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the great rebirth debate - Page 67 - Dhamma Wheel

the great rebirth debate

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Hanzze
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Hanzze » Sun Oct 10, 2010 4:26 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*


BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Nate sante baram sokham _()_

Sunrise
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Sunrise » Sun Oct 10, 2010 4:41 pm


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tiltbillings
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Oct 10, 2010 5:18 pm


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tiltbillings
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Oct 10, 2010 5:20 pm


5heaps
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby 5heaps » Sun Oct 10, 2010 5:28 pm

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Hanzze
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Hanzze » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:03 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*


BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Nate sante baram sokham _()_

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beeblebrox
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby beeblebrox » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:06 pm

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Hanzze
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Hanzze » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:21 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*


BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Nate sante baram sokham _()_

lojong1
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby lojong1 » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:39 pm


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Laurens
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Laurens » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:43 pm



The Fourth Noble Truth
"There are these two extremes that are not to be indulged in by one who has gone forth. Which two? That which is devoted to sensual pleasure in connection with sensuality: base, domestic, common, ignoble, unprofitable; and that which is devoted to self-affliction: painful, ignoble, unprofitable. Avoiding both of these extremes, the middle way realized by the Tathagata — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding.

"And what is the middle way realized by the Tathagata that — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding? Precisely this Noble Eightfold Path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. This is the middle way realized by the Tathagata that — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding."

The Fourth Noble Truth states that one must follow the Eightfold Path in order to reach awakening. Now, as you will see - if one lacks belief in rebirth, you cannot even fulfil the very fundamentals of Buddhism. Why is this?

Because belief in Kamma is essential for one to posses Right View. 'Mundane right view involves a correct grasp of the law of kamma' [The Noble Eightfold Path - Bhikku Bodhi page 15] can one grasp the law of kamma correctly without believing in rebirth?

The answer is no. Kamma needs rebirth to make sense. Kamma being that our actions bear fruit at some time or another. One lifetime simply doesn't allow this to happen. Forgive for bringing Hitler into the argument, but I hope I shall be forgiven, because I am not likening anyone to him, just merely pointing out an obvious example. Hitler was responsible for the murder of 6 million Jews, and countless more deaths in battle, do you think that Hitler's actions bore fruit in this life? He was not brought to justice, nor even slain by an enemy bullet, but his own bullet, with his own finger on the trigger. Did he really have to bear any kind of proportional negative kammic fruit for his actions? I do not believe that he did. So kamma would have failed. Not all volitional actions reap fruit if confined to one life time.

The same argument can be used in reverse. If we are not subject to rebirth, then we are not born with any kamma, so what kind of negative kamma must all those Jews have accrued within one life time to be able to say that their suffering and deaths at the hands of the Nazis were the result of kammic fruit? What could all those people possibly have done? Kamma does not work as an explanation here, without rebirth [not that it is really an explanation with rebirth, but that's irrelevant for the moment].

To be a Buddhist and follow the Eightfold Path correctly, you must at least entertain the notion of rebirth as a possibility, for if you deny it then you do not have a correct grasp of kamma, and you would be holding of a wrong view (according to the Buddha).
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan

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Aloka
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Aloka » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:50 pm

.


Just got back from hearing Ajahn Sumedho giving Dhamma teachings for 2 hrs.... and amongst many other things he discussed, he also spoke about the 4 Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path,... and guess what ? - rebirth wasn't mentioned even once.


:anjali:
Last edited by Aloka on Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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beeblebrox
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby beeblebrox » Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:03 pm


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Hanzze
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Hanzze » Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:07 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*


BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Nate sante baram sokham _()_

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Alex123
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Alex123 » Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:40 pm

"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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Laurens
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Laurens » Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:47 pm

Ok so I admit I do not know exactly how kamma might work in one lifetime, so please:

Can you posit a single lifetime, workable model of kamma that does not contradict the Buddha's teachings?
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan

Shonin
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Shonin » Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:53 pm

Last edited by Shonin on Mon Oct 11, 2010 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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mikenz66
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Oct 10, 2010 7:58 pm


Shonin
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Postby Shonin » Sun Oct 10, 2010 8:03 pm

A workable model would be that Kamma isn't deterministic. Actions create a probability for a consequence - for ourselves and for others. There is no doubt that actions (kamma) have consequences (fruition of kamma) but we may observe different things about the precise workings of that kamma. The consequences of my actions are not deterministic. They are not fixed and isolated from the rest of the universe the moment I act. Rather, once my actions are 'out' they begin a causal chain of event which is influenced by many factors (mostly out of my control) which result in 'good' or 'bad' consequences for me and for others. That is what I see from observing my life and that of other people. The universe isn't forced to create new lives for that kamma just in order to allow it to come to a pre-determined fruition.

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Alex123
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Alex123 » Sun Oct 10, 2010 8:09 pm

"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..."

Individual
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Re: Can Buddhism exist without the doctrine of reincarnation?

Postby Individual » Sun Oct 10, 2010 8:21 pm

The notion of "literal" and "metaphorical" rebirth is a strange one. Literal and metaphorical are things we apply to stories, not truths. Something either is a fact or it isn't; there aren't literal facts and metaphorical ones.

If you come across a strange theory in biology that you don't understand, you wouldn't think, "Maybe I need to take this theory more literally," or "Maybe it's simply a metaphor." No, you would recognize your ignorance and either give up or try to better understand the theory.
The best things in life aren't things.



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