Re: [dsg] Re: "Dhammas" and Impermanence (The Abhidhammikas perspective?)
- Hi Ken H
You're right. I didn't understand what you were getting at. Any
"sidetracking" was unintentional.
In a message dated 6/30/2007 8:36:47 P.M. Mountain Daylight Time,
I didn't mean to interrupt, but it seems I have to make a federal
case out of this after all. :-)
Before I start, I might comment on the layout of your posts. You said
that AOL was changing the way your posts appeared, and I have to
agree it is disconcerting. Every time (or so it seems) you reply to
one of my posts there are more typo's in my words than were there in
I don't know about AOL, but I have noticed that Yahoo makes cutting
and pasting (into a word processor) harder to than it used to be.
When I cut from the main messages page I lose all the carriage
returns and new paragraph spacings. Sorting them out can lead to
typo's. However, if I click on the message title and bring the
message up on its own then I can cut and paste properly as before.
Moving on to more important matters:
<. . .>
TG: > The Buddha is referring to how the 5 aggregates would appear to
him if inspected, pondered, and investigated carefully.
Its actually a Sutta perspective.
Samyutta Nikaya -- Connected Discourses of the Buddha, Page 951 - 952.
Does this mean you didn't understand a word I said? My point was that
there could be more than one way of interpreting the Buddha's words.
There is no question of "a sutta perspective" as opposed to
an Abhidhamma perspective or a commentarial perspective. They all
have exactly the same perspective. If they didn't there would be
something terribly wrong with the Pali texts.
<. . .>
TG: > Interpreting the Buddha's words can take virtually any path. The
above is just a translation of Bhikkhu Bodhi's. The source for the
top quote was noted earlier in the day regarding this topic so I
figured the reference was well known. But I think its fair to ask for
the reference to be sited on each occasion. I will try to do so in
Once again, you haven't understood my point at all. I was not asking
for sutta references. We all know the sutta you are quoting from in
this case. My point was that the meaning of 'void hollow and
insubstantial' has been discussed many times at great length on DSG.
If you could simply acknowledge the two fundamentally different
interpretations of those words (rather than just saying "Buddha's
words not mine") the conversation could flow much better, and it
would be unnecessarily sidetracked.
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[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- Hi TG
--- In email@example.com, TGrand458@... wrote:
> Hi Jon
> In a message dated 7/25/2007 5:07:08 A.M. Mountain Daylight Time,
> jonabbott@... writes:
> I wonder if the Buddha was really talking about the deconstruction
> conventional objects into elements and aggregates. That seems to me
> to be an exercise in mental gymnastics (to use a term employed by
> Phil recently).
> NEW TG: Seems to me the Buddha's "chariot" and "cow"
> apt examples of deconstructing what we might consider "conventional
> into elements.
Just analysis into parts, I think, to illustrate the lack of an
essential "chariot-ness" or "cow-ness".
> If you're enlightened, or ever mindful without interruption, it
> unnecessary mental gymnastics. If not, then its to the "mental
gym" for the
> rest of us. Unavoidable.
That is but one possible interpretation of the texts: the mental
"breaking down" of what is currently being observed (i.e., thought
The problem with that approach, as I see it, is that concepts (what
is being observed, thought of) do not break down inot elements; they
break down into other concepts.
> Likewise the further reducing of elements into altering,
> selfless, conditioned "happenings"selfless, conditioned
> "thinking about" rather than directly experiencing.
> NEW TG: Sure it is. Without organizing thoughts, mindfulness is
> ignorant as a new born baby. Mindfulness/insight requires the mind
> something about the nature of what is occurring...not just base
> occurrence. The knowledge of conditioned, impermanent,
afflicting, nonself; does not
> arise without doing preliminary work of thinking.
But I think the object of this thinking is concepts, not elements.
> Surely I explained all this in my last post and about how such
> work can set the stage for direct insight to occur...if the effort
Yes, you explained it very clearly. But this explanation is an
inference to be drawn from the suttas rather than something directly
stated. So there is room for me (and the commentaries) to disagree
> To my understanding, what the Buddha spoke of was not
> objects as elements" but "elements as elements".
> Furthermore, it is elements themselves that exhibit the various
> characteristics of which you speak, and it is by a deeper
> understanding of elements that these characteristics become
> NEW TG: Elements are not entities. "They" have nothing "of their
I know you are fond of running this line, but it is a distraction to
the present discussion ;-))
> The Buddha has said that in the case of -- feeling, perception,
> formations, and consciousness...that these things are not
separatable...but are only
> separated in his teaching as a MEANS OF ANALYSIS. The only insight
> that detaches the mind are conditionality with conditionality
nature of --
> impermanence, affliction, and nonself. Whether or not a mind
becomes detached by
> seeing this in corpses, or elements, is irrelevant.
If corpses then why not, say, computers? The list would be endless.
I think the key must be elements, to be the object of panna.
> To my understanding, it is only when elements are seen as they
> are -- as anicca, dukkha and anatta -- that there can be
> towards (turning away from) them.
> NEW TG: I like that. Stick to that and I wouldn't see a
> I have seen Sarah, on the other hand, say that seeing things as
> are means to -- see elements as ultimate realities. That is
Elements to be seen as elements; that's all.
> NEW TG: I'll be gone about 2 weeks. Take care.
Thanks for letting us all know. Looking forward to seeing you back