Questions tagged [philosophy]

The study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with reality, existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind and language. It can also be a theory or attitude that acts as a guiding principle for behaviour.

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148 views

Does false self = no self?

My new understanding (based on this post) is that the self is not permanent and is always changing. However, I still can't make the logical assertion that the self does not exist at all. At this point,...
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341 views

Was the historical Buddha infallible?

Could he have erred, even as the enlightened one?
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405 views

Do Cittamatra / Yogacara explicitly refute the existence of an external world?

Tibetan texts that belong to the genre of tenets (doctrinal classification) usually claim that the Cittamatra school refutes external existence. These texts further claim that Cittamatrin posit that '...
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68 views

Are reasons causes?

When we ask someone "why do you do that?", we are asking for her/his reasons. It someone asks me "why do you play tennis?" and I say "I like to stay fit and I like to have fun. Tennis is good ...
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673 views

What are conditioned as opposed to unconditioned phenomena?

I have come across the term 'conditioned phenomena'; what is meant by the qualifier 'conditioned'; are all phenomena conditioned, or are some phenomena unconditioned?
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142 views

When to let things let go and when to fight for them?

I find myself in conflict with the Buddhist idea of letting go. If someone insults you, is rude to you, insults a loved one, harrases you or a loved one and so on. According to Buddhism, we should ...
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248 views

Should I help an aggressive panhandler?

I recently encountered an aggressive panhandler. To be exact, he was a peddler who was selling a small good at a profitable price. I didn't end up buying anything from him because I simply didn't ...
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93 views

Is it important that the reality of things doesn't exist, instead of just behaving like things don't exist?

In some traditions their philosophy says that concrete things don't really exist, only in the mind like just an experience. But is that vision important, or could just your relation to those things as ...
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295 views

Did the Buddha ever define what he meant by “self”?

Added: I am asking this because I am not sure if anything I observe would be considered "self" according to the Buddha. I don't have this problem with craving or suffering because I can observe/...
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Does Buddhism have a model of practical rationality?

A standard model of human practical reasoning is the belief-desire-intention model of action. Very simply put: The agent has a desire (“I want to be a doctor”) and a set of beliefs (“Studying ...
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949 views

Do Buddhists put any stock in feng shui, particularly crystals?

My question relates to the view of and position on feng shui harmony by Buddhist traditions in general, and specifically in gemstones (which some believe have physical/metaphysical properties). How do ...
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Buddhist view on out of body experience (OBE)

Wikipedia defines this as, An out-of-body experience (OBE or sometimes OOBE) is an experience that typically involves a sensation of floating outside one's body and, in some cases, perceiving ...
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811 views

Emptiness in Theravada and Mahayana

What is the difference between the concept of emptiness (Śūnyatā in Sanskrit, or suññatā in Pali) in the Theravada tradition and the concept of emptiness in the Mahayana tradition? From my basic ...
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714 views

I have some people coming over who practice Buddhism, what should I know?

My family is helping two people from Nepal to come to the United States to study, and their family will be visiting us temporarily. I was told that their family practices Buddhism, but I find myself ...
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198 views

Nagarjuna and the Schools

I am confused by the variety of views within Buddhism. It appears to me that Nagarjuna provides a complete philosophical justification and explanation for the Buddha's teachings and that this is ...
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286 views

How do you understand Ananda Sutta?

How do you understand the Ananda Sutta? How do you place it in relation to the Atman or Anatta (An-atman) doctrine? SN 44.10 Then the wanderer Vacchagotta went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, ...
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1answer
153 views

What is the school of Buddhism that believes in God?

I am a Westerner raised in the Christian faith but have left it in search of a path that fits with my beliefs and philosophy. Over the past few years, I have studied, prayed, researched, etc of the ...
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824 views

Can the practices of 'Art of War' align with Buddhism?

The Art of War by Sun Tzu is a philosophy espoused by military, politics and enterprises. I recent read of The complete Art of War translated by Ralph Sawyer proposes its use in personal relationships ...
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434 views

Dharma without Karma?

I simply ask myself rather one could make sense of the Dharma and apply it without the concepts of rebirth and kamma? Though for me it is my personal approach to the Dharma, which i find to be ...
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143 views

Reconciling anātman and ancestor worship/veneration

Buddhism teaches the concept of anattā or anātman. In short: There is no "soul" or "essence", only "processes" within the framework of the five skandhas. This gives the illusion of the individual ...
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138 views

Rebirth and brain death

I am very new to buddhism, so my understanding is very basic. My previous world views were very materialistic and deterministic. It might not be surprising that the most confusing concept I find so ...
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154 views

Certainty and Skeptical Investigation

I know Buddhism promotes skeptical investigation, and finding things out with a personal conviction about them, i.e. not believing the Buddha on hearsay but rigorous examination. I wonder: how is ...
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How to calculate the number of years in a kalpa?

Wikipedia's Kalpa(aeon) in Buddhism article says, In another simple explanation, there are four different lengths of kalpas. A regular kalpa is approximately 16 million years long (16,798,000 years[...
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653 views

What kind of influence did Cārvāka had on Buddha's philosophy

I have sometimes heard that Siddhartha Gautama's philosophy was influenced by Cārvāka system of philosophy. Is this true, and if true, to what extent has Cārvāka system influenced Buddhism?
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Be like water - but what if i fail

Be like water - but what if i fail i really like the quote "be like water" and wanted to live by it - but the problems was what happenes when i fail - when i cant meditate or more truly too lazy ...
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How can the theory of emptiness be true and yet the self still transmigrates and takes rebirth?

The Theory of "Emptiness" is the concept that all phenomenon are empty of inherent existence. Something has the illusion of existence when the right causes and conditions arise. Example: there is no ...
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323 views

Is an 'Existential Crisis' a necessary condition to start on the path of Dhamma?

The path of Dhamma is a journey towards the end of all suffering through the attainment of Nibbana. The Buddha set out to find the cure for human suffering, but there are so many people around us ...
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Did the Buddha ever refute the view of “extreme metaphysical nihilism” e.g. a view that “nothing is real”?

Important note: I am only using the word "real" only in the sense of meaning "exists and is not an illusion". I am defining "extreme metaphysical nihilism" as the belief that "nothing is real". I ...
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282 views

Critique on Kalama Sutta: Is Buddhism bad for Buddhism?

Kalama Sutta is a key part of the Buddhist teaching that tells you to question everything, not to blindly follow any dogma or teacher. This is one of the features that make this religion/philosophy so ...
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214 views

Did the Buddha according to the suttas mean anything else by the word “self” beyond simply the aspect of control/power?

It looks like according to [the Anatta-lakkhana Sutta][1] one aspect that is considered "self" by the Buddha is power or control. Why did he use the word "self" instead of just "complete control/power"...
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244 views

Schopenhauer’s inexplicable disturbance in the heavenly calm of Nirvana?

Arthur Schopenhauer on his famed work titled “On the suffering of the world” relate as quoted below as to how he think Buddhism's doctrine describe how the world of suffering came into being. Are ...
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304 views

How would Buddhist monks organize countries and the world?

I can't help myself not to find Buddhism utopic. A concept that can only exist for a small group of people. What is the long term plan of the Buddhism? How would Buddhist monks organize countries, ...
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818 views

Do Buddhists think other religions are wrong?

I appreciate that religion can be many things but I want to consider the more soteriological aspects of religion. If we can take as a premise that religions including Buddhism have a strong concern ...
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826 views

What is happiness?

Please don't tell book answer Please don't tell Buddhist explain Please give answers from your true experience Buying car is happiness ? Buying bike is happiness ? Buying home is happiness? Achieving ...
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What is actually Nirvana — what are some Tripitaka sources?

What do you know about the Nirvana? Most of this community people are from all around the world, and may have different teachers, and level of knowledge may vary. A brief explanation, with reference ...
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What exactly is svabhava?

What exactly is svabhāva in Nagarjuna's Madhyamaka? It is translated as inherent nature or inherent existence or inherent substance. But what does that really mean? Does it carry the same meaning as ...
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133 views

Awakened Great Zen Master Seung Sahn - is it possible he lost the state of Nibbana?

From my understanding of awakening (and also according to answers here like Is it possible to become UNenlightened?), it is an irreversible process. It makes sense in theory as, once one awakens, ...
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470 views

How does big bang happen in terms of Buddhism?

Want to know about big bang in terms of Buddhism point of view
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121 views

How is one supposed to be compassionate and 100% free of suffering while others are suffering?

How is this possible besides if one simply doesn't mind if others are suffering? But if one truly doesn't mind whether others are suffering or not isn't that a lack of compassion? Is one supposed to ...
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551 views

Why does one suffer because of ignorance if ignorance is unintentional?

It makes no sense that a person would knowingly choose to be ignorant of what causes them suffering, yet people suffer for "their" ignorance anyway. How is a person supposed to "freely/willingly ...
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Interdependence in regards to myself and the universe

As I was meditating this morning I asked myself the question, "If I am destroyed would the universe also be destroyed?". I answered, "No." Then I asked, "If the universe was destroyed, would I be ...
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350 views

How to stop comparing oneself with others?

I'm wondering how Buddhism deals with the comparison of oneself with others, and I'm specifically thinking in terms of accomplishments. For example, I have usually had some success in art fields in my ...
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83 views

Life Duration and Rebirth

Did Buddha speak about the duration of lives in any way that related it to where one currently stands on the path? For example: "When one is closer to enlightenment, one will have shorter lives ...
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363 views

Did Manjushri, Vajrassatva, Avalokiteshvara live?

Did Manjushri, Vajrassatva or Avalokiteshvara live? Are Manjushri, Vajrassatva or Avalokiteshvara manifestations or special names of Buddhas or Bodhisattva?
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114 views

Does the Buddha speak of the nature of time, vis-à-vis “past,” “future,” and “present?”

Physics shows that what we percieve to be the unidirectional arrow of time is an illusion; that time doesn't necessary "flow" in any direction, and that the concepts of past and present are ultimately ...
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137 views

Is Buddhism Free will or Determinism

What is the position of Buddhism in regards to free will and Determinism? What would be the correct position of Buddhism and could you use an analogy to describe to me the correct view of Buddhism ...
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123 views

What are false unchanging entities?

I am having trouble with the concept of "unchanging entities which exist on their own". Attachment to the false view of self means belief in the presence of unchanging entities which exist on their ...
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Mutually Exclusive Approaches

I had begun writing a question, but it was so long I needed to re-frame it simply in fewer words. The basic theme of my question was: aren't some Buddhist techniques mutually exclusive? The simplest ...
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757 views

In Buddhism, is Escapism seen as a bad thing to take part in?

In general in Buddhism, is escapism seen as a bad "movement" to involve one's self in? I have seen many posts on SE about separating one's self from one's body, or getting rid of desire, so; would ...
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78 views

Does the Pali Canon say anything about duty to siblings?

A number of Suttas make very clear the practitioner's duty to his/her parents. Does the Pali Canon say anything about duty to siblings? Thank you