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the great rebirth debate - Page 11 - Dhamma Wheel

the great rebirth debate

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Mawkish1983
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 2:51 pm


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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby clw_uk » Tue Feb 24, 2009 3:40 pm

Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

nathan
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby nathan » Tue Feb 24, 2009 11:01 pm

But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}

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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby DarkDream » Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:19 am


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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:28 am


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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Feb 25, 2009 7:40 am


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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Wed Feb 25, 2009 8:45 am

(of Dependent Origination) by Mahāsī Sayādaw

Beyond Reasoning and Speculation

When the Buddha was first considering whether or not to teach, he thought, “This truth that I have realised is very profound. Though it is sublime and conducive to inner peace, it is hard to understand. Since it is subtle and not accessible to mere intellect and logic, it can be realised only by the wise.” Great thinkers from all cultures have thought deeply about freedom from the misery of aging, disease, and death, but such freedom would mean nibbāna, which is beyond the scope of reason and intellect. It can be realised only by practising the right method of insight meditation. Most great thinkers have relied on intellect and logical reasoning to conceive various principles for the well-being of humanity. As these principles are based on speculations, they do not help anyone to attain insight, let alone the supreme goal of nibbāna. Even the lowest stage of insight, namely, analytical knowledge of mind and matter (nāmarūpa-pariccheda-ñāna), cannot be realised intellectually. This insight dawns only when one observes the mental and physical process using the systematic method of mindfulness (satipatthāna), and when, with the development of concentration, one distinguishes between mental and physical phenomena — for example, between the desire to bend the hand and the bent hand, or between the sound and the hearing. Such knowledge is not vague and speculative, but vivid and empirical.
• • • • (Upasampadā: 24th June, 1979)

nathan
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby nathan » Wed Feb 25, 2009 12:14 pm

"As all plants and animals which increase, grow, and prosper, do so with the earth as their basis, just so the yogin, with morality as his support, with morality as basis, develops the five cardinal virtues, i.e. faith, vigour, mindfulness, concentration, and wisdom." -Nagasena

http://web.singnet.com.sg/~rjp31831/nagasena.htm#KARMA

I need not consent that anyone must consign or condemn themselves to one or another kind of future being and becoming. Those who do so suffer. I do not wish for the suffering of others. Do any of you wish for me to wish for you to suffer? If not then take care in what you wish for me to likewise "believe" of you or your path or your fate.

It is more consciously up to you to take any given path or to know and understand The Path if you know and understand what you are and if you do not it will be simply your fate. The persistence of clinging is being. The re-arising and ceasing of other conditions are causes for becoming.

"These 24 conditions should be known thoroughly for a detailed understanding of that famous formula of the dependent origination (paticcasamuppāda)."
paccaya
http://www.palikanon.com/english/wtb/n_r/paccaya.htm

In death it may be that the mind will also break up fully very quickly or it may be that the mind will not break up very quickly or at all. One who pays little attention to the mind in this life has less mind to loose and is not as much attached to it. Such a being will loose most of what they are accustomed to cling to on the breakup of the body. One who pays little attention to the body in this life will not loose as much in the breakup of the body but if they pay much attention to the mind will loose much in the breakup of the mind. So the ways in which the mind will breakup, what will breakup and why is all dependent on conditions and qualities.

It may also be that this will simply be the release of that mind into the 'heavenly realms'. This is owing to the conditions developed and nurtured by that mind in this very life and during previous lives. A mind rich in the qualities of the brahma viharas rejoices in this release from the suffering bound up in the body. Such a mind will immediately feel very much more alive than before. A mind impoverished of such qualities which is base and full of craving and aversion will clutch and grasp at whatever it can, often leading it to unfortunate destinations which, in ignorance, it does not and perhaps cannot understand. A wicked mind appears in the hell that suits it and a blessed mind appears in the heaven appropriate to it's qualities. A deluded or confused mind full of ignorance but not so polarized through practice and habit in its moral and ethical aesthetics will grasp at whatever it can and find whichever destination it can, be it in the hell realms, ghost realms, animal realm, human realm or heavenly realms. The Buddha spoke also of those chains of dependent conditions which may rise to a heaven realm and then sink to a hell realm before returning to another more grossly embodied form. There are many possibilities for the path of these karmic processes until the path to liberation is found and then the possibilities are modified by awareness of that path as well.

There are three passages from Venerable Nagasena's answers to King Milinda's questions which may be helpful for further reflection in these regards.

http://web.singnet.com.sg/~rjp31831/nagasena.htm

The Chariot

Personal Identity and Rebirth

Personal Idenitity and Karma
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}

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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby clw_uk » Wed Feb 25, 2009 3:01 pm

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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Feb 25, 2009 11:04 pm

That was an excellent post, Craig... well said.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

green
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby green » Wed Feb 25, 2009 11:23 pm

A Buddhist should NEVER argue about rebirth without discussing Dependent causation - to discuss it without a detailed discussion of this cycle would be like falling into a trap or wrong views.

The Arahant gains the "Tevijja" or three knowledges -- which includes the knowledge of past lives.

:anjali:
Last edited by green on Wed Feb 25, 2009 11:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

nathan
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby nathan » Wed Feb 25, 2009 11:27 pm

Most Arahants could not answer these questions. Most Arahants would likely admonish a follower or disciple for asking these kinds of questions. There is little if anything in these lines of inquiry that will help on the path in any way. That would probably be the main reason that few Arahants could resolve most of these issues with 'answers'. That is not to say that it could not be done.

To give the kind of detailed answers on how kamma functions the Arahant would need to perfect:

CATUPAṬISAMBHIDĀ IN THERAVĀDA BUDDHISM
(THE FOURFOLD ANALYTICAL KNOWLEDGE IN PĀḶI LITERATURE)

"In reviewing the foregoing process of representation, we would have in view the following:

The key word ‘paṭisambhidā’ has a dual connotation. On the one hand, it signifies the analytical nature of the knowledge; and on the other hand, it refers to the knowledge that knows different categories of phenomena, such as the categories of resultant phenomena, categories of causative phenomena, and so on.

Concerning the analytical knowledge of result (atthapaṭisambhidā), it is the knowledge that comprehends analytically the five categories of resultant phenomena, namely, ‘whatever conditionally produced’ (yaṃkiñci paccayasamuppanna), ‘unconditioned state’ (Nibbāna), ‘meaning of the Buddha’s Word’ (bhāsitattha), ‘resultant’ (vipāka) and ‘inoperative’ (kiriya) phenomena. Alternatively, the analytical knowledge of result is the knowledge that comprehends the three categories of resultant phenomena, namely, ‘result being born’ (nibbattetabbo attho), ‘result being attained’ (pattabbo attho) and ‘result being known’ (ñāpetabbo attho).

Similarly, the analytical knowledge of cause (dhammapaṭisambhidā) is the knowledge that comprehends analytically the five categories of causative phenomena, namely, ‘whatever cause that produces result’ (yo koci phalanibbattako hetu) ‘Noble Path’ (Ariyamagga), ‘the Buddha’s Word’ (bhāsita), ‘wholesome phenomena’ (kusala) and ‘unwholesome phenomena’ (akusala). Alternatively, the analytical knowledge of cause is the knowledge that analytically comprehends the three categories of causative phenomena, namely, ‘cause that produces’ (nibbattako hetu), ‘cause that makes known’ (ñāpako hetu) and ‘cause that leads to’ (sampāpako hetu).

Thus, the Commentaries and Sub-commentaries classify those phenomena such as the four noble truths, the dependent origination and so on, which are described in the Canonical Texts, and which are comprehended by the analytical knowledge of result and the analytical knowledge of cause, into different categories belonging to result and cause respectively. Accordingly, there are various kinds of analytical knowledge of result, so are there various kinds of analytical knowledge of cause. Each of them in the same kind may not be the same from the aspect of object, purity and person in whom it arises. For example, the analytical knowledge of cause, which arises taking the Path as object in a Stream-Enterer (Sotāpanna) is not the same as the analytical knowledge of cause, which arises taking the Path as object in a Once-Returner (Sakadāgāmi). This is because the Path in the Stream-Enterer and that in the Once-Returner are diverse. For another example, the analytical knowledge of cause, which arises taking wholesome phenomena in one Non-Returner and the analytical knowledge, which arises taking the same wholesome phenomena in another Non-Returner is not the same. This is because the two kinds of knowledge are different from the aspect of purity or analyticity in different persons.

With respect to the analytical knowledge of language (niruttipaṭisambhidā), it is perhaps the most intricate to explain. The ambiguity lies in the technical term ‘dhammanirutti’, especially ‘dhamma’. The Commentaries and Sub-commentaries comment on this term in an evolutional process. At first, ‘dhammanirutti’ is commented as ‘sabhāvanirutti’ literally translated as ‘natural terminology’, next as ‘aviparītanirutti’ ‘terminology which is not changed’, then as ‘abyabhicārī vohāro’ ‘actual vocabulary’, which is always connected with the understanding of such and such meaning, and then as ‘Māgadhabhāsā’ ‘Māgadha dialect or Pāḷi language’.

Nevertheless, the final generalization of the study has revealed two dimensions of ‘dhammanirutti’. On the one hand, it refers to ‘grammatically correct terminology’; on the other hand, to ‘terminology related to ultimate realities’ in Māgadha dialect. Thus, the analytical knowledge of language has the function to understand the grammatically correct terminology of ultimate realities in Māgadha language, the stereotype of Pāḷi language nowadays. The ultimate realities are nothing but those atthas and dhammas comprehended by the foregoing analytical knowledge of attha and of dhamma respectively. In other words, the analytical knowledge of language knows the grammatically correct terminology of consciousness (citta), mental concomitants (cetasika), material qualities (rūpa) and Nibbāna as the four types of ultimate realities in Buddhism, in Pāḷi language.

Relating to the analytical knowledge of knowledge (paṭibhānapaṭisambhidā), it is the knowledge of the foregoing threefold analytical knowledge—the analytical knowledge of result, of cause and of language. It takes them as objects; and at the same time, it also understands their respective functions.

In conclusion of this thesis, there are three points noteworthy to highlight. Firstly, the fourfold analytical knowledge is distinctive, profound, yet attainable by practising the correct method shown by the Buddha and his distinguished disciples. The Buddha himself and his noble disciples, as recorded in the most authentic Pāḷi Canon, are clearly an embodiment of these kinds of knowledge.

Secondly, the fourfold analytical knowledge, though endowed with various categories, forms an inseparable set of knowledge as the whole. The Buddha and his noble disciples who attain these kinds of knowledge attain them altogether. In other words, the analytical knowledge of cause is related to the analytical knowledge of result and vice versa just like cause to result and word to meaning; likewise, the analytical knowledge of language is related to those of result and cause by means of terminology, expression, explanation and interpretation. The analytical knowledge of knowledge may then be compared to a wise overseer of its preceding ones; it clearly knows them and their functions by the state of non-delusion. Thus, of the fourfold analytical knowledge, it is the analytical knowledge of knowledge that depicts the liberated and enlightened characteristics of Buddhism—non-attachment and non-delusion.

Finally, the path to attaining the fourfold analytical knowledge had been revealed by the Buddha and his Noble Disciples; the rest is on our side. It is our own choice to tread the path, for the Buddha is just the path discoverer. Once, the Master said in the Dhammapada:

"Tumhehi kiccamātappaṃ, akkhātāro Tathāgatā..." [Dhp. 276]

"You yourself should strive to practise;
The Buddhas only teach the way...""

http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/catu/catu07.htm

This is what is involved, see the above link for a fuller discussion to understand the nature of this kind of understanding. It may provide much more insight into the difficulties involved in correctly answering such questions.

from:Nibbana as Living Experience / The Buddha and The Arahant
Two Studies from the Pali Canon by Lily de Silva
Some arahants are endowed with the special accomplishment of the fourfold analytical knowledge (pa.tisambhidaa-~naa.na), which qualifies them even more thoroughly for creative work.54 These are spelt out as analytical knowledge of the meaning or goal, profound truth, language or the medium of communication, and originality of expression (attha, dhamma, nirutti, pa.tibhaana). These four special qualifications make arahants experts in communicating to their audience the exact meanings and goals of the profound truths they have discovered, through the medium of refined language, using their own original modes of expression such as eloquent similes, metaphors, etc. Several arahants, both male and female, are recorded as eloquent speakers and erudite exponents of the Dhamma.55 Special mention must be made of the Theragaathaa and Theriigaathaa, which comprise poems of exquisite beauty. They are utterances of monks and nuns embodying their varied experiences. Literary critics rank them among the best lyrics in Indian literature.56 They remain unrivalled in the literary history of the world as creative writing issuing forth from the undefiled purity of the human heart and the nobility of human wisdom. They are ever-fresh fountains of inspiration to the truth-seeker and lasting monuments to the creative genius of the liberated beings.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el407.html

Aside from Sariputta we have further examples:
On the part of the Venerable Maha Kassapa Thera, no arrogance arose in him just by getting the Buddha's robe; he never thought: "Now I have obtained the robe previously used by the Exalted One: I have nothing to strive now for higher Paths and Fruitions." Instead, he made a vow to practise the thirteen austere (dhutanga) practices most willingly as taught by the Buddha. Because he put great efforts in developing the ascetic Dhamma, he remained only for seven days as a worldling and on the eighth day at early dawn attained Arahantship with the fourfold Analytical Knowledge (Patisambhida-magga nana).
http://www.triplegem.plus.com/gcobbku3.htm
Last edited by nathan on Wed Feb 25, 2009 11:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}

green
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby green » Wed Feb 25, 2009 11:33 pm

An Arahant would guide one to the Patitya samutpada in any question related to rebirth. Buddha's Dhamma is well expounded --i.e. well explained.

An Arahant has a job to make sure one gains right view and gains a mastery of the Dhamma.

What Buddha discovered and guides one too is something quite major, to realize what he discovered, one does not say, "Buddha ONLY discovered this path and is ONLY a guide..." as if what was done was "something anyone can do."
:smile:

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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby nathan » Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:02 am

But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}

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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby appicchato » Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:42 am


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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Feb 26, 2009 2:42 am

Venerable Appicchato is cool. 8-)

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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mikenz66
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Feb 26, 2009 2:51 am


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jcsuperstar
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby jcsuperstar » Thu Feb 26, 2009 4:07 am

its not just the 8fp but also the 4 truths that require faith, i mean sure there is suffering, that we can all see but why is there suffering? its quite obvious that many have looked at this problem of suffering and come up with different reasons so why should one automaticly assume the buddha was right? we have to have faith that he was right about the cause of suffering, then we again have to have faith that it can in fact end, that he wasnt just unloading a bunch of BS on us and then at that stage we have to have faith that his path will work and that he wasnt just faking it... buddhism actually takes a lot of faith if you really think about it. it just doesnt ask us to have blind faith like other religions do.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat

DarkDream
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby DarkDream » Thu Feb 26, 2009 7:27 am


DarkDream
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Re: Buddhist Rebirth Refuted?

Postby DarkDream » Thu Feb 26, 2009 7:39 am



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