Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
lostitude
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Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by lostitude » Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:10 pm

Hello,

I've been wondering this for a while. In theravada theory, is there a strict one-to-one match from life to life, or can one die and then give rise to many?

Thanks.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Jul 27, 2019 1:59 pm

lostitude wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:10 pm
Hello,

I've been wondering this for a while. In theravada theory, is there a strict one-to-one match from life to life, or can one die and then give rise to many?

Thanks.
I remember a video with the Dalai Lama saying that one might be reborn as a cloud of mosquitoes, but don't know whether he was joking or not. I can't recall ever having seen one life giving rise to multiple lives being mentioned in the canon.

It's a good question, the answer to which would say something about one's conception of anatta.

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Polar Bear
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by Polar Bear » Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:05 pm

Dhammanando wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:34 am
Shaswata_Panja wrote:Is it possible that one may be reborn as many and many may be reborn as one?
Apparently not, for the mental continuum is not conceived as being capable of either generating forks or being fed by tributaries.

If it could generate forks, then it would be false to say that “consciousness is lone-faring” (ekacaraṃ cittaṃ — Dhp. 37).

And if it could be fed by tributaries, then it would be false to say “I am the owner of my kamma, the heir of my kamma... etc.” (kammassako’mhi kammadāyādo — AN. iii. 73), for I would in fact be the heir of the kammas of a plurality of beings.

As to why this is the case, I believe the question is wrongly put. The absence of forks and tributaries in the mental continuum is a sheer brute fact rather than something that stands in need of explanation. That being so, any proffered explanation will at best be no more than a restatement of the facts.
:anjali:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

justindesilva
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by justindesilva » Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:42 pm

lostitude wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:10 pm
Hello,

I've been wondering this for a while. In theravada theory, is there a strict one-to-one match from life to life, or can one die and then give rise to many?

Thanks.
According to paticca samuppada it is not possible. The 12 nidanas is restricted to the conditioning of a single being travelling through
Samsara.

lostitude
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by lostitude » Sat Jul 27, 2019 3:57 pm

Thank you.

Caodemarte
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by Caodemarte » Sat Jul 27, 2019 4:23 pm

justindesilva wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:42 pm
lostitude wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:10 pm
Hello,

I've been wondering this for a while. In theravada theory, is there a strict one-to-one match from life to life, or can one die and then give rise to many?

Thanks.
According to paticca samuppada it is not possible. The 12 nidanas is restricted to the conditioning of a single being travelling through
Samsara.
Since there are no really existing beings in Theravada theory and the word “rebecoming” is used throughout the Pali canon (no use of “reincarnation”) this is a question that does not really work in a Buddhist context. In (non-Theravada) Tibetan Buddhism, for example, there have been several “rebecomings” of the Dalai Lama in several different “persons” at the same time. All that “rebecomes” is a tendency, not a distinct, existing personality so this makes perfect sense in Buddhist terms (not that I am necessarily a follower of Tibetan Buddhism!).

SarathW
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by SarathW » Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:31 pm

justindesilva wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:42 pm
lostitude wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:10 pm
Hello,

I've been wondering this for a while. In theravada theory, is there a strict one-to-one match from life to life, or can one die and then give rise to many?

Thanks.
According to paticca samuppada it is not possible. The 12 nidanas is restricted to the conditioning of a single being travelling through
Samsara.
This is a utter wrong view!
Buddha very clearly rejected this.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

confusedlayman
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by confusedlayman » Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:46 pm

SarathW wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:31 pm
justindesilva wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:42 pm
lostitude wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:10 pm
Hello,

I've been wondering this for a while. In theravada theory, is there a strict one-to-one match from life to life, or can one die and then give rise to many?

Thanks.
According to paticca samuppada it is not possible. The 12 nidanas is restricted to the conditioning of a single being travelling through
Samsara.
This is a utter wrong view!
Buddha very clearly rejected this.
then what happens when monk multiply into many bodies?
non-agitation is highest peace
living unaffected by other cause and condition to suffering is true bliss
not associating with stupid people is immediate peace
- CL (confused layman)

Caodemarte
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by Caodemarte » Sun Jul 28, 2019 12:33 am

confusedlayman wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:46 pm
...then what happens when monk multiply into many bodies?
No single being to multiply.

SarathW
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by SarathW » Sun Jul 28, 2019 1:53 am

The thought “I” is a mental construct and conventional usage which we take as real.
Say I identify myself as a Sri Lankan. If I get the citizenship of USA I will identify my self with USA.
I can expand or contact myself as I wish.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

form
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by form » Sun Jul 28, 2019 2:22 am

I have asked the same question here before, that was quite some time ago. The convincing reply was one to one.

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Volo
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by Volo » Sun Jul 28, 2019 3:38 am

I think even in Tibetan Buddhism such multiple reincarnations (i.e. one to two or two to one) are restricted only to enlightened beings or high level bodhisatvas. Ordinary samsaric being there are reborn one to one.

SarathW
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by SarathW » Sun Jul 28, 2019 7:40 am

confusedlayman wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:46 pm
SarathW wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:31 pm
justindesilva wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:42 pm


According to paticca samuppada it is not possible. The 12 nidanas is restricted to the conditioning of a single being travelling through
Samsara.
This is a utter wrong view!
Buddha very clearly rejected this.
then what happens when monk multiply into many bodies?
You can see the same news in many different TV’s.
The consciousness of all Arahants the same but they have different bodies.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

justindesilva
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2016 12:38 pm

Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by justindesilva » Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:58 am

confusedlayman wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:46 pm
SarathW wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:31 pm
justindesilva wrote:
Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:42 pm


According to paticca samuppada it is not possible. The 12 nidanas is restricted to the conditioning of a single being travelling through
Samsara.
This is a utter wrong view!
Buddha very clearly rejected this.
then what happens when monk multiply into many bodies?
Paticca samuppada by itself and the 12 nidanas are all impermanence. It really is that a being in samsara is subjected to an occurence in a cosmic reaction and the past never reoccurs and each momentous reaction will never re- occur. But the present has been conditioned by the past reactions. Each 12 nidanas continue in cycles but is mainly condutioned by either ignorance or level of pragna. Therefore paticca samuppada or DO cannot take place in two beings at the same time. Two beings can not exist simultaneously.

Caodemarte
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Re: Can one be reborn into several beings at the same time?

Post by Caodemarte » Sun Jul 28, 2019 6:40 pm

Volo wrote:
Sun Jul 28, 2019 3:38 am
I think even in Tibetan Buddhism such multiple reincarnations (i.e. one to two or two to one) are restricted only to enlightened beings or high level bodhisatvas. Ordinary samsaric being there are reborn one to one.
No, this is not correct. There are many cases of recognized “re-becoming” in multiple forms at the same time of those who no one claimed was enlightened or even non-criminal. Recognition of a new “reincarnation” can also occur while the earlier “reincarnation” is still alive. Theoretically the Dalai Lama could claim that someone else now living is a “reincarnation” and should replace him when he dies. Of course, there is no birth or re-birth of any non-existent self in any form at all in Buddhism, but I assume you know that and are talking in conventional shorthand as I am).

If you really want to confuse yourself try to understand the new Chinese law that only the Chinese Communist Party is responsible for reincarnation and that anyone who reincarnates without its prior permission will be punished!

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