[dsg] Re: "Your duty is the contemplation"
What you ask is a very complex and deep question. I am not sure if I
am qualified to answer it, but that has never stopped me before!
My question is this: How does one know when insight occurs?
How does one know if it is insight, not knowledge, or mere
intellectual understanding of something, since we are so heavily
influenced by what we've been taught, by school, by religion, and
heck, by Buddhism?
It seems to me that you are looking at `insight' as the gaining of
something, like learning math, science, and history; I posit
that `insight' is actually the taking away of something. Insight is
when ignorance and craving are removed from the mind so that its
inherent wisdom can shine through. Like muddy water stilled or
clouds that dissolve in the midday sun, insight is when the
obstructions of the mind are removed and the underlying wisdom is
clearly seen. Nothing has been added to the mind; `insight'/'wisdom'
How does one know that this has/is happening? Well, if you are a
full arahant, it is easy to see. The obstructions are clearly gone
and reality is clearly seen. You have no doubt and no one could tell
you otherwise as to what you have achieved. But what if you are not
a full arahant? Then how does one know that the defilements are
beginning to be removed? This is a little tricky and my answer may
come across as a bit unconventional: A person knows that he/she is
on the correct path of Buddhism and making strides because he/she
will experience almost constant wavering between dissatisfaction and
angst with one's current `insight', and happiness with one's
current `insight'. But, the thought is always there and the concern
is always there about `insight'. Those who have zero insight, don't
worry or think about such things.
Yep, you heard me right. Why? Because as the defilements are
removed, the goal (nibbana) is more in sight but it is not completely
in sight and it is hard to reach. Like the saying goes, it is `so
close and yet so far'. And with nibbana being like candy behind a
glass counter, we grow even more dissatisfied with what we don't have
yet, but extremely excited and happy that we at least see it. Before
entering this Buddhist path, the glass was tinted, the candy out of
sight, and we felt like we were `missing something' but never quite
sure what that `something' was. We stumbled onto Buddhism, saw that
it answered a lot of the questions we had, but also discovered that
its path is `bitter sweet'.
So WL, be rest assured, you have already gained much insight. If you
hadn't, the issue of how much insight you have gained would not be
important to you. Asking the question would not be important to
Even belonging to this group would not be important to you. You
would live your life for sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll like the rest of
the masses. But you don't, so you have gained much insight. The
Buddha said that his path was beautiful in the beginning, in the
middle and in the end. But he didn't say it was quick, easily
understood, easy to follow, or guaranteed for all.
Don't evaluate yourself by where you aren't; evaluate yourself by
where you have come from. Take care.
--- In dhammastudygroup@y..., "Uan Chih Liu" <uanchihliu@h...> wrote:
> I've been following this thread because I was hoping it may
> provide me some answers to a question that has been
> bothering me. But thus far, perhaps due to my ignorance,
> I have not found the answers yet.
> My question is this: How does one know when insight occurs?
> How does one know if it is insight, not knowledge, or mere
> intellectural understanding of something, since we are so heavily
> influenced by what we've been taught, by school, by religion, and
> heck, by Buddhism? There are times while I'm contemplating
> about things, all of sudden, bang, something becomes clear to me.
> I'm sure everyone experiences that. Does that constitute as an
> insight or was it merely intellectural understanding or was it
> a concept construed by my mind with so much conviction that I
> actually thought it was insight? I've found learning and knowledge
> is my best friend and biggest enemy on my journey for seeking for
> truth. If anyone can shed some light on this, would appreciate
> A very perplexed being,
--- oreznoone@... wrote:
.. .. ..
> BTW, the old question remains open: abhidhamma recognizes bothblack
> and white kamma, and mixed, but what about the kamma that endskamma?
> What is its classification?The Abhidhamma classifies kamma in a number of different ways, the
most basic of which is the 2-fold classification of kusala and
The various kinds of kamma referred to in the 'black and white' sutta
are simply different combinations and levels of these 2 kinds of
For example, the 'mixed' kamma of the sutta refers to the fact that
both kusala and akusala kamma have been performed and accumulated and
will bear their respective fruit (there is no 'mixed kamma' per se in
the Abhidhamma). Likewise, the 'kamma that ends kamma' is a
reference to a particular level, or sub-class, of kusala kamma.
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