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Right View and Conventional Truth - Dhamma Wheel

Right View and Conventional Truth

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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retrofuturist
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Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:19 am

Greetings,

In pursuing the Dhamma, it has become increasingly apparent that there is a disconnect between Right View and Conventional Truth.

According to Conventional Truth, by some objective measure, it might be accurate for me to think either, "I am better than Mr. X", "I am worse than Mr. X", or "I am equal to Mr. X".... but in terms of Right View they are all wrong, because they are all expressions of mana (conceit).

According to Conventional Truth a spider has eight legs. It would be inaccurate for me to say it has ten legs if I sincerely (but falsely) thought it to be so, but it would be neither Right View, nor Wrong View, because the number of legs a spider possesses is independent of the matters pertaining to the Four Noble Truths.

Do you agree or disagree with the above? If you agree, and have more examples that might help us more clearly differentiate between Right View and Conventional Truth, it would be of interest.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Last edited by retrofuturist on Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Updated to make the wording of the spider example more closely align with the intent
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Kim OHara
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Kim OHara » Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:50 am

Hi, Retro,
An interesting spin-off from the Secular Buddhism thread (if that's what it is - it certainly ties in with the scientific truth vs dhamma aspect of that thread).

Can I say, though, that any statement about the number of legs a spider possesses does pertain to the 4NT?
How?
The fourth NT is the 8FP, Right Speech is one strand of the 8FP, and Right Speech includes speaking truth at all times ... as I understand it, anyway.

You could probably say that holding an incorrect belief about a factual matter like the number of legs per spider does not contravene Right View, but expressing it does ... but that's a bit devious for a try-to-keep-it-simple person like me. :tongue:

:namaste:
Kim

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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby acinteyyo » Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:53 am

Hi retro,

I think I have difficulties in getting the point you're trying to make.
I consider right view being knowledge with regard to the four noble truths. (DN22 "And what is right view? Knowledge with regard to stress, knowledge with regard to the origination of stress, knowledge with regard to the cessation of stress, knowledge with regard to the way of practice leading to the cessation of stress: This is called right view.) So by definition, I would say that it certainly has not much to do with conventional truths. There may be something in common here and there, but the four noble truths deal with immediate experience of suffering, origin, cessation and so on exclusively while conventional truths deal with conventions and concepts which in the majority of cases are abstractions of immediate experience. Everything beyond suffering has not much to do with right view, imho.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:43 pm

Last edited by Cittasanto on Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:56 am, edited 2 times in total.


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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minh-khong
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby minh-khong » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:06 pm

I'm for right view is a view free from "5 clusters of clinging: form, feeling, perception, mental construction, and consciousness" as in this post from Bhikkhu Samahita - viewtopic.php?f=13&t=110&start=1040

MK

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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby DarwidHalim » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:13 pm

Is your right view here equivalent to ultimate truth?
I am not here nor there.
I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
I am not in samsara nor nirvana.
To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!

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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:39 pm


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kirk5a
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby kirk5a » Fri Feb 24, 2012 3:27 pm

"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Viscid » Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:16 pm

The gap between 'Right View' and 'Conventional Truths' is also apparent when an Arahant speaks of himself-- he'll use words like 'I' and 'mine,' even though he may be beyond the self-conceit. 'Conventional Truths,' I imagine, become 'Convenient Truths' when one has real right view: ideas which are useful for socialization and instruction.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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ground
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby ground » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:10 pm


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ground
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby ground » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:18 pm

Right view without effluents which is transcendent permeates each an every conventional truth.

So I wonder where the "disconnect" arises from ...

Kind regards

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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Viscid » Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:08 pm

Last edited by Viscid on Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Alex123
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Alex123 » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:25 pm

"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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retrofuturist
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:05 am

Greetings,

Regarding the Right Speech thing a couple of members have posted about, if I falsely believed a spider had 10 legs, it would not be lying to say it had 10 legs. The act of lying requires intention to tell a falsehood.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Cittasanto
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:13 am



He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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retrofuturist
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:15 am

Greetings,

Good point. I guess I thought it and forgot to write it.

I'll correct the OP to prevent subsequent confusion.

Thanks everyone.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Cittasanto
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:30 am



He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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Kim OHara
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby Kim OHara » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:08 am


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retrofuturist
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:11 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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ground
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Re: Right View and Conventional Truth

Postby ground » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:22 am

There are conscious perceptions, conscious feelings, volitional formations causing will to arise and forms. And there are communicative expressions of these corresponding to a convention of acoustical and optical signs acquired through learning. This is the dependent origination of conventional truths.


Kind regards


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