Saha World, Samsara and science

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Saha World, Samsara and science

Postby zamotcr » Sat Oct 20, 2012 10:11 pm

Does Saha World equates with Samsara?
I mean, this whole physical universe with its 31 planes of existance with all their living beings (intelligent life in other planets and dimensions, including us) are Saha World, or just our Solar System is the Saha World? If we found out that there is life in X planet, they would be part of the Saha World too?

And how do you think about physical laws and theories like evolution, etc align with buddhism?

:namaste:
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Re: Saha World, Samsara and science

Postby Anders » Sat Oct 20, 2012 11:48 pm

zamotcr wrote:Does Saha World equates with Samsara?
I mean, this whole physical universe with its 31 planes of existance with all their living beings (intelligent life in other planets and dimensions, including us) are Saha World, or just our Solar System is the Saha World? If we found out that there is life in X planet, they would be part of the Saha World too?

And how do you think about physical laws and theories like evolution, etc align with buddhism?

:namaste:


The Saha [Endurance] World is simply planet earth.

In broad strokes, lots of scientific theories are fairly harmonious with Buddhism - Buddhist cosmology is not humancentric, earth is just a dustmote among infinite galaxies here too, universes arise and cease after billions of years. The broad lines mesh well there. Obviously, Buddhist cosmology does not stand up to scrutiny under a fine-toothed combed, although that can also be said of scientific theories from 20 years ago. Buddhist estimates for the number of atoms in the universe exceed current scientific estimates by thousands of orders of magnitude.

Buddhism even has a theory of evolution. Though it's maxim is more of a "species evolve and devolve according to their collective karmic virtue" than "survival of the fittest", so that doesn't gel too well with modern science. Actually, Buddhist theory of evolution is a bit more expansive than just evolution, since it is simultaneously a theory of ecology - the environment also responds to all this. For example, in Buddhist cosmology, it is described how in the early stages of this world, ethereal gods populated the world. But they eventually grew too greedy and not only devolved into lesser more corporeal beings themselves, the planetary environment changed as a result of their greed as well.

One might go as far as saying we're seeing something similar today.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Saha World, Samsara and science

Postby zamotcr » Sun Oct 21, 2012 7:40 am

Anders wrote:The Saha [Endurance] World is simply planet earth.


Ok, got that. But, every planet or solar system or universe, are within Samsara right? Within the six realms? If we find out life in other planet, they will be subject to this cycle of birth, sick, death?

Anders wrote:Buddhism even has a theory of evolution. Though it's maxim is more of a "species evolve and devolve according to their collective karmic virtue" than "survival of the fittest", so that doesn't gel too well with modern science. Actually, Buddhist theory of evolution is a bit more expansive than just evolution, since it is simultaneously a theory of ecology - the environment also responds to all this. For example, in Buddhist cosmology, it is described how in the early stages of this world, ethereal gods populated the world. But they eventually grew too greedy and not only devolved into lesser more corporeal beings themselves, the planetary environment changed as a result of their greed as well.

One might go as far as saying we're seeing something similar today.


It's excellent to know that buddhism is not in direct contraposition with evolution, you know? I mean, our cosmology is outdated, but it's still better than creationism :tongue:

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Re: Saha World, Samsara and science

Postby Anders » Sun Oct 21, 2012 9:14 am

zamotcr wrote:
Anders wrote:The Saha [Endurance] World is simply planet earth.


Ok, got that. But, every planet or solar system or universe, are within Samsara right? Within the six realms? If we find out life in other planet, they will be subject to this cycle of birth, sick, death?


Yep.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Saha World, Samsara and science

Postby Rakshasa » Sun Oct 21, 2012 9:35 am

Gotama replies that they make these claims in forgetfulness of the past. The claims have no basis in fact. It is righteousness (dhamma) and not class distinction (vanna) that makes the real difference between man and man{1}. Do we not daily see Brahman women with child and bearing sons just like other folk? How can they then say that they are born of God? And as to their origin, when the evolution of the world began, beings were at first immaterial, feeding on joy, giving light from themselves, passing through the air. There was thick darkness round about them, and neither sun nor moon, nor stars, nor sex, nor measures of time. Then the earth rose in the midst of the waters, beautiful as honey in taste and colour and smell, and the beings, eating thereof, lost their brightness, and then sun and moon and stars appeared, and time began to run. And then also their bodies became more coarse and material, and differences of complexion (vanna) became manifest among them. Then some prided themselves, and despised others, on the ground of their finer complexion. And thereupon the fine-tasting earth ceased to be so.

Then successively fine moss, and sweet creepers, and delicate rice appeared, and each time the beings ate thereof with a similar result. Then differences of sex appeared; and households were formed; and the lazy stored up the rice, instead of gathering it each evening and morning; and the rights of property arose, and were infringed. And when lusts were felt, and thefts committed, the beings, now become men, met together, and chose certain men, differing from the others in no wise except in virtue (dhamma), to restrain the evil doers by blame or fines or banishment. These were the first Kshatriyas. And others they chose to restrain the evil dispositions which led to the evil doing. And these were the first Brahmans, differing from the others in no wise, except only in virtue (dhamma).


http://www.sacred-texts.com/bud/dob/dob-03in.htm
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Re: Saha World, Samsara and science

Postby Rakshasa » Sun Oct 21, 2012 9:36 am

I think the Buddha is describing theory of evolution there.
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