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Re: [DhammaStudyGroup] Re: Discouraging (1.1)-Sarah

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  • Sarah Procter Abbott
    Dear Dan, Thanks for your kind comments. This thread is fathering quite a bit of traffic and I m still on 1.1 too! ... I agree with this. There is so much
    Message 1 of 78 , Jun 4 12:49 AM
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      Dear Dan,

      Thanks for your kind comments. This thread is fathering quite a bit of traffic and I'm still on
      1.1 too!

      Just a couple more points:

      --- Dan Dalthorp <dhd5@...> wrote:
      > It may well be true that it is the cetana that counts, and that good
      > intentions have good results. However, the true intention is so easily
      > cloaked in lobha, dosa, or moha that it is not enough to just think
      > about the intention and to rest easy because we think we have good
      > intentions. Where is the dosa, lobha, moha? Did they root enough of
      > the cittas to make the overall effect of the speech or thought or
      > action akusala?

      I agree with this. There is so much dosa, lobha and moha mixed in with the moments of kusala when
      we speak or act. Those 'cheating' dhammas trick us over and over again. With the growth of
      understanding more layers of the plaintain tree are shed and more akusala cittas and view of self
      are revealed!

      Another point is that even if they seem to be mostly pretty good intentions at our beginner level,
      it maybe that the time or manner is not appropriate for the listener. This can be especially
      difficult on a list. If we think too much about it, nothing will get posted!
      > Hmmm.... Here's where there is a confusion between "being discouraged"
      > and finding someone's writing discouraging. I'm not feeling
      > discouraged at all. But I can see how someone who has studied Dhamma
      > for decades and has an intricate knowledge of the suttas, a good
      > working knowledge of Abhidhamma, a well-developed meditation practice,
      > is interested in learning Dhamma, discussing Dhamma, understanding
      > Dhamma might find something that obscures Dhamma and contradicts
      > Dhamma in the name of Dhamma discouraging. Would they be discouraged?

      If we hear what seems to be inaccurate or wrong view by a CAW or even one of those pesky
      HAABOWHATLs, why do we find it discouraging? Why not turn away or give a useful reminder or

      Actually, doesn't this happen all the time, especially on a list? We hear many different views. To
      end up with the view that 'Everything I ever thought I knew or understood about the Dhamma is
      completely wrong' would not be because one thought one was reading wrong views. Surely it's
      because what one reads makes so much sense that one's 'own' understanding is being questioned and
      some of those layers of wrong view and ignorance are being revealed. As we discussed with Antony,
      it would depend on conditions and tendencies as to whether this new 'revelation' would condition
      dosa, lobha or whatever.

      > Yes, if they take Dhamma as not-Dhamma or not-Dhamma as Dhamma. But
      > when there is understanding of Dhamma, Dhamma is encouraging, while
      > not-Dhamma does not give rise to discouragement even though the sound
      > of it is discouraging ....

      Exactly so. It depends on the understanding. We can study for decades or lifetimes with wrong view
      of self. We can read all the suttas (or even the abhidhamma) with an idea of self, even if we talk
      about anatta.

      Of course sound is only sound. The hearing which hears the sound is kusala or akusala vipaka
      resulting from previous kamma. There is nothing discouraging in the sound. It is the thinking and
      the stories about what has been heard, accompanied by the dosa and domanassa that are
      discouraging......or 'bad news'.

      Dan, i've run out of time, but will be happy to follow on later if you wish...

      Hope you're doing O.K.


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    • Jonothan Abbott
      Bruce Thanks for your good questions. I would just like to add a short commetn to Nina s earlier post. ... As people are often quick to point out, mere
      Message 78 of 78 , Jun 25 8:00 AM
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        Thanks for your good questions. I would just like to add a short commetn
        to Nina's earlier post.

        --- bruce <bmalcolm@...> wrote: > hi jon, hi all
        > i, of course, have the thickest skull of anyone on this list (mana!),
        > re:
        > > Satipatthana is the development of awareness/mindfulness of a reality
        > > appearing at the present moment.
        > >
        > > The prerequisites for the arising of awareness are:
        > > - having met the dhamma, listened to it and considered it at length
        > > - having understood correctly what awareness is, its function and
        > > characteristic and what can be the object of awareness
        > > - applying what one has heard and correctly understood.
        > i just don't get this, as usual....how does one "apply" what one has
        > heard?
        > what is being done? how does one "consider" what one has heard? these
        > sound so active and choice-driven ....is this "applying" and
        > "considering"
        > something that one can choose to do? do you do it, jon? does anyone on
        > the
        > list do it? if so, please, i'd really like a description of and details
        > about how-to-do such an activity, as an "activity" is certainly what it
        > sounds like ....or am i unable to see the forest out of the molehills?

        As people are often quick to point out, mere theoretical knowledge cannot
        lead to the development of the path. What has been heard/read needs to be
        related to one's experience of the present moment.

        There is no 'how-to-do' because there is no activity to be done. At first
        this can be discouraging, because we don't know what to do. But if we
        come to appreciate that this is the path as taught, then the idea that we
        should be doing something ceases to be a problem. It requires a certain
        degree of confidence, because there is no immediately measurable progress
        by conventional reckoning.

        Hope this helps clarify.


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