Do you believe in Mara

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Do you believe in Mara?

It is a real devil who harasses those who try to enlighten
6
38%
It is just a metaphor for our own low mental states
8
50%
I believe in 2 but not sure why Mara is shown as a real devil in suttas
2
13%
 
Total votes : 16

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:55 am

BlueLotus wrote:I
If Mara is symbol for our own craving how did he appear to enlightened ones? Doesn't make sense.
And how do the arahants handle Mara when he appears?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
User avatar
tiltbillings
 
Posts: 19763
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby BlueLotus » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:31 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
BlueLotus wrote:I
If Mara is symbol for our own craving how did he appear to enlightened ones? Doesn't make sense.
And how do the arahants handle Mara when he appears?


They handle it quite well. BUT if Mara is just bad mental states how can bad mental states arise in enlightened minds? They have no bad mental states like desire and anger.

Another thing is Mara is once in Ven moggallana's belly. Doesn't make sense to say bad mental states came to his belly. :jumping: It is funny anyway.
User avatar
BlueLotus
 
Posts: 276
Joined: Mon Aug 29, 2011 7:46 am

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Oct 09, 2012 1:52 pm

BlueLotus wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
BlueLotus wrote:I
If Mara is symbol for our own craving how did he appear to enlightened ones? Doesn't make sense.
And how do the arahants handle Mara when he appears?


They handle it quite well. BUT if Mara is just bad mental states how can bad mental states arise in enlightened minds? They have no bad mental states like desire and anger.
But they have bodies and conditioning.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
User avatar
tiltbillings
 
Posts: 19763
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby BlueLotus » Tue Oct 09, 2012 1:55 pm

tiltbillings wrote:But they have bodies and conditioning.


Can you please explain what you say more?
User avatar
BlueLotus
 
Posts: 276
Joined: Mon Aug 29, 2011 7:46 am

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby LonesomeYogurt » Tue Oct 09, 2012 4:12 pm

BlueLotus wrote:Maybe the sutta are not completely rights as devarupan said.

It's not that the suttas aren't right. All the suttas are "right" and "true." It's just that they aren't always meant to be taken literally.

Take the Buddha's birth, for example. In a few suttas, it says that he walked immediately after birth and that lotus flowers grew up underneath each footstep. Do you think that really happened? Probably not, but that doesn't mean that the sutta is lying, trying to convince you that it actually happened. No, it's far more about using metaphor and myth to show us how pure and beautiful the Blessed One was. The question isn't "Did Mara really appear as a real demon to these people?" The question is "How did these people deal with the temptation?" That's what is important, not the truth value of a certain demon.

Does that make sense? The suttas aren't lying to you, they're just not interested in being a science textbook.
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.
User avatar
LonesomeYogurt
 
Posts: 900
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:24 pm
Location: America

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby manas » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:08 am

Hi,

my preferred option was not there for me to vote on: "I think Mara is both metaphorical AND, sometimes, a literal being as described in some suttas".

:anjali:
User avatar
manas
 
Posts: 2145
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:04 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Do you believe in Mara

Postby Yana » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:31 am

hi,

I think Mara as my own personal defilement but am not sure if Mara exists as real devil. But if Mara does exist i think getting rid of my own defilement is still more important. :anjali:
Life is preparing for Death
Yana
 
Posts: 397
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:45 am

Previous

Return to General Theravāda discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests