Thread: Right view affected by the taints

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    Forums Member mjaviem's Avatar
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    Right view affected by the taints

    MN 117 B. Bodhi
    ... “And what, bhikkhus, is right view that is affected by the taints, partaking of merit, ripening in the acquisitions? ‘There is what is given and what is offered and what is sacrificed; there is fruit and result of good and bad actions; there is this world and the other world; there is mother and father; there are beings who are reborn spontaneously; there are in the world good and virtuous recluses and brahmins who have realised for themselves by direct knowledge and declare this world and the other world.’ This is right view affected by taints, partaking of merit, ripening in the acquisitions...
    Well, I think Right view is in summary the Four Noble Truths:
    • suffering
    • the origination of suffering
    • that ending suffering is possible
    • the way leading to the cessation of suffering

    So it must be talking about these truths.

    Here it goes my (weird?) interpretation of what "Right view affected by the taints" could mean:

    ...
    “And what, bhikkhus, is right view that is affected by the taints, partaking of merit, ripening in the acquisitions?
    ...
    Perhaps it means...

    ... ‘There is what is given and what is offered and what is sacrificed;...
    to understand suffering and renunciation: "Given, offered and sacrificed" could mean renunciation

    ... there is fruit and result of good and bad actions; ...
    that speech, actions and livelihood bring consequences,

    ... there is this world and the other world; ...
    that liberation is possible: The "world" is all that is conditioned but there is "another world"...

    ... there is mother and father; there are beings who are reborn spontaneously ...
    that suffering has a clear origin or may have no apparent origin: "Mother and father" here could mean the causes (like craving) and "spontaneously" could mean without apparent cause (like apparently without any cravings).

    ...there are in the world good and virtuous recluses and brahmins who have realised for themselves by direct knowledge and declare this world and the other world.’...
    and that there are those who developed the Noble Eightfold Path and realized Nibbana: The realization could be in regard of the unconditioned.

    About the world...
    SN 35.84 B. Bodhi
    ... At Savatthi. Then the Venerable Ānanda approached the Blessed One … and said to him: “Venerable sir, it is said, ‘the world, the world.’ In what way, venerable sir, is it said ‘the world’?”

    “Whatever is subject to disintegration, Ānanda, is called the world in the Noble One’s Discipline. And what is subject to disintegration? The eye, Ānanda, is subject to disintegration, forms … eye-consciousness … eye-contact … whatever feeling arises with eye-contact as condition … that too is subject to disintegration. The ear is subject to disintegration … The mind is subject to disintegration … Whatever feeling arises with mind-contact as condition … that too is subject to disintegration. Whatever is subject to disintegration, Ānanda, is called the world in the Noble One’s Discipline.”...
    Some of you may argue that this is brahmins language but I don't see mother&father being brahmins language. If it were so it would make no sense talking of no mother and father.

    Some of you could also argue that Nibbana is not "the other world" but "beyond the world". But I ask what then is this other world declared by good and virtuous people that was realized for themselves by direct knowledge. How can this be other than Nibbana?

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    Global Moderator Element's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    Well, I think Right view is in summary the Four Noble Truths:
    • suffering
    • the origination of suffering
    • that ending suffering is possible
    • the way leading to the cessation of suffering

    So it must be talking about these truths.
    The Four Noble Truths includes the supramundane right view about suffering & its cessation. The cessation of suffering is the destruction of the taints & acquisitions. SN 12.66 says suffering ends when acquisition ends.

    Where as the right view affected by the taints, ripening in the acquisitions, is about merit (morality). It does not lead to cessation of suffering but leads to merit (goodness).

    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    to understand suffering and renunciation: "Given, offered and sacrificed" could mean renunciation
    The above appears to mean recognizing or acknowledging you are the recipient of gifts, offerings & sacrifices, such as from your mother & father.

    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    that suffering has a clear origin or may have no apparent origin: "Mother and father" here could mean the causes (like craving)
    Dhammapada 294 says to kill the mother & father, which is said to mean killing craving & conceit. But in MN 117, mother & father appear to mean your biological mother & father. It is right view to believe you have a mother & father who sacrificed for you and provided you with gifts. Therefore the suttas say:
    "I tell you, monks, there are two people who are not easy to repay. Which two? Your mother & father. Even if you were to carry your mother on one shoulder & your father on the other shoulder for 100 years, and were to look after them by anointing, massaging, bathing, & rubbing their limbs, and they were to defecate & urinate right there [on your shoulders], you would not in that way pay or repay your parents.

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi....031.than.html
    **************

    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    "spontaneously" could mean without apparent cause (like apparently without any cravings).
    The above teaching is interesting because it is unclear however it must have existed during the Buddha's time. Both the Vedas and Jains have different worded teachings that are translated as spontaneously arisen, such as God is arisen without cause. The only clue I can think of is in MN 12, which as some humans, hell beings, etc, are spontaneously generated, as follows:
    What is spontaneous generation? There are gods and denizens of hell and certain human beings and some beings in the lower worlds; this is called spontaneous generation.

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi....012.ntbb.html
    This teaching may refer to "instant kamma", who knows?, such as:
    Then the first yakkha, ignoring the second yakkha, gave Ven. Sāriputta a blow on the head. And with that blow he might have knocked over an elephant seven or eight cubits tall, or split a great rocky crag. But right there the yakkha — yelling, "I'm burning!" — fell into the Great Hell.

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi...4.04.than.html

    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    and that there are those who developed the Noble Eightfold Path and realized Nibbana: The realization could be in regard of the unconditioned.
    Spontaneously arisen is used to refer to Non-Returner, as follows:

    "In this community of monks there are monks who, with the wasting away of the five lower fetters, are due to be spontaneously born, there to be totally unbound, destined never again to return from that world: such are the monks in this community of monks.

    MN 118; MN 22; etc

    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    Some of you could also argue that Nibbana is not "the other world" but "beyond the world".
    Yes. Ud 8.1 says:
    There is, bhikkhus, that base where there is no earth, no water, no fire, no air; no base consisting of the infinity of space, no base consisting of the infinity of consciousness, no base consisting of nothingness, no base consisting of neither-perception-nor-non-perception; neither this world nor another world nor both; neither sun nor moon. Here, bhikkhus, I say there is no coming, no going, no staying, no deceasing, no uprising. Not fixed, not movable, it has no support. Just this is the end of suffering.

    Nibbana Sutta https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi...8.01.irel.html
    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    But I ask what then is this other world declared by good and virtuous people that was realized for themselves by direct knowledge. How can this be other than Nibbana?
    The good and virtuous people can realize for themselves by direct knowledge the human world, heavenly world and hell world, such as:

    "It's a gain for you, monks, a great gain, that you've gained the opportunity to live the holy life. I have seen a hell named 'Six Spheres of Contact.' Whatever form one sees there with the eye is undesirable, never desirable; displeasing, never pleasing; disagreeable, never agreeable. Whatever sound one hears there with the ear... Whatever aroma one smells there with the nose... Whatever flavor one tastes there with the tongue... Whatever tactile sensation one touches there with the body... Whatever idea one cognizes there with the intellect is undesirable, never desirable; displeasing, never pleasing; disagreeable, never agreeable.

    "It's a gain for you, monks, a great gain, that you've gained the opportunity to live the holy life. I have seen a heaven named 'Six Spheres of Contact.' Whatever form one sees there with the eye is desirable, never undesirable; pleasing, never displeasing; agreeable, never disagreeable. Whatever sound one hears there with the ear... Whatever aroma one smells there with the nose... Whatever flavor one tastes there with the tongue... Whatever tactile sensation one touches there with the body... Whatever idea one cognizes there with the intellect is desirable, never undesirable; pleasing, never displeasing; agreeable, never disagreeable.

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi....135.than.html

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    Forums Member mjaviem's Avatar
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    So the other world that virtuous recluses and brahmins declare is not this world but a world closer to nibbāna from where a person doesn't ever return and only reachable by destroying the five lower fetters...

    ...
    (3) “And what is the person who is inwardly firm? Here, with the utter destruction of the five lower fetters, some person is of spontaneous birth, due to attain final nibbāna there without ever returning from that world. This is called the person who is inwardly firm.
    ...
    AN 4.5 Along with the stream (B. Bodhi)
    Last edited by Element; 06 Nov 21 at 04:36.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    So the other world that virtuous recluses and brahmins declare is not this world but a world closer to nibbāna from where a person doesn't ever return and only reachable by destroying the five lower fetters...


    AN 4.5 Along with the stream (B. Bodhi)
    Tenacious . The above appears actually a very logical conclusion, based on the terminology used.

    However, I wrote in my Rebirth Booklet I have doubts about this teaching because: (i) this teaching is for laypeople (e.g. MN 60, AN 10.176, AN 10.211, etc); and (ii) it appears vague what "spontaneous birth" would mean to laypeople.

    It is correct what you said that "spontaneous birth" applies to non-returners. However, while never clearly explained, "spontaneous birth" is not exclusively used like this in the suttas (example, "spontaneous generation" in MN 12).


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    Forums Member mjaviem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Element View Post
    Tenacious . The above appears actually a very logical conclusion, based on the terminology used.

    However, I wrote in my Rebirth Booklet I have doubts about this teaching because: (i) this teaching is for laypeople (e.g. MN 60, AN 10.176, AN 10.211, etc); and (ii) it appears vague what "spontaneous birth" would mean to laypeople.

    It is correct what you said that "spontaneous birth" applies to non-returners. However, while never clearly explained, "spontaneous birth" is not exclusively used like this in the suttas (example, "spontaneous generation" in MN 12).

    Yep, tenacious but notice how I desisted in thinking the other world might refer to nibbana and started thinking is the destination where Noble ones are found. You said the other world in the suttas are heavenly and hellish worlds. Now I think in MN 117 it's not nibbana, which is not a world, but it's not a hell either.. I think part of right view for worldlings according to MN 117 is to know there is that heavenly world where those free from the lower fetters are.

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    Global Moderator Element's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjaviem View Post
    I think part of right view for worldlings according to MN 117 is to know there is that heavenly world where those free from the lower fetters are.
    The Brahmanism during & prior to the Buddha's time refer to the human world and the world of the gods/heaven, here.

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