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115 —What are you doing?—Answering your question. 116 —Can you explain consciousness?—No. —Then how can you assume that it starts at birth and stops at death? 117 The Suttas are perfectly intelligible, but what they describe is hard to grasp. If, then, you do not follow the Suttas it is a mistake to run to the Abhidhamma Pi†aka (or the Commentaries) for illumination: nobody would dream of trying to understand the theory of relativity from a school primer of arithmetic, yet that theory is not unintelligible—it is not easy, that is all. 118 The Commentaries are not to be rejected on principle: they are to be rejected if they are seen to be inadequate or misleading. And this will happen only if some understanding of the Suttas is gained in spite of the Commentaries. 119 J.-P. Sartre—W. Ross Ashby—J.B. Rhine. Between them they hold the key—a curious trinity! Consciousness—Feedback—Psychokinesis & Clairvoyance: never one without the others.18 120 A saint, by popular definition, is one who successfully resists temptation. But to resist temptation one must take good care to keep temptation continuously before one. And since to resist temptation is painful, what else is a saint but one devoted to self-torture? Perhaps this is why saints, especially in books, spend so much of their time reforming whores (who are certainly entitled to their usual fee for services rendered). 121 ‘Qu’est-ce nos principes naturels, sinon nos principes accoutumés? Une différente coutume donne d’autres principes naturels. Cela se voit par expérience. Les pères craignent que l’amour naturel des enfants ne s’éfface. Quelle est donc cette nature sujette à être effacée? La coutume est une seconde nature qui détermine la première. Pourquoi la coutume n’est-ell pas naturelle? J’ai bien peur que cette nature ne soit elle-même qu’une première coutume, comme la coutume est une seconde nature.’19—Pascal. This statement, if true, is enough to establish rebirth 18.  [This note is crossed out.] 19.  [What are our natural principles … (see translation at Sketch, p. 350) … is a second nature.


Early Writings (Seeking the Path - Ñāṇavīra Thera)  

Part B includes two early essays (Nibbana and Anatta and Sketch for a Proof of Rebirth) as well as notes from a Commonplace Book and Margina...