the Catholic
          clergy though all but unintelligible to Everyman? Did this really
          mean using language that the majority would consider vulgar? Would
          most people be willing and able to 'hear' a message phrased in
          language they wouldn't allow in their own home?
          [Is it possible that your idea of 'conventional' could mean someone
          else's 'slang' or 'unacceptable'].

          metta,
          Christine

          --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Frank Kuan <fcckuan@y...> wrote:
          > In reference to Piya's translation of M139, some
          > comments:
          >
          > 1) Doesn't the Buddha contradict his own teaching on
          > nonconflict, non praising and non disparaging in
          > teaching dhamma by explicitly calling out Subhuti at
          > the end and praising him for being one who practices
          > nonconflict? And at the beginning praises subhuti for
          > being the foremost among his disciples among
          > nonconflict? Rather high praise wouldn't you say?
          > Imagine the other disciples who become jealous and
          > resentful of Subhuti because of that praise :-)
          >
          > 2) I like how Piya uses the translation "dung-like"
          > for the description of sensual pleasures. Bhikhu Bodhi
          > uses "filty". What is the pali phrase in question
          > here? Is it literally "dung-like"? In light of how the
          > Buddha talks about using conventional language to
          > teach dhamma, I wonder how he would express the same
          > teaching today. "Dudes, sense pleasures are like a
          > shit sandwich."
          >
          > 3) If by some gross misfortune, I am not enlightened
          > by the time the next buddha appears in the world, I
          > vow to be named, "the foremost in obnoxiousness among
          > all of the buddha's disciples."
          >
          > -fk
        • Piya Tan
          Frank, ... If one speaks of the good qualities that is present in another, it is a wholesome truth, not praising. If one speaks of a negative quality in a
          Message 4 of 10 , Feb 3 6:47 PM
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            Frank,

            > 1) Doesn't the Buddha contradict his own teaching on
            > nonconflict, non praising and non disparaging in
            > teaching dhamma by explicitly calling out Subhuti at
            > the end and praising him for being one who practices
            > nonconflict? And at the beginning praises subhuti for
            > being the foremost among his disciples among
            > nonconflict? Rather high praise wouldn't you say?
            > Imagine the other disciples who become jealous and
            > resentful of Subhuti because of that praise :-)

            If one speaks of the good qualities that is present in another, it is a
            wholesome truth, not praising. If one speaks of a negative quality in a
            person that he or she has, that is not blame. In either case, then it should
            be done at the right time. Anyway, the Buddha is relating to Subhuti's
            spiritual state of mind or spiritual accomplishment, not the him as a person
            (which is the crux of the sutta). Perhaps a close reflective reading of
            section 8 might help.

            > 2) I like how Piya uses the translation "dung-like"
            > for the description of sensual pleasures. Bhikhu Bodhi
            > uses "filty". What is the pali phrase in question
            > here? Is it literally "dung-like"? In light of how the
            > Buddha talks about using conventional language to
            > teach dhamma, I wonder how he would express the same
            > teaching today. "Dudes, sense pleasures are like a
            > shit sandwich."

            The pali word here is "mii.lha,sukha.m". PED gives only "excrement" (M 1:454
            = 2:230), but the Pali synonym appears to be "guutha" (same meaning) (Vv
            2.11, PvA 194, DhA 2:53 a truly "filthy" account this last one). Although
            Bodhi's "filthy" (or alternately "vile") is polite, I think "dung-like" or
            "turd-like" brings out the Pali sense more clearly here. (It might have been
            the Buddha's own word, or a redactor's, anyway.)

            As to the last part of your remark here: yes, I think the Buddha would
            communicate with people like those from the poorer Brooklyn side of NY or
            the black ghettos in Oakland & Berkeley on their level. Of course, the
            Buddha will do this in his own special way (exactly how I am ignorant of).

            > 3) If by some gross misfortune, I am not enlightened
            > by the time the next buddha appears in the world, I
            > vow to be named, "the foremost in obnoxiousness among
            > all of the buddha's disciples."

            If you are frank, then I am earnest.

            Sukhi.

            P
            >
            > -fk
            >
            >
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          • Ong Yong Peng <ypong001@yahoo.com>
            Dear Frank, Chrisine and friends, I would like to see the Indian people NOT as a homogenious people but one of varying languages and customs. It is like the
            Message 5 of 10 , Feb 3 9:17 PM
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              Dear Frank, Chrisine and friends,

              I would like to see the Indian people NOT as a homogenious people but
              one of varying languages and customs. It is like the many African
              tribes in Africa or the many dialect groups in China. I do not know
              much of Africa except the fact that communication between the African
              countries is now made possible only because they use English as the
              medium. In China, besides the many minority ethnic group, the main
              Han people has many dozen of dialect groups, each with its own unique
              dialect and customs. I think it is the same among the Australian
              aboriginal people and in Europe.

              Most people agree that the Buddha speaks more than one language, due
              to the fine education he received when young. And since he was
              trained to inherit the small Shakyan kingdom from his father, it was
              both politically and culturally important that he knows to speak the
              languages of the more powerful neighbours such as Magadha and Kosala.

              The Buddha, according to the Tipitaka, studied the Vedas as a boy and
              that would mean he knows Vedic Sanskrit. However, he may not have
              used Sanskrit in his teaching as he belongs to a new religious
              movement, the Samana movement, that would rather not embrace anything
              Vedic.

              Pali, or even the hybrid Sanskrit used in Mahayana buddhist texts,
              should not be perceived as a liturgical language as Arabic is in
              Islam or Hebrew/Greek/Latin is in Judaism/Christianity. In fact, in
              at least one place in the Tipitaka, the Buddha has disagreed with one
              disciple who wanted to make the Buddha's teaching available in one
              language only. Instead, the Buddha wants his disciples to share the
              dhamma with others in the language of their audiences. This is why we
              see that long before the Bible is translated to English (the first
              language outside Hebrew/Greek/Latin), the Buddhadharma is already
              available in dozens of Asian languages.


              metta,
              Yong Peng

              --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, christine_forsyth wrote:
              I wonder if language in the Buddha's time had a few local variants
              e.g. a usage acceptable to the majority of people of all age groups
              and levels in society, as well as one for the 'upper' and educated
              classes, and a more impermanent type of language (such as one sees
              every couple of years with high school age people) identifying one as
              rebelling against authority, or having particular interests such as
              surfing, styles of music and dancing, or the political 'cause' of the
              moment?

              > I can understand the Buddha wishing his teachings to be conveyed in
              a language that would be understood by most people, but another
              consideration would be that it is actually 'listened' to.

              > You mention "how the Buddha talks about using conventional language
              to teach dhamma" But , by this, did he mean not using something
              like Latin, which until recent years was the language of the Catholic
              clergy though all but unintelligible to Everyman? Did this really
              mean using language that the majority would consider vulgar? Would
              most people be willing and able to 'hear' a message phrased in
              language they wouldn't allow in their own home?

              > [Is it possible that your idea of 'conventional' could mean someone
              else's 'slang' or 'unacceptable'].
            • Frank Kuan
              Hi Piya, ... I reread that section, both in your translation in B.Bodhi s, and I still have the same interpretation. The Buddha in many suttas calls out the
              Message 6 of 10 , Feb 4 8:08 AM
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                Hi Piya,
                --- Piya Tan <libris@...> wrote:
                > Perhaps a close
                > reflective reading of
                > section 8 might help. [of m139]

                I reread that section, both in your translation in
                B.Bodhi's, and I still have the same interpretation.
                The Buddha in many suttas calls out the name of the
                disciple when praising wholesome qualities. Stricly
                speaking, the Buddha contradicts his own advice in
                M139. Other examples from other suttas: when the
                Buddha points out wrong views in his disciples by
                calling them "misguided fools".

                What I conclude from this is that the Buddha could
                still use derogatory or complimentary phrases that
                appears "personal", but only the speaker would know
                whether they utter statements like that free of any
                ego-grasping. My guess is that in M139, the Buddha is
                probably cautioning his disciples to be prudent about
                pointing out wrong religious views for example to
                others who cling very dearly to them, rather than a
                directive to carry out that instruction in every minor
                situation, for example in the company of those noble
                disciples who would not wrongly grasp on to
                misperceptions of conventional language.


                > "turd-like" [describing sense-pleasures] brings out
                the Pali sense more clearly
                > here [than b.bodhi's translation "vile"]

                It's wonderful that the Buddha [when talking to
                disples who can handle the full truth] didn't pull any
                punches. "Filthy" tones it down too much. A muddy
                automobile is filthy. A dusty window is filthy. Sense
                pleasures are a shit-sandwich.

                For those of you in polite society, I should explain
                the nuance of this expression. A prime example of this
                occurs when for example, a boss passes down a very
                unsavory task to his staff, all of whom must perform
                the task rather than assign just one person to do the
                entire job. One of wiser senior members might utter
                the statement, "[The task] is a shit-sandwich, and
                everyone has to take a bite." Meaning it is
                unavoidable fate for everyone to partake in eating
                that dungheap.

                When applied to the context of sensual pleasures, it's
                a brilliant metaphor. The worldly view on the matter
                is that the only way to true happiness is to titillate
                the 5 cords of sense pleasure. Conventional wisdom
                holds that it is impossible to find happiness without
                taking a bite out of that sandwich and taking the
                negative side effects as a necessary consequence.

                The enlightened view is very different. They recognize
                shit as shit, and realize there is a sublime pleasure
                apart from sense pleasures that can come only from
                abandoning these pursuits that worldlings consider
                indispensable and unavoidable.

                -fk


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              • Frank Kuan
                Hi Chris, ... Would ... Consider the simile the Buddha uses comparing sense pleasures to leprosy. Consider all the contemplations of foulness and impurities of
                Message 7 of 10 , Feb 4 8:29 AM
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                  Hi Chris,
                  --- "christine_forsyth <cforsyth@...>"
                  Would
                  > most people be willing and able to 'hear' a message
                  > phrased in
                  > language they wouldn't allow in their own home?
                  > [Is it possible that your idea of 'conventional'
                  > could mean someone
                  > else's 'slang' or 'unacceptable'].

                  Consider the simile the Buddha uses comparing sense
                  pleasures to leprosy. Consider all the contemplations
                  of foulness and impurities of the body. There's the
                  instruction to the disciples to eat food for
                  sustenance only, as parents crossing a desert would
                  eat the flesh of their only child, only to survive,
                  not for enjoyment or entertainment value. These are
                  pretty extreme similes that would shock the
                  sensibilities of most worldlings, no matter if the
                  language was cloaked in civility or used in a
                  colloquial way.
                  The Buddha and enlightened arahants would not
                  gratuitously give hard-to-swallow teachings or use
                  colloquialism carelessly, but I believe there would be
                  occasions where they would give the modern equivalent
                  of a sermon on the shit-sandwich.

                  Thus have I heard: At one time, the blessed one was
                  visiting the recluse Frank and some of his friends
                  from the Pali group. Encompassing their minds with his
                  own, he knew that most of them, except for Frank,
                  clung to erroneous notions of pure speech...

                  "Friends, sense pleasures are a shit-sandwich."
                  ...
                  Delighted by this rousing talk, 500 disciples attained
                  the stainless eye of dhamma.

                  -fk


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                • Piya Tan
                  Frank, And now, you should read section 10. We agree on the essentials, that s great. I like to visualize the Buddha as a man of constant good humour, and hear
                  Message 8 of 10 , Feb 4 8:57 AM
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                    Frank,

                    And now, you should read section 10. We agree on the essentials, that's
                    great.

                    I like to visualize the Buddha as a man of constant good humour, and hear
                    his words, even the strongest, in that light. It makes a lot of sense then
                    (to me anyway).

                    Sukhi.

                    P.
                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: "Frank Kuan" <fcckuan@...>
                    To: <Pali@yahoogroups.com>
                    Sent: Wednesday, February 05, 2003 12:08 AM
                    Subject: Take a bite out of that sandwich Re: [Pali] Fwd: Aranavibhanga
                    Sutta Re: Maharahulovada Sutta update


                    > Hi Piya,
                    > --- Piya Tan <libris@...> wrote:
                    > > Perhaps a close
                    > > reflective reading of
                    > > section 8 might help. [of m139]
                    >
                    > I reread that section, both in your translation in
                    > B.Bodhi's, and I still have the same interpretation.
                    > The Buddha in many suttas calls out the name of the
                    > disciple when praising wholesome qualities. Stricly
                    > speaking, the Buddha contradicts his own advice in
                    > M139. Other examples from other suttas: when the
                    > Buddha points out wrong views in his disciples by
                    > calling them "misguided fools".
                    >
                    > What I conclude from this is that the Buddha could
                    > still use derogatory or complimentary phrases that
                    > appears "personal", but only the speaker would know
                    > whether they utter statements like that free of any
                    > ego-grasping. My guess is that in M139, the Buddha is
                    > probably cautioning his disciples to be prudent about
                    > pointing out wrong religious views for example to
                    > others who cling very dearly to them, rather than a
                    > directive to carry out that instruction in every minor
                    > situation, for example in the company of those noble
                    > disciples who would not wrongly grasp on to
                    > misperceptions of conventional language.
                    >
                    >
                    > > "turd-like" [describing sense-pleasures] brings out
                    > the Pali sense more clearly
                    > > here [than b.bodhi's translation "vile"]
                    >
                    > It's wonderful that the Buddha [when talking to
                    > disples who can handle the full truth] didn't pull any
                    > punches. "Filthy" tones it down too much. A muddy
                    > automobile is filthy. A dusty window is filthy. Sense
                    > pleasures are a shit-sandwich.
                    >
                    > For those of you in polite society, I should explain
                    > the nuance of this expression. A prime example of this
                    > occurs when for example, a boss passes down a very
                    > unsavory task to his staff, all of whom must perform
                    > the task rather than assign just one person to do the
                    > entire job. One of wiser senior members might utter
                    > the statement, "[The task] is a shit-sandwich, and
                    > everyone has to take a bite." Meaning it is
                    > unavoidable fate for everyone to partake in eating
                    > that dungheap.
                    >
                    > When applied to the context of sensual pleasures, it's
                    > a brilliant metaphor. The worldly view on the matter
                    > is that the only way to true happiness is to titillate
                    > the 5 cords of sense pleasure. Conventional wisdom
                    > holds that it is impossible to find happiness without
                    > taking a bite out of that sandwich and taking the
                    > negative side effects as a necessary consequence.
                    >
                    > The enlightened view is very different. They recognize
                    > shit as shit, and realize there is a sublime pleasure
                    > apart from sense pleasures that can come only from
                    > abandoning these pursuits that worldlings consider
                    > indispensable and unavoidable.
                    >
                    > -fk
                    >
                    >
                    > __________________________________________________
                    > Do you Yahoo!?
                    > Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now.
                    > http://mailplus.yahoo.com
                    >
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                    web only.
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                    >
                    >
                    >
                  • Frank Kuan
                    ... Ok, I re-read it. We seem to disagree. What you are implying here as strong word , I consider clinging to regional language and rejecting common usage.
                    Message 9 of 10 , Feb 5 4:53 AM
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                      --- Piya Tan <libris@...> wrote:
                      > Frank,
                      >
                      > And now, you should read section 10.

                      Ok, I re-read it. We seem to disagree. What you are
                      implying here as "strong word", I consider "clinging
                      to regional language and rejecting common usage." I'd
                      be very curious to know exactly the "strength" of the
                      pali regional term the buddha uses in the sutta.
                      Perhaps the pali term was equivalent to my regional
                      version. Also note that "strength" is a completely
                      relative concept. In the company of the Queen of
                      England, even the regional terms you may consider
                      acceptable might be to her "too strong".

                      In the context of this company, meaning the Pali
                      group, I would hope that we are all cultivators. As
                      such, my operating assumption has been that there is
                      little if any clinging to "regional
                      language/colloquialism" among the people here.
                      However, if I am too presumptuous, then I heartily
                      apologize.

                      I'd especially like to apologize to the fecal matter
                      that I had insensitively referred to in the tongue of
                      my regional language, which Mr. fecal matter has
                      informed me the politically correct term for his
                      people is "turd". It should be noted that as a result
                      of the great Turd war of 1850, the rival "Poo-poo"
                      clan had their regional title stripped, and is no
                      longer "recognized" by most other countries with the
                      notable exception of the Nation of Crap. In diplomatic
                      relations, the Queen of England refer to the
                      ambassador of Turd respectfully as "Number Two".

                      -fk


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