A Heed to avoid Misinterpretation of the #Kalama #Sutta | Lost in Quotation by Thanissaro Bhikkhu [contd.]
But if you look at the entire passage in the Kalama Sutta, you discover that these quotes give only part of the picture. The Buddha's skepticism toward reliable authorities extends inside as well as out:
“So in this case, Kalamas, don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, *by logical deduction, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability,* or by the thought, 'This contemplative is our teacher.'”
Notice the words [in between asterisks], the ones that usually get dropped from the quote or sloughed over when they're included. When the Buddha says that you can't go by logical deduction, inference, or analogies, he's saying that you can't always trust your sense of reason. When he says that you can't go by agreement through pondering views (i.e., what seems to fit in with what you already believe) or by probability, he's saying that you can't always trust your common sense. And of course, you can't always trust teachers, scriptures, or traditions. So where can you place your trust? You have to put things to the test in your own thoughts, words, and deeds, to see what actually leads to suffering and what leads to its end.
“When you know for yourselves that, 'These dhammas are unskillful; these dhammas are blameworthy; these dhammas are criticized by the wise; these dhammas, when adopted and carried out, lead to harm and to suffering'—then you should abandon them.
When you know for yourselves that, 'These dhammas are skillful; these dhammas are blameless; these dhammas are praised by the wise; these dhammas, when adopted and carried out, lead to welfare and to happiness'—then you should enter and remain in them.”