LauraJ wrote:Riddle me this, why don't you use the three lives theory?
I've only got a few minutes just now so this might be a bit scrappy... I'll highlight some main points that come to mind and we can take up whichever parts interest you.
* The Dhamma is to be known and experienced in the 'here and now' and it does not require the ability to see past lives in order to attain enlightenment
* Consciousness in the suttas is not a stand-alone thing. It's always connected to its object (e.g. eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness) and not the rebirth-linking consciousness you hear about in the post-sutta material
* Likewise, suffering is experienced here-and-now, but when consigned to a future existence, it's observability in accordance with the framework is impossible (unless you do a complicated join-the-dots exercise as per the commentaries)
* As per the Simsapa Sutta, the Buddha taught suffering and its cessation (not transmigration)
* Misinterpretation of the term jati
, which does not mean 'rebirth'. It can mean 'birth', but even the Abhidhamma understands jati to be a 'momentary' thing, rather than a 'lifetime' thing.
Well, that's the few minutes.