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Dhamma and causality - Dhamma Wheel

Dhamma and causality

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
JackV
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Dhamma and causality

Postby JackV » Sun Feb 05, 2012 1:40 pm

Through the course of my practice it is becoming clearer to me how thoughts and ideas arise, the relationship of cause and effect.

I am curious from seeing this in practice (as basic as the understanding I have is) as to what the position of free will is?

Also If all things arise because of their causes which we inevitably follow round and around without being able to alter our path (when ignorant of causes) what does this make the Dhamma? It seems like the Dhamma (and I suppose specifically Sati) is like something outside of this cycle - bolt cutters to break the chains and their links (I know this isn't the most apt simile but I hope you understand my point)

So is there free will? How does this affect the view or place of Viriya as well.

Apologies for the very unspecific and general way in which I have asked this question but I am having some problems verbalising it properly or formulating it clearly in my head :/
Here where a thousand
captains swore grand conquest
Tall grasses their monument.

chownah
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby chownah » Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:40 pm

Consider that if we discuss free will then we must decide what it is that has freedom to do the willing....is it your "self"?
chownah

JackV
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby JackV » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:29 pm

Here where a thousand
captains swore grand conquest
Tall grasses their monument.

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Alex123
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Alex123 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 5:30 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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mikenz66
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 7:31 pm


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retrofuturist
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:28 pm

:goodpost:

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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Sam Vara
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Sam Vara » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:31 pm

Hi JackV,

You ask an extremely important point. If it is conceded or understood that there is no Atta (or self, or substance, or uncaused element which can cause other things to happen) then what is the status of cetana, or intention?

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Alex123
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Alex123 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:24 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: Dhamma and causality

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:30 pm

"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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Alex123
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Alex123 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:44 pm

Greeting Retro,

Just because one can have tendency to feel "I am" and "mine" until Arhatship, it doesn't mean that the will is really "mine". It is delusion that it is mine.



With best wishes,

Alex
"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: Dhamma and causality

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:55 pm

"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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Alex123
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Alex123 » Mon Feb 06, 2012 12:46 am

"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: Dhamma and causality

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Feb 06, 2012 1:12 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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contemplans
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby contemplans » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:21 pm

JackV,
Free will is the beginning of the path, in the sense that you are the owner of your actions, heir to your actions. You craft your experience. So the path is your effort. You need to make an effort and apply your desire to be free from stress and suffering. While you're creating karma, you are also creating an identity. The path is about making that more skillful on both ends. The two are very much intertwined. Once you reach a level of dropping karma, the self drops.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:43 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.

JackV
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby JackV » Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:25 pm

Here where a thousand
captains swore grand conquest
Tall grasses their monument.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:33 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.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:33 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.

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reflection
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby reflection » Thu Feb 09, 2012 12:12 am

As said, free will exists... namely will free of a self.. :tongue:

If there is no-self, it's a bit of a silly question to ask if you have the freedom to choose. You are just a soup of 5 aggregates, body, feeling, perception, volition, consciousness. The will can be seen as part of the volitions. Therefore you have no will, but you are party will.

At times it may be quite clear that we have no freedom of choice, often we don't even have the power to stop your mind from thinking... See deep and you may see will comes after an action. You do/think something and then afterwards the will kicks in claiming it was voluntary.. which it wasn't.

I personally like this simile:
http://media.bswa.org/documents/Brahm60.pdf
Page 39. (for some reason I can't copy/paste it here)

Freedom from will is better than 'free of will'. It's very peaceful to let yourself be taken by the river of life. Also, it makes forgiving yourself and others much more easy.

However, fully embracing this is not so easy, so maybe don't bend your mind too much over this, you may go crazy. :rolleye: When I once asked a monk, he replied by saying something in the lines of "it does not matter whether there is free will or not, as long as you practice".

With metta,
Reflection

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contemplans
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Re: Dhamma and causality

Postby contemplans » Thu Feb 09, 2012 12:30 am



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