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《菩提田》

 

BODHI FIELD

佛陀時代印度的六種外道及其析偽
The Six Major Heterodox Philosophical Schools in India during the Time
of the Buddha and the Buddhist Refutations of Their Doctrine

西尼 文 by Sini

前期提示:佛教與這六種外道之比較。

此人之惑見與欲望如脫韁之馬。佛為立「中道」,擯去諸家不正見。佛經之中,斷常二見,遠離中道,故屢屢被斥。

不正見可略分五類:
1.身見──執身是我。
2.邊見──不合中道。
3.戒禁取見──執著條規與形式。
4.見取見──教條、武斷、我執深。
5.邪見──不合正法之見。

上述六種外道,皆落入此五類,其他派別或一或多,亦落入此五類。本文下一節,對此六外道,將略說佛教之回應--看佛法是如何從教義上與哲理上判教;看又如何於當時之種種惑見稠林之中,既不贊成無益苦行,亦不沉緬感官之樂,執不生不滅,不斷不常之道。

言萬物皆有是為偏;言萬物皆無亦為偏。去此二偏,世尊教行中道。

行佛道時,正見正知,重要攸關。宣公上人言 :「行好正見,就能裨益心性;行不好,或者有偏見,那就造惡業了。」一般說來,「見」之一字,於佛教中,多指錯見,除有前加一「正」字。

Samannaphala-sutta 中,是佛與 Magadha 的 Aja-tashatru 王的對話錄。佛以妙言,巧答 Ajatashatru 王,於他人處所得不到的答案。問題是:「身入沙門,結什麼可見之果 ? 」Ajatashatru 王已先問過了這六外道師,但無一切題之回答,各說其是。耆那教專說其修行,沒有人講得出結什麼可見之果。 Ajivika 教說,人之哀樂由命不由人,七大為主無奈何。 Lokayata 教說,人無不死,愚人智者,其終無二。不可知宗者迴避問題,說即使他知道,他也不回答。 Ajatashatru 王說這是笨蛋中的笨蛋,無知中的無知。聽 Ajatashatru 王這麼一說,佛作此回答:「佛讓 Ajatashatru 王先同意無論是奴隸是農夫,一入沙門,身份頓異。此後,繼續修行,得諸自由,得諸禪樂。」 Ajatashatru 王說這確實是人人看得見的結果。佛續言敘沙門之修學,之歷諸禪定,而悟四聖諦,而終斷諸外漏,而得了生死。 Ajatashatru 王承認這些也都是人人看得見的結果,一層比一層好。 Ajatashatru 王遂於佛前懺悔其囚父王頻比娑 (Bimbisara) 王之罪;懺其為穩坐皇位,餓斃父王。他請佛許他作在家信徒。

什麼是可知的

佛以自己的努力而悟道。他既不說自己得力於神明或其他外力,也不說他恪守任何教宗或聖典。他所教的是基於自己的經驗。從這一點上說,佛之所教,是經驗派的。對於有人堅持未經證實的權威,佛陀在以下的對話中說明他的立場。

有一十六歲的婆羅門少年,名 Kapathika ,問佛說佛是如何看待婆羅門教的古聖經的。這些古聖經中有如此一說:「獨此是真理,其他皆謬理。」佛則問他,婆羅門種之中,是否有人宣稱他已明白,他已洞見這一真理--「獨此是真理,其他皆謬理。」甚至上溯七代,直至此真理的原作者。婆羅門少年 Kapathika 說:「沒有。」接著佛陀將婆羅門的這一種情況作一譬喻--譬喻為一群盲人排長龍,人人抓住前面一個人。最後佛勸此少年:「如是明白人,不作此定論:獨此是真理,其他皆謬理。」他可以
說:「我認為…」--那就是維護真理了。但是不能說我信仰這個,而把其他的就都一棒子打死。

佛教中,見執是一種枷鎖,一種障礙,甚至執著正見也是如此。佛說:「以執著故,輕慢同倫。明者觀之,形同枷鎖。」這就是為什麼佛把佛教比成是一隻舟筏--可用,不可執著(不能用筏過河後,又揹著筏走)。法尚應捨,何況非法。佛批評盲信,但他不否認通過誠信一個人可以汲取知識。在佛看來,正見來自二處:(一)他人之證言。(二)正確的思索。另外一組確認三種獲取智慧的模式是:(一)聽聞的智慧。(二)思索的智慧。(三)修行的智慧。這三種智慧是相互依存,不相排斥的。這有一個明確的次第--聞、思、修。

許多優婆尼薩派的修定觀者與其他的教宗都稱有特異功能,並且將他們的玄而上學的經驗建築於這上面。但唯物論者大倒其說。他們全盤否定瑜珈直觀與特異功能。眾家偏教之中,佛取中道。佛不全否認直觀、神通、瑜珈幻術,但他強調要有限制。神通對佛而言,只是一種有限的知識;不是所有問題的萬能藥,更不能了知究竟真實。是途徑,而非目的。以神通眼觀天堂,目睹地獄種種情景,就率下結論,許多瑜珈靜修者倒因錯果,不明業報。人之知識,很容易受個人喜惡著色。因此,這些未悟之人難於洞觀事理。佛悉知各種知識來源的局限性:推理、感知、超感知(亦名神通),但佛陀不因這些局限性而變成一個不可知論者,進而否認各種知識。他所批評者,不外那些執偏為全者--只認可一種模式,而否認其他模式。

待續

From last issue: Buddhism contrasted with the six heterodox schools. 

The confused views and desires of such a person would multiply unchecked. In establishing his Middle Way, the Buddha rejected all these erroneous views. Eternalism and annihilationism are seen as the extreme views that are refuted time and again in the Buddhist Sutras.

In general, false views can be grouped in the following five categories:

1.  The view of having a self and personality. (Or, in Chinese, the view of having a body, taking the body as one’s self.)
2.  One-sided views--extreme views that do not accord with the Middle Way.
3.  Clinging to the efficacy of rites; attachment to rules and rituals. (Or, in Chinese, the view of prohibitive morality.)
4.  Views of grasping at views--dogmatism, overbearingness, clinging to one's own views.
5.  Deviant views--views that do not accord with proper Dharma.

All of the six schools mentioned above fall into the fifth group, and one or several of the others as well. The next section of this paper outlines the basic teachings and philosophical positions that provide the Buddhist answer to the views of these six heterodox schools. In the contemporary jungle of views the Buddha found a Middle Way that sided neither with unwholesome asceticism nor sensual indulgence; neither with annihilationism nor eternalism; neither with existence nor non-existence: 

To say that everything exists is an extreme, to say nothing exists is another extreme; rejecting both extremes, the Blessed One teaches a middle position.

While cultivating the Buddhist path, having proper views and proper knowledge is vitally important. Master Hua: “If you make proper use of views, they are an aid to your mind and nature. But if you use them incorrectly, if you have biases, then you can create bad karma.” Generally, however, in Buddhism the term ‘views’ tends to imply ‘wrong views,’ unless it is predicated by ‘right’ or ‘proper.’

The Samannaphala-sutta, a dialogue between Buddha and King Ajatashatru of Magadha, illustrates well the Buddha's superior answer to a question that the king had failed to get satisfactorily answered by other teachers. The question was: What is the visible result, if any, of being a shramana? Ajatashatru had already put this question to the six heterodox teachers, but all their replies had been irrelevant. Each teacher had advocated his own special doctrines and theories, the Jaina had mentioned his practice, but none was able to come up with any results. The Ajivika said that it doesn't matter what one does, since one will experience happiness and unhappiness according to fate, and after all nothing can really happen to the seven elements. The Lokayata said that people all die anyway, the end is the same for fool and wise man alike. The agnostic evaded the question and said he wouldn't give an answer even if he had one. Ajatashatru called him the most foolish and ignorant of all the teachers he met. After having listened to the king's account the Buddha offered his reply. The Buddha got the king to agree that, for a slave or a peasant, becoming a shramana would greatly improve his status. After this result, if he continued cultivating, he would experience the freedom and happiness of meditation. The king agreed that this too is a visible result. The Buddha continued his description of a monk's training, progressing through various meditations to the understanding of the Four Truths, and finally putting an end to all outflows and ending birth and death. Ajatashatru agreed that these all are visible results, each better than the last. At the end of the dialogue Ajatashatru repented of his evil deed of having imprisoned his father, king Bimbisara, and of having starved him to death in order to secure the throne for himself; he also asked to become a lay follower of the Buddha.

What Can Be Known

The Buddha achieved enlightenment by his own efforts; he claimed no inspiration from a god or other external power. Neither did he adhere to any tradition or sacred scripture. His teachings were based on his own experience, so in that sense they can be called empirical. The following dialogue shows the Buddha's attitude towards intolerant insisting on the authority of an unverified tradition.

A 16-year old Brahmin youth named Kapathika once asked the Buddha his opinion about the ancient holy scriptures of the Brahmins, of which they come to the absolute conclusion: ‘This alone is Truth, and everything else is false.’ The Buddha asked him whether among the Brahmins there was a single one who claimed that he personally knew and saw that ‘this alone is Truth, and everything else is false,’ even going back seven generations, or to the original authors. Kapathika frankly anwered, ‘No.’ Then the Buddha compared the state of the Brahmins to a line of blind men, each one holding on to the preceding one. Finally he advised the Brahmins, “It is not proper for a wise man who maintains truth to come to the conclusion: ‘This alone is Truth, and everything else is false.’” One can say "I believe this"--that is maintaining truth. But on the basis of one's faith one cannot dismiss everything else as false.

In Buddhism, attachment to views is a fetter, an obstruction--even attachment to correct views. The Buddha said: "To be attached to one thing and to look down upon other things as inferior--this the wise men call a fetter." This is why the Buddha compared his teaching to a raft, to be used but not to be clung to. Even that which is Dharma has to be discarded; how much the more so that which is not Dharma. The Buddha is critical towards blind faith, but he doesn’t deny that one can obtain valid knowledge through faith. According to the Buddha, right views can be obtained from two primary sources: (1) the testimony of another, and (2) proper reflection. Another grouping identifies three modes of attaining wisdom: (1) the wisdom of hearing or listening; (2) the wisdom of thinking or reflecting; and (3) the wisdom of practicing or cultivating. These three modes are interdependent, not exclusive of each other. There is a clear progression: First one listens, then considers the teachings one has heard, and finally puts them into practice in one's own life.   

Many meditators of Upanishadic and other traditions claimed extrasensory powers and based their metaphysical theories on such experiences. As a reaction against these teachings, the materialists totally denied the validity of yogic intuition and extrasensory perception. The Buddha followed a middle path among these extremes. He did not completely deny the validity of intuition and yogic trances, but emphasized their restrictions. To the Buddha extrasensory powers were a limited means of knowledge; they could not answer all questions, much less reveal ultimate reality. They were a means to the end, not an end in themselves. Drawing hasty conclusions of what they had seen with their powers in the heavens or the hells, many yogis totally misunderstood the nature of cause and effect involved in these retributions. Human knowledge tends to be colored by individual likes and dislikes, and due to this unenlightened people are incapable of seeing things as they really are. The Buddha was aware of the shortcomings of different sources of knowledge--reason, sense perception, and extrasensory perception--but this does not make him a sceptic who would deny all possibility of knowledge. He simply criticized those who considered a certain mode of knowledge the only valid one.  

To be continued

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