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Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings? - Dhamma Wheel

Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
starter
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Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby starter » Sat Mar 19, 2011 5:08 pm

Hello Teachers /Friends,

As I understand, Ajahn Maha Boowa indicates that the kilesas have been destroyed and are never seen again in an Arahant, whereas Luangphor Chah seems to say that the enlightened one still has the kilesas but does not buy into them anymore [the kilesas and the (enlightened) mind coexist but the (enlightened) mind is not affected by the kilesas].

Now let’s look at the Buddha’s teaching:

The Arahant

A monk who is a Worthy One, devoid of mental defilements — who has attained completion, finished the task, laid down the burden, attained the true goal, destroyed the fetters of becoming, and is released through right [true] knowledge — directly knows earth as earth. Directly knowing earth as earth, he does not conceive earth, does not conceive in earth, does not conceive apart from earth, does not conceive earth as 'mine,' does not delight in earth. Why is that? Because he has comprehended it, I tell you.

He directly knows water as water... the All as the All...

He directly knows unbinding as Unbinding. Directly knowing Unbinding as Unbinding, he does not conceive Unbinding, does not conceive in Unbinding, does not conceive apart from Unbinding, does not conceive Unbinding as 'mine,' does not delight in Unbinding. Why is that? Because, with the ending of delusion, he is devoid of delusion, I tell you.

-- MN 1

As I understand from the Buddha’s teaching, an arahant should not have delights (emotional feelings) and cravings, which are caused by delusion [of “self”]. The presence of delights and cravings appears to be the indication of not-yet ended delusion, and a mind with the presence of such delusion seems to be not yet totally freed from all incoming defilements?

Then is the practice of stopping proliferations/fabrications at Craving [instead of stopping at Contact, the sense door] the right way to nibbana?

“You have to train your mind to be quicker than your desire. When you want something, you should say “No, it is not good for me.” If you could do this, it means you have insight. … You have to contemplate on the three characteristics all the time. … until it becomes second nature. Then you don’t have to contemplate any more because when you want something you will say “I shouldn’t have it. It’s not good for me.” You have become enlightened.
You no longer want anything. You can live alone and be happy. All you need are the four requisites of food, clothing, shelter and medicine,to take care of your body. You don’t need other things because you have something better inside yourself: calmness, peace of mind, which arises from insight, by letting go of your detachment. If you are truly detached, you will feel liberated, no longer affected by what happens. You are not emotionally involved. You know what’s going on. Know that’s the way it is.” ["Path to Enlightenment” by Ajahn Suchart available at http://www.waht-buddha-taught.net].

Is such stopping at cravings and subsequent emotional peacefulness the ultimate enlightenment?

Metta to all,

Starter
Last edited by starter on Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:08 am, edited 6 times in total.

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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:11 pm


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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby starter » Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:34 pm

As I remember, it's not a talk directly given by Ajahn Chah, but a story told by his disciple in the following dhamma talk:

http://www.watmarpjan.org/en/en-book-cds.html

The unbounded mind: #14 Putting faith in the kruba ajahns or the suttas.

I tried to copy it here but couldn't.

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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby chownah » Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:16 am

Arahants don't "have" anything.
chownah

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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby unspoken » Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:15 am


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Ben
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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby Ben » Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:36 am

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby unspoken » Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:20 am


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daverupa
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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby daverupa » Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:31 am

Perhaps this is too simplistic, but let's try this on for size:

Nibbana immunizes against mental darts, and ensures that physical darts cannot metastasize into mental darts.

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Ben
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Re: Do arahants still have delights and cravings?

Postby Ben » Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:37 am

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

starter
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and cravings?

Postby starter » Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:59 pm


starter
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and cravings?

Postby starter » Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:14 pm

Just heard a talk mentioning a method of ending suffering: accept life as it is ("This is the way life is") -- by realizing that it's due to our resistance to the way of life as it is that we create suffering for ourselves through desiring something we don't have or through desiring to get rid of something we do have but don't like. By not creating such desires we end our suffering.

I'm afraid such an approach can never get one out of samsara, because one accepts life (samsara) as it is without cleansing the defilements (as I understand). But this is an early talk around 2001, and it was probably only about the teacher's early experience of practice. Metta!
Last edited by starter on Mon May 02, 2011 11:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Kenshou
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and cravings?

Postby Kenshou » Sun Mar 20, 2011 6:07 pm

"Ultimate true knowledge"?

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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and cravings?

Postby starter » Tue Mar 22, 2011 2:39 pm


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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and cravings?

Postby starter » Fri Apr 01, 2011 3:21 pm

Hm ... I'm now convinced that arahants should have no delights/sorrows, let alone longings (e.g. for a certain posture to pass away), since he is "indifferent towards all conditions", doesn't identify with and has no attachments to anything in the world.

The Buddha's teachings on Purity [http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/ireland/wheel082.html#s12]:

"The (true) brahmana [the Buddha] has said one is not purified by another, nor by what is seen, heard or perceived, nor, by the performance of ritual observances. He (the true brahmana) is not defiled by merit or demerit. Having given up what he had (previously) grasped at, he no longer engages in producing (any kamma). ...

"A person having undertaken a ritual act goes this way and that, fettered by his senses. But one with a wide wisdom, having understood and gone into the Dhamma with his experience, does not go this way and that. For a person indifferent towards all conditions, whatever is seen, heard or cognized, he is one who sees it as it really is and lives with clarity (of mind). With what could he be identified in the world?

"They do not speculate nor pursue, they do not claim perfect purity. Loosening the knot (of clinging) with which they are bound, they do not have longing anywhere in the world. The (true) brahmana who has gone beyond limitations, having understood and seen there is no longer any assumption for him, he is neither disturbed by lust nor agitated by revulsion [which doesn't mean he still has lust/revision but doesn't buy them]. For him there is nothing upheld as 'the highest.'"

— vv. 788-795

Metta to all,

Starter

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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby Digity » Sat Apr 02, 2011 5:18 am


starter
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby starter » Sat Apr 02, 2011 5:16 pm

To my understanding, the arahants still have logical preferences but not emotional delight/sorrow.

Just to share with you some more teachings of the Buddha:

"Dry out that which is past, let there be nothing for you in the future. If you do not grasp at anything in the present you will go about at peace. One who, in regard to this entire mindbody complex, has no cherishing of it as 'mine,' and who does not grieve for what is non-existent truly suffers no loss in the world. For him there is no thought of anything as 'this is mine' or 'this is another's'; not finding any state of ownership, and realizing, 'nothing is mine,' he does not grieve.

"To be not callous, not greedy, at rest and unruffled by circumstances — that is the profitable result I proclaim when asked about one who does not waver. For one who does not crave, who has understanding, there is no production (of new kamma). Refraining from initiating (new kamma) he sees security everywhere. A sage does not speak in terms of being equal, lower or higher. Calmed and without selfishness he neither grasps nor rejects."

— vv. 935-954

"With the arrow withdrawn, unattached, he would attain to peace of mind; and when all sorrow has been transcended he is sorrow-free and has realized Nibbana."

— vv. 574-593

"He who has comprehended in the world the here and the beyond, in whom there is no perturbation by anything in the world, who is calm, free from the smoldering fires, untroubled and desireless — he has crossed beyond birth and decay, I say."

— vv. 1043-1048

"Whatever you clearly comprehend, Mettagu, above, below, across and in between, get rid of delight in it. Rid yourself of habitual attitudes [fixed views] and (karma producing) consciousness. Do not continue in existence. Living thus, mindful and vigilant, a bhikkhu who has forsaken selfish attachments may, by understanding, abandon suffering, birth and old age, sorrow and grief, even here in this life."

— vv. 1049-1060

"Whatever streams are in the world, it is mindfulness that obstructs them and restricts them, and by wisdom they are cut off."

— vv. 1032-1039

Metta to all,

Starter

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mikenz66
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Apr 02, 2011 9:03 pm

Just a clarification that Starter's references above are to Sutta Nipata verses:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... index.html
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... 2.html#s12

["vv" is just short for verses and doesn't tell us where the verses are from...]

There is extensive discussion of some of those Snp verses in the Study Group, and Bhikkhu Nananada makes frequent references to them in his Nibbana Sermons.
E.g.: viewtopic.php?f=25&t=6481#p102993

:anjali:
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby Euclid » Mon Apr 04, 2011 12:37 pm

The is relevant to the topic. Quite an interesting read

starter
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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby starter » Thu May 12, 2011 7:11 pm

Hi thanks for all your input. I happened to read the following in MN 22:

Both formerly and now, monks, I declare only suffering and the cessation of suffering. And if others insult, abuse, taunt, bother, & harass the Tathagata for that, he feels no hatred, no resentment, no dissatisfaction of heart because of that. And if others honor, respect, revere, & venerate the Tathagata for that, he feels no joy, no happiness, no elation of heart because of that.

-- It appears that the arahants have no [emotional] dissatisfaction/discontent or [emotional] satisfaction/joy/happiness ...

Metta to all,

Starter

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Re: Do arahants still have delights/sorrows and longings?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu May 12, 2011 8:51 pm



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