One of the criticisms directed to EBT circles is that they promote suicide.
Classical theravādins suppose that the reason is the absence of Commentary.
How about defending?
This was in reference to several (3 or more) Westerner Monks who are Suttanta only and killed themselves.
- Ven NyanaVira (Clearing the Path)
- The monk from the what-the-buddha-saiddotnet website
- A monk who lived near to the Island Forest Hermitage where ven Nyanavira was from… recently last year or so.
The problem is being totally Suttanta and not believing the commentary…
It should be noted that anyone who was alive during the time of the Buddha let alone someone who ordained during the time of the Buddha had incredible amounts of pārami, usually well planned / determined through many eons. This should not be attempted by anyone.
I think the Suttanta people:
- Miss the commentary note about ven Channa’s luck and dhamma urgency to attain at the near time of death
- They don’t understand the well thought out planning / determination to ordain under a living Buddha. This is also true with those who attain is such a short amount of time. They somehow believe this is possible after reading a few suttas, or a single nikāya.
For some reason, these suicide suttas are considered controversial and the suttantrika followers claim these commentary explanations are: “one of the many band-aids that the commentary puts puts onto the suttas to fix things”. I have also had a conversation about this before with Western monk. They felt suicide was okay to do.
For me…the commentaries make total sense for this topic.