Thursday, February 14, 2019

MN 117 definition of vitakka comes from abhidhamma, not EBT

♦ 565. “savitakkaṃ savicāran”ti
“Accompanied by initial application, accompanied by sustained application” means:
atthi vitakko, atthi vicāro.
There is initial application; there is sustained application.
♦ tattha katamo vitakko?
Therein what is initial application?
yo takko vitakko saṅkappo
That which is mentation, thinking, thought,
appanā byappanā
fixation, focussing,
cetaso abhiniropanā sammāsaṅkappo —
application of the mind, right thought.
ayaṃ vuccati “vitakko”.
This is called initial application.
♦ tattha katamo vicāro?
Therein what is sustained application?
yo cāro vicāro anuvicāro upavicāro
That which is searching, examining, constant examining,
cittassa anusandhanatā anupekkhanatā —
scrutinizing, constant connection of (and) constant inspection by consciousness.
ayaṃ vuccati vicāro.
This is called sustained application.

almost exactly the same as (vaci-sankharo only difference) :

cetaso abhiniropanā
mind being implanted, [inculcate, apply, fixed]

The Real Story

B. Analayo throws red herrings at MN 111 to try to discredit it and repeatedly remind us MN 111 is late non-EBT, but t MN 117,  the only pali sutta basis for his mistranslation of vitakka, in EBMS:
* he deliberately fails to mention the sutta in the book, depite its crucial role as the only sutta that supports his mistranslation of vitakka
* he fails to mention MN 117 is late non-EBT, and straight from Abhidhamma (surely the motivating reason for omitting MN 117 from EBMS)
* both B. Analayo and B. Sujato disingenuously avoid the elephant in the room, by not explaining why the only sutta support (MN 117) for their mistranslation of vitakka, actually comes from non EBT abhidhamma, even though they both purport to interpret suttas from an EBT perspective. Instead, they offer fallacious arguments, weak evidence and non-evidence from EBT sutta, and fail to adquately explain the strong EBT evidence that opposes their view.

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