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December 16, 2018

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"According to Buddhist **scholasticism**, the self is purely the result of physical and mental processes, a sort of 'mental fabrication' which has no ultimate reality."

The quote is absolutely correct; this is what Buddhist SCHOLASTICS had to say, but not what Buddha Himself had to say.

That's the problem, i.e. that they are only interested in ehat Buddhist SCHOLASTICS said not what Buddha said.

Further, I think an excellent argument can be made that the 5 aggregates themselves, despite their ubiquity in the Pali Canon, are a later scholastic creation, i.e. that Buddha in all those cases actually just said sakkaya (the body) and the scholastics decided to split that into their new conception of 5 aggregates or constituent components that they felt make up sakkaya, which created a confusing mess without adding any explanatory power.

There are suttas that repeat, that are literally the same 100% in wording except in one paragraph like "I teach sakkaya, the cause of sakkaya, the cesation of sakkaya, and the path to the cessation of sakkaya" in one versus "I teach X, the cause of X, the cesation of X, and the path to the cessation of X" where that paragraph is repeated 5 times with X replaced by one aggregate each time. The 5 aggregates clearly is a fancy sit-in for simply the body in the suttas, as is clear by its usage, especially it being interchangeable with sakkaya--but people, especially scholars, are confused by the 5 aggregates into thinking its more than the body by the fact that 4 aggregates are mental proceses. Whoever split Buddha's term sakkaya (the body) into this scholastic 5 aggregates was a true imbecile who ruined Buddhism. They made it impossible for scholars to see that Buddha was merely saying you're not the body because you're the soul, because despite the 6th aggregate itself being described clearly as merely the 5 senses (eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, etc.), scholars are convinced the 5th aggregate is the soul and therefore the soul itself is no-self. Scholars are a lost cause because they could never even understand the point I just made, much less consider its value. They can't even figure out that the consciousness-aggregate is the 5 senses not the soul, despite it being plainly spelled out in the texts.

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