the great rebirth debate

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Wed May 22, 2013 10:23 am

Zakattack wrote:
porpoise wrote:The point is that in dependent origination nama-rupa ( a person ) arises in dependence on consciousness, not the other way round. This contradicts the scientific view.
What exactly is "the person"? The suttas explain:
What, monks, is the burden?
'The five groups of clinging' is the answer. Which five? They are: the group of clinging to corporeality,... to feelings,... to perceptions,... to mental formations,... to consciousness. This, monks, is called 'the burden.'
What is the laying hold of the burden? The answer is that it is 'the person'....
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .wlsh.html
Nama-rupa is mentality-materiality or mind-body - it's equivalent to the 5 aggregates. I think you're overcomplicating things.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Wed May 22, 2013 10:26 am

Zakattack wrote:
porpoise wrote:I'm still struggling to see the relevance, but if you can find a sutta which clearly describes consciousness arising in dependence on form, I'd be interested to see it.
Multiple suttas were previously posted. :roll:
I still haven't seen a sutta quote which clearly describes consciousness arising in dependence on form. :shrug:
Buddha save me from new-agers!

User avatar
Alex123
Posts: 3476
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 11:32 pm

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Alex123 » Wed May 22, 2013 10:42 am

porpoise wrote:I still haven't seen a sutta quote which clearly describes consciousness arising in dependence on form. :shrug:

How about:
Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
"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..."

User avatar
daverupa
Posts: 5980
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:58 pm

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by daverupa » Wed May 22, 2013 10:45 am

porpoise wrote:Nama-rupa is mentality-materiality or mind-body - it's equivalent to the 5 aggregates. I think you're overcomplicating things.
Hmm... since the dependent relation "vinnana-namarupa" obtains, namarupa on its own cannot be the five aggregates because vinnana is left out. You might be able to say that 'nama' was vedana-sanna-sankhara, or in other words that nama is vedana, sanna, and three sorts of sankhara: intention, contact, and attention. But we cannot accurately say that namarupa = five aggregates.
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

5heaps
Posts: 334
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:19 am

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by 5heaps » Wed May 22, 2013 2:36 pm

Zakattack wrote:
5heaps wrote:since the mind is a primary factor of existence just as energy is

there is great energy in the sun. energy is the primary factor of the sun's existence, just as energy is a primary factor in a nuclear explosion or mechanical engine combustion. mind is not a primary factor in the existence of these things
being primary does not necessitate that it need comprise the sun. the sun is a physical thing. all your other responses are of a similar fashion: strawman argument against my assertions.
what the mind being primary means is that minds existed alongside energy at the time of the production of the universe. this need not imply that a mind pervades the sun, though most tenet schools do indeed assert that there is no object in the universe that is not known, even down to the last atom in the middle of a distant piece of rock. such sorts of minds sound fantastical to a materialist, but then even a thorough explanation of shamata and especially jhana sounds fantastical to a person who has not developed their mental qualities, and who has only ever studied in a lineage that doesnt have the slightest clue how to begin training their mental qualities.
when the physical body of a human being is old & decaying, is there evidence the former mental tendencies (kammas) remain? for example, does an old man, with frail physical body, on his death bed, have a mind that still has the same sexual drive of his youth? does a small child, before the physical & hormonal changes of puberty, have the sexual drives as a teenager (and the associated emotions of vanity, frustration, anger, etc)?
no. again, a strawman argument, since i did not say that kammas are unchanging and permanent and that we should expect that they should last a full lifetime let alone 5 minutes. also there is a difference between kammic seeds, kammas, mental habits, and mental factors. akk mental habits associated with for example a human mind end during the death process of that human. what cannot end, namely that which is produced as the first moment of a new life by the previous moment prior to death, is a neutral type of subtle mental consciousness from which later all other parts of the person are steadily produced. kammic seeds exist as mental factors on this momentary mental continuum, which grow when the appropriate causes and conditions are met. at that point, not even god can stop the production of the effect of the kammic seed, since it is cause and effect.
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."

Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Thu May 23, 2013 8:20 am

daverupa wrote: But we cannot accurately say that namarupa = five aggregates.
Yes, you're right, nama-rupa doesn't include consciousness. Which makes sense because in dependent origination nama-rupa arises in dependence on consciousness.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Thu May 23, 2013 8:22 am

Alex123 wrote:
porpoise wrote:I still haven't seen a sutta quote which clearly describes consciousness arising in dependence on form. :shrug:

How about:
Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
Yes, well spotted. So now we have consciousness arising in dependence on form, consciousness and form being mutually dependent, and form ( in nama-rupa ) arising in dependence on consciousness. :juggling: ;)
Buddha save me from new-agers!

5heaps
Posts: 334
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:19 am

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by 5heaps » Thu May 23, 2013 9:35 am

porpoise wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
porpoise wrote:I still haven't seen a sutta quote which clearly describes consciousness arising in dependence on form. :shrug:

How about:
Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
Yes, well spotted. So now we have consciousness arising in dependence on form, consciousness and form being mutually dependent, and form ( in nama-rupa ) arising in dependence on consciousness. :juggling: ;)
sigh. as everyone has clearly explained for the past 2500 years, what that quote means is that the sense powers condition the arising of their respective consciousness. the actual cause, the actual material cause, is a previous moment of mind. sense powers do not act as material causes ie. prime causes for the mind, they just condition how the present moment of mind is produced by the previous moment of mind, which is the main, actual, and material cause.
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."

Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Thu May 23, 2013 12:49 pm

5heaps wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
sigh. as everyone has clearly explained for the past 2500 years, what that quote means is that the sense powers condition the arising of their respective consciousness. the actual cause, the actual material cause, is a previous moment of mind. sense powers do not act as material causes ie. prime causes for the mind, they just condition how the present moment of mind is produced by the previous moment of mind, which is the main, actual, and material cause.
I think we're looking at different contexts here. Contact ( phasso ) is functionally the meeting of eye, form and eye-consciousness. But in dependent origination contact is described in structural terms: contact arises in dependence on the 6 bases ( salyatanam ) which in turn arise in dependence on mind-body ( nama-rupa ).
Buddha save me from new-agers!

5heaps
Posts: 334
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:19 am

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by 5heaps » Thu May 23, 2013 2:09 pm

porpoise wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
I think we're looking at different contexts here. Contact ( phasso ) is functionally the meeting of eye, form and eye-consciousness. But in dependent origination contact is described in structural terms: contact arises in dependence on the 6 bases ( salyatanam ) which in turn arise in dependence on mind-body ( nama-rupa ).
why are you bringing up contact in DO? DO is just an explanation of what things depend on other things, and what things are not possible unless other things are there for them to depend on. DO does not contain all the variables and that is not its job.

the point im arguing agsinst is the idea that the quote given establishes their argument: that consciousness is produced FROM form. form never produces consciousness. the capacity of production is due only to the material cause as i explained, namely a previous moment of mind. similarly the capacity of production for a clay cup is clay, the person who conditions it acts just as a condition and not a main/material cause. things like sense powers and objects and contact and feeling merely condition their respective consciousness. the main cause/material cause is a previous moment of mind. thats all i mean
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."

chownah
Posts: 7412
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by chownah » Thu May 23, 2013 2:44 pm

Alex123 wrote:
porpoise wrote:I still haven't seen a sutta quote which clearly describes consciousness arising in dependence on form. :shrug:

How about:
Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
If I understand you correctly, you are saying that since consciousness at the eye arises dependent on the eye and FORMS that this is an instance of consciousness arising in dependence on FORM. I think that FORM has two different meanings. FORM can be the object which stimulates the eye and in modern terms it is usually taken to be light and then one could paraphrase, "Dependent on the eye and light there arises consciousness at the eye." FORM can also be taken to mean materiality like in Nama rupa. At least that is how I understand FORM as having two meanings. I believe that porpoise is using FORM in the Nama rupa sense while you are replying with FORM in the light sense.....I guess......
chownah

Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Fri May 24, 2013 10:27 am

5heaps wrote:
porpoise wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Dependent on the eye & forms there arises consciousness at the eye. Dependent on the ear & sounds there arises consciousness at the ear. Dependent on the nose & aromas there arises consciousness at the nose. Dependent on the tongue & flavors there arises consciousness at the tongue. Dependent on the body & tactile sensations there arises consciousness at the body. MN148
I think we're looking at different contexts here. Contact ( phasso ) is functionally the meeting of eye, form and eye-consciousness. But in dependent origination contact is described in structural terms: contact arises in dependence on the 6 bases ( salyatanam ) which in turn arise in dependence on mind-body ( nama-rupa ).
why are you bringing up contact in DO? DO is just an explanation of what things depend on other things, and what things are not possible unless other things are there for them to depend on. DO does not contain all the variables and that is not its job.
I think the original question was about the relationship between brain and consciousness.
What I'm saying is that Alex's quote describes functionally how specific instances of consciousness arise, whereas DO describes structurally what needs to be in place for that to happen, ie the 6 bases which depend on nama-rupa.
But DO also describes how nama-rupa arises in dependence on consciousness ( more accurately the process of consciousness ), the earlier quote I gave from DN15 seems quite specific about this.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

User avatar
clw_uk
Posts: 4718
Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2009 2:36 am

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:34 am

Is this still going lol

:jumping:
Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

User avatar
clw_uk
Posts: 4718
Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2009 2:36 am

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:53 am

Ben wrote:
Aloka wrote:
Alex123 wrote: I want to believe in rebirth. How can one argue for it?
What's the point in arguing ? We all go round and round in circles in these threads, sometimes giving dodgy ''evidence'', sometimes plunging into this or that form of intellectual proliferation, and nobody seems much wiser on the subject.

I recall Ajahn Sumedho saying in a talk at Amaravati Monastery: "What's reality ? Any opinion about reality is not reality, its an opinion"

So for me its better to just relax, meditate, and focus on practising Dhamma in the here and now.

The Buddha said :
the Dhamma is visible in the here-&-now, timeless, inviting verification, pertinent, to be realized by the wise for themselves."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

:)
Thank you, Aloka, for one of the most sensible and pertinent posts on this thread.


I second that :clap: :namaste:



In my opinion the "great rebirth debate" is nothing more that a great distraction debate

Buddha tailored his teachings to his audience. To some he taught rebirth, to others he didnt. At the end of the day all that matter is the practice of the noble eightfold path, the full understanding of the four noble truths and the removal of ignorance.

Some of us use the teaching of rebirth, some of us don't but we are all still Buddhists :)

Regardless of how if we have a view of rebirth or not we still practice what the Buddha taught and he ultimately taught that his teachings are only a raft, not an end in itself
"I shall show you, monks, the Teaching's similitude to a raft: as having the purpose of crossing over, not the purpose of being clung to. Listen, monks, and heed well what I shall say" — "Yes, Lord," replied the monks. and the Blessed One spoke thus:

"Suppose, monks, there is a man journeying on a road and he sees a vast expanse of water of which this shore is perilous and fearful, while the other shore is safe and free from danger. But there is no boat for crossing nor is there a bridge for going over from this side to the other. So the man thinks: 'This is a vast expanse of water; and this shore is perilous and fearful, but the other shore is safe and free from danger. There is, however, no boat here for crossing, nor a bridge for going over from this side to the other. Suppose I gather reeds, sticks, branches and foliage, and bind them into a raft.' Now that man collects reeds, sticks, branches and foliage, and binds them into a raft. Carried by that raft, laboring with hands and feet, he safely crosses over to the other shore. Having crossed and arrived at the other shore, he thinks: 'This raft, indeed, has been very helpful to me. Carried by it, laboring with hands and feet, I got safely across to the other shore. Should I not lift this raft on my head or put it on my shoulders, and go where I like?'

"What do you think about it, O monks? Will this man by acting thus, do what should be done with a raft?" — "No, Lord" — "How then, monks, would he be doing what ought to be done with a raft? Here, monks, having got across and arrived at the other shore, the man thinks: 'This raft, indeed, has been very helpful to me. Carried by it, and laboring with hands and feet, I got safely across to the other shore. Should I not pull it up now to the dry land or let it float in the water, and then go as I please?' By acting thus, monks, would that man do what should be done with a raft.

"In the same way, monks, have I shown to you the Teaching's similitude to a raft: as having the purpose of crossing over, not the purpose of being clung to.

14. "You, O monks, who understand the Teaching's similitude to a raft, you should let go even (good) teachings,[14] how much more false ones!

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el048.html
Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

Dinsdale
Posts: 5859
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Andromeda looks nice

Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Dinsdale » Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:22 am

clw_uk wrote: Some of us use the teaching of rebirth, some of us don't but we are all still Buddhists :)
Of course. What I don't get is the need some people have to marginalise these teachings, the need to prove they're irrelevant / misunderstood / later additions etc. I don't get the need to promote a very particular version of the Dhamma, even to the extent of setting up new forums to do so.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 84 guests