If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

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binocular
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by binocular » Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:22 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Apr 13, 2018 3:36 pm
binocular wrote:
Fri Apr 13, 2018 11:18 am
Does someone know of a canonical reference for the claim "Those who believe there is no rebirth hold wrong view"?
And what is wrong view? ‘There’s no meaning in giving, sacrifice, or offerings. There’s no fruit or result of good and bad deeds. There’s no afterlife....'
https://suttacentral.net/mn117/en/sujato
Thank you for the reference.
And what is wrong view? ‘There is nothing given, nothing offered, nothing sacrificed. There is no fruit or result of good or bad actions. There is no this world, no next world, no mother, no father, no spontaneously reborn beings; no contemplatives or brahmans who, faring rightly & practicing rightly, proclaim this world & the next after having directly known & realized it for themselves.’ This is wrong view.
https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/MN/MN117.html
So we have here as an example of wrong view the belief that there is no rebirth, and not a mere lack of beliefs about rebirth (as in the case of the Kalamas, who were confused and unsure about the matter).

So it would seem that not being sure about rebirth is not pernicious (and isn't said to lead to rebirth as an animal or in hell); but being sure that there is none, is.

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Sam Vara
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by Sam Vara » Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:24 pm

binocular wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:35 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Apr 13, 2018 12:37 pm
binocular wrote:
Fri Apr 13, 2018 10:17 am
Depending on how one conceives of this _you_, one will either be able to see _oneself_ as reborn, or not.
If that's the case, then tell us how you conceive of this _you_, and we can take it from there.
That would amount to claiming some attainment! :tongue:
Not really, but feel free if you want to!

I meant just to pick one of the possibilities, and take it from there.
rebirth takes place depending on how this _you_ is conceived of. If no _you_ is conceived, there is no rebirth.
I'm not sure what you mean here; whether the "conceiving" here is by the being that is subject to rebirth; or by us, as onlookers and speculators who conceive what a being must have in order for it to be reborn. The three possibilities you give seem to refer to the former. But if so, there is no reason why a being that does not conceive of itself should not be reborn.

boundless
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by boundless » Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:00 pm

binocular wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:03 pm
boundless wrote:
Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:26 pm
Ironically, total skepticism is a sort of “blind faith”, i.e. the irremovable conviction that it is impossible to know.
It's also a bad faith, not just a blind one.
Bad faith rests on the conviction that if one acted honestly, in good faith, and as one sees fit, this would _necessarily_ lead to suffering for at least oneself. This conviction, when pursued, leads to active malice or ill will.
Hi binocular,

thanks making this good point. I think that the concept of "blind faith" is deep.

I agree that to a certain extent extreme skepticism is due to both "bad faith" and "blind faith". In fact, this kind of skepticism is certain that it is impossible to know: it is a refusal of investigation. IMO it is also "bad faith" because it stops investigation even if the skeptic knows that there is no proof that it is impossibile to know.

Also, the extreme skeptic refuses to admit that there can be other reasons, other than knowledge, to believe.

I do not understand your explanation, however. Why a skeptic would be convinced that "if one acted honestly, in good faith, and as one sees fit, this would _necessarily_ lead to suffering for at least oneself"?.


binocular wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:03 pm
At a certain point we must choose our beliefs, without being too dogmatic (i.e. subject to possible revision). At the same time we should investigate to find the truth ourselves. However, being at least open to the idea that our actions matter and our moral responsibility does not end even at death, certainly helps to behave in a moral way.
This seems very complicated and abstract. I think it's more helpful (and quicker) to look into one's bad faith.

Well, I agree that it is very important to (and challenging sometimes) resolve the issue of bad faith. I can see how it leads to behave morally.

But how does this help with taking sides on karma and rebirth?


:anjali:

binocular
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by binocular » Wed Apr 18, 2018 6:56 pm

boundless wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:00 pm
I do not understand your explanation, however. Why a skeptic would be convinced that "if one acted honestly, in good faith, and as one sees fit, this would _necessarily_ lead to suffering for at least oneself"?.
A person of bad faith is convinced of that.
Mere skepticism carries no emotional or moral impetus. It's when bad faith is added to the skepticism that the skepticism becomes an emotional or moral impetus.
Well, I agree that it is very important to (and challenging sometimes) resolve the issue of bad faith. I can see how it leads to behave morally.
But how does this help with taking sides on karma and rebirth?
I assume that a person without bad faith feels no need to "take sides" (in matters of karma and rebirth, or anything else).
If one lives without the conviction that even one's best efforts could be for naught, everything looks very different.

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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by binocular » Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:46 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:24 pm
rebirth takes place depending on how this _you_ is conceived of. If no _you_ is conceived, there is no rebirth.
I'm not sure what you mean here; whether the "conceiving" here is by the being that is subject to rebirth; or by us, as onlookers and speculators who conceive what a being must have in order for it to be reborn. The three possibilities you give seem to refer to the former. But if so, there is no reason why a being that does not conceive of itself should not be reborn.
(Leaving aside that I've been heavily relying on the words having multiple of complex meanings --)
You said earlier:
Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 7:40 pm
And in causal, temporal terms, it might be claimed that the Right View involving rebirth was part of the perfection of the path which led to one knowing the truth of rebirth.
If not conceiving of oneself is arrived at through the right practice (as opposed to being an infant (who also doesn't conceive of himself), or being a person who consumes psychoactive substances (and who due to the effects of those substances doesn't conceive of themselves)), then that should entail the end of becoming.
Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:24 pm
I'm not sure what you mean here; whether the "conceiving" here is by the being that is subject to rebirth; or by us, as onlookers and speculators who conceive what a being must have in order for it to be reborn. The three possibilities you give seem to refer to the former. But if so, there is no reason why a being that does not conceive of itself should not be reborn.
I'm not sure wht you mean here.
Do you think it is possible for an arahant to be reborn, and for this rebirth to be attested by other people?

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Sam Vara
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Apr 18, 2018 8:30 pm

binocular wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:46 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:24 pm
I'm not sure what you mean here; whether the "conceiving" here is by the being that is subject to rebirth; or by us, as onlookers and speculators who conceive what a being must have in order for it to be reborn. The three possibilities you give seem to refer to the former. But if so, there is no reason why a being that does not conceive of itself should not be reborn.
I'm not sure wht you mean here.
Do you think it is possible for an arahant to be reborn, and for this rebirth to be attested by other people?
No, I mean that it would be possible for a being that did not conceive of itself (an animal, for example) to be reborn.

boundless
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by boundless » Wed Apr 18, 2018 8:41 pm

binocular wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 6:56 pm
boundless wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:00 pm
I do not understand your explanation, however. Why a skeptic would be convinced that "if one acted honestly, in good faith, and as one sees fit, this would _necessarily_ lead to suffering for at least oneself"?.
A person of bad faith is convinced of that.
Mere skepticism carries no emotional or moral impetus. It's when bad faith is added to the skepticism that the skepticism becomes an emotional or moral impetus.
Well, I agree that it is very important to (and challenging sometimes) resolve the issue of bad faith. I can see how it leads to behave morally.
But how does this help with taking sides on karma and rebirth?
I assume that a person without bad faith feels no need to "take sides" (in matters of karma and rebirth, or anything else).
If one lives without the conviction that even one's best efforts could be for naught, everything looks very different.
Thank you for this insight! Very interesting.

I have to reflect on this.

:anjali:

binocular
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by binocular » Thu Apr 19, 2018 11:51 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 8:30 pm
No, I mean that it would be possible for a being that did not conceive of itself (an animal, for example) to be reborn.
I don't know whether animals conceive of themselves, so the point is moot. (Although my intuition is to think that they do conceive of themselves.)

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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by Sam Vara » Thu Apr 19, 2018 11:59 am

binocular wrote:
Thu Apr 19, 2018 11:51 am
Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 8:30 pm
No, I mean that it would be possible for a being that did not conceive of itself (an animal, for example) to be reborn.
I don't know whether animals conceive of themselves, so the point is moot. (Although my intuition is to think that they do conceive of themselves.)
My point is that animals might well be reborn despite having no conception of themselves, so in general terms a lack of "belief in rebirth" is no bar to that rebirth.

binocular
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Re: If _you_ don't believe in rebirth, can _you_ be reborn?

Post by binocular » Thu Apr 19, 2018 12:36 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Thu Apr 19, 2018 11:59 am
My point is that animals might well be reborn despite having no conception of themselves, so in general terms a lack of "belief in rebirth" is no bar to that rebirth.
Like I said earlier:
binocular wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:46 pm
If not conceiving of oneself is arrived at through the right practice (as opposed to being an infant (who also doesn't conceive of himself), or being a person who consumes psychoactive substances (and who due to the effects of those substances doesn't conceive of themselves)), then that should entail the end of becoming.
We state that being an animal is not the right practice with which to arrive at not conceiving of oneself.

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