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Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana - Page 2 - Dhamma Wheel

Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
alan
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby alan » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:47 am

Actually I was giving you a way out.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:56 am


alan
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby alan » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:01 am

Take on the idea, tilt, not who said it. It's a diversion to ask who said what in this context. I could say A, B and C said it. Then you'd just tell me that you have no respect for A, B and C.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:08 am


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tiltbillings
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:17 am

Keep in mind, Alan, that the OP states: "I don't necessarily agree with Wallace, but I'm curious exactly what Tiltbillings finds unimpressive about Wallace's critique, and what everyone thinks of the article he posted." He asking my opinion here, and one of things I find as a problem with this article is the accusation of unnamed modern Vipassana teachers teaching in a way that distorts the Dhamma, which very unnecessarily tars pretty much all modern Vipassana teachers with doing that.

alan
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby alan » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:22 am

Oh, tilt.
Why the anger? I apologize if I said anything in the past that upset you.
We were supposed to be discussing the article. But you've turned it into a prosecution, and it does not reflect well on you. Thought I'd give you a chance to cool down, but you keep charging! Why?

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tiltbillings
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:30 am


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d.sullivan
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby d.sullivan » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:51 am

Every blade in the field,
Every leaf in the forest,
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up.

Thoreau.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:17 am


PeterB
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby PeterB » Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:29 am

I am reminded of the analogy made in another thread about the treasure map , when the "expert" ( which was once defined by someone as " a guy from out of town who brings a flip-chart ) says that the Buddha didnt teach what he is said to teach etc. and therefore the map is wrong, and he addresses these remarks to someone loading up on the treasure he has discovered by following the map..
The same with Alan Wallace. I have done Vipassana retreats with a number of modern teachers* and they have reinforced and clarified my Dhamma practice like nothing else.
They have all emphasised the 8 fold path. They have all emphasised sila. modern Vipassana is dynamic and effective, and totally different to chewing the Dhamma fat.

* teachers in the Goenka and, Sayadaw tradition and primarly, Dhiravamsa.

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sukhamanveti
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby sukhamanveti » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:16 am

Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5

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d.sullivan
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby d.sullivan » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:29 am

Every blade in the field,
Every leaf in the forest,
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up.

Thoreau.

PeterB
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby PeterB » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:35 am

If you are correct Sukhmanveti in your indentification of the kind of modern teacher that Wallace is aiming his piece at then frankly he is attempting to evaluate an important Buddhist development without the necessary means of measurement. He might as well criticise Vipassana as taught by Osho's "Neo-Sanyassins ",
It exposes a danger in any Rime type of attempt to establish a neuralised Pan-Buddhism. To whit, that depth will be sacrificed in the cause of breadth.
And that the resulting melange will be a shade of khaki.
Last edited by PeterB on Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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d.sullivan
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby d.sullivan » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:39 am

Every blade in the field,
Every leaf in the forest,
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up.

Thoreau.

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jcsuperstar
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby jcsuperstar » Fri Jun 11, 2010 10:03 am

well he uses the term like you're supossed to know who he's talking about, so i googled it here are some modern vipassana teachers
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat

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Zom
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby Zom » Fri Jun 11, 2010 10:18 am

Last edited by Zom on Fri Jun 11, 2010 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PeterB
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby PeterB » Fri Jun 11, 2010 10:46 am

It is a puzzle to me that these lists usually exclude Dhiravamsa..who was one of the pioneers in the field.
He as Chao Khun Dhammasudhi more or less single handedly introduced Vipassana to the UK in the late 60's. Before the Mahasi or Goenka organisations reached these islands. ( I am fairly sure ).
He left the robe some time ago and continues to teach. He lives in the Canary islands.
I am sure Mr. Walalce would be less than enthusiastic about his approach.

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Sobeh
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby Sobeh » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:15 pm

From the article:

"When I first noticed this disparity about thirty years ago..."

Could be his information is simply out-of-date and he hasn't thought to re-assess the current context.
---

Tilt: rather than asking what bare attention means, let's ask the author of the article in question what he thinks it means:

"...bare attention corresponds much more closely to the Pali term manasikara..."

(In Sammasati, An Exposition of Right Mindfulness by Ven. P. A. Payutto:
"To demonstrate the process involved as a sequence of events, one could say that when sati brings an object to mind and lays it down in full view of the mind, yoniso-manasikara, as it were, picks it up and manipulates it in such a way that pañña may scrutinize it and then deal with it effectively.")

So what is the author's problem?

"The cultivation of bare attention is valuable in many ways, and there’s a rapidly growing body of research on its benefits for both psychological and physiological disorders. But it’s incorrect to equate that with mindfulness, and an even greater error to think that’s all there is to vipassana."

It seems he might agree with Ven. Payutto's quote, above. Logically we would say that bare attention (yoniso-manasikara) is a necessary but insufficient component of the vipassana process. But wait!

"So bare attention doesn’t by any means capture the complete significance of vipassana, but represents only the initial phase in the meditative development of right mindfulness." (emphasis added)

(Payutto disagrees here, as yoniso-manasikara is not initial:
"A comparison may be made to someone in a rowing boat out on a choppy river, picking flowers or water greens. Firstly, that person ties up the boat or anchors it in such a way that it will remain stationary at the spot where the plants grow. Then with one hand he grasps hold of the stems, gathers them together and exposes them as conveniently as possible for harvesting. With the other hand, using the tool he has prepared for the job, he cuts them off. Sati may be compared to the anchor which stabilized the boat, enabling the man to remain within reach of the plants. The boat, held stationary at a given spot, may be compared to the mind. The hand which grasps the plant stems and holds them in a convenient way is like yoniso-manasikara. The other hand, using a sharp tool to cut off the stems, is like pañña.")

Aside from differing on the ordinal structure, both agree that yoniso-manasikara is a component and not, in and of itself, the whole of vipassana. So now we have a rubric: a vipassana meditation teacher will be subject to the author's critique if they teach only yoniso-manasikara to the exclusion of other sammasati path factors.

Turns out we simply need to determine if this rubric applies to one vipassana teacher or another, or we have to deny the rubric as being either subtly or critically flawed.

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Goofaholix
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby Goofaholix » Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:17 pm


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mikenz66
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Re: Alan Wallace on Modern Vipassana

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:26 pm



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