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Nirvana is not a Place — 5 Comments

  1. An excellent explanation- I think the example of how it is like what happens to light after a wall is removed makes things very clear – I’ve never heard it explained this way before. Last year I was investigating what some of these new non-duality gurus have to say (people like Jed McKenna) and it was certainly interesting. There seemed to be this idea that there is some conflict between non-duality and Buddhism, but perhaps this is not the case at all; at least not with Theravada anyway.

  2. Yes, I gave a talk at the World Budhist University a while ago about Nibbaana and made the same point that it is not a place, but rather a way of experiencing – experience without greed, hatred and delusion. I tried also to make the point that it was not a “type” of experience.

    One thing I don’t agree with is speaking of the “wheel of *life* and death”, but rather the “wheel of *birth* and death”. 🙂 In the suttas you can read the Buddha saying he {and other arahats} had ended birth and death, but obviously he {and they} still had life.

  3. ‘Middleagedmuaythai’ hehe. How’d you come up with that one Paul?
    Nibbana is a tricky concept. Thanissaro’s article is pretty good, but he has several more peices on the topic on the Access to Insight website. This one provides all the quotations : http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dhamma/sacca/sacca3/nibbana.html

    Wheel of Birth and Death is better than ‘Life and Death’ yes 🙂

    I might mention that in the Dhammakaya school of Theravada, Nirvana is again spoken of as being ‘outside’ of Samsara, but still a definite destination where arahants reside.

    • Hopefully 🙂 Although, I don’t really see what’s so bad about the concept of nibbana as a realm, so long as it spurs one on to practise. Anyway, next we have the question of ‘where’ arahants go after enlightenment.