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On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings - Dhamma Wheel

On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
danieLion
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On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby danieLion » Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:09 am


danieLion
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Re: soul, do you have any?

Postby danieLion » Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:11 am


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ancientbuddhism
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soul, do you have any?

Postby ancientbuddhism » Sat Jan 07, 2012 3:41 am

I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854

Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)


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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Jan 07, 2012 4:22 am

Here is an old discussion which might clarify what the issues are:

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... t=0#p12365

:anjali:
Mike

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ancientbuddhism
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby ancientbuddhism » Sat Jan 07, 2012 5:53 am

Some academic background on the problem of scholarly interpretation of the place of Buddhism in Vedic culture, and the Buddha's understanding of vedic texts, is mentioned on dharmawheel .
I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854

Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)


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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby manas » Sat Jan 07, 2012 8:39 am

Then the Blessed One, picking up a tiny bit of dust with the tip of his fingernail, said to the monk, "There isn't even this much form...feeling...
perception...fabrications...consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity."

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contemplans
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby contemplans » Sat Jan 07, 2012 3:19 pm

He says quite plainly "don't ask". On his anatta retreat in 2009 he was pressed by a few of the participants "who is my real self", and he said that it is a worthless inquiry, and that you get tangled up in debates etc. So to suggest that he doesn't support the Buddhist teaching is not founded. I am not trying to place my views on him. I am, however, impressed by his balance and lack of fear. Common sense says we have a separate self, as stated in the Tricycle article "... the teaching on egolessness posits a fundamental error of perception: that despite our sense of a lasting, separate self, no such self really exists." How do we go beyond this common sense? Dropping self all together is just unhealthy, and I truly doubt anyone who does this has any substantial progress in insight. While Christians can be accused of grasping too hard at the self, Buddhists can be accused of letting go too quickly. And his article hits the nail on the head. If we were to place Western society in two camps of extremes, we have the prideful and the nihilistic. Try the case of John Lennon who went through Tim Leary's ego-death rituals. Now granted that the whole thing is drug related, and Tim Leary is no Buddhist sage. But John Lennon said it was one of the most destructive periods of his life. Our sick society has way too much baggage to be playing around like this. Think about all the unskillful behavior out there, and we say to those people to drop the ego. There is a lot of self-hatred in our society (not conscious, of course, for many), and our societies in general can be classified as on an auto-destructive path. This is why I support Thanissaro Bhikkhu's view. Not to somehow wrangle people into believing my strict position, but because he is countering a unique piece of baggage from our society that people bring to the practice. The only thing I would add to his thoughts are that we actually have these ideas native to us. Westerners are dysfunctional because they've all but dropped their own spiritual traditions, or perverted them so much that they are shadows of their former selves, literally. Just talk to the average Christian about their practice, and it is very ephemeral. I am not attempting to judge, just reading what I am seeing. The basic core of not-self is that as you ascend the ladder, you let go of one rung for another. You only let go of the ladder when you reach the top. If you refuse to hang on to the rungs of the ladder, or to climb, you're going nowhere. The ladder is the path. The rungs are the skills in development. You are the one ascending. Once you get to the top, the job is done, and there is no need to attend to a "you". Dropping that sense before the goal is spiritual suicide. But as you ascend, you focus more on the ladder, and not the self, and really the job at the end is not an ego battle, but just as simply as releasing from the ladder.

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DarwidHalim
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby DarwidHalim » Sat Jan 07, 2012 5:11 pm

........The ladder is the path. The rungs are the skills in development. You are the one ascending. Once you get to the top, the job is done, and there is no need to attend to a "you". Dropping that sense before the goal is spiritual suicide. But as you ascend, you focus more on the ladder, and not the self, and really the job at the end is not an ego battle, but just as simply as releasing from the ladder.........

I have to say you are right.

EveryOne has his own pace of learning.

The notion of no self indeed can be dangerous when that person is not ready.

I think this is why Buddha himself never say about the notion of no self in first dharma wheel turning. It comes at the later stage.
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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ancientbuddhism
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby ancientbuddhism » Sat Jan 07, 2012 6:11 pm

Last edited by ancientbuddhism on Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854

Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)


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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby Nyana » Sat Jan 07, 2012 7:20 pm


chownah
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby chownah » Sun Jan 08, 2012 2:01 am

I think that the Buddha taught that it is best to have no doctrine of self whatever.....to whatever extent you develop a concept of self you are not taking his advise......I guess....
chownah

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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby Buckwheat » Sun Jan 08, 2012 8:45 am

Two point from one of Ajahn's recorded dhamma talks: 1) the view of no self is rooted in the very view of self, a denial of self, a destruction of self - I will see if I can find that talk so that I can elaborate 2) once you see the deathless, who cares if there is a self experiencing it or not?
Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.

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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby Zom » Sun Jan 08, 2012 8:53 am


Buckwheat
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby Buckwheat » Sun Jan 08, 2012 9:31 am

"How do I eliminate suffering?" It requires us to see the stories we tell about our selves, such as, "I am such and such and I deserve... I hurt... I have... I need... I want... I am... I was screwed... etc." Dropping those stories is what leads to liberation, although it must be in the right order so as to prevent decent into vice or madness. One wouldn't want to drop sense of moral responsibility until after you drop greed, anger, and delusion. This seems to me the main point of Thanissaro Bhikkhu's approach.

In all honesty, it's the only version of anatta that makes sense to me at this point in my practice. Maybe after I drop enough stories, no-self will come into focus. But for now, it just doesn't seem to be the thing that will lead me away from suffering. It only leads me to confusion and searching/clinging. The Not-Self Strategy approach gives me something to work with right now to develop long term welfare and happiness, and that's good enough for me at this point in my practice.
Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.

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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby Nyana » Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:02 am


danieLion
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby danieLion » Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:29 am


danieLion
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby danieLion » Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:29 am


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ancientbuddhism
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby ancientbuddhism » Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:14 pm

I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854

Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)


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ancientbuddhism
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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby ancientbuddhism » Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:17 pm

I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854

Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)


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Re: On Thanissaro Bhikkhu's anatta teachings

Postby Buckwheat » Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:56 pm

Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.


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