Re-Birth

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
frankboase244
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Re-Birth

Post by frankboase244 »

Yes, I know we've all be here before (pun intended).
But my questions are;
What is Reborn?
Has anybody considered the role of genetics in Rebirth?
dharmacorps
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by dharmacorps »

"what is reborn" is a complicated issue and there are innumerable threads about this. I recommend searching for those.

Genetics have nothing to do with rebirth because genes only exist in the physical form, which isn't reborn. The body and its genes are born, ages, gets old, dies, rots, and disappears.
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Ceisiwr
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by Ceisiwr »

An empty process carries on. Dhammas arises and cease according to cause and conditions.
"Because of attachment to doctrines one approaches and refutes,
For those unattached, how can they dispute?
Not because self or no-self are said to be true,
He has only shaken off all harmful views."


Duṭṭhaṭṭhaka Sutta
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DooDoot
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by DooDoot »

Ceisiwr wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:47 pm An empty process carries on. Dhammas arises and cease according to cause and conditions.
The above Buddhaghosa doctrine appears contrary to what the suttas teach. The suttas appear to teach "a being" is "re-born". Since the suttas define emptiness as empty of self (SN 35.85) and define "a being" as including "view of self" (SN 23.2; SN 5.10), obviously emptiness cannot be reborn. This appears why MN 121, for example, says emptiness is empty of becoming.
frankboase244 wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 3:10 pm Yes, I know we've all be here before (pun intended).
But my questions are;
What is Reborn?
It appears what is "re-born" are called "underlying mental tendencies" ("anusaya") & the associated psychological results ("vipaka") of one's actions ("kamma"). For example, if you do violence to other person causing the other person pain, it appears you will be later re-born into a painful state (such as "hell") when the conditions allow the underlying pain within yourself to come to fruition or "ripen". The urge of violence both produces inner pain to both the doer and the recipient. Therefore, later, the doer of violence is reborn into a painful state, including "hell". For example, soldiers returned from war can have PTSD or commit suicide. This shows how rebirth works; both now & in the future.
frankboase244 wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 3:10 pm Has anybody considered the role of genetics in Rebirth?
Yes. It appears the scriptures say certain impairments of the physical & mental faculties of individuals may prevent them from realizing the Noble Eightfold Path (AN 6.96). If this is the case then a genetically impaired individual may not be able to stop rebirth from happening. The scriptures (AN 6.63) teach the Noble Eightfold Path ends kamma (and its rebirth results).

Kind regards :smile:
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Aloka
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by Aloka »

frankboase244 wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 3:10 pm Yes, I know we've all be here before (pun intended).
But my questions are;
What is Reborn?

Endless speculation about rebirth is what is reborn.


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lostitude
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by lostitude »

dharmacorps wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:45 pm
Genetics have nothing to do with rebirth because genes only exist in the physical form, which isn't reborn.
Technically I believe this is incorrect. A gene can be passed on precisely because it is not physical. It's a pattern of molecules assembled in a certain way within DNA. In that sense most of the genes we carry are millions of years old. A very interesting read about this is Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene.
justindesilva
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by justindesilva »

dharmacorps wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:45 pm "what is reborn" is a complicated issue and there are innumerable threads about this. I recommend searching for those.

Genetics have nothing to do with rebirth because genes only exist in the physical form, which isn't reborn. The body and its genes are born, ages, gets old, dies, rots, and disappears.
If we try to prove rebirth in connection with genes and our physical body then there is no hope, because rebirth is a subject to be discussed with the mind or citta. It is the cuti citta that decides where and the next status of ones rebecoming will be. The chance that a human being will be followed by another human life is extremely rare.
takso
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by takso »

Aloka wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 9:27 pm Endless speculation about rebirth is what is reborn.
The Buddha sees in no transmigration of all things or matters but instead, the constant and continuous transformation of all things or matters via the process of permeation (diffusion). Just like the orientation of energy in the cosmos i.e. energy would only transform - to transform is to change, to change is to become, and to become is to reborn. So, energy is ever reborn all the time in the dependent nature.

For example, a flame is transferred from one candle to another, or a fire spreads from one field to another. In the same way that it depends on the original fire, there is a conditioned relationship between one life and the next; they are not identical but neither are they completely distinct.

The principle in effect: -

This arising (the cause and condition), - KAMMA
that arises (the result), - VIPAKA

This ceasing (the cause and condition), - KAMMA
that ceases (the result). – VIPAKA

The continuous reborn element in the above conditions is the VIPAKA.
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Mahabrahma
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by Mahabrahma »

You.

However you want to put it.

As you pass from youth to middle age to old age, similarly you pass to another body after death. If you are Enlightened, you will not be bewildered by such a change.
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Ceisiwr
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by Ceisiwr »

Mahabrahma wrote: Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:05 am You.

However you want to put it.

As you pass from youth to middle age to old age, similarly you pass to another body after death. If you are Enlightened, you will not be bewildered by such a change.
What is this “you”?
"Because of attachment to doctrines one approaches and refutes,
For those unattached, how can they dispute?
Not because self or no-self are said to be true,
He has only shaken off all harmful views."


Duṭṭhaṭṭhaka Sutta
santa100
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by santa100 »

frankboase244 wrote:What is Reborn?
Nothing and Everything. Nothing is because there's just the arising of the Five Aggregates without a Self. And everything is because even the most minuscule trace of wholesome and unwholesome Kamma will be carried over.
Has anybody considered the role of genetics in Rebirth?
While genetics can explain the mechanism of how things operate, or the "how", it won't be able to explain the "why". Sure, that smart kid back in your 5th grade class was born in a prestigious wealthy family, whose dad was a quantum physicist and mom was a neurosurgeon, and he himself started playing the piano and wrote the first piece of software program since 3rd grade. But "why" it was him, but not you who was born into that family? That's something genetics won't be able to answer.
justindesilva
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by justindesilva »

Mahabrahma wrote: Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:05 am You.

However you want to put it.

As you pass from youth to middle age to old age, similarly you pass to another body after death. If you are Enlightened, you will not be bewildered by such a change.
Please refer to Paticca samuppada. That explains the process of samsara. I refrain here from explaining it as it is in the internet. And as queried " you" in general is an organism as a human being here that gets rebecome depending on kusal or akusal with kamma vipaka.
lostitude
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by lostitude »

santa100 wrote: Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:33 pmSure, that smart kid back in your 5th grade class was born in a prestigious wealthy family, whose dad was a quantum physicist and mom was a neurosurgeon, and he himself started playing the piano and wrote the first piece of software program since 3rd grade. But "why" it was him, but not you who was born into that family? That's something genetics won't be able to answer.
It seems to me there is a logical fallacy here. What makes this smart kid "him" and not "you" is precisely this set of characteristics. People are defined not by an absolute identity, but by the sum of all those little details that make them different from others. So if "you" were born in that family and played the piano etc. exactly like what you describe, then "you" would be that person instead of "him". So the question "why him, not me" actually makes no sense. It’s like saying why is red red, and blue not red. Well if blue was red, it would be red, not blue.
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by SteRo »

frankboase244 wrote: Mon Sep 21, 2020 3:10 pm Yes, I know we've all be here before (pun intended).
But my questions are;
What is Reborn?
Has anybody considered the role of genetics in Rebirth?
Approach not appropriate. The question should be: What might be the effect of the idea of "rebirth"? And the answer could be: Attenuation of clinging to (this) life.
Exhaling अ and inhaling धीः amounts to བྷྲཱུཾ་བི་ཤྭ་བི་ཤུད་དྷེ It's definitely not science but science may provide guidelines nevertheless.
santa100
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Re: Re-Birth

Post by santa100 »

lostitude wrote: Wed Sep 23, 2020 8:26 pm It seems to me there is a logical fallacy here. What makes this smart kid "him" and not "you" is precisely this set of characteristics. People are defined not by an absolute identity, but by the sum of all those little details that make them different from others. So if "you" were born in that family and played the piano etc. exactly like what you describe, then "you" would be that person instead of "him". So the question "why him, not me" actually makes no sense. It’s like saying why is red red, and blue not red. Well if blue was red, it would be red, not blue.
We're talking on the conventional level here, and there's nothing false about what I just said. Conventionally, there's a "Lostitude" who is not his 5th grade classmate, John Doe, who was born a genius and right now is a managing director at some big company, while you, Lostitude, is not. So, back to the topic of genetics brought up in the OP, while genetics could explain the relationship of good genetic code being passed on from his quantum physics dad and neurosurgeon mom, it cannot explain why John Doe is in this spot, but not you, Lostitude, who might very well also have parents of high IQs. And this is where the Buddhist's law of causation and the theory of Kamma come into play. One'd have to rely on the Kammic model to explain why 2 separate entities: Lostitude and John Doe, while being born in the same year, might be the same month, and date, but subjected to 2 vastly different lives, one has everything working in his favor, while the other does not.
Last edited by santa100 on Wed Sep 23, 2020 8:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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