Children who remember their past lives as monks

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Mal
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by Mal »

Philovitist wrote:Mozart may be less of an example of rebirth than of pure genius — one can explain his success as a result of fortunate genetic endowment instead of some metaphysical event. That would be a more parsimonious account of it. No, one will have to look to different examples in order to establish that rebirth occurs.
One cannot explain his success by pure genetic endowment. If he had been born in 18th century Tibet he wouldn't have been much of a pianist :)

Much of his success was down to very good teaching from his father, and very hard work, again, due to his father. He also had a slightly older sister who was a very good pianist - unleashing the full power of sibling rivalry. She (Nanerel) was also very caring by all accounts, as was his father. Mum was just very caring, until she died when he was young. Another reason to lose himself in his work?

I think the consensus now is that "pure unique genius" is largely a myth. A "good enough" genetic endowment might be enough, if your teachers and environment are more than good enough. Another example - the IQs of Noble prizewinners, on average, are not that outstanding - around 130/140 is generally considered "good enough" to take you to the heights of secular achievement - if you are fortunate in your circumstances (or is it unfortunate? You might be better off meditating... :)
Philovitist wrote: What I really wish to understand is the mechanism by which rebirth occurs, if it does at all. It completely contradicts all we know about human inheritance.
How does it contradict all we know about human inheritance?

if a father and mother are clever you would expect the child to be clever. That could be either (i) because the child inherited their good brains (ii) the fortunate circumstance attracted a powerful consciousness for rebirth. (iii) a combination of the two. Can't see any contradiction there.

Can you give an example of a contradiction?
Mal
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by Mal »

santa100 wrote:Joseph Haydn himself wrote that "posterity will not see such a talent again in 100 years".
He was just trying to keep Beethoven's ego in check :)
greggorious
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by greggorious »

I didn't want to start a new topic on this, but did Ajahn Buddhadasa reject rebirth?
"The original heart/mind shines like pure, clear water with the sweetest taste. But if the heart is pure, is our practice over? No, we must not cling even to this purity. We must go beyond all duality, all concepts, all bad, all good, all pure, all impure. We must go beyond self and nonself, beyond birth and death. When we see with the eye of wisdom, we know that the true Buddha is timeless, unborn, unrelated to any body, any history, any image. Buddha is the ground of all being, the realization of the truth of the unmoving mind.” Ajahn Chah
santa100
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by santa100 »

From MN 41. ( http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nymo.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; ):

The brahman householders of Sala:
"Master Gotama, what is the reason, what is the condition, why some beings here, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, even in hell; and what is the reason, what is the condition, why some beings here, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in a happy destination, even in the heavenly world?"
The Blessed One:
"Householders, it is by reason of conduct not in accordance with the Dhamma, by reason of unrighteous conduct, that beings here on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, even in hell. It is by reason of conduct in accordance with the Dhamma, by reason of righteous conduct, that some beings here on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in a happy destination, even in the heavenly world."
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gavesako
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by gavesako »

In my view, scientific materialism is a kind of acquired delusion that dominates modern education, scientific inquiry and the popular media. This is the view that the whole of reality consists of nothing more than mass-energy, space-time and their derivative properties. Materialists also commonly believe that only physical processes have causal efficacy, implying that the only influences on the brain are physical ones. This belief ignores the causal efficacy of meaningful information, which cannot be measured by mindless machines but can be detected by subjective, conscious intelligence.
Through the course of our lives we may compound our innate delusional tendencies to misapprehend reality with kinds of delusion that we pick up from our cultural environment and education. In my view, scientific materialism is a kind of acquired delusion that dominates modern education, scientific inquiry and the popular media. This is the view that the whole of reality consists of nothing more than mass-energy, space-time and their derivative properties. Materialists also commonly believe that only physical processes have causal efficacy, implying that the only influences on the brain are physical ones. This belief ignores the causal efficacy of meaningful information, which cannot be measured by mindless machines but can be detected by subjective, conscious intelligence.
The only kinds of natural phenomena scientists can measure with their instruments of technology are objective, physical and quantifiable. But mental processes—in contrast to their behavioral expressions and neural correlates—are subjective, have no physical attributes and are qualitative. So they are invisible to scientific methods of measurement. Materialists therefore equate that which they can’t measure—subjective experience—with that which they can measure. This implies a kind of “methodolatry” by which one assumes that the third-person methods of inquiry of science constitute “the one true path” to understanding the natural world, while discounting the insights and discoveries that may be made through first-person introspection and contemplative inquiry. So I reject both this exclusionist approach to understanding nature, as well as its reductionist conclusions, for they are not validated by empirical evidence or by logical argument.
Materialists commonly equate people with their brains, which operate according to the amoral, mindless laws of physics and chemistry. Many people, including myself, find this belief to be not only unsubstantiated by empirical evidence but also dehumanizing, disempowering and demoralizing. Indoctrination into this belief system—especially when it is presented as being integral to any scientific worldview—may itself be a major, indirect cause of depression in the modern world. It is crucial to note that many scientists do not adhere to the metaphysical principles of materialism. This clearly implies that it is not a necessary feature of scientific thinking.
-- Alan Wallace
http://www.inquiringmind.com/Articles/PoppingPills.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

:cry:
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

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BubbaBuddhist
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by BubbaBuddhist »

Amadeus Mozart isn't really a mystery; after all he had plenty pf musical training. However, Blind Tom Wiggins is a true enigma:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blind_Tom_Wiggins

BB
Author of Redneck Buddhism: or Will You Reincarnate as Your Own Cousin?
daverupa
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by daverupa »

autistic savant =/= true enigma
  • "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]
Philovitist
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by Philovitist »

How does it contradict all we know about human inheritance?

if a father and mother are clever you would expect the child to be clever. That could be either (i) because the child inherited their good brains (ii) the fortunate circumstance attracted a powerful consciousness for rebirth. (iii) a combination of the two. Can't see any contradiction there.
Well, once you get to the down and dirty of it — molecular genetics — there is no stage in the mechanical processes underlying inheritance that seems to directly suggest the "attraction of a powerful consciousness". Not in the steps involved in the production of the gamete, nor in initial brain development.
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BubbaBuddhist
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by BubbaBuddhist »

And where do you get me? Mom and Dad, as ignorant as dirt. Entire family drunken oafs in fact. My environment and background was violent and culturally vacuous. Yet at an early age (preschool) I learned to read and worked my way through an old set of encyclopaedia, instantly loved classical music and literature, and as soon as I found Buddhism took to it as if it were home. How ignorant were my folks? When I brought home 'As' on my report card, they didn't praise me, but said things like "You think you're better than us, don't you?" :jumping: At one point, I think I was twelve or so, I responded, "Well, yes--I do." Neither genetics nor environment account for my character, unless you label me a mutation. Or maybe the milkman--or possibly the postman--was an out-of-work professor of classical literature who caught my mom one morning in an amorous mood. Not only am I the only member of my family to complete high school and go to college, I had to prove it wasn't a fluke and I earned three college degrees.

I always thought the stork made a mistake and I was originally scheduled for dropoff at an upper-class British family instead of a lower-class redneck Tennessee family. ROFL! If the Buddhist theory is correct then my gandhabba must have been inebriated and took a wrong turn.

BB
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santa100
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by santa100 »

Philovitist wrote:
Well, once you get to the down and dirty of it — molecular genetics — there is no stage in the mechanical processes underlying inheritance that seems to directly suggest the "attraction of a powerful consciousness". Not in the steps involved in the production of the gamete, nor in initial brain development.
Which is hardly a surprise. After all, we still only know about 4% of all the stuff that made up this universe. There're still tons of stuff out there that we're yet to find out: antimatter, dark energy, dark fluid, dark flow, dart matter, etc. (they're all "dark" because up 'til now we still have no idea how to capture them). Maybe the Buddha had already mastered String Theory, traveled through all 11 dimensions, and found that elusive Gandhabba hiding deep within those "dark" stuff.. :tongue:
Mal
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

Post by Mal »

Philovitist wrote:... molecular genetics — there is no stage in the mechanical processes underlying inheritance that seems to directly suggest the "attraction of a powerful consciousness". Not in the steps involved in the production of the gamete, nor in initial brain development.
What about later brain development?

You can't isolate consciousness in a test tube.
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gavesako
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Re: Children who remember their past lives as monks

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Venerable Khuva Boonchum ครูบาบุญชุ่ม
(1964 - )

This translation of the Dhammapada is published for free distribution by the followers of the Venerable Khuva Boonchum to mark his golden jubilee birthday which falls on 5 January 2013 (Buddhist Era 2556). The Venerable Khuva Boonchum is a forest meditation monk, well known since the age of thirteen to a great numbers of devotees in Lao, Sipsongbanna of Yunnan Province in China, Shan State of the Union of Myanmar and Thailand for his solitary and serious meditation practice.

The Venerable Khuva Boonchum was born in 1964 (Buddhist Era 2507) in Pa Maisak (Timberfield) Village, in Chiang Saen District in northern Thailand, now known all over the world as the symbolic landmark of the Golden Triangle. He was named Boonchum (Mark of Merit/Boon) because his mother had a vivid dream of a beautiful golden pagoda around at the time of his conception. Boonchum’s grandparents were Tai/ Shan speaking people, originally from Mong Yong near Kengtung (Chiangtung) in the eastern part of Shan State, the Union of Burma and migrated to Chiang Saen where Nang Saeng La, the mother of Boonchum was born.

Boonchum was the eldest of four siblings and his father, Loong Kham La, died when he was just six months old and his mother re-married and had three more children. Following the traditional custom of South-east Asia where boys are initiated as novice (samanera) at a young age, Boonchum was initiated at the age of eleven and after the completion of his primary education, with thirty-two other boys in 1975. After a year or two, all of them returned to lay life, except Samanera Boonchum who has taken interest in meditation. After studying Buddhist scriptures for a year and having completed nak-dhamma tri, the first foundation level of formal Dhamma examinations, he decided that the formal study as it was taught to him emphasized too much theoretical understanding and passing examinations and that he wanted to learn the Buddha’s teaching in a more practical way. So, whenever given opportunity he would approach well known meditation teachers in northern Thailand and learnt from them. Sometime he would go and meditate in the cemetery or on corpses. Unusually quiet and meditative for his age, he was often teased by other novices. But that did not deter him from going into the meditation practice deeper and seriously than any of the monasteries would offer to a young novice of his age.

His serious meditation practice attracted devotees who started making offerings, including money, to him; he donated all the offerings to others. Whenever devotees came, he would also do chanting to invoke blessings of the Buddha on them and explain them the Buddha’s dhamma in simple terms; he usually talked about the admiration he had on the Buddha’s life leading to meditation on the Buddha (Buddhanussati), the Buddha’s teaching on the five precepts; the loathsome nature of the body (asubha-bhavana) and the inevitability of death (maranassati) and meditation on compassion (metta). His chanting took approximately two hours and he did so with deep concentration and a beautiful voice. His chants were all in Pali and what have been preserved in the forest meditation tradition in Lanna, northern Thailand and in the eastern Shan State of Burma. His style and his strong faith in chanting awakened the seed of devotion in many who heard it.

At the age of thirteen and just over two years into the novice-hood, he was well known enough to have attracted generous donors who helped him renovate a chaitiya (pagoda) at the village called Wieng Keau, not far from his birthplace. Since then, he moved from place to place for the observation of rains-retreat (vassana) and in search of solitude and meditation teachers. At the age of 16, he went to meditate in the Pa-sah forest near Mong Phong Village, Tachilek Township in Shan State, Union of Burma, which is, in fact, just the other side of Mekhong River from where he was born. The Pa-sah forest near Mong Phong Village was thick and he liked the seclusion it offered. His presence in the forest has led to the villagers building him a forest monastery, and from that time he came to be known as Sao (Chao) Mong Phong or Venerable Mong Phong (Maing Phone in Burmese pronunciation). Out of devotion, some people would call him Sao Ton Boon (The Venerable Meritorious) or Sao Paw Sildham (the Venerable Father of Higher Morality). His last rains-retreat as a novice was observed in the Himalaya Mountains after a pilgrimage to Buddhagaya in India and Sri Lanka.

In 1984 (B.E 2529) with the sponsorship of Mr. Sai Noom and Mrs. Nang Sam Seng family and Mr. Nan Shwe and Mrs. Nang Swei’s family from Mong Phong Village, Tachilek, he received higher ordination, upasampada, at the seven hundred years old Wat Suan-dok (Flowers Garden) Monastery in Chiang Mai. To symbolize the teaching of the Buddha on the 38 kinds of blessings, 38 monks were invited to participate in the ordination ceremony. Since his higher ordination and out of respect for his meditation practices, he came to be known as Khuva Boonchum. Khuva (Khruva in Thai pronunciation as in Phra Khruva Srivichai, 1878-1938 AD) means teacher and is synonymous with Phra Ajahn in Thai and Sayadaw in Burmese. His ordained name in Pali is Nyanasamvaro, “who guards his mind with wisdom”. In Burmese, he is known as Mong Phong Sayadaw.

After his higher ordination, Khuva Boonchum has always observed his three months rains-retreat (vassana) in a cave in solitude; he has done so in different caves in northern Thailand, northern Shan State of the Union of Burma and the Kingdom of Bhutan where he is known as Lama Khuva. In addition, he would also go into the cave from time to time for rest and meditation.

Over the years he has become an eloquent speaker of the Buddha’s Dhamma and can explain the Dhamma in all Tai family languages that include Thai, Lanna, Laotian, Shan, Dai and Tai Lue. Without any formal study, he has also learnt very quickly, just through hearing, how to speak Bhutanese and some Chinese. He has since given hundreds of Dhamma talks when not in a cave; he usually moves around constantly from village to village never settling in one place for long; and his Pali chanting has also spread far and wide. Occasionally he also does a Tibetan chanting.

Since April 2010 the Venerable Khuva Boonchum has been in a solitary retreat in the Rajagrha cave in Lampang Province, northern Thailand; he is determined to complete a three-years three-months three-weeks and three-days retreat. A life-long vegetarian, he lives on fruits and biscuits that his followers bring all the way and place them at the entrance of the cave. He comes out every now and then to take the food when there is no one around. He observes total silence while in retreat but answers dhamma questions in writing when one is put to him.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-Tu0EsoB7A" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNIsNANNUsk" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

photo: http://www.chiangraifocus.com/forums/in ... c=133775.0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

Access to Insight - Theravada texts
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