the great rebirth debate

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Aloka
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Aloka » Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:17 am

Is this thread part of "the great rebirth debate" ... or a separate one? I'm confused.

.

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mikenz66
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by mikenz66 » Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:41 am

Hi Aloka,

It has been assimilated (merged)...

:anjali:
Mike

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Aloka
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Aloka » Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:58 am

Oh thanks Mike ! Now at last I can indulge in the urge to show off my ''intellectual grasp" !

.............. :rolleye:

meindzai
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by meindzai » Tue Mar 22, 2011 12:55 pm

This may sound backwards, kind of like "If you believe it then you'll see it." But for me the way to "verify" rebirth was to essentially adopt the view of rebirth first, to "try it on for size," if you will, and then watch how the perception of my life was altered as a result. The result was for me, a positive one including more equanimity towards "what happens" as well as more responsibility for what I do now. "What happens" is essentially vipaka - the results of prior actions. Rather than say "why is this happening to me," or "what did I do to deserve this," or "This isn't fair" I can simply (ok not so simply) recognize that it is some sort of vipaka. Not that it's always easy or that I'm a paragon of equanimity or anything.

I haven't verified rebirth in the sense of seeing past lives directly, but I've verified that taking the view of rebirth is an effective life strategy. Having adopted it for a number of years I can't really see how to practice the eightfold path without it.

Anyway, if you want to verify it, just try it on for size for a day or week or so and see what happens. If things don't make more sense to you after that then there's no commitment.

-M

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clw_uk
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:07 am

Ah is this thread still going lol :rofl:
Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

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clw_uk
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Re: Do all braches of Buddhism believe in reincarnation?

Post by clw_uk » Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:18 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Why do people always get reborn into these arguments again and again? Yes he did teach multiple lifetimes, no he didn't.

When a new Buddhist asks a question, they don't need to be greeted with a long debate about this. It is most unbecoming for Buddhists to behave in this way.

Hello Bhante

I agree that a new person to Dhamma shouldn't be subjected to massive debates about this topic when they ask a question about it, but what is the solution?


If they ask then one person will give a more traditional explanation, then someone like me will give the Buddhadasa teaching on it

Then the other person disagrees and then it always tumbles into another 500 pages of argument
Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

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Alex123
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by Alex123 » Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:54 pm

Jhana4 wrote:When I was in highschool I was so enthusiastic about biology that even though I was a sophomore I was allowed to attend an Anatomy class. The class got a few extra privileges. One day school was dismissed early because of snow. The head of the biology department was a friend of our teacher and a certified hypnotist. He invited the students who had a way home to stay for a hypnosis demonstration. He told us that the human brain is incredibly imaginative, being able to generate complex stories in almost no time. He was able to put one of my classmates into a very deep state of hypnosis. He told the student that he was from the planet Venus, that he was supposed to tell us about his life there and then speak to us in his language (venutian). The student came up with a very detailed account of "his life on venus" and spoke to us in a contrived language that sounded very articulate.

Since then I have been very suspicious of anecdotal accounts of reincarnation or rebirth that were remembered through hypnosis.

Just because a person can hallucinate something (lets say, a cake) it doesn't mean that cake doesn't exist at all. There could be incorrect visions and correct visions.

How do you explain Dr. Ian Stevenson's research? Apparently he documented cases where little children could remember their immedeate past life, which they considered to be theirs, as a certain human, and they could know only what that person in that life could have known...



I do hope that there isn't any rebirth, and thus there would be a quick shortcut to parinibbāna...
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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salmon
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by salmon » Thu Mar 31, 2011 1:33 am

A friend's father passed on about 10 years ago. 3 years later, a child was born in the family. When the child was about 2-3 years old and very ill, my friend's mother took care of him. In his delirious state, the child suddenly called out to his grandmother (my friend's mother) by a pet name that only her long deceased husband would use on her. As the child grew, he could remember details pertaining to my friend's father long before my friend's time.

The child now no longer has any recollections.

Coincidence? Rebirth? We don't know...but it was kind of surreal.

To the topic starter...whatever anyone says will not (and should not) make you decide to accept something or not. If you are diligently practising, the truth will verify itself :)
~ swimming upstream is tough work! ~

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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by alan » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:41 am

meindzai hits the mark as usual.

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Ben
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by Ben » Thu Mar 31, 2011 4:22 am

salmon wrote:A friend's...
Coincidence? Rebirth?
With respect, more like a shaggy dog story.
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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salmon
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by salmon » Thu Mar 31, 2011 4:53 am

Ben wrote:
salmon wrote:A friend's...
Coincidence? Rebirth?
With respect, more like a shaggy dog story.
Sure. As would anyone who is hearing this second, third, fourth or fifth hand might say.
~ swimming upstream is tough work! ~

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Ben
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by Ben » Thu Mar 31, 2011 5:06 am

salmon wrote:
Ben wrote:
salmon wrote:A friend's...
Coincidence? Rebirth?
With respect, more like a shaggy dog story.
Sure. As would anyone who is hearing this second, third, fourth or fifth hand might say.
Indeed. Always good to take with a grain of salt.
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com..

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Annapurna
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by Annapurna » Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:30 am

AndrewRayGorman wrote:I have been curious as to if anyone here has attained the 4th jhana state and been able to verify their past lives? The concept of rebirth is one I have yet to accept, if ever, but otherwise I have accepted most of the rest of the dhamma because I have personally found it to be true.
Would it help you believe it if anybody stated that yes, s-he has reached the 4th Jhana?

If yes, why don't you believe it when the Buddha said it?.

Where is the difference?

After all, we are complete strangers and could be bragging in the web.

edited: fixed quote
Last edited by Annapurna on Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Annapurna
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by Annapurna » Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:48 am

Jhana4 wrote:When I was in highschool I was so enthusiastic about biology that even though I was a sophomore I was allowed to attend an Anatomy class. The class got a few extra privileges. One day school was dismissed early because of snow. The head of the biology department was a friend of our teacher and a certified hypnotist. He invited the students who had a way home to stay for a hypnosis demonstration. He told us that the human brain is incredibly imaginative, being able to generate complex stories in almost no time. He was able to put one of my classmates into a very deep state of hypnosis. He told the student that he was from the planet Venus, that he was supposed to tell us about his life there and then speak to us in his language (venutian). The student came up with a very detailed account of "his life on venus" and spoke to us in a contrived language that sounded very articulate.

Since then I have been very suspicious of anecdotal accounts of reincarnation or rebirth that were remembered through hypnosis.
I think this hypnoticist had an agenda and you fell for it, as he intended you to.

He led you all into the same suspicion and doubt he holds.

The benefit he is gaining from this is, that your doubts are confirming his doubts.

Anybody who's not sure seeks company of likeminded.

The difference between "suggestive hypnosis" as your hypnoticist used it and neutral reincarnation therapy is, that in the latter form, the hypnotized person is not being told he is from Venus or the Horse Nebula and being told the onion he is munching is an apple.

He is asked to relax and to go back into his childhood.

He is asked to remember his birth and the time in the womb.

A suggestive hypnosis is actively manipulating by suggesting, and a reincarnation therapy is passively noting what the person tells after being asked to go back to a particular year.

It would be interesting to know if your hypnoticist wasn't a convinced Christian with an agenda.

Do you see what happened to you?

Of course you do. :anjali:

You are still getting manipulated, now by me.

Now I am sowing doubt, by letting you wonder if the hypnoticist had an agenda against Buddhism.

Tricky stuff, he?

Btw, I can hypnotize cats. Can put them to sleep and wake them up without saying a word, only by holding them and thinking:

Sleep.

Am I bragging--or telling you the truth?

I'm not telling. :smile:

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Annapurna
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Re: Who has verified rebirth personally?

Post by Annapurna » Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:55 am

Lazy_eye wrote:Perhaps a thread on this topic could be opened with a constraint: participants would not be allowed (on the thread) to debate the veracity of any claims being made. It would simply provide a venue for those concerned to tell of their experiences.

I have had no such experiences, but would be interested to hear about those of others. The fact that certain claims can be shown to be fraudulent or the product of hypnotic manipulation doesn't necessarily rule out the possibility of genuine ones.

LE
Hi, Lazy eye,

as far as I know, we already have a rule against meta discussion in the TOS.

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