the great rebirth debate

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Nyana » Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:31 pm

daverupa wrote:It's a bit more complex than that... I recollect this .pdf article by Ven. Analayo, for example, which discusses the structure and language of MN 117 and the likelihood that its demarcation of "right view" and "right view with effluents" is traceable to a later Abhidhamma stratum of composition. This means that such a demarcation is possibly a later development, made much of by disciples but not made as much of by the Buddha.

These differences in redaction are minor and don't alter the teachings on rebirth. If anything, this comparative analysis of MN 117 shows that the distinction between right view with effluents and without effluents, which rebirth skeptics are wont to hang their hats on, is merely an arbitrary addition not found in the other versions of this discourse.

daverupa wrote:
Ñāṇa wrote:
Ṭhānissaro wrote:This narrow focus places an obstacle in your ability to develop right view — and in particular, your ability to see dependent co-arising as a self-sustaining process.


SN 22.79 seems to contradict this.

(Forgot to include this in the previous reply.) SN 42.11:

    Headman, by means of this principle that is seen, understood, immediately attained, fathomed, apply the method to the past and to the future thus: 'Whatever suffering arose in the past, all that arose rooted in desire, with desire as its source; for desire is the root of suffering. Whatever suffering will arise in the future, all that will arise rooted in desire, with desire as its source; for desire is the root of suffering.'
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby daverupa » Mon Dec 17, 2012 4:30 pm

Ñāṇa wrote:These differences in redaction are minor and don't alter the teachings on rebirth.


Well, they may be minor, but they are present, and while they don't necessarily alter the teachings on rebirth, they do leave open an approach to Dhamma practice you seem to want to close, to wit: neither accepting nor rejecting pre-birth-post-death statements. One can readily apply the reasoning you quoted from SN 42.11 in such a case.

Neither accepting nor rejecting, but approach via the wager the Buddha himself devised for just such occasions as these, is perfectly serviceable.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: Is hell and hungry ghost realm to be taken literally?

Postby BlueLotus » Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:19 am

Ñāṇa wrote:The first approach is actually recommended to skeptics in the suttas. The second approach is never recommended in the suttas and amounts to trying to remake the Budhadhamma in one's own image.


My good man, I have never said I reject rebirth. I have said "I don't know". I also don't think belief in such is absolutely necessary to practice.
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Re: Is hell and hungry ghost realm to be taken literally?

Postby BlueLotus » Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:28 am

porpoise wrote:You're correct in saying that some suttas talk about ending suffering here and now, but I wonder whether this is referring to the cessation of mental suffering - as opposed to the cessation of both mental and physical suffering? Maybe looking at the Pali would help to clarify this.


It is kind of obvious we cannot end physical suffering while alive. Can we end aging, death and sickness? No we can't. As long as we are alive we will age, get sick and die.

So anyone who takes these physical aggregates of pain as suffering can also think that if an arahath is not reborn he ends all existence at death. It seems to be an endless debate on "ending existence" Vs "ending mental suffering". Frankly I don't know. All we can verify while being alive is the mental part of it right? So I prefer to just leave it at that. Whatever happens will happen after death. That is the approach advised to me so far and I am quite happy with it.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby nibbuti » Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:57 am

Ñāṇa wrote:These objections are rather irrelevant and not very coherent.

But if you're implying that teachings on rebirth, the unimaginable beginnings of saṃsāra, etc., weren't given to monastics, it's plainly stated that they were indeed given to monastics.

No, Ñāṇa, I'm not implying that those teachings weren't given to monastics, but only to monastics who were still naughty.

Each sutta is spoken at a certain location, to a certain (group of) person/s, within a certain setting/situation.

Otherwise that wouldn't need to be mentioned (as is the case with "abhidhamma")

That seem rather quite relevant for understanding a sutta's content.

Incoherent is only non-understanding.

:)
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Re: Is hell and hungry ghost realm to be taken literally?

Postby Spiny Norman » Wed Dec 19, 2012 9:27 am

BlueLotus wrote:It is kind of obvious we cannot end physical suffering while alive. Can we end aging, death and sickness? No we can't. As long as we are alive we will age, get sick and die....
All we can verify while being alive is the mental part of it right? So I prefer to just leave it at that. Whatever happens will happen after death.


I can see the logic of this pragmatic approach, but I wonder if taken to a logical conclusion it reduces Dhamma practice to a sort of coping mechanism? I'm not saying there's anything wrong with a coping mechanism, but I'm not convinced that's what the Buddha intended.
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Re: Is hell and hungry ghost realm to be taken literally?

Postby BlueLotus » Wed Dec 19, 2012 12:34 pm

porpoise wrote:I can see the logic of this pragmatic approach, but I wonder if taken to a logical conclusion it reduces Dhamma practice to a sort of coping mechanism? I'm not saying there's anything wrong with a coping mechanism, but I'm not convinced that's what the Buddha intended.


I don't know what you mean but personally to me cessation of mental suffering is a valid reason for practice and the end result is something worthy of achievement. You can sit here and worry about sickness and old age but there is no way to stop it while still being alive, is there? If you believe that pari-nibbana is the end of all existence then there is even more reason to pursue nibbana in this life. So what is the confusion there is?
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Nyana » Sat Dec 22, 2012 10:11 am

nibbuti wrote:No, Ñāṇa, I'm not implying that those teachings weren't given to monastics, but only to monastics who were still naughty.

This reply of yours is utter nonsense.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 22, 2012 10:19 am

Ñāṇa wrote:
nibbuti wrote:No, Ñāṇa, I'm not implying that those teachings weren't given to monastics, but only to monastics who were still naughty.

This reply of yours is utter nonsense.
I am not at all inclined to disagree with your assessment, but I think maybe it would be more skilfull to be a little more expansive in your reply, showing that this often claimed assertion that rebirth is a teaching for those of lesser attainment carries no weight.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.
"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Rahula » Tue Dec 25, 2012 3:26 pm

The great rebirth debate
When will this debate end?

Only when you, yourself witness it.

If a child in your family talked about a previous life and if you could find information about that previous life, then you will start believing it. It had happened to me and now I know it as a fact of life.

Good luck for all of you who are still waiting for evidence.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Sambojjhanga » Tue Dec 25, 2012 4:01 pm

Rahula wrote:The great rebirth debate
When will this debate end?

Only when you, yourself witness it.

If a child in your family talked about a previous life and if you could find information about that previous life, then you will start believing it. It had happened to me and now I know it as a fact of life.

Good luck for all of you who are still waiting for evidence.


:goodpost:
Sabba rasam dhammaraso jinati
The flavor of the dhamma exceeds all other flavors
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Rahula » Fri Dec 28, 2012 12:42 pm

Image
This Indian boy remember his previous life as a boy of another village who had put his hand into the blades of a fodder chopping machine and had its fingers amputated.

What can we learn from this?
The boy may had lost his fingers as a akusala karma vipaka. It seems like he had not fully suffered his akusala karma vipaka. So here again in this lifetime also he has to suffers the same akusala karma vipaka until he suffer it fully. In his previous life he had to suffer the pain of loosing his fingers. In this lifetime he doesn't has to suffer loosing fingers part as he had already suffered it. But he still has to suffer living a full lifetime without fingers part of the suffering as he was born without fingers. It looks like same karma vipaka had come from previous life to this life as a continuous flow, along with karma.

Isn't it an amazing example of how karma works?

Buddha just discovered how life system works. Whether you believe it or not it's the way it works. There are evidence every where around you, but you don't see them, as you are not looking for it.

Please don't waste your precious human life this time. You don't know what you will become next.
If you don't believe rebirth, please actively look for evidence. Go find those children as Dr. Stevenson did and talk to them. Talk to many as you can. Please don't just sit there as non believers even without trying to find it out. Endless arguments on a forum will not do it for you. No matter how hard we try, you will not feel like believing what others say. It's not easy to change your beliefs until you find some hard evidence.

If you don't achieve right view in this life time, you may never get a second chance.


Look at following images also.
----------------
Image
Severely malformed ear (microtia) in a Turkish boy who said that he remembered the life of a man who was fatally wounded on the right side of the head by a shotgun discharged at close range.
----------------
Image
young girl with a prominent scar circumnavigating her head that remembers the life of a man who died during a skull surgery procedure

Source:
Pic1 & Pic2: http://www.sinor.ru/~che/birthmarks.htm
Pic3: http://beforeitsnews.com/science-and-te ... 74723.html
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Aloka » Fri Dec 28, 2012 1:52 pm

Rahula wrote:What can we learn from this?

What can we learn from people who say they were Cleopatra or Mozart in a past life ?....and how does it actually help our practice here and now in this life?

Rahula wrote:Go find those children..

I firmly believed in Santa Claus when I was a child, and to this day, remember seeing him looking through my bedroom window on Xmas Eve. So...what does that prove ?

"Those who want to believe in survival of a personality after death will likely ignore the weaknesses in Stevenson's methods and praise him for his meticulousness, his devotion to detail, his zeal to get every claim verified or disproved. For my part, I have to agree with Stevenson's own assessment of his work: he's provided evidence, but no compelling evidence for reincarnation.

http://www.skepdic.com/stevenson.html



How about this ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2eUopy9sd8

:)
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Raitanator » Fri Dec 28, 2012 2:51 pm

Well, it would be argument fallacy to try to prove that reincarnation exists only because Siddhartha said so. However, we can prove that englightened being, Siddhartha, said that there is reincarnation - migration from one realm to another.

IMHO, reincarnation better be true, otherwise I'm missing a lot and numbing my arse for no reason!
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Rahula » Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:00 pm

Aloka wrote:
Rahula wrote:What can we learn from this?

What can we learn from people who say they were Cleopatra or Mozart in a past life ?....and how does it actually help our practice here and now in this life?

Rahula wrote:Go find those children..

I firmly believed in Santa Claus when I was a child, and to this day, remember seeing him looking through my bedroom window on Xmas Eve. So...what does that prove ?

"Those who want to believe in survival of a personality after death will likely ignore the weaknesses in Stevenson's methods and praise him for his meticulousness, his devotion to detail, his zeal to get every claim verified or disproved. For my part, I have to agree with Stevenson's own assessment of his work: he's provided evidence, but no compelling evidence for reincarnation.

http://www.skepdic.com/stevenson.html



How about this ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2eUopy9sd8

:)


The great rebirth debate
When will this debate end?

Only when you, yourself witness it.

If a child in your family talked about a previous life and if you could find information about that previous life, then you will start believing it. It had happened to me and now I know it as a fact of life.

Good luck for all of you who are still waiting for evidence.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Aloka » Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:31 pm

Raitanator wrote:Well, it would be argument fallacy to try to prove that reincarnation exists only because Siddhartha said so. However, we can prove that englightened being, Siddhartha, said that there is reincarnation - migration from one realm to another.

IMHO, reincarnation better be true, otherwise I'm missing a lot and numbing my arse for no reason!


The Buddha spoke about rebirth, not "reincarnation".

Reincarnation is a Tibetan belief.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Raitanator » Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:04 pm

Aloka wrote:The Buddha spoke about rebirth, not "reincarnation".

Reincarnation is a Tibetan belief.


Whatever.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Rahula » Sat Dec 29, 2012 7:05 pm

Raitanator wrote:Well, it would be argument fallacy to try to prove that reincarnation exists only because Siddhartha said so. However, we can prove that englightened being, Siddhartha, said that there is reincarnation - migration from one realm to another.

IMHO, reincarnation better be true, otherwise I'm missing a lot and numbing my arse for no reason!


It's not only Siddhartha who spoke about rebirth. There were others.

One such recent example is Edgar Cayce.
Not only Edgar Cayce described past lifes of his patients while on hypnosis, he also related present illness to past life bad deeds, Karma. There are lot of people who recovered very serious illness by his prescriptions and advice. It is evidence to prove that his treatments are accurate. If his treatments are accurate and if it make people recover very serious illness even many specialist doctors could not, we can accept his reasoning relating them to past life karma. (If you are interested you can read these Edgar Cayce Life readings through there website edgarcayce.org after paying for membership)

Edgar Cayce fit all this within his known religion and understood it differently, but we can understand it more readily as it is our Buddhist teachings. Perhaps, if Edgar Cayce was a Buddhist, he would had understood these things better.

Of cause, some skeptics does not believe anything what Edgar Cayce says. How could they, when they even don't believe what Buddha said. I also don't believe anything by face value. That's why I read books about Edgar Cayce, then read his real Life Readings and also criticisms. If you do a thorough research, you will understand the truth. Where as most skeptics, they just keep arguing about what they THINK without putting effort to really understand anything. I know I sound very impolite, I'm very sorry that I had to write it like that.

.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby nibbuti » Sat Dec 29, 2012 9:35 pm

Raitanator wrote:IMHO, reincarnation better be true, otherwise I'm missing a lot and numbing my arse for no reason!

Apparently there is craving a lot and numbing the rear part for no reason.

:|
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 29, 2012 10:12 pm

Aloka wrote:
Reincarnation is a Tibetan belief.
No it is not.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.
"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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