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Element
26 Apr 12, 21:28
dear Theravada forum & Dhamma friends

i have just discovered this sutta:


Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one, your demise will not be bad. If one's mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment, then when the body — endowed with form, composed of the four primary elements, born from mother & father, nourished with rice & porridge, subject to inconstancy, rubbing, pressing, dissolution & dispersion — is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind — long nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, learning, relinquishment & discernment — rises upward and separates out (uddhagāmi hoti visesagāmi).

Suppose a man were to throw a jar of ghee or a jar of oil into a deep lake of water, where it would break. There the shards & jar-fragments would go down, while the ghee or oil would rise upward and separate out. In the same way, if one's mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment, then when the body... is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind... rises upward and separates out.

Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one, your demise will not be bad.

Mahanama Sutta (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn55/sn55.021.than.html)

˚Gāmin (adj.) [from gacchati, gam] f. ˚iṇī, in composition ˚gāmi˚. -- (a) going, walking, lit.: sīgha˚ walking quickly Sn 381; -- (b) leading to, making for, usually with magga or paṭipadā (gāminī), either lit. Pāṭaliputtagāmi -- magga the road to P

Uddhaŋ (& Uddha˚) (indecl.) [nt. of adj. *uddha = Sk. ūrdhva high; to Idg. ared(h) as in Lat. arduus steep, or ured as in Sk. vardhate to raise, Gr. o)rqo/s straight] high up, on top, above (adv. & prep.). -- On uddhaŋ in spatial, temporal, ethical & psychological application see in detail Nd2 155. -- I. (adv.). -- A. (of space) up, aloft, on top, above (opp. adho) -- In contrast with adho (above > below) -- Esp. with ref. to the points of the compass as "in zenith" (opp. adho "in nadir"), e. g. at D i.222 ("straight up"); It 120; J i.20. <-> B. (of time) in future, ahead, hence Sn 894; Nd1 303 (u. vuccati anāgataŋ). -- II. (prep. with abl. & instr.). <-> A. (of space) in phrase uddhaŋ pādatalā adho kesamatthakā (above the soles & below the scalp)

Visesa [fr. vi+śiṣ, cp. Epic Sk. viśeṣa] 1. (mark of) dis- tinction, characteristic, discrimination -- 2. elegance, splendour, excellence -- 3. distinction, peculiar merit or advantage, eminence, excellence, extraordinary state -- 4. difference, variety -- 5. specific idea (in meditation), attainment -- âdhigama specific attainment -- gāmin reaching distinction, gaining merit -- gū reaching a higher state or attainment -- paccaya ground for distinction -- bhāgiya participating in, or leading to distinction or progress (spiritually)


:confused:

Aloka
26 Apr 12, 21:41
nevertheless the mind... rises upward and separates out.


When I read this, I remembered when I was a teenager (around 14-15 ) wishing for something like this. It was a feeling of wanting to dissolve into space, so that there was no separation from natural phenomena. At that time I wrote a poem about it.

It also appears to be rather similar to Vajrayana Phowa.

http://ayangrinpoche.org/an-introduction-to-phowa/

Element
26 Apr 12, 23:33
...when I was a teenager (around 14-15 ) wishing for something like this...it also appears to be rather similar to Vajrayana Phowa.
yes. it would be expected the discursive imagination would construe this sutta to be similar to Vajrayana Phowa

but the Buddha simply & literally said here: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamani) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished/noble (visesa)

although literal 'rebirth' may be imagined, it appears this is not present in that Sutta. it appears literal 'rebirth' is being inferred, as explained in AN 2.23 (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an02/an02.023.than.html) & AN 2.25 (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an02/an02.025.than.html)

;D

Esho
26 Apr 12, 23:40
When the mind is attached to the mundane, to the worldly stuff of daily life at the break down of the body there will be mental suffering.

Somebody who has not trained her/himself in the doctrine of relinquishment the event of dying or the idea of it will bring outstanding mental suffering.

Also the event of the separation of the compounded elements of the body, the dissolution of its supports and events of this sort that are unavoidable will happen but with a mind at ease with them, if this mind has practiced Gotama's doctrine.

Maybe, there is the temptation to bring into this sutta the idea of a continuum of consiousness, but I don't have that reading from it.

Anyway... :dontknow:

Element
26 Apr 12, 23:58
When the mind is attached to the mundane, to the worldly stuff...there is the temptation to bring into this sutta the idea of a "continuum of consiousness" but I don't give that reading from it.

Yes, it seems so

Buddha has used a physical simile but it seems the translator has interpreted it literally (materialistically) rather than meditatively

using the same words, in SN 12.19 (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn12/sn12.019.than.html), Buddha asked the question:


Tatra , bhikkhave, ko viseso ko adhippayāso kiṃ nānākaraṇaṃ paṇḍitassa bālenā

So what difference, what distinction, what distinguishing factor is there between the wise person & the fool?
Buddha simply & literally said: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamini) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished from the ordinary (visesa)"

:peace:

Element
27 Apr 12, 00:02
Buddha simply & literally said: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamani) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished/noble from the ordinary (visesa)"
and how is the mind ordinary and how is the mind distinguished from the ordinary?


There is the case where an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person — who has no regard for noble ones, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma; who has no regard for men of integrity, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma — assumes form (the body) to be the self, or the self as possessing form, or form as in the self, or the self as in form. He is seized with the idea that 'I am form' or 'Form is mine.' As he is seized with these ideas, his form changes & alters, and he falls into sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress & despair over its change & alteration.

There is the case where a well-instructed disciple of the noble ones — who has regard for noble ones, is well-versed & disciplined in their Dhamma; who has regard for men of integrity, is well-versed & disciplined in their Dhamma — does not assume form to be the self, or the self as possessing form, or form as in the self, or the self as in form. He is not seized with the idea that 'I am form' or 'Form is mine.' As he is not seized with these ideas, his form changes & alters, but he does not fall into sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress or despair over its change & alteration.

SN 22.1 (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn22/sn22.001.than.html)

:peace:

srivijaya
27 Apr 12, 08:49
There was a link to another sutta at the bottom of that one. I found this (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn55/sn55.022.than.html) on there and quite liked it:

"Suppose a tree were leaning toward the east, slanting toward the east, inclining toward the east. When its root is cut, which way would it fall?"

"In whichever way it was leaning, slanting, and inclining, lord."

"In the same way, Mahanama, a disciple of the noble ones, when endowed with four qualities, leans toward Unbinding, slants toward Unbinding, inclines toward Unbinding."
:hands:

Aloka
27 Apr 12, 08:59
but the Buddha simply & literally said here: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamani) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished/noble (visesa

Yes but the Buddha is also talking about what happens at death rather than the mind becoming lofty and noble for someone still living.


"Suppose a man were to throw a jar of ghee or a jar of oil into a deep lake of water, where it would break. There the shards & jar-fragments would go down, while the ghee or oil would rise upward and separate out.

In the same way, if one's mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment,

then when the body... is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind... rises upward and separates out.

Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one, your demise will not be bad.





My own interpretation from the the English translation of the sutta is that it might mean that with correct practice, at the death of the body, the unbound mind dissolves into space.

:hands:

JadeRabbit
27 Apr 12, 11:24
Hi

I'm very confused by this sutta. Is it implying that the mind and body are separated at the time of death?

:confused:

Deshy
27 Apr 12, 17:49
distinguished/noble (visesa)



This is very well put. Thank you...

The translation "separates out" is very misleading. Translators are inclined to interpret words according to their beliefs or prejudices. He tends to pick a different shade of the meaning, which enhances his point rather than selecting what makes more sense holistically. I say holistically because, saying the mind separates from the body is not very much in line with the rest of the Buddha's teachings as a whole.

As Element said, the translation of the word visesa is distinguished . It makes more sense. Even in sinhala language, the word visesa (pronounced as visesha) means "special" or "eminent". I think the word is a pali to sinhala absorption.

So, this is spot on:



but the Buddha simply & literally said here: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamani) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished/noble (visesa)

Deshy
27 Apr 12, 17:55
Hi

I'm very confused by this sutta. Is it implying that the mind and body are separated at the time of death?

:confused:

Please read post #3

Aloka
27 Apr 12, 18:24
As Element said, the translation of the word visesa is distinguished . It makes more sense. Even in sinhala language, the word visesa (pronounced as visesha) means "special" or "eminent". I think the word is a pali to sinhala absorption.

So, this is spot on:



but the Buddha simply & literally said here: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamani) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished/noble (visesa)

OK thanks Deshy.

On reflection I don't think there's a lot of point in people who don't understand Pali attempting to taking part in a topic like this, because if one doesn't understand Pali, then theres nothing that can actually be discussed.

So how does this relate to death which is also mentioned in the sutta.? (Question meant for someone who is studying Pali, please )

It seems very basic to have a sutta which is just saying that if the mind is lofty/ noble then one will have a good death.

One also doesn't even need to be practising the Dharma to be able to figure out that if one has an accepting, calm mind then it would make the suffering of death easier.


:hands:

Deshy
28 Apr 12, 09:01
I don't think there's a lot of point in people who don't understand Pali attempting to taking part in a topic like this, because if one doesn't understand Pali, then theres nothing that can actually be discussed.

Resources are all over the Internet and offline. It doesn't take that much effort to look up the meaning of a word and make a sensible judgement based on the context and the Buddha's teachings as a whole.

The word visesa has several meanings. Distinction/separation does not fit in here. I think the more commonly used meaning is eminence given the fact that it is absorbed so by other languages which are influenced by pali. The word eminence makes more sense to me in this sutta. Thus the comment.



So how does this relate to death which is also mentioned in the sutta.? (Question meant for someone who is studying Pali, please )

Studying pali or not, it is unlikely the Buddha is suggesting the mind's separation from the physical body after death or the mind's existance separate from the physical body. Do you know of other suttas where the Buddha could be suggesting such a thing?

Aloka
28 Apr 12, 09:23
Do you know of other suttas where the Buddha could be suggesting such a thing?

No I don't, because I've only got the book of B. Bodhi's MN sutta translations and an AN anthology. Other than that I just browse suttas sites occasionally for any others - no time for much extra reading at the moment.

Deshy
28 Apr 12, 09:36
No I don't, because I've only got the book of B.Bodhi's MN sutta translations and an AN anthology. Other than that I just browse suttas sites occasionally for any others - no time for much extra reading at the moment.

Nonetheless, there are so many other suttas where the Buddha explains the benefits of a developed mind, inclined towards virture, relinquishment and discernment, to be experienced in this life. Therefore, it is my best judgement that he does not make an exception here. To say that he suggests the mind's separation from the body is not in line with his teachings as a whole and based on a possible misinterpretation of pali.

Aloka
28 Apr 12, 09:49
OK fine ..... I was just exploring a little, lol !

Deshy
28 Apr 12, 09:53
I know ;)

alfred
29 Apr 12, 07:39
All i can say is welldone for finding this.:P:hands:

Victorious
01 May 12, 20:20
yes. it would be expected the discursive imagination would construe this sutta to be similar to Vajrayana Phowa

but the Buddha simply & literally said here: "if the mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment then this leads (gamani) the mind (citta) to becoming (hoti) lofty (uddha) and distinguished/noble (visesa)

although literal 'rebirth' may be imagined, it appears this is not present in that Sutta. it appears literal 'rebirth' is being inferred, as explained in AN 2.23 (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an02/an02.023.than.html) & AN 2.25 (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an02/an02.025.than.html)

;D

I am sorry but what you are saying is that the phrase "rises upward and separates out" (uddhagāmi hoti visesagāmi). Should be translated "Becomes lofty and noble" rigth?

So the interpretation of the sutta you quoted in the beginning would then be: (correct me if I am wrong) See the changes in Bold type


Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one, your demise will not be bad. If one's mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment, then when the body — endowed with form, composed of the four primary elements, born from mother & father, nourished with rice & porridge, subject to inconstancy, rubbing, pressing, dissolution & dispersion — is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind — long nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, learning, relinquishment & discernment —Becomes lofty and noble.

Suppose a man were to throw a jar of ghee or a jar of oil into a deep lake of water, where it would break. There the shards & jar-fragments would go down, while the ghee or oil would Becomes lofty and noble. In the same way, if one's mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment, then when the body... is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind... Becomes lofty and noble.



So during the body being eaten by different animals the mind becomes lofty and noble?

That sounds not at all logical to me.

What does it even mean? Why would anybody care how noble the mind becomes while ones body is eaten by animals?

No sorry I cant see it. But I am open for suggestions.

And on a second thought what about the Ghee becomming lofty and noble? What is noble about Ghee? Is it not much more logical that the Ghee which is fat will rise in the water, keeping seperate from it as the shards sink to the bottom? And that that is the meaning of the sutta to be applied also to the mind at this passage?

/Victor

Stefos
01 May 12, 22:45
Yes but the Buddha is also talking about what happens at death rather than the mind becoming lofty and noble for someone still living.




My own interpretation from the the English translation of the sutta is that it might mean that with correct practice, at the death of the body, the unbound mind dissolves into space.

:hands:

Hi Aloka,

THIS is the reason why I am against certain "buddhists" stating that Nibbanna is only a "psychological state/philosophical frame of mind."

It is not, as the concept of rebirth undermines the above statement, which actually degrades Nibbana to a "brain bound concept." This is not to say that at least something can't be said about what Nibbana actually is. If a person can communicate metaphor, simile and analogy being abstractions work and Nibbana was described like that exactly by the Buddha along with the Buddha stating that it's "fruit" is for here and now also.

This verse actually proves that the Vajrayana Phowa concept, not practice necessarily, is part of Buddhadhamma.

Thank you,
Stefos

Aloka
01 May 12, 22:58
THIS is the reason why I am against certain "buddhists" stating that Nibbanna is only a "psychological state/philosophical frame of mind."

It is not, as the concept of rebirth undermines the above statement, which actually degrades Nibbana to a "brain bound concept."


Hi Stephos,

Have you read our Code of Conduct #16 ?

My own position regarding rebirth is neutral, because I don't consider that speculating about it one way or another has any relevence to my practice here and now.

My comment about the possibility of the mind dissolving into space at death had nothing to do with rebirth.

kind regards,

Aloka

Stefos
02 May 12, 03:03
Hi Stephos,

Have you read our Code of Conduct #16 ?

My own position regarding rebirth is neutral, because I don't consider that speculating about it one way or another has any relevence to my practice here and now.

My comment about the possibility of the mind dissolving into space at death had nothing to do with rebirth.

kind regards,

Aloka

Hi Aloka,

I understand your concerns about the code of conduct.

I want to state my position clearly and with qualification, not argue which does nothing other than agitate and embitter.

Having said this, What exactly DO you mean about unbound mind dissolving into space if not a metaphysical stance?

Also, Could you perhaps explain why the reticence to not allow the discussion of rebirth or not in this forum please?
I saw nothing in the Code of Conduct saying that people couldn't discuss this issue, in all honesty.

To me, Buddhadharma is one body of teaching with a clear start and clear goal, but modern Buddhist schools do not reflect the Buddha's intent fully, which to someone like me is saddening.

Thank you and Be well sir,
Stefos

Element
02 May 12, 04:07
So during the body being eaten by different animals the mind becomes lofty and noble? That sounds not at all logical to me.
hi Victor

It does not sound logical because it is imagined what is occuring to the body & mind happening at the same time. However, this is not explicit in the discourse. Consider reading the discourse 'spiritually' rather than 'materialistically'. Try to generate the liberation of mind the Buddha is promoting when speaking these words.

Regarding your appeal to logic, it seems to not be logical either because Theravadins believe rebirth occurs at the moment of death (and not when the body is being eaten by animals).


What does it even mean? Why would anybody care how noble the mind becomes while ones body is eaten by animals?No sorry I cant see it. But I am open for suggestions.

Yes. As I suggested above.


And on a second thought what about the Ghee becomming lofty and noble? What is noble about Ghee? Is it not much more logical that the Ghee which is fat will rise in the water, keeping seperate from it as the shards sink to the bottom? And that that is the meaning of the sutta to be applied also to the mind at this passage?
Imo, it is just a play on words; just a metaphor. We must bear in mind the language used by the Buddha is ancient language, which, like much language, is derived from words that originally referred to physical things. For example, I once heard 'panna' (wisdom), is derived from what was originally 'sword'.

Similarly, words such as patipatta ('path of practise') are derived from the word for "walking".

As a fellow Singalese, Deshy has mentioned the contemporary psychological meaning of visesa. But, in the Buddha's time, it seems the word could be applied in two ways, just as the word "cultivation" can be used both physically & mentally.

Regards ;D

Aloka
02 May 12, 05:24
Hi Aloka,

I understand your concerns about the code of conduct.

I want to state my position clearly and with qualification, not argue which does nothing other than agitate and embitter.

Having said this, What exactly DO you mean about unbound mind dissolving into space if not a metaphysical stance?

Also, Could you perhaps explain why the reticence to not allow the discussion of rebirth or not in this forum please?
I saw nothing in the Code of Conduct saying that people couldn't discuss this issue, in all honesty.

To me, Buddhadharma is one body of teaching with a clear start and clear goal, but modern Buddhist schools do not reflect the Buddha's intent fully, which to someone like me is saddening.

Thank you and Be well sir,
Stefos

Hi Stephos,

Firstly please don't call me 'sir' (or miss or ma'am) there's no need for formality. I don't live in the USA and I am a woman, as I mentioned to you in another post somewhere.

My comment about mind dissolving into space was my own fanciful guess according to the Thanissaro Bhikkhu translation and not meant as a firm statement of fact.

Where did I say rebirth can't be discussed at BWB ? We've had lots of topics about it in the past.

Please be aware however, that this a thread in the Theravada forum about a particular sutta, rather than a general rebirth debate.

Another topic is welcome in Beyond Belief or in the General Buddhist discussions forums if you want to debate rebirth with our members.

Thanks :hands:

PS

When people write words in capital letters in their posts to me, it always reminds me of shouting......

Deshy
02 May 12, 15:33
No sorry I cant see it. But I am open for suggestions.



I suggest that you try to comprehend the sutta's meaning by considering the Buddha's teachings as a whole. His teachings usually reflect the importance of mental development and letting go. What the Buddha probably says here is that even when a body, which is nourished by wholesome food, gets weak, beaten up or eaten by animals, a mind that is nourished by relinquishment and discernment becomes noble and sublime.

In other words, if your mind is well cultivated, you will not experience mental suffering when you are physically harmed (note that the sutta doesn't necessarily mention death). This is why the Buddha tells his disciple not to fear death because for such a person, death or physical pain could be less suffering.

Then he uses a simile to emphasize how such a developed, cultivated mind is unspoiled and unaffected by physical tragedies. There are instances where the Buddha taught dhamma, specially to lay disciples, using similes such as these. Ghee in water is simile for a developed, cultivated mind. Ghee rises higher like a developed mind (implying noble and supreme, surpassing the mundane) and it doesn't get mixed in water like a mind unaffected by common tragedies. With such a mind, facing death is not to be feared. Sounds like a perfect teaching by the Buddha.

Also, just because vesesa has one meaning in one place, it doesn't need to have the same meaning everywhere it is used, even in the same sutta. For the record, I think that the primary meaning of visesa should be noble or eminent given the fact that the word is absorbed so by other languages which are influenced by pali. This is just a calculated guess. However, the word visesa also has secondary meanings. Sometimes in translations like these, you need to make a sensible judgment as to what one word could mean in a particular context. There is not much use in copying and pasting a set of words and making it bold to make a point which is irrational and does not complement the rest of the dhamma.

Esho
02 May 12, 18:43
Then he uses a simile to emphasize how such a developed, cultivated mind is unspoiled and unaffected by physical tragedies.

From this, maybe it can be of some help to quote this sutta just to give some context to the Mahanama Sutta:


[...]what is the distinction, the diversity, the difference that exists herein between a well-taught noble disciple and an untaught worldling?

"When an untaught worldling is touched by a painful (bodily) feeling, he worries and grieves, he laments, beats his breast, weeps and is distraught. He thus experiences two kinds of feelings, a bodily and a mental feeling.

[...]

"But in the case of a well-taught noble disciple, O monks, when he is touched by a painful feeling, he will not worry nor grieve and lament, he will not beat his breast and weep, nor will he be distraught. It is one kind of feeling he experiences, a bodily one, but not a mental feeling.

[...]

"This, O monks, is the distinction, the diversity, the difference that exists between a well-taught noble disciple and an untaught worldling."

Sallatha Sutta (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn36/sn36.006.nypo.html)



:peace:

Element
02 May 12, 20:42
for me, the highlight of the Mahanama Sutta is the Buddha's compassion

there is Mahanama, a faithful lay follower (but contrary to dubious commentary, not appearing to be a stream enterer)

Mahanama has fears about dying with mind without mindfulness & clear comprehension

Buddha assures Mahanama with compassion & sets Mahamana's mind free from fear


****

Buddha taught there are three kinds of gifts:

(1) the gift of material gifts & helpful acts;

(2) the gift of fearlessness (safety)

(3) the gift of equality

Buddha has gifted 'no fear', to a faithful friend, uplifting his mind with some liberation from 'self' obsession

:peace:

Deshy
03 May 12, 17:49
I kind of agree that Mahanama was probably not a stream enterer... He was apparently fretting over death. So when the Buddha said that a man with a mind well cultivated had no reason to fear death, he probably said so with compassion and with the sole purpose of consoling the worried (and probably old) disciple.

However, if someone is to take a lesson from the sutta, that IMO is the benefit of cultivating wholesome mental qualities, to be experienced in this life, even when faced with death or physical harm.

Element
03 May 12, 21:31
...with the sole purpose of consoling the worried (and probably old) disciple.
yes, it is important to not overlook the context here that Buddha was essentially teaching a puthujjana

Victorious
03 May 12, 22:25
Hi Element.

I think that you are overcomplicating things and seeing things that are not there. I can understand your point and actually agree but I do not think this sutta portrays it.

As you say it is important to keep the context in mind.

1. Mahanama was a lay follower.
2. His question is that of what happens after Death in both suttas.

I.e. he asks:

]At times like that [/B]my mindfulness with regard to the Blessed One gets muddled, my mindfulness with regard to the Dhamma... the Sangha gets muddled. The thought occurs to me, 'If I were to die at this moment, what would be my destination? What would be my future course?"


What he is afraid of is the age old dilemma for people beliving in reincarnation. According to popular belief the state of the mind at the moment of death is instrumental for future reincarnation. That is why you recite gatas and the merituous deeds of the person near death (or dead) in his presence so his mind will be at peace and can thus reach a higher state of reincarnation.

Mahanama is worried that if he dies at a moment when his minds is muddled he will fall into a bad reincarnation.

And that is the question that is answered. The reference to diffrent animals eating of the body is because of the old indian tradition to leave the dead unburied in those days cemetaries. A custom that still prevails in Tibet and some places in India (as you well probably know.) In Tibet I have heard that some even cut the body to pieces so the animals can eat it easier.

So whatever happens to the mind in this sutta happens after physical death of the body.

If the answer is that a well trained mind rises and seperates out that would probably imply that reincarnation in a better place is meant. But if the mind after death becomes lofty and noble there is no rationality to that notion. Why would a mind change state just because of physical death?

Being pretty bad at pali I would love if you would take the time and translate the entire sutta according to how you see it?

Btw two things

1. Are you Sri Lankan?
2. I do not really give a hoot when the Theravadians think that rebirth occurs. And I do not think you do either. Am I right?

Best regards
/Victor

Victorious
03 May 12, 22:34
Also, just because vesesa has one meaning in one place, it doesn't need to have the same meaning everywhere it is used, even in the same sutta. For the record, I think that the primary meaning of visesa should be noble or eminent given the fact that the word is absorbed so by other languages which are influenced by pali. This is just a calculated guess. However, the word visesa also has secondary meanings. Sometimes in translations like these, you need to make a sensible judgment as to what one word could mean in a particular context. There is not much use in copying and pasting a set of words and making it bold to make a point which is irrational and does not complement the rest of the dhamma.

Visesa does not mean noble. It means special or apart(positive value) or an you say eminent. In Sinhala as well as Telugu if I am not wrong.

And dudette there are no forum rules for bold typing. But I wish there was one for being impertinent.

/Victor

Deshy
04 May 12, 14:36
I think that you are overcomplicating things and seeing things that are not there.

Imo, seeing this suttas has anything to do with after-death is "seeing things that are not there".

Mahanama asked the Buddha a question a typical puthujjana would ask. Namely, "what will happen when I die or what will happen after my death"? The Buddha did not answer his question by saying "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your rebirth will not be a bad one". He merely said "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one".


apapakam te maranam bhavissati, apapika kalakiriya

maranam means death. kalakriya means death. As I see it, he was merely speaking of the experience of death; not after-death.

Edit: I think what Element initially said was correct. It is important to keep in mind the context of this whole discussion and who the Buddha was addressing. The Buddha's focus was consoling a worried lay disciple who was seemingly not a stream enterer, possibly old and apparently believed in rebirth. It seems that the Buddha's words were carefully chosen to address Mahanama's specific fears and worries rather than to teach him.

Deshy
04 May 12, 14:47
If the answer is that a well trained mind rises and seperates out that would probably imply that reincarnation in a better place is meant. But if the mind after death becomes lofty and noble there is no rationality to that notion. Why would a mind change state just because of physical death?

A better question is, how does mind exist without a physical body? Please explain what mind (citta) is as you understand it.

Deshy
04 May 12, 17:03
Visesa does not mean noble. It means special or apart(positive value) or an you say eminent. In Sinhala as well as Telugu if I am not wrong.



Well.... while ariya could be a closer translation to "noble", visesa also means distinguished. A distinguished person in society could be termed as an ariya puggala - a noble one so I don't think the translation is completely misapplied. However, I do agree that eminent is a better translation while apart is not. Visesa does not mean distinction; it is "a mark of distinction" meaning speciality or a distinguishing quality.



I wish there was one for being impertinent.



Irrelevant. You can raise your concerns regarding forum rules to the admins.

Deshy
04 May 12, 17:17
I do not really give a hoot when the Theravadians think that rebirth occurs.

Try adding this part at the beginning:

Victorious: "For someone who once proclaimed rebirth fanaticism in a public forum, I do not really give a hoot when the Theravadians think that rebirth occurs"

That's better. :mrgreen:

Element
04 May 12, 19:41
What he is afraid of is the age old dilemma for people beliving in reincarnation. Mahanama is worried that if he dies at a moment when his minds is muddled he will fall into a bad reincarnation.
Sure. Possibly. But, consistant with my view, Buddha has answered Mahanama according to his disposition. In other words, Buddha can speak with language and with metaphor that means one thing to the listener and other thing to the Buddha.


If the answer is that a well trained mind rises and seperates out that would probably imply that reincarnation in a better place is meant. But if the mind after death becomes lofty and noble there is no rationality to that notion.
Of course the notion of lofty & noble has rationality. But your view of reincarnation has no rationality in Buddhism. Your view is Hinduism.

Buddha taught about "rebirth", that is, "taking birth (jati) again". When a mind is noble, such a stream-enterer, one-returner or non-returner, the superstitious interpretation of the death of these noble minds is they are "reborn" in heaven or a pure abode. In the suttas, when noble minds die, they take birth in a heavenly realm rather than are reborn in a human or other "earthly" realms. In other words, these noble minds are not "reborn" into a physical body but instead in heaven (according to superstition). Thus, Hindu reincarnation has no relevance because Hindu reincarnation is the mind entering another physical body. In Tibetan Lamaism, Hiindu reincarnation has relevence because this religion is based on Lamas being reincarnated again on this earth rather than Hinayanistically being reborn in heaven where they cannot help sentient beings.

To end, the essence of Dhamma is not found in obscure little suttas tucked away in the suttas given to puthujjana.

Kind regards ;D

Element
04 May 12, 20:36
Mahanama asked the Buddha a question a typical puthujjana would ask. Namely, "what will happen when I die or what will happen after my death"? The Buddha did not answer his question by saying "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your rebirth will not be a bad one". He merely said "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one".



maranam means death. kalakriya means death. As I see it, he was merely speaking of the experience of death; not after-death.
Well read. ;D

Victorious
05 May 12, 20:48
Imo, seeing this suttas has anything to do with after-death is "seeing things that are not there".

Mahanama asked the Buddha a question a typical puthujjana would ask. Namely, "what will happen when I die or what will happen after my death"? The Buddha did not answer his question by saying "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your rebirth will not be a bad one". He merely said "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one".


Oh yeah right. That I did not think of that. Then in that case the the solace for mr Bigname is that while being alive and the body is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind becomes lofty and noble?


Yes I can see that that makes a lot of sense. A noble diciples mind becomes noble when these animals are ripping him apart? But not when he is shot or tortured by humans or run over by a car? Very logical. Surley.




maranam means death. kalakriya means death.


Kalakriya means ending! Not death. As in ending of lifetime or Demise.

/Victor

Victorious
05 May 12, 20:51
A better question is, how does mind exist without a physical body? Please explain what mind (citta) is as you understand it.

Please try to stay focused on the topic Deshy.

/Victor

Victorious
05 May 12, 20:56
Try adding this part at the beginning:
Victorious: "For someone who once proclaimed rebirth fanaticism in a public forum, I do not really give a hoot when the Theravadians think that rebirth occurs"That's better. :mrgreen:


What on earth are you talking about. I would NEVER say that. You have me confused with my evil, reincarnation believing, Twin brother.

Yeah that is the way it is!
Besides you can not prove anything!

:P
/Victor

Victorious
05 May 12, 21:03
Sure. Possibly. But, consistant with my view, Buddha has answered Mahanama according to his disposition. In other words, Buddha can speak with language and with metaphor that means one thing to the listener and other thing to the Buddha.


That sounds an awful lot like you are saying that the Buddha is lying to Mahanama or fooling him. Is that what you are saying?



Of course the notion of lofty & noble has rationality. But your view of reincarnation has no rationality in Buddhism. Your view is Hinduism.

Buddha taught about "rebirth", that is, "taking birth (jati) again".



There are numerous places in the suttas discounting the places using jati where the Buddha talks about reincarnation. That is a non debatable fact.
Would you like references?

/Victor

Victorious
05 May 12, 21:10
@Element and @Deshy.

You talk about considering context and then both of you cherry pick single words or small phrases out of a long sutta and give them a different interpretation and want to imply that thus is the meaning of the whole sutta changed.


Why do you not publish the entire sutta here on the thread including your changes so that those reading it can better judge if your changes makes sense or no?

Element asked the forum for an opinion. My opinon is that this sutta does not imply what Element would like it to imply. There are other suttas that transmit the meaning Element want to ascribe to this one.

That is my humble opinon.

I am waiting eagerly for your translation/interpretation of the entire Mahanama Sutta.

Thanks

Victor

Victorious
05 May 12, 21:19
When a mind is noble, such a stream-enterer, one-returner or non-returner, the superstitious interpretation of the death of these noble minds is they are "reborn" in heaven or a pure abode. In the suttas, when noble minds die, they take birth in a heavenly realm rather than are reborn in a human or other "earthly" realms. In other words, these noble minds are not "reborn" into a physical body but instead in heaven (according to superstition). Thus, Hindu reincarnation has no relevance because Hindu reincarnation is the mind entering another physical body. In Tibetan Lamaism, Hiindu reincarnation has relevence because this religion is based on Lamas being reincarnated again on this earth rather than Hinayanistically being reborn in heaven where they cannot help sentient beings.

To end, the essence of Dhamma is not found in obscure little suttas tucked away in the suttas given to puthujjana.

Kind regards ;D

I do not know and I do not believe in Hindu reincarnation. I am pretty convinced that there is reincarnation though.
Btw I think you were right about Mn 117. It should read Other Worlds not Next World. It was you who told me that was it not?

Kind regards
/Victor

Deshy
06 May 12, 15:31
Oh yeah right. That I did not think of that. Then in that case the the solace for mr Bigname is that while being alive and the body is eaten by crows, vultures, hawks, dogs, hyenas, or all sorts of creatures, nevertheless the mind becomes lofty and noble?

Yes I can see that that makes a lot of sense. A noble diciples mind becomes noble when these animals are ripping him apart? But not when he is shot or tortured by humans or run over by a car? Very logical. Surley.

Kalakriya means ending! Not death. As in ending of lifetime or Demise.


As I said, you need to take into account the context of this sutta rather than taking all that is said literally. The Buddha did not lie to Mahanama nor did he talk to Mahanama about life after death or rebirth. He was merely talking about death and the experience of death.

Kalakriya means the fulfilment of one's time. ie death. As you enthusiastically pointed out "ending of lifetime" is death whether there is rebirth or not.

The Buddha merely pointed out to the worried Mahanama the demise of the physical body and the benefit of having cultivated wholesome mental qualities to be experienced during death. Bare in mind that this is a compassionate attempt by the Buddha to set the mind of a patujjana lay follower at ease. Naturally he had to address Mahanama's specific fears about death and rebith (a trivial worldly pursuit of a patujjana) but he also carefully chose his worlds when he said "Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one, your demise will not be bad".

Deshy
06 May 12, 15:34
Please try to stay focused on the topic Deshy.


This question is perfectly relevant to the topic in discussion. You seem to think the sutta translation of "uddhagāmi hoti visesagāmi" means "rises upward and separates out". So I am asking you now, are you saying the mind rises up and separates from the physical body after death? (should be from somewhere near the top of the head since it apparently goes up).

You say you believe in reincarnation. Please explain what reincarnates? The mind?

Deshy
06 May 12, 16:27
Why do you not publish the entire sutta here on the thread including your changes so that those reading it can better judge if your changes makes sense or no?



First of all, this isn't a long sutta. It is in the Samyutta nikaya. However, translating an entire sutta isn't an easy task with my limited knowledge on pali. Having said that, there are some phases in this sutta which I like to get clarified so I am willing to give it a try. But I cannot give you a definite time as to when I can finish. I hope you will have better luck with Element.

Victorious
06 May 12, 18:52
This question is perfectly relevant to the topic in discussion. You seem to think the sutta translation of "uddhagāmi hoti visesagāmi" means "rises upward and separates out". So I am asking you now, are you saying the mind rises up and separates from the physical body after death? (should be from somewhere near the top of the head since it apparently goes up).


How should I know? I did not write the sutta.



You say you believe in reincarnation. Please explain what reincarnates? The mind?

Hmm now that is totally off topic. We are discussing Elements Sutta translation and not my evil twin brothers reincarnation belief!

:mrgreen:

/Victor

Victorious
06 May 12, 18:55
First of all, this isn't a long sutta. It is in the Samyutta nikaya. However, translating an entire sutta isn't an easy task with my limited knowledge on pali. Having said that, there are some phases in this sutta which I like to get clarified so I am willing to give it a try. But I cannot give you a definite time as to when I can finish. I hope you will have better luck with Element.

Yes I will say the same. I will to try to translate it too as an excersise to learn Pali!


/Victor

Deshy
07 May 12, 03:52
How should I know? I did not write the sutta.


Irrespective of who wrote the pali, you have stated your opinion about the translation. You have argued that the correct translation is "it rises up and separates out" as opposed to alternate translations given here. So are you saying that the mind separates the body after death?


Hmm now that is totally off topic.

I think investigating if the Buddha had stated in other places that the mind separates the body and travels in space is relevant to this discussion as well as when translating the pali as "it rises up and separtes out". Such an investigation gives supporting material to whatever conclusion you come to regarding the translation of this sutta. Dhamma is interconnected. Not sure why you think this is off topic.

Deshy
07 May 12, 03:58
my evil twin brothers reincarnation belief!



Sounds like DID. You keep referring to a brother who is evil and believes in reincarnation.

Element
07 May 12, 04:13
That sounds an awful lot like you are saying that the Buddha is lying to Mahanama or fooling him.

There is no need to reinvent the wheel or go over old ground :zzz:


The Awakened One, best of speakers,
Spoke two kinds of truths:
The conventional and the ultimate.
A third truth does not obtain.

Therein:
The speech wherewith the world converses is true
On account of its being agreed upon by the world.
The speech which describes what is ultimate is also true,
Through characterizing dhammas as they really are.

Therefore, being skilled in common usage,
False speech does not arise in the Teacher,
Who is Lord of the World,
When he speaks according to conventions.

(Mn. i. 95)

Element
07 May 12, 04:32
I am waiting eagerly for your translation/interpretation of the entire Mahanama Sutta.
Don't be overly eager otherwise such eagerness may result in both a lifelong wait & possibly some dukkha from non-fulfilment


There are other suttas that transmit the meaning Element want to ascribe to this one.
A number of suttas have already been quoted where the word visesa has been used.

Thanks

Element
07 May 12, 04:56
There are numerous places in the suttas discounting the places using jati where the Buddha talks about reincarnation. That is a non debatable fact. Would you like references?
sure. please keep in mind, the references are to be from Pali sutta & refer to reincarnation (rather than rebirth). thanks ;D

Victorious
08 May 12, 19:18
Irrespective of who wrote the pali, you have stated your opinion about the translation. You have argued that the correct translation is "it rises up and separates out" as opposed to alternate translations given here. So are you saying that the mind separates the body after death?


I argue that in view of the reincarnation belief in Buddhism it is a understandable interpretation regardless of what I think about reincarnation.



I think investigating if the Buddha had stated in other places that the mind separates the body and travels in space is relevant to this discussion as well as when translating the pali as "it rises up and separtes out". Such an investigation gives supporting material to whatever conclusion you come to regarding the translation of this sutta. Dhamma is interconnected. Not sure why you think this is off topic.

No in this thread we discuss Elements interpretation. I will be happy to discuss any other interpretations in a seperate thread.

Thanks
Victor

Victorious
08 May 12, 19:25
There is no need to reinvent the wheel or go over old ground :zzz:

No please lets!


You said


Sure. Possibly. But, consistant with my view, Buddha has answered Mahanama according to his disposition. In other words, Buddha can speak with language and with metaphor that means one thing to the listener and other thing to the Buddha.



I asked you if you are implying if the Buddha is deceiving Mahanama to which you replied



The Awakened One, best of speakers,
Spoke two kinds of truths:
The conventional and the ultimate.
A third truth does not obtain.

Therein:
The speech wherewith the world converses is true
On account of its being agreed upon by the world.
The speech which describes what is ultimate is also true,
Through characterizing dhammas as they really are.

Therefore, being skilled in common usage,
False speech does not arise in the Teacher,
Who is Lord of the World,
When he speaks according to conventions.

(Mn. i. 95)

So then I must ask you which two thruths do you see in the Mahanama sutta?


/Victor

Victorious
08 May 12, 19:27
Don't be overly eager otherwise such eagerness may result in both a lifelong wait & possibly some dukkha from non-fulfilment


A number of suttas have already been quoted where the word visesa has been used.

Thanks


So you are saying that you can not translate the Mahanama Sutta using your interpretation of those words and get the sutta to mean something rational or understandable?

Ok thats cool. Then we agree.

/Victor

Victorious
08 May 12, 19:31
sure. please keep in mind, the references are to be from Pali sutta & refer to reincarnation (rather than rebirth). thanks ;D
Actually I feel this is another topic and thus belongs in another thread. But since it is your thread and you asked for them I will post it here. Please feel free to move them to another thread or tell me to do so and I will.

Here comes a bunch. I am most interested in what you make of them.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an08/an08.040.than.html
Monks, the taking of life — when indulged in, developed, & pursued — is something that leads to hell, leads to rebirth as a common animal, leads to the realm of the hungry shades. The slightest of all the results coming from the taking of life is that, when one becomes a human being, it leads to a short life span.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.041.nymo.html
If a householder who observes conduct in accordance with the Dhamma, righteous conduct, should wish: 'Oh, that on the dissolution of the body, after death, I might reappear in the company of the gods of the Four Kings!' it is possible that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he may do so. Why is that? Because he observes conduct in accordance with the Dhamma, righteous conduct.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn42/sn42.003.than.html
Apparently, headman, I haven't been able to get past you by saying, 'Enough, headman, put that aside. Don't ask me that.' So I will simply answer you. When a warrior strives & exerts himself in battle, his mind is already seized, debased, & misdirected by the thought: 'May these beings be struck down or slaughtered or annihilated or destroyed. May they not exist.' If others then strike him down & slay him while he is thus striving & exerting himself in battle, then with the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in the hell called the realm of those slain in battle. But if he holds such a view as this: 'When a warrior strives & exerts himself in battle, if others then strike him down & slay him while he is striving & exerting himself in battle, then with the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in the company of devas slain in battle,' that is his wrong view. Now, there are two destinations for a person with wrong view, I tell you: either hell or the animal womb.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn22/sn22.002.than.html
If one who entered & remained in skillful mental qualities were to have a stressful abiding in the here & now — threatened, despairing, & feverish — and on the break-up of the body, after death, could expect a bad destination, then the Blessed One would not advocate entering into skillful mental qualities. But because one who enters & remains in skillful mental qualities has a pleasant abiding in the here & now — unthreatened, undespairing, unfeverish — and on the break-up of the body, after death, can expect a good destination, that is why the Blessed One advocates entering into skillful mental qualities.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.054x.than.html
When the disciple of the noble ones has arrived at this purity of equanimity & mindfulness, he sees — by means of the divine eye, purified & surpassing the human — beings passing away & re-appearing, and he discerns how they are inferior & superior, beautiful & ugly, fortunate & unfortunate in accordance with their kamma: 'These beings — who were endowed with bad conduct of body, speech & mind, who reviled noble ones, held wrong views and undertook actions under the influence of wrong views — with the break-up of the body, after death, have re-appeared in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/dn/dn.16.5-6.than.html
And for what reason is a Tathagata, worthy & rightly self-awakened, worthy of a burial mound? [At the thought,] 'This is the burial mound of a Tathagata, worthy & rightly self-awakened,' many people will brighten their minds. Having brightened their minds there, then — on the break-up of the body, after death — they will reappear in a good destination, the heavenly world. It is for this reason that a Tathagata, worthy & rightly self-awakened, is worthy of a burial mound.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.019.than.html
These beings — who were endowed with bad conduct of body, speech & mind, who reviled the Noble Ones, held wrong views and undertook actions under the influence of wrong views — with the break-up of the body, after death, have re-appeared in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.


Cheers
Victor

Element
08 May 12, 20:17
So you are saying that you can not translate the Mahanama Sutta using ...
it do not know Pali, thus to try to translate the entire sutta is too difficult & not worthwhile

i have focused on the key words and used the Pali dictionary and other uses of those words in other suttas to translate them

Deshy & yourself are Singalese and Deshy confirmed the translation

Element
08 May 12, 20:18
So then I must ask you which two thruths do you see in the Mahanama sutta?
read the entire verse; go past the 1st sentence

The speech wherewith the world converses is true
On account of its being agreed upon by the world.
The speech which describes what is ultimate is also true,
Through characterizing dhammas as they really are.

Therefore, being skilled in common usage,
False speech does not arise in the Teacher

Element
08 May 12, 20:39
....leads to hell, leads to rebirth as a common animal, leads to the realm of the hungry shades. The slightest of all the results coming from the taking of life is that, when one becomes a human being, it leads to a short life span.

on the dissolution of the body, after death, I might reappear in the company of the gods of the Four Kings!' it is possible that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he may do so. Why is that? Because he observes conduct in accordance with the Dhamma, righteous conduct.

he is thus striving & exerting himself in battle, then with the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in the hell called the realm of those slain in battle....either hell or the animal womb.

entered & remained in skillful mental qualities were to have a stressful abiding in the here & now — threatened, despairing, & feverish — and on the break-up of the body, after death, could expect a bad destination

held wrong views and undertook actions under the influence of wrong views — with the break-up of the body, after death, have re-appeared in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.

having brightened their minds there, then — on the break-up of the body, after death — they will reappear in a good destination, the heavenly world.

endowed with bad conduct of body, speech & mind, who reviled the Noble Ones, held wrong views and undertook actions under the influence of wrong views — with the break-up of the body, after death, have re-appeared in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.

thanks, Victor

these are stock phrases from the suttas. they are all about karma & results. they are all about when the kaya (body; group; collection) of aggregates which comprise of a certain action end; and the results that result from when that action ends

none of these excerpts explain reincarnation. reincarnation means when the physical body ends, the mind, soul, whatever, leaves that physical body and then enters into a new physical body

to reiterate, these excerpts quoted each explain karma & results; that is all

for those intepreting these excerpts, such as yourself, based on ordinary common worldly language, one interpretation or 'truth' occurs

for others interpreting these excerpts, based in the ultimate (characterizing dhammas as they really are), another intrepretation or 'truth' arises

both interpretations are true, according the interpretation of the reader

thus false speech does not arise in the teacher

in other words, the Buddha cannot be criticised, censured & rebuked by the wise here, because the Buddha did not teach that consciousness, the soul, whatever, leaves one body & enters into another body

if the Buddha actually taught like this then i personally would certainly criticise, rebuke & censure him. but fortunately, i cannot

the video below shows a monk being criticised, censured & rebuked by a man of reason (and expectedly so)

but the words of Buddha cannot be criticised, censured & rebuked by the wise because, in these excerpts, Buddha simply taught karma & its results

kind regards

;D

Victorious
08 May 12, 21:06
it do not know Pali, thus to try to translate the entire sutta is too difficult & not worthwhile

i have focused on the key words and used the Pali dictionary and other uses of those words in other suttas to translate them

Deshy & yourself are Singalese and Deshy confirmed the translation


Oh I see. That is alright. I am sorry if I have imposed on you something.

It is just that you are pretty well versed in the gathas and I feel some of your translation are pretty brilliant! The one about the gandhabba for an example. :).

I have the same problem but more so than you I think. My lates project is to learn Pali. It is not going so well right now but I will get there.

/Victor

Element
08 May 12, 21:18
thanks Victor

i translate the hard way, which does not always bring a result, using:

1. for the Pali: http://www.tipitaka.org/romn/

2. for the translation: http://dsal.uchicago.edu/dictionaries/pali/index.html

regards ;D

Victorious
08 May 12, 21:40
thanks, Victor

these are stock phrases from the suttas. they are all about karma & results. they are all about when the kaya (body; group; collection) of aggregates which comprise of a certain action end; and the results that result from when that action ends

none of these excerpts explain reincarnation. reincarnation means when the physical body ends, the mind, soul, whatever, leaves that physical body and then enters into a new physical body

to reiterate, these excerpts quoted each explain karma & results; that is all

for those intepreting these excerpts, such as yourself, based on ordinary common worldly language, one interpretation or 'truth' occurs

for others interpreting these excerpts, based in the ultimate (characterizing dhammas as they really are), another intrepretation or 'truth' arises

both interpretations are true, according the interpretation of the reader

thus false speech does not arise in the teacher

in other words, the Buddha cannot be criticised, censured & rebuked by the wise here, because the Buddha did not teach that consciousness, the soul, whatever, leaves one body & enters into another body

if the Buddha actually taught like this then i personally would certainly criticise, rebuke & censure him. but fortunately, i cannot

the video below shows a monk being criticised, censured & rebuked by a man of reason (and expectedly so)

but the words of Buddha cannot be criticised, censured & rebuked by the wise because, in these excerpts, Buddha simply taught karma & its results

kind regards

;D



I think I understand what you mean and your standpoint. Not that I agree but I understand it.

You are saying that the words of the Buddha have two different meanings in the interpretation of two different individuals. I am saying that the word in the mouth of the Buddha have two different meanings which both are true.

There is just as those suttas entail reincarnation after the breakup of the body and it is not in contradiction to the rebirth of the ego from moment to moment. Both truths coexist. Both are true. That is not Brahmanistic reincarnation. Where the soul has an objective, standalone value which in Buddhism it does not have. Anatta.

If you favor one interpretation over the other Buddhism is diminished.

I think that understanding Anatta as mearly "no soul" or "no self" is insufficient. (and actually wrong)


/Victor

Victorious
08 May 12, 21:50
thanks Victor

i translate the hard way, which does not always bring a result, using:

1. for the Pali: http://www.tipitaka.org/romn/

2. for the translation: http://dsal.uchicago.edu/dictionaries/pali/index.html

regards ;D

Thanks a bunch but I already got those from the thread in newbuddhist a long long time ago! ;)

And I also noticed that Access to insight have direct reference to the pali text in the header of the sutta. I have not had time to check the quality though so I keep looking at tipitaka.org too.

/Victor

Victorious
08 May 12, 21:57
I think I understand what you mean and your standpoint. Not that I agree but I understand it.

You are saying that the words of the Buddha have two different meanings in the interpretation of two different individuals. I am saying that the word in the mouth of the Buddha have two different meanings which both are true.

There is just as those suttas entail reincarnation after the breakup of the body and it is not in contradiction to the rebirth of the ego from moment to moment. Both truths coexist. Both are true. That is not Brahmanistic reincarnation. Where the soul has an objective, standalone value which in Buddhism it does not have. Anatta.

If you favor one interpretation over the other Buddhism is diminished.

I think that understanding Anatta as mearly "no soul" or "no self" is insufficient. (and actually wrong)


/Victor


Lets just say I think I understand and I think I do not agree. This is worth some bhavana time.

/Victor

Victorious
09 May 12, 05:03
read the entire verse; go past the 1st sentence

The speech wherewith the world converses is true
On account of its being agreed upon by the world.
The speech which describes what is ultimate is also true,
Through characterizing dhammas as they really are.

Therefore, being skilled in common usage,
False speech does not arise in the Teacher

Sorry did not get that. Might be I am too stupid. My question was.


So then I must ask you which two thruths do you see in the Mahanama sutta?



/Victor

Deshy
09 May 12, 14:40
I argue that in view of the reincarnation belief in Buddhism it is a understandable interpretation regardless of what I think about reincarnation.

Regardless of what you think about reincarnation or how convinced you are of reincarnation, it is highly unlikely that you will find evidence in the sutta pitaka to prove your beliefs. You seem reluctant to explain what it is that you think reincarnates. The mind? What is citta? You keep pointing out that "it is out of topic" while copying and pasting sutta quotes which you think prove that reincarnation is true. So which is it? Is it on topic or out of topic or you simply cannot explain your own beliefs?

According to my understanding, the Buddha has spoken of citta being liberated from upadana not from the physical body. I haven't so far seen any place where the Buddha talks about citta independently existing without a body. Citta exists based on the physical body just like vinnana.

Deshy
09 May 12, 14:55
Sorry did not get that.

I think what it means is that, sometimes, the Buddha's words can be interpreted by deluded pathujjanas who relentlessly pursue mundane dhamma in such a way that their beliefs are justified. What the Buddha says seems true according to the beliefs and interpretation of the deluded pathujjana. At the same time, what the Buddha says does not contradict what is ultimate either.

For example, the Buddha spoke to Mahanama in such a way that Mahanama felt revealed of the fears he had of death and after-death. The Buddha did not bother to teach higher dhamma to a worried old man whose mind was clouded by fear. Rather, he used language in such a way that a certain interpretation can be derived by Mahanama if he so wishes. The Buddha consoled the pathujjana without having to lie to him by saying "Don't worry Mahanama. After your death, you will be reincarnated in a beautiful place".

Victorious
09 May 12, 16:41
Regardless of what you think about reincarnation or how convinced you are of reincarnation, it is highly unlikely that you will find evidence in the sutta pitaka to prove your beliefs. You seem reluctant to explain what it is that you think reincarnates. The mind? What is citta? You keep pointing out that "it is out of topic" while copying and pasting sutta quotes which you think prove that reincarnation is true. So which is it? Is it on topic or out of topic or you simply cannot explain your own beliefs?



Start a new thread and I will join and answer your question. I promise lill sis!



Citta exists based on the physical body just like vinnana.

I would really love a reference... but I think it would be best in another thread.

Best wishes
/Victor

Victorious
09 May 12, 16:45
I think what it means is that, sometimes, the Buddha's words can be interpreted by deluded pathujjanas who relentlessly pursue mundane dhamma in such a way that their beliefs are justified. What the Buddha says seems true according to the beliefs and interpretation of the deluded pathujjana. At the same time, what the Buddha says does not contradict what is ultimate either.

For example, the Buddha spoke to Mahanama in such a way that Mahanama felt revealed of the fears he had of death and after-death. The Buddha did not bother to teach higher dhamma to a worried old man whose mind was clouded by fear. Rather, he used language in such a way that a certain interpretation can be derived by Mahanama if he so wishes. The Buddha consoled the pathujjana without having to lie to him by saying "Don't worry Mahanama. After your death, you will be reincarnated in a beautiful place".

I think you should really investigate the meaning of the word Lie. Because I think you got it a bit muddled.


As long as you hold this view of that word there is no convincing you how wrong you are. Sorry.

/Victor

Deshy
09 May 12, 17:28
I think you should really investigate the meaning of the word Lie. Because I think you got it a bit muddled.



Ok let see,


lie: To utter falsehood with an intention to deceive

Nope, there are no lies.

Deshy
09 May 12, 17:37
Start a new thread and I will join and answer your question. I promise lill sis!

:papanca:




I would really love a reference... but I think it would be best in another thread.



No it is best in this thread since we are discussing it in this thread and vastly relevant to the topic. What I said was, everywhere I have seen citta mentioned in the sutta pitaka, I have seen them mentioned with reference to a living breathing person. Not as an independent entity existing on its own. One example is the Pabhassara Sutta where the Buddha explains the luminous mind liberated from defilement.

Edit: Same applies to vinnana. ex: Upaya Sutta

Victorious
25 Aug 12, 06:58
The best translation I can think of is "stays pure" or "stays lofty" in support of Elements translation.

I mean when you throw a bottle of gee into the water it floats. And when it breaks the shards sink but the gee stays afloat. It does not need to rise because it is already at the surface.

In the same way a mind endowed with the mentioned qualities does not need to become something other than it already is. It is already pure and noble.

But I can still not make it fit with the being torn to bits part....


Cheers
Victor

chaminda1
28 Aug 12, 18:45
Mind is also not a permanent entity. It is a delusion.

Element
28 Aug 12, 23:43
Mind can be affected by delusion and can be freed from delusion. But mind itself is not delusion. To believe mind is delusion is itself delusion. Mind is neither a permanent entity or an impermanent entity because mind is not an 'entity'. Mind is an element of nature. Buddha explained:


"Luminous, monks, is the mind. And it is defiled by incoming defilements."

"Luminous, monks, is the mind. And it is freed from incoming defilements."

AN 1.49-52


The mind is burning, ideas are burning, mind-consciousness is burning, mind-contact is burning, also whatever is felt as pleasant or painful or neither-painful-nor-pleasant that arises with mind-contact for its indispensable condition, that too is burning. Burning with what? Burning with the fire of lust, with the fire of hate, with the fire of delusion.

The Fire Sermon


There are, Ananda, these six elements: the earth element, the water element, the fire element, the air element, the space element, and the consciousness element. When he knows and sees these six elements, a monk can be called skilled in the elements.

MN 115


There are, Ananda, these eighteen elements: the eye element, the form element, the eye-consciousness element; the ear element, the sound element, the ear-consciousness element; the nose element, the odor element, the nose-consciousness element; the tongue element, the flavor element, the tongue-consciousness element; the body element, the tangible element, the body-consciousness element; the mind element, the mind-object element, the mind-consciousness element. When he knows and sees these eighteen elements, a monk can be called skilled in the elements.

MN 115