If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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SarathW
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If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by SarathW » Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:17 am

If I am reborn, it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?
If I take the one life model at least I know that if I live tomorrow it is better to save for tomorrow.
I know I have this body tomorrow and I can give it food and shelter.
If I die and reborn there is know that assurance.
If I am reborn it is a different aggregate altogether.
For instance how I was I in last birth is no bearing on me.

In Sri Lanka sometimes we have to wait for about ten years to get fruits from certain plants.
But we plant them for the future generation.
That makes sense for me.

What really matters is to be happy in this life.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

thepea
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by thepea » Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:34 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:17 am
If I am reborn, it is not me.
Who says this?

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Lucas Oliveira
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by Lucas Oliveira » Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:36 am

"Now, Kalamas, one who is a disciple of the noble ones — his mind thus free from hostility, free from ill will, undefiled, & pure — acquires four assurances in the here-&-now:

"'If there is a world after death, if there is the fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then this is the basis by which, with the break-up of the body, after death, I will reappear in a good destination, the heavenly world.' This is the first assurance he acquires.

"'But if there is no world after death, if there is no fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then here in the present life I look after myself with ease — free from hostility, free from ill will, free from trouble.' This is the second assurance he acquires.

"'If evil is done through acting, still I have willed no evil for anyone. Having done no evil action, from where will suffering touch me?' This is the third assurance he acquires.

"'But if no evil is done through acting, then I can assume myself pure in both respects.' This is the fourth assurance he acquires.

"One who is a disciple of the noble ones — his mind thus free from hostility, free from ill will, undefiled, & pure — acquires these four assurances in the here-&-now."

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Verse 71. Sin Is Like Sparks Of Fire Hidden In Ashes
As milk, is evil kamma done,
so slowly does it sour.
Smouldering does it follow the fool
like fire with ashes covered.

Explanation: When an ignorance person commits an act of sin, it does not immediately yield bad results. This is like the freshly extracted milk, which does not curdle immediately on being extracted from the cow’s udder. The sin that has been committed remains concealed like the sparks covered with ashes, and continues to follow and burn the doer of sins.
http://www.buddhanet.net/dhammapada/d_fools.htm

Verse 127. Shelter Against Death
Neither in sky nor surrounding by sea,
nor by dwelling in a mountain cave,
nowhere is found that place in earth
where one’s from evil kamma free.

Explanation: There is not a single spot on Earth an evil-doer can take shelter in to escape the results of evil actions. No such place is seen out there in space, or in the middle of the ocean. Neither in an opening, a cleft or a crevice in a rocky mountain can he shelter to escape the results of his evil action.
http://www.buddhanet.net/dhammapada/d_evil.htm

:anjali:
I participate in this forum using Google Translator. http://translate.google.com.br

http://www.acessoaoinsight.net/

Circle5
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by Circle5 » Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:18 am

Because there might be suffering arising in that next life. It is not a person who suffers, it is just suffering arising. But there is still this suffering arising.

Only 5 animals have a sense of self. And yet, they all avoid suffering.

Plants do not even have consciousness or feeling. They are identical to robots, there is not even pleasant or unpleasant feeling arising in plants. And yet, they all avoid dying and some even have complicated mechanisms to prevent that. In the same way, humans are built in such a way that makes them try to avoid suffering.

Even when you say this:
What really matters is to be happy in this life.
You're proving this programming.

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DNS
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by DNS » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:05 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:17 am
If I am reborn it is a different aggregate altogether.
The aggregates are not self. If they were self, we'd all be annihilated at death (physicalism-materialism).

Yes, there is anatta, but the Buddha still spoke of his previous births as if those past lives were "him" in some sort of continuation and continuity.

SarathW
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by SarathW » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:30 am

Yes, there is anatta,
Could you explain this, please?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

SarathW
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by SarathW » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:32 am

"'But if there is no world after death, if there is no fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then here in the present life I look after myself with ease — free from hostility, free from ill will, free from trouble.' This is the second assurance he acquires.
:goodpost:
I think this statement is made a lot of sense to many of us.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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dylanj
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by dylanj » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:45 am

The 5 aggregates are constantly changing & never the same even in this life.

Actually to think that because the 5 aggregates cease at death means the aggregates that arise next is to take your 5 aggregates & current identity as self.

There's not an inherent difference between the cessation & subsequent rearising of the 5 aggregates that occurs here & now, & that which occurs at death. In both cases they cease, in both cases they arise again.

So you see that if you think the being that is reborn is totally different than you, you must conclude the exact same as the future "you" within this very life.

In actuality different & same are both invalid here. Both rely on self-view.

& in a conventional sense I think it's better to say the being that is reborn is you. When Anāthapiṇḍika died & was spontaneously reborn as a devaputta the Buddha declared "that is Anāthapiṇḍika". & the newly born Anāthapiṇḍika Devaputta referred to Sāriputta based on his prior familiarity with him.

So to the extent that there is a "you" here & now there will be a you in a future life - not to a lesser extent. There is no self there, but there's no self here & now as well as in the future.

So if you don't grasp at your "current" aggregates as a persisting, compact, existing unit but instead see them as an inconstant, heaped-up, becoming process then there's no relevance to their cessation, here & now or at the time of death, with regard to the continuity of that process.
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

Upeksha
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by Upeksha » Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:05 am

In short: sankharas.

We know our children will be different in just about every conceivable way from age 3 to 33. But, at age 3 we care greatly about teaching them morals, how to be literate and numerate, how to relate to other people etc. Why? Because we know that the habits they develop at 3 will be manifest in certain ways at 33.

i.e. the thing that ensures continuity or a 'mental stream' are the dispositions we accumulate through a life.

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cappuccino
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by cappuccino » Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:09 am

karma is the idea that you can't escape yourself

Nirvana is the idea that you can

SarathW
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by SarathW » Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:47 am

Because we know that the habits they develop at 3 will be manifest in certain ways at 33.
Agree. This work in the one life model.
But it does not give assurance if there is a next life.
What I am saying is perhaps I will identify me as say "James" in next life.
Last edited by SarathW on Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Nwad
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by Nwad » Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:50 am

Because good fruits of Dhamma practice are visible in this very life :stirthepot:

Upeksha
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by Upeksha » Sun Mar 04, 2018 5:23 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:47 am
Because we know that the habits they develop at 3 will be manifest in certain ways at 33.
Agree. This work in the one life model.
But it does not give assurance if there is a next life.
What I am saying is perhaps I will identify me as say "James" in next life.
Well, it could be worth exploring how much reality or truth there is your identifying as 'SarathW" in this life. What I am suggesting is that it is neither your name nor your form which gives you your current sense of 'me'ness' - it is rather, your mental and emotional habits and dispositions.

One should of course go beyond identifying oneself as these too - for such a thing is the root constraint. But it is not an easy task!

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No_Mind
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by No_Mind » Sun Mar 04, 2018 5:35 am

Upeksha wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:05 am
In short: sankharas.

We know our children will be different in just about every conceivable way from age 3 to 33. But, at age 3 we care greatly about teaching them morals, how to be literate and numerate, how to relate to other people etc. Why? Because we know that the habits they develop at 3 will be manifest in certain ways at 33.

i.e. the thing that ensures continuity or a 'mental stream' are the dispositions we accumulate through a life.
That analogy is not quite true. They will have same genome (if they are fair and blue eyed at age 3 they will be fair and blue eyed at age 33 .. not possible that they will turn dark skinned and have curly black hair)

What is taught at age 3 is preserved in the same brain .. because brain is a biochemical storage device individual cells maybe swapped out but the memory imprint remains (through mechanism of synaptic plasticity and long term potentiation) .. if at age 3 one loses both eyes in an accident one will still be blind at 33 .. not that the eyes will be regenerated.

I am not the same person I was 10 years ago .. my cells have changed, my bones have changed .. is an overused analogy .. it proves nothing in this case.

In fact it proves the opposite .. I have changed yet I am the same .. provides a door to the possibility of an eternal unchanging soul residing inside the mass of biological materials that is called No_Mind.

:namaste:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

Garrib
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Re: If I am reborn it is not me. So why I care about the rebirth?

Post by Garrib » Sun Mar 04, 2018 6:43 am

It has already been (more or less) stated by others but I will reiterate: If you identify with, or care about, the 5 aggregates that are arising and ceasing at this very moment, in this life, you should understand why it makes sense to care about what happens beyond this life. Because there is no essential difference - there is no real self in this life, and there will not be in the future...so with the same logic one could say, "The person experiencing my life right now is not actually me, so why should I care about this life?" That seems pretty nonsensical to me.

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