The Dhamma Puzzle

Hi there,

I am more and more convinced there is no end to intellectual Dhamma confusion, in this sense, that we can talk endlessly about Dhamma concepts. We cannot really solve this intellectual confusion by reading more texts, study even more intens, listening to many teachers. That is my personal experience, at least.

Maybe some people have come to some intellectual clarity, and have a big picture in which any piece of the Dhamma puzzle fits. With much effort one has a kind of consistent Dhamma story to tell oneself and others. And one feels that this consistency is the proof that it must be true Dhamma. I think i see this a lot.

That can look impressive. But, my experience is, if you investigate all that, you will see that this socalled consistent Dhamma story is also formed, constructed, and also based on highly subjective choices, emotions, rooted in tanha. It is not really all that neutral, objective, as one tries to tell oneself and others.

If one after many years of intellectual confusion about Dhamma stuff has finally a consistent big Dhamma picture to tell oneself and others, ofcourse one will feel more peace, more ease, cooling down, but i feel it is not real. It is forced. It is based on ideas, on more attachment, but not on really letting go, detachment.

Moreover, the personal fire, tanha one still has, is now totally aimed at sharing and prooving that consistent Dhamma story to be true. It is always about prooving ones own ideas, choices, explanation.

I believe it shows how the tendency to become radical, polarize, become fanatic is very strong. I think it is a real danger personally, for mankind, for the Sangha, for all beings.

Snp 4.5: Paramaṭṭhakasutta—Bhikkhu Sujato (

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There is an end. Stream winning. Right view eradicates doubt. But of course, they can keep on learning more dhamma as well, like Ananda.


Yes. Very important to know when to retreat. To go practice meditation. To see for yourself.


I believe in reality people who claim to be at least stream-winners can have very different explanations too.

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People can get quite attached to their favoured interpretation. Though in the end, it’s not something that can be resolved by the intellect. One needs to still the mind, and allow for a more intuitive understanding.

The Paramaṭṭhakasutta Snp 4.5 must be handled with proper knowledge and spiritual maturity. Otherwise, an uneducated run-of-the-mill person will have very strong tendency to be influenced by the doctrine of “eel-wriggler” Sañjaya Belaṭṭhaputta.

Very recently, Ven. @sujato has also brought into daylight such dangerous tendency in this thread:

If you open yourself up, study the texts, listen to explanation of different teachers, reflect on it, one will still feel that one is quit clueless about many important Dhamma concept.

Letting that sink in leads to spiritual maturity. Seeing things as they really are. Fighting this confusion,
and seeking grip by only listening to one teacher, one tradition, one explanation is not spiritual maturity, but just a way of forcing clarity, forcing understanding, forcefulness.

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So in the first post, you said this statement:

And in your second post, you said this contradictory statement to your first post:

It appears quite obvious to me that you are following the “eel-wriggler” Sañjaya Belaṭṭhaputta

  1. You are currently confused. You are assuming that no one is better. So you grasp that everyone else must also be confused.

  2. Even worse, you are preventing other people with clear eyes (monastics inclusive) to help remaining confused people. You explicitly praise the so-called virtue of ignorance and encourage others to stay ignorant as you do. You are criticizing and gagging everyone else as:

  1. It is strikingly similar to the view held by brahman Lohicca in Lohiccasutta DN12:

“Suppose that a brahman or contemplative were to arrive at a skillful doctrine. Having arrived at a skillful doctrine, he should not declare it to anyone else, for what can one person do for another? It would be just the same as if, having cut through an old bond, one were to make another new bond. I say that such a thing is an evil, greedy deed, for what can one person do for another?”

Such view had been rightfully criticized by the Buddha and also had been acknowledged by brahman Lohicca to be a wrong view:

“What do you think, Lohicca? Don’t you reign over Salavatika?”
“Yes, Master Gotama.”
“Now, suppose someone were to say, ‘The brahman Lohicca reigns over Salavatika. He alone should consume the fruits & revenues of Salavatika, and not share them with others.’ Would someone speaking in this way be a creator of obstacles for your subjects, or would he not?”
“He would be a creator of obstacles, Master Gotama.”
“And, being a creator of obstacles, would he be sympathetic for their welfare or not?”
“He would not be sympathetic for their welfare, Master Gotama.”
“And in one not sympathetic for their welfare, would his mind be established in good will for them, or in animosity?”
“In animosity, Master Gotama.”
“When the mind is established in animosity, is there wrong view or right view?”
“Wrong view, Master Gotama.”

Out of compassion, I am criticizing your view only because your view is just seriously too bad.

Sure :stuck_out_tongue:

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