the great rebirth debate

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:19 pm

I think this sutta is relevant to the discussion at hand


"An untaught worldling, O monks, experiences pleasant feelings, he experiences painful feelings and he experiences neutral feelings. A well-taught noble disciple likewise experiences pleasant, painful and neutral feelings. Now what is the distinction, the diversity, the difference that exists herein between a well-taught noble disciple and an untaught worldling?

"When an untaught worldling is touched by a painful (bodily) feeling, he worries and grieves, he laments, beats his breast, weeps and is distraught. He thus experiences two kinds of feelings, a bodily and a mental feeling. It is as if a man were pierced by a dart and, following the first piercing, he is hit by a second dart. So that person will experience feelings caused by two darts. It is similar with an untaught worldling: when touched by a painful (bodily) feeling, he worries and grieves, he laments, beats his breast, weeps and is distraught. So he experiences two kinds of feeling: a bodily and a mental feeling.

"Having been touched by that painful feeling, he resists (and resents) it. Then in him who so resists (and resents) that painful feeling, an underlying tendency of resistance against that painful feeling comes to underlie (his mind). Under the impact of that painful feeling he then proceeds to enjoy sensual happiness. And why does he do so? An untaught worldling, O monks, does not know of any other escape from painful feelings except the enjoyment of sensual happiness. Then in him who enjoys sensual happiness, an underlying tendency to lust for pleasant feelings comes to underlie (his mind). He does not know, according to facts, the arising and ending of these feelings, nor the gratification, the danger and the escape, connected with these feelings. In him who lacks that knowledge, an underlying tendency to ignorance as to neutral feelings comes to underlie (his mind). When he experiences a pleasant feeling, a painful feeling or a neutral feeling, he feels it as one fettered by it. Such a one, O monks, is called an untaught worldling who is fettered by birth, by old age, by death, by sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair. He is fettered by suffering, this I declare.

"But in the case of a well-taught noble disciple, O monks, when he is touched by a painful feeling, he will not worry nor grieve and lament, he will not beat his breast and weep, nor will he be distraught. It is one kind of feeling he experiences, a bodily one, but not a mental feeling. It is as if a man were pierced by a dart, but was not hit by a second dart following the first one. So this person experiences feelings caused by a single dart only. It is similar with a well-taught noble disciple: when touched by a painful feeling, he will no worry nor grieve and lament, he will not beat his breast and weep, nor will he be distraught. He experiences one single feeling, a bodily one.

"Having been touched by that painful feeling, he does not resist (and resent) it. Hence, in him no underlying tendency of resistance against that painful feeling comes to underlie (his mind). Under the impact of that painful feeling he does not proceed to enjoy sensual happiness. And why not? As a well-taught noble disciple he knows of an escape from painful feelings other than by enjoying sensual happiness. Then in him who does not proceed to enjoy sensual happiness, no underlying tendency to lust for pleasant feelings comes to underlie (his mind). He knows, according to facts, the arising and ending of those feelings, and the gratification, the danger and the escape connected with these feelings. In him who knows thus, no underlying tendency to ignorance as to neutral feelings comes to underlie (his mind). When he experiences a pleasant feeling, a painful feeling or a neutral feeling, he feels it as one who is not fettered by it. Such a one, O monks, is called a well-taught noble disciple who is not fettered by birth, by old age, by death, by sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair. He is not fettered to suffering, this I declare.



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


Seems obvious to me that one can be free from dukkha in the here and now and that physical pain does not have to be dukkha
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:20 pm

Spiny O'Norman wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Also what is anicca is dukkha.


But it seems from DO that dukkha arises in dependence on ignorance, ie not seeing anicca ( and anatta ).
And as a result of this ignorance we become attached, that invariably leads to suffering.
Logically then if we do see clearly the nature of things then attachment / craving doesn't occur, and there is an end to suffering.

Spiny




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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:34 pm

Alex

Without mental defilements there are no dukkha of grief, sadness, fear and so on. But there is still dukkha due to change, and dukkha due to formations.



The dukkha due to change is another word for unsatisfactory. Heroin is always unsatisfactory, as is feelings etc. However if there is no clinging then there is no mental dukkha, no stress or pain
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:45 pm

kirk5a wrote:If the senses in themselves are not dukkha, only the clinging is dukkha, then why not undergo rebirth another thousand billion times? Just clear up the craving bit, and then, as I have seen it said here - "rebirth is no problem." :smile:

I don't see it that way. And I don't see the Buddha saying it that way. At all. Very much not saying that. In very strong graphic language like filling up the graveyards and so on.

As far as practice goes, well, if the dukkha of the senses is not seen, how we gonna let go? Is it realistic to suppose that the senses can be viewed as non-dukkha.. but we'll still let go of all that? I don't think so.



The Buddha is quite clear that clinging to the aggregates is dukkha

"Birth is dukkha, aging is dukkha, death is dukkha; sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief, & despair are dukkha; association with the unbeloved is dukkha; separation from the loved is dukkha; not getting what is wanted is dukkha. In short, the five clinging-aggregates are dukkha."



The views of rebirth, no rebirth one life or a million are also dukkha


At Savatthi. "Monks, there are these four floods. Which four? The flood of sensuality, the flood of becoming, the flood of views, & the flood of ignorance. These are the four floods.

"Now, this noble eightfold path is to be developed for direct knowledge of, comprehension of, the total ending of, & the abandoning of these four floods. Which noble eightfold path? There is the case where a monk develops right view dependent on seclusion, dependent on dispassion, dependent on cessation, resulting in letting go. He develops right resolve... right speech... right action... right livelihood... right effort... right mindfulness... right concentration dependent on seclusion, dependent on dispassion, dependent on cessation, resulting in letting go. This noble eightfold path is to be developed for direct knowledge of, for comprehension of, for the total ending of, & for the abandoning of these four floods."



http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:14 pm

Taken from Kamma and Anatta Thread






Buddhism teaches literal rebirth, clearly and definitely.


Im sure "Buddhism" does, however the view of "after death I will be a dog" is not part of the Buddhas own teachings, rather something he made use of

To deny the existence of a birth conditioned by previous existences after the physical death of the body is to distance yourself from the fundamental assumptions of Buddhism.


Reason why?

Fundamental Buddhism is dukkha and its cessation

Dukkha is clinging to the 5 aggregates, no clinging then no dukkha

here and now

If you adopt this view, you are reinterpreting the suttas to conform with your own beliefs.


How do you know what" my own beliefs are"? Reading my mind are you?


There is no reason to not just be inspired by Buddhism, while having your own views and using your own insight. You don't need to quell doubt in your beliefs by relying on religious authority, religious authority which may be accessible only by asserting that The Buddha didn't REALLY teach that which you wish him to have not taught.



Once again using your telepathy? How do you know what I am doing? How do you know that what I say does not come from insight?

Also the sentence you quoted was Aj.Buddhadasas words, not mine
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:55 pm

clw_uk wrote:The dukkha due to change is another word for unsatisfactory. Heroin is always unsatisfactory, as is feelings etc. However if there is no clinging then there is no mental dukkha, no stress or pain


Rather than saying "However if there is no clinging then there is no mental dukkha, no stress or pain" do you mean "However if there is no clinging then there is no mental dukkha, no mental stress or mental pain pain" ? If it is the latter than I mostly agree. Though Ud 4.5 and MN26 do show that even a Buddha can experience some degree of dukkha, perhaps only due to physical stress (of teaching Dhamma or putting up with unruly monks, nuns and laypeople).

Do you know how craving leads to dukkha according to D.O. ?

From craving as a requisite condition comes clinging/sustenance. From clinging/sustenance as a requisite condition comes becoming. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth. From birth as a requisite condition, then aging & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair come into play. Such is the origination of this entire mass of stress & suffering.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


Whats wrong with birth?
For one who is born there is death; Once born, one encounters sufferings — Bondage, murder, affliction — Hence one shouldn't approve of birth. The Buddha has taught the Dhamma, The transcendence of birth; For the abandoning of all suffering
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .bodh.html



“The heap of bones one person leaves behind With the passing of a single aeon Would form a heap as high as a mountain: Such is said by the Great Sage.
This is declared to be as massive As the tall Vepulla Mountain Standing north of Vulture Peak In the Magadhan mountain range.
SN15.10 (10) Person. Ven BB Trans.


I wonder how the metaphorical births & deaths of ego identity can be reconciled with the simile above.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Fri Dec 17, 2010 11:00 pm

CLW,

If there is no rebirth than the path is mostly pointless. It doesn't matter if one is serial rapist or a saint, it doesn't matter if one has wrong or right views, it doesn't matter if one is Buddhist or fundamentalist radical Muslim, the end would be the same and suicide could simply hasten nibbana.

Also even if one were to suffer continuously for 120 years, the cumulative suffering would not be even 1/trillionth of the cumulative suffering possible due to trillions or more of rebirths.

By denying the full amount of suffering, one is denying 1st NT. If the suffering is believed to be not that much (even 120 years of suffering is nothing compared to cumulative amount of suffering in rebirths), then it doesn't really make much sense and urgency to practice the path.

Why do we need the Buddha if we are guaranteed parinibbāna at death?
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Fri Dec 17, 2010 11:06 pm

clw_uk wrote:I think this sutta is relevant to the discussion at hand


"But in the case of a well-taught noble disciple, O monks, when he is touched by a painful feeling, he will not worry nor grieve and lament, he will not beat his breast and weep, nor will he be distraught. It is one kind of feeling he experiences, a bodily one, but not a mental feeling. It is as if a man were pierced by a dart, but was not hit by a second dart following the first one. So this person experiences feelings caused by a single dart only. It is similar with a well-taught noble disciple: when touched by a painful feeling, he will no worry nor grieve and lament, he will not beat his breast and weep, nor will he be distraught. He experiences one single feeling, a bodily one.


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


Seems obvious to me that one can be free from dukkha in the here and now and that physical pain does not have to be dukkha



Your sutta quote does refute your own position. A well taught noble disciple can feel a painful feeling dukkha vedanā. So this own quote tells us that even ariyasāvako can feel dukkha.

touched by a painful feeling = dukkhāya vedanāya phuṭṭho

Sutavā ca kho bhikkhave ariyasāvako dukkhāya vedanāya phuṭṭho samāno na socati na kilamati na paridevati na urattāḷiṃ kandati na sammohaṃ āpajjati: so ekaṃ vedanaṃ vediyati kāyikaṃ, na cetasikaṃ.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... ml#pts.207
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Fri Dec 17, 2010 11:12 pm

clw_uk wrote:Im sure "Buddhism" does, however the view of "after death I will be a dog" is not part of the Buddhas own teachings, rather something he made use of


You are right in the regard that there is no transmigrating "I". There is only a cause-effect stream that sometimes is conventionally called a dog, a man, a Deva, a Brahma, as hell being...

As for Hell, the Buddha has clearly stated that it was neither metaphor, nor belief on His part.

``Bhikkhus, I say this not hearing from another recluse or brahmin, this is what I have myself known and seen and so I say it."
http://metta.lk/tipitaka/2Sutta-Pitaka/ ... uta-e.html
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:02 am

Alex123 wrote:Why do we need the Buddha if we are guaranteed parinibbāna at death?


To gain wisdom and to be liberated from suffering? Actually the answer would be the same whether one assumed one lifetime or a million lifetimes, I really can't see the relevance of the timescale or what difference it makes to how we practice. There is suffering and there is a path which leads to cessation of suffering.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:13 am

Kenshou wrote:So I guess my bottom line is that when seen with wisdom what are conventionally called unpleasant feelings really don't have to be unpleasant.


It seems to me that this aspect of dukkha consists of aversion to unpleasant feelings, ie not wanting the unpleasant feelings. So if one can fully accept the unpleasant feeling, aversion and therefore dukkha do not arise. This seems to be consistent with how the second Noble Truth is expressed.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Sat Dec 18, 2010 7:17 pm

Alex

You have given me a lot to respond to :)


Rather than saying "However if there is no clinging then there is no mental dukkha, no stress or pain" do you mean "However if there is no clinging then there is no mental dukkha, no mental stress or mental pain pain" ? If it is the latter than I mostly agree. Though Ud 4.5 and MN26 do show that even a Buddha can experience some degree of dukkha, perhaps only due to physical stress (of teaching Dhamma or putting up with unruly monks, nuns and laypeople).


Physical pain is just a sensation, dukkha is what we create around it via aversion. This is based on my own direct observance and what I have been taught by teachers and its also in line with the Four Noble Truths

Dont get stuck on words



Do you know how craving leads to dukkha according to D.O. ?


Why is this relevant?


Whats wrong with birth?


Birth of "I" is dukkha


I wonder how the metaphorical births & deaths of ego identity can be reconciled with the simile above.



Why is birth of "I" metaphorical?



“The heap of bones one person leaves behind With the passing of a single aeon Would form a heap as high as a mountain: Such is said by the Great Sage.
This is declared to be as massive As the tall Vepulla Mountain Standing north of Vulture Peak In the Magadhan mountain range.
SN15.10 (10) Person. Ven BB Trans.


I wonder how the metaphorical births & deaths of ego identity can be reconciled with the simile above.



No reason why this cant be read as an Hyperbole


If there is no rebirth than the path is mostly pointless


This is your argument not mine. Have I said there is no rebirth, or have I just discussed the view itself? Would help if you actually read my posts carefully if we are to have a discussion

Your sutta quote does refute your own position. A well taught noble disciple can feel a painful feeling dukkha vedanā. So this own quote tells us that even ariyasāvako can feel dukkha.

touched by a painful feeling = dukkhāya vedanāya phuṭṭho



The Sutta is quite clear that the practice is to put an end to the second dart and, by extension, physical pain is just that


As for Hell, the Buddha has clearly stated that it was neither metaphor, nor belief on His part.


I have experienced Hell as well, as have you
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Sat Dec 18, 2010 7:24 pm

Alex


"Having been touched by that painful feeling, he resists (and resents) it. Then in him who so resists (and resents) that painful feeling, an underlying tendency of resistance against that painful feeling comes to underlie (his mind). Under the impact of that painful feeling he then proceeds to enjoy sensual happiness. And why does he do so? An untaught worldling, O monks, does not know of any other escape from painful feelings except the enjoyment of sensual happiness. Then in him who enjoys sensual happiness, an underlying tendency to lust for pleasant feelings comes to underlie (his mind). He does not know, according to facts, the arising and ending of these feelings, nor the gratification, the danger and the escape, connected with these feelings. In him who lacks that knowledge, an underlying tendency to ignorance as to neutral feelings comes to underlie (his mind). When he experiences a pleasant feeling, a painful feeling or a neutral feeling, he feels it as one fettered by it. Such a one, O monks, is called an untaught worldling who is fettered by birth, by old age, by death, by sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair. He is fettered by suffering, this I declare.


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



This clearly shows that the aversion is what leads to dukkha in the case when one is touched by physical pain

When one has aversion then this leads to craving, birth of "I" and dukkha


However when one has knowledge of things as they are, one knows that physical pain is just a sensation that has the three marks. Then there is no aversion

Now this is knowledge based contact. When there is knowledge based contact there is no development of a feeling into craving

D.O. stops and dukkha does not come to be


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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Sat Dec 18, 2010 7:27 pm

Alex

"On seeing a form with the eye he does not become greedy for pleasant forms, or averse to disagreeable forms. He abides with mindfulness of the body established and with a immeasurable mind. He knows the deliverance of mind and the deliverance through wisdom as it really is, where unwholesome states cease completely. Having abandoned the path of agreeing and disagreeing, he experiences whatever feeling that arises - pleasant, unpleasant, or neither unpleasant nor pleasant - just as it is. He is not delighted or pleased with those feelings and he does not appropriates them. Interest in those feelings ceases. With the cessation of interest, clinging ceases. With no clinging, there is no becoming; no becoming, no birth; with no birth, there is no old age, sickness or death, no grief, lament, unpleasantness, displeasure or distress. Thus ceases the complete mass of dukkha.



http://www.leighb.com/mn38.htm


If you abandon the path of liking or averting and instead just experience physical pain as it is then there is no dukkha
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Sat Dec 18, 2010 7:30 pm

Alex


"There are these three kinds of feeling: a pleasant feeling, a painful feeling, and neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling. On the occasion when one feels a pleasant feeling, one does not feel either a painful feeling or a neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling. One feels only a pleasant feeling on that occasion. On the occasion when one feels a painful feeling, one does not feel either a pleasant feeling or a neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling. One feels only a painful feeling on that occasion. On the occasion when one feels a neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling feeling, one does not feel either a pleasant feeling or a painful feeling. One feels only a neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling on that occasion.

"A pleasant feeling is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen, subject to ending, subject to vanishing, fading, ceasing. A painful feeling is also inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen, subject to ending, subject to vanishing, fading, ceasing. A neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling is also inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen, subject to ending, subject to vanishing, fading, ceasing.

"Seeing this, an instructed disciple of the noble ones grows disenchanted with pleasant feeling, disenchanted with painful feeling, disenchanted with neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling. Disenchanted, he grows dispassionate. From dispassion, he is released. With release, there is the knowledge, 'Released.' He discerns, 'Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for this world.' A monk whose mind is thus released does not take sides with anyone, does not dispute with anyone. He words things by means of what is said in the world but without grasping at it."



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




"And how is the nutriment of contact to be regarded? Suppose a flayed cow were to stand leaning against a wall. The creatures living in the wall would chew on it. If it were to stand leaning against a tree, the creatures living in the tree would chew on it. If it were to stand exposed to water, the creatures living in the water would chew on it. If it were to stand exposed to the air, the creatures living in the air would chew on it. For wherever the flayed cow were to stand exposed, the creatures living there would chew on it. In the same say, I tell you, is the nutriment of contact to be regarded. When the nutriment of contact is comprehended, the three feelings [pleasure, pain, neither pleasure nor pain] are comprehended. When the three feelings are comprehended, I tell you, there is nothing further for a disciple of the noble ones to do.



http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:49 am

Spiny O'Norman wrote:To gain wisdom and to be liberated from suffering?


Wisdom is to get liberated from suffering. If there was one life, then one would be liberated from all suffering when death will occur. Meanwhile one could do whatever one wanted, it would all lead to the same goal and any special method would not be necessary as cessation of all suffering (be it due to defilements or other factors as well).
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:57 am

CLW,

clw_uk wrote:Alex

"On seeing a form with the eye he does not become greedy for pleasant forms, or averse to disagreeable forms. He abides with mindfulness of the body established and with a immeasurable mind. He knows the deliverance of mind and the deliverance through wisdom as it really is, where unwholesome states cease completely. Having abandoned the path of agreeing and disagreeing, he experiences whatever feeling that arises - pleasant, unpleasant, or neither unpleasant nor pleasant - just as it is. He is not delighted or pleased with those feelings and he does not appropriates them. Interest in those feelings ceases. With the cessation of interest, clinging ceases. With no clinging, there is no becoming; no becoming, no birth; with no birth, there is no old age, sickness or death, no grief, lament, unpleasantness, displeasure or distress. Thus ceases the complete mass of dukkha.



http://www.leighb.com/mn38.htm


If you abandon the path of liking or averting and instead just experience physical pain as it is then there is no dukkha




In your own post it tells us that a wise person can experience dukkha!

"he experiences whatever feeling that arises - pleasant, unpleasant (dukkhaṃ), or neither unpleasant nor pleasant"
So evaṃ anurodhavirodhavippahīno yaṃ kiñci vedanaṃ vedeti sukhaṃ vā dukkhaṃ vā adukkhamasukhaṃ vā, so taṃ vedanaṃ nābhinandati nābhivadati nājjhosāya tiṭṭhati. Tassa taṃ vedanaṃ anabhinandato anabhivadato anajjhosāya tiṭṭhato yā vedanāsu nandī sā nirujjhati. Tassa nandinirodhā upādānanirodho, upādānanirodhā bhavanirodho, bhavanirodhā jātinirodho, jātinirodhā jarāmaraṇaṃ sokaparidevadukkhadomanassupāyāsā nirujjhanti. Evametassa kevalassa dukkhakkhandhassa nirodho hoti.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... ml#pts.237


So dukkha can be experienced even by an Aryan. One simply has no mental aversion or liking of it.

Same for your other quote that just supports that Aryans can feel dukkha (just not due defilements which they've eradicated).

"But in the case of a well-taught noble disciple, O monks, when he is touched by a painful feeling (dukkhāya vedanāya phuṭṭho), he will not worry nor grieve and lament, he will not beat his breast and weep, nor will he be distraught. It is one kind of feeling he experiences, a bodily one, but not a mental feeling.
Sutavā ca kho bhikkhave ariyasāvako dukkhāya vedanāya phuṭṭho samāno na socati na kilamati na paridevati na urattāḷiṃ kandati na sammohaṃ āpajjati: so ekaṃ vedanaṃ vediyati kāyikaṃ, na cetasikaṃ.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... ml#pts.207
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nypo.html
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:34 am

Alex123 wrote:
Spiny O'Norman wrote:To gain wisdom and to be liberated from suffering?


Wisdom is to get liberated from suffering. If there was one life, then one would be liberated from all suffering when death will occur.


But I want to get liberated from suffering now! Or at least in the forseeable future ;)
But seriously, I'm not arguing against the existence of rebirth, I'm just saying I don't know what the future holds - I don't know what will happen next week, let alone in a future lifetime. And presumably nobody else here knows what the future holds, so we're talking about beliefs and assumptions. The question then is presumably about motivation for practice - for some people a positive belief in rebirth is a motivator for the kind of reasons you've mentioned, for other people it isn't relevant to their daily practice.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Alex123 » Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:26 pm

Spiny O'Norman wrote:But I want to get liberated from suffering now! Or at least in the forseeable future ;)


Even the Buddha did experience unpleasant feelings enough to affect or almost affect his behaviour (MN26, Ud 4.5). The unsatisfactoriness of existence is IMHO so pervasive that dukkha can be attenuated but never 100% destroyed until parinibbāna.

"And if I were to teach the Dhamma and others would not understand me, that would be tiresome for me, troublesome for me..."As I reflected thus, my mind inclined to dwelling at ease, not to teaching the Dhamma.'" - MN26


It is my understanding that "to live is to suffer" and that "suffering is inseparable from existence".
Spiny O'Norman wrote:But seriously, I'm not arguing against the existence of rebirth, I'm just saying I don't know what the future holds - I don't know what will happen next week, let alone in a future lifetime. And presumably nobody else here knows what the future holds, so we're talking about beliefs and assumptions. The question then is presumably about motivation for practice - for some people a positive belief in rebirth is a motivator for the kind of reasons you've mentioned, for other people it isn't relevant to their daily practice.
Spiny



Belief in rebirth is not the same as predicting the future. I believe that this body will die. One doesn't need any "prediction" to assume that.


Also, there is a class of individuals called padaparama (text as highest attainment). This type cannot achieve awakening in this life, but only in the future life if they put the most effort in this life. Within "one-life theory" this type of practitioners is doomed not to become awakened or to attain supеr human states of insight and meditative attainments. One could only hope to become awakened even to stream entry only in the next life. So if one believes in one-life-only, one may get discouraged, wrongly believe that Dhamma doesn't work and quit. This would be terrible. But within multiple lives until parinibbāna, these do have a hope.


Bhikkhus, a certain person whether he gains sight of the Thus Gone One or does not gain sight of the Thus Gone One, whether he hears the Teaching and Discipline of the Thus Gone One or does not hear it, he does not enter the right path to become proficient in meritorious thoughts.

AN3.22 Gilānasuttaṃ Ý Sick persons
http://metta.lk/tipitaka/2Sutta-Pitaka/ ... ggo-e.html


Something tells me that generally speaking exceptionally good people are rare, I believe in the pyramid, and unfortunately not all have what it takes.



An interesting link about 4 types of individuals
http://www.viet.net/anson/uni/u-37bd/37bd-e00.htm
I was not; I was; I am not; I do not care."
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Alex123
 
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Cloud » Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:28 am

from the teachings of Ajahn Chah:
Even the Buddha experienced these things, he experienced comfort and pain, but he recognized them as conditions in nature. He knew how to overcome these ordinary, natural feelings of comfort and pain through understanding their true nature. Because he understood this “natural suffering” those feelings didn’t upset him.


Both joy and sorrow, both pleasure and pain, are dukkha if we have not released the mind from all wrong view. Really these are the same thing (i.e. pleasure and pain); it is only through our delusions of permanence, stability and self that we make distinction and suffer.
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