the great rebirth debate

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Wed Aug 05, 2009 7:29 pm

In reguards to consciousness in general


"Then the thought occurred to me, 'Aging & death exist when what exists? From what as a requisite condition is there aging & death?' From my appropriate attention there came the breakthrough of discernment: 'Aging & death exist when birth exists. From birth as a requisite condition comes aging & death.' Then the thought occurred to me, 'Birth exists when what exists? From what as a requisite condition comes birth?' From my appropriate attention there came the breakthrough of discernment: 'Birth exists when becoming exists. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth... 'Name-&-form exists when what exists? From what as a requisite condition is there name-&-form?' From my appropriate attention there came the breakthrough of discernment: 'Name-&-form exists when consciousness exists. From consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form.' Then the thought occurred to me, 'Consciousness exists when what exists? From what as a requisite condition comes consciousness?' From my appropriate attention there came the breakthrough of discernment: 'Consciousness exists when name-&-form exists. From name-&-form as a requisite condition comes consciousness.'


"Then the thought occurred to me, 'This consciousness turns back at name-&-form, and goes no farther. It is to this extent that there is birth, aging, death, falling away, & re-arising, i.e., from name-&-form as a requisite condition comes consciousness, from consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form. From name-&-form as a requisite condition come the six sense media... Thus is the origination of this entire mass of stress. Origination, origination.' Vision arose, clear knowing arose, discernment arose, knowledge arose, illumination arose within me with regard to things never heard before.



Bhikkhus, founded on whatever, consciousness arises, it is reckoned on that. On account of eye and forms arises consciousness, it’s reckoned eye consciousness. On account of ear and sounds arises consciousness, it’s reckoned ear consciousness. On account of nose and smells arises consciousness, it’s reckoned nose consciousness. On account of tongue and tastes arises consciousness, it’s reckoned tongue consciousness.On account of body and touches arises consciousness, it’s reckoned body consciousness. On account of mind and ideas arises consciousness, it’s reckoned mind consciousness. Bhikkhus, just as based on whatever fire burns, it is reckoned by that. Fire ablaze with sticks is stick fire. Ablaze with twigs is twig fire. Ablaze with grass is grass fire. Ablaze with cowdung is cowdung fire. Ablaze with grain thrash is grain thrash fire. Ablaze with dirt is dirt fire. In the same manner consciousness on account is eye and forms is eye consciousness. Consciousness on account of ear and sounds is ear consciousness. Consciousness on account of nose and smells is nose conscioussness. Consciousness on account of tongue and tastes is taste consciousness. Consciousness on account of body and touches is body consciousness. Consciousness on account of mind and ideas is mind consciousness.


http://www.vipassana.info/037-culatanha ... tta-e1.htm
Open your mind and see, open your mind and rise. Shine the light of wisdom and see, don't wait till the end of time.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:34 pm

Hi Craig,
clw_uk wrote:P.S. I might not have been to clear on some points, im a bit tired, so ask me to clarify if you like

Thank you for your responses. Obviously, your answer to my question is "no". The Buddha only warns about past and future in terms of "I", not in terms of process.

One should not do this:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nana.html
"And how, monks, does one yearn for the future? He thinks: 'I may have such form in the future' and brings delight to bear on it. He thinks: 'I may have such feeling... such perception... such formations...'... He thinks: 'I may have such consciousness in the future' and brings delight to bear on it. That is how, monks, one yearns for the future.


One should do this:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"Just as an oil lamp burns in dependence on oil & wick; and from the termination of the oil & wick — and from not being provided any other sustenance — it goes out unnourished; even so, when sensing a feeling limited to the body, one discerns that 'I am sensing a feeling limited to the body.' When sensing a feeling limited to life, one discerns that 'I am sensing a feeling limited to life.' One discerns that 'With the break-up of the body, after the termination of life, all that is sensed, not being relished, will grow cold right here.'


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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby clw_uk » Wed Aug 12, 2009 3:50 pm

Hey Mike



"Just as an oil lamp burns in dependence on oil & wick; and from the termination of the oil & wick — and from not being provided any other sustenance — it goes out unnourished; even so, when sensing a feeling limited to the body, one discerns that 'I am sensing a feeling limited to the body.' When sensing a feeling limited to life, one discerns that 'I am sensing a feeling limited to life.' One discerns that 'With the break-up of the body, after the termination of life, all that is sensed, not being relished, will grow cold right here.'


Notice though how this is all done in the present moment, not with looking forward and back. If one looks forward or back then one engages in "I" making, this is my view and understanding at any rate


metta
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Aug 13, 2009 4:54 am

clw_uk wrote:Notice though how this is all done in the present moment, not with looking forward and back. If one looks forward or back then one engages in "I" making, this is my view and understanding at any rate

Of course, all thinking happens in the present, but this thinking is about the future:
With the break-up of the body, after the termination of life, all that is sensed, not being relished, will grow cold right here

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby salaatti » Wed Sep 16, 2009 12:47 pm

In the dhammapada Buddha says:

"Let go of the past, let go of the future, let go of the present, and cross over to the farther shore of existence. With mind wholly liberated, you shall come no more to birth and death."

Some have said that this means that birth and death are only concepts that have no place in reality. Is this the correct interpretation?
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Sep 16, 2009 2:16 pm

salaatti wrote:In the dhammapada Buddha says:

"Let go of the past, let go of the future, let go of the present, and cross over to the farther shore of existence. With mind wholly liberated, you shall come no more to birth and death."

Some have said that this means that birth and death are only concepts that have no place in reality. Is this the correct interpretation?


That is one way some people look at things, but it is not necessarily the only way to look at things. To do it that way one has to twist things arround a bit.

The Buddha taught rebirth as this passage suggests.
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 clw_uk » Wed Sep 16, 2009 5:06 pm

salaatti wrote:In the dhammapada Buddha says:

"Let go of the past, let go of the future, let go of the present, and cross over to the farther shore of existence. With mind wholly liberated, you shall come no more to birth and death."

Some have said that this means that birth and death are only concepts that have no place in reality. Is this the correct interpretation?





A basic explanation that I would give is that when a mind is liberated it no longer gets born into happines or born into sadness



We must see that there is no reason to be born. Born in what way?
Born into gladness: When we get something we like we are glad over
it. If there is no clinging to that gladness there is no birth; if there is
clinging, this is called ‘birth’. So if we get something, we aren’t born
(into gladness). If we lose, then we aren’t born (into sorrow). This
is the birthless and the deathless. Birth and death are both founded in
clinging to and cherishing the san˙kha¯ras.

So the Buddha said. “There is no more becoming for me, finished
is the holy life, this is my last birth.” There! He knew the birthless and
the deathless. This is what the Buddha constantly exhorted his disciples
to know. This is the right practice. If you don’t reach it, if you don’t
reach the Middle Way, then you won’t transcend suffering


Ajahn Chah

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Sep 16, 2009 7:25 pm

clw_uk wrote:
salaatti wrote:In the dhammapada Buddha says:

"Let go of the past, let go of the future, let go of the present, and cross over to the farther shore of existence. With mind wholly liberated, you shall come no more to birth and death."

Some have said that this means that birth and death are only concepts that have no place in reality. Is this the correct interpretation?





A basic explanation that I would give is that when a mind is liberated it no longer gets born into happiness or born into sadness


What really gets ya is when happiness reaches old age and gets sick before it dies.
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 phil » Sat Sep 19, 2009 12:05 pm

Hi Peter

Peter wrote:Right there Batchelor highlights what I think is the difference between believing in something and adopting a view. Buddhism in fact never talks about believing in rebirth; it talks about adopting the view of rebirth, behaving as if it were true.


Thanks for putting this so clearly, it's something I've vaguely been throwing around in my head. Does it come from the Kalama sutta or elsewhere? I remember something about accepting something provisionally, accepting it for the sake of accepting it even without fully ascribing(?) to it or something like that. Could you or someone identify that passage for me? Thanks.

I definitely beliving in behaving as though I believed in rebirth even without being able to fully believe in it, and it doesn't feel hypocritical or foolish to do so, it is very effective in weaking harmful tendencies. And there are so many indisputably true and hugely helpful things the Buddha has taught me(us) that He gets the benefit of doubt on the teachings that are harder to accept logically or whatever.

Metta,

Phil
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby salaatti » Thu Nov 19, 2009 10:46 am

What is difficult for me to understand, is that why Buddhist teachers have different views on rebirth. They do the same practice, which is supposed to lead to understanding of the mind and reality. But still buddhists teachers (even from the same sect) have very different opinions on this. Why do you think this is?
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby BlackBird » Fri Nov 20, 2009 2:02 am

Hi Salaatti

The vast majority of Buddhist teachers actually have pretty similar views as to 'post-mortem continuance' for want of a more fluid phrase. Assuming that's what you were talking about

I can only think of one that doesn't, and even then, he only went so far as to de-emphasise it, not to deny it. Perhaps this shows my lack of depth of understanding on this issue, I don't know.
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby J-Jay » Fri Nov 20, 2009 12:31 pm

I have always wondered, that if there is no self, then isn't there no one to attain Nibbana?
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Nov 20, 2009 2:06 pm

So what is the conclusions that have been made here?
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:10 pm

Manapa wrote:So what is the conclusions that have been made here?

Can there ever be any conclusion to such debates?

There are two extreme wrong views — eternalism and annihllationism. The Middle Way taught by the Buddha avoids these two extremes. Whatever conclusion readers come to will depend on the view that they incline towards.

Others may realise that coming to any conclusion is merely grasping at a view.

As long as ignorance and craving remain, there is rebirth after death, but it is not a self that is reborn. The process of saṃsāra continues unabated until ignorance is eradicated. The Dhamma was taught by the Buddha to lead beings out of the cycle of saṃsāra.

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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:19 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:
Manapa wrote:So what is the conclusions that have been made here?

Can there ever be any conclusion to such debates?

There are two extreme wrong views — eternalism and annihllationism. The Middle Way taught by the Buddha avoids these two extremes. Whatever conclusion readers come to will depend on the view that they incline towards.

Others may realise that coming to any conclusion is merely grasping at a view.

As long as ignorance and craving remain, there is rebirth after death, but it is not a self that is reborn. The process of saṃsāra continues unabated until ignorance is eradicated. The Dhamma was taught by the Buddha to lead beings out of the cycle of saṃsāra.

The Advantages of Realising Anattā


so you idn't get it :tongue:
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby pink_trike » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:38 pm


Imo, the author has included an "inner" explanation of anatta in this commentary that likely would not have been shared in the past with students of little or basic exposure to teachings and practice.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby nowheat » Mon Nov 23, 2009 8:40 am

salaatti wrote:What is difficult for me to understand, is that why Buddhist teachers have different views on rebirth. They do the same practice, which is supposed to lead to understanding of the mind and reality. But still buddhists teachers (even from the same sect) have very different opinions on this. Why do you think this is?

It's because some teachers understand the way in which the Buddha taught, which is largely through metaphors; and some tend to take the Buddha's words quite literally. The teachers who take metaphors about, for example, "birth, old age, and death" literally do so out of a sense of respect for the Buddha and for the traditions of honoring the words that have been passed down for generations. The teachers who understand "birth, old age, and death" as metaphors also respect the Buddha's words, but they have seen that the literal interpretations reveal an internal inconsistency in the teachings, and so they have looked further, trying to understand the words through the context of the Buddha's times, and they find a meaning there that contradicts what the traditions teach, but makes the Buddha's teachings hang together with strong internal consistency, and verifiable through practice.

Since I fall in the "birth, old age, and death" is a metaphor category, I cannot speak for the practice of those who believe the Buddha taught rebirth. Maybe they will tell us what evidence they find, on the cushion, that supports a belief in rebirth. In my own practice, I find no evidence, only speculative views about rebirth. I find compassion is naturally generated by an understanding of suffering and its origins, and how this is something we all have in common; and through an understanding of the transient nature of all life. I find that the concept of kamma as applying to rebirth only causes a perverse clinging to the view of self that is not only unnecessary to living a moral life, but is counter-productive.

:namaste:
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Nov 23, 2009 9:56 am

nowheat wrote: It's because some teachers understand the way in which the Buddha taught, which is largely through metaphors; and some tend to take the Buddha's words quite literally. The teachers who take metaphors about, for example, "birth, old age, and death" literally do so out of a sense of respect for the Buddha

Or they could see that via their own meditative experience that the teachings of rebirth are true and that the texts are quite internally coherent.

The teachers who understand "birth, old age, and death" as metaphors also respect the Buddha's words, but they have seen that the literal interpretations reveal an internal inconsistency in the teachings,
Inconsistencies? Not at all that I have ever seen anyone conclusively or compellingly demonstrate. It seems, rather, that many of those who try to deny that rebirth is taught in the suttas as being literal have to go out of their way to try to get the texts say something other than what they say, which is graphically illustrated at length in this thread.

A further comment. There very well may be teachers for whom rebirth is a directed, experienced fact, which is why they teach it. You bipolar division really does not cover all the possibilities.
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 nowheat » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:29 am

tiltbillings wrote:There very well may be teachers for whom rebirth is a directed, experienced fact, which is why they teach it.

So glad you agree with me, tb. And I hope they come join the conversation and tell us about their experience.
:namaste:
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:36 am

nowheat wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:There very well may be teachers for whom rebirth is a directed, experienced fact, which is why they teach it.

So glad you agree with me, tb. And I hope they come join the conversation and tell us about their experience.
I am not sure I am agreeing with you, and as far as the teachers I have talked to about this issue who said that they have knowledge of rebirth, as a part of their meditative experience, did not go into great detail, and nor did I ask.
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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