Discussion in 'Buddhism' started by IowaGuy, Jul 24, 2011.
And you are of course welcome to that view, donnann.
Rebirth can be a state of mind that is changed or an actual change with your whole body into a higher state. Incarnation is a heavenly being that never had a human body obtaining one for some heavenly reason. Reincarnation is coming back into the human community and obtaining a body.
I am not fond of reincarnation at all because of the whole memory gone thing... but if I were to reincarnate again I'd reincarnate as an animal. lol Rather than than a human. As long as there's no suffering bad life. Dog, bird, AVATAR!
Hi, Eternalsoul, I sent you a message.
EternalSoul - you say you're not fond of reincarnation because of a concept you dislike (loss of memory). Why do you think your liking or disliking of a component of reincarnation would impact the possibility that it exists or does not exist?
For example, IMHO, heaven exists as a concept in many different historical religions because most people like the idea of a blissful afterlife. This in and of itself does not make heaven any more/less likely to exist. Similarly, many people don't like the idea of reincarnation into other life forms (animals, etc). However, this in and of itself does not make reincarnation any more/less likely in my opinion.
As a side note, why do you feel such an attachment to your memories? Do you feel that memories allow you to focus more in the present moment, or less in the present moment?
Didn't say it doesn't exist, I just hate the idea and hope it doesn't lol. I'm more inclined to think nothing really happens and I've accepted that recently and think it sounds more peaceful. I also don't really believe in the hindu/buddhist religion of what happens after death although my family comes from Budhdist/Catholic religion. I don't believe in many religions. I'm agnostic, but I just hope to be in a happy place with loved ones is all that matters if such a place exists.
My memories are important to me because I like being me, I am who I am. I love my famiy and friends and the memories they gave me, they are my most cherished moments. If a family member has Alzheimer *knock on wood* it'd break my heart to see them not remember any of us. I don't think it disables me. I like making new memories and enjoy looking back, walking down memory lane with my loved ones, recalling our funny stories.
My guess is you now have a different take on the whole thing? Last I read seemed like you didn't buy into it.
Buy into the "Peterman Catalogue" of beautiful idylic etchings of fantasias & musings? To sell a commodity?
Re-incarnation is about the future. A future based upon one's Worth; based upon the cultivation of education and moral guidance and decisive intelligence ---in contradistinction with slovenly beastlt depravity and gross ignorance . . . aka, "KARMA".
Re-incarnation is about "KARMA" as ascribed along with your soul's address.
The fruits of your work accrue a ticket to ride the lifespan of any living entity desirable and un-desirable ---again depending on the level of sophistication of life & living that was afforded via the attendence to work hard aka, to consciously preform one's own individual "Occupational **Obliged Duties" [**aka, 'Dharma'].
So if you are a good dog you will become a good master ---and vis versa: a bad master ---later begets a bad life under a bad master.
The soul is Transcendent ---but, at present, WE ARE SPIRIT SOULS IN THE MATERIAL WORLD.
We souls are ENJOYING in the Material World!
Learn the rules of the Material World so as to enjoy ---such enjoyments are always preceeded by pain, effort, training, austerity followed by "GAIN".
BUT, the "Taller they are, the Harder they fall" ---attests to how Karma is earned and lost here in THE MATERIAL WORLD.
Every life form in creation is there to afford a different position to enjoy THE MATERIAL WORLD.
We enjoy via "sense stimulation". We live for it. We Plan for it. We fantisize it, we advertise it.
All creatures luxuriate in it ---especially when the weather is just right.
The older I get the less I worry about the afterlife and the more I try to focus on living a quality life in the present moment. I'm personally agnostic regarding the existence of an afterlife.
exactly the opposite of many....to me this proves a comfort level in where you are
Although I'm not a Buddhist I believe in reincarnation/rebirth in a sense. I cannot imagine how the energy that fosters my life as an individual could disappear. To me, we somehow continue living on. It makes sense to me that the energy that gives us life is simply transferred somehow. Perhaps a rebirth into a new body is what happens after our current bodies give out. Who knows?
Our bodies seem to be vessels containing life energy. It's logical to me that when our bodies wear down that the energy that gives our bodies life doesn't cease to exist, but is rather transferred to somewhere/something else.
Likewise, it seems logical to me to view life in terms of oneness. All life derives from one source, which would connect us all. We are one, so what we do to others, we in effect do to ourselves. I think the karmic wheel extends far beyond just one lifetime. Then again, I view life as ongoing, so a lifetime would amount to a single chapter in an endless book. A book we write together as living creatures.
Like you, I don't concern myself with the afterlife so much anymore. I focus on today, knowing and understanding that my actions will affect life on this planet for years to come. To me, my actions will determine the quality of life I experience not just today, but tomorrow also.
Again, life as I understand it is ongoing, so when I say tomorrow I mean ongoing chapters of life entailing countless lifetimes. I believe life is an eternal thing. Maybe life as we know it today derived from the big bang, but the energy that fosters our life today (according to my belief) has always been, and is perhaps forever expanding.
Good questions, btw.
I personally believe in Rebirth, but I do not think that one's karma acts as a "cosmic decider" of what people will become.
I view Karma in a naturalistic sense (cause and effect) and I think that when the consciousnesses transfers, it simply takes the form of something by chance. Much like how, by chance, I was born male or that I was born in the southern United States.
a] Karma is NOT a "cosmic decider"? Karma does NOT trump "Chance"? ---this contradicts the basic and the complicated definitions of Karma entirely.
b] What does the authentic Buddhist writtings teach happens?
c] Shall you re-define Karma ---for future generations to know?
Karma is NOT pre-destiny.
Karma is Work + Reward or Punishment for Works.
One must do Good Works and Avoid Bad Works.
Liberation is to master the Workings of Karma ---so as to transcend it's influence.
BTW, "Brahman" is Superior to all Matter & Energy ---"Brahman" is NOT Formless.
"Brahman" is above and beyond all Matter & Energy (aka Maya-prakriti).
One of the things that studies have shown - serious studies involving regressionists who have observed *patterns* through their many years of work and hundreds, or thousands of cases - is that when a subject begins to describe the earlier whereabouts of its prior incarnations, there is also an awareness of the present lifetime.
It becomes clear that in fact, we are much, much more aware in these hypnotized states - of our own present, as well as our own past - than most of us have even vaguely begun to speculate, or fathom.
Then it will occur that the subject of regression is not always completely kind, or pleasant, in referring to its own currently-incarnate state, or even some of our prior incarnations. It starts to dawn that in fact, there are many levels of awareness, in a sort of cascade of subject, with objective viewer, who then becomes the subject of a more objective, less judgmental form of our Awareness.
This is not, however, an infinite regress (as we might speculate, should we be clever yet approaching this as purely guesswork). If and when enough layers (often at least 2 or 3) of Consciousness are peeled back, there may finally emerge an expression of what esotericists call `the Soul,' although this kind of a relationship between hypnotist and subject is rare, amounting more to the sacred bonds of spiritual kinship than that of paid professional and patient/client.
Nevertheless, once certain barriers begin to disappear, and once certain Recognitions have begun to dawn, we can no longer mistake the confirmation of many things, including the survival of the human being of death, and the existence of an extensive afterlife Journey often lasting many decades, certainly involving as much spiritual growth as we have undergone here within the body - plus the very and literal *changing* of the astral world itself, in which we find ourselves (owing less to any exterior, objective alteration and being almost entirely due to the literal transformation of our being in this afterlife condition, including the revelation of much which we either refused to listen to and learn while incarnate, or were unable to process and accept - for various reasons).
Thus Spiritualism helped prove things in a sound, logical and scientific manner - for those who have been unbiased and impartial in their investigations - which some of us even 100 years ago could be born into the world knowing. That is, as surely as most of us can accept the revolution of the Earth around the Sun, so another segment of the population is able to accept the periodical Revolution of the human persona around the Soul. The parallel is exact. And this means that death is as understood, by some of us, as your morning routine of buttered toast and jam. Or whatever you happen to like to eat for breakfast, if at all.
Thus we neither fear death, nor evade it, though most of us who believe we are here to serve a Purpose would also prefer not to hasten it, or welcome it ~ before our time. Exceptions usually involve those who have lost hope, given in to their materialistic nightmares and in some cases indoctrination ... or otherwise who simply believe that surely, in no wise, could any other experience be as hellish as what they are currently going through ~ whatever this happens to be.
Thus the unfortunate suicide, who discovers that in fact, s/he was actually mistaken about this last bit ... although in so many cases it is understandable why an escape was sought, and certainly, there is much comfort and assistance given.
But as for reincarnation, there are simply the holdouts, who for whatever reason cannot yet accept the inevitable ... and then there is the Earth, revolving around the Sun ~ which, last time checked, remained: Sol Invictus.
Thus is the Soul, or SOL [being phonemes, and not by accident, as in this case I do wish folks could learn the Son-Sun-God-Soul relationship] at our very heart, as it IS our Heart, our Core and the one, necessary Link, Bridge or Gateway between our consciousness IN the flesh, and our Awareness AS the Spark within ~ to whatever degree our outer awareness is capable of presently expressing this Spark in its effulgence.
But the Baha'i's usually say it better, and more beautifully, besides.
It just seems absurd that there are those cannot yet see the wisdom of the following:
When you want to understand death, ask someone who has experienced it, even again, again, and again ... and LIVED to tell about it.
If you want to understand the afterlife conditions, ask someone who is THERE, currently. If you wish to get a second opinion, do so, as it will vary from the first, regardless.
As you consult with more and more subjects, including some who are very knowledgeable and provide evidence that you are able to verify, begin to discover patterns, and common characteristics regarding their experience(s) ... and assemble these into a kind of guidebook, or Atlas. And indeed, these have been around for hundreds of years, giving increasingly reliable and verifiable information. Then again, the tried and true testimony of those who have mastered and transcended every Trial upon the Way are also available, and we see with what warm reception these have been greeted. Is it any wonder the world still spits on its Messiahs, stones them for blasphemy or nails them to a tree, when too much is at stake?
So if you want to UNDERSTAND Reincarnation, you should ASK those who have been reincarnated ~ and managed to somehow recollect some, or e'en large portions of the experience ... since it is every single one of us that has lived many hundreds, and probably thousands, of times before, yet remembers it not. Certainly there will exceptions, rare cases, and a study of *abnormal circumstances* in this venture, as in all else - especially when we deal with human psychology, the workings of the PSYCHE (not brain, mind you, but PSYCHE). But let's at least focus on what is COMMONPLACE, ROUTINE and the NORM ... before we venture too far into no-man's land, and need to begin account for non-Earth-originating Souls [visitors, some of whom do incarnate], or Tulkus, or Avatars.
Oh, but no, tell us of JESUS, and how it most wonderfully ALLLLLLL fits together, for most certainly, verily, it DOES.
Read it for yourself, I would immediately say to such. For you will hear NONE of it, when it doesn't originate in the dear Srimad Bhagavatan, or appear in nice red print between the pages of Matthew and Revelation, as I am accustomed to hear bellowed at me every Sunday, or spoken low, in hushed tones, as if Truth were something to be ashamed of.
No, what a curious creature, indeed, is Man, who would stare in the mirror, then cringe when his eye begins to penetrate what his mind would rather not see. Bloody Mary indeed ... and her Children, some grown quite cross-eyed, looking only at the space immediately before them ~ or worse, for whatever strange reason, at their own, fuzzy navel.
Time for another glass of juice.
Just so there are no personal, private, organizational, denominational, political and obviously, religious and ideological AGENDAS to be hammered out, most pitfalls can be avoided ... if we wish to be scientific, reasonable and even-minded (as well as open-minded) about our approach. Comparative studies can most certainly help, but I say, begin with what is written by those who had NO religious or spiritual affiliation (as Robert Monroe of the Monroe Institute, who wrote Journeys Out of the Body and other, subsequent volumes ... also Ian Stevenson, whose Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation examines the phenomenon from the perspective of the `soft science' of psychiatry ~ again applying the same rigors of science which the religionist and cunning sophist will dismiss with wave (or sleight) of hand, where convenient).
Graduate, if you begin to find Objectivity ~ which will lead you to Truth.
Press forward, once you understand that Truth wants to be KNOWN.
The idea of reincarnation in hinduism is a social device to make people act according to social rules (if one does, then heaven and a better-placed birth, otherwise hell). Buddha had a different take, the moment-to-moment reincarnation. He advised people to think about their present condition rather than the next birth.
Any attachment is considered unworthy for a knowledgeable person in hinduism or buddhism. There is no 'I' or 'memories' after death, so why worry about it? (BTW, I am an atheist 'advaitist' hindu. 'Advaita' being about oneness)
Sure, the energy that constitutes you would never be destroyed. That is tar-material, perhaps arose with the birth of universe and will be destroyed only when the universe is dead. After death, the energy is released in the environment and would be absorbed up by a million things, earth, vegetation, animals and even humans. Perhaps a part of you would be in a rose. The cycle goes on.
Is not the standard of measurement of a representative of Spiritual Matters from a Hindu POV ---to quote the Authoritative scriptural injunctions?
IOW, shouldn't you begin replying by quoiting Krishna's words in the Gita? ---inre: "Reincarnation of the Soul"
To do otherwise, by self-inventing spiritual insights as if it is an authoritative scriptural injunction is the pastimes of Cult leaders. No?
Let's see, if I can recollect my own prior incarnations, who becomes the `expert' ... ?
Sorry for missing 's' in my quoted post. Not all hindu philosophies take 'shabda' as a valid pramana. It is OK to have differences of opinions (matantaras), there are six or seven in Vedanta itself. Even Krishna asks you to go beyond the Vedas and transcend dualities.
"Trai-guṇya-viṣayā vedā, nistrai-guṇyo bhavārjuna;
nirdvandvo nitya-sattva-stho, niryoga-kṣema ātmavān." BG 2.45
(The Vedas deal with the subject of the three modes of material nature. O Arjuna, become transcendental to these three modes. Be free from all dualities and free from ideas of gain and protection, and be established in the self.)
I'm not a Buddhist or a Christian but I believe in reincarnation. I believe that when Jesus was talking about Heaven and Hell, he meant it as a metaphor for the state of concsiousness that people are in. Enlightened people are in heaven while they are on earth and a lot of people who are considered to be unconscious are in hell because that's what they are experiencing now. I do not think heaven or hell are actual places. I'm pretty sure it's a metaphor.
The happiest are the fools, as they say. Being unconscious, i.e., not being aware of the secrets of life and universe, is not a crime. It is not a sin. A sin is when you harm some one. Otherwise, even the unenlightened persons should be eligible for heaven. After all, the level of their intelligence was given by God. It will be unfair to put a person who has not harmed anyone in hell and God is supposed to be just.
At what point do you think you will stop reincarnating?
Separate names with a comma.