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EDIT: I want to point out an important drawback of lying that people often overlook.
Each time you lie your mind will become more and more heavy because of burdens, this tremendously affect the quality of your life, as well as the high chance of rebirth in lower realm in next life, because a heavy mind will drag you down.
If you tell lies after lies, you have to remember which person you lied to, and the content of that lie, to stay consistent next time you meet them. And ordinary human being often have poor memory, and just a small slip can destroy your whole image, or even your life. Try to think about these burdens can be totally abandon if you always speak the truth and stay true to yourself, or in another word – integrity.
Scenario 1: You should avoid lying under any circumstance. In this case, how about just say “I don’t want to tell you about my personal things” or something similar. Having integrity is always better for us in the long run. In my personal experience, I always stay upright and being true to myself even at work, and my bosses know that and they won’t messing around with me. But If the worst thing happen then I just simply leave and find another job, any job that not violate Right Livelihood is good enough for me, I just need enough to sustain my body and my family. Having this attitude allow you to not be afraid under social pressure and give you energy to stay upright under harsh circumstances.
Scenario 2: In my case, I just simply say to them “I don’t drink”, as they ask me further, I just say “It’s personal reason”, and overtime, they gradually not focus on me any more. I think this is a good respond, you may not want to boasting about your precepts, but you also may not want to lie. If anyone really interested in the reason why I don’t drink then it is a opportunity for me to introduce them about the benefits of five precepts.
Scenario 3: I often tell them about my earning if asked, but if you don’t want to tell just say so, there is no need to wiggling around, this is also for practicing integrity.
Scenario 4: Again, just say what is true, or if you don’t want to say just remain silent or say “I don’t want to tell you about this information.”
Scenario 5: I’m a web developer, I don’t recall having seen any case in which your DoB on a online forum be used against you. But I also recommend hiding your DoB on social media platforms because hackers may exploits your information to build a dictionary and then brute-force your password if they desire. But I guess we are not celebrity so this problem is not really a problem. So my advice is just stay true to ourselves, we need every opportunity to practice truthfulness and from the very small things such as these, we build up our integrity.
The precepts need to be kept spotless and stainless, without any excuses if you want to proceed further on the Path. In many suttas the Buddha teaches about the qualities of a Stream-enterer (Sotapanna), one of them is spotless ethical conduct, praised by the wises.
Furthermore, having integrity is essential to even starting to walk the Path, the Buddha advised his son to not tell lies even just for a joke, you can see the seriousness in always staying truthful.
But to have a degree of faith enough to undertake the practice of integrity, you need to first learn about the Buddha’s teachings, develop Right View and gradually apply the Dhamma into your daily life. One of the most important views is the view about rebirth and kamma, you should contemplate on this, to leave no crack/hold for the tendencies to make excuses sneak through.May 11, 2019 at 1:10 am in reply to: How to counter the arguments about the goodness of sensual desires? #23005
Thanks all for your reply,
Out of compassion for them that I revealed the wisdom of the Buddha. But it was really a mistake that I try to introduce Dhamma to people without first attained to the Dhamma myself.
I have unshakable faith in the Triple Gems and memorized by heart the practice that lead to extinguishment, so it seems that I should finish the Path first before making anymore attempt to spread the Dhamma, or extinguish right there. I’m looking for a chance, 3 robes and a bowl to leave the lay life and go forth into the homelessness to finish the Path, then I’ll be set.
Hi Lal, about the current state of science development regarding the mind.
There seems a trend that some researchers slowly acknowledge about the continue existence of the mind after clinical death, here is one of the videos:
The minority of the scientists seem to arrive at the tip of the iceberg as of now.March 30, 2019 at 1:06 am in reply to: How to destroy Kama Raga and cultivate Ariya jhanas to attain the Anagami? #22509
It’s been 7 months since, and I made quite a drastic progress in the Path, but to be honest the Kama is still there, but the situation is a bit weird:
In the day and the evening, I live totally aware of my body, feelings and thoughts (I’m try to practice Satipatthana 24/7), Kamavitakka (or Byapadavitakka or Vihimsavitakka) would be destroyed as soon as they arise. I keep Sabbaasava Sutta in my heart for protection purpose.
But sometimes (maybe every 7 days) at night, when I laying down, Kama power seems to have multiply by 1000 and my Sati power decrease 1000 times. Maybe Mara the Evil One works harder at night I suppose. I try to not eat the trap but my power at that time was so weak, I couldn’t remember the protection Suttas that I’ve remembered by heart. So sometimes Mara still win over me, leaves behind much remorse and shame for me.
Maybe this because I haven’t got into the Jhanas yet. My situation is exactly like what described in this sutta MN25. In this sutta the Buddha said if one frequently abide in the Jhanas, one will blind the Mara, make him unable to control at will.
“Do you really “see the blackness during that whole time” or does it just flashes black and then you are out until you “come back”?
– In other words, does it remain black during the “out time”?”
I can’t say exactly, initially it can be describe as collapse into a darkness void or turn off a light bulb, then all senses and its consciousnesses cease so I can’t tell what’s happened or how long it happens, after a brief moment (as it seems) I regain consciousnesses, I can clearly feel that they (the consciousnesses) automatically grasp on life and bring it back because the experience feels like I’m going to extinct, like they re-climb a vertical cliff, despite I want to stay or not.
I have this experience that I don’t know what it is, maybe relate to Nibbana or maybe it just a problem with my physical health, it occur to me infrequently:
For a very brief moment, all of my “senses-impression” (including mana indriya) disappear completely, like an inner power outage, or an inner collapse, it’s all black, no self-talking, no feelings, no everything, it’s very hard to explain by words, it not mere black but there is something to it and I can’t know what inside of it because I wouldn’t know anyway (there is no senses operate while this state happens). And it was very brief that I can’t even taste what it’s like. But quickly, the senses automatically coming back, like they want to grasp on life and bring life back, and they switch on again, I don’t quite remember that the senses switch on one-by-one or all-at-once.
This state often occur to me when I lying down, deeply relax, sometime it just randomly happen out of nowhere, but mostly while I’m lying down. I had experienced this state back when I was a little child and not known about true Buddha Dhamma. It happens less and less as I grow up.
In 2018, I found the true Dhamma, so I wouldn’t miss a chance and immediately practice it, my persona changed dramatically, as I experienced the benefits of Buddha Dhamma, I also gain unbreakable faith in the Buddha, the Dhamma and the Sangha, and in this year I was experienced this senses absence phenomenal like 1 or 2 times.
EDIT: I personally never put a high importance on my abnormal experiences, it may just simply relate to my health problems, environment or something else, hard to discern.
So, gaining wisdom and practice the Path is the most important.
About the requisites for the Sotapanna stage, there is a whole Samyutta session dedicated to explain in detail about the Sotapanna, please read Sotapatti Samyutta (SN55). And on PureDhamma.net there is many posts that explained in details about Sotapanna stage and related issues.
Hi Alay, you said “the “mind” is still active but the “Physical” brain is damaged and no signals can come out?”
I think the “mind” cannot be active in the case of total brain damage, because vinnana cannot exist separately from other 4 khanda (rupa, sanna, vedana, sankhara). In the case serve brain damage, internal sense fields (ajjhatika ayatana) is not function, so the whole chain of dependant reactions will be collapsed, refer to Chachakka Sutta (MN148). They only alive due to the continuation of life-indriya.
About the post you mentioned, it writes:
Family says woman is not in a coma
The woman’s parents said in a statement Tuesday that she has “significant intellectual disabilities” but is able to move and respond to sound.
“The victim’s parents would like to make clear that their daughter is not in a coma,” said the statement released to CNN by the attorney for the parents. “She has significant intellectual disabilities as a result of seizures very early in her childhood.”
The woman does not speak but has some ability to move her limbs, head and neck. She also “responds to sound and is able to make facial gestures.”
“She has feelings, likes to be read to, enjoys soft music and is capable of responding to people she is familiar with, especially family,” the parents said.
“The important thing is that she is a beloved daughter, albeit with significant intellectual disabilities.”
“January 22, 2019 at 1:00 am in reply to: How much music would break the third precept in your opinion? #21496
Hi upekkha100, you said “Eliminating sense pleasures could potentially even be disadvantageous if one forces it”
Yes, you cannot just eliminating it as your will, this require gradual training, resolute effort, accompanied by the developing of panna. But this (the attitude to procrastinate of restraining the senses) is not a good attitude to be have as a disciple of The Buddha. The Buddha always ask his disciples to restraint their senses:
In Sabbasava Sutta (MN2), senses restraint is the second part of the Method to gradual get rid of asava.
In the sixth part, the one in practice should dispel any kamavitakka (sensual thought), byapadavitakka (malicious? thought) and vihimsavitakka (cruel? thought).
You said “I am personally not too sure about where the line from moderate to excessive indulgence is crossed when it comes to looking at beautiful objects or listening to music.”
In the third part of the above sutta, “the one in practice should using their needs (foods, cloths, shelter, medicines) for only these purposes, that is the continuation of life, support the training of the Path blamelessly and at ease. Not for fun, indulgence, adornment, or decoration. This is moderate.
In Adhipateyya Sutta (AN3.40), The Buddha ask the bhikkhus to have responsibility for their resolve, not to involve in sensual pleasures’ or unfit/evil thoughts, because it can be observe by devas and it would be a shame for that bikkhu. The bhikkhus should also think of the greater goal, why they left their home into the homelessness, why they go refuge to the Buddha, the Dhamma-Vinaya, the Sangha, so any kamaraga or unfit/evil thought – that they don’t mindful of – will not be fit.
In Girimananda Sutta (AN 10.60), The Buddha said “Ananda, all sankhāra are like meatless bones, without substance, to be rejected like urine and feces“.
In another sutta that I forgot its name, The Buddha point our precise way to get rid of sensual cravings. First, the trainee should develop the attitude of disgusting in sense objects. After this stage they can be equanimity about any sense objects and drop out the disgust feelings. Please correct me if I’m wrong on this.
In my own experience, listen to music frequently can be harmful to the practice. I was listen to music very frequently (just few months ago), even participated in my school’s music band. Nowaday, as the result of the indulgence in music, sometime, a random song just pop up in my mind out of nowhere, a blockage to samadhi. I understand that I was feeding the “music vinnanas” to much in the past, so now it pop up as bhava in my mind, like a form of harrasment, they are vipaka that I have to endure (again, linked to Sabbasava Sutta, part 4). Seeing the causes, conditions, the unfruitful and the danger of any senses pleasures that I encountered, including subtle one like music, I was able to let them go and at peace.
Hi lucas.cambon, you said “… Sotāpanna occurs upon attainment of the seventh stage. The right path (#6) is the gradual understanding that all formations are impermanent, suffering, and non-self.”.
Did you mean “… understanding that all formations are anicca, dukkha, and anatta“?
anicca is not “impermanent”
dukkha is not merely just “suffering”
anatta is definitely not “non-self”
About the reason behind this conclusion, please refer back to posts (Anicca, Dukkha, Anatta) on this (PureDhamma.net) site. Both logical evidences and based-on-the-suttas evidences.
About your details steps to Sotapanna, I don’t have any comment because I think everyone has different approach, but we need to get the key concepts right from the get go.January 20, 2019 at 3:24 am in reply to: Better to Investigate the Present Moment Than Looking In to Beginning #21453
I agree that we can’t waste our time talking about the beginning of the world, because this is one of the topic the Buddha didn’t want us to focus on.
But I think having a post describe briefly about the true origin of human in each maha kappa according to what’s described in Agganna Sutta is quite beneficial. Because there is the common view that human species evolve from animal and inherit some instinct of animal.
This view itself is very dangerous, people have this view rooted can just do whatever unskillful deed they want and then blame it to the animal instinct they are inherited, like uncontrolled sexual desire, unlimited greed, kill/lie/cheat/violent/wars due to survival instinct, etc.
According to the current Agganna Sutta translations, I think, are just tell us about the devolution of human’s morality, if that’s what the Sutta intended, then it’s just fine. But if something wrong with translations of the sutta then we must take action to clarify it, and this is the time to uproot that harmful view about human evolution (at least among us – the PureDhamma.net community).
So I think at least a post about Agganna Sutta is actually beneficial to ones who seek the truth.
There are many misconceptions about the Buddha’s world view, like Jambudipa is India, … And many missing links, like Where is other 3 places beside Jambudipa, and and where is other manussa beside us, …
In various suttas The Buddha said about what should be given to the Bhikkhus, that is what need for them to survive and practice the Path (robe, water, food, lodging, medicines, …). And in Danamahaphalasutta, the Buddha describe in details how giving works, what state of mind lead to which result. So it actually depend greatly on the state of mind of the giver and also the receiver, the actual gift is best to be usable and helpful (toward the Path) for the receiver.
In the sutta that I mentioned in the above post, The Buddha had gave us a scale to measure the merit of offering, base on that scale, I would say that offering to devas is worth more than 100 000 (ethical ordinary person) but will be much less than 10 000 000 000 (outsiders of Buddhism who are free of sensual desires), and it depends on if that deva is an Ariya or not. But nothing can be compare to the gifts give to Ariya, even giving to Sotapanna Anugami will yield uncountable merits.
I want to add this sutta about the benefits of giving, especially for virtual people and Bikkhus: The Analysis of Offerings to the Teacher (Dakkhiṇāvibhaṅgasutta MN142) (remember to click on the Gear icon and enable Pali-English parallel for easy reference). In this sutta. The Buddha even quantify the merits of giving by specific number, this is very interesting point:
Now, Ānanda, gifts to the following persons may be expected to yield the following returns. To an animal, a hundred times. To an unethical ordinary person, a thousand. To an ethical ordinary person, a hundred thousand. To an outsider free of sensual desire, 10,000,000,000. But a gift to someone practicing to realize the fruit of stream-entry may be expected to yield incalculable, immeasurable returns. How much more so a gift to a stream-enterer, someone practicing to realize the fruit of once-return, a once-returner, someone practicing to realize the fruit of non-return, a non-returner, someone practicing to realize the fruit of perfection, a perfected one, or a Buddha awakened for themselves? How much more so a Realized One, a perfected one, a fully awakened Buddha?
As I see, you are a new member of the forum. I think you should share your progression of the Path, so people can help you accordingly. I think this sutta may be helpful to you: Advice to Puṇṇa (Puṇṇovādasutta – MN145) (remember to click on the Gear icon and enable Pali-English parallel for easy reference).
But this sutta is for one who are well gone and skilled on the Path. But you can still practice it and see the benefits in everyday life. If you are new to Buddhism as well, I recommend that you should first read and take your time contemplate on all the posts on PureDhamma.net, especially on these topics: Buddha Dhamma, Key Dhamma Concepts, Living Dhamma and Three Level of Practice.
Please keep asking question if I my answer wasn’t satisfy you. Remember purify the mind is a gradual process. Hope you attain Magga Phala soon.
To add to this conversation. Scientist have recently (just few days) discovered a new region of brain. This region is unique to human, they think this region maybe what make human special from animals. Like the scientist keep looking for new particles and the new particles keep popping up.
We just can’t know exactly, there are endless possibilities and cannot just base on 1 person (i.e. Patient HM), science experiments need to be perform on large samples and have consistent results, this is why I think digging too deep is kind of a waste of time (especially for us, the Nibbana seekers).
But knowing the general schemes of the working of universe is always good and helps develop Sadda in Dhamma.
I don’t know the exact location, but I think just know the Mana Indriya located in the brain is enough. Careful when going too deep into these kind of “spiritual” subjects, it may veer you away from the Path to Nibbana.
Better take the precious time to contemplate on the Dhamma itself. The Buddha was said (according to Thanissaro Bhikkhu) “Every morning, looking at the rising sun, think about it as if this is your last morning, what you will do?”. There is so much of the Path to practice and contemplate, start from the very basic levels toward the realization of Nibbana (Dana, Sila, Sagga, Adinava, Nekkhamma and Cattari Ariya Saccani at the end of the gradual training process).
This is the first time I see you in this forum, may you attain Arahant stage in this very life. This is totally possible.