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Thread: Bhikkhu Analayo debunking the Mahācattārīsaka-sutta

  1. #11
    Forums Member Element's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scholar
    2) 'anāsavacitta' also a peculiar term not found anywhere else. That term could not refer to anything else than somebody whose mind is without impurities, ie. an arahant (as stated at the end of MN 2). So that would mean that right view becomes a 'factor of the path' only when one is already an arahant. Again this is sheer nonsense.
    Not so. When the path is engaged, the asava are dormant & being reduced by samatha/vipassana (but not uprooted). The Dipa Sutta says:

    So if a monk should wish: 'May neither my body be fatigued nor my eyes, and may my mind, through lack of clinging/sustenance, be released from fermentations,' then he should attend carefully to this same concentration through mindfulness of in-&-out breathing.

    SN 54.8
    ****

    Quote Originally Posted by Scholar
    One tries to abandon wrong view & to enter into right view: This is one's right effort. One is mindful to abandon wrong view & to enter & remain in right view: This is one's right mindfulness. Thus these three qualities — right view, right effort, & right mindfulness — run & circle around right view.
    This seems to be a genuine piece of teaching, and it is not found in any other text, so that seems to be also part of the authentic specific teaching that makes the interest of this sutta.
    Yes, indeed. Well spoken. This teaching is so genuine & so beneficial. Here, mindfulness is explained in its reality, far better than any other place in the Nikayas. This demonstrates the author of the Mahācattārīsaka Sutta had actual path fruition.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scholar
    And what is right resolve? Right resolve, I tell you, is of two sorts: There is right resolve with effluents, siding with merit, resulting in the acquisitions [of becoming]; and there is noble right resolve, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path. And what is the right resolve that has effluents, sides with merit, & results in acquisitions? Being resolved on renunciation, on freedom from ill will, on harmlessness. This is the right resolve that has effluents, sides with merit, & results in acquisitions.
    Here, the same thing as above happens. Sammāsaṅkappa is again divided in what 'results in attachment to rebirth' and what is 'noble', according to the pattern found at Net 33, dividing the teachings of the Buddha into two categories. But now, it goes still further into the nonsense: what is this time clearly defined elsewhere as a factor of the path (eg. at SN 45.8) and which therefore - besides of course leading to Nibbāna - according to AN 10.139, is 'anāsava', is now on the contrary said to be also 'sāsava' and to result in attachment to rebirth ('upadhivepakkha'). Here we are again lost in sheer nonsense.
    It is not non-sense at all & a fitting place to end the critique of these pernicious wrong views.

    As was pointed out earlier, the three standard right intentions cannot fulfil the path. There are three kinds of craving that must be abandoned to fulfil the path, namely, craving for sensuality, craving-to-be & craving-not-to-be. This goes beyond the three standard right intentions of renunciating sensuality, ill-will & harming. The Mahācattārīsaka Sutta includes the intention required for the established of samadhi. If the mind is not established in the intention to abandon all craving (vosagga), it cannot develop the Noble Path. If the mind is not established in the intention to abandon the conceit "I", it cannot develop the Noble Path.


    To end, what is the most dangerous, ignorant & complete non-sense is labelling of MN 117 as 'counterfeit'. Lord Buddha exhorted in many places, such wrong views will lead to harm & suffering for a long time.


  2. #12
    Forums Member daverupa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Element View Post
    ...I am confident the statement: "Mahācattārīsaka-sutta is the only canonical instance in the four Nikāyas that presents a supramundane version of the path-factors" is inaccurate.
    It is accurate insofar as it's the only time the Path is described as supramundane. Prior to the addition of the mundane path and e.g. MN 60, there was only the Path and it was not described using terms from this later dichotomy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Element View Post
    My view is what is written above is a misunderstanding, in respect to the noble path.

    The Nikayas unambiguously state only the realisation of impermanence, unsatisfactoriness & not-self, resulting in the elimination of craving, attachment and self-views, leads to the eradication of dukkha.

    The four path factors quoted above in themselves are incapable of leading to the eradication of dukkha.
    This is a misreading of the quote. They are part of the standard definition of the eightfold Path, not in and of themselves sufficient as the Path.

    A minor misreading happens again when calling the 'mundane' factors Path factors is criticized. While Analayo isn't challenging the 'mundane' aspect the way we are, he is challenging those descriptors, which are indeed Abhidhammic terms.

    ---

    It's true that 'supramundane' Path factors are the only Path factors the Buddha taught, but it's false to say he taught them as 'supramundane'. He taught them as Path factors; this later attempt to shoehorn in merits and heavens is no reason to consider 'supramundane' a correct additional term for the ennobling eightfold Path. It's out of time, and out of place.

    The point of the Sutta doesn't even originally seem to have been an explication of Path factors, but only an explanation of how other Path factors interrelate to support sammasamadhi. That this became engorged with later textual blocs and shoved into the Majjhima while remaining open to edits even after Asoka sent his missions out does not support the use of its Abhidhamma, nor the use of it's blindly added pericopes about mundane matters.
    Last edited by daverupa; 01 Aug 14 at 13:46.

  3. #13
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Oh, look -- after three years, daverupa strikes up a Debate with Marx's Ghost. How droll.


    Quote Originally Posted by daverupa View Post
    It is accurate insofar as it's the only time the Path is described as supramundane.
    There is much in the Suttas that the Buddha describes as lokuttara, ALL of which falls under his descriptions of the Noble Path Factors in MN117. This alone destroys your and Analayo's claims.

    Prior to the addition of the mundane path blah blah blah.....
    That's so wrong it's Not Even Wrong. You and Analayo have no basis at all for claiming that MN 17 is a "counterfeit". It comports both with the Dhamma and with reality. What the Buddha describes in MN117 is the various superstitions that preceded his own liberative teachings. These aren't The Noble Eightfold Path, these are half-measures that do not eliminate dukkha.


    This is a misreading of the quote.
    Not at all.

    They are part of the standard definition of the eightfold Path, not in and of themselves sufficient as the Path.
    Your claim and Analayo's ignores the CONTENT of what the Buddha' describes as sammahitthi sasava: the various superstitious that preceded his own liberative teachings. He points out here and in many other suttas that these superstitions do lead one toward ethical behavior, but do not reach the goals of his own teachings. It is precisely with this misunderstanding that you and Analayo fail.


    A minor misreading happens again when calling the 'mundane' factors Path factors is criticized. While Analayo isn't challenging the 'mundane' aspect the way we are, he is challenging those descriptors, which are indeed Abhidhammic terms.
    The "abhidhamma" didn't exist when the Buddha gave this discourse. The fact that the Buddha didn't often make this distinction between his own teachings and other teachings that he found to be morally useful for lay folks -- which you and Analayo are basing your entire house of cards upon -- doesn't mean he didn't say it. This distinction comports completely with the Dhamma as he taught it, and with his Modus Operandi of not challenging the beliefs of others which he saw as leading to moral behavior, even though they did not lead to the goals of his own teachngs.


    ---

    It's true that 'supramundane' Path factors are the only Path factors the Buddha taught, but it's false to say he taught them as 'supramundane'.
    He did in MN 117. Black Swan Fallacy. Your argument is completely circular.

    AND -- and what you and Analayo fail to grasp as well, and which totally destroys your preposterous claims: "lokuttara" doesn't even mean "supramundane".


    He taught them as Path factors; this later attempt to shoehorn in merits and heavens is no reason to consider 'supramundane' a correct additional term for the ennobling eightfold Path. It's out of time, and out of place.
    There WAS no "later attempt". Circular Reasoning is Circular. You are arguing from your own false conclusion.


    He distinguished his own teachings as superior to others in many ways throughout the Suttas, for example, when he called his own teachings "the Dhamma that is good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end", or when he said such things as "Monks, the ending of the effluents is for one who knows and sees, not for one who does not know and does not see. Seeing what? ...." -- and of course, in every case a lesson what is described in MN117 as "sammaditthi arioy anasava..." ensues. So no, you and Analayo have not a leg to stand on with your preposterous claims that he only makes this distinction in one or two suttas and thus it is somehow counterfeit.


    The point of the Sutta doesn't even originally seem to have been an explication of Path factors, but only an explanation of how other Path factors interrelate to support sammasamadhi.
    Funny how you see THAT much of the context, but fail to see the rest. You completely ignore the discussion of WRONG VIEW and its role in the context of the Buddha's teaching here.


    That this became engorged with later textual blocs and shoved into the Majjhima while remaining open to edits even after Asoka sent his missions out does not support the use of its Abhidhamma, nor the use of it's blindly added pericopes about mundane matters.
    Neither you nor Analayo or your other anonymous blogger source has shown this claim to be true. You are arguing from wishful thinking.


    AGAIN, and this is VERY important that you and Analayo have overlooked: LOKIYO AND LOKUTTARA DO NOT MEAN "MUNDANE" AND "SUPRAMUNDANE". Your entire line of "reasoning" crumbles to the ground on this point.

    What you and Analayo also fail to grasp is that the Buddha NEVER describes sammaditti sasava or any of its elements as a "PATH", or as "factors of a/the Path".

    Neither does he describe any of the wrong views as a path.

    THE ONLY REFERENCE THE BUDDHA MAKES TO "PATH" ARE CONTAINED IN HIS DESCRIPTIONS OF HIS OWN, ARIYO LOKUTTARA, TEACHINGS. HE DOES NOT DESCRIBE WRONG-VIEW ELEMENTS OR RIGHT-VIEW-WITH-EFFLUENTS ELEMENTS AS BELONGING TO THE PATH.
    Last edited by stuka; 02 Aug 14 at 17:04.

  4. #14
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    "And what is right view? Right view, I tell you, is of two sorts: There is right view with effluents, siding with merit, resulting in acquisitions [of becoming]; there is right view that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.


    ...

    "And what is the right view that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path? The discernment, the faculty of discernment, the strength of discernment, analysis of qualities as a factor for awakening, the path factor of right view[1] in one developing the noble path whose mind is noble, whose mind is without effluents, who is fully possessed of the noble path. This is the right view that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    ... there is right resolve that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    "And what is the right resolve that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path? The thinking, directed thinking, resolve, mental fixity, mental transfixion, focused awareness, & verbal fabrications in one developing the noble path whose mind is noble, whose mind is without effluents, who is fully possessed of the noble path. This is the right resolve that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path."

    ....

    ...there is right speech that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    "And what is the right speech that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path? The abstaining, desisting, abstinence, avoidance of the four forms of verbal misconduct in one developing the noble path whose mind is noble, whose mind is without effluents, who is fully possessed of the noble path. This is the right speech that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.






    ...and so on for all the Noble Path Factors of the Buddha's teachings. There is not a single instance here of the word "path" appearing in either the wrong-view elements or the "sammaditthi sasava" elements. Not one. There IS no "lokiyo sasava PATH".
    Last edited by stuka; 02 Aug 14 at 17:51.

  5. #15
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daverupa View Post
    It is accurate insofar as it's the only time the Path is described as supramundane.

    He does NOT describe the Path as "lokuttara" here. He describes Noble Path factors as "lokuttara" (here "transcendent" in Thanissaro's translation):


    .... there is right view that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    ...there is right resolve that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    ...there is right speech that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    ...there is right action that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.

    ...

    ...there is right livelihood that is noble, without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.



    And AGAIN: "lokuttara" does NOT MEAN "supramundane".


    Prior to the addition of the mundane path and e.g. MN 60, there was only the Path and it was not described using terms from this later dichotomy.

    There IS NO mention of a dhammic "path", "mundane or otherwise, in MN60. THe only mention of a "path" at all in MN60 is as follows: "'Household life is confining, a dusty path."

    Your (and Analayo's) "mundane/supramundane path" argument is a complete strawman.


    It's true that 'supramundane' Path factors are the only Path factors the Buddha taught, but it's false to say he taught them as 'supramundane'. He taught them as Path factors; this later attempt to shoehorn in merits and heavens is no reason to consider 'supramundane' a correct additional term for the ennobling eightfold Path. It's out of time, and out of place.
    He taught these path factors as "lokuttara", not "supramundane. You are correct that he did not teach them as "supramundane", but you are wrong as to why.


    The point of the Sutta doesn't even originally seem to have been an explication of Path factors, but only an explanation of how other Path factors interrelate to support sammasamadhi blah blah blah...

    And you fail to grasp that the Buddha equated "noble release" with sammasamadhi. See footnote 4 in Thanissaro's translation, which references SN 48.10.
    Last edited by stuka; 02 Aug 14 at 19:25.

  6. #16
    Forums Member Sea Turtle's Avatar
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    Again, I ask, why must unwholesome speech be used in a discussion on Buddhism?

    Are insulting, combative, and highly passionate words in keeping with the tenants of the practice?


  7. #17
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sea Turtle View Post
    Again, I ask, why must unwholesome speech be used in a discussion on Buddhism?
    Precisely what are you calling "unwholesome speech" here?


    Are insulting, combative, and highly passionate words in keeping with the tenants of the practice?
    What's insulting? What's combative? What's passionate?

    Is this statement from the Buddha's own lips to Sati, who misrepresented the Buddha's teachings,in MN38, "unwholesome, insulting, combative, passionate"?:

    "And to whom, foolish man, do you understand me to have taught the Dhamma like that? Haven't I, in many ways, said of dependently co-arisen consciousness, 'Apart from a requisite condition, there is no coming-into-play of consciousness'? [2] But you, through your own poor grasp, not only slander us but also dig yourself up [by the root] and produce much demerit for yourself. That will lead to your long-term harm & suffering."

  8. #18
    Forums Member Sea Turtle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stuka View Post
    What's insulting?
    Quote Originally Posted by stuka View Post
    Oh, look -- after three years, daverupa strikes up a Debate with Marx's Ghost. How droll.

    Quote Originally Posted by stuka View Post
    What's combative?
    Telling another person to take the cotton out of their ears and stick it in their mouth.

    Quote Originally Posted by stuka View Post
    What's passionate?
    Typing in all CAPS, as one example.

    Quote Originally Posted by stuka View Post
    Is this statement from the Buddha's own lips to Sati, who misrepresented the Buddha's teachings,in MN38, "unwholesome, insulting, combative, passionate"?
    Absolutely not. You are quite right about that. The Lord Buddha's tone and delivery here are stern, yet completely free from passion and conceit. It's easy to sense the compassion in his reply.

    Wishing you well.

  9. #19
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sea Turtle View Post
    Oh, look -- after three years, daverupa strikes up a Debate with Marx's Ghost. How droll.

    You have a strange definition of "insulting".


    Telling another person to take the cotton out of their ears and stick it in their mouth.
    That's simply another way of saying what has already been said: That LazyEye isn't listening to what is being told him.



    Typing in all CAPS, as one example.
    That's simply for emphasis. So the point is not ignored.

    Absolutely not. You are quite right about that. The Lord Buddha's tone and delivery here are stern, yet completely free from passion and conceit. It's easy to sense the compassion in his reply.
    Really. "Completely free from passion", huh? Sounds like something out of Candide. There is no "compassion" in the Buddha's treatment of Sati there.



    "and conceit".
    Nobody said anything about "conceit".

  10. #20
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