Views and beliefs

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

Re: Views and beliefs

Postby clw_uk » Sat Mar 14, 2009 4:14 pm

Ravana

A person claiming to have a scientific view of the world cannot believe things such as kamma and rebirth unless evidence can be provided to justify these beliefs



Which is why for me to believe fully in rebirth is just as silly as disbelieving it since there is no evidence either way via science or ones own experience (unless one has some memory of it)


In my practice i dont make deffinite statements about if there is or is not rebirth/kamma result after death any more, since i have no knowledge either way its just speculation on my part, kamma and rebirth in this life however i can begin to see and understand so i focus on that

I see no evidence to disprove it so im perfectly comfortable with the notion of rebirth etc and i trust Lord Buddha when he states that not all kamma plays out in one life so i can tend to lean more towards there being rebirth than there not being one, but i still recognize this as just logical/speculative thinking that may be flawed so i dont put much stock in it


:namaste:
“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: Views and beliefs

Postby Mawkish1983 » Sat Mar 14, 2009 5:51 pm

Some people seem to act and talk as though Scientists are a mythical race of soothsayers.

For the record, I am a Scientist. I believe at this time that Evolution is fact. I am a practicing Theravadin Upasaka.

I can't forsee any Scientific problems with Buddhism (particularly Theravada) in the future.
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Re: Views and beliefs

Postby nathan » Sat Mar 14, 2009 7:17 pm

I'm not going to engage in debates about evolution vs. creationism. I think the data, from Darwin to yesterday, speaks for itself about the real nature of the expansion and contraction of world systems. I don't interpret the data as processes arising or ceasing always in exactly the same manner over long periods of time in precisely the same ways as most evolutionary theories so far largely have. I do try to account for all of what is known as opposed to focusing on any overriding concern about what is not known. I try to carefully examine all the scientific data and findings I encounter instead of collecting a small subset that suits my predilections. It is frequently interesting what data does not fit various theories. That is why I am confident that it all fits very well within the omniscience of Buddhadhamma. There is enough to be seen in the seen to keep me occupied with examining how it all fits. I chose to study Buddhadhamma because I like science and the Buddha has provided me with the most suitable 'theoretical framework' for ALL of the available evidence of every kind, macro to micro. As soon as any of those holding narrow sectarian views begin examining all of the data instead of selecting only that which suits a given preconceived rationale it is going to quickly resemble the Buddha's presentation of the history of the world and it's manifold beings very well. I don't think it is worthwhile for me to go on detail about the geology or the astrophysics, biology or chemistry. Everyone can do that for themselves. I have read Darwins book, I read it in grade school and I've read it since. I suggest reading it again along with the MN. Scientific theories often overlook obvious truths in favor of false views that support a theoretical framework that is in some limited ways adequate for other purposes for centuries. How much examination of external complexity of forms is necessary to fully reveal the underlying truths? The external data can all be studied for many lifetimes without any penetrative insight arising and to examine nature in only this way is to ignore the more immediate data of one's own senses and conscious awareness and the ongoing pressing need to examine that first and foremost. A need that physical science has overlooked for far too long to all of our peril. Thankfully, some scientists, have woken up to the nightmare. Otherwise, Mawkish, what brings you here? I think relying on such a broadly externalized and widely circuitous route to fundamental truth is a pursuit of the very kind of understanding that the Buddha's have and that as such it is a noble thing to pursue. I also can see why it would realistically take many periods of universe expansion and universe contraction to bring that understanding of all that arises and ceases to a universal fullness.
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: Views and beliefs

Postby Ravana » Sun Mar 15, 2009 4:57 am

clw_uk wrote:Then isnt this clinging to a teaching?

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think you should cling to the teaching until you arrive at a certain point of your path before nibbana where you're ready to let go of the teaching. If you let go of the teaching before that point, you probably won't arrive at nibbana. If you throw away the raft before getting to the other end of the river, you're going to drown.

clw_uk wrote:i mean if science shows that without a doubt it isnt so, then to hold that it is would be to deny what is real would it not?

As I said before, Science can never make a claim with 100% certainty - there's always an element of doubt:
Ravana wrote:Science can only get closer and closer to a hypothetical 'ultimate truth', because there is always the possibility that new evidence might be uncovered that doesn't conform to the present explanations.


clw_uk wrote:Which is why for me to believe fully in rebirth is just as silly as disbelieving it since there is no evidence either way via science or ones own experience (unless one has some memory of it)

So are you also similarly agnostic about the celestial teapot, the flying spaghetti monster, the invisible pink unicorn, the great jelly bean, purple elephants, leprechauns, fairies, and Yahweh? Because there is no evidence to prove/disprove the existence of these.

If you take refuge in the Dhamma, then you must give primacy to the Dhamma, not Science. Those who want to change the Dhamma according to whether it agrees with science or not, are giving primacy to science over the Dhamma.

As I pointed out with the celestial teapot analogy, it is irrational to believe in things such as kamma or rebirth until you can back it up with evidence. I have no problem holding such irrational beliefs because I do not give primacy to science - I give primacy to the Dhamma. Once again
Ravana wrote:And in the Kalama Sutta the Buddha does not ask the Kalama's to accept a doctrine because it seems logical - he did not say "accept what seems to best conform to empirical evidence".


Remember, the Kalamas were not Buddhists - the Kalama Sutta shows how one who hasn't taken refuge in the Dhamma should look at the different doctrines available.
“The incomparable Wheel of Dhamma has been set in motion by the Blessed One in the deer sanctuary at Isipatana, and no seeker, brahmin, celestial being, demon, god, or any other being in the world can stop it.”
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Re: Views and beliefs

Postby clw_uk » Sun Mar 15, 2009 8:20 pm

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think you should cling to the teaching until you arrive at a certain point of your path before nibbana where you're ready to let go of the teaching. If you let go of the teaching before that point, you probably won't arrive at nibbana. If you throw away the raft before getting to the other end of the river, you're going to drown.



To me you shouldnt accept the teaching outright as truth and not cling to them in any circumstance, until you have tested it enough to get insight into it (and even then dont cling to it), i wouldnt say im throwing away the raft since im not rejecting these teachings, i have confidence in certain teachings i have not yet got insight to because of the truth of the others i have had insight into and also because of confidence in the Buddha and his teachings, however i only take them as teachings and so test them and only then accept them as truth




As I said before, Science can never make a claim with 100% certainty - there's always an element of doubt:


I agree here but say science somehow mounts up enough evidence against a buddhist teaching e.g. rebirth, as it has done against the biblical teaching of the origin of man/earth, shouldnt that teaching be re-evaluated? how would you react to such a situation?


So are you also similarly agnostic about the celestial teapot, the flying spaghetti monster, the invisible pink unicorn, the great jelly bean, purple elephants, leprechauns, fairies, and Yahweh? Because there is no evidence to prove/disprove the existence of these.


Well we all are arent we?


If you take refuge in the Dhamma, then you must give primacy to the Dhamma, not Science. Those who want to change the Dhamma according to whether it agrees with science or not, are giving primacy to science over the Dhamma.


Im not giving primacy but i dont think it should be ignored, since i see science as part of the Dhamma since its concerned with truth and reality


As I pointed out with the celestial teapot analogy, it is irrational to believe in things such as kamma or rebirth until you can back it up with evidence. I have no problem holding such irrational beliefs because I do not give primacy to science - I give primacy to the Dhamma. Once again


Of course thats your choice to do so, your best way of practice :smile:

I dont give Dhamma second place


Metta

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“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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