Importance of Personal Experience

Viewing 6 reply threads
  • Author
    • #39595

      I brought what I said in another post so that others could understand it without any other reference.

      “To tell you the truth, I tried to express using logic the concepts of Puredhamma in a completely different way. There were two reasons for this. The first reason was to make it easier for others to access Puredhamma’s contents. I thought multiple ways to access Dhamma seemed good. The other was to test the contents’ consistency.

      But there was a problem. During this work, I sometimes became overly skeptical. If a person’s mind is covered with so much suspicion, he can’t understand Dhamma. I was trying to express concepts in my own way that I didn’t even understand! And I’ve found inconsistencies in the process. Fortunately, I also scrutinized the results of my reasoning so I could find that they were all meaningless. Also, while maintaining an overly skeptical attitude, I had often thought about acinteyya topics. I had neglected to purify my mind and become accustomed to thinking only in my head.

      I analyzed why I became so skeptical. The reason is that I was confusing “understanding that anicca has no logical flaw” with “cultivating anicca sanna.” I even mistook myself for sotapanna before. I had thought I was ariya, so I wondered why the effects of progress didn’t come to me. In conclusion, I resolve to be humble and never arrogant about learning Dhamma now.

      I realized that I had been mistaken for knowing so many posts. I decided to read all the posts again in English with a new mindset. I thought it might be faster to start all over again than to find out where my understanding went wrong.”

      After that, I tried to purify my mind wholeheartedly. And just one day after I wrote the above, so many Dhamma concepts were starting to be a clear understanding, which was amazing. I didn’t understand how sotapanna could avoid an apayagami akusala citta before. Of course, I read the mechanism in Akusala Citta – How a Sotāpanna Avoids Apāyagāmi and the forum post. So I could know how the thing works out. I just couldn’t believe that it can work in reality. In short, I thought it could be possible in theory, but I wondered whether it was actually possible.

      Now I understand it. A purified mind intuitively knows how to solve the problem in the right way without any calculating process moment. It works instantly! When I realized this, I remembered the sentence of the post I had seen before.

      “But that problem goes away when we realize that a photon (or any particle) takes into account ‘all possible paths’ instantaneously due to the nonlocality of Nature.

      That is why a sotapanna automatically can avoid generating an apayagami kamma. He/she doesn’t even have to think about it.

      I had been thinking about how I can consciously avoid doing a certain wrong thing. So the focus was what is the perfect precept which is never broken, and I tried to make a structure of it. I failed it because it was another form of nicca perception. It was an absolutely meaningless effort to attain a sotapanna stage. Rather than describing the process of the mind coming up with the right answer, one must focus on purifying one’s mind. This is an important point. These two are not the same process at all.

      There is no perfect precept. If one just follows precept, it will work temporarily but never reach a permanent morality. Any precept CAN NOT contain the ultimate code of ethics. There is bound to be an ethical vacuum. Let me explain this as an example.

      There is someone who doesn’t want to learn to calculate the addition. So he doesn’t think about what is plus and how it works. But anyway, he has to solve his homework, so he looks at the answer sheet and copies it on paper. He writes that 39 plus 23 is 62 but doesn’t know what it means. As he repeats this, the next time he sees the problem of 39 plus 23, he can write 62 as it is wontedly. But if things change a little, such as 38 plus 24, he can’t cope.

      In the same way, one who just follows the precept without understanding must be in this unresponsive situation. The only valid solution is to understand what is nature’s law and how it works with learning dhamma.

      So now the problem I have to solve is simpler than before. I don’t need to devise any new concepts to understand the Dhamma. Trusting a clean mind and doing it right is all I have to do. I tried to solve problems only by logic and thinking before. I did not regard experience as a reliable means of recognition. As a result, I couldn’t really understand the Dhamma. I didn’t understand what was wrong until I experienced ‘understand by experience’. If anyone has the same problem as me, please look at what you are missing. I felt it would be better to share my experience.

      May all existences be with the Blessings of the Buddha, Dhamma, and Sangha!

    • #39597

      That is wonderful!
      – Buddha’s teachings are seeping into you faster. One just needs to get started, and once taken hold, Dhamma will take over.
      – In the old days (when I was much younger), cars used to get stalled. A bunch of people needed to give the car a “big push” to get it moving. At a certain speed, the engine will start. After that, you just drive where you want to go. It becomes so easy.
      – It looks like you have reached that starting point or may be close.

      By the way, your English is good too. I remember that you initially hesitated to come to the forum when you wrote emails to me. No worries! You can express yourself well.

      The last sentence could be better as:
      May all living beings be with the Blessings of the Buddha, Dhamma, and Sangha!

      May the Blessings of the Buddha, Dhamma, and Sangha be with you on your journey!

    • #39630

      Thank you for your warm encouragement.

      Also, for correcting my sentence! When I wrote that sentence, I tried to find the right word, but I couldn’t. Now I found the proper term!

    • #39644

      I am not sure whether you have read the following posts. They help understand a writing convention (adopted by early European scholars) that is widely used today to “write Pali words.”

      Tipiṭaka English” Convention Adopted by Early European Scholars – Part 1” and the second part referred to therin.

      It may also be helpful to pronounce Pali words correctly. One could read the Pali version of, say “Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta” while listening a good recitation of it:
      Boy Who Remembered Pāli Suttas for 1500 Years” and “Sutta Chanting (with Pāli Text)” have recitation of that sutta.

      By the way, anyone can use this thread to ask questions on the above or if they have related questions.
      – I see some people writing Pali words inconsistent with the above convention.
      More importantly, many pronounce Pali words incorrectly because they are unaware of the above “Tipitaka English” convention. For example, “citta” is not pronounced with “t” as in “top.” Rather it is pronounced with both “t”s as in “Theme”. Also, “c” is not pronounced as in “cat” but with “ch” sound as in “chip.”
      – Thus, in standard English, that word may be written as “chiththa.”

    • #39649

      Thank you for the recommendations. I’ll read these posts soon and be careful about writing Pali words.

    • #39651

      I don’t think you wrote any Pali words incorrectly.
      – It was general advice to all, especially about pronunciation. That is where I don’t have any feedback at all. So, I don’t even know whether it is a significant issue.
      – I just wanted to ensure that people know about the “Tipitaka English” convention for writing Pali words. Some newer readers may not even have read those posts.

    • #39653

      Oh, I think this is a problem by the cultural difference between English and Korean. I understood what you mean.

Viewing 6 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.