Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

  1. #1

    A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Namaste all,

    It pains me in some ways to say this, and I know it will sound like 'blasphemy' to some. Not in the Abrahamic sense where you become an infidel, but in the sense where you become dissociated from a hefty part of your tradition.

    It is in fact the whole idea of reincarnation which I have come to find less compelling in my case personally. I have not given up on it, yet. I still accept authoritative statements from Krsna in the Bhagavad Gita, among other places, that it is in fact true. But doubts have been creeping in my mind: what if it is not?

    I have heard that in some strands of Buddhism, the moment after you die the Absolute Truth presents itself to you, and at that point, then and there, you can be liberated. This seems to cast the whole notion of endless cycles of birth and death (something which, admittedly, I've had trouble in the past accepting) in a negative light. It simply does not strike me as reasonable that any living entity could persist in his ignorance almost indefinitely.

    I still do believe in a personal God, Krsna or Narayana, and this makes my doubts about reincarnation all the more ill-juxtaposed, one might say.

    I do believe, and this is in my view beyond doubt, that there have been human incarnations with the knowledge impregnated into them of other persons. Whether they received such an intimation from close association with that personality in a pre-natal state, or if they accessed the "Akashic" record, I do not know. But of that I am quite confident of.
    How can I put this in a sentence? Try next time.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    December 2011
    Location
    Yorkshire, England
    Age
    58
    Posts
    52
    Rep Power
    141

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kismet View Post
    Namaste all,

    It pains me in some ways to say this, and I know it will sound like 'blasphemy' to some. Not in the Abrahamic sense where you become an infidel, but in the sense where you become dissociated from a hefty part of your tradition.

    It is in fact the whole idea of reincarnation which I have come to find less compelling in my case personally. I have not given up on it, yet. I still accept authoritative statements from Krsna in the Bhagavad Gita, among other places, that it is in fact true. But doubts have been creeping in my mind: what if it is not?

    I have heard that in some strands of Buddhism, the moment after you die the Absolute Truth presents itself to you, and at that point, then and there, you can be liberated. This seems to cast the whole notion of endless cycles of birth and death (something which, admittedly, I've had trouble in the past accepting) in a negative light. It simply does not strike me as reasonable that any living entity could persist in his ignorance almost indefinitely.

    I still do believe in a personal God, Krsna or Narayana, and this makes my doubts about reincarnation all the more ill-juxtaposed, one might say.

    I do believe, and this is in my view beyond doubt, that there have been human incarnations with the knowledge impregnated into them of other persons. Whether they received such an intimation from close association with that personality in a pre-natal state, or if they accessed the "Akashic" record, I do not know. But of that I am quite confident of.
    Aum,
    Doubts and questions are not blasphemy in Hinduism. There are many variations in beliefs regarding reincarnation. Most believe that all will eventually reach Moksha, but there are some schools that teach that some souls can be incarnated for ever in lower realms. My sampradaya teaches that all souls reach moksha at mahapralaya if they have not done so already.

    My reasoning is that for in order for it to reach moksha we have to learn ourselves. Imagine that instead of growing up and learning the hard way you had the option of a child being snatched away and replaced by a grown person. You would say "no this isn't my child", though if the child grew it would be. Some faiths, like Christianity, recognise that if people were put in heaven together as they are now it would not be heaven for long, but say there is a sudden magical change. In my view that means that it is not really the same "you" in heaven according to the beliefs. Growth of the self is the only way that you can reach moksha.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    November 2010
    Posts
    1,278
    Rep Power
    1636

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    The question of what happens after "liberation" is an important issue amongst various Darshanas and is dealt with in chapter 4 of the Brahmasutra Bhashya.

    As regards reincarnation, keep in mind that for the Hindu philosopher, it is possibly the only way to absolve Brahman of the charge of having created evil and partiality. This is dealt with here.

    The only way I know of that Buddhists deal with this problem is to deny the validity of the existence of evil in the ultimate realm [as opposed to the phenomenal realm.]

    If reincarnation were NOT true, I cannot see any reason why one would want to remain a theist. A Xian or a Muslim who does NOT believe in reincarnation finally has to look at Satan as the source of evil in the world, but Satan himself was a creation of YHWH/Allah.

    Whether reincarnation is true or not, it appears to be the only metaphysical premise that retains the omnibenevolence of Brahman.

    Another advantage, philosophically speaking, of reincarnation is that at no point in time was Brahman all by itself. Prakriti/Jivas are infinite in number and co-eternal with Brahman. Why would an all-blissful God feel the need to create from scratch non-existent Prakriti and Jivas? Does this God have any unsatisfied desire to be worshipped, etc.? If so, can this God be called all-blissful? If God is NOT all blissful, is he ontologically the greatest being?

  4. #4

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Quote Originally Posted by wundermonk View Post
    As regards reincarnation, keep in mind that for the Hindu philosopher, it is possibly the only way to absolve Brahman of the charge of having created evil and partiality. This is dealt with here.
    I don't think Brahman or Bhagavan ever created evil. If what you mean by evil is ignorance, then I suppose it was always there in the form of a basic incompleteness, avidya, which is said to be beginningless.

    Quote Originally Posted by wundermonk View Post
    The only way I know of that Buddhists deal with this problem is to deny the validity of the existence of evil in the ultimate realm [as opposed to the phenomenal realm.]
    I don't think you need to do that if evil is merely ignorance. If, as I think, we arose from a primordial state which was endless, infinite in its potential, then our entering into time is not difficult to fathom. Matter then is like an admixture of actuality which is the direct consequence of that endless potentiality.

    This is difficult to communicate for me. But many years ago I identified with a symbol that seems to communicate this idea of endless potential, suddenly breaking outwardly into as it were matter and finiteness.



    Quote Originally Posted by wundermonk View Post
    If reincarnation were NOT true, I cannot see any reason why one would want to remain a theist. A Xian or a Muslim who does NOT believe in reincarnation finally has to look at Satan as the source of evil in the world, but Satan himself was a creation of YHWH/Allah.
    You're right. There are definitely problems. I don't buy that story at all. However, I'm wondering if avidya could be in a sense "hosted" or "incubated" within Brahman as it were, again, in an endlessly potential state.

    Quote Originally Posted by wundermonk View Post
    Whether reincarnation is true or not, it appears to be the only metaphysical premise that retains the omnibenevolence of Brahman.
    Consequences, arising from an indeterminable center, in terms of an endless series of "moments." I think I can accept that.

    Quote Originally Posted by wundermonk View Post
    Another advantage, philosophically speaking, of reincarnation is that at no point in time was Brahman all by itself. Prakriti/Jivas are infinite in number and co-eternal with Brahman. Why would an all-blissful God feel the need to create from scratch non-existent Prakriti and Jivas? Does this God have any unsatisfied desire to be worshipped, etc.? If so, can this God be called all-blissful? If God is NOT all blissful, is he ontologically the greatest being?
    Here I am not so sure. In Christianity God is also said to be self-sufficient and solitary. He created the world out of excess, not out of need. In any case, I no longer believe in that god.
    How can I put this in a sentence? Try next time.

  5. #5

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Quote Originally Posted by Tāṇḍava View Post
    Aum,
    Doubts and questions are not blasphemy in Hinduism. There are many variations in beliefs regarding reincarnation. Most believe that all will eventually reach Moksha, but there are some schools that teach that some souls can be incarnated for ever in lower realms. My sampradaya teaches that all souls reach moksha at mahapralaya if they have not done so already.
    All souls as in every last one? In that case, how does the cosmic manifestation maintain itself? There's a lot of questions here. Are there such things as "created" beings who participate in the soulhood of other entities? Is this what is meant when one is referred to as the "son" of God? Brahma, for instance, generates himself from Maha-Vishnu, whereas, did he exist before? Atman is eternal. But are issues of personal identity necessarily contingent?

    These things are fascinating to be sure. If souls truly are eternal and infinite, then they are neither exhausted (for they amount to an infinity - not even a set of infinity, but infinity proper - uncircumscribed and unlimited!), and they are always for the most part in potential: an endless potential state which somehow crosses to the other shore of time. How this is I do not know, though I would have to chalk it up to the potency of the Lord.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tāṇḍava View Post
    My reasoning is that for in order for it to reach moksha we have to learn ourselves. Imagine that instead of growing up and learning the hard way you had the option of a child being snatched away and replaced by a grown person. You would say "no this isn't my child", though if the child grew it would be. Some faiths, like Christianity, recognise that if people were put in heaven together as they are now it would not be heaven for long, but say there is a sudden magical change. In my view that means that it is not really the same "you" in heaven according to the beliefs. Growth of the self is the only way that you can reach moksha.
    It's all a matter of water changing into wine isn't it!? Just imagine, people are going hither and thither according to their free wills. Sooner or later they find their true freedom however: and that is within their own selves. They are freedom: endless, liberated, non-compulsory. And then we can be One, not before. I imagine this is what Vaikuntha is like: people are always lining up to enter at the door, and this will never cease, for all eternity.

    What a splendid vision.
    How can I put this in a sentence? Try next time.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    September 2010
    Posts
    1,064
    Rep Power
    1002

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    How old are you Kismet? 20s? Starting life? Things yet to conquer?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    June 2010
    Location
    Chennai
    Posts
    809
    Rep Power
    451

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Good Topic for discussion.

    Birth happens at all level of matter right through cycles of universe to cycles of the earths to cycles of lifeforms including humans.

    Death being the detachment of the mind from the body, the mind plays a big role in the continuity between the bodies. Just as it is said Vishnu is the continuity between the dissolution and the birth of new creation.

    "I" being the essence of the mind, lives through life and death.

    Now only part that is uncertain is whether my "mind" which will be going out of this body will re-enter another body.

    If it does not then what are the consequences :

    1. All bodies will start from same point of character, capabilities, qualities, etc. hardly there will be Einstein, Vivekananda, Shankaracharya, etc or all will be like them. In all likeliness we will always have Satya Yuga

    2. If the mind dissolves after death, where from the new minds are getting generated.

    3. As we know that the minds are the cause for the creation, whether at individual level or at the creation level, there can be no cyclic creation if the minds are dissolved.

    4. It also means that "I" will die, which does not match with reality, where "I" is continuous through sleep, unconsciousness, coma, etc. Right from the highest order to the micro order, the rules are same.

    So many theories which otherwise could bring together the Science and Knowledge (SD) on same platform (as we see through the unraveling of the science and the proximity of SD), will get nullified.

    Again we are limited by our 5 senses. The timeless Bramhan is much beyond these 5 senses. Neither we are anywhere near to the great spiritual scientists who have again and again corroborated the same ideas.

    Buddha, Jesus, and others are great but are individual efforts only and thereby limited.
    Love and best wishes:hug:

  8. #8

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Quote Originally Posted by Pietro Impagliazzo View Post
    How old are you Kismet? 20s? Starting life? Things yet to conquer?
    Well, yes actually. Do you feel I am wasting my time on these boards?

    There's only so many things 20 year olds can do in 'real life.'
    How can I put this in a sentence? Try next time.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    September 2007
    Location
    Canada
    Age
    64
    Posts
    7,184
    Rep Power
    5022

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kismet View Post
    Well, yes actually. Do you feel I am wasting my time on these boards?

    There's only so many things 20 year olds can do in 'real life.'
    Vannakkam Kismet: Nobody is wasting their time ... ever. The other day I had an odd subconscious dream ... it involved cold water, surfing, tipping boats, steering boats, and a bunch of other stuff in it. But also a former student was in it. One of those smart ones. So, out of curiousity I googled the name. She is now a doctor, and married. On the day after the wedding she shaved her head for a cancer benefit, and raised 19 000 dollars for cancer.

    But ... back when she was either 11 or 12 she taught me that bandaids are racist. I have never seen bandaids in the same light again.

    So we are all teachers, and we are all students.

    Aum Namasivaya

  10. #10
    Join Date
    September 2010
    Posts
    1,064
    Rep Power
    1002

    Re: A Doubt I've been Harboring...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kismet View Post
    Well, yes actually. Do you feel I am wasting my time on these boards?

    There's only so many things 20 year olds can do in 'real life.'
    Look at my own age, why would I be so full of myself to tell you that? LOL

    Just consider this: This is the age of kama, age of conquest, to build a carreer and a family.

    The mind naturally tends to a materialistic, rationalistic, atheistic stance in order to propell ourselves into the world.

    Try to look at reincarnation for what it can be, I always see a strong attachment to the ego whenever reincarnation is discussed, everything you think you are may very well be lost, but that's not really you, right? That's the point, the ego is just a possible representation of the Self.

    But for the time being, the first half of life, one needs to work on the ego for then and only then to start the process of letting go of it.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Doubt about Shri Rudram
    By kundanghanekar in forum Shaiva
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 27 December 2011, 12:07 AM
  2. Replies: 7
    Last Post: 05 December 2011, 10:01 PM
  3. Doubt About Sanjeevi ?
    By hari4u2 in forum On Dharma
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 01 May 2011, 08:06 AM
  4. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 11 October 2010, 11:57 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •