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To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth? - Dhamma Wheel

To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?

To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Yes
36
58%
No
20
32%
Not Sure
6
10%
 
Total votes: 62

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clw_uk
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To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby clw_uk » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:56 pm

Greetings


I have seen this on another Forum and thought it would be interesting to have a discussion here


Must one accept or have confidence in Kamma and also Rebirth in order to be a buddhist or to practice the buddhist teachings correctly

Would not accepting kamma and rebirth break a part of the Noble Eightfold Path on Right View and so stop one from reaching nibbana


Feel its an important discussion since kamma and rebirth come up a lot in the modern times so i think it would be good to know if not having a conviction in these two teachings actualy stops one from awakening


In reguards to my own answer i answered not sure, i used to think no at least in reguards to rebirth but now im not really sure. Ive just come to the understanding that one shouldnt advert from rebirth nor delight in it either since this is craving and so dukkha




P.S. If you could all state what you voted for so that it can be a good discussion, many thanks


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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby Fede » Wed Mar 25, 2009 9:06 pm

I voted no.
You don't have to accept anything in Buddhism, not without your own investigation, research and questioning.
And even then (particularly on the subject of re-birth) even if you remain unsure, it's ok to remain unsure.
As it's something the Buddha specifically taught, I personally would never flat-out deny it, and one, strictly speaking, should not....
But neither would I admantly assert that all should accept it, either.
"Samsara: The human condition's heartbreaking inability to sustain contentment." Elizabeth Gilbert, 'Eat, Pray, Love'.

Simplify: 17 into 1 WILL go: Mindfulness!

Quieta movere magna merces videbatur. (Sallust, c.86-c.35 BC)
Translation: Just to stir things up seemed a good reward in itself. ;)

I am sooooo happy - How on earth could I be otherwise?! :D


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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby clw_uk » Wed Mar 25, 2009 9:29 pm

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Ben
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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby Ben » Wed Mar 25, 2009 9:46 pm

One does not arrive at the truth by participating in a vote.
If you want to arrive at the truth regarding whether rebirth and kamma, then you will need to match ongoing study with bhavana (practice) and the truth will be revealed as you slowly acquire insight into the nature of nama and rupa.

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:25 pm

"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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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby clw_uk » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:34 pm

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby kc2dpt » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:45 pm

- Peter


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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:54 pm

"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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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby pink_trike » Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:02 am

To the best of my recollection, in all the years that I've practiced and studied the Dharma, none of my teachers have ever mentioned what must be accepted in order to "be" a Buddhist. I got the impression that the desire to "be" a Buddhist was a distraction.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby kc2dpt » Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:17 am

- Peter


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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby cooran » Thu Mar 26, 2009 2:16 am

Hello clw_uk, all,

I don't think one has to "accept" kamma and rebirth to be a follower of the Buddha.

But I think one has to "not deny" that kamma and rebirth were taught as part of Right View by the Buddha.

If a person has difficulty "accepting" kamma and rebirth, they ought to simply set it aside for this time, and study and practice the Dhamma further.

After a while, there is nothing to be accepted or denied ~ one comes "to know".

metta
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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby jcsuperstar » Thu Mar 26, 2009 4:26 am

all you need to do to be a buddhist is take refuge in the 3 gems.

the 2nd of which is the dhamma, now i would say literal rebirth seems to be a subject people might not want to think the buddha taught, so just to be liberal i'll throw that out and say you dont have to accept it. but kamma is a whole other thing, i dont think you can have buddhism without kamma. i think many people may not understand kamma and have a hindu/new age/my name is earl view of it but the buddhist definition is a bit different and to throw out the buddha's teaching on volilitional thought would basicly throw out a lot of dhamma, you'd basicly be left with some talks on basic ethics i guess, and if that was all buddhism was you really wouldnt even need it so why even be a buddhist? just cause you like the statues?
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

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Mar 26, 2009 4:37 am

Well said JC.

:anjali:

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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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby clw_uk » Thu Mar 26, 2009 4:51 pm

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:18 pm

I didn't think ther was a must accept aspect to Dhamma, rather a Must know for yourself!


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby Tex » Fri Mar 27, 2009 2:27 am

I suppose one could call oneself a "student of physics" while not believing in gravity, but I don't know how much progress s/he would make.

If you take gravity out of the study of physics a lot of the rest of physics falls apart.

It is the same with kamma and rebirth with regards to Buddhism, as far as I can see. Pull out a few bricks you don't like and the whole wall falls apart.

Regarding taking refuge in the Dhamma -- I don't know how one could truly take refuge in something that one believed incomplete or erroneous in certain places. I'm not trying to be judgmental, and as Cooran noted it's surely okay to be agnostic on some things and put them aside for the moment -- but I can't imagine really, truly taking refuge in any set of teachings if one rejects some of those teachings. What would be the point? It might be a bit like calling myself a Christian because I like a lot of the brotherly love teachings but I don't quite believe in the whole virgin birth and resurrection crap.
"To reach beyond fear and danger we must sharpen and widen our vision. We have to pierce through the deceptions that lull us into a comfortable complacency, to take a straight look down into the depths of our existence, without turning away uneasily or running after distractions." -- Bhikkhu Bodhi

"No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man." -- Heraclitus

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby Ben » Fri Mar 27, 2009 2:48 am

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Mar 27, 2009 2:53 am

Greetings Ben,

You don't even need to go to Abhidhamma for that!

MN 77
http://www.vipassana.info/077-mahasakuludayi-e1.htm

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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Ben
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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby Ben » Fri Mar 27, 2009 3:00 am

Indeed Retro
I know the Indriyas and Balas are mentioned in the suttas, as Nyanaponika Thera points out, but I was unsure where.
Kind regards

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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retrofuturist
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Re: To be Buddhist you must accept kamma and rebirth?

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Mar 27, 2009 3:09 am

Greetings Ben,

They're listed plenty of times in the Samyutta Nikaya but MN77 is the long rambling version.

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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