On August 19, 2020 at 12:53 pm, y not posted:
Very reasonable questions, Grenier. Justified and factual too.
I see it this way. What someone on the Path is actually trying to do is to go beyond Nature. No less than that. But once one accepts the Buddha’s Teaching and has come to unshakeable confidence in the Dhamma and the Sangha as well, it is there that the Great Struggle begins. One has come to right view. It then becomes a tug-of-war between Nature on the one side and the Dhamma on the other, with you the knot in the middle of the rope. It is said somewhere in the suttas, in the Dhammapada if I remember correctly, that one who conquers himself (is no longer swayed this way and that by Nature) is greater that a conqueror of many lands and kingdoms. Why? Because it is much harder, obviously.
It is certainly not natural to defy Nature, to go beyond Nature, to try to be rid of greed, aversion and delusion. Yet, reflecting on the Buddha’s teachings that not only the harm we do to other beings, but also the apparently innocent pleasures we so cheerfully indulge in, will bring us harm in the longer run and, indeed, forevermore- in that they keep us chained to sansara, much of which by far consists of existences in the apayas.
It is no easy undertaking. Up to the Sakadagami Stage it can be said to be reasonably ‘do-able’. Beyond that, where all sensuality is given up, including sex, only Anagamis and Arahants have reached. So it is done in steps. The elimination of wrong views, not committing unwholesome deeds, observing morality the best you can, being generous…. you may be there already, I cannot tell. I sincerely hope so. Then, constantly reflecting on the Dhamma is of paramount importance. This will in time give rise to aveccappsada in the Buddha (and in the Dhamma and the Sangha). You are done with the apayas for a start.
May the Dhamma guide you on.