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Thread: Mundane and Supramundane

  1. #11
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    I take mundane to mean anything and everything that can be taught in language. Supramundane is experiential understanding, that which is seen directly by investigation and observation, not itself based on thought. Supramundane understanding is like knowing what sight is by seeing, or what sound is by hearing; it's not the sights and sounds themselves, separated and classified conceptually, but rather the experience itself. Enough of these experiences intuitively re-direct the mind and transform the mind until wrong views are abandoned.

  2. #12
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aloka-D View Post
    Do you have references/links for the suttas mentioned, please Stuka ?

    MN 79 Culasakuludayi Sutta and MN 38 Mahatanhasankhaya Sutta.

  3. #13
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cloud View Post
    I take mundane to mean anything and everything that can be taught in language. Supramundane is experiential understanding, that which is seen directly by investigation and observation, not itself based on thought. Supramundane understanding is like knowing what sight is by seeing, or what sound is by hearing; it's not the sights and sounds themselves, separated and classified conceptually, but rather the experience itself. Enough of these experiences intuitively re-direct the mind and transform the mind until wrong views are abandoned.
    But everything the Buddha taught -- which of course includes his own lokuttaradhamma, his own Path right up through Nibbana -- he taught using language.

  4. #14
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    Yes stuka, but the supramundane understanding is the result of practice, not of conceptually understanding the teachings. Direct experiential insight is supramundane. All of the teachings are mundane, can not be other than mundane. They can _lead_ to supramundane knowledge. That is the difference between our world of thought and of true wisdom.

  5. #15
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    Fine for you, but the Buddha did not teach Dhamma like that.

  6. #16
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    Didn't he? I'd appreciate it if you could find where a teaching is itself supramundane rather than a path to supramundane. Otherwise we'll both just have to agree to disagree and be happy with our views.

  7. #17
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    I've actually been trying to find something on this myself on the web, but it seems everywhere supramundane is used is talking about stream-entry and beyond, the fruits of the practice rather than the teachings themselves. If you find anything reputable otherwise, please let us know.

  8. #18
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    Maybe a better way of explaining what I mean as the difference between mundane and supramundane...

    I tell you that a fire is hot, that it causes pain, and that you don't want to stick your hand in it. From that you've come to the mundane understanding that a fire is hot and causes pain.

    Wanting to verify your understanding, you go ahead and stick your hand in the fire (just a little). The fire burns and causes you pain. That burning, that pain which you experience, would be the supramundane knowledge.

    Anyone else wanna chime in? =)

  9. #19
    Forums Member stuka's Avatar
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    MN 117, Maha Cattarisaka SUtta (Bodhi trans):

    7. “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.
    *
    8. “And what, bhikkhus, is right view that is noble, taintless, supramundane, a factor of the path? The wisdom, the faculty of wisdom, the power of wisdom, the investigation-of-states enlightenment factor, the path factor of right view in one whose mind is noble, whose mind is taintless, who possesses the noble path and is developing the noble path:1103 this is right view that is noble, taintless, supramundane, a factor of the path.
    The actual word in Pali is lokuttara, which does not mean "supramundane" in the sense that you are using it, which is a later interpretation based upon a misinterpretation of the Buddha's teachings as a description of "the true nature of reality".

    The idea that is popular among so-called "traditionalists" that "supramundane" teachings are only for those who are arhants is a misrepresentation of the Buddhas teachings. The Four Noble Truths, the Noble Eightfold Path -- the Buddha's own unique teachings -- are the lokuttara Path.


    Edit: Thanissaro's translation ( http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipit....117.than.html )translates "Discernment" rather than "wisdom":

    "And what is the right view that is 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 of one developing the noble path whose mind is noble, whose mind is free from effluents, who is fully possessed of the noble path. This is the right view that is without effluents, transcendent, a factor of the path.
    Last edited by stuka; 07 May 11 at 18:22.

  10. #20
    Global Moderator Esho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cloud
    Anyone else wanna chime in? =)
    Hi Cloud,

    When I stick my hand in the fire... just a little... I can experience pain. I am a devotee about having an experience so to learn. I have ever thought that the true way to learn is through direct experience because if it is not direct it will lead to delusion and to fabrication. This is about empirical knowledge and most of the achievements that one can have with the teachings of the Buddha, mainly the Pali Dhamma, are about direct experience. But, aren't we talking about empiricism more than Supra mundane issue?

    The problems that have always been faced by empiricism is that the experience can not be given to another person. Is highly personal but that do not mean is not universal. Everybody that decides to put the hand in the fire, will experience pain. But you can not give that pain to that person just telling about pain.

    The Buddha said, sensual pleasures are about gratification, danger and escape. We have to experience this when we are into a given pleasure. This is a universal experience but it has to be understood just by empirical experimentation. So I do not see where is the Supra mundane issue in this.


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