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September 17, 2012

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I am very fond of coming in the top look.Praise.

Icchantika: (M. i. 265) is by Joaquín Pérez Remón. I tend to favor I.B. Horner when it comes to the Majjhima-Nikaya; and Bhikkhu Bodhi for the Samyutta-Nikaya, although I am not happy with his "nonself" for anattâ which should really be "not the self." Often I have to look at the Pali to see the specific terms.

The reason why the West excludes personal self-knowledge as you call it is not because evil materialists hate deep spiritual knowledge, but because due to various proven phenomena such as hallucinations and the placebo effect, they simply cannot be trusted as shared, common knowledge.

You will agree that we cannot simply believe every single claims: one is abducted by aliens, saw lights at the end of the tunnel, angels, or Virgin Mary, or a burning bush, or the Heavenly assembly of cherubs.

You can read the mystical revelations in the Apocalypse, about the beast with seven diadems and the number 666 and Christ's mystical wife, mystical Kaballah geometry and numberology and what have you. What is one to make of such mystical experiences? Are they automatically proof, because someone claims to have experienced them "deep within his very self" and that "they cannot be empirically corroborated"?

Muhammad had one too, it inspired him to write the Quran. It is not that Western science hates mystics/spiritualists. It is simply that there are so many claimants to so many varied experiences (that also contradict each other), that one is left confused about which to trust.

Moreover, a person who takes LSD, let alone something truly powerful like DMT, is suddenly catapulted outside of this reality, into a multidimensional superspace in which impossible geometrical shapes (such as square circles) become possible. So what do we conclude: that there are different dimensions the mind can travel to, or that DMT influences the brain in such and such ways? That's the question.

If every mystical experience, "self-knowledge" claim is true, then we live in a truly crazy world, in which both Jesus is the son of God, Mary appears in various places, Buddhas appear and disappear, Hindu gods send avatars, energies heal wounds, Allah is the only god, in which it is possible to unite with God (Christian mystics), but at the same time, there is no creator God (Buddhist mystics), and so on and so forth.

If there are contradictions between them, which "self-knowledge" is correct?

Very simple, this is the reason the West has problem with "self-knowledge". Now, there are many things that are both TRUE and cannot be EMPIRICALLY VERIFIED. Such as mathematical truths, logic axioms, and so on. Why? Because empirical science PRESUPPOSES them, so it cannot prove them. The axioms of logic and mathematics are the foundation of science, so they are a priori true without the need of verifying them.

The question is, can you Buddhist prove your claims in a logic, a priori fashion? If you can, then they will be philosophically considered true WHILE being empirically beyond reach.

This is what the philosopher Nagarjuna tried to do, using dialectics, in a truly magnificent fashion. He did not simply say: "I had a mystical experience that is beyond verification and that authorizes me." - He used logic and deduction, so that everyone can benefit from his wisdom, not only the mystics. Now, his arguments are fallacious and he does not reason with the rigor of modern logic, but that's another thing.

That's it, sorry for the long comment. thanks for writing a good blog. Which translation of the suttas you use, btw? Mine is very different from yours

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