YOU CANNOT POST. OUR WEB HOSTING COMPANY DECIDED TO MOVE THE SERVER TO ANOTHER LOCATION. IN THE MEANTIME, YOU CAN VIEW THIS VERSION WHICH DOES NOT ALLOW POSTING AND WILL NOT SAVE ANYTHING YOU DO ONCE THE OTHER SERVER GOES ONLINE.

Modern Theravada description - Dhamma Wheel

Modern Theravada description

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
Posts: 10648
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Contact:

Modern Theravada description

Postby David N. Snyder » Wed Dec 31, 2008 4:16 pm

The following was originally described by a user at e-sangha and then modified by me at e-sangha and also in:
http://www.theravadabuddhism.org/


This “progressive” form of Buddhism and Theravada is sometimes known as “progressive Theravada” or “Modern Theravada.” But according to Modern Theravadins, there is nothing that is really “modern” or reformist about these views. According to Modern Theravadins, these views come directly from the Pali Canon and the teachings of Buddha.

The Classical Mahavihara Theravada takes a little more literalist view and highly values the commentaries and can be seen as playing a vital role in the preservation of the Dhamma, regardless if you are a Modern Theravadin or not. The Classical Theravada allows for fewer or no new "re-interpretations" which may be best for preserving the Dhamma in a pluralistic society where some teachings can get watered down. We are all learning and both the Classical and Modern Theravada are valued.


1. There is an equal importance to the practices of meditation, sutta study, discussion, and devotional practices. But there is especially an emphasis on meditation and sutta study over rites, rituals, and ceremonies.

2. Men and women can practice together in a monastic environment.

3. The Dhamma can be taught in English or other language of the local community.

4. An international electronic sangha can exist.

5. All Buddhist traditions are not only vehicles toward complete perfect enlightenment but that they can teach each other.

6. Lay persons can not only teach other lay persons but can teach monks as well.

7. Women can teach men . . . and monks.

8. Women can become fully ordained bhikkhunis (nuns), if they so choose.

9. One can interpret the planes of existence as physical places or as mental states and neither view precludes one from being called a Buddhist.

10. A tendency to move toward vegetarianism and concern for the environment. Modern Theravadins would most likely be vegetarian or at least mostly vegetarian.


Notes/sources for above:

There are several suttas that provide support for the above, but listed below are some examples for each point above:

1. “It is bhikkhus, because he has developed and cultivated one faculty that a bhikkhu who has destroyed the taints declares final knowledge thus. What is that one faculty? The faculty of wisdom.” Samyutta Nikaya 48

“And which are the five lower fetters? Self-identity views; uncertainty; attachment to rites, rituals, and ceremonies; sensual desire; and ill will.” Anguttara Nikaya 10.13

2. In the modern world, there may not be enough centers to provide for gender segregation of monastic communities, especially in countries that are predominantly non-Buddhist. This is in keeping with the Buddha’s wish for the Dhamma to be spread far and wide:

“Wander forth, O bhikkhus, for the welfare of the multitude, for the happiness of the multitude, out of compassion for the world, for the good, welfare, and happiness of devas and humans. Let not two go the same way. Teach, O bhikkhus, the Dhamma that is good in the beginning, good in the middle, good in the end, with the right meaning and phrasing.” Samyutta Nikaya 4.453

3. “I allow you, O Bhikkhus, to learn the word of the Buddhas each in his own dialect.” Cullavaga, Vinaya

4. Also in keeping with spreading of the Dhamma, as number 2 above, Samyutta Nikaya 4.453

5. “Another person has practiced the making of merit by giving as well as by moral discipline to a high degree; but he has not undertaken the making of merit by meditation. With the breakup of the body, after death, he will be reborn among humans in a favorable condition. Or he will be reborn in the company of the devas of the Four Great Kings.” Anguttara Nikaya 4.241-243

6. “But he who lives purely and self assured, in quietness and virtue, who is without harm or hurt or blame, even if he wears fine clothes, so long as he also has faith, he is a true seeker.” Dhammapada, chapter 10, verse 142

“There is no fetter bound by which Citta the householder could return to this world.” Samyutta Nikaya 41.9 (Citta was a non-returner and a lay man)

“I say there is no difference between a lay follower who is liberated in mind and a bhikkhu who has been liberated in mind, that is, between one liberation and the other.”
Samyutta Nikaya 55.54

7. “The bhikkhuni Dhammadina is wise, Visakha, the bhikkhuni Dhammadina has great wisdom. If you had asked me the meaning of this, I would have explained it to you in the same way that the bhikkhuni Dhammadina has explained it. Such is its meaning and you should remember it.”
Majjhima Nikaya 44.31 (On the occasion of bhikkhuni Dhammadina giving a Dhamma talk to a man with the Buddha listening.)

8. “I will not take final Nibbana till I have nuns and female disciples who are accomplished, till I have laymen and laywomen followers who are accomplished.”
Digha Nikaya 16.3.8

9. Mara’s three offspring are named Lobha, Dosa and Moha, meaning Greed, Hatred and Delusion (mental states). Samyutta Nikaya 1 Mara-samyutta

10. “Monks, a lay follower should not engage in five types of business. Which five? Business in weapons, business in human beings, business in meat, business in intoxicants, and business in poison.” Anguttara Nikaya 5.177

“He should not kill a living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should he incite another to kill. Do not injure any being, either strong or weak, in the world.”
Khuddaka Nikaya, Sutta Nipata, Dhammika Sutta
Image




User avatar
Will
Posts: 709
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby Will » Wed Dec 31, 2008 4:38 pm

So aside from #9 re: planes as mental states, there are no other doctrinal differences between modern & classical?

Also I thought the suttas made clear that the jhanas (mental conditions) are doorways to the deva realms? So why would the classical think a meditative, mental doorway would lead to a physical place?
A bodhisattva does not become weary of evil beings nor does he commit the error of bringing forth thoughts inclined to reject them and cast them aside. Avatamsaka Sutra, ch. 25

User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
Posts: 10648
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Contact:

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby David N. Snyder » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:03 pm

Image




User avatar
Cittasanto
Posts: 6524
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:31 pm
Location: Ellan Vannin
Contact:

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:26 pm



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.

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 17855
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jan 01, 2009 12:25 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

User avatar
Will
Posts: 709
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby Will » Thu Jan 01, 2009 12:49 am

A bodhisattva does not become weary of evil beings nor does he commit the error of bringing forth thoughts inclined to reject them and cast them aside. Avatamsaka Sutra, ch. 25

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 17855
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jan 01, 2009 12:55 am

Greetings Will,

The Pali term for "skilful means" is upāyakosallasampatti

According to Bhikkhu Pesala, it means..

“Skilful means” is the genius that is equal to the task whenever he undertakes to help others. Literally, it is the “attainment of special aptitude in strategy.” (source: http://www.aimwell.org/Books/Ledi/Uttam ... tions.html)

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

User avatar
Will
Posts: 709
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby Will » Thu Jan 01, 2009 2:27 am

Thanks retro and even more grateful am I for that link to the Ledi Sayadaw book, which gives the bodhisatta ideal as found in the Theravada.
A bodhisattva does not become weary of evil beings nor does he commit the error of bringing forth thoughts inclined to reject them and cast them aside. Avatamsaka Sutra, ch. 25

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 17855
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:07 am

Greetings Will,

I'm pretty sure Ben is a fan of that book, so I'm sure he'll be happy to discuss it in the thread I see you've created for it in the Classical section.

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

User avatar
Cittasanto
Posts: 6524
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:31 pm
Location: Ellan Vannin
Contact:

Re: Modern Theravada description

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:38 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.


Return to “General Theravāda discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 66 guests

Google Saffron, Theravada Search Engine