Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Azita - Cones was (Re: Inquiry to Nina...)

Expand Messages
  • christine_forsyth
    Dear Azita, Cones come in little boxes of six or eight - I think you said Darshan from India were the best, you remember ... the ones with the sandal wood
    Message 1 of 26 , Jul 1, 2003
    • 0 Attachment
      Dear Azita,

      Cones come in little boxes of six or eight - I think you said Darshan
      from India were the best, you remember ... the ones with the sandal
      wood fragrance we bought at the Queensland University market day,
      together with the carved wooden burner, when we went to hear the
      lecture by the Ven. Bhikkhu Professor Dhammavihari. I can't think
      what else you would call them - it has 'cones' printed on the box
      (round pyramids?).

      metta and peace,
      Christine
      ---The trouble is that you think you have time ---

      --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "gazita2002"
      > >
      > dear Chris,
      > I'm wondering what 'cones' are - maybe I have shown you how
      > to choose the best, but I must call it something different, bec. I
      > don't recognise 'cones'.
      >
    • gazita2002
      ... Darshan ... dear Chris, Ahhh, yes, I do remember. Please let me know when you want your Conditions returned, I am only on Ch.3, it s not such light
      Message 2 of 26 , Jul 2, 2003
      • 0 Attachment
        --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "christine_forsyth"
        <cforsyth@v...> wrote:
        > Dear Azita,
        >
        > Cones come in little boxes of six or eight - I think you said
        Darshan
        > from India were the best, >
        >
        dear Chris,
        Ahhh, yes, I do remember.
        Please let me know when you want your 'Conditions' returned,
        I am only on Ch.3, it's not such light reading is it? No wonder
        the Buddha said it was deep and difficult to understand.!!
        Hope work goes well, and maybe see you again at end of August.
        Azita.
      • gazita2002
        ... can ... Dear Victor, I m not as certain as you that calm and peacefulness are necessarily wholesome, they can be but unless there is the wisdom to really
        Message 3 of 26 , Jul 2, 2003
        • 0 Attachment
          --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "yu_zhonghao"
          <yu_zhonghao@y...> wrote:
          > Hi Azita,
          > -snip-
          >
          > Calm and peacefulness are wholesome, skillful qualities that one
          can
          > see for oneself.

          Dear Victor,
          I'm not as certain as you that calm and peacefulness are
          necessarily wholesome, they can be but unless there is the wisdom to
          really know at the time, they can also be unwholesome, just subtle
          pleasant feeling, lobha.

          > Regarding 'wrong practice', what 'wrong practice' are you refering
          > to?
          >
          In relation to what I've just previously stated, I believe that
          unless Panna is developed to the stage of knowing what is right and
          wrong practice, then there always is the danger of taking akusala for
          kusala. For example, if during meditation, I feel really calm and
          peaceful, I don't know for sure if that's the calm of samatha or just
          good ole' Lobha. Now, if Panna arose then Panna would know. I'll
          bet its good ole Lobha.

          > And regarding the question: why can't Nibbana be object of clinging?
          >
          > I would reply with a rhetorical question:
          >
          > How can an object of clinging, fabricated, impermanent, dukkha, be
          > the cessation of dukkha, unborn, unmade, unfabricated, unbecome?
          >
          > Your comment is appreciated.
          >
          > Peace,
          > Victor
          >
          I had to think hard about this one, Victor. You are saying that
          an object that is clung to cannot be the cessation of clinging, right?
          I agree bec. Nibbana can only be experienced by wholesome cetasikas,
          but afterwards when there is thinking about Nibbana, can it not then
          be 'desired'? Can it not then be an object of clinging?
          Looking forward to your, or anyone's, comment on this.
          patience, courage and good cheer,
          Azita
        • nina van gorkom
          Dear Kio, ... Nina:I met A. Sujin for the first time in the Wat Mahathaat temple where a foreign monk was teaching about the jhanafactors, and also helped us
          Message 4 of 26 , Jul 2, 2003
          • 0 Attachment
            Dear Kio,
            op 29-06-2003 20:42 schreef suzakico op suzaki@...:

            > What I am curious first is to know your vivid, or perhaps inspiring
            > moment you had at the earlier/beginning years with A. Sujin. I read
            > some comment from the book on `daily life.' But more specifically,
            > how was your impression/learning from the first meeting? How
            > skillfully did she bring the technical matter/Abidhamma–if I may say
            > so- into the living/daily practice? Any specific event the you can
            > highlight? Even a tiny incident that brought the message to you –
            > verbally or behaviorally -may be very helpful.
            Nina:I met A. Sujin for the first time in the Wat Mahathaat temple where a
            foreign monk was teaching about the jhanafactors, and also helped us to read
            suttas. We read the Parinibbana sutta and the Kesaputta sutta (mostly called
            Kalama sutta). I was impressed that you do not have to accept anything from
            others, but have to find out the truth for yourself. A. Sujin kept rather to
            the background in this temple. I approached her and said that I wanted to
            learn about meditation that you can apply in daily life. My life was very
            busy, being in the diplomatic service. (In Japan the teachers at the
            language school (nihongo no gakko de) called me "Mrs Party". I felt there
            must something else in life, not just being engaged with parties. A. Sujin
            said, yes, vipassana can be developed in daily life, and she invited me to
            her house. From then on I came several times a week with many questions. I
            asked her about belief in God and how to find out the truth. She answered:
            what is truth will appear. She also helped me to see what is clinging,
            clinging to a belief. I had never considered this before. She said from the
            beginning that in the teaching of Dhamma, the person who teaches is not
            important, it is not the person but it is the Dhamma that matters.
            This was new also for Thais; in Asean countries there is a great respect for
            teachers (sensei!) and people tend to follow what teachers say, especially
            when they are bhikkhus. When teachers wrote about Dhamma in olden times they
            would not mention the source of their quotes. A. Sujin greatly contributed
            to a change in this mentality, always encouraging to looking up the texts
            oneself, verifying the truth for oneself. She started interest in the
            translations of Commentaries and promoted this. I remember our visits to the
            library of Wat Bovornives and our conversations with monks. A friend made
            notes and gradually Commentaries in Thai were printed.
            A. Sujin gave lectures in a temple every Sunday and quoted suttas. She asked
            a monk ahead of time about the Commentary to the relevant text. I tried to
            look up the suttas in my English editions.
            (This is all for now, it will be continued.)
            Nina.
          • yu_zhonghao
            Hi Azita, Thank you for your reply. Some more rhetorical questions: Can one experience calm and peacefulness while being greedy? When one is greedy, how can
            Message 5 of 26 , Jul 2, 2003
            • 0 Attachment
              Hi Azita,

              Thank you for your reply.

              Some more rhetorical questions:
              Can one experience calm and peacefulness while being greedy? When
              one is greedy, how can he or she experience calm and peacefulness?

              Being calm is not the same as being greedy. Calm is different from
              greed. Likewise, experiencing subtle pleasant feeling is not the
              same as being greedy. Subtle pleasant feeling is different from
              greed.

              Your question "Nibbana can only be experienced by wholesome
              cetasikas, but afterwards when there is thinking about Nibbana, can
              it not then be 'desired'?" reminds me of this discourse:

              Samyutta Nikaya LI.15
              Brahmana Sutta
              To Unnabha the Brahman
              http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/samyutta/sn51-015.html

              Thank you again for your reply. Your comment is appreciated. If you
              like, let me know how you understand the discourse.

              Peace,
              Victor

              --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "gazita2002"
              <gazita2002@y...> wrote:
              [snip]
              >
              > Dear Victor,
              > I'm not as certain as you that calm and peacefulness are
              > necessarily wholesome, they can be but unless there is the wisdom
              to
              > really know at the time, they can also be unwholesome, just subtle
              > pleasant feeling, lobha.
              >
              > > Regarding 'wrong practice', what 'wrong practice' are you
              refering
              > > to?
              > >
              > In relation to what I've just previously stated, I believe
              that
              > unless Panna is developed to the stage of knowing what is right
              and
              > wrong practice, then there always is the danger of taking akusala
              for
              > kusala. For example, if during meditation, I feel really calm and
              > peaceful, I don't know for sure if that's the calm of samatha or
              just
              > good ole' Lobha. Now, if Panna arose then Panna would know. I'll
              > bet its good ole Lobha.
              >
              [snip]
              > I had to think hard about this one, Victor. You are saying
              that
              > an object that is clung to cannot be the cessation of clinging,
              right?
              > I agree bec. Nibbana can only be experienced by wholesome
              cetasikas,
              > but afterwards when there is thinking about Nibbana, can it not
              then
              > be 'desired'? Can it not then be an object of clinging?
              > Looking forward to your, or anyone's, comment on this.
              > patience, courage and good cheer,
              > Azita
            • gazita2002
              ... dear Victor, perhaps not while being greedy, but I believe with very subtle lobha, one can feel very peaceful e.g. imagine being on holidays, lying back on
              Message 6 of 26 , Jul 2, 2003
              • 0 Attachment
                --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "yu_zhonghao"
                <yu_zhonghao@y...> wrote:
                > Hi Azita,
                >
                > Thank you for your reply.
                >
                > Some more rhetorical questions:
                > Can one experience calm and peacefulness while being greedy? When
                > one is greedy, how can he or she experience calm and peacefulness?
                >

                dear Victor,
                perhaps not while being greedy, but I believe with very subtle
                lobha, one can feel very peaceful e.g. imagine being on holidays,
                lying back on the beach, beautiful weather, without a care in the
                world at the moment, for me, that's very peaceful but I wouldn't say
                it was kusala.

                -snip-
                , let me know how you understand the discourse.
                >
                > Peace,
                > Victor
                >
                Regarding the discourse, I'm wondering if the desire that's
                spoken about is Chanda, which is desire-to-do, rather than Lobha.
                The discourse is very uplifting, but if I didn't have some knowledge
                of Abhidhamma, I would think that 'I' could do something to attain
                Enlightenment.
                I want to quote something that I just read from Nina:
                'so long as we have many defilements which arise time and again
                and we have desire for the realization of the 4 Noble Truths, we are
                very far from the goal'.
                I know that I don't know just h0w deep 'my' defilements are, but
                I'm fairly certain that there is a lot more akusala in a day than
                kusala.
                Cessation is not attained by wishing, it is attained by
                Knowledge, and I quote here from Kom:
                'the 1st stage of insight is the distinction bet. nama and rupa.
                Without this stage of insight, the person still holds dear all the
                Khandhas as being truly theirs.'

                I present my question about Nibbana a little differently.
                In Nina's book 'Conditions' p36, it says 'anything can be object of
                clinging, except Nibbana'. Why is this?

                Thanks for dragging me out of the lurkers' corner, Victor.
                patience, courage and good cheer,
                Azita
              • bodhi2500
                Hi Azita and Victor ... of ... My understanding is that not only Nibbana but also the Lokuttara Magga and Phala cittas and cetasikas of
                Message 7 of 26 , Jul 3, 2003
                • 0 Attachment
                  Hi Azita and Victor

                  --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "gazita2002"
                  <gazita2002@y...> wrote:
                  > I present my question about Nibbana a little differently.
                  > In Nina's book 'Conditions' p36, it says 'anything can be object
                  of
                  > clinging, except Nibbana'. Why is this?
                  >
                  > Thanks for dragging me out of the lurkers' corner, Victor.
                  > patience, courage and good cheer,
                  > Azita

                  My understanding is that not only Nibbana but also the Lokuttara
                  Magga and Phala cittas and cetasikas of Sotapanna,Sakadagami,Anagami
                  and Arahant can not be objects of clinging.

                  My guess on why they cant be objects of clinging is because those
                  states are free from clinging. I think that it may be possible for a
                  Sotapanna to have clinging to the thinking/memory of the experience
                  of Nibbana, but this would be clinging to a concept, not a direct
                  clinging to Nibbana itself.

                  Maybe someone can offer a more knowledgeable answer.

                  Azita, you mentioned in another post that you may be able to make it
                  to the next Cooran meeting? If so looking forward to seeing you again.

                  Take care
                  Steve
                • gazita2002
                  ... Thanks for this, however----- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, bodhi2500 ... Sotapanna,Sakadagami,Anagami ... a ... it ... again.
                  Message 8 of 26 , Jul 4, 2003
                  • 0 Attachment
                    --- Hello Steve,
                    Thanks for this, however-----

                    In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "bodhi2500" <Bodhi2500@a...>
                    wrote:
                    > Hi Azita and Victor
                    >
                    > My understanding is that not only Nibbana but also the Lokuttara
                    > Magga and Phala cittas and cetasikas of
                    Sotapanna,Sakadagami,Anagami
                    > and Arahant can not be objects of clinging.
                    >
                    > My guess on why they cant be objects of clinging is because those
                    > states are free from clinging. I think that it may be possible for
                    a
                    > Sotapanna to have clinging to the thinking/memory of the experience
                    > of Nibbana, but this would be clinging to a concept, not a direct
                    > clinging to Nibbana itself.
                    >
                    > Maybe someone can offer a more knowledgeable answer.
                    >
                    > Azita, you mentioned in another post that you may be able to make
                    it
                    > to the next Cooran meeting? If so looking forward to seeing you
                    again.
                    >
                    > Take care
                    > Steve

                    --I can understand that at the moment of experiencing Nibbana,
                    there is no clinging; have been thinking about it and I wonder if
                    bec. it is so different to anything we now experience eg. conditioned
                    phenomena, that it is an impossibilty to cling to an unconditioned
                    phenomena???
                    If there is no more knowledgeable answer forthcoming, Steve, it
                    may be a good one for discussion at Cooran. I've applied for that
                    w/e off work, so if I get it, I'll be down - with millions of warm
                    clothes!!!!

                    See you then,
                    patience, courage and good cheer,
                    Azita
                  • nina van gorkom
                    Dear Kio and all, Kio asked: In the last post, you said: I became used to the different types of citta, consciousness. What was the few specific incidents
                    Message 9 of 26 , Jul 7, 2003
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Dear Kio and all,
                      Kio asked:
                      In the last post, you said: "I became used to the different types of
                      citta, consciousness." What was the few specific incidents in your
                      early days that you found the glimpse of dhamma?
                      Nina:
                      My time with A. Sujin 3.
                      At breakfast I listened to A. Sujin¹s radio program and heard time and again
                      the terms denoting the different cittas arising in sense-door processes and
                      mind-door processes. Thai and Pali are very close, and in this way I could
                      learn all these terms. But becoming used to these terms does not mean
                      experiencing all the different cittas. A. Sujin explained that intellectual
                      understanding is a foundation for awareness that can arise later on. She
                      stressed foundation knowledge, knowledge of the details of cittas, of their
                      different characteristics, of cetasikas (mental factors), such as feeling,
                      akusala cetasikas, beautiful cetasikas and rupas. Indeed, as we read in the
                      suttas, listening, considering are most important conditions for the arising
                      of satipatthana, sati and panna that directly realize characteristics of
                      nama and rupa.
                      We begin to recognize attachment, lobha, and aversion, dosa, in our lives,
                      and this is useful, but we should not take this for awareness. For many
                      years I thought that thinking was awareness. We may think without words,
                      recognize realities very quickly, but, when we are very sincere, there is
                      still an idea of self who does so. It is not panna of satipatthana.
                      I began to know that laughing is conditioned by lobha, and this made me feel
                      somewhat uneasy when laughing. I had an idea of wanting to suppress
                      laughing. Lobha again. A. Sujin explained that we should behave very
                      naturally, and not force ourselves not to laugh. Just do everything that you
                      are used to doing, but in between right understanding can be developed. ³We
                      have to know our good moments and our worst moments in a day², she said. I
                      read a sutta where the Buddha spoke to the monks about women and compared a
                      woman to a snake. I did not like that. A. Sujin answered that this sutta can
                      remind us of our accumulated defilements. If right understanding is not
                      developed, accumulated defilements can cause the arising of many kinds of
                      aksuala, and then we are like a snake. In other words, we should profit from
                      the message contained in a sutta, learning how dangerous akusala is.
                      Moreover, by this sutta the Buddha warned the monks of the danger of getting
                      involved with women.
                      A. Sujin helped me to see the danger of what is accumulated in past lives.
                      We never know how these accumulations can condition cittas at the present.
                      We may do things we did not believe ourselves capable of.
                      When I listened to her lectures in the temple I became sometimes depressed
                      when I realized how difficult the development of right understanding is.
                      Would I ever be able to reach the goal? But I had no inclinations to look
                      for another way that could hasten the development of right understanding. A.
                      Sujin explained that clinging to progress will not help us at all. When we
                      have more understanding of aeons we will be less inclined to think of
                      progress. Before this life there were aeons of ignorance, and in this life
                      we are fortunate to be able to listen to the teachings and begin to
                      understand the way of development of the eightfold Path. But it has to be a
                      long way before we reach the goal. We can learn to accept that this will
                      take more than one life.
                      Time and again A. Sujin repeated what the Buddha said in the Exhortation to
                      the Patimokkha: Patience is the greatest ascetism.
                      Nina
                      (to be continued).
                    • Jonothan Abbott
                      Nina I m enjoying this series very much. Many things I haven t heard before. Also, I much admire your accumulations for making notes of what you hear and
                      Message 10 of 26 , Jul 9, 2003
                      • 0 Attachment
                        Nina

                        I'm enjoying this series very much. Many things I haven't heard
                        before. Also, I much admire your accumulations for making notes of
                        what you hear and then setting it out for others to read -- a great
                        benefit to many, many people.

                        Jon

                        --- nina van gorkom <nilo@...> wrote: > Dear Kio and all,
                        > Kio asked:
                        > In the last post, you said: "I became used to the different types
                        > of
                        > citta, consciousness." What was the few specific incidents in your
                        > early days that you found the glimpse of dhamma?
                        > Nina:
                        > My time with A. Sujin 3.
                        > At breakfast I listened to A. Sujin¹s radio program and heard time
                        > and again


                        _______________________________________________________________________
                        Do You Yahoo!?
                        Get your free @... address at http://mail.english.yahoo.com.hk
                      • nina van gorkom
                        Dear Kiyo, I am only taking out one remark from your letter. ... My time with A. Sujin. 4 A. Sujin taught me what is kusala and what is akusala by her example.
                        Message 11 of 26 , Jul 9, 2003
                        • 0 Attachment
                          Dear Kiyo,
                          I am only taking out one remark from your letter.
                          op 29-06-2003 20:42 schreef suzakico op suzaki@...:

                          > practicing the `process' (may I also say, sila-
                          > samadhi-panna?) will lead to elimination of suffering.

                          My time with A. Sujin. 4

                          A. Sujin taught me what is kusala and what is akusala by her example. The
                          observing of precepts is not a matter of rules one has to follow. She
                          explained that there is no self who can direct the arising of kusala, that
                          it is sati which conditions refraining from akusala and performing kusala.
                          Since I was in the diplomatic service I went to cocktail parties and took
                          drinks. A. Sujin would never say, don¹t drink. She would explain that it is
                          sati that makes one refrain from akusala. Gradually I had less inclinations
                          to drinking, and this happened because of conditions. I did not know that
                          killing snakes or insects was akusala. When I was in A. Sujin¹s house, we
                          were having some sweets, and when flies were eating some crumbs on the
                          floor, A. Sujin said, we let them enjoy these too. I had never considered
                          before to give flies something they would enjoy, it was a new idea to me. I
                          learnt more in detail what was kusala, what akusala. I began to refrain from
                          killing insects and snakes. She also taught me that it is kusala sila to pay
                          respect to monks, because the monks observe so many rules. She taught me to
                          kneel down and pay respect in the proper way, touching the floor with
                          forehead and hands three times. She taught me the importance of the Vinaya,
                          and she explained that we laypeople should help the monks by our conduct to
                          observe the Vinaya. We should not give money to them, but hand it to the
                          layperson in charge. When we are in conversation with the monks we should
                          not chat on matters not related to Dhamma. Together with her elderly father
                          we visited temples and offered food. We often had lunch with her father in
                          his favoured restaurant where they served finely sliced pork (mu han in
                          Thai). We did not talk on Dhamma very much at such occasions, but I noticed
                          A. Sujin¹s feeling of urgency, never being forgetful of the Dhamma, whatever
                          she was doing. I was clinging very much to Dhamma talks, but throughout the
                          years I learnt that we do not need to talk on Dhamma all the time, but that
                          we should reflect on Dhamma and apply Dhamma in our life. A. Sujin is always
                          such an inspiring example of the application of Dhamma.
                          When we read the Visuddhimagga we see the three divisions of sila,
                          concentration and panna. We may think of a specific order. However, A. Sujin
                          explained that this is the order of teaching, that there is not a specific
                          order according to which we should practise. When we carefully read about
                          sila, we see that all degrees of sila are dealt with, from the lower degrees
                          up to the highest degrees: the eradication of all defilements.
                          Having kindness for flies and abstaining from killing is sila. Being
                          respectful to monks is sila. Being patient in all situations is sila.
                          Satipatthana is sila: we should remember the text about restraint of the six
                          doors by mindfulness. It is satipatthana which is the condition for
                          abstaining from akusala.
                          As to concentration or calm, this has many degrees. There is calm with each
                          kusala citta. Calm is not a feeling of calm, it means the absence of
                          akusala. When we cling to silence and to being calm, there is lobha, not
                          calm. Panna has to be very keen to know exactly which moment is akusala and
                          which moment of kusala, otherwise we shall not know the characteristic of
                          calm. When there is awareness of nama or rupa there is also true calm at
                          that moment. As panna grows, calm grows as well. The eradication of
                          defilements is the highest degree of calm. A. Sujin often stressed: when
                          there is right awareness of a nama or rupa there is at that moment higher
                          sila, higher calm and higher panna.
                          Nina.
                          (to be continued)
                        • yu_zhonghao
                          Hi Azita, Thank you for your reply. Couple points: 1. Being on holidays, lying back on the beach in beautiful weather, one can feel quite peaceful. This is a
                          Message 12 of 26 , Jul 9, 2003
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Hi Azita,

                            Thank you for your reply.

                            Couple points:

                            1. Being on holidays, lying back on the beach in beautiful weather,
                            one can feel quite peaceful. This is a refined pleasant feeling.

                            2. This pleasant feeling is not the same as lobha/greed. A pleasant
                            feeling is neither wholesome nor unwholesome. Lobha/greed, subtle
                            or not, on the other hand, is unwholesome.

                            3. This pleasant feeling, however, is impermanent,
                            dukkha/unsatisfactory, and it is to be seen as it actually is with
                            right discernment thus: "This is not mine. This I am not. This is
                            not my self."

                            4. If one does not have the desire/motivation to realize the
                            cessation of the dukkha, one would never get there. With
                            desire/motivation to reach the cessation of the dukkha, one takes
                            the noble eightfold path, which leads to the cessation of dukkha.
                            Once the goal is achieved, liberation attained, there is nothing
                            left to be done.

                            5. When you say that cessation is not attained by wishing, it is
                            attained by Knowledge, do you mean that it is the noble eightfold
                            path that leads to the cessation of dukkha, and this noble eightfold
                            path is to be developed?

                            Your comments are appreciated.

                            Peace,
                            Victor

                            --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "gazita2002"
                            <gazita2002@y...> wrote:
                            [snip]
                            > dear Victor,
                            > perhaps not while being greedy, but I believe with very
                            subtle
                            > lobha, one can feel very peaceful e.g. imagine being on holidays,
                            > lying back on the beach, beautiful weather, without a care in the
                            > world at the moment, for me, that's very peaceful but I wouldn't
                            say
                            > it was kusala.
                            >
                            [snip]
                            > Regarding the discourse, I'm wondering if the desire that's
                            > spoken about is Chanda, which is desire-to-do, rather than Lobha.
                            > The discourse is very uplifting, but if I didn't have some
                            knowledge
                            > of Abhidhamma, I would think that 'I' could do something to attain
                            > Enlightenment.
                            > I want to quote something that I just read from Nina:
                            > 'so long as we have many defilements which arise time and
                            again
                            > and we have desire for the realization of the 4 Noble Truths, we
                            are
                            > very far from the goal'.
                            > I know that I don't know just h0w deep 'my' defilements are,
                            but
                            > I'm fairly certain that there is a lot more akusala in a day than
                            > kusala.
                            > Cessation is not attained by wishing, it is attained by
                            > Knowledge, and I quote here from Kom:
                            > 'the 1st stage of insight is the distinction bet. nama and
                            rupa.
                            > Without this stage of insight, the person still holds dear all the
                            > Khandhas as being truly theirs.'
                            >
                            > I present my question about Nibbana a little differently.
                            > In Nina's book 'Conditions' p36, it says 'anything can be object
                            of
                            > clinging, except Nibbana'. Why is this?
                            >
                            > Thanks for dragging me out of the lurkers' corner, Victor.
                            > patience, courage and good cheer,
                            > Azita
                          • nina van gorkom
                            Dear Kio, ... N: My time with A. Sujin. 5. A. Sujin helped me to see what is akusala and what is kusala in the situation of daily life. She often said, the
                            Message 13 of 26 , Jul 14, 2003
                            • 0 Attachment
                              Dear Kio,
                              op 29-06-2003 20:42 schreef suzakico op suzaki@...:

                              > are you saying
                              > conditioned thinking is `always' bad, or at times bad? Any comment?
                              N:
                              My time with A. Sujin. 5.

                              A. Sujin helped me to see what is akusala and what is kusala in the
                              situation of daily life. She often said, the teachings are ³not in the
                              book², they are directed to the practice of everyday life. Also the
                              Abhidhamma is not technical, it helps us to have a more refined and detailed
                              knowledge of different cittas as they occur at this moment. When I said that
                              I had enjoyed reading a beautiful sutta, she answered, ²It is so sad when we
                              only think of what is in the book, when we do not apply it.² I realized that
                              we may cling to what we read instead of seeing it as a reminder to develop
                              understanding.
                              A. Sujin introduced me to her friends at her house, where they consulted
                              books of the Tipitaka and discussed points of the Dhamma. She explained to
                              me, ³All we study and discuss is not just for ourselves, it is to be shared
                              with others.² This impressed me very much because I knew very little about
                              sharing kusala with others. It had not occurred to me that even studying the
                              teachings is not just for oneself. She would always help me to have more
                              kusala cittas. When we were in a temple and we had things to offer to the
                              monks she would hand the gifts and books to me, asking me to present them. I
                              was glad to have the opportunity to pay respect to the Triple Gem and show
                              my reverence to the monks. In fact she was helping others all the time to
                              have kusala cittas. We visited Khun Kesinee who wanted to print my book
                              ³Buddhism in Daily Life². Khun Kesinee said, ³Khun Sujin has given me life².
                              This was so true, because she taught us all a new outlook on life, she
                              taught us how right understanding can be developed in our ordinary daily
                              life. She taught us to develop understanding of all phenomena of life in a
                              natural way. Her daughter Khun Amara wrote ³The Lives and Psalms of the
                              Buddha¹s Disciples², inspired by the Thera-therigatha². These are the
                              stories of men and women in the Buddha¹s time who proved in their daily
                              lives that the Path can be developed and enlightenment be attained.
                              A. Sujin and I were very busy to correct the printing proofs of my book,
                              sometimes at night. When we had not heard anything from the printer and I
                              wondered about this, she just answered, ³No news.² This was a good lesson to
                              leave things to conditions and not to expect anything. Later on I thought
                              many times of these words. It is clinging when we expect things to be the
                              way we like them to be.
                              I was glad to meet many of her friends and take part in their life of giving
                              and sharing. We went to temples together with A. Sujin, presenting dana, or
                              attending cremation ceremonies. On Sunday I drove A. Sujin to the temple
                              where she gave lectures on satipatthana and afterwards we sat outside the
                              temple where people asked her more questions about awareness in daily life.
                              Her lectures were put on tape for a radio program. In the course of years
                              the radio stations which sent out her program expanded all over Thailand and
                              to neighbouring countries.
                              I accompanied A. Sujin to different places where people had invited her for
                              a lecture. People were wondering whether there can be awareness of nama and
                              rupa while driving a car. The answer was that it is just the same as being
                              at home, it is normal life. Seeing, thinking or hardness appear time and
                              again. When walking on the street we discussed seeing and thinking of
                              concepts. There were holes in the pavement and if one would only be aware of
                              colour and seeing but not think, one would fall into the holes. We learn
                              that in the ultimate sense there are only nama and rupa, that there are no
                              people, no things. This does not mean that we should not think of people and
                              things. Also thinking of concepts is part of our daily life, we could not
                              function without thinking of concepts. Thinking is a conditioned reality, it
                              is nama, not self. We can think with different types of citta, some are
                              kusala and many are akusala. In the development of satipatthana, we come to
                              know our daily life just as it is.
                              Nina.
                            • nina van gorkom
                              Dear Kio, ... My Time with A. Sujin 7. During a pilgrimage in India with A. Sujin, Phra Dhammadharo, Jonothan and other friends we discussed Dhamma all night
                              Message 14 of 26 , Jul 24, 2003
                              • 0 Attachment
                                Dear Kio,
                                op 29-06-2003 20:42 schreef suzakico op suzaki@...:

                                > the aim is understanding of mind-
                                > matter relationship, by dissecting or rather becoming aware of
                                > specific happenings that we experience in our daily life (that we
                                > were unaware of before). Such insight will enable us to become
                                > aware of what is going on – in terms of cause and effect
                                > relationship

                                My Time with A. Sujin 7.

                                During a pilgrimage in India with A. Sujin, Phra Dhammadharo, Jonothan and
                                other friends we discussed Dhamma all night in the train to Bodhgaya. During
                                that night we discussed the difference between thinking of nama and rupa and
                                direct awareness of them. We may notice that realities appear through
                                different doorways, that sound is experienced through ears and hardness is
                                experienced through the bodysense. However, we may take noticing realities
                                for direct awareness of them. A. Sujin said, ³You may believe, ŒI have
                                developed a great deal of understanding, I sees that there is nothing else
                                but nama and rupa.¹ ² She then explained that in reality this is only
                                thinking, not direct understanding of one nama or rupa at a time. Hearing is
                                nama, it experiences sound. Sound is rupa, it does not experience anything.
                                When hearing arises we think almost immediately of the meaning of the sound,
                                its origin, of words which were spoken and the meaning of those words.
                                Thinking is another type of nama, different from hearing. Her remarks were
                                an eye-opener to me. This shows again how important discussions on the
                                Dhamma are. Without them our misunderstandings of the Dhamma would not
                                appear. That night in the train passed very quickly, and before we realized
                                it we were in Bodhgaya. One of our friends offered breakfast to Phra
                                Dhammadharo and to the Samanera (novice) who was also present.
                                We also stayed in Varanasi, in Hotel de Paris. When we were walking in the
                                garden of that hotel, we heard a band with drums, and immediately we had an
                                image of people marching and playing. A. Sujin explained that we build up
                                stories on account of what we experience through the senses. Sound, hearing
                                and thinking are ultimate realities, the stories we think of are concepts or
                                ideas, different from ultimate realities. It is difficult to distinguish
                                different realities, it is direct understanding, panna, that is able to do
                                so. Panna cannot suddenly arise, it is gradually developed by studying,
                                considering what we learn, discussing, asking questions.
                                We may be thinking of ourselves and others, walking in the garden of Hotel
                                de Paris, but if we die now, the story comes to an end. Actually, each citta
                                that falls away is a moment of dying. With the citta that falls away, the
                                story comes to an end. Many years later Lodewijk and I walked to Hotel de
                                Paris again, and then we saw that it had become neglected and that nothing
                                of it¹s old glory was left.
                                If we try to separate nama from rupa or if we try to think of both nama and
                                rupa, there is only thinking, no awareness of either of them.
                                One may believe that knowing what is going on is right awareness. Someone
                                may know that he sees or that he hears, but that is not satipaììhåna. When
                                right awareness arises it is mindful of the characteristics of nåma and rúpa
                                as they appear one at a time. Right mindfulness and right understanding
                                arise when there are conditions for their arising. They are conditioned by
                                study, listening and considering the Dhamma one heard. Throughout all these
                                years with A. Sujin we discussed again and again what seeing is: the
                                experience of what appears through eyesense. We discussed what hearing is:
                                the experience of what appears through the earsense. We are always forgetful
                                of seeing and hearing, because we are more interested in concepts such as
                                people, things and events. We can never be reminded enough of nåma and rúpa,
                                because these are ultimate realities paññå has to understand. Right
                                understanding of nåma and rúpa leads to detachment from the idea of self.
                                We were reminded that awareness is not self, it cannot be induced. A. Sujin
                                asked us: ²Who is aware?² When we answered, ³Awareness is aware², she said,
                                ²That is in the book, but in your mind?² Such remarks made us realize how
                                much we are still clinging to the idea of ³my awareness².
                                Nina.
                              • nina van gorkom
                                Dear Kio, here is the last of my series. Unless you have more questions :-) ... My Time with A. Sujin. 8. My husband and I took part of many excursions with A.
                                Message 15 of 26 , Jul 27, 2003
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Dear Kio,
                                  here is the last of my series. Unless you have more questions :-)
                                  op 29-06-2003 20:42 schreef suzakico op suzaki@...:

                                  > Such insight will enable us to become
                                  > aware of what is going on – in terms of cause and effect
                                  > relationship to see the cause of suffering, etc. Such cause and
                                  > effect relationship lead to the experiential understanding of four
                                  > noble truths. So, practicing the `process' (may I also say, sila-
                                  > samadhi-panna?) will lead to elimination of suffering.

                                  My Time with A. Sujin. 8.
                                  My husband and I took part of many excursions with A. Sujin and other
                                  friends whenever we visited Thailand again. We went to nature reserves in
                                  the north of Thailand, to Nakom Phanom and other places in the provinces.
                                  For our Dhamma discussions A. Sujin always tries to arrange for pleasant
                                  surroundings and a relaxed atmosphere. With the help of her sister Khun Jeed
                                  and our friend Khun Duangduen she sees to it that we have delicious and
                                  well-balanced meals. There is no end to their hospitality. The right climate
                                  and suitable food can be favourable conditions for the citta that develops
                                  right understanding. During our visits to Thailand and during our
                                  pilgrimages to India we discussed Dhamma and whenever we talked about
                                  personal problems in daily life, she would give us the most practical
                                  advice. This helped us to see our problems in the light of the Dhamma. When
                                  we discussed deep subjects of the Dhamma such as the Dependent origination
                                  and the four noble Truths, she would always relate these to our daily life.
                                  We read in the Tipiìaka about the four noble Truths: dukkha, the cause of
                                  dukkha which is craving, the cessation of dukkha which is nibbåna and the
                                  way leading to the cessation of dukkha, which is the eightfold Path.
                                  A. Sujin stressed that we should not have merely theoretical understanding
                                  of the four noble Truths. Dukkha and the cause of dukkha pertain to our life
                                  at this moment. The way leading to the cessation is the development of right
                                  understanding of the realities appearing at this moment. When insight has
                                  been developed stage by stage nibbåna can be attained.
                                  We read in the "Kindred Sayings" (V, 420, Dhamma-Cakkappavattana vagga, §1),
                                  that the Buddha said, ³in short, the five khandhas are dukkha². When the
                                  arising and falling away of nåma and rúpa , thus their impermanence, is
                                  realized, dukkha can be understood. What falls away immediately is not worth
                                  clinging to, it is dukkha.
                                  We have to develop insight stage by stage. We have to develop understanding
                                  of hardness when it appears through the bodysense during all our activities
                                  in daily life. We do not have to think, this is hard, and we do not have to
                                  think of the place where it touches; its characteristic can be known when it
                                  appears. Gradually we can learn that the characteristic of nåma is
                                  different from the characteristic of rúpa. When we take nåma and rúpa as a
                                  whole, the arising and falling away of nåma and rúpa as they appear one at a
                                  time cannot be realized. They can not be realized as dukkha and we shall
                                  continue to take them for a person or a thing that exists.
                                  Craving, the cause of dukkha, arises time and again and it causes us to
                                  continue in the cycle of birth and death. A. Sujin reminded us to be aware
                                  of clinging at this moment. We should know when there is clinging to
                                  awareness, to having a great deal of understanding. If we do not realize
                                  such moments we do not follow the right Path. Intellectual understanding of
                                  the fact that each reality arises because of its own conditions can help us
                                  to follow the right Path, and then we shall not be inclined to try to select
                                  particular realities as objects of mindfulness and try to make mindfulness
                                  arise. It arises because of its own conditions. She said, ³Awareness is like
                                  an atom in a day², meaning that there are not many moments. How could this
                                  be otherwise; we have accumulated such a great deal of ignorance.
                                  We are in the cycle of birth and death, and during this cycle, cittas arise
                                  and fall away, succeeding one another. Each citta that falls away conditions
                                  the arising of the following citta, and in this way all wholesome and
                                  unwholesome qualities of the past have been accumulated from moment to
                                  moment. Even so all wholesome and unwholesome qualities that arise at the
                                  present are accumulated and they will condition our life in the future. When
                                  ignorance arises today, it does so because it is conditioned by past moments
                                  of ignorance, even during aeons. When understanding arises today, it does so
                                  because it is conditioned by past moments of understanding. Even if there is
                                  a short moment of right understanding now, it is not lost, it is accumulated
                                  and thus there are conditions for its arising later on. A. Sujin said that
                                  this is like saving a penny a day, which can become a big fortune.
                                  During all our journeys and visits to Thailand she stressed that the four
                                  noble Truths are realized in different phases. First there should be firm
                                  understanding of what the object of right understanding is and how right
                                  understanding should be developed. This is the first phase (sacca ñåna,
                                  understanding of the truth). When understanding of the truth, the first
                                  phase, is firmly established, one will not deviate from the right Path, that
                                  is, right awareness and precise understanding of the characteristic of the
                                  reality that appears. The first phase is the foundation of the practice,
                                  which is the second phase (kicca ñåna, understanding of the task). This
                                  again is the foundation of the realization of the truth (kata ñåna,
                                  understanding of what has been done).
                                  I remember that we were walking in India with one of the Thai monks and that
                                  A. Sujin was repeatedly stressing these three phases. Hearing the Dhamma
                                  again and again helps us to remember what was explained and to reflect on
                                  it. When we read about the four noble Truths we may not realize that they
                                  can only be understood and applied in different phases and that we can begin
                                  right now. A. Sujin would always remind us that there is seeing at this
                                  moment. We do not have to be in a quiet place to understand seeing; there is
                                  seeing no matter where we are. Seeing can gradually be known as a reality
                                  that experiences only what appears through the eyes, visible object. This is
                                  the beginning of the first phase of understanding the four noble truths.
                                  The Buddha taught the development of understanding of our life at this very
                                  moment. The Abhidhamma is not technical, not theoretical, it teaches about
                                  citta, cetasika and rúpa, realities arising all the time. I am most grateful
                                  to A. Sujin for pointing out to us time and again that we should understand
                                  our life at this very moment. What she explained is completely in conformity
                                  with the Buddha¹s teachings.
                                  Nina.
                                Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.