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In how far might it count as a break of the precept, abstaining from telling what is not true, if one changes the circumstances?

For example here: There might be a question, receiving answers. Afterwards are changes of the questions by telling about the circumstances differently, sometime seemingly slight, does a change counts as a break?

If not having the intention to missinterpret the answerer, does such anyhow possible give ground that they accure missinterpreted?

To include Abhidhamma in the question: What are ones reasons willing to change answers, questions, delete parts, modify... in retelling afterwards if it is unskillful? Why and how could one render change in a skilfulway that would harm in this or that way or make aware of it?

How to go beyound such problems, what whould be a secure solution?

What are the consequences of missinterpreting and changing the true or circumstances to display a differnt picture for ones benefit, harm of others or out of not-knowing and fear (e.g. the four roots of akusala, greed, aversion, delution, fear)

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The ones who are fully established in this Dhamma Path are not an arrogant lot. We all make mistakes in life. For any significant change to take place in our lives we must first develop a sense of humility to admit to our mistakes. It is this knowledge that we all are prone to make mistakes that we say:

Kayena vaca cittena pamadena maya katan, accayam khama me Bhante bhuripanna Tathagata
Kayena vaca cittena pamadena maya katan, accayam khama me Dhamma sandittika akalika
Kayena vaca cittena pamadena maya katan, accayam khama me Sangha supatipanna anuttara

Asking for Forgiveness

If, due to negligence, I have done some wrong, by body, speech or mind, Forgive me of that offence, O Bhante, Perfect one of vast wisdom.

If, due to negligence, I have done some wrong, by body, speech or mind, Forgive me of that offence, O Dhamma, Visible and unaffected by time.

If, due to negligence, I have done some wrong, by body, speech or mind, Forgive me of that offence, O Sangha, Practising well and supreme.

Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!

It is due to this very reason that we contemplate on the following:

”May all living beings forgive me for any misdeeds that I have done to them in this long sansara and accept these merits. May I be free of all debts to all living beings. May all living beings be free from any debts that they have for me, due to any misdeeds that they have done to me. May all living beings, including myself, be free of all debts to each other. May all attain Nibbana.”
Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!

There are many avenues that can lead us astray. But for Nibbana there is only one road. Only one guide. That single road is thinking that “Buddha knows. I do not know” (Keetagiri Sutta). If we regard ourselves as knowing the Dhamma well, we will be of the “I am the one who knows” mindset. Without allowing that to happen we should try to come to the view “I do not know. Only Buddha knows. I will accept it that way”.

“I am the one who knows” can be equated to a Thorn Bush. It is like this. There is a bush of thorns at the bottom of a hill. When it rains fertile soil settles down round the thorn bush after getting washed down from the hill. The soil is fertile but what gets nurtured is the thorn bush.

When it rains fertile soil comes down to the bush of thorns and it grows in a couple of days. Ultimately it becomes too big to be pulled out. Sin is also like that. So we must pull out this thorny bush and plant a good tree on that fertile soil. The biggest thorn bush we have is the notion “I know”.

This is a danger that we have to safeguard against. Therefore, we must always think “Whatever Buddha taught I will do it in that way”. Think that you are the listener. What we want is to get released from Sansaric Sorrow. When you think that way, the idea “I know” will wear off. One will always cherish the company of noble friends. One will get the opportunity to listen to Dhamma well. Yonisomanasikara (thinking wisely as mentioned in Dhamma) will arise. This person will develop the Noble Eight Fold path. This happens solely due to association with sincere friends. We must be humble enough to do so.

The person with defilements is wrapped up in the idea of Self, is egoistic. Also that he is wrapped up in the concept “I know”. Some people struggle to understand this simple truth in depth. That is why it is important to think and retain in your memory the following “I will obey Buddha and conduct myself in the way he wanted us to conduct ourselves. I will not do anything else”.

In this Dhamma Path, we have to still unlearn things that we taught were true. It is mainly because of Acariya Buddhaghosa who has had a strong influence on Theravada Buddhism for the past 1800 years. So we do not know whether the interpretation of the Tipitaka today is the correct version, because of the influence that Buddhaghosa has had on the present day translators.

There is a tendency to translate Tipitaka suttas word-by-word, and because of the inclusion of Sanskrit words, this has led to significant confusion and many contradictions. So we do not know whether we are following Vedic concepts, thinking that they are Dhamma. That is why it is good to have this notion of “I do not know”. It is this knowledge that we all are prone to make mistakes that we say:

Kayena vaca cittena pamadena maya katan, accayam khama me Bhante bhuripanna Tathagata
Kayena vaca cittena pamadena maya katan, accayam khama me Dhamma sandittika akalika
Kayena vaca cittena pamadena maya katan, accayam khama me Sangha supatipanna anuttara
Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!

  • Can you translate the Pali which you quoted? And maybe mention what it is (what its source or title is)? – ChrisW Jun 23 '17 at 10:42
  • Asking for Forgiveness If, due to negligence, I have done some wrong, by body, speech or mind, Forgive me of that offence, O Bhante, Perfect one of vast wisdom. If, due to negligence, I have done some wrong, by body, speech or mind, Forgive me of that offence, O Dhamma, Visible and unaffected by time. If, due to negligence, I have done some wrong, by body, speech or mind, Forgive me of that offence, O Sangha, Practising well and supreme. – Saptha Visuddhi Jun 23 '17 at 11:20
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For example here: There might be a question, receiving answers. Afterwards are changes of the questions by telling about the circumstances differently, sometime seemingly slight, does a change counts as a break?

Of course this is not false speech.

Often it is difficult to write an accurate question. After an answer is given, the questioner may become more clear in their mind about what they really intend to ask. Therefore, the questioner modifies the question.

The precept about honest speech is for not creating confusion, harm & deception in important relationships, such as a husband lying to his wife; or politicians in the world lying about fake terrorist acts so they can start a fake war; or fake monks lying about being a real monk.

However, the example given here about changing questions & answers, after reflection or reconsideration, is not false speech because it is not harming any one.

  • If Dhammadhuta would not held this vuew, he would not do it. That is why wise people are never angry when people do wrong: "if they would know, they would not do." And so not modify or even seek for punishing. For some is really not to help. – Samana Johann Jun 18 '17 at 2:25
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The condition for lying are:

i) The statement must be untrue.

ii) There must be an intention to deceive.

iii) An effort must be made to deceive.

iv) The other person must know the meaning of what is expressed.

Unless at the time of writing there is intention to deceive, then there is no breaking Sila due to later changes / editing in the question in a forum this like.

People make edits in question to make it clearer if they think the context of the question is misunderstood. This may invalidate answers. But this is not lying as there is not intention to deceive. Perhaps the reader will understand that the answer does not correspond to the newer question. Also if edit history is preserved, sites like this, you can cross check what and answer relates to.

Also there might edits due to other reasons by other parties. As long as there is not intention to deceive or misrepresent there will be no lying or unskillfulness.

Also when one is creating, editing content, one should be reasonably confident and thorough with what is being said. Otherwise invariantly you might misrepresenting the Buddha's teaching which also would be unskillful. Also when editing other people's content you should try to understand their intention so the editing makes it more clear than change meaning or what is said.

Also it would be wholesome if the edits are to make the content clear and more organised. Also correcting possible and obvious errors and omissions, spelling and grammar issues, etc.

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