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Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching? - Dhamma Wheel

Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
SarathW
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Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby SarathW » Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:10 am

I am doing my meditation this morning and the thought came to my mind, that I am just another human being evolved over time, as suggested by the Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.
Then anther thought came that the Theory of Evolution does not explain why I am so different to other humans.
I have lot of brothers and sisters from the same parents, none of them are same except some physical features.
I think that the Theory of Evolution failed address this issue. :shrug:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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James the Giant
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby James the Giant » Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:16 am

Could you maybe explain a little about why you think evolution would make us the same? I don't get that bit.
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.

SarathW
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby SarathW » Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:15 am

Hi James
Let me clear. I think that there is a vast different in children compare to their parents. Evolution is a long term process and those differences could not be explained only by the theory of evolution. For example take a look at those child prodigies. :idea: :)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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James the Giant
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby James the Giant » Thu Jan 31, 2013 11:37 am

Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.

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Kim OHara
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Jan 31, 2013 11:53 am

Hi, Sarath,
I think you may be misunderstanding what it is that "evolves" or changes. It isn't the person or even the family but the species. At any one time the species contains a wide diversity of individuals.
Let's say deer have a range of coat colours. Over generations, if pale coats are better for hiding from tigers then more pale deer will survive to have children and those children will be more likely to have pale coats too, so eventually the species will mostly have pale coats instead of the original mixture of colours. But the (altered) species will still contain a diversity of individuals. Maybe some are better at digesting thorn trees than others ... and so it goes on.

Does that help at all?

:namaste:
Kim

SarathW
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby SarathW » Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:20 pm

HI James
I do not have any science background. But I have some understanding of what genes and chromosomes are, and what they do. :)

Hi Kim
You are right, I misunderstood what is evolving. Thanks.

So can I say that I am diffrent to other humans due to my previous Kamma?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Kim OHara
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:12 pm


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James the Giant
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby James the Giant » Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:23 pm

Kim, great explanations, you should be a teacher. Wait, you're already a teacher, aren't you? :anjali:
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.

matais
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby matais » Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:03 pm

Regarding the connection of kamma with physical attributes, I'd like to compare this with wealth: a family does not become wealthy because someone within this family becomes pregnant of someone with really good kamma, requiring a fortunate birth. Rather, a family is already wealthy and for this reason, birth in such a family is fortunate. Likewise, a child does not become smart, talented, or beautiful because their kamma requires these fortunes, rather, genetic makeup of any society naturally give rise to children that are smart, talented and beautiful, and being born into such a life is fortunate.

As far as kamma comes into play, it's in selecting one birth among many possibilities. The world is not remade after conception to fit kamma.

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Kim OHara
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby Kim OHara » Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:13 pm


gendun
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby gendun » Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:51 pm

Gendun P. Brownlow.
Karma Kagyu student.

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James the Giant
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby James the Giant » Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:37 pm

Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.

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beeblebrox
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby beeblebrox » Fri Feb 01, 2013 4:44 pm


matais
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby matais » Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:18 pm


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beeblebrox
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby beeblebrox » Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:29 pm


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Benjamin
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby Benjamin » Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:32 am

Children from the same parents aren't identical because they haven't led identical lives.
"Don't believe everything you read."
-The Buddha

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Kim OHara
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby Kim OHara » Sat Feb 02, 2013 3:44 am


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ground
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby ground » Sat Feb 02, 2013 5:44 am


past is dead
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Re: Does the theory of evolution confirm Buddha’s teaching?

Postby past is dead » Sun Feb 10, 2013 11:30 am

Hi SarathW

Here are my two cents. Evolution is a process of change in all forms of life including humans, over successive generations i.e change of the inherited characteristics by means of mutation, genetic drift, natural selection.

On the other side Buddha's teaching is diagnose about the human condition and offers are a cure to overcome that condition.

So according the above Buddhism and Evolution are two different areas. You can be follower of Buddhism and also interested in the theory of evolution at the same time, they don't contradict each other. No matter how much humans are different in terms of their genetic code they all suffer through their lives and can apply Buddha's teaching in order to overcome that suffering.


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