Author Topic: How did He know?  (Read 515 times)

Offline bahman

  • Member
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
How did He know?
« on: May 02, 2017, 06:47:16 am »
 How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.

Offline VincentRJ

  • Member
  • Posts: 179
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2017, 03:58:58 am »
Too difficult to answer. However, if one doesn't engage in sex and have children, that's one obvious way of stopping the cycle of rebirth. Buddha sired a son before he embarked upon his path to enlightenment. Both his son and wife later became followers and did not procreate.

Offline francis

  • Member
  • Posts: 1455
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2017, 07:00:47 am »
How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.


Siddhartha Gautama

Enlightenment

While meditating under a Bodhi tree in Bodh-Gaya, south of Gaya in the state of Bihar, India, the Bodhisattva experiences the Great Enlightenment, which reveals to him the way of salvation from suffering. He spends seven weeks meditating in the vicinity of the site of the Bodhi tree and attains the status of a fully realised Buddha at the age of 35.

First Sermon

Buddha finds his former five disciples in Benares. In his first sermon he teaches them what will become the gist of Buddhism. Upon hearing it, one of the disciples instantly attains the status of an arhat (=one with enlightened wisdom). This event marks the beginning of the Buddhist teaching and his disciples become the first five members of the sangha (=Buddhist order).

Buddha passes into Nirvana

Having achieved the goal of spreading the teaching to the greatest number of people, Buddha dies at the age of eighty years, as a result of food poisoning. He dies in a forest near Kusinagara, Nepal, in the company of his followers reclining on a bed where he speaks his last words: “All compounded things are ephemeral; work diligently on your salvation.” With these words on his lips, he passes into the state of Nirvana.


"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline bahman

  • Member
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2017, 08:01:51 am »
Too difficult to answer. However, if one doesn't engage in sex and have children, that's one obvious way of stopping the cycle of rebirth. Buddha sired a son before he embarked upon his path to enlightenment. Both his son and wife later became followers and did not procreate.

 I don't understand. I thought that breaking the chain of rebirth is possible by gaining nirvana. What having children has to do with the rebirth?

Offline bahman

  • Member
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2017, 08:05:14 am »
How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.


Siddhartha Gautama

Enlightenment

While meditating under a Bodhi tree in Bodh-Gaya, south of Gaya in the state of Bihar, India, the Bodhisattva experiences the Great Enlightenment, which reveals to him the way of salvation from suffering. He spends seven weeks meditating in the vicinity of the site of the Bodhi tree and attains the status of a fully realised Buddha at the age of 35.

First Sermon

Buddha finds his former five disciples in Benares. In his first sermon he teaches them what will become the gist of Buddhism. Upon hearing it, one of the disciples instantly attains the status of an arhat (=one with enlightened wisdom). This event marks the beginning of the Buddhist teaching and his disciples become the first five members of the sangha (=Buddhist order).

Buddha passes into Nirvana

Having achieved the goal of spreading the teaching to the greatest number of people, Buddha dies at the age of eighty years, as a result of food poisoning. He dies in a forest near Kusinagara, Nepal, in the company of his followers reclining on a bed where he speaks his last words: “All compounded things are ephemeral; work diligently on your salvation.” With these words on his lips, he passes into the state of Nirvana.


 I understand that He attained Nirvana. You however didn't answer my question. How did He know?

 Moreover, one fall in trap of rebirth forever if she/he cannot attain Nirvana. How one can then say that people are in state of ephemeral?

Offline francis

  • Member
  • Posts: 1455
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2017, 08:25:04 am »
How did He know?

Good grief bahman, the Buddha reached enlightenment while meditating under the Bodhi tree, as described above.

Suggest you look up wiki if you want more details.

The Buddha’s awakening is well documented.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2017, 08:32:58 am by francis »
"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline francis

  • Member
  • Posts: 1455
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2017, 08:31:07 am »
I don't understand. I thought that breaking the chain of rebirth is possible by gaining nirvana.

There are three junctures on the nidana chain, where the cycle of rebirth can be broken.

"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline bahman

  • Member
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2017, 09:25:47 am »
How did He know?

Good grief bahman, the Buddha reached enlightenment while meditating under the Bodhi tree, as described above.

Suggest you look up wiki if you want more details.

The Buddha’s awakening is well documented.

 Thanks for the references. They unfortunately didn't provide an answer to my question. Let me rephrase my question: How Buddha was sure about the breaking the cycle of rebirth if He didn't die to know that the cycle for Him is broken?

Offline IdleChater

  • Member
  • Posts: 564
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2017, 03:24:38 pm »
How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.


Siddhartha Gautama

Enlightenment

While meditating under a Bodhi tree in Bodh-Gaya, south of Gaya in the state of Bihar, India, the Bodhisattva experiences the Great Enlightenment, which reveals to him the way of salvation from suffering. He spends seven weeks meditating in the vicinity of the site of the Bodhi tree and attains the status of a fully realised Buddha at the age of 35.

First Sermon

Buddha finds his former five disciples in Benares. In his first sermon he teaches them what will become the gist of Buddhism. Upon hearing it, one of the disciples instantly attains the status of an arhat (=one with enlightened wisdom). This event marks the beginning of the Buddhist teaching and his disciples become the first five members of the sangha (=Buddhist order).

Buddha passes into Nirvana

Having achieved the goal of spreading the teaching to the greatest number of people, Buddha dies at the age of eighty years, as a result of food poisoning. He dies in a forest near Kusinagara, Nepal, in the company of his followers reclining on a bed where he speaks his last words: “All compounded things are ephemeral; work diligently on your salvation.” With these words on his lips, he passes into the state of Nirvana.


 I understand that He attained Nirvana. You however didn't answer my question. How did He know?


In the same way you can differentiate between dream and waking states.  A dream can seem very real, so real, that a nightmare can result in a heart attack.  Just the same, when you're awake, you know it. You don't need proof.  You just know. It's taught that it was the same for the Budda.  Right after enlightenment, he encountered someone who asked him who/what he was.  He replied, "awake".

Quote
Moreover, one fall in trap of rebirth forever if she/he cannot attain Nirvana. How one can then say that people are in state of ephemeral?


Because, it can be demonstrated that a being changes from moment to moment, from one being to another. 

Offline VincentRJ

  • Member
  • Posts: 179
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2017, 04:59:58 pm »
Too difficult to answer. However, if one doesn't engage in sex and have children, that's one obvious way of stopping the cycle of rebirth. Buddha sired a son before he embarked upon his path to enlightenment. Both his son and wife later became followers and did not procreate.

 I don't understand. I thought that breaking the chain of rebirth is possible by gaining nirvana. What having children has to do with the rebirth?

I was making a reference to the First Noble Truth, "Birth is suffering, aging is suffering, sickness is suffering, dissociation from the loved is suffering, not to get what one wants is suffering."

If one accepts this is true, then one of the most logical steps one should take, in order to minimise suffering in the present and suffering in the future for one's offspring, is not to procreate, which might seem a bit nihilistic but seems logical to me.

The process of rebirth seems to involve an invisible spirit which contains the essence of a person's character, and which leaves the body upon death, and floats around until it is drawn to a couple engaged in the act of sexual intercourse, and then infuses the 'child to be' with the characteristics of the person who has died.

If nobody procreates then the problem is solved. Rebirth is not possible whether one has achieved Nirvana or not.

However, people with a scientific background, who might have difficulty in accepting this rather fanciful Buddhist process of rebirth, tend to believe the process should not be taken literally, and that the word 'rebirth' does not refer to an actual physical rebirth, but to a rebirth of thoughts, feelings and attitudes within one's own mind in the present time.

Thus, a cessation of all thought, and a complete stillness of the mind through processes of meditation, is the goal, which is equivalent to Nirvana.

Offline stillpointdancer

  • Enlightenment through insight
  • Member
  • Posts: 349
  • Dancing at the Still Point describes my meditation
    • View Profile
    • Enlightenment for Grown Ups
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2017, 02:39:17 am »
How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.
It's simple bahman. The moment of enlightenment, for the Buddha, gave him insight which he interpreted that way. From what he said, he interpreted his insight to mean that he was off the wheel, that there was no need for him to suffer about what would happen after his death. Of course he didn't return from death, as perhaps in the story of Christ, to tell us what he saw after he died. What are you thinking to say that he could?

Your language is strange when you say, "never experience what the life would be after His death." How could he experience life after death if he had stopped the cycle of rebirth? It doesn't make sense to me. You need to make what you want to say to me a little clearer.
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Offline bahman

  • Member
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2017, 10:19:26 am »
Too difficult to answer. However, if one doesn't engage in sex and have children, that's one obvious way of stopping the cycle of rebirth. Buddha sired a son before he embarked upon his path to enlightenment. Both his son and wife later became followers and did not procreate.

 I don't understand. I thought that breaking the chain of rebirth is possible by gaining nirvana. What having children has to do with the rebirth?

I was making a reference to the First Noble Truth, "Birth is suffering, aging is suffering, sickness is suffering, dissociation from the loved is suffering, not to get what one wants is suffering."

If one accepts this is true, then one of the most logical steps one should take, in order to minimise suffering in the present and suffering in the future for one's offspring, is not to procreate, which might seem a bit nihilistic but seems logical to me.

The process of rebirth seems to involve an invisible spirit which contains the essence of a person's character, and which leaves the body upon death, and floats around until it is drawn to a couple engaged in the act of sexual intercourse, and then infuses the 'child to be' with the characteristics of the person who has died.

If nobody procreates then the problem is solved. Rebirth is not possible whether one has achieved Nirvana or not.

However, people with a scientific background, who might have difficulty in accepting this rather fanciful Buddhist process of rebirth, tend to believe the process should not be taken literally, and that the word 'rebirth' does not refer to an actual physical rebirth, but to a rebirth of thoughts, feelings and attitudes within one's own mind in the present time.

Thus, a cessation of all thought, and a complete stillness of the mind through processes of meditation, is the goal, which is equivalent to Nirvana.

 Well, you cannot stop rebirth even you stop procreation. There will be still new tree, animal, etc.

Offline IdleChater

  • Member
  • Posts: 564
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2017, 04:33:45 pm »

If one accepts this is true,

I'm not so sure that simply accepting the 4NT is sufficient.  It seems to me a realization, an awakening to the veracity of the 4NT is what is needed

Quote
then one of the most logical steps one should take, in order to minimise suffering in the present and suffering in the future for one's offspring, is not to procreate, which might seem a bit nihilistic but seems logical to me.

I don't think it's nihilistic at all, but also question the logic.  If you do not procreate then rebirth would be taken as another.  Rebirth can also be taken as a lower realm, too, not strictly human.

Quote
The process of rebirth seems to involve an invisible spirit which contains the essence of a person's character, and which leaves the body upon death, and floats around until it is drawn to a couple engaged in the act of sexual intercourse, and then infuses the 'child to be' with the characteristics of the person who has died.

It doesn't, at least not according to the teachings I've recieved. There is no spirit that moves from one life to another.  That is eternalism.  I still like Chogyam Trungpa's answer to what goes to rebirth.  He said, "Our bad habits.".

Quote
If nobody procreates then the problem is solved. Rebirth is not possible whether one has achieved Nirvana or not

That would have to include every single sentient being.  Not likely.  Not possible.

Quote
However, people with a scientific background, who might have difficulty in accepting this rather fanciful Buddhist process of rebirth, tend to believe the process should not be taken literally, and that the word 'rebirth' does not refer to an actual physical rebirth, but to a rebirth of thoughts, feelings and attitudes within one's own mind in the present time.

It can be seen as both, or more properly, the same thing.  Birth and death, applies to the moment, karma driving us from one moment to the next.  The death of our so-called "physical body", which is itself illusory, is just a moment, karma driving the moment to the next.

Offline Rahul

  • Member
  • Posts: 157
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2017, 01:02:23 am »
How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.
Answering this will require understanding 'Nirvana' and 'death'. None of us have experienced nirvana, have we?

Bahman's questions must come as a wake up call to all the people who elaborate on 'nirvana' and 'cycle of rebirth' and 'karma' etc. Let us acknowledge we do not yet know what these are. Let us stop speculating and claiming what these are. Let us strive to find these on our own.

Offline Spiny Norman

  • Member
  • Posts: 5097
  • Cool baby yeah!
    • View Profile
Re: How did He know?
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2017, 01:32:12 am »
How did Buddha know that one can stop the cycle of rebirth by attaining nirvana? He was alive while He attained nirvana and never experience what the life would be after His death.


According to the suttas, the Buddha remembered his previous lives prior to his enlightenment, and saw the whole cycle of rebirth with beings reborn in different destinations according to their kamma.


"When the mind was thus concentrated, purified, bright, unblemished, rid of defilement, pliant, malleable, steady, & attained to imperturbability, I directed it to the knowledge of recollecting my past lives. I recollected my manifold past lives, i.e., one birth, two... five, ten... fifty, a hundred, a thousand, a hundred thousand, many eons of cosmic contraction, many eons of cosmic expansion, many eons of cosmic contraction & expansion: 'There I had such a name, belonged to such a clan, had such an appearance. Such was my food, such my experience of pleasure & pain, such the end of my life. Passing away from that state, I re-arose there. There too I had such a name, belonged to such a clan, had such an appearance. Such was my food, such my experience of pleasure & pain, such the end of my life. Passing away from that state, I re-arose here.' Thus I remembered my manifold past lives in their modes & details.

"This was the first knowledge I attained in the first watch of the night. Ignorance was destroyed; knowledge arose; darkness was destroyed; light arose — as happens in one who is heedful, ardent, & resolute.

"When the mind was thus concentrated, purified, bright, unblemished, rid of defilement, pliant, malleable, steady, & attained to imperturbability, I directed it to the knowledge of the passing away & reappearance of beings. I saw — by means of the divine eye, purified & surpassing the human — beings passing away & re-appearing, and I discerned how they are inferior & superior, beautiful & ugly, fortunate & unfortunate in accordance with their kamma: 'These beings — who were endowed with bad conduct of body, speech & mind, who reviled noble ones, held wrong views and undertook actions under the influence of wrong views — with the break-up of the body, after death, have re-appeared in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. But these beings — who were endowed with good conduct of body, speech, & mind, who did not revile noble ones, who held right views and undertook actions under the influence of right views — with the break-up of the body, after death, have re-appeared in the good destinations, in the heavenly world.' Thus — by means of the divine eye, purified & surpassing the human — I saw beings passing away & re-appearing, and I discerned how they are inferior & superior, beautiful & ugly, fortunate & unfortunate in accordance with their kamma.

"This was the second knowledge I attained in the second watch of the night. Ignorance was destroyed; knowledge arose; darkness was destroyed; light arose — as happens in one who is heedful, ardent, & resolute."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.004.than.html
« Last Edit: June 13, 2017, 01:38:45 am by Spiny Norman »

 


SimplePortal 2.3.3 © 2008-2010, SimplePortal