Advayavada Buddhism

ON COURSE WITH NATURE.

Archive for the tag “tanha”

Advayavada Study Plan – week 30

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 30] Non-liberated human beings are essentially prone to existential suffering (see week 29) because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent, but are not. Their mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst, craving or clinging (tanha in Pali, trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their fundamental ignorance (avijja in Pali, avidya in Sanskrit) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, particularly the changeability of everything (see week 27) and the selflessness and emptiness of all things (see week 28). This thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second noble truth of Buddhism, blinds them to the wonders of overall existence and can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will, laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as contaminate the efforts of others to improve theirs. Feel free to share this post.

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Advayavada Study Plan – week 17

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 17 = week 4 of 13, second quarter] As explained, the concept of dukkha (Pali) or duhkha (Sanskrit) does not include, in Advayavada Buddhism, emotional grief nor physical pain. It refers solely to the existential suffering, angst and regret non-enlightened human beings are prone to, and is, therefore, considered as a remediable psychological affliction; the enlightened person accepts with understanding and compassion the sorrow and pain which are part and parcel of human existence. It is easy to see that human beings experience existential suffering mainly because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent and unchanging, but are not. Their mistaken view and understanding of things is most often the result of a thirst, craving or clinging (called tanha in Pali and trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their not knowing (avijja or avidya) or not understanding or simply disbelieving the actual, i.e. impermanent, durational and finite, nature of individual existence, and this thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second of the four noble truths taught by the Buddha, can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will (vyapada), laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as affect the efforts of others to improve theirs.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 4

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 4 of 13] Human beings experience existential suffering (see week 3) most often because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent and unchanging, but are not. Their mistaken view and understanding of things is essentially the result of a thirst, craving or clinging (called tanha in Pali and trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their fundamental ignorance (avijja, avidya) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, particularly the changeability of everything (see week 1) and the selflessness and emptiness of all things (see week 2), and this thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second of the four noble truths of Buddhism, can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will (vyapada), laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as affect the efforts of others to improve theirs.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 43

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 43] Human beings experience existential suffering (see week 42) most often because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent and unchanging, but are not. Their mistaken view and understanding of things is essentially the result of a thirst, craving or clinging (called tanha in Pali and trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their fundamental ignorance (avijja, avidya) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, particularly the changeability of everything (see week 40) and the selflessness and emptiness of all things (see week 41), and this thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second of the four noble truths of Buddhism, can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will (vyapada), laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as affect the efforts of others to improve theirs. ~ @advayavada

Advayavada Study Plan – week 30

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 30] Human beings are essentially prone to existential suffering (see week 29) because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent, but are not. Their mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst, craving or clinging (tanha in Pali, trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their fundamental ignorance (avijja in Pali, avidya in Sanskrit) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, particularly the changeability of everything (see week 27) and the selflessness and emptiness of all things (see week 28). This thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second noble truth of Buddhism, can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will, laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as contaminate the efforts of others to improve theirs. (from advayavada.org/#plan)

Advayavada Study Plan – week 17

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 17] Man is basically prone to existential suffering (dukkha, duhkha) because he wrongly strives after and tries to hold on to things, concepts and situations which he believes to be permanent, but are not. His mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst, craving or clinging (tanha in Pali, trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by his fundamental ignorance (avijja in Pali, avidya in Sanskrit) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, especially its changeability and selflessness or emptiness. This is the second noble truth of Buddhism, and this thirst, craving or clinging can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will, laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as contaminate the efforts of others to improve theirs. (from advayavada.org/#plan)

Advayavada Study Plan – week 4

[week 4] Man is prone to existential suffering (dukkha or duhkha) because he wrongly strives after and tries to hold on to things, concepts and situations which he believes to be permanent, but are not. His mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst, craving or clinging (tanha in Pali, trishna in Sanskrit) which is caused in turn by his fundamental ignorance (avijja in Pali, avidya in Sanskrit) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, i.e. its changeability and selflessness or emptiness. This is the second noble truth of Buddhism, and this thirst, craving or clinging can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will, laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as contaminate the efforts of others to improve theirs. (from advayavada.org/#plan)

Rejection of Material Attachments (Alan Fox)

Both Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) and [the legendary and obscure ‘proto-daoist’] Yangzi seem to be as concerned with the quality of life as they are with its length. Thoreau further believes that the simple life is conducive not only to individual health, but also ultimately to social stability: “I am convinced, that if all men were to live as simply as I then did, thieving and robbery would be unknown. These take place only in communities where some have got more than is sufficient while others have not enough.”

That is, it is to a certain extent our emphasis on, and imbalanced distribution of, material goods that cultivates negative moral values. This concern is consistent with the Yangist and Daoist traditions. As A.C. Graham points out [in his Disputers of the Tao, Philosophical Argument in Ancient China, Chicago 1989]: “In the present-day version of the Lao-tzu there are many passages expressing this idea of prizing life and despising material things.” Besides the resemblance to, among others, chapter 3 of the Daodejing, where Laozi suggests that “not valuing what is hard to come by will prevent the people from considering thievery”, what is significant here is a utopic conception of primal simplicity. On the individual level, this kind of simplicity, for Thoreau as well as for Yangzi, constitutes a kind of efficiency, which conserves vital resources and ensures the maximum enjoyment or sense of fulfilment of life. On a social level, it leads to social stability and lack of friction and conflict in general social intercourse. In the broadest, most comprehensively ecological sense, we can also say that this kind of conservationism is also conducive to a healthy natural environment. Individuals, societies, and whole ecologies work better when they are allowed to operate in the most simple and efficient manner, according to this model.

In this regard, Thoreau and Yangist thought both seem inconsistent with adherence to formalities that involve affected manners and empty courtesies. On the other hand, such behaviour constitutes an unrecoverable waste of human and natural resources. But further, it also represents hypocritical distractions from the more subtle but truly important concerns of life. Thoreau says: “I delight to come to my bearings, not to walk in procession with pomp and parade, in a conspicuous place, but to walk even with the Builder of the universe, if I may, not in this restless, nervous, bustling, trivial Nineteenth Century, but stand or sit thoughtfully while it goes by. What are men celebrating? They are all on a committee of arrangements, and hourly expect a speech from somebody.”

This is generally reminiscent of the very common critiques of Confucian rites and manners (li) found in the writings of the Mohists and some of the Daoists. In some of these accounts, superficial virtues are accused of crowding out more substantial and authentic ones. For example, chapter 5 of the Daodejing emphasizes that the imposition of moral standards tends to impede the natural course of events, and specifically repudiates the cardinal Confucian virtue of ren (often translated as humaneness, benevolence or perfect social integration) as artificial and arbitrary. And Thoreau says of the truly good person that “his goodness must not be a partial and transitory act, but a constant superfluity, which costs him nothing and of which he is unconscious”. That is, it is better to be good than to act good. Thus, the artificial, ‘manufactured’ quality of ceremony is rejected by the ideal person as inhibiting one’s intrinsically determined evolution and development. (Adapted from Rejection of Material Attachments, in Guarding what is Essential: Critiques of Material Culture in Thoreau and Yang Zhu, by Alan Fox, in Philosophy East and West, Honolulu, July 2008)

Advayavada Study Plan – week 43

Dear friends,

The purpose of Advayavada Buddhism is to become a true part of the whole.

This week (43) we further deepen our understanding that ignorant craving is the real cause of existential suffering.

According to Advayavada Buddhism, it is indisputable that the Buddha did not believe in Brahman (God, transcendent and immutable Absolute) or in the atta or atman (soul, immortal self) and taught that man suffers because he does not understand and accept that all things in life are instead utterly changeable and transitory; if the Buddha had ever expressed belief in Brahman and the atta or atman, such a fact would have been unequivocally recorded in History. Man is prone to existential suffering (dukkha, duhkha) quite simply because he wrongly strives after and tries to hold on to things, concepts and situations which he believes to be permanent, but are not.

Man’s mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst or craving (called tanha in Pali and trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by his fundamental ignorance (avijja, avidya) of the true nature of reality. This fact is the second of the four noble truths of Buddhism. And this thirst or craving can easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will, laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder any efforts to better his circumstances.

Kind regards,
John Willemsens
Advayavada Foundation
@advayavada

Advayavada Study Plan – week 30

Dear friends,

This week (30) we further deepen our understanding that ignorant craving is the real cause of suffering.

According to Advayavada Buddhism, it is indisputable that the Buddha did not believe in Brahman (God, transcendent and immutable Absolute) or in the atman or atta (soul, immortal self) and taught that man suffers because he does not understand and accept that all things in life are instead utterly changeable and transitory; if the Buddha had ever expressed belief in Brahman and the atman or atta, such a fact would have been unequivocally recorded in History. Man is prone to suffering (duhkha, dukkha) quite simply because he wrongly strives after and tries to hold on to things, concepts and situations which he believes to be permanent, but are not.

Man’s mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst or craving (called trishna in Sanskrit and tanha in Pali) which is in turn caused by his fundamental ignorance (avidya, avijja) of the true nature of reality. And this thirst or craving can easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will, laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder any efforts to better his circumstances.

Kind regards,
John Willemsens
Advayavada Foundation
@advayavada

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