the great rebirth debate

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Spiny Norman
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Spiny Norman » Fri Feb 21, 2014 12:56 pm

chownah wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote:Maybe his enlightenment was a hallucination too. ;)


I think it is reasonable if you want to consider this too, but it is not so directly on topic as considering his rebirth memories.
chownah


I think it's fine to question these things, and the authenticity of the suttas, etc, what bemuses me is how selective people can be about which bits they question.
"I ride tandem with the random, Things don't run the way I planned them, In the humdrum."
Peter Gabriel lyric

visitin
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby visitin » Fri Feb 21, 2014 1:52 pm

Spiny Norman wrote:
chownah wrote:It seems that the Buddha only slept a couple of hours a night so I think it is reasonable to at least consider the possibility that his rebirth memories might be hallucinations.
trollnah


Maybe his enlightenment was a hallucination too. ;)


Agreed! Instructions provided in "Aparihani Sutta", if followed earnestly, will induce such hallucinations.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

chownah
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby chownah » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:07 pm

Spiny Norman wrote:
chownah wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote:Maybe his enlightenment was a hallucination too. ;)


I think it is reasonable if you want to consider this too, but it is not so directly on topic as considering his rebirth memories.
chownah


I think it's fine to question these things, and the authenticity of the suttas, etc, what bemuses me is how selective people can be about which bits they question.

Yeah, I know what you are saying......personally, I question all of it from time to time.
chownah

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Mkoll
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Mkoll » Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:27 pm

visitin wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote:
chownah wrote:It seems that the Buddha only slept a couple of hours a night so I think it is reasonable to at least consider the possibility that his rebirth memories might be hallucinations.
trollnah


Maybe his enlightenment was a hallucination too. ;)


Agreed! Instructions provided in "Aparihani Sutta", if followed earnestly, will induce such hallucinations.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Now, I know I'm unclear in what you're trying to say. :tongue:

Can you expand on that claim please?
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

Nikaya35
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Nikaya35 » Mon Apr 21, 2014 3:29 am

There is 2 points that can be discussed in the rebirth topic. 1) are karma and rebirth part of the Buddha teachings according to the sutras? 2) do you believe in rebirth ? Or its rebirth true or not ? The answer of the first question is a very easy one. Both doctrines of karma and rebirth are part of the Buddha teachings according to the nikayas and the goal of classical buddhism is to stop the circle of literal rebirths ( samsara ). Do you believe in rebirth ? I would say yes. There isn't any empirical evidence of karma and rebirth being true. So why I believe in this? Because I have faith in the Buddha. One can't be a buddhist without any faith or confidence in the Buddha message. I don't know by direct experience the truth of karma and rebirth. The practice of buddhism like any religion is a gamble. We can't know for sure if death is the end . Atleast most of us can't. It's really ridiculous to argue using the nikayas that the Buddha doesn't teach karma and rebirth in a literal sense. The same rebirth debate is in another buddhist site . It's fine to be skeptical of karma and rebirth . It's bullshit to argue to death that both doctrines aren't part of the Buddha teachings.

chownah
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby chownah » Tue Apr 22, 2014 3:48 am

"Then, householder, you should train yourself in this way: 'I won't cling to this world; my consciousness will not be dependent on this world... I won't cling to the world beyond; my consciousness will not be dependent on the world beyond.' That's how you should train yourself."
From MN143


chownah

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Ron-The-Elder » Sat Apr 26, 2014 4:56 pm

= SpinyNorman "I think it's fine to question these things, and the authenticity of the suttas, etc, what bemuses me is how selective people can be about which bits they question."


=Chownah "Yeah, I know what you are saying......personally, I question all of it from time to time.


The questioning arises from inexperience, failure to experiment and to practice what has been studied and learned, or at least a lack of any direct memory of rebirth. Additionally, we have a tendency to forget things when exposed to severe trauma. Death and birth are both in fact traumatic no matter what the mechanisms. For that reason I avoid discussions regarding post-mortem rebirth, which based on my experience ( or lack there-of) cannot be proven, at least not by me, and stick to more local and recent experiences such as rebirth of mind contents as thoughts, words, attitudes, convictions and intentions for example; death and rebirth of somatic cells in our bodies, which can be directly observed under the microscope. Rebirth of convictions from experience as life's facts are revealed (changing our minds!) is perhaps the easiest for me to see during ongoing mindful observations :tongue:

As for faith, Buddha has been so correct on so many fronts that I have personally developed a deep faith in his teachings. From my own practice of validation and verification, following Buddha's advice in his "Charter of Free Inquiry", I have found his avisories always to be spot-on! Therefore, what I cannot validate and verify now in this life, I give "credit", based upon Buddha's past successes. :bow:
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby TheNoBSBuddhist » Sat Apr 26, 2014 7:25 pm

Ron-The-Elder wrote:The questioning arises from inexperience, failure to experiment and to practice what has been studied and learned, or at least a lack of any direct memory of rebirth. Additionally, we have a tendency to forget things when exposed to severe trauma. Death and birth are both in fact traumatic no matter what the mechanisms. For that reason I avoid discussions regarding post-mortem rebirth, which based on my experience ( or lack there-of) cannot be proven, at least not by me, and stick to more local and recent experiences such as rebirth of mind contents as thoughts, words, attitudes, convictions and intentions for example; death and rebirth of somatic cells in our bodies, which can be directly observed under the microscope. Rebirth of convictions from experience as life's facts are revealed (changing our minds!) is perhaps the easiest for me to see during ongoing mindful observations :tongue:

As for faith, Buddha has been so correct on so many fronts that I have personally developed a deep faith in his teachings. From my own practice of validation and verification, following Buddha's advice in his "Charter of Free Inquiry", I have found his avisories always to be spot-on! Therefore, what I cannot validate and verify now in this life, I give "credit", based upon Buddha's past successes. :bow:



:goodpost: :clap:


:namaste:
:namaste:

You will not be punished FOR your 'emotions'; you will be punished BY your 'emotions'.



Image

Pay attention, simplify, and (Meditation instruction in a nutshell) "Mind - the Gap."
‘Absit invidia verbo’ - may ill-will be absent from the word. And mindful of that, if I don't respond, this may be why....

david.sojourn
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby david.sojourn » Tue May 06, 2014 7:53 pm

If you are debating, you are not practicing anything but running the mind and the mouth.

Nobody who debates rebirth will ever get closer to understanding it.

It must be understood through Stream Entry.

The modern world wants to Analyze everything. Intellectually "Figure it out".

It will never work.

You will debate and debate, and just when you're close, plop, someone will have a new argument. Some people will leave the debate stuck to their own notions (Conventions, attachment to ego), and others will only get more and more confused.

My advice is to practice. You won't find anything in this thread except more manure to clutter your mind.

Rebirth cannot be analytically grasped. You must work toward enlightenment before that kind of information is revealed to you. When you get it, you will get it. And when you don't get it, you will just argue, paradoxically, forever and ever, and ever--Yet not be a single mindful step any closer to your goal.

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Mkoll
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Mkoll » Tue May 06, 2014 8:03 pm

david.sojourn wrote:If you are debating, you are not practicing anything but running the mind and the mouth.

Nobody who debates rebirth will ever get closer to understanding it.

It must be understood through Stream Entry.

The modern world wants to Analyze everything. Intellectually "Figure it out".

It will never work.

You will debate and debate, and just when you're close, plop, someone will have a new argument. Some people will leave the debate stuck to their own notions (Conventions, attachment to ego), and others will only get more and more confused.

My advice is to practice. You won't find anything in this thread except more manure to clutter your mind.

Rebirth cannot be analytically grasped. You must work toward enlightenment before that kind of information is revealed to you. When you get it, you will get it. And when you don't get it, you will just argue, paradoxically, forever and ever, and ever--Yet not be a single mindful step any closer to your goal.


Not everyone is as mature in mind as you believe you are. This kind of talk may help people clear up some of their questions they have surrounding rebirth. You might have answered those questions for yourself in the past. But for others, this is all new. Calling it all manure is pretty one-sided, dontcha think?
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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Aloka
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Aloka » Thu May 15, 2014 5:35 pm

david.sojourn wrote: You won't find anything in this thread except more manure to clutter your mind.



You've read all 252 pages, then ?

:)

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Ron-The-Elder » Sun May 18, 2014 3:45 am

david sojourn wrote: " You won't find anything in this thread except more manure to clutter your mind."


Reminds me of the words we used to sing to the tune of "The Colonel Bogey March":

Bull Sh*t, it makes the grass grow green!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qfAvoELaktc
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby TheNoBSBuddhist » Sun May 18, 2014 8:11 am

Thank you for that. I always knew I had my uses....

:jumping:

:namaste:
:namaste:

You will not be punished FOR your 'emotions'; you will be punished BY your 'emotions'.



Image

Pay attention, simplify, and (Meditation instruction in a nutshell) "Mind - the Gap."
‘Absit invidia verbo’ - may ill-will be absent from the word. And mindful of that, if I don't respond, this may be why....

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Ron-The-Elder » Sun May 18, 2014 10:43 pm

TheNoBSBuddhist wrote: "Thank you for that. I always knew I had my uses...."


Every being walking The Earth will eventually be consumed by the corrupters and then our brothers and sisters, the plants.

B.S. is nothing more than high quality fertilizer. Plants love it! :tongue:
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

callmetheseeker
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Rebirth? Really?

Postby callmetheseeker » Mon Jun 23, 2014 5:22 am

I've been a Buddhist for nearly 6 years and the idea of rebirth seemed perfectly normal to me, even before coming into contact with Buddhism. Lately I've become confused, though. Probably because I don't meditate so much, or at all. I feel that death seems like falling into nothingness. Even if there is rebirth, we can't experience like in the movie Groundhog Day. Why can't we be like: 'Okay, I screwed up my last life, I shouldn't have done this, I should've done that. This life I'll try to do better'?? Wouldn't it be easier? I mean, of course it wouldn't be necessary for us to remember everything from the last life, just a continuation of consciouness would be nice. 'I've died now, wonder how my new life is gonna be....' Then after a bit of early infancy thin memory, it could be... 'Oh, cool. Now I'm French and have two siblings. My parents seem nice.' Does anyone follow me? Why can't it be like Groundhog Day? Things would be kind of awesome. Or maybe not? If that was the case, we could become messed up from so much memories, so much lives... I don't know, I just don't want to fall into the nothing.

LXNDR
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Re: Rebirth? Really?

Postby LXNDR » Mon Jun 23, 2014 5:32 am

i guess this way nobody would have developed wisdom, you would just learn the correct responses to a limited array of challenges, which means in different circumstances your skills would be useless

when life ever changes there's a possibility and even necessity to develop universal and unconditioned wisdom, so you can respond adequately to any stimulus, basically you learn a principle and not a set of correct responses

your interaction with reality must be creative and not automatic

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manas
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Re: Rebirth? Really?

Postby manas » Mon Jun 23, 2014 6:10 am

Hi cmts,

personally I think it's better that we do get a fresh start each time, and don't recall our previous life. Even just recalling all the pain and distress of this current life is hard enough, without having to also remember the last life as well.

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Mkoll
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Re: Rebirth? Really?

Postby Mkoll » Mon Jun 23, 2014 6:45 am

SN 56.11 wrote:Now this, monks, is the noble truth of stress: Birth is stressful, aging is stressful, death is stressful; sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair are stressful; association with the unbeloved is stressful, separation from the loved is stressful, not getting what is wanted is stressful. In short, the five clinging-aggregates are stressful.


Also, you could try re-examining your conception of death as "falling into the nothing".
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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TheNoBSBuddhist
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Re: Rebirth? Really?

Postby TheNoBSBuddhist » Mon Jun 23, 2014 6:56 am

callmetheseeker wrote:I've been a Buddhist for nearly 6 years and the idea of rebirth seemed perfectly normal to me, even before coming into contact with Buddhism. Lately I've become confused, though. Probably because I don't meditate so much, or at all. I feel that death seems like falling into nothingness. Even if there is rebirth, we can't experience like in the movie Groundhog Day. Why can't we be like: 'Okay, I screwed up my last life, I shouldn't have done this, I should've done that. This life I'll try to do better'?? Wouldn't it be easier? I mean, of course it wouldn't be necessary for us to remember everything from the last life, just a continuation of consciouness would be nice. 'I've died now, wonder how my new life is gonna be....' Then after a bit of early infancy thin memory, it could be... 'Oh, cool. Now I'm French and have two siblings. My parents seem nice.' Does anyone follow me? Why can't it be like Groundhog Day? Things would be kind of awesome. Or maybe not? If that was the case, we could become messed up from so much memories, so much lives... I don't know, I just don't want to fall into the nothing.


You're confusing Re-Birth with reincarnation... or rather, wishing re-birth WAS reincarnation, which of course, is quite different...
We do not consider that there is a soul which transmigrates from this place 'to the next' but in Mahayana/Tibetan Buddhism, those considered to be enlightened are able to reincarnate into Tulkus their followers are then charged with finding.

I will tell you how it is with me...

Re-birth is s sticky subject.
Even if it is one of the Buddha's teachings, many people feel more comfortable taking his teaching and applying it to the 'here and now' rather than focusing on it being an event which will take place at the moment of your death.
I will confess, I do not know. I joke with my friends that I will have "work in progress" carved on my head-stone... But this much I do know:
I am a different person every day.
I look at old photographs of when I was a child, and it is the same person, but of course, it isn't.
Over time, I have both physically changed, and of course, mentally I have developed and evolved, and become the person writing this now.
But later on, I may look back on this post, and consider, "Did I write that nonsense? Apparently!"

Every day, I open my eyes, and I am reborn.
The thoughts and actions I performed yesterday no longer exist; they are gone, consigned only to memory, and even that is patchy, because the mind releases and forgets the irrelevant...And so much of how we live, is irrelevant...

The truth of the matter is, you have to make THIS life count.
You have to consign events to memory, but make them meaningful.
You have to live every moment as if it were your last.

Look at this phrase...

I don't know, I just don't want to fall into the nothing.


Do you want to fall into nothing, depressed, morose, concerned about a possible next time, with a mind that says "I wasted so much time wasting time..." or do you want to fall into nothing, serene, content with what you have done, and with a peaceful detached mind that says "if this is it, at least I did my best!".....?

You are constantly creating 'a new life' for yourself with every thought, every action, every inter-action.... the trick is to make sure that each phase leaves you smiling and content.

Live Life as if you ARE coming back. And consider that return, and how wonderful it will be, if you can leave THIS existence with a contented, satisfied smile on your face....
Quit thinking, start doing.

You think you have time - you cold not be more mistaken.


In Theravada, we do not have bardos, Tulkus or reincarnation as a focal point of our practice.
:namaste:

You will not be punished FOR your 'emotions'; you will be punished BY your 'emotions'.



Image

Pay attention, simplify, and (Meditation instruction in a nutshell) "Mind - the Gap."
‘Absit invidia verbo’ - may ill-will be absent from the word. And mindful of that, if I don't respond, this may be why....

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lyndon taylor
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Re: Rebirth? Really?

Postby lyndon taylor » Mon Jun 23, 2014 7:50 am

actually reincarnation and rebirth are simply two different translations of the same pali word, the reason therevada translators use rebirth is to distinguish it from the hindu concept of reincarnation, which they oppose.
18 years ago I made one of the most important decisions of my life and entered a local Cambodian Buddhist Temple as a temple boy and, for only 3 weeks, an actual Therevada Buddhist monk. I am not a scholar, great meditator, or authority on Buddhism, but Buddhism is something I love from the Bottom of my heart. It has taught me sobriety, morality, peace, and very importantly that my suffering is optional, and doesn't have to run my life. I hope to give back what little I can to the Buddhist community that has so generously given me so much, sincerely former monk John


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