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Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana? - Dhamma Wheel

Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Cittasanto
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Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:27 pm

as it says on the tin, "Is critical thinking active vipassana?


it seams to me that it is, but I would like to have your thoughts on this.

I would say it is because it is the application of right effort inwardly to oneself (as described in the video at-least). A looking for the flaws in ones own thoughts, and the philosophies of another (at-least to see if they aim toward the correct place).

Edit -
By Active I am refering to reflective practices within day-to-day activities, reflecting on an action and its motivations/intentions (were they skillful...), or studying a topic such as Kamma (is this understaning coherent...).

PLEASE Watch the video, as the definition for this thread is there.
Last edited by Cittasanto on Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:06 pm, 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.

twelph
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby twelph » Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:11 am


danieLion
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby danieLion » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:23 am

This a great question and one I've been contemplating for a while now. If you take the definition of crtitical thinking in this video and compare it to the way Rev. Thanissaro, e.g., narrates the Buddha's "method of discovery," then I think you have good parallels to yoniso manisikara (and dhamma vicaya), especially as he describes the Buddha's process in the book Skill In Questions and in essays like " One Tool Among Many: The Place of Vipassana in Buddhist Practice".

And if we look at Albert Elllis' work, e.g., whose Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT) parallels crtical thinking, the particular aspects of the tilakkhana start popping out. For instance, anicca and dukkha are "covered" in his writings like the chapter in A Guide To Rational Living titled, "Accepting and Coping with the Grim Facts of Life." Anatta, for example, is "covered" in his writings like the chapter in The Road to Tolerance: The Philosophy of REBT titled, "REBT Diminishes Much of the Human Ego." To be fair, there's a chapter in that same book on Zen Buddhism & REBT in which he makes the common mistake of interpreting the Buddha as teaching that life is suffering rather than his actual teaching that here is suffering life. He also critizes "desireleness" there, but I don't think was aware of the distintction in Buddhism betweeen skillfull and unskillful desire. He also criticized Henepola Gunaratana's The Path of Serenity & Insight, but I forget where and what they were specifically. Furthermore, his book, Anger: How to Live With and Without It has helped me tremendously in the Rooting-Out-Hate department. And when you read transcriptions of Thanissaro's talks in his Meditations series like "The Story-telling Mind," "The Path of Mistakes," "Not What You Are, What You Do," "Little Things," "Your Inner Mob," "Inner Voice Lessons," etc..., you have to strongly suspect the Reverend knows a thing or two about REBT and CBT and has incorportated them into his teachings.

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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby danieLion » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:24 am


twelph
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby twelph » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:02 am


danieLion
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby danieLion » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:22 am


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Ben
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Ben » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:24 am

Hi Cittasanto,

That looks good.
A couple of thoughts - it looks similar to mindfulness-based cognitive therapy.
Also, you might be interested in the section in Ven Analayo's seminal work "Satipatthana", on "Investigation of Dhammas" which can be interpreted as self-reflexive analysis.
kind regards,

Ben
“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

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ground
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby ground » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:26 am

What is "Active Vipassana"? :sage:

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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby twelph » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:47 am


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Cittasanto
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:22 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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Cittasanto
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:36 am

I will have a proper read of the posts tonight and reply to any.


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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polarbear101
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby polarbear101 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:45 am

"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

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kirk5a
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby kirk5a » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:07 am

If the analysis doesn't result in stilling, it's papañca.
"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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Mr Man
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Mr Man » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:12 am

No it isn't. critical thinking is about thought based solutions to thought created problems. Vipassana is transformative. It creates a shift. Critical thinking is of the world.

Would be interested to hear from robertk and also from those with a strong "classical" sutta understanding would have to say?

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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:57 am


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Spiny Norman
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Spiny Norman » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:08 am

A brief definition of "critical thinking" would be helpful - or at least what it means in this thread.
"My religion is very simple - my religion is ice-cream."
Dairy Lama

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Dan74
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Dan74 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:13 pm

I understand critical thinking to mean an objective logical examination of a matter at hand. Objective usually implies 'from the outside', impartial. Logical implies using facts and inferences in accordance with a set of rules that describe permissible deductions, etc

Vipassana, I understand to be, becoming aware, discerning clearly, particularly vis-a-vis mental patterns that have up until now remained obscure. A necessary foundation is lack of clinging/investment in what is discerned. This corresponds to impartiality in critical thinking. Another necessary condition is clarity and a subtle sensitivity, which are cultivated through practice. The inquiry in vipassana is typically of an inner sort, where all matter of personal clinging may render the matter completely obscure. Many people adept at critical thinking fail miserably in inner inquiry, so I think they are quite different.
_/|\_

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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:38 pm

• • • • (Upasampadā: 24th June, 1979)

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robertk
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby robertk » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:13 pm


danieLion
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Postby danieLion » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:05 pm



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