the great rebirth debate

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby BlackBird » Fri Jul 05, 2013 2:12 pm

reflection wrote:[
Hi,

with all respect, I refrain from responding in detail, because I think your post indeed reflects there is no chance for a honest discussion. So let's just go our ways.

II'm happy to continue the conversation with anybody who thinks we can continue.

With metta,
:anjali:


Happily. But please do realize that belief in rebirth is not a 'wrong view' and that rebirth is not something you can realize through insight practice and or attainment of path/fruit. This is clearly stated in the suttas: recollection of past lives, and of the passing away and reappearance of beings in realms are supernormal powers, they are attained to through concentration bhavana. I've got my mudita at the ready if and when you're prepared to relinquish those views. :toast:

Until next time

with metta
Jack
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'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby reflection » Fri Jul 05, 2013 2:21 pm

Thanks for preparing some mudita. Likewise, I of course hope you will one day realize the process of rebirth. ;)

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:35 pm

To blackbird

As for the validity of rebirth being an important part of my Saddha it is rather simple. If rebirth does not exist, I would only need to cut off my life stream in order to experience nibbana, but the Buddha has said that annihilationism is a wrong view,


Why do you jump from rebirth view to annihilationism?

I dont have a view of rebirth nor a view of "annihilationism" since both are speculative, metaphysical "thicket of views"

That seems to be a problem in a lot of your past posts I've read on this thread, that someone who doesnt hold to rebirth must = annihilationism, which is wrong view



he has quite clearly stated that, therefore I take rebirth on faith, as the Buddha has stated that he has seen the nature of it with his own eyes.


the birth of "I am" due to clinging, yes

As for the view of "after death I will be a deva" etc he said its a tainted right view

Well - Then my faith is shot too, because how much do you know is real Dhamma the Buddha spoke and how much is invention? How do you seperate the wheat from the chaff?


Practice and study?

There is no way in my mind the Buddha teachings works as being quote "free of patchwork" as he describes it, unless rebirth is factual. Therefore I take it on faith, and it strengthens my practice, for without rebirth Kamma is also more or less dead in the water, and the Buddha has stated that this being is bound to Samsara, and kamma is his means of going beyond.


Samsara as the spinning of "I am"
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:36 pm

Happily. But please do realize that belief in rebirth is not a 'wrong view' and that rebirth is not something you can realize through insight practice and or attainment of path/fruit. This is clearly stated in the suttas: recollection of past lives, and of the passing away and reappearance of beings in realms are supernormal powers, they are attained to through concentration bhavana. I've got my mudita at the ready if and when you're prepared to relinquish those views.



Past abodes, i.e. past instances of "I am" due to clinging. Since "I am" comes to be millions of times today, there are countless "lives"
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:38 pm

Spiny Norman wrote:
BlackBird wrote: If the Buddha just made it all up, lied about it to garner support from the populace at large that believed that stuff back in the day, it does not bode well for his character being perfect in every way. Or say the Scholar monks invented it all and the Buddha never taught it. Well - Then my faith is shot too, because how much do you know is real Dhamma the Buddha spoke and how much is invention? How do you seperate the wheat from the chaff?


Skeptics employ a variety of strategies in their attempts to marginalise the teachings on rebirth and kamma. Personally I don't find these strategies very convincing, because I think they often represent thinly-disguised aversion, rather than reflecting an objective and open-minded reading of the suttas.



And one could easily say those who hold rebirth view are close to eternalism and clinging as well

However I dont see how that gets us far
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:39 pm

clw_uk wrote:
Happily. But please do realize that belief in rebirth is not a 'wrong view' and that rebirth is not something you can realize through insight practice and or attainment of path/fruit. This is clearly stated in the suttas: recollection of past lives, and of the passing away and reappearance of beings in realms are supernormal powers, they are attained to through concentration bhavana. I've got my mudita at the ready if and when you're prepared to relinquish those views.



Past abodes, i.e. past instances of "I am" due to clinging. Since "I am" comes to be millions of times today, there are countless "lives"
Still fighting this fight, still attempting to re-interpret the Buddha's teachings to fit your point of view. Oh, well.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
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People live in one another’s shelter.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:48 pm

I agree that they're not convincing. I think those who are not prepared to accept Rebirth and Kamma often still put themselves and their own intellect above that of the Buddha, or at the very least on the same level. It is a subtle conceit, but logically it denies the fact that the Buddha was enlightened and the person is deluded by avijja. We're wandering around in the dark here and I do find it laughable that some have the conceit to think they know better than the Buddha, or at the very least that their views are just as valuable as the Tathagata's
.

Or maybe they understand it in a different way than you do, oh and do so without being conceited know it alls who think they are more intelligent than everyone else (ever thought they are just trying to understand Dhamma as well?)

All you have done here is try to invalidate my posts by trying to imply I just think of my self as superior to the Buddha, or on the same intellect as him. Play the ball not the man please.

Of course I do not mean to lump all those who do not accept rebirth in this category.


Could have fooled me

Personally I don't think everyone who is an annihilationist has aversion, but they most certainly have wrong view, and more wrong view than those who accept kamma and rebirth.


Now your trying to imply I'm an annihilationist, or people who post the same as me are. Why do you assume we are? I have never said I am one, or ever posted anything that is pro-annihilationist

I think there is a tendency to disregard this important statement the Buddha has made, i.e. That annihilationism is wrong view. Furthermore mundane right view is known as a belief in kamma and rebirth.


Tainted mundane view yes

So frankly I don't think it's correct for these people to call themselves a follower of the Buddha's teachings. Because following requires submission, which is something they refuse to do,


:jumping: this isnt Roman Catholicism

they would rather make the Buddha Dhamma fit with their predilections than make their predilections fit with the Buddha Dhamma. Perhaps they can say that they are a practitioner of meditation and they have an interest in Buddhism, but they have not taken refuge in my view - That requires submission of one's own views regarding that which cannot be directly seen for oneself - Rebirth and Kamma.


Very bold statements

Rebirth skeptics seem to feel as though they can surgically remove rebirth and kamma from the Buddha's teachings the way one might remove an appendix, but this is not the case. Removing rebirth and kamma from the Buddha's teachings is like removing the lungs.


We are not doing such a thing, when I have said Rebirth wasnt taught by Buddha? The meaning and purpose of it is where we disagree :roll:

I don't think you can be a real Buddhist and not believe in rebirth and kamma - You're cutting away vast swathes of the nikayas, entire suttas fall under the knife of rebirth skepticism. It is a slippery slope I'm afraid - Once you start butchering up something that the Buddha has already declared is free of patchwork, you've crossed the rubicon, and why stop at rebirth and kamma, why not reinterpret anything else that poses difficulties, that disagrees with your own predilections? It would certainly become easier to do after the initial rejection.


So you decide who is a Buddhist?

What's the point striving for nibbana when you can just wait for death to come along and you'll get the same thing.


Your just jumping from one net of views to another

For those of us who believe the Buddha's teaching on rebirth - We need to strive and put forth great effort, because death is coming and we could be reborn anywhere. But for those who don't? What's the rush? You can just meditate and you can live comfortably, and maybe it would be cool to reach sotapatti because hey - that's a novelty too, but really? What's the point, why bother - When death will be the release from experience anyway.


Because if rebirth is true or not dukkha is here now :roll:

I really wish you rebirth skeptics were right. Things would be a lot easier. But I think the Buddha knows best.


I dont think you even know what it is that "rebirth skeptics" argue

Your posts are muddled and just argue past what I have been posting
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:51 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
clw_uk wrote:
Happily. But please do realize that belief in rebirth is not a 'wrong view' and that rebirth is not something you can realize through insight practice and or attainment of path/fruit. This is clearly stated in the suttas: recollection of past lives, and of the passing away and reappearance of beings in realms are supernormal powers, they are attained to through concentration bhavana. I've got my mudita at the ready if and when you're prepared to relinquish those views.



Past abodes, i.e. past instances of "I am" due to clinging. Since "I am" comes to be millions of times today, there are countless "lives"
Still fighting this fight, still attempting to re-interpret the Buddha's teachings to fit your point of view. Oh, well.



Well my understanding is that what I said in my above post is in line with those who teaching metaphysical rebirth as well

Didnt Buddha teach that "I am" comes to be due to clinging, so therefore there is "birth" millions of times a day?


He seeing a form with the eye becomes greedy for a pleasant form, or averse to a disagreeable form. Abides with mindfulness of the body not established and with a limited mind. Not knowing the release of mind nor the release through wisdom as it really is, where thoughts of demerit cease completely (*11). He falls to the path of agreeing and disagreeing and feels whatever feeling, pleasant, unpleasant, or neither unpleasant nor pleasant. Delighted and pleased with those feelings he appropriates them. To him delighted, pleased and appropriating those feelings arises interest. That interest for feelings is the holding (* 12) To him holding, there is being, from being arises birth, from birth decay and death, grief, lament, unpleasantness, displeasure and distress, thus arises the complete mass of unpleasantness. Hearing a sound with the ear, cognising a smell with the nose, cognising a taste with the tongue, cognising a touch with the body, cognising an idea with the mind, becomes greedy for a pleasant idea. Becomes averse to a disagreeable idea. Abides with mindfulness of the body not established and with a limited mind. Not knowing the release of mind nor the release through wisdom as it really is. Not knowing how thoughts of demerit cease completely. He falls to the path of agreeing and disagreeing and feels whatever feeling, pleasant, unpleasant, or neither unpleasant nor pleasant. Delighted and pleased with those feelings, appropriates them. To him delighted, pleased and appropriating those feelings arise interest. That interest for feelings is the holding (*12) To him holding, there is being, from being arises birth, from birth decay and death, grief, lament, unpleasantness, displeasure and distress, thus arises the complete mass of unpleasntness.


http://www.vipassana.info/037-culatanha ... tta-e1.htm


So every time there is aversion, there is holding and birth


seems so :reading:
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby reflection » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:55 pm

clw_uk wrote:Didnt Buddha teach that "I am" comes to be due to clinging, so therefore there is "birth" millions of times a day?

Hi,

I am undoubtedly going in circles here, but it's together with you, so I don't mind. We keep each other company. ;) And as you can probably understand, I don't feel like reading the entire topic.

BlackBird and I continued our little conversation via PM, and one thing that came up is that "birth" is not the birth of I am, as very clearly defined in the following sutta which is appropriately named "Analysis of Dependent Co-arising". For clarity I also included aging and death, which we can very clearly also interpret literally.

"Now what is aging and death? Whatever aging, decrepitude, brokenness, graying, wrinkling, decline of life-force, weakening of the faculties of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called aging. Whatever deceasing, passing away, breaking up, disappearance, dying, death, completion of time, break up of the aggregates, casting off of the body, interruption in the life faculty of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called death.

"And what is birth? Whatever birth, taking birth, descent (into the mother's womb), coming-to-be, coming-forth, appearance of aggregates, & acquisition of [sense] media of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called birth.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


Now, I don't really care if people take on a meaning of 'birth' to use it as a skillful teaching. And of course I also don't mind if people don't accept rebirth. But to imply that momentary 'birth' it is what the Buddha was on about, no, that doesn't hold. The above sutta should clear that up.

:anjali:
Reflection
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:58 pm

reflection wrote:
clw_uk wrote:Didnt Buddha teach that "I am" comes to be due to clinging, so therefore there is "birth" millions of times a day?

Hi,

I am undoubtedly going in circles here, but it's together with you, so I don't mind. We keep each other company. ;)

BlackBird and I continued our little conversation via PM, and one thing that came up is that "birth" is not the birth of I am, as very clearly defined in the following sutta which is appropriately named "Analysis of Dependent Co-arising". For clarity I also included aging and death, which we can very clearly also interpret literally.

"Now what is aging and death? Whatever aging, decrepitude, brokenness, graying, wrinkling, decline of life-force, weakening of the faculties of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called aging. Whatever deceasing, passing away, breaking up, disappearance, dying, death, completion of time, break up of the aggregates, casting off of the body, interruption in the life faculty of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called death.

"And what is birth? Whatever birth, taking birth, descent (into the mother's womb), coming-to-be, coming-forth, appearance of aggregates, & acquisition of [sense] media of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called birth.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


Now, I don't really care if people take on a meaning of 'birth' to use it as a skillful teaching. And of course I also don't mind if people don't accept rebirth. But to imply that momentary 'birth' it is what the Buddha was on about, no, that doesn't hold.

:anjali:
Reflection



Yet here

He seeing a form with the eye becomes greedy for a pleasant form, or averse to a disagreeable form. Abides with mindfulness of the body not established and with a limited mind. Not knowing the release of mind nor the release through wisdom as it really is, where thoughts of demerit cease completely (*11). He falls to the path of agreeing and disagreeing and feels whatever feeling, pleasant, unpleasant, or neither unpleasant nor pleasant. Delighted and pleased with those feelings he appropriates them. To him delighted, pleased and appropriating those feelings arises interest. That interest for feelings is the holding (* 12) To him holding, there is being, from being arises birth, from birth decay and death, grief, lament, unpleasantness, displeasure and distress, thus arises the complete mass of unpleasantness. Hearing a sound with the ear, cognising a smell with the nose, cognising a taste with the tongue, cognising a touch with the body, cognising an idea with the mind, becomes greedy for a pleasant idea. Becomes averse to a disagreeable idea. Abides with mindfulness of the body not established and with a limited mind. Not knowing the release of mind nor the release through wisdom as it really is. Not knowing how thoughts of demerit cease completely. He falls to the path of agreeing and disagreeing and feels whatever feeling, pleasant, unpleasant, or neither unpleasant nor pleasant. Delighted and pleased with those feelings, appropriates them. To him delighted, pleased and appropriating those feelings arise interest. That interest for feelings is the holding (*12) To him holding, there is being, from being arises birth, from birth decay and death, grief, lament, unpleasantness, displeasure and distress, thus arises the complete mass of unpleasntness.


http://www.vipassana.info/037-culatanha ... tta-e1.htm

Dependent Origination is clearly stated as occurring in moment, every time there is holding to feelings
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:59 pm

I am undoubtedly going in circles here, but it's together with you, so I don't mind. We keep each other company.



lol this whole thread goes in circles

Wish it would just be locked
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:06 pm

Now, I don't really care if people take on a meaning of 'birth' to use it as a skillful teaching. And of course I also don't mind if people don't accept rebirth. But to imply that momentary 'birth' it is what the Buddha was on about, no, that doesn't hold. The above sutta should clear that up.



Yet

"When the uninstructed wordling is contacted by a feeling born of ignorance contact, "I am" occurs to him; "I am" this occurs to him...."


Taken from SN ways of regarding things, page 885 in Bhikkhu Bodhi's translation sutta 47

Which ties into the above post of if there is ignorance, then we grasp which leads to "birth" of a being

"I am" is a sense of "Self", of "being"



I would be interested to hear where you think the sense of "I am" comes from

Dont we experience "I am" when we cling? So clinging gives birth to "I am"

"I am a naughty annihilationist posing as a Buddhist" :guns:

This is clinging to the body and to a view, that gives birth to "Self" as ...
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby reflection » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:21 pm

clw_uk wrote:
Yet here


http://www.vipassana.info/037-culatanha ... tta-e1.htm

Dependent Origination is clearly stated as occurring in moment, every time there is holding to feelings

It's easy to misinterpret the present tense in Pali as if it is occuring right now. But it can also describe things that occur in a general sense. As an example: "From eating bad food, comes sickness" This is not to say, if I eat bad food now, I get sick immediately. It may be tomorrow, or in a week. So when the suttas say "from A comes B" it is not necessarily in the same moment. It just says that for those craving (holding) there will arise existence (being), and there will arise birth. Not now, but when they die.


Yet
..
Which ties into the above post of if there is ignorance, then we grasp which leads to "birth" of a being

My Pali is very ridumentary, so somebody should correct me if I'm wrong, but reading the Pali version it does not seem to use the word "jati" (birth), so to imply that here it refers to the birth in dependent origination, is taking a lot of freedom of interpretation... I'd rather trust the definition the suttas give themselves. Which, you have to admit, is quite clearly not about "I am".
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:23 pm

It's easy to misinterpret the present tense in Pali as if it is occuring right now. But it can also describe things that occur in a general sense. As an example: "From eating bad food, comes sickness" This is not to say, if I eat bad food now, I get sick immediately. It may be tomorrow, or in a week. So when the suttas say "from A comes B" it is not necessarily in the same moment. It just says that for those craving (holding) there will arise existence (being), and there will arise birth. Not now, but when they die.


The two sutta quotes I have provided clearly show that when there is ignorance, we cling and give a rise to self

Straightforward reading of the sutta :reading:

Its also the way of understanding the Suttas I get from ajahn's as well

You read it differently then thats fine

Everything I can say I already have in this thread :broke: (both now and in past lives where I posted ;) )

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby reflection » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:29 pm

clw_uk wrote:I would be interested to hear where you think the sense of "I am" comes from

"I am" comes from self view, from ignorance/delusion. To that I agree.

But there are other things arising from delusion. You seem to assume because"I am" arises out of it, so that can be the only thing that arises out of it. And so that must mean dependent origination also speaks about that, and another step you take, every time "birth" is used it is not literal.

Well, that's a very quick assumption that doesn't hold if you analyse what dependent origination is about by the very sutta that defines its terms. There is no mention of "I am" or even conceit there at all. It says delusion gives rise to fabrications, which don't have to be the thought "I am".
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:33 pm

"I am" comes from self view, from ignorance/delusion. To that I agree.

But there are other things arising from delusion. You seem to assume because"I am" arises out of it, so that must mean dependent origination also speaks about that, and so another step you take, every time "birth" is used it is not literal. That's a very quick assumption that doesn't hold if you analyse what dependent origination is about by the very sutta that defines its terms. There is no mention of "I am" or even conceit there at all.


Of course it does

"I am" or sense of self is anicca, its not always there

It arises due to ignorance based contact which gives rise to clinging, so its born when there is clinging. "I dont like this feeling"

not difficult to read D.O. in this way and it does make sense from experience


When we see clearly then we dont cling, there is no more sense of self so we dont identify. Birth of identity has stopped and there is no more dukkha
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:38 pm

"Now what is aging and death? Whatever aging, decrepitude, brokenness, graying, wrinkling, decline of life-force, weakening of the faculties of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called aging. Whatever deceasing, passing away, breaking up, disappearance, dying, death, completion of time, break up of the aggregates, casting off of the body, interruption in the life faculty of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called death.

"And what is birth? Whatever birth, taking birth, descent (into the mother's womb), coming-to-be, coming-forth, appearance of aggregates, & acquisition of [sense] media of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called birth.


Is that part of the original sutta?

And I read here the definition of birth and ageing in all its forms

birth of of the aggregates, birth of "I am" in moments etc

ageing of aggregates, decay of "I am" in moments etc


Now I'm going to guess you wont agree with this reading, however this reading leads away from dukkha so is it not worth reading it that way?
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby reflection » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:52 pm

clw_uk wrote:
"Now what is aging and death? Whatever aging, decrepitude, brokenness, graying, wrinkling, decline of life-force, weakening of the faculties of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called aging. Whatever deceasing, passing away, breaking up, disappearance, dying, death, completion of time, break up of the aggregates, casting off of the body, interruption in the life faculty of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called death.

"And what is birth? Whatever birth, taking birth, descent (into the mother's womb), coming-to-be, coming-forth, appearance of aggregates, & acquisition of [sense] media of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called birth.


Is that part of the original sutta?

And I read here the definition of birth and ageing in all its forms

birth of of the aggregates, birth of "I am" in moments etc

ageing of aggregates, decay of "I am" in moments etc


Now I'm going to guess you wont agree with this reading, however this reading leads away from dukkha so is it not worth reading it that way?

I edited it in, that's why it is bracketed, like [sense] also was edited in by the translator to clarify.

Birth of aggregates is literal birth. For one thing, because one of the aggregates, it doesn't arise all the time: "this body composed of the four great elements is seen standing for a year, two years, three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred years or more." (SN 12.61). And about "acquisition of [sense] media of the various beings in this or that group of beings", you are suggesting "I am" arises in various groups of beings? As in, animals, humans etc.

Likewise, the part about death, it's even more clear: "decline of life-force, completion of time, casting off of the body, interruption in the life faculty ".. don't you think it is all very obvious? Now how would the 'birth' "I am" logically lead to this literal death? It doesn't.

To imply something leads away from dukkha must be the right reading is of course not a good argument. But as I said before, I don't mind people reinterpreting things so they can use it skillfully. But what I do mind is presenting the Buddha's word or the suttas as if this is the only interpretation and the right one, while the evidence is clearly against it. And that's not only this sutta, but the many,many other times the suttas speak about rebirth.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:54 pm

I edited it in, that's why it is bracketed, like [sense] also was edited in by the translator to clarify.



So you put your own spin on the sutta

:thinking:
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:57 pm

clw_uk wrote:
I am undoubtedly going in circles here, but it's together with you, so I don't mind. We keep each other company.



lol this whole thread goes in circles

Wish it would just be locked
Oh, yes. You made the same arguments and you went through the same denials as you are doing now when it was shown quite clearly that the Buddha taught literal rebirth.

We could lock this thread, but the same stuff would just pop up again and again. So, it best to keep it confined to one place. For those who are interested you can go back fairly early in this thread to see clw_uk's arguments.
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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