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Author Topic: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?  (Read 3885 times)

Middleway

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #50 on: August 07, 2016, 03:52:10 PM »
We can use a similarity with the body.
The body does exist, but in dependance with concomitant factors. We know this, and even we see this and represent this intellectually with ease.
Buddha only denies the belief that the body would exist by itself. He does not produce a new concept here but denies the view that the body does exist by itself  (eternalist view) and the view that the body doesn't really exist (nihilist view).
What he says is not that you have to understand what anatta is, but to eradicate views of atta (or rather attachment and belief in those views) from your mind.
It can be intellectually apprehended this way.
Views, opinions and ideas are empty, void, vacuum, sunyata.
They have to be abandoned.

This is very insightful. Let us go into it a bit further. Buddha says eradicate the views of atta, i.e all things are compound or conditioned phenomena.  They all dependently arise. When you say views, opinions and ideas are empty, you have to ask they are empty of what? They are empty of self because they dependently arise. So, emptiness, void, vacuum or sunyata... do they even exist? or just words to describe annatta nature of things?

Some say nibbana is not conditioned. If nibbana is not conditioned, then it must be eternal. Is nibbana eternal? or is it just another word to describe anatta nature of things? If that is the case, does nibbana exist? Are we all chasing something non-existent?
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Laurent

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #51 on: August 07, 2016, 05:01:45 PM »
We can use a similarity with the body.
The body does exist, but in dependance with concomitant factors. We know this, and even we see this and represent this intellectually with ease.
Buddha only denies the belief that the body would exist by itself. He does not produce a new concept here but denies the view that the body does exist by itself  (eternalist view) and the view that the body doesn't really exist (nihilist view).
What he says is not that you have to understand what anatta is, but to eradicate views of atta (or rather attachment and belief in those views) from your mind.
It can be intellectually apprehended this way.
Views, opinions and ideas are empty, void, vacuum, sunyata.
They have to be abandoned.

This is very insightful. Let us go into it a bit further. Buddha says eradicate the views of atta, i.e all things are compound or conditioned phenomena.  They all dependently arise. When you say views, opinions and ideas are empty, you have to ask they are empty of what? They are empty of self because they dependently arise. So, emptiness, void, vacuum or sunyata... do they even exist? or just words to describe annatta nature of things?

Some say nibbana is not conditioned. If nibbana is not conditioned, then it must be eternal. Is nibbana eternal? or is it just another word to describe anatta nature of things? If that is the case, does nibbana exist? Are we all chasing something non-existent?

I think we are chasing something non-existant, yes. You reach nibbana when you just stop to.
Humans want to stabilize ideas, get responses, develop theories, being compatible with their current views, until they understand that those views (i.e. attachment to them) are the source of their suffering.
Buddha cures suffering, he doesn't reveal mysteries of the universe.

EDIT:
I would like to clarify that I LOVE science, this is very interesting and useful.
I am a big consumer of  scientific talk.
I also like parallel between dhamma and science. It is also very interesting and maybe useful.
But we, disciples of Buddha, should understand that any representation of reality is not reality itself.
We can consider them with equanimity, but not to tie us with.

As said:

"Monks, if you were to adhere to this view — so pure, so bright — if you were to cherish it, treasure it, regard it as 'mine,' would you understand the Dhamma taught as analogous to a raft,[4] for crossing over, not for holding on to?"

"No, lord."

"If you were not to adhere to this view — so pure, so bright — if you were to not to cherish it, not to treasure it, not to regard it as 'mine,' would you understand the Dhamma taught as analogous to a raft, for crossing over, not for holding on to?"

"Yes, lord."
« Last Edit: August 07, 2016, 05:26:45 PM by Laurent »
Ideologies are either a mistake or a hoax!

Middleway

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #52 on: August 07, 2016, 05:22:12 PM »
You cannot say for sure nibbana does not exist. That is the mystery. Mysteries of the universe are unknown and cannot be known. Buddha remains silent on these subjects for a good reason.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Laurent

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #53 on: August 07, 2016, 05:29:35 PM »
You cannot say for sure nibbana does not exist. That is the mystery. Mysteries of the universe are unknown and cannot be known. Buddha remains silent on these subjects for a good reason.

I did not say that nibbana does not exist  :D
To be more clear, we are chasing an idea, the idea of nibbana, not nibbana.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2016, 05:34:12 PM by Laurent »
Ideologies are either a mistake or a hoax!

Middleway

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #54 on: August 07, 2016, 05:38:29 PM »
Fair enough.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

TheJourney

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #55 on: August 08, 2016, 04:41:42 AM »
There are only 4 ultimate reality - rupa, cotta, cetasika, nibbana.

Matthew

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #56 on: August 08, 2016, 05:57:01 AM »
I did not say that nibbana does not exist  :D
To be more clear, we are chasing an idea, the idea of nibbana, not nibbana.

Anything being "chased" has desire behind it, desire has ideation behind it. Forget the ideas, cut the desire and nibbana comes closer. ;)
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Middleway

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #57 on: August 08, 2016, 01:58:08 PM »
There are only 4 ultimate reality - rupa, cotta, cetasika, nibbana.

You probably mean citta and not cotta. The word ultimate before the word reality has a connotation to it that this so called reality is permanent or eternal. In Hinduism, there is another word "absolute" is used with similar connotation.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

TheJourney

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #58 on: August 08, 2016, 04:35:42 PM »
You are right. I typed citta but Samsung Tablet A keeps changing my spelling. Sometimes, I type a word and it changes into two words. I better use laptop instead of the tablet.

Atanavat

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #59 on: April 25, 2017, 09:06:37 AM »
(As I understand it)
Anatta teaching rejects a  "permanent" self. There is the experience of this life and the next. The (your) consciousness transmigrates (is reborn) but is always changing and has no center or essence (soul).
Even though external reality is impermanent (anicca) it still perisits. The world/universe is constant and endless. Constantly and endlessly changing, without center or essence. The internal and external are the same in this regard.
If "your" consciousness did not go on to a new life, the "threat" of Karma and Samsara would vanish into thin air. Why there always is so much polemic regarding this doctrine, is much more mystifying that the teaching itself  ::)
« Last Edit: April 25, 2017, 09:09:30 AM by Atanavat »

Middleway

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #60 on: April 26, 2017, 03:41:12 AM »
(As I understand it)
There is the experience of this life and the next.

How do you know there is next life? Even though you prefaced your statements with "as you understand it", it still is speculation.

The world/universe is constant and endless.
How do you know the world/universe is endless? Do you mean temporally or spatially? or both? What do you mean by constant? Do you mean permanent? Speculation again!

Constantly and endlessly changing, without center or essence. The internal and external are the same in this regard.
When there is no center to this universe, then how do you define internal and external? internal or external to what?

If "your" consciousness did not go on to a new life, the "threat" of Karma and Samsara would vanish into thin air.
Good. Let my karma vanish into the thin air. But my so-called consciousness will still be part of the changing universe. So no worries there!

Why there always is so much polemic regarding this doctrine, is much more mystifying that the teaching itself  ::)
Yes indeed! You came back to the forum after a long hiatus and chose to comment on this topic among many others. Why is that? Aren't indulging in the same behavior you are accusing of others?

Please don't take my comments seriously! When I read your post, it put a smile on my face. I also used to be very certain about how this universe works. Been there, done that and got the t-shirt to prove it! Just read my earlier posts.

Welcome back!

Middleway
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 03:42:55 AM by Middleway »
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

dharma bum

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Re: If there is no self in Buddhism what gets reborn?
« Reply #61 on: April 26, 2017, 05:14:21 AM »
the karma theory is useful to tie all the loose ends. the thought that life has no intrinsic purpose and the universe is chaotic and does not reward your moral behaviour is simply too unbearable, so we create this karma theory. "sure, in this life bad things happen to good people, but surely somebody is keeping accounts and in the next life, we will be rewarded for our good behaviour." karma, heaven, hell have been created not as a threat, or to enforce behaviour (as many people suspect). they are natural consequences of the human desire to impose some sort of order on a universe that is basically random.
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