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Science-Earthquake - Dhamma Wheel

Science-Earthquake

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible.
rahula80
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Science-Earthquake

Postby rahula80 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 9:38 am

Hi,

"This great earth, Ananda, is established upon liquid, the liquid upon the atmosphere, and the atmosphere upon space. And when, Ananda, mighty atmospheric disturbances take place, the liquid is agitated. And with the agitation of the liquid, tremors of the earth arise. This is the first reason, the first cause for the arising of mighty earthquakes." (Digha Nikaya 16)

How do you understand this passage in light of science?

Thanks a lot,
Rahula

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Ben
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Ben » Sat Sep 25, 2010 9:42 am

Well Rahula, maybe you can enlighten us?
“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]om..

SamKR
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby SamKR » Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:35 am

Last edited by SamKR on Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:09 am, edited 3 times in total.

lojong1
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby lojong1 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:59 am


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Moth
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Moth » Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:33 am

Well if you consider lava to be liquid rock, then it makes sense that earthquakes are dependant upon shifts in liquids as these molten liquids are what move plates beneath the earth and thus cause them collide creating earthquakes.
May you be happy. May you be a peace. May you be free from suffering.
http://www.everythingspirals.com

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retrofuturist
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:44 am

Greetings Rahula,

The Buddha was explaining this in accord with cosmology as it was understood at the time.

Whether he did know, or could have known otherwise, are rather speculative and ultimately unrewarding questions, that are neither connected with dukkha nor its cessation.

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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Sherab
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Sherab » Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:57 am


lojong1
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby lojong1 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:26 am


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retrofuturist
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:18 am

"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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Sherab
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Sherab » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:44 am


Shonin
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Shonin » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:59 am

The simple and realistic explanation is just that Buddha's area of expertise was the human condition and that some of his understandings about things were taken as given from the culture in which he lived. He didn't as far as we know challenge the basic physical facts of the universe as was understood at the time: the earth is flat with four continents, where they meet is a huge mountain (Mt Meru/Sumeru) with various level of beings living on it etc. I don't know if he specifically said any of this or not, but he doesn't seem to have challenged it. He certainly taught about various beings and realms which would have been 'common knowledge' at the time but which would make most modern people squint. He was not God and while he may have been awakened, he was not omniscient. I think it is healthier to accept that rather than practice a sort of Buddhist fundamentalism.
Last edited by Shonin on Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Sherab
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Sherab » Wed Sep 29, 2010 6:18 am

"Buddhist fundamentalism"? :roll:
"In the same way, monks, those things that I have known with direct knowledge but have not taught are far more numerous [than what I have taught]. SN 56.31
I think the Buddha had to explain things according to the accepted knowledge of the times, even if he knew that the accepted knowledge was incorrect. Why? Because otherwise, he would end up wasting time and energy trying to refute the accepted knowledge, time and energy that would be best used to propagate his message.

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Kim OHara
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Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Kim OHara » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:28 am

The simplest and (IMO) by far the best solution to the clash between the Buddha's cosmology and modern science is Shonin's: to say that the Buddha's area of expertise was human nature, not the hard sciences, and that it is perfectly reasonable to accept that modern science has surpassed the Buddha's knowledge in some areas.
Any other course leads to irreconcilable contradictions, which I haven't time to spell out now and most people should be able to work out for themselves anyway..
:namaste:
Kim

Shonin
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Shonin » Wed Sep 29, 2010 8:37 am


lojong1
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby lojong1 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:55 am


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Sherab
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby Sherab » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:37 am


lojong1
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby lojong1 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:10 am

Last edited by lojong1 on Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

lojong1
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby lojong1 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:23 am

ākāsaṭṭho...I can't find much info on this word, except that some devas live there.
Oh found it, it's an adjective. Continuation of the "established upon" pattern is not entailed by the Pali. Vaato may not be to ākāsaṭṭho as earth to water and water to vaato.

rahula80
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Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby rahula80 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 1:28 pm

Hi,

Many thanks to all of you. Interesting.

Lojong1, perhaps you could offer a translation? Maybe together with a commentary?

Best wishes,
Rahula

lojong1
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Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:59 am

Re: Science-Earthquake

Postby lojong1 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 1:57 pm



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