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Featured View of reincarnation

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by Conscious thoughts, Jan 6, 2019.

  1. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    A few times i have been asked about the understanding of reincarnation and if it is really true.
    It is never easy to explain how to experience past lives, but the monk Ajahn Brahm does it in a very good way in my view. In Buddhism we can experience it by entering the 4 jhanas.

    if you like you can watch the video



    If you have questions or your own thoughts of past life a discussion is alwas welcome
     
    #1 Conscious thoughts, Jan 6, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019
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  2. JJ50

    JJ50 Well-Known Member

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    I don't believe in reincarnation, once you die you cease to be, you don't come back again in another body, imo.
     
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  3. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    I respect your view on that. But i just wonder if this life is all there is what s the reason we get born in the first place? is it only coincidence that we have life?
     
  4. JJ50

    JJ50 Well-Known Member

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    Our parents procreated us, we are only an animal species, which is more evolved than the rest.
     
  5. adrian009

    adrian009 Veteran Member
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    I suppose for those of us who have not experienced past lives by entering the four jhanas it would be a matter of faith. It could be argued all the main world religions teach a form of after life and have a concept of rebirth, though not necessarily reincarnation.

    Buddhism can appear to be the most atheistic religion with a tendency not to believe in a soul that continues beyond death on account of the concept of anatta or anatman (non existence of self). Of course some Buddhists such as yourself believe in reincarnation like many Hindus whereas others don't. I'm trying to better understand Buddhism and would appreciate your insights about the reasons Buddhists have divergent beliefs when it comes to the after life.
     
  6. Shantanu

    Shantanu Well-Known Member

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    In Hinduism there is the belief that souls come back to earth to be 'cleansed' until they have climbed the 'karmic ladder' to find absolution in the heavens (liberation).

    I once had an experience when I was struggling with upheavals in my life when my dead mothers (real and step) visited me as souls and my real mother confirmed to me that there is after life that way. But I cannot be sure. I have asked God whether this experience was true or not, and He would not answer to confirm or reject the idea. She/they have never again visited me despite further trials in my life. May be therefore it was a delusion of mine that she was a 'soul' as I have suffered from a condition known to psychiatrists as 'persistent delusional disorder' that the UK State enforces 6 mg of antipsychotic risperidone medication together with 100 mg antidepressant sertraline medication into me daily. Maybe it was God who had visited me in the guise of my dead mothers. I have no way of telling now except to examine the question afresh on the basis of my theory of everything. God exists for certain and plays games with the human mind.

    With that in mind, I can only judge the question of 'reincarnation' on bare facts on the basis of the science as I know it.

    Brahman is the total energy of the universe and consists of physical energy and consciousness energy which is differentiated into guna consciousness triad of sattvic, rajasic and tamasic gunas (properties or attributes). The consciousness energy consists of the 'atman' of the individual (life force and soul force that is part of the atoms that one is consisted of). The atman therefore reincarnates after death as the body disintegrates into atoms and molecules and gets absorbed by plants and then consumed by new animals.

    When one talks of reincarnation one means some part of the individual that has accumulated positive or negative attainments through the individuals existence. This means the soul of the individual.
    There is no mechanism known to science currently that the atman described retains the soul of the individual. What is the soul, you may ask. I will explain.

    The soul of a person is the 'jiva' called 'I' or 'You'. The soul is a description of the character of the individual with its memories and life history. It leaves the body after death and is not a physical entity that can go anywhere once the atman has disintegrated. So there is no possibility or mechanism for this 'I' therefore to then inhabit another living being after death. 'I' or the character of the individual dissipates into thin air after death. Only the disintegrated (by cremation or by burial) body consisting of the 'atman' reincarnates without retaining any of the characteristics of the preceding life.

    Thus, the point of existence is to create your own mark in life to ensure that your memory and life history lives on in this planet Earth. This is done through spending ones time creating great works and doing things that one would be remembered for. For God is Nirguna and disinterested in the way people live their lives. Only a person has a need to be close to God to help him or herself live to generate a reputation that will live on.
     
    #6 Shantanu, Jan 6, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019
  7. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    I would add to that.

    Your atoms will be reused, could be in the oceans, a blade of grass, flower, tree or perhaps one or few will end up as some future persons liver, spleen, bowel, brain etc. In this way we are all made up of dead people. It seems that is as close to reincarnation as it gets.
     
  8. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    Life is not precisely a coincidence. Entropy predicts a short period (on a universal scale) where life in this universe can exist.
     
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  9. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium अहं ब्रह्मास्मि
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    In my view, the cycle of reincarnation is ending one experience of Maya and beginning another.

    The view might seem a bit simplistic, but I think we humans have a tendency to overcomplicate things.
     
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  10. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    Thank youfor your reply and question :)
    With in Buddhism there are 10 branches and a few of them see the part of reincarnation/rebirth in a different way. And not all the branches are teachng from Buddha Sakyamuni (historical buddha) And not all the founders of the other branches within buddhism had same wisdom level as Sakyamuni so they would have understood the concept of reincarnation in different way, and that is natural.

    In my own understanding from study buddhism thru theravada teaching i see reincarnation has to do with karma and about how we have gained or not gained inner wisdom during our lifetime. example is that if you have lived a life full of hate, and been bad towards other you will be born in a lower realm of existance like animal or even insects. And if you have lived a very good morally life and cultivated mind and body, the chance to be born in a higher realm is then more likely to happen.
     
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  11. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    I'm a strong believer in reincarnation. It's not because of dogma or reading, but because of direct experience. So I'll offer up one Hindu view here, as there are other Hindu views. The Gaudiya Vaishnava view, for example, differs from the Saiva Siddhanta view.

    Firstly, there is a misunderstanding as to what actually reincarnates. It is the soul body, and it's essence, the Self God (Brahman) that reincarnates. It is not the 'I' of this ego/individual lifetime. So from the mystical Hindu view, that soul has a body, not the physical body, or the intellectual body having a soul. Some people (outside of Hinduism) believe it's this identity of this lifetime that goes o heaven, continues, etc., but that's not the Hindu view.

    So each lifetime, we (I'm using 'we' for the soul here, and often do. ) build a physical body, a mental body, and a physical body around us. it's temporary, the way a tree grows, but later dissipates. These bodies all have Sanskrit names and are written about in ancient Hindu scriptures. Individuals who have become spititual bings have the more inner bodies dominaing over the more external ones. Some people spend more time in their physical bodies, while others have the soul body more dominant. That's why holy people are shown with golden auras or halos.

    I'll relate just a couple of stories illustrating how I came to my beliefs. take them as fiction if you wish. There are several more.

    Young children are known to still have remnants of memories of the previous life, as the soul yet hasn't built it's new personality around itself. My mother related o me my first deeper words as a youngster, before I could read ... 'I want to go to the Himalayas to meditate'. This was on a western Canadian farm, no knowledge there of eastern things. I followed my maternal uncle back from India, he was killed on duty during WW2. He reincarnated as my elder brother, and I followed. I was female in the past life, and was either his lover, or his maidservant. Mom was totally convinced I was a girl in her womb. She had a very mystical nature to her, using premonition, stuff like that.

    One of the signs of previous lives is birthmarks. Somebody I know figured they were receiving a Tami l from the Sri Lankan war who was murdered by soldiers, in a brutal way. His family survived, came as family refugees to Canada, and he followed them in his astral body, the first body built around the soul body. The child he was to be this lifetime had a dark hair patch on the side of her head, at the death point. (Axe blow to the head) Hindu legends tell of such things as clues to reincarnation.

    So yeah, I believe in reincarnation. Add 10 more stories like this. It's experiential, not logical, not provable.
     
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  12. Madhuri

    Madhuri RF Goddess
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    That doesn't really answer the question though, which remains: is there a reason behind existence or is it all just coincidental? How is any of it even possible?
    I personally find any answer to this question spectacularly unfathomable.
     
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  13. Madhuri

    Madhuri RF Goddess
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    I think that reincarnation is possible but one thing I'm really curious about is whether is happens outside of the soul's control or if the soul chooses to come back.
     
  14. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    That is a very good question :)

    In my understanding it is not the "I" or ego that get reincarnated but the consiousness :) most of us do not remember past lifes, but when cultivating mind and body there is a way to gain insight to the past lives.

    I dont see a permanent soul, but even it is the same lifeform reincarnating from life time to life time it is always from a different oint of view. this is so we can learn the truth we did not enlighten to in previous lifes.
     
  15. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    My Hindu understanding is that the level of control is dependent on the age of the soul. Young souls come back quickly, the receivers are getting pot-luck off the astral. Old souls may stay awhile on the other side to learn more there, and choose a place or family to come back into. Really old enlightened souls can choose either, but don't need to return as that is the definition of moksha.

    Part of what is misunderstood is the role of the receiver. In my family, we've had 'hovering'. A soul tried to come to our family, but the stable was full so to speak, so we refused him. (I only use 'him' as in the immediate previous life, the soul had taken on a male body.) He found someone else more willing soon afterwards. The role of the receiver is taken seriously in traditional Hindus, as they will do specific rituals before conception is attempted, trying purposefully to attract higher souls, go to temple and pray the same day, try to conceive at astrologically auspicious times and all that. It's quite out in the open.
     
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  16. Madhuri

    Madhuri RF Goddess
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    If the soul is not individual, why would it have a lesson/truth to learn? What is the purpose?
     
  17. Madhuri

    Madhuri RF Goddess
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    Very interesting!
     
  18. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    When we are on earth we are "blinded" by our own ego and attachments to human life.
    we must cultivate mind and body to realize the truth behind who we are but there is no permanent soul in my understanding.

    Purpose of life is to cultivate so we no longer need to suffer in physical body.we are spiritual beings in original life
     
  19. WalterTrull

    WalterTrull Godfella

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    I don’t believe in previous lives. I should correct that. I don’t believe in previous me’s. Of course there were previous other’s lives. Life seems to be a very interesting one/whole. I feel that my human parents somehow combined views and set the me in motion. Kinda fun and a little mysterious. I’m sure life doesn’t end. I don’t think I’ll end. We’ll see.

    I don’t believe in re-incarnation, because I don’t believe in incarnation. Incarnation is the view that life resides in its image. Don’t think so.

    On-the-other-hand, there’s always Tuesday.
     
  20. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist Shrugs. I tried.

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    I had a discussion years ago with Hindu si I want to correct you. Reincarnation has to do with god. Rebirth has to do with no attachment to esoteric beliefs such as the Indian view of god. Sidhartha wasn't an atheist but he rejected god as a means to enlightenment. So, no reincarnation.

    There are many deities in Buddhism. They are tools to reach enlightenment, but unlike what I know of Hinduism, they are not enlightenment (in their case god) themselves.

    The nature of reincarnation is different than rebirth.

    Reincarnation

    Eventually we reach the acme of our spiritual progress through God realization. After realizing God we go beyond all desires, because we no longer lack anything. We transcend the chain of repeated births and deaths.
    I never knew you can experience reincarnation in this life, actually. I don't know it at all in detail. What my family and I experience (skipped my sister, I think), we don't know what category it falls in because sometimes talk about it as if it's an everyday thing. Don't know.

    I never had an experience, logical or not, that I have a soul. It's our environment to think of life as two body and mind separate. I feel we die and that's it. My experiences let me understand the permanent nature of death and acceptance of it (but haven't quite yet).

    I always had a sense I was in the holocaust, though. I can never go around those books and movies because something inside me would click and my body and nerves shot. I think I wrote about the vision of where I was; but, logic always says it comes from the mind. I never looked into it. As far as it being spiritual, naw. Unnerving yes. I don't put too much stock in it.
     
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