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I have seen so many people till now who are very miserable because they were born ugly, poor, with less intelligence. And this world is cruel to ugly, poor and dumb people and there is no doubt about that, it's a fact. And I'm also one of those people who got treated badly for being ugly and unintelligent. I neither have good looks nor I've intelligence and good memory and because of that I couldn't excel in my academics as our academic success is measured by exams that test our memory. I am disgusted with this miserable life and want to get rid of this misery. There is no hope in present life but I want a good life in my next birth where I'll be blessed with beauty, intellect and good traits and devotion. What should I do in this life to get such good rebirth in my next life? Or it would be better if I didn't have to take birth in this world.

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  • With due apologies, the title might be confusing, since it implies nothing more than desire for pleasure, while the detailed explanation that you offer for backing it up proves a thoughtful and considerate approach to the problem of life, and the last sentence is actually a hint at innate wisdom and consideration. A title that would probably do more justice to your pertinent approach could be one that asks if it is preferable to be born with beauty and intellect or is it better not be be born again at all. (P.S.: discerning one's faults and looking for a solution is a mark of intelligence)
    – user24850
    May 1, 2023 at 13:13
  • Beauty >> by Metta and Wisdom >> by Asking Dhamma-questions from monks (according to the Suttas)
    – Blake
    May 9, 2023 at 11:17
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    @DhammaAnatta thanks alot for your suggestion, I've reframed my title and I think now it's good. If you find any mistakes in my question, please correct me. I don't know English much but I am trying to improve it. So if you find any mistake, please let me know and I'll rectify my mistakes.
    – Anurag
    May 17, 2023 at 10:38

5 Answers 5

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The Pali suttas say:

  1. The way that leads to being beautiful is not having an angry and irritable character; even when criticised a lot, one is not offended, does not become angry, hostile and resentful, and does not display anger, hate and bitterness. MN 135
  2. The way that leads to wealth is giving food, drink, clothing, carriages, garlands, scents, unguents, beds, dwelling and lamps to recluses or brahmins.MN 135
  3. The way that leads to wisdom is to visit a recluse or a brahmin and ask: ‘Venerable sir, what is wholesome? What is unwholesome? What is blameable? What is blameless? What should be cultivated? What should not be cultivated? What kind of action will lead to my harm and suffering for a long time? What kind of action will lead to my welfare and happiness for a long time?’ MN 135
  4. The way to prevent weakening of intellect is abstinence from indulging in intoxicants which cause infatuation and heedlessness. DN 31
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    very nice quotation for point no.1
    – user24850
    Jul 14, 2023 at 5:29
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Beauty >> by Metta

Wisdom >> by Asking Dhamma-questions from monks (with the desire to know Dhamma)

Social status >> by Respecting who worthy of respect

Life span >> by Abstaining from Killing

Health >> by Abstaining from Torture

Wealth >> by Generosity

Refer Cullakammavibhanga sutta and the Sutta to Mallika along with Commentaries.

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With all due consideration,

Truthfully, you have answered your own question in the most accurate and comprehensive manner: it would be better if I didn't have to take birth in this world.

Firstly, because birth is suffering, or misery as you call it. People that are considered beautiful, looking for appreciation and contentment because of this relative criterion are actually living a life of ignorance. True beauty is only found inwardly, through developing the qualities of enlightenment, or as a famous saying goes "a beautiful life is the one lived with mindfulness and equanimity".

The same with conventional intelligence which is measured in quantitative terms. True intelligence means right understanding, or right view, as it is also called. And using the notion that you chose, true intelligence means to know truthfully what is misery, what is the cause of misery, what is the eradication of misery and what is the path that progresses towards the eradication of misery, or the Noble Eightfold Path, as it is called.

With acquiring such wisdom and with putting it into practice, misery will be gradually abandoned, the wickedness of the world will no longer have any effect and the mind will become increasingly pure until perfect freedom of mind is realized through direct experience. And there is no other richness greater then the knowledge of the truth, and nothing is worth more then a mind free from misery.

By saying I am disgusted with this miserable life and want to get rid of this misery you are actually treading on the right path and yes, there is hope in this very life for the complete abandonment of misery. Do study the Noble Eightfold Path as taught by the Perfectly Enlightened One and do practice it. The results will speak volumes in a way that no external information is able to.

In the words of the truly blessed one: evanescence is the nature of created things, earnestly strive for the one true achievement

Respectfully

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  • The suttas contain two types of dhamma: mundane & supramundane. May 2, 2023 at 4:53
  • There is no mundane Vs supramundane suffering, no mundane Vs supramundane universal cause of suffering, no mundane Vs supramundane extinction of suffering and no mundane Vs supramundane method for the extinction of suffering. All-in-all, there is no mundane Vs supramundane teaching, the Awakened One did not preach relativism. The Buddha Dhamma is one and the same for all.
    – user24850
    Jul 13, 2023 at 18:25
  • Hello. MN 117 says there is mundane Vs supramundane, at this link. accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.117.than.html Your answer to this question is a correct supramundane answer. My answer to this question is a correct mundane answer. Your ideas about what the Awakened One preached has no basis in the scriptures. Also refer to this post from the Theravada Commentaries: buddhism.stackexchange.com/q/21972/8157 Again, please do not waste my time arguing with me. The user name is Dhamma Dhatu rather than Avijja Dhatu. Jul 14, 2023 at 4:56
  • i've recently read around here that this is not a debate forum and we should desist from commenting on each other posts. not sure what to make of it. presumably some people are very attached to some English notions they mixed up together in a pseudo-intellectual relativistic world-view with not even the slightest insight into Pali etymology. thus, in actual opposition to the non-relativistic, objective and impersonal teaching of the Perfectly Awakened One. will not be censoring anyone, just be aware that not all people take comments and arguments lightly around here
    – user24850
    Jul 14, 2023 at 5:06
  • We comment on posts when we think it is very necessary. We do not engage in extended debate. Your comments on my posts are unnecessary because my posts have already cited the Scriptures. For example, "sati" does not mean "attention", I already quoted the Scriptures showing this. Therefore the term "parimukha" cannot refer to a physical location because mindfulness can only recollect/remember mental objects. Jul 14, 2023 at 5:13
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Diligence in making all sorts of good merits will bring benefits now and in the future.

This refers to good virtues and charity.

For one who desires a continuous flow of exceptional delights— long life, beauty, fame and reputation, heaven, and birth in an eminent family—

the astute praise diligence in making merit. Being diligent, an astute person secures both benefits:

the benefit in this life, and in lives to come. A wise one, comprehending the meaning, is called ‘astute’.”
AN 5.43

There's a good guide on making good merit below.

Skillful Bodily Action

"And how is one made pure in three ways by bodily action? There is the case where a certain person, abandoning the taking of life, abstains from the taking of life. He dwells with his rod laid down, his knife laid down, scrupulous, merciful, compassionate for the welfare of all living beings. Abandoning the taking of what is not given, he abstains from taking what is not given. He does not take, in the manner of a thief, things in a village or a wilderness that belong to others and have not been given by them. Abandoning sensual misconduct, he abstains from sensual misconduct. He does not get sexually involved with those who are protected by their mothers, their fathers, their brothers, their sisters, their relatives, or their Dhamma; those with husbands, those who entail punishments, or even those crowned with flowers by another man. This is how one is made pure in three ways by bodily action.

Skillful Verbal Action

"And how is one made pure in four ways by verbal action? There is the case where a certain person, abandoning false speech, abstains from false speech. When he has been called to a town meeting, a group meeting, a gathering of his relatives, his guild, or of the royalty, if he is asked as a witness, 'Come & tell, good man, what you know': If he doesn't know, he says, 'I don't know.' If he does know, he says, 'I know.' If he hasn't seen, he says, 'I haven't seen.' If he has seen, he says, 'I have seen.' Thus he doesn't consciously tell a lie for his own sake, for the sake of another, or for the sake of any reward. Abandoning false speech, he abstains from false speech. He speaks the truth, holds to the truth, is firm, reliable, no deceiver of the world. Abandoning divisive speech he abstains from divisive speech. What he has heard here he does not tell there to break those people apart from these people here. What he has heard there he does not tell here to break these people apart from those people there. Thus reconciling those who have broken apart or cementing those who are united, he loves concord, delights in concord, enjoys concord, speaks things that create concord. Abandoning abusive speech, he abstains from abusive speech. He speaks words that are soothing to the ear, that are affectionate, that go to the heart, that are polite, appealing & pleasing to people at large. Abandoning idle chatter, he abstains from idle chatter. He speaks in season, speaks what is factual, what is in accordance with the goal, the Dhamma, & the Vinaya. He speaks words worth treasuring, seasonable, reasonable, circumscribed, connected with the goal. This is how one is made pure in four ways by verbal action.

Skillful Mental Action

"And how is one made pure in three ways by mental action? There is the case where a certain person is not covetous. He does not covet the belongings of others, thinking, 'O, that what belongs to others would be mine!' He bears no ill will and is not corrupt in the resolves of his heart. [He thinks,] 'May these beings be free from animosity, free from oppression, free from trouble, and may they look after themselves with ease!' He has right view and is not warped in the way he sees things: 'There is what is given, what is offered, what is sacrificed. There are fruits & results of good & bad actions. There is this world & the next world. There is mother & father. There are spontaneously reborn beings; there are brahmans & contemplatives who, faring rightly & practicing rightly, proclaim this world & the next after having directly known & realized it for themselves.' This is how one is made pure in three ways by mental action.
AN 10.176

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    This answer might be clearer or more detailed with an another reference, to what the all sorts of good merits are.
    – ChrisW
    May 1, 2023 at 20:37
  • @ChrisW Thank you. Added.
    – ruben2020
    May 2, 2023 at 11:38
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Sir living in this world with craving of any kind is rife with conflicts. Only nibbana is devoid of it. The thing is everything you desire you can't have, for this world is outside your full control. Imagine you were born again with handsome face but in a place where you had no fame whatsoever. You'll get sick and tired of looking at mirror. 😂 What's good a face if there are no people to appreciate it. But maybe you'll try your luck at being famous / impactful. But there's no guarantee. You will also want to be born rich otherwise you'll have to toil hard all your life. Also others may make your life hell because of jealousy. So no guarantee you'll have every perfect conditions in your next life. I have seen plenty good looking people throwing away their lives because beauty is no guarantee for happiness.

It's best to be tired of forms, feelings, perception otherwise life will be a tough ride.

You should enter the road that leads to the unconditioned.

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