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Idappaccayata, anicca and anatta


#42

Well if it is that complex, any number of complex belief systems about a Soul would have stopped their capacity to be stream entrants


#43

So, returning to the OP, I’m suggesting that idappaccayata is fundamental, with anatta and anicca as consequences or “symptoms”.

Idappaccayata is inconsistent with Absolutes, and therefore it is inconsistent with permanence and own-being.

To put this another way, the Buddha was able to explain human experience purely in terms of paticcasamuppada, without reference to Absolutes like Atman and Brahman. Note that paticcasamuppada is a specific application of idappaccayata.

Your thoughts?


#44

Idapaccayata also has meaning of specificity - a certain type of cause will only give rise to one or specialized number of effects, so that a degree of uniformity of experience, and also an illusion of continuity and familiarity is maintained. It could have potentially been a maelstorm of mixed phenomena, but a certain continuity maintains the illusion of an autbiographical flow of ‘life as we know it’. This is depicted in the paticcasamuppada. This process captures the meaning embeded in a cause and passes it to an effect.


#45

Keep enquiring who/what is having this assumed control? - where is it?
Let us know when you find something.


#46

I’m not convinced that this is important. It May be sufficient just for the three to CO-exist.


#47

You can also ask “Who or what is being mindful?” and “Who or what is deciding to make Right Effort?”, and “Who or what is choosing to practice?”, and so on.
I don’t have an answer to those questions. Do you?


#48

Teachings not holding together logically seems pretty significant to me. I don’t regard these teachings as articles of faith, things just to be accepted without serious questioning and analysis.


#49

Maybe Sutta AN 10.92 can share some light on this?


#50

Which bit of AN 10.92 is relevant to this thread?


#51

Sorry my fault, i must have added the wrong sutta, i will correct it to the right one :slight_smile:


#52

Isn’t that the point?


#53

Not really. There’s a big difference here between not being able to explain something, and making an assertion, which is what the anatta doctrine effectively does.


#54

I don’t think so. Kaccayanagotta sutta says things existing ontologically is to be discarded. Everything is fleeting, including a sense of self. Seeing arises due to stimulation. Choices have their causes, and when they arise it is not without those causes. Do you consider the body your self or your mind so that we can analyse it through the sieve of the five aggregates


#55

My sense of self doesn’t feel “fleeting”, it is deep-seated and ingrained. My choices are clearly affected by conditions and conditioning, but I don’t agree with your deterministic interpretation, which appears to negate free-will.
In the suttas self-view is described as being a sankhara, so it’s “in the mind”, but saying that doesn’t answer anything. It feels like you’re quoting doctrine, rather than engaging in the discussion.


#56

Here the valid question comes up what the pedagogic strategy of the suttas is. If the suttas were describing only self-evident truths, i.e. truisms, they would have no value at all. And if they were to deal with truths that can never be experienced (how great heavenly rebirth is for example) we would have only faith. Both would be rather ‘primitive’, for a soteriological tradition at least.

My understanding is that the (relevant) suttas assume that we had faith-inducing experiences already, be it through witnessing arahants, or through the beauty of the Dhamma, and subsequent first meditation experiences.

Further I understand the suttas saying “Yes, your sense of identity seems solid, and foundational for all of your experiences. But I am telling you that there is a beyond. And this beyond is freedom. If you have faith that this beyond exists, what are the dis-identifications you would have to carry out in order to transcend the for-now solid sense of self? I am telling you that the mental operations you’d have to carry out have to do with the khandhas, the ayatanas, and the dhatus. You can dis-identify from all of these. But you have to go ahead and investigate until the ‘believing’ becomes a ‘knowing and seeing’”.

This is at least the agenda of the practice oriented suttas as I personally piece it together. If one doesn’t have the basic faith I guess that little convincing can be said. But once I have faith, I think it makes little sense to just repeat the dogmatic assertions of the suttas, and the practice should change into finding the yet-unrealized angle that makes the statements of the suttas an evident truth.


#57

The sutras don’t take us there; they point the way. We have to do the work by following the 8fnp through sila, panna and samadhi.


#58

Yes, its not the blind man’s theories of a tail of an elephant mistaken for a snake: the Buddha has seen the entire elephant. And has become the elephant [dhamma]…


#59

Have you found a feeling which is permanent?


#60

See, but this is an expression of faith, not an experience or an evident truth. I don’t know what the Buddha has seen or not. A statement like this is similar to what Christians say about Jesus, some Hindus about Krsna etc… I don’t see much value in expressing one’s faith here as an argument to make a point. People share this view anyway, or they don’t.

There are many things I have not found, which doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. I can tell myself that a concrete wall mostly consists of empty space and insubstantial vibration, it will still kill me if I crash against it - like a rock-solid object would do. It’s under specific circumstances that a concrete wall let’s us observe its insubstantiality. And I think that we should rather find these conditions than just to state that a concrete wall isn’t actually solid (or that feelings etc. are not).


#61

When you ask about permanence, do you mean in relation to a sense of self, or a conventional self, or an Atman? The first two would need to involve a degree of continuity, but only the last would need to be permanent.
Again we’re back to a lack of clarity about what anatta is supposed to be negating, and a muddling of anicca and anatta.