Re: the present moment
- Hi TG,
> Conventional impermanence, suffering and non-self is not the same asunderstand where
> the *characteristics* re: anicca, dukkha and anatta.
> TG: Thanks for your long thought out comments. I think I
> you're coming from, I just don't agree with that type of Dhammabut that's OK.
> interpretation. I don't think you understand where I'm coming from,
Yes, I accept the possibility of not truly understanding your
position. This is not surprising, given that so much ignorance arises
all the time and I end up misapprehending situations and other's
verbalizations, hence forever failing to communicate. But as you say,
it's OK, and we try our best. We should be thankful however, that in
our case what does sometime get through, are just these reminders to
each other about the reality of ignorance and other akusala dhammas. ;-)
> One big difference in our approach is that I don't know what a"conventional
> impermanence, suffering, and no-self" would be. In don't believein the
> dichotomizing between conventional and absoluterealities...especially in the
> three qualities you mention.And this is because you consider "conditionality" to be overarching in
importance (yes, I don't always remember that this is where you come
My perception however, is that you are attracted to the particular
"idea" but allowed it to influence and take you away from realizing
the effect of "ignorance" arising at any given moment. You also fail
to correlate ignorance of dhammas to that of conditionality and hence
also the understanding of the one as being also that of the other. The
problem can't be solved simply by having reasoned and come to a
conclusion about `conditionality' and then seeking to "know" and apply
it. Knowing DO is at the end of the infinitely long road of knowing
dhammas by their characteristics and gradually coming to understand
also their function and proximate cause.
> I could just imagine the Buddha's mouth drop openimpermanence,
> if someone in his presence started to talk about "conventional
> suffering, or no-self." LOLstories
> Now, as far as conventional speech, dealing with the narrative and
> which amount to mere delusion, I am well aware of that. I thinkalmost
> everyone in this group is. To keep harping on this point, as if itwas the secret
> hidden knowledge that Nina (and others along that line) had, andthat the
> rest of us are just not "up to speed" with that, shows an almostembarrassing
> naivete from that quarter.Yes TG, yes. It is not a question of preference for one kind of vohara
over another. This is mostly brought up to point out that the Buddha
used it, but that unlike us, neither he nor his direct audience were
fooled by the conventional realities being referred to. That what is
being pointed to of which we of lower understanding are liable to
miss, are the dhammas of the five sense doors and mind. Therefore the
objection is not towards language use, but the constant taking for
reality what is not real and this is expressed unrelated to the
language use itself.
So for example when you insist that it makes no difference whether it
is `chairs' and `tables' or `seeing' and `feeling', both are equally
instructive with regard to the fact of conditionality, the objection
is to the "view" expressed.
> Part 2 ............
> Here's an interesting quote from Samyutta Nikaya, Vol. 1, verse 300
>to indulge in
> "One who desists from sensual perception,
> Who has overcome the fetter of form,
> Who has destroyed delight in existence--
> He does not sink in the deep."
> It seems to me, that Nina and those of her persuasion, not only do not
> desist from sensual perception and form, but generate great efforts
> identifying and holding onto sensual perception and form; byconstantly
> bolstering the paying attention to them (and developing theoriesabout Dhammas)
> ... and claiming such to be the "aim" of the Buddha's teaching.This is a unique characterization of what some of us are saying. ;-)
But take the third line in the verse you quote:
"Who has destroyed delight in existence--"
This would include not only sensual desire, but also Jhana and other
conditioned dhammas. I think you will have noted that much is
expressed here about "vipassana" being the only way whereby the bricks
of samsara are gradually removed. Would not this imply also that
sensual desire is seen as undesirable, at least in principle?
Knowing name and form is seeing the value of "knowing" / vipassana,
and not the `name and form'. It is with this same understanding that
`seeking Jhana' is objected to here. So in fact one is not only
inclining towards "overcoming the fetter of form", but also
discouraging "delight in existence".
But of course all this is at the most infant stage of development,
being still as much as anyone else "submerged" in ignorance and
craving. But it is I believe, looking in the right direction. And
though the development of vipassana is valued but hardly ever arises,
and because one does not `seek' to have more being satisfied with what
ever little intellectual understanding that may arise, this should
prove you wrong in thinking that all this involves "great efforts to
Besides we don't talk about distinguishing panna from tanha (with
wrong view) for nothing. In fact coming to a conclusion about the need
to know present moment realities involves in part, having seen that it
is due largely to being lost in concepts that so much tanha and other
akusala arises in a day. Moreover, the idea of "not catching
realities" expressed by some of us quite often, should also tell you
that tanha is noticed at a slightly deeper level than you perhaps
allow for .?
> It is not the aim. Mindfulness is a practice designed to turnWhatever the development of understanding leads to, it is not ours to
> the mind away from the so called "realities" that you guys indulge in.
bring in any ideas about these and try to manipulate. Our immediate
problem is the constant arising of ignorance which brings with it all
other forms of akusala and which continues to dictate the paths being
I know, I know, all this sounds like projection on my part. All the
more reason to come back to the present moment "reality"! ;-)
> I don't downplay mindfulness,important
> mindfulness is of extreme importance; but its just one of many many
> factors the Buddha taught to "turn the mind away" fromconditionality. The
> PROCESS of mindfulness is to be aware of conditions, the AIM ofmindfulness is
> to turn the mind away from conditions.Tell me, do you see Jhana as being one of those factors, if so, how?
From my perspective, the development of mindfulness and understanding-
satipatthana *is* the development of detachment. However, unlike Jhana
which is detachment from sense objects, this is detachment from all
In the above in stating, "the AIM of mindfulness is to turn the mind
away from conditions" I get the impression that you are saying that
the development of satipatthana can take place without detachment?
This would be misunderstanding of either. The focus should be rather
to point out what in fact satipatthana "knows" re: realities as
against concepts. In the process one will come to recognize better and
better that concepts are not to be indulged in, let alone being
instructive with regard to conditionality. But in fact that only
through knowing realities is conditionality understood and any real
Therefore there is no need to talk about "aiming to be detached from
conditions", this may be missing the point in fact. Moreover, having
failed exactly to distinguish reality from concept, "conditionality"
may remain just another "word".
> Do you folks "get that"? Unlike Nina's claim, The aim of theBuddha's teaching is not to be "watching dhammas."
Perhaps you should learn to characterize Nina's approach first by
replacing "watching" with "understanding". Once this is grasped
properly in your mind, then perhaps you will begin to see no conflict
between "knowing dhammas" and "knowing conditionality". :-)
> There is no such thing as realities and other states which are notSo the experience in the moment, of God, Tao, Oneness, I am That and
so on, this is as real as seeing, sound, anger and feeling etc!? Does
not the perception of God etc take time and involve many thought
moments interspersed with seeing / visible object and so on, and in
contrast "seeing" itself, this is just one particular kind of
> Whatever arises, arises; whatever does not arise, does not arise, thatAnd we are saying that CONCEPTS such as God, table and chair don't
> is all.
arise and you don't seem to care about this! It seems that you are
happy just knowing that one moment there is perception of `God' and
the next of `table' and this apparently is as instructive as
experiencing `seeing' or other realities fall away ..
> Arising and altering is based on conditions, that's all. Its not anthat's all.
> intrinsic nature of "Dhammas." Its just the nature of nature,
> Its the nature of conditionality, that's all.Conditions *are* dhammas and vice versa. Nature is nature because
dhammas are dhammas.
> Conditionality is productive ofconditionality
> affliction in sentient systems/beings. Therefore, escaping
> is the aim...because it entails escaping affliction.Time has come for the main question: :-)
How according to you does one come to understand conditionality?
Yeah, an even longer post this time :-/ Sorry to burden you with it.
- Dear Alex,
Op 4-mei-2008, om 22:45 heeft Alex het volgende geschreven:
> Nina, Scott, KenH and other smart people. Are you arahants, once------
> returners? Is KS an Arahant? Some of you have been studying far more
> than 7 years or 7 days required for Arahatship. What paths and
> fruititions have you reached?
N: This is not the right approach, a question like that. We discuss
Dhamma here, not attainments or non-attainments of persons. Now see
Howard's answer, he answered your post very well.
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