RE: No more respawns

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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

No more respawns

Posts: 564 Join Date: 2/22/20 Recent Posts
Key point of Buddhadharma is ending cycle of rebirths and yet this notion is rarely discussed.

It kinda means that the main prize for spending many hours a day for years, go on retreats, etc. is to literally self destruct.

Opinions?
A. Dietrich Ringle, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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I tend to think we have already self-destructed. Finding grace is what we yearn for. And being disappointed by it.
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Opinions?

My opinion is that this means we know the truth of how the self is constructed by mind (it's impermanent, a source of dissatisfaction, and not actually "me"). To me, the cycle of rebirth and death describes the arising and passing away of the sense that there is a permanent self. So yes, we're trying to deconstruct our sense of self. If you want to wax poetic and call this self-destruction, go for it.
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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To me, the cycle of rebirth and death describes the arising and passing away of the sense that there is a permanent self.

Then why these numbers are used to describe different paths in 4-paths model?
7 times for first path, and once for second path. I can digest it that 7 could be metaphotic maybe, but one time returner? If it's not talking about past lives in the sense of reincarnation, I don't know what a meaningful explanation for these numbers could be.
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Who knows? How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?


Personally, not much. Very little for most part.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
Personally, not much. Very little for most part.
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Ni Nurta:
Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
Personally, not much. Very little for most part.


I love this emoticon
Poor buddha!
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Siavash:
Ni Nurta:
Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
Personally, not much. Very little for most part.


I love this emoticon
Poor buddha!




THE SKY IS CRYING
(Elmore James)

The sky is crying, look at the tears roll down the street
The sky is crying, look at the tears roll down the street
I'm waiting in tears looking for my baby, and I wonder where can she be?
I saw my baby one morning, and she was walking on down the street
I saw my baby one morning, yes she was walking on down the street
Made me feel so good until my poor heart would skip a beat
I got a bad feeling, my baby, my baby don't love me no more
I got a bad feeling, my baby don't love me no more
Now the sky's been crying, the tears rolling down my door
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1093 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
To me rarely it feels that the sky is crying, often it feels like the sky and earth are celebrating together. Thunder storm, sky is having an adventure emoticon .
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Siavash:
To me rarely it feels that the sky is crying, often it feels like the sky and earth are celebrating together. Thunder storm, sky is having an adventure emoticon .


“Stars, I have seen them fall,
But when they drop and die
No star is lost at all
From all the star-sown sky.
The toil of all that be
Helps not the primal fault;
It rains into the sea
And still the sea is salt.”

― A.E. Housman, A Shropshire Lad
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?


Personally, not much. Very little for most part.

my whole heart...


(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)


(????????)
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1093 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
terry:
Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?


Personally, not much. Very little for most part.

my whole heart...


(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)


(????????)


Well, it's a 2500 years old tradition, because we, people, based on our experience and shared discernment give it that credit to be a tradition.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Siavash:
terry:
Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?


Personally, not much. Very little for most part.

my whole heart...


(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)


(????????)


Well, it's a 2500 years old tradition, because we, people, based on our experience and shared discernment give it that credit to be a tradition.

   The very definition of credible.
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1093 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
terry:
Siavash:
terry:
Siavash:
How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?


Personally, not much. Very little for most part.

my whole heart...


(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)


(????????)


Well, it's a 2500 years old tradition, because we, people, based on our experience and shared discernment give it that credit to be a tradition.

   The very definition of credible.

Sure. My point is, we give that credit, and we can take it too.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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terry:

(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)
(????????)
Random idea that comes during your daily sit?
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1575 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Ni Nurta:
terry:

(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)
(????????)
Random idea that comes during your daily sit?

I think ... 
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Ni Nurta:
terry:

(what could have more credibility than a 2500 year old tradition?)
(????????)
Random idea that comes during your daily sit?

   I don't have ideas during my sits.

   None of my ideas are random, or all of them are.

   How does this matter to you? A random shot?

terry
   
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
Who knows? How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
We definitely have to go beyond these obsolete belief systems. The word "suffering" is used with many different meanings. Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?

That's likely to be a fruitful conversation.

I'll go first: I posit that what Buddhism means by "suffering" is better described as those things the mind does that cause us to 1) attach to objects or 2) fear or be dissatisfied by objects. It's the process of identifying with "things" we perceive around us as part of the subject/object illusion we live in. It is this illusion/delusion that causes us to "suffer."

This process or condition is often called "ignorance."


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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?

That's likely to be a fruitful conversation.

I'll go first: I posit that what Buddhism means by "suffering" is better described as those things the mind does that cause us to 1) attach to objects or 2) fear or be dissatisfied by objects. It's the process of identifying with "things" we perceive around us as part of the subject/object illusion we live in. It is this illusion/delusion that causes us to "suffer."

This process or condition is often called "ignorance."



Yeps! emoticon We can go home now. Waiter, can I have the bill please emoticon 
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 345 Join Date: 2/11/20 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
I'll go first: I posit that what Buddhism means by "suffering" is better described as those things the mind does that cause us to 1) attach to objects or 2) fear or be dissatisfied by objects. It's the process of identifying with "things" we perceive around us as part of the subject/object illusion we live in. It is this illusion/delusion that causes us to "suffer."

This process or condition is often called "ignorance."


Chris would you think it's fair to say that the object we normally consider to be our "self" (that is, an objective, permanent self) is a view which is taken out of ignorance?

Then, could you say that when we seek to 'deconstruct' the self, another way to say the same thing would be to say that we are seeking to eliminate ignorant, or mistaken, views (AKA delusions) around how we view or understand the self to exist?  (Or anything to exist, for that matter)
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris would you think it's fair to say that the object we normally consider to be our "self" (that is, an objective, permanent self) is a view which is taken out of ignorance?

I hold this truth to be self-evident (after some serious examination, of course).

I have accepted this definition. I practice well, and am no longer attached to anything.  I've seen that I don't have to identify with anything that comes into my awareness. I don't cling to things or run away from them. I calmly observe all my experience.  But...my child gets sick. I see him in agony. My body is racked with emotions, grief. Thought is in a whirlwind.  Where is the end of suffering now? 

I'd ask you this in response: If you don't feel something like grief when your child is sick, what are you?

I'd say, as I did up-thread, that when you feel grief you're a live, conscious human being. Feeling is how you roll. You can understand the process that generates your feeings, you can see how it works even in real time, how the mind creates separation and the duality of experience, but you can't get away from your emotions and some amount of suffering entirely ad long as you're alive and conscious.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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[quote=Chris Marti
I hold this truth to be self-evident (after some serious examination, of course).

Pun intended? emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Pun intended?

Of course!
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?

That's likely to be a fruitful conversation.

I'll go first: I posit that what Buddhism means by "suffering" is better described as those things the mind does that cause us to 1) attach to objects or 2) fear or be dissatisfied by objects. It's the process of identifying with "things" we perceive around us as part of the subject/object illusion we live in. It is this illusion/delusion that causes us to "suffer."

This process or condition is often called "ignorance."


Ok, let's set up a scenario. I have accepted this definition. I practice well, and am no longer attached to anything.  I've seen that I don't have to identify with anything that comes into my awareness. I don't cling to things or run away from them. I calmly observe all my experience.  But...my child gets sick. I see him in agony. My body is racked with emotions, grief. Thought is in a whirlwind.  Where is the end of suffering now? 
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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"But...my child gets sick. I see him in agony. My body is racked with emotions, grief. Thought is in a whirlwind.  Where is the end of suffering now? "

It's in Knowing of that particular unfolding. 
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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I have accepted this definition.

Our work here is done, then!

emoticon
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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So, now we have to refine the definition of suffering or come up with something different.  Because if the "knowing of that particular unfolding"  and "can't get away from your emotions and some amount of suffering entirely as long as you're alive and conscious" are the real outcomes, then there is no embodied end of suffering in this life. There's something else.  I'm playing the devil's advocate, because I really think that unreal expectations based on old parchments has to go.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Angel Roberto Puente:
So, now we have to refine the definition of suffering or come up with something different.  Because if the "knowing of that particular unfolding"  and "can't get away from your emotions and some amount of suffering entirely as long as you're alive and conscious" are the real outcomes, then there is no embodied end of suffering in this life. There's something else.  I'm playing the devil's advocate, because I really think that unreal expectations based on old parchments has to go.

Have a go at this podcast! Cosmic Joke and CONR by Kenneth Folk https://deconstructingyourself.com/dy-002-cosmic-joke-guest-kenneth-folk.html
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Papa Che Dusko:
Angel Roberto Puente:
So, now we have to refine the definition of suffering or come up with something different.  Because if the "knowing of that particular unfolding"  and "can't get away from your emotions and some amount of suffering entirely as long as you're alive and conscious" are the real outcomes, then there is no embodied end of suffering in this life. There's something else.  I'm playing the devil's advocate, because I really think that unreal expectations based on old parchments has to go.

Have a go at this podcast! Cosmic Joke and CONR by Kenneth Folk https://deconstructingyourself.com/dy-002-cosmic-joke-guest-kenneth-folk.html
That's a great interview! I had forgotten that I had heard it. Food for thought, down to earth. How we react to this kind of information can show us where we stand in regards to experience vs ideas and traditions. 
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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So, now we have to refine the definition of suffering or come up with something different.  Because if the "knowing of that particular unfolding"  and "can't get away from your emotions and some amount of suffering entirely as long as you're alive and conscious" are the real outcomes, then there is no embodied end of suffering in this life. There's something else.  I'm playing the devil's advocate, because I really think that unreal expectations based on old parchments has to go.

Indeed. Let's just forget what the parchment says and base this definition on our own experience. A much less dubious and more grounded way to go, wouldn't you agree? I've already put my cards on the table - so based on my own mediation practice and personal experience:

1. Suffering is part of being human and thus cannot be entirely avoided as long as we're conscious and alive
2. Suffering is the result of the illusions/delusions (ignorance) produced by mind
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
So, now we have to refine the definition of suffering or come up with something different.  Because if the "knowing of that particular unfolding"  and "can't get away from your emotions and some amount of suffering entirely as long as you're alive and conscious" are the real outcomes, then there is no embodied end of suffering in this life. There's something else.  I'm playing the devil's advocate, because I really think that unreal expectations based on old parchments has to go.

Indeed. Let's just forget what the parchment says and base this definition on our own experience. A much less dubious and more grounded way to go, wouldn't you agree? I've already put my cards on the table - so based on my own mediation practice and personal experience:

1. Suffering is part of being human and thus cannot be entirely avoided as long as we're conscious and alive
2. Suffering is the result of the illusions/delusions (ignorance) produced by mind
You know I'm a phenomenology fan. I would agree that #1 inevitable and propose to investigate #2 further to see how it's applied. If we say that the illusion is that we take everything that is produced in the mind as definitive, solid, something we are obligated to respond to, to elaborate on, then seeing that this is not true will reduce suffering in a specific way. Staying with the experience avoids a feedback loop, an echo, that is amplified by thinking about what comes up in the mind. Suffering is still there, but will not extend beyond what is happening in the present. Thoughts?    
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Thoughts? 

You've described what I see. My core practice from about 2002 to mid-2010 was to deeply explore and investigate #2. I wrote it up, journaled it at Kenneth Folk's urging, as I went along:

http://awakenetwork.org/magazine/cmarti/70 

There are six segments of the journal I kept, all posted to Awakenetwork, starting after the Theravada paths started to show up in 2009.
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
Thoughts? 

You've described what I see. My core practice from about 2002 to mid-2010 was to deeply explore and investigate #2. I wrote it up, journaled it at Kenneth Folk's urging, as I went along:

http://awakenetwork.org/magazine/cmarti/70 

There are six segments of the journal I kept, all posted to Awakenetwork, starting after the Theravada paths started to show up in 2009.
Thank you for the link. This is why I think phenomenology is important. Choosing experience over theories will always lead to common ground.  I saw #2 in real-time when I had to deal with the death of my mother and oldest sister a month apart.  I would like to see a standardized way of sharing this knowledge efficiently. 
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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There's something else. 

What if we were to call that something else "wisdom?"
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
There's something else. 

What if we were to call that something else "wisdom?"

And this Wisdom would be like a compassionate grandma watching over myriads of kids playing in the sand box?  EDIT to add smilies 
emoticon emoticon emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Papa - please read this:

https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Praj%C3%B1%C4%81_(Buddhism)
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
Papa - please read this:

https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Praj%C3%B1%C4%81_(Buddhism)

Oh emoticon my bad! I did edit my post above. But thanks for the link emoticon emoticon 
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
Chris Marti:
Who knows? How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
We definitely have to go beyond these obsolete belief systems. The word "suffering" is used with many different meanings. Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?

   If you aren't stretching a definiton out of shape to some degree, the word becomes a cypher and lacks freshness.

   Languages are constantly being redefined, it drives dictionary folks crazy.

   If everyone agreed, one might suspect a pressure to conform.

   Feel free to offer your definiton for "suffering.".

   It's been said before that words have three senses: 1) what the word means, 2) what I mean by it, and 3) what you mean by it. It is precisely in these differences that we communicate. So it is not agreement we seek but mutual understanding. Which looks a lot like agreement, especially where the norm is confusion and misunderstanding.

   Like chris was saying, diversity is good. In the context of mutual respect and giving people some space to work things out.


terry
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 162 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
terry:
Angel Roberto Puente:
Chris Marti:
Who knows? How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
We definitely have to go beyond these obsolete belief systems. The word "suffering" is used with many different meanings. Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?

   If you aren't stretching a definiton out of shape to some degree, the word becomes a cypher and lacks freshness.

   Languages are constantly being redefined, it drives dictionary folks crazy.

   If everyone agreed, one might suspect a pressure to conform.

   Feel free to offer your definiton for "suffering.".

   It's been said before that words have three senses: 1) what the word means, 2) what I mean by it, and 3) what you mean by it. It is precisely in these differences that we communicate. So it is not agreement we seek but mutual understanding. Which looks a lot like agreement, especially where the norm is confusion and misunderstanding.

   Like chris was saying, diversity is good. In the context of mutual respect and giving people some space to work things out.


terry
When the "end of suffering is what's being offered, it's no longer a question of semantics and personal interpretations.  When a doctor calls for the removal of the gallbladder he's not starting a philosophical discussion.  He means that when you walk out you will not have a gallbladder.  Period.
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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I'm curious - how is suffering like a gallbladder? Maybe I'm too dim to see the similarity. 
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
I'm curious - how is suffering like a gallbladder? Maybe I'm too dim to see the similarity. 
"end of suffering" 
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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I'm struggling with the metaphor - ending suffering is like the doctor removing a gallbladder. I have suspicions that ending suffering is not the same sort of thing. So Angel - what is it that you call suffering? Is it the proverbial second arrow? Is it physical pain? Is it pushing things away? Is it clinging to other things? I experience suffering in some form, however small, in everything I perceive, so...
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
I'm struggling with the metaphor - ending suffering is like the doctor removing a gallbladder. I have suspicions that ending suffering is not the same sort of thing. So Angel - what is it that you call suffering? Is it the proverbial second arrow? Is it physical pain? Is it pushing things away? Is it clinging to other things? I experience suffering in some form, however small, in everything I perceive, so...
      What I'm addressing is the contention made by Terry that imprecision can be allowed in the use of the term "suffering" because that's the way language functions. I contend that when you advertise the "end of suffering" as a real outcome of practice it has to have a definitive meaning. Just like the procedure performed by a doctor has to have an exact name and an exact outcome. Imagine if two doctors had to decide on a procedure and each had a different version of what it meant. The question of finding an exact definition was what started the discussion. I'm not advocating for my definition or any other. The idea was to open an interesting discussion. I think the mission is accomplished.

To add fuel to the discussion consider these two views of suffering:

 On Suffering and the End of Suffering, Sharon Salzburg,
"It’s often said that the Buddha simply taught about “suffering and the end of suffering.” Suffering in his teaching does not necessarily mean grave physical pain, but rather the mental suffering we undergo when our tendency to hold onto pleasure encounters the fleeting nature of life, and our experiences become unsatisfying and ungovernable.".......
"When we open ourselves to this fully, it becomes possible to touch an essential truth about life itself: suffering of one kind or another is a natural part of existence. Knowing this truth gives our lives wholeness and peace, as it frees us from the exhausting postures of pretense and denial. Sometimes when we open to suffering and see the roots of it, we also see clearly the actions we might take to ease the suffering. For instance, my friend’s young son suffered much less because of his mother’s care and support. In this way, the path to the end of suffering includes clearly seeing the pain and replacing denial with awareness and compassion."
https://www.lionsroar.com/the-buddha-taught-one-thing-only/

Conceptualizing suffering and pain, Noelia Bueno-Gomez
Conclusion: 
"Defining suffering substantively turns it into a normative concept, which results in epistemological mistakes and moral injustices. Not all suffering is alienating and it is unfair to deny the suffering of others; for instance, the categorical affirmation that childbirth pain does not entail suffering, as stated by Svenaeus [24], can be unfair. At the same time, not all aspects of suffering can be objectified. A definition of pain cannot be based only on the neurological understanding of it, but has to incorporate other relevant factors such as cognitive awareness, interpretation, behavioral dispositions, as well as cultural and educational factors beyond the medical sphere. Hence, a formal, non-essential and non-naturalistic conceptualization of both terms is proposed. Suffering is an unpleasant or even anguishing experience which can severely affect a person on a psychophysical and even existential level. Like suffering, pain is also unpleasant. Both are experiences which affect the whole person (not merely their “body” or “mind”), and a crucial aspect of them is the personal attitude and choices which are in turn influenced by cultural and social patterns. Not only the natural sciences, but also the social sciences and humanities play a crucial role in understanding all the dimensions of these phenomena. Additionally, the view of a person as a psychophysical instead of a dualistic being demands a total paradigm shift in medicine and new research approaches which are able to challenge the boundaries of various disciplines."
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5621131/


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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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I think this would be a more interesting and worthwhile discussion for you to share your definition of suffering with us, Angel. We can all quote from the writings of others, but putting our own interpretations out here for others to see and discuss is much better, IMHO.

emoticon
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Chris Marti:
I think this would be a more interesting and worthwhile discussion for you to share your definition of suffering with us, Angel. We can all quote from the writings of others, but putting our own interpretations out here for others to see and discuss is much better, IMHO.

emoticon
I thought I already had, when I described how I dealt with it, you even said it was similar to what you had experienced.  There is a phenomenon I have observed in this forum. There are jumps in the continuity of the discussions.  Somebody injects an unrelated comment, a non-sequitor of sorts, and "we're off to the races" with a totally different theme. Sometimes it's just comical,  at other times it's just ridiculous.  Tim warned me once that at times I would just feel like "getting the f..    out".  Wise man!
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
Angel,

You have to understand something - I'm old. I forget way more than I recall. Now that you've reminded me, I do remember our exchange. So forgive me, please.

In my experience, DhO is different than most message boards in terms of conversational continuity. These discussions aren't as consistent as they are in many places, and folks here tend more toward ready, fire, aim, and then don't come back for a few days, weeks, or maybe even months. I've gotten used to it and obviously manage to contribute to the discontinuous stuff myself - as you now know.

And speaking of Tim, he's the most guilty of all of us! emoticon

(That's probably like saying "Beetlejuice" three times, so... Hi, Tim.)
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
To maintain my self-respect and to help get things back on track, here's our previous exchange about suffering:

Chris:
Let's just forget what the parchment says and base this definition on our own experience. A much less dubious and more grounded way to go, wouldn't you agree? I've already put my cards on the table - so based on my own mediation practice and personal experience:

1. Suffering is part of being human and thus cannot be entirely avoided as long as we're conscious and alive
2. Suffering is the result of the illusions/delusions (ignorance) produced by mind

Angel:
You know I'm a phenomenology fan. I would agree that #1 inevitable and propose to investigate #2 further to see how it's applied. If we say that the illusion is that we take everything that is produced in the mind as definitive, solid, something we are obligated to respond to, to elaborate on, then seeing that this is not true will reduce suffering in a specific way. Staying with the experience avoids a feedback loop, an echo, that is amplified by thinking about what comes up in the mind. Suffering is still there, but will not extend beyond what is happening in the present. Thoughts?    

Chris:
You've described what I see. My core practice from about 2002 to mid-2010 was to deeply explore and investigate #2. I wrote it up, journaled it at Kenneth Folk's urging, as I went along:

http://awakenetwork.org/magazine/cmarti/70 

There are six segments of the journal I kept, all posted to Awakenetwork, starting after the Theravada paths started to show up in 2009.

Angel:

Thank you for the link. This is why I think phenomenology is important. Choosing experience over theories will always lead to common ground.  I saw #2 in real-time when I had to deal with the death of my mother and oldest sister a month apart.  I would like to see a standardized way of sharing this knowledge efficiently. 
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
I think the word "suffering"  can a big part of the problems folks can encounter when taking on a spiritual path, which they often do in order to reduce what they feel is out of whack in their lives. I took on this path because I felt a weird disconnect between what was "actually" happening and how I was feeling about what was happening. It was causing emotional stress and anxiety. Turns out that feeling of disconnectedness was a Big Hint, but it took years to realize that.

When we promise the "end of suffering" people interpret that in many ways, sometimes helpful, sometimes harmful. The worst effect I see, mostly coming from practitioners of pragmatic dharma a la MCTB, is that some take it to mean they need to drop their human-ness by eliminating their emotions. This is usually interpreted as eliminating "negative" emotions like anger, sadness, fear, and not necessarily "good" emotions like happiness, love, compassion.
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 162 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
I think the word "suffering"  can a big part of the problems folks can encounter when taking on a spiritual path, which they often do in order to reduce what they feel is out of whack in their lives. I took on this path because I felt a weird disconnect between what was "actually" happening and how I was feeling about what was happening. It was causing emotional stress and anxiety. Turns out that feeling of disconnectedness was a Big Hint, but it took years to realize that.

When we promise the "end of suffering" people interpret that in many ways, sometimes helpful, sometimes harmful. The worst effect I see, mostly coming from practitioners of pragmatic dharma a la MCTB, is that some take it to mean they need to drop their human-ness by eliminating their emotions. This is usually interpreted as eliminating "negative" emotions like anger, sadness, fear, and not necessarily "good" emotions like happiness, love, compassion.
     You're right about the problem of interpretation. When a clear standardized definition is not available people will make up their own.   I think this problem extends much farther and affects other aspects of practice including the one of bug and feature that you began to discuss with JW.  When interpretations are not clear they can be bent to justify all kinds of inappropriate behaviors and beliefs that are then imposed on the members of the group. Abuse is easy when only the leader is the arbitrator of "truth".  Who will put the bell on the cat? 
     I dare to think that the pragmatic dharma movement should have a congress where all aspects of practice are defined and standardized.  I know it sounds impossible but it's a dream worth working towards.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 345 Join Date: 2/11/20 Recent Posts
I dare to think that the pragmatic dharma movement should have a congress where all aspects of practice are defined and standardized. I know it sounds impossible but it's a dream worth working towards.

I mean, this has already happened, though perhaps not explicitly. It's how the have the current landscape of the various subschools within the pragmatic dharma greater family today. I think what it always comes down to is just recognizing the context in which you are operating, as completely as possible.  For instance, this same conversation has probably been had a hundred times on this forum before.
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 5293 Join Date: 12/8/18 Recent Posts
Yeah, it's not the first time, and it's not like there is one single approach to it. Different people tend to have different ideas not only about the labels but also about how to categorize the stuff that needs labels. Shinzen Young has created a whole system, for instance, or actually several different versions of it. ARP, have you ever tried to reach consensus in a parental cooperative preschool or at a work place or something like that? Not always so easy. It doesn't seem to get easier among people in the dharma either. People are... people. And it's not like reality just lies there readily packaged in neat boxes for anyone to find.
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 162 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Oh,
I fell into a time warp! That the conversation keeps coming up shows
that the roots of the problem have never been properly addressed. I
know that people protect their fiefdom. That's why big organizations
religious or otherwise hold such tight reins. The Catholic church is
a good example but Buddhist organizations also operate like this. I
understand your point, Linda. I suppose that change will have to come
when people get tired of not getting the results they are offered.
Whoever comes up with the most efficient system will prevail. That race
has already left the starting gate.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 345 Join Date: 2/11/20 Recent Posts
Haha, yes... samsara is still samsara, for better or worse. It's what we've got, and it probably won't ever change. However, with each iteration through the cycle, there is just a sliver of possibility that things might improve a tiny bit each time.  Though to be fair, it can slide backwards into a confusing mess just as easily.
Personally, I think change is possible. But a complete overhaul of the system rarely works. Change is incremental and it must come from a place of two-way trust. 

FYI - I am not trying to imply your insight is not valuable.  It can be illuminating to discuss these things regardless if they have happened before or not.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
J W:
Haha, yes... samsara is still samsara, for better or worse. It's what we've got, and it probably won't ever change. However, with each iteration through the cycle, there is just a sliver of possibility that things might improve a tiny bit each time.  Though to be fair, it can slide backwards into a confusing mess just as easily.
Personally, I think change is possible. But a complete overhaul of the system rarely works. Change is incremental and it must come from a place of two-way trust. 

FYI - I am not trying to imply your insight is not valuable.  It can be illuminating to discuss these things regardless if they have happened before or not.


   I feel moved to point out that as we discuss these things, the house is on fire. Yes, the arrow is poison, yes the gall bladder needs to come out.

  No it doesn't matter whether the dharma is conditioned, extra conditioned or super conditoned. The more defined, the more opposition.

  Better to recite poetry than a creed. Even bad poetry.






A wonderful bird is the pelican,

His bill holds more than his belican.

He can take in his beak,

Enough food for a week,

But I'm damned if I see how the helican.


~ogden nash
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 5293 Join Date: 12/8/18 Recent Posts
I don't think there is a one size fits all. You'll need different pointers depending on from where you are coming. I'm all for the communication about it, though. I think it makes it easier for people to navigate and find what system works best for them in a given context.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 564 Join Date: 2/22/20 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
I suppose that change will have to come
when people get tired of not getting the results they are offered.
Whoever comes up with the most efficient system will prevail. That race
has already left the starting gate.
Here is my proposition:

step 1. Nibbana
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
Oh,
I fell into a time warp! That the conversation keeps coming up shows
that the roots of the problem have never been properly addressed. I
know that people protect their fiefdom. That's why big organizations
religious or otherwise hold such tight reins. The Catholic church is
a good example but Buddhist organizations also operate like this. I
understand your point, Linda. I suppose that change will have to come
when people get tired of not getting the results they are offered.
Whoever comes up with the most efficient system will prevail. That race
has already left the starting gate.

"Sects, sects, sects... that's all you buddhists ever think about."

emoticon
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
Chris Marti:
I think the word "suffering"  can a big part of the problems folks can encounter when taking on a spiritual path, which they often do in order to reduce what they feel is out of whack in their lives. I took on this path because I felt a weird disconnect between what was "actually" happening and how I was feeling about what was happening. It was causing emotional stress and anxiety. Turns out that feeling of disconnectedness was a Big Hint, but it took years to realize that.

When we promise the "end of suffering" people interpret that in many ways, sometimes helpful, sometimes harmful. The worst effect I see, mostly coming from practitioners of pragmatic dharma a la MCTB, is that some take it to mean they need to drop their human-ness by eliminating their emotions. This is usually interpreted as eliminating "negative" emotions like anger, sadness, fear, and not necessarily "good" emotions like happiness, love, compassion.
     You're right about the problem of interpretation. When a clear standardized definition is not available people will make up their own.   I think this problem extends much farther and affects other aspects of practice including the one of bug and feature that you began to discuss with JW.  When interpretations are not clear they can be bent to justify all kinds of inappropriate behaviors and beliefs that are then imposed on the members of the group. Abuse is easy when only the leader is the arbitrator of "truth".  Who will put the bell on the cat? 
     I dare to think that the pragmatic dharma movement should have a congress where all aspects of practice are defined and standardized.  I know it sounds impossible but it's a dream worth working towards.

let me see, it has been years but I had it drilled into me by the congress at nicea


I believe in one holy, catholic and apostolic church...

I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins...

and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life in the world to come...


hallelujah amen and god damn!


terry
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
I think the word "suffering"  can a big part of the problems folks can encounter when taking on a spiritual path, which they often do in order to reduce what they feel is out of whack in their lives. I took on this path because I felt a weird disconnect between what was "actually" happening and how I was feeling about what was happening. It was causing emotional stress and anxiety. Turns out that feeling of disconnectedness was a Big Hint, but it took years to realize that.

When we promise the "end of suffering" people interpret that in many ways, sometimes helpful, sometimes harmful. The worst effect I see, mostly coming from practitioners of pragmatic dharma a la MCTB, is that some take it to mean they need to drop their human-ness by eliminating their emotions. This is usually interpreted as eliminating "negative" emotions like anger, sadness, fear, and not necessarily "good" emotions like happiness, love, compassion.


   There is a market place for every human desire. You want to "end suffering," someone will offer you that product, some snake oil hustler, perhaps a bino, (buddhist in name only). The "end of suffering" is less likely to be acquired than the brookyn bridge. It's a con. At best it's the gold coins (yellow leaves) offered children to get them to exit the burning house. Learning to embrace suffering, to accept it on equal terms, is the real deal.

   Buddhism tells you that dukkha is an essential aspect of existence. Everything is dukkha. All dharmas are conditioned.

   So we have to deal with it. That involves "individual interpretation." Our individual interpretations, if sufficiently artistic and charismatic (genuine, authentic) can inspire others, not to follow but to emulate that freedom of expression in their own individual interpretations. Certainly not to bed taught to join in lockstep understanding of definitive, authoritative texts. I submit we have had more than enough of that with the opioid of the people.

   As the budhha says, "Now is the time to do as you will." Chips fall. Let 'em.

   (Not personal, chris, I'm sure you know.)

t
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
The "end of suffering" is less likely to be acquired than the brookyn bridge. It's a con. At best it's the gold coins (yellow leaves) offered children to get them to exit the burning house. Learning to embrace suffering, to accept it on equal terms, is the real deal.

Best comment yet! I think our work here is done.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
The "end of suffering" is less likely to be acquired than the brookyn bridge. It's a con. At best it's the gold coins (yellow leaves) offered children to get them to exit the burning house. Learning to embrace suffering, to accept it on equal terms, is the real deal.

Best comment yet! I think our work here is done.


"done"

hehehe


(I've been thinking of beavis and butthead lately, eric and donald jr)
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 162 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Thank you!  So, my definition of suffering and its end is the soft definition that Sharon Salzberg gives.  It's the mental suffering that we can alleviate by not indulging in denial and avoidance. What I describe as, staying with the experience and not amplifying it by adding thinking about the thoughts that come up. But you see, as shown in the scientific paper, for other people it's not so simple.  I wonder what most people think when they hear that practice leads to "the end of suffering".  I just think that it would be better if there was a common understanding.  
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
I wonder what most people think when they hear that practice leads to "the end of suffering".

I suspect (but cannot prove) that many people see this as a promise by yet another religion to relieve their earthly pain. Some are immune, some not, and so the latter buy in and end up taking it too far (per my last comment), or giving up because the promise can't be supported at the level they had assumed. I see Buddhism as a process, not as a promise. If there is a promise it is to follow a prescribed process and find out for yourself what the "end of suffering" really means.


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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
I just think that it would be better if there was a common understanding.  

This is a fascinating issue, and message boards like this one can be the worst places to go to get there. This has driven some of us to leave message boards in the past because those in charge wouldn't take a stand against rather obvious nonsense on the part of certain participants In some cases, by those they themselves put in positions of authority as moderators. This was one of those message boards once upon a time. There is a cautiousness, a shyness about having to enforce rules, that some Buddhists running message boards have that can be quite concerning.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 345 Join Date: 2/11/20 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
I just think that it would be better if there was a common understanding.  

This is a fascinating issue, and message boards like this one can be the worst places to go to get there. This has driven some of us to leave message boards in the past because those in charge wouldn't take a stand against rather obvious nonsense on the part of certain participants In some cases, by those they themselves put in positions of authority as moderators. This was one of those message boards once upon a time. There is a cautiousness, a shyness about having to enforce rules, that Buddhists running message boards have that can be quite concerning.
Perhaps this is off topic. But I notice this same thing even in traditional sanghas, at least the one I am a part of.  It's like the bug/feature argument. Some may say it's a bug (to be so tolerant), others, it's a feature. The Buddhist is more prone to want to understand how it could be both a bug and a feature.  But it doesn't always give a definitive answer to the question and so the issue persists ... emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 3775 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
I think it's a bug, not a feature. It may actually contribute to the unwillingness of sanghas to stand up to the likes of Richard Baker. It's "nicer" I suppose, to let a predator have their way as opposed to calling them out. And there's the proclivity of someone like Baker to use their "enlightenment" to cow those who do speak up. I mean, how dare they question the accomplished Master!

I suspect it's that very thing - the reverence for perceived attainment - that lies at the root. The definition of suffering can be manipulated, too.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 345 Join Date: 2/11/20 Recent Posts
I think to not call out predatory behavior in a leader is a bug for sure... maybe I'm missing what you were originally saying. The problem in question I'm talking about here is, having a small percentage of people who are really participating with the outsider, sceptic's perspective (sceptic with regard to the claims of the founder/guru/person). Which can be a bug when the person is just using it as a way to promote their own viewpoint, which is essentially just trolling, but it can be a feature because I find that these people are the ones more likely to call out predatory behavior like the example you mentioned.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
J W:
I think to not call out predatory behavior in a leader is a bug for sure... maybe I'm missing what you were originally saying. The problem in question I'm talking about here is, having a small percentage of people who are really participating with the outsider, sceptic's perspective (sceptic with regard to the claims of the founder/guru/person). Which can be a bug when the person is just using it as a way to promote their own viewpoint, which is essentially just trolling, but it can be a feature because I find that these people are the ones more likely to call out predatory behavior like the example you mentioned.


having your own, consistent viewpoint doesn't make you a troll...

it could be called integrity...

and it is true that only people with integrity call out the naked emperors, though eventually everyone gets on board, once they see it is becoming conventional and non-controversial to acknowledge the obvious truth...

the child in the emperor's new clothes parable isn't so much brave as naive and innocent, his vision uncorrupted by self-interest and the desire to maintain status within the herd...just a kid after all...


t
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
I just think that it would be better if there was a common understanding.  

This is a fascinating issue, and message boards like this one can be the worst places to go to get there. This has driven some of us to leave message boards in the past because those in charge wouldn't take a stand against rather obvious nonsense on the part of certain participants In some cases, by those they themselves put in positions of authority as moderators. This was one of those message boards once upon a time. There is a cautiousness, a shyness about having to enforce rules, that some Buddhists running message boards have that can be quite concerning.


the razor's edge...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iyT4rsObXgc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oPwl_p8GJxo
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 162 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Thank you, fellows!  Don't worry about age Chris, I'm no whippersnapper. I'm at that unholy age of 69.  Papa Che, it's not "intelectual capacity" that makes the difference, it's having so much time on my hands. I usually think over my answers and do research, to at least prevent making a total ass of myself, which is not always possible. emoticon  When I come back I find that I've been overrun by all you quick studies, like now.   By the time I wrote my reply there were bunches of comments.  Let me get to it. See you in a while.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
Thank you, fellows!  Don't worry about age Chris, I'm no whippersnapper. I'm at that unholy age of 69.  Papa Che, it's not "intelectual capacity" that makes the difference, it's having so much time on my hands. I usually think over my answers and do research, to at least prevent making a total ass of myself, which is not always possible. emoticon  When I come back I find that I've been overrun by all you quick studies, like now.   By the time I wrote my reply there were bunches of comments.  Let me get to it. See you in a while.


one of these days, son, likely on your next birhday, you are going to realize, as I did, that you are not a sexagenarian any longer...
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1575 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
I'm guilty for this I know emoticon I often tend to cycle off the theme. Mostly because my intellectual capacity is rather low. Many times I wonder what the heck am I doing amongst such smart and intellectual folks. On the docks they find me to be a wise guy but here in the deep waters of DhO I'm but a tiny sardine amongst whales. 

I ought to practice Noble silence some more emoticon too much chatter can attract the sharks! emoticon 

You are a breath of fresh air here so please do not just "get the f... out of here" emoticon 
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Papa Che Dusko:
I'm guilty for this I know emoticon I often tend to cycle off the theme. Mostly because my intellectual capacity is rather low. Many times I wonder what the heck am I doing amongst such smart and intellectual folks. On the docks they find me to be a wise guy but here in the deep waters of DhO I'm but a tiny sardine amongst whales. 

I ought to practice Noble silence some more emoticon too much chatter can attract the sharks! emoticon 

You are a breath of fresh air here so please do not just "get the f... out of here" emoticon 


   Beginner's mind is the way. Not knowing is the truth.

   It isn't a matter of size, but a matter of age. The young and fresh as opposed to the old and wizened.

   You help us keep it fresh.

t



qu'ran, sura  18:110


Say, ˹O Prophet,˺ “I am only a man like you, ˹but˺ it has been revealed to me that your God is only One God. So whoever hopes for the meeting with their Lord, let them do good deeds and associate none in the worship of their Lord.”
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
Chris Marti:
I'm struggling with the metaphor - ending suffering is like the doctor removing a gallbladder. I have suspicions that ending suffering is not the same sort of thing. So Angel - what is it that you call suffering? Is it the proverbial second arrow? Is it physical pain? Is it pushing things away? Is it clinging to other things? I experience suffering in some form, however small, in everything I perceive, so...
      What I'm addressing is the contention made by Terry that imprecision can be allowed in the use of the term "suffering" because that's the way language functions. I contend that when you advertise the "end of suffering" as a real outcome of practice it has to have a definitive meaning. Just like the procedure performed by a doctor has to have an exact name and an exact outcome. Imagine if two doctors had to decide on a procedure and each had a different version of what it meant. The question of finding an exact definition was what started the discussion. I'm not advocating for my definition or any other. The idea was to open an interesting discussion. I think the mission is accomplished.

To add fuel to the discussion consider these two views of suffering:

 On Suffering and the End of Suffering, Sharon Salzburg,
"It’s often said that the Buddha simply taught about “suffering and the end of suffering.” Suffering in his teaching does not necessarily mean grave physical pain, but rather the mental suffering we undergo when our tendency to hold onto pleasure encounters the fleeting nature of life, and our experiences become unsatisfying and ungovernable.".......
"When we open ourselves to this fully, it becomes possible to touch an essential truth about life itself: suffering of one kind or another is a natural part of existence. Knowing this truth gives our lives wholeness and peace, as it frees us from the exhausting postures of pretense and denial. Sometimes when we open to suffering and see the roots of it, we also see clearly the actions we might take to ease the suffering. For instance, my friend’s young son suffered much less because of his mother’s care and support. In this way, the path to the end of suffering includes clearly seeing the pain and replacing denial with awareness and compassion."
https://www.lionsroar.com/the-buddha-taught-one-thing-only/

Conceptualizing suffering and pain, Noelia Bueno-Gomez
Conclusion: 
"Defining suffering substantively turns it into a normative concept, which results in epistemological mistakes and moral injustices. Not all suffering is alienating and it is unfair to deny the suffering of others; for instance, the categorical affirmation that childbirth pain does not entail suffering, as stated by Svenaeus [24], can be unfair. At the same time, not all aspects of suffering can be objectified. A definition of pain cannot be based only on the neurological understanding of it, but has to incorporate other relevant factors such as cognitive awareness, interpretation, behavioral dispositions, as well as cultural and educational factors beyond the medical sphere. Hence, a formal, non-essential and non-naturalistic conceptualization of both terms is proposed. Suffering is an unpleasant or even anguishing experience which can severely affect a person on a psychophysical and even existential level. Like suffering, pain is also unpleasant. Both are experiences which affect the whole person (not merely their “body” or “mind”), and a crucial aspect of them is the personal attitude and choices which are in turn influenced by cultural and social patterns. Not only the natural sciences, but also the social sciences and humanities play a crucial role in understanding all the dimensions of these phenomena. Additionally, the view of a person as a psychophysical instead of a dualistic being demands a total paradigm shift in medicine and new research approaches which are able to challenge the boundaries of various disciplines."
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5621131/




"suffering" in english is simply not the same thing as dukkha in pali... this is what I have discussed...people who speak definitively of "suffering" do so in a homophilic post-greek sense which is distorted by a severe bias in favor of action (aggression, hubris), thus their ideas are heavily contaminated by karma...

you forget, bra, that you are talking, speaking, writing in a language never even dreamed of by shakyamuni...

I can't agree that religious texts are even authoratative, let alone definitive...

t
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
terry:
Angel Roberto Puente:
Chris Marti:
I'm struggling with the metaphor - ending suffering is like the doctor removing a gallbladder. 
      What I'm addressing is the contention made by Terry that imprecision can be allowed in the use of the term "suffering" because that's the way language functions.


   You can drive a square peg into a round hole, but in the end you will have neither a round hole nor a square peg.

   No matter how unsatisfactory this appears.

terry
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Angel Roberto Puente, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 162 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Hi Terry, we're on the same page.  That's what started the discussion, the misnomer of suffering, and the effect on the people who meditate.
I found this article from 2015 where it was being discussed,  https://secularbuddhism.org/the-importance-of-how-we-translate-the-end-of-suffering/
You see, even now just the mention of this forms a nice hot mess.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

Posts: 1641 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Angel Roberto Puente:
Hi Terry, we're on the same page.  That's what started the discussion, the misnomer of suffering, and the effect on the people who meditate.
I found this article from 2015 where it was being discussed, [url=] https://secularbuddhism.org/the-importance-of-how-we-translate-the-end-of-suffering/
You see, even now just the mention of this forms a nice hot mess.

   Hey, you had me with the gall bladder, sounded like a poison arrow to me. 

   You probably have little notion that the word "precision" to a laboratory scientist involves an incredible amount of practice and study. Most of our attention at work is (was) focused on precision, confidence and its mathematical expressions and limits.

   I'm generally 95% confident, within two standard deviations.

(wink)
t
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

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 I'm generally 95% confident, within two standard deviations.

Six sigma is al the rage these days terry. Two sigma is waaay too imprecise  emoticon
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
 I'm generally 95% confident, within two standard deviations.

Six sigma is al the rage these days terry. Two sigma is waaay too imprecise  emoticon


call me old fashioned...
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
I experience suffering in some form, however small, in everything I perceive, so...
When you experience Nibbana isntead of perceptions do you still experience suffering?
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

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When you experience Nibbana isntead of perceptions do you still experience suffering?

This is a subject best explored on its own thread, Ni Nurta. If you start that topic I'll be happy to comment.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

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Angel Roberto Puente:
terry:
Angel Roberto Puente:
Chris Marti:
Who knows? How much credence are you willing to give a 2,500-year-old oral tradition?
We definitely have to go beyond these obsolete belief systems. The word "suffering" is used with many different meanings. Can we open the discussion towards reaching a definition agreed on by everyone?

   If you aren't stretching a definiton out of shape to some degree, the word becomes a cypher and lacks freshness.

   Languages are constantly being redefined, it drives dictionary folks crazy.

   If everyone agreed, one might suspect a pressure to conform.

   Feel free to offer your definiton for "suffering.".

   It's been said before that words have three senses: 1) what the word means, 2) what I mean by it, and 3) what you mean by it. It is precisely in these differences that we communicate. So it is not agreement we seek but mutual understanding. Which looks a lot like agreement, especially where the norm is confusion and misunderstanding.

   Like chris was saying, diversity is good. In the context of mutual respect and giving people some space to work things out.


terry
When the "end of suffering is what's being offered, it's no longer a question of semantics and personal interpretations.  When a doctor calls for the removal of the gallbladder he's not starting a philosophical discussion.  He means that when you walk out you will not have a gallbladder.  Period.


   substitute "poison arrow" for "gall bladder" and you have buddhism...

t





Buddhist parable – poison arrow


Since the existence or nature of God is unknowable, some feel that can pointless or distracting to attempt to form images or theories. A Buddhist parable makes a similar point.

“The Buddha always told his disciples not to waste their time and energy in metaphysical speculation. Whenever he was asked a metaphysical question, he remained silent. Instead, he directed his disciples toward practical efforts.

“Questioned one day about the problem of the infinity of the world, the Buddha said, ‘Whether the world is finite or infinite, limited or unlimited, the problem of your liberation remains the same.’ Another time he said,

‘Suppose a man is struck by a poisoned arrow and the doctor wishes to take out the arrow immediately. Suppose the man does not want the arrow removed until he knows who shot it, his age, his parents, and why he shot it. What would happen? If he were to wait until all these questions have been answered, the man might die first.’

“Life is so short. It must not be spent in endless metaphysical speculation that does not bring us any closer to the truth.”

      As told by Thich Nhat Hanh, in Zen Keys
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Siavash, modified 3 Months ago.

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Thank you.
Yes I've heard Ken give that description in his dakinis retreat. It was not convincing at all to me.
Culadasa has another description, trying to fit it in his model, I didn't find it convincing too. (I am trying to be polite here!)
Chris's response (who knows..) was the best one I've seen.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
Opinions?

My opinion is that this means we know the truth of how the self is constructed by mind (it's impermanent, a source of dissatisfaction, and not actually "me"). To me, the cycle of rebirth and death describes the arising and passing away of the sense that there is a permanent self. So yes, we're trying to deconstruct our sense of self. If you want to wax poetic and call this self-destruction, go for it.





(opinions?

no)





you can call it nihilism...

believing in nothing, everything is unquestionably real...
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David Matte, modified 3 Months ago.

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Ni Nurta:
Key point of Buddhadharma is ending cycle of rebirths and yet this notion is rarely discussed.

It kinda means that the main prize for spending many hours a day for years, go on retreats, etc. is to literally self destruct.

Opinions?

I like to view the cycle of rebirths as something always occuring now. The self is constantly in flux — being born, dying, being reborn anew
in a moment's time.

"Self destruction" can happen now, at any time, for anyone. Even for a person who doesn't practice, there are still many brief moments in the day when the self(ing) is absent from experience, moments where one is as good as dead. This is not consciously noticed for the average person, however.
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

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David Matte:
Ni Nurta:
Key point of Buddhadharma is ending cycle of rebirths and yet this notion is rarely discussed.

It kinda means that the main prize for spending many hours a day for years, go on retreats, etc. is to literally self destruct.

Opinions?

I like to view the cycle of rebirths as something always occuring now. The self is constantly in flux — being born, dying, being reborn anew
in a moment's time.

"Self destruction" can happen now, at any time, for anyone. Even for a person who doesn't practice, there are still many brief moments in the day when the self(ing) is absent from experience, moments where one is as good as dead. This is not consciously noticed for the average person, however.


self-destruction, what a laugh...

even a dead organism still has a shadow...
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Jim Smith, modified 3 Months ago.

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Ni Nurta:
Key point of Buddhadharma is ending cycle of rebirths and yet this notion is rarely discussed.

It kinda means that the main prize for spending many hours a day for years, go on retreats, etc. is to literally self destruct.

Opinions?

"Self Destruct" is not what you think it is. 

http://ncu9nc.blogspot.com/2015/03/realizing-ultimate.html
He saw this Beingness as something like a comb. He was at the spine of the comb and all the teeth fanned out from it, each one thinking it was separate and different from all the other teeth. And that was true, but only if you looked at it from the tooth end of the comb. Once you got back to the spine or source, you could see that it wasn't true. It was all one comb. There was no real separation, except when you sat at the tooth end. It was all in one's point of view.
...
So here begins our journey to the true center, the bottom-most, innermost "point" in ourselves where our life and being runs into divine life and being - the point at which all existence comes together. This center can be compared to a coin: on the near side is our self, on the far side is the divine. One side is not the other side, yet we cannot separate the two sides.

And the end of rebirth is not the end of spiritual development any more than graduating kindergarten is the final stage of education.
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

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This is merely speculations, but I believe that patterns and ripples will continue to arise everytime there is a sense of a time being there, and that's not a personal thing or even a thing, even though it includes such beliefs. Now and then, some pattern has rippled long enough to lose its energy, and so it comes to stillness. Nevertheless, other patterns and their ripples continue to arise, and it's all driven by joy that arises from nothing, against all odds, just because it can. The impermanence of each pattern leaves space for others to follow. There is no essence to be maintained, only the space and the movement in space and the joy that is the lovemaking between space and the arisings rippling through it. 
Jake Frankfurt Middenhall, modified 3 Months ago.

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Yes, Theravada is a "cosmic suicide club" as Kenneth Folk once said in an interview. 
Mahayana clears the misconception, there is no "end of rebirh" (but there is end of karmic rebirth) All beings no matter what go thru the path until Buddhahood is reached.
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

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... Theravada is a "cosmic suicide club" as Kenneth Folk once said in an interview.

Was Kenneth referring to the cycle of rebirth and death, or was he referring to something different? Is it possible he was referring to the notion that only in death are we truly free of suffering? Put differently, some would say suffering is endemic to the human condition. As long as we're alive and conscious, we suffer. Short bursts of freedom from suffering are possible, as in cessation, but permanent relief is only available in death.

emoticon
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Oh Jeeze, I thought I was depressed. 
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Zachary, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
... Theravada is a "cosmic suicide club" as Kenneth Folk once said in an interview.

Was Kenneth referring to the cycle of rebirth and death, or was he referring to something different? Is it possible he was referring to the notion that only in death are we truly free of suffering? Put differently, some would say suffering is endemic to the human condition. As long as we're alive and conscious, we suffer. Short bursts of freedom from suffering are possible, as in cessation, but permanent relief is only available in death.



"Early Buddhism was a cosmic suicide club. Cure for dukkha is extinction. Surprised how few people know this. No experience, no dukkha."

Grabbed this from a thread on Kenneth's Twitter as I remember reading it recently. In the thread it looks like he's describing what Chris says above and challenging views of Nibanna that describe anything other than cessation. Some other good lines: 

"Most people, even Buddhists, think that nirvana is some kind of heaven. It isn't. It is nirodha. Cessation of experience"

"I mean that nirvana and oblivion both refer to the same phenomenon, with different spin. End of experience."

"We all want to be at our own funeral. Of course. Me too. But that's not nirvana. That's wishful thinking. emoticon"
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

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Grabbed this from a thread on Kenneth's Twitter as I remember reading it recently. In the thread it looks like he's describing what Chris says above and challenging views of Nibanna that describe anything other than cessation.

emoticon


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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
... Theravada is a "cosmic suicide club" as Kenneth Folk once said in an interview.

Was Kenneth referring to the cycle of rebirth and death, or was he referring to something different? Is it possible he was referring to the notion that only in death are we truly free of suffering? Put differently, some would say suffering is endemic to the human condition. As long as we're alive and conscious, we suffer. Short bursts of freedom from suffering are possible, as in cessation, but permanent relief is only available in death.

emoticon



   "Suffering" is not in my view a negative. It is basically the passive in the pairing, active/passive, yang and yin. We actively carry out our will, or we passively await events and allow things to happen at their own speed and unfold in their own way, without interference.

   Suffering is patience. Suffering is endurance. Yes, suffering is life. 

   Lets go back to sukkha (sweetness) and dukkha, unweetness. Dukkha is a reference to a gradient of perceived experience as we characterize it as pleasant or unpleasant. Suffering is actually how we handle experience, whether good or bad. The "pleasure principle" is inherent to all life, and the buddha suggests we observe positive, negative, and neutral as instrumental to the establishment of mindfulness.

   In the context of ending rebirth, the adept suffers good and bad equally. The establishment of universal suffering is the end of karma.

   (And you tyhought you were depressed before!)

terry
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terry, modified 3 Months ago.

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Jake Frankfurt Middenhall:
Yes, Theravada is a "cosmic suicide club" as Kenneth Folk once said in an interview. 
Mahayana clears the misconception, there is no "end of rebirh" (but there is end of karmic rebirth) All beings no matter what go thru the path until Buddhahood is reached.

every life ends in epiphany as sentient being returns to nonexistence...
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Ni Nurta:
Key point of Buddhadharma is ending cycle of rebirths and yet this notion is rarely discussed.

It kinda means that the main prize for spending many hours a day for years, go on retreats, etc. is to literally self destruct.

Opinions?

IMHO the term 'self destruct' tends to have negative cynical connotations, though what we're really talking about here is not really that, so it may not be the best word choice.

When someone says 'self-destruction', I think of various types of self-harming behaviors, like addiction, dangerous habits, etc. That's not really what we are talking about here.  Perhaps "self de-CON-struction" would be a better term (like Chris mentioned), simply because it doesn't hold the same connotations.

Now, it's clear to me that's not what you're talking about.  And personally I have thought in terms of self-destruction or ego-death as being a good thing.  But one should be cautious in using terms that could be confused for advocating self-harm of any sort, which is in fact the exact opposite of what this is about.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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Ellimination of experience of sense of self by its deconstruction is not the same as extinction of passions which cause rebirth. If that was so then 1st path was the last.

If you had a button which when pressed would immediately end your sensate experience without ending your apparent life (eg. for other people you would still exist like nothing has ever happened) and your experience would never ever return... would you press it?

Regardless if it is yes or no then reasons, thoughts, emotions, etc. should be noted and analyzed.

BTW. For anyone who was disturbed by this thought experiment here is the path to end any bad emotions: https://www.google.com/search?q=funny+cats&tbm=videmoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

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If you had a button which when pressed would immediately end your sensate experience without ending your apparent life (eg. for other people you would still exist like nothing has ever happened) and your experience would never ever return... would you press it?

This may be the most hypothetical question ever asked. Never-the-less, no, I would not press that button. I like being human, and I also think empathy and sympathy and many other connected-ness aspects of our existence are rooted in our feelings.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
If you had a button which when pressed would immediately end your sensate experience without ending your apparent life (eg. for other people you would still exist like nothing has ever happened) and your experience would never ever return... would you press it?

This may be the most hypothetical question ever asked. Never-the-less, no, I would not press that button. I like being human, and I also think empathy and sympathy and many other connected-ness aspects of our existence are rooted in our feelings.

You do you Chris

And as for me...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXS1sJm7QEA&t=43s
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

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Wait, what? Would you press that button, Ni Nurta? Why?
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Wait, what? Would you press that button, Ni Nurta? Why?

Beacause being conscious is painful? Hence Buddha teaching to enter Nibbana and never ever com back? 
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

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Consider me team Mahayana!
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

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emoticon Ha Ha emoticon I'm not yet sure on which team I'm on emoticon Can one sit on several chairs at once? 
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 3 Months ago.

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I don't think we get to choose, so you can probably sit wherever you want.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 3 Months ago.

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There is Always a choice emoticon in my opinion that is emoticon 
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Helen Pohl, modified 3 Months ago.

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I'm just glad I made it to the stadium in time for the game so to speak...

~fumbling with change at the hot dog stands~ emoticon
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Wait, what? Would you press that button, Ni Nurta? Why?
If we assume that things in nature always ballance itself out then it is safe to assume that if I make this button depressed then I won't be emoticon

What is the worst thing that could possibly happen when everything is impermanent?
Realization that it is so impermanent that it makes everything also permanent? emoticon
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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My guess is when you push the button in this TV show we're talking about, nothing happens.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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J W:
My guess is when you push the button in this TV show we're talking about, nothing happens.
It is in the definition of action for this button that for everyone else nothing changes.

Besides it is easier to develop technology, less easy to actually know how it works when it is exploiting external systems for which we typically only have some models which do not need to be perfect. For things made from ground up knowing all the technical details is easy. Predicting what actual effects, especially long term, tech will have on the world is always the hardest thing to do.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

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Ni Nurta:
Besides it is easier to develop technology, less easy to actually know how it works when it is exploiting external systems for which we typically only have some models which do not need to be perfect. For things made from ground up knowing all the technical details is easy. Predicting what actual effects, especially long term, tech will have on the world is always the hardest thing to do.

So if I am deciphering what you are saying correctly, essentially what you're saying is that we are only able to understand things based on our own perception and our own experience of that perception.  Glad we can be in agreement on that, if it is in fact what you are trying to say.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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No not really.
We can understand things 100% objectively eg. computers. We know every single bit of computer and why it is there because it was defined by humans. There is absolutely no mystery here.

If you were to use your perceptions and experience of perceptions then what would you know? Absolutely nothing. You push button here and there is beep there.

This is the issue with meditation and siddhis. From this kind of discovery to knowing how it works path is much longer than from discovering where you can put your mental fingers.

What I said we cannot predict is what effects introducing and using technology will have in long term. Even computers we could not predict will be used mostly for whatever they are used today, especially at the beginning when they just calculated numbers. When something is based on poorly understood models it is much harder because there might be side effects which our models did not include. Example would be pretty much every chemical compound we introduced.

This actually fits to this topic in a way. How did Buddha know that parinibbana will be good if he didn't experience it before? He only experienced nibbana because he always lived. Maybe getting what he considered liberation is actually causing experience of damnation?

These things are not obvious. Internal perceptions, especially regarding phenomena we cannot verify, are not very good scientific tool.
Add to this mount of mr Stupid of Dunning-Kruger Effect and you have recipe for disaster.
What I say here is that one should know own limitations and liminations of methods and of knowing certain things in general... and if one want some certainty in life then choose mathematics and computer sciences emoticon

ps. I am not joking in the last sentence. From what I noticed it is the people who do not have anything which gives them this experience of complete certainty as a reference will compulsively fit inherently unknowable phenomena and concepts in to realms of certainty and cloud their perception of reality with it. I see it in people who talk about dharma and am like "The funk is wrong with these people... :banging my head on the wall:"
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Chris Marti, modified 3 Months ago.

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 From what I noticed it is the people who do not have anything which gives them this experience of complete certainty as a reference will compulsively fit inherently unknowable phenomena and concepts in to realms of certainty and cloud their perception of reality with it.

I agree with this. Problem is, it probably won't change, This is human nature. To assume we know, to take refuge in it, to feign certainty and fool ourselves with that belief, to be limited in our understanding of the universe and how stuff actually works, but to forge ahead anyway. It's not pretty and it's a white knuckle ride into the future. "Don't know" would be a great way to go through life. But pretty much no one does it, even mediation practitioners.
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Ni Nurta, modified 3 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:

I agree with this. Problem is, it probably won't change, This is human nature. To assume we know, to take refuge in it, to feign certainty and fool ourselves with that belief, to be limited in our understanding of the universe and how stuff actually works, but to forge ahead anyway. It's not pretty and it's a white knuckle ride into the future. "Don't know" would be a great way to go through life. But pretty much no one does it, even mediation practitioners.

People use "don't know" to go through life quite often, at least in areas they choose to ignore.
They will react with negativity if you try to explain other point(s) of view than they hold and not knowing is one of such point of view.

One should be comfortable with having multiple ideas at the same time and if that is the case then it is possible do cognition using synthesis instead of ellimination and reduction. It is this compulsion to have one simple model that causes people to even cling to not knowing or any single model. Also to not be able to acknowledge they actually do not know how it works because if they need to have one model then they either know totally or do not know totally. It is more complicated and ways to deal with these issues are at least two from the top of my head: - - split topic into smaller separate topics - typical way. Synthesis doesn't arise naturally using it and it itself is not always applicable, especially for ideas which are completely opposite
- learn how to have multiple consciousnesses at the same time - this is more meditative approach. Perfecting it takes a lot of time but it allow cognizing rather complex abstract topics using synthesis. Even with partial knowledge and/or if these topics are completely opposite. Cow can be black and white at the same time and even not really known and there is no conflicts whatsoever because new ideas can be thrown without ever needing to reduce/simplify anything... except maybe when writing it down for other people.
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

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Ni Nurta:

We can understand things 100% objectively eg. computers. We know every single bit of computer and why it is there because it was defined by humans. There is absolutely no mystery here.

If you were to use your perceptions and experience of perceptions then what would you know? Absolutely nothing. You push button here and there is beep there.

This is the issue with meditation and siddhis. From this kind of discovery to knowing how it works path is much longer than from discovering where you can put your mental fingers.

What I said we cannot predict is what effects introducing and using technology will have in long term. Even computers we could not predict will be used mostly for whatever they are used today, especially at the beginning when they just calculated numbers. When something is based on poorly understood models it is much harder because there might be side effects which our models did not include. Example would be pretty much every chemical compound we introduced.

This actually fits to this topic in a way. How did Buddha know that parinibbana will be good if he didn't experience it before? He only experienced nibbana because he always lived. Maybe getting what he considered liberation is actually causing experience of damnation?

These things are not obvious. Internal perceptions, especially regarding phenomena we cannot verify, are not very good scientific tool.
Add to this mount of mr Stupid of Dunning-Kruger Effect and you have recipe for disaster.
What I say here is that one should know own limitations and liminations of methods and of knowing certain things in general... and if one want some certainty in life then choose mathematics and computer sciences emoticon

ps. I am not joking in the last sentence. From what I noticed it is the people who do not have anything which gives them this experience of complete certainty as a reference will compulsively fit inherently unknowable phenomena and concepts in to realms of certainty and cloud their perception of reality with it. I see it in people who talk about dharma and am like "The funk is wrong with these people... :banging my head on the wall:"
I think I see generally what you are saying, in some ways I do agree. In some ways, I don't think it's painting the full picture.  I don't know that we can understand ANYTHING with 100% objectivity.  To take your example of computers, do we really understand everything at the quantum level?  Can we as humans know the ins and outs of every single atom, of every single subatomic particle, that makes up a microscopic CPU part?

Even if we could somehow know all of this, we will always be limited by our own perception.  How do we come to know these things, how do we come to know anything? Through mental formations, through observation, through the sense doors, all of which occurs from within our own mind and all of which are dependent upon clinging.  I really don't see a way around that.

By the way... I am a programmer, I have a degree in computer science. And there's plenty of uncertainty in my life, whether I am sitting behind a computer screen or not. And I don't view that as a bad thing emoticon
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J W, modified 3 Months ago.

RE: No more respawns

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Ni Nurta:

If you had a button which when pressed would immediately end your sensate experience without ending your apparent life (eg. for other people you would still exist like nothing has ever happened) and your experience would never ever return... would you press it?

My answer to this would be that I don't know what I would do in this hypothetical situation. In any case, I'm not sure how it's relevant to what we're talking about.

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