Questions tagged [theravada]

The oldest of the two big branches in Buddhism. Theravada tries to follow the original teachings of Gautama Buddha as closely as possible

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61
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16answers
7k views

Is rebirth a delusional belief?

I find it difficult to assign a meaning to the word 'rebirth'. Here are some hints that rebirth might not be real: Views regarding one's past and future existence are included in the "62 false ...
19
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5answers
2k views

What is the attitude toward homosexuality in Buddhism?

I am specifically interested in the attitude of Theravadan Buddhism toward homosexuality (if it has one at all.) I don't recall ever seeing any references to homosexuality in the suttas...I do recall ...
16
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5answers
792 views

Caught between two worlds

Hi my Name is Tobias and I am 31 years old. Of course there is a personal story behind my question and a lot of causes and conditions that led to my current situation but in brief the question goes ...
15
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10answers
2k views

Can you attain stream entry without meditation?

Venerable sir, Lately I have been wondering if there is a proper technique that can be used in order to attain stream entry rather than meditating. I have a few experiences with loving kindness ...
14
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11answers
47k views

What is the meaning behind different robe colors?

I have seen the same monk in two different color robes and am wondering why. They were dark red and of course orange. Ihave also seen brown, but that was zen, and if any other colors have relevance i ...
13
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6answers
2k views

Emotional Support without God in Theravada

In religions with God, the believer or devotee can call on God for help during distress, pray to God to seek emotional relief, find a virtual shoulder to cry on and sing God's praises or glories for ...
13
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4answers
2k views

Why did the Buddha suffer before he died?

I understand that the Buddha became severely ill prior to his death as a result of eating bad food. I also was under the impression that perfectly enlightened beings have obliterated, or rendered ...
13
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5answers
2k views

What teachings do all schools of Buddhism share?

Among the many schools and traditions, what core teachings are shared by all Buddhists?
13
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3answers
1k views

What is the life of a monk really like?

I am curious to know a little bit more about the day-to-day life of Theravada buddhist monks. I am drawn to the idea of ordaining, but I fear this is only because I have romanticized the buddhist monk'...
12
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5answers
2k views

Is there a story or a mentioning about masturbation in the Buddhist teachings?

Is masturbation wrong? In what exact way is it wrong? I just need to know if the act of masturbation is wrong. This may include watching nudity while masturbating. Even though it's an addiction, I was ...
12
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4answers
2k views

Homeless but not a monk

Is it frowned upon in Buddhism to undertake homelessness without ordination? Let us presume that part of this homelessness also includes a focus on meditation, with mind and body able to work for ...
12
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1answer
614 views

Why would anyone ever want to go to the heavens?

References to a rebirth in the heavenly realms seems to be viewed in a positive light in Buddhism. It's easy to see why it would be considered more favorable than a rebirth in the hell realms of ...
12
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1answer
337 views

How does Dating work in Buddhism

What does the Buddha say about dating, in general? This is a fairly open-ended question, and any scriptural references would help. I would have lustful thoughts when I look at a pretty girl (though I ...
11
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3answers
590 views

Buddhist (Theravada) cure for “Insecurity”?

While the Pali scriptures address (or at least reference) a number of specific sufferings that a human being can be subject to (Jealousy, Anger, Fear, etc.), do any of the teachings deal with the ...
11
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6answers
370 views

How to address wrong view

Did the Buddha give any teachings on how to deal with individuals spreading wrong view? If someone is expounding their beliefs in a public forum under the guise of the Buddha's teaching, given the ...
11
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8answers
1k views

Learning materials for Dependent Origination (Paṭiccasamuppāda) in Theravada Buddhism

I am listening through the talks and guided meditations from the retreat at Amaravati Just One More: Dependent Origination and the Cycles of Addiction Retreat, where there are a number of references ...
11
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5answers
357 views

Vipassana on arupa worlds

S. N. Goenka in Why Vedana and What is Vedana? says: It is clear that vedana as a part of the nama that is firmly rooted in kaya is what the Buddha wanted us to focus on when he talked about ...
11
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1answer
620 views

Buddhism in ancient Arabic regions

In the age of king "Asoka", the expansion of Buddhism reached Arabic countries. Does anybody know what those countries are called now? Can anyone provide details about what happened to those places / ...
10
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9answers
2k views

miscarriage and abortion

3 years back i had to face with an relationships Problem with my ex boy friend and at that time i was pregnant. I had to abort my child at that time as a result of those problems. Now i am married ...
10
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6answers
5k views

Why the Buddha didn't originally allow ordination of women

Is it true that the Buddha didn't allow women in the Sangha? If this is true then why is that?
10
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2answers
2k views

How should a married person get ordained in Theravada Buddhism?

Can a married person who does not have children ordain if he has the consent of his parents? Does his wife has to give permission? How much contact should he keep with his wife after he ordains?
10
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4answers
2k views

How to be mindful while studying?

I am a science student at an university and I practise mindfulness in the Mahasi tradition. My question is, how can I be mindful while studying? This is a very important question for me since most of ...
9
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6answers
804 views

Are there Theravada meditation retreats that allow one to work for room and board?

Practicing meditation in South Mississippi, USA, without easy access to a sangha or teacher, and reading Buddhist literature (primarily Theravadan), I feel a need to attend a week to ten day ...
9
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4answers
990 views

Buddhist path X Romantic Relationships and Sons

First of all I will apologize because it will be hard to put that as a clear and simple question. Once a person decides to enter the Buddhist path, it becomes clear that one should avoid engaging in ...
9
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6answers
2k views

Trouble understanding “sensual misconduct”

Is this phrase analogous to over-indulgence in sense pleasures, or is indulgence in any sense pleasure at any level considered a form of misconduct? Thankya
9
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6answers
977 views

Usefulness of attending a Thai temple in the United States

So I've been a Buddhist since around 2007, but I've never been to a temple. I don't think I've ever actually met another Buddhist. I just go by what I read in Bodhi's translations and Thanissaro's ...
9
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3answers
456 views

Consciousness in Nibbana

In the Abhidhamma, it makes mention to 89 and 121 states of consciousness. It says there are four ultimate realities namely Consciousness Mental Factors Matter Nibbana. The first three are ...
9
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7answers
1k views

How compatible are (Theravada) Buddhism and the Western life?

There are a lot of people practicing their religion at home (to some extent). But how practical is that for a Buddhist? My question came boiling up when a family-member said that I ultimately have to ...
9
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6answers
5k views

Proper way to address a bhikkhu?

I have seen many ways to address a bhikkhu, and I'm wondering about the proper way to address a bhikkhu, in writing?
9
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4answers
2k views

What is taught about Buddha nature in Theravada Buddhism?

Reference: http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/snapshot02.htm The very last row talks about Buddha Nature. According to this page, Buddha Nature is not taught in Theravada Buddhism, and to my ...
9
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7answers
958 views

What if there was no one to offer food to monastics?

This is a questions that often comes up when I visit study groups, particularly when the subject of everyone practicing like a monk/nun comes up. Wouldn't monastics be allowed to farm-just enough for ...
9
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2answers
861 views

What is the difference between a cula sotapanna and 'faith follower' ?

I have read in many places about Cula Sotapanna or 'Lesser Sotapanna' and 'Faith Follower'. Are they the same or different? Do both of them attain to Sotapatti phala in the same lifetime?
9
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1answer
256 views

What does it mean to 'advert' to the factors of jhana after emerging from jhana?

I think this all comes from the Visudhimagga's explanation of jhana. I'm not sure there's any references to a term similar to "advert" in the Canon, but I keep running into the term advert without any ...
8
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4answers
4k views

Philosophical and Doctrinal Differences between Theravada and Zen, and its effects

The difference between Theravada and Zen may be like night and day. I favour Zen over Chinese Mahayana because I don't quite prefer the Pure Land beliefs. Hence, I want to compare these two. I ...
8
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3answers
2k views

Buddhist monk education level

I saw that many of the western monks like Ajahn Brahm, Ajahn Shumedho, Ajahn Sucitto etc. have an university degree. I'm 24 years old from Switzerland and I only finished secondary school with 15 ...
8
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3answers
2k views

Intuition in Buddhism

I was told that intuition is not to be cultivated in Buddhism. Intuition is blind and not to be followed. Following something blind can be quite dangerous. At the same time, there is a book called '...
8
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3answers
762 views

Theravada Buddhism and Art

In Mahayana Buddhism we can see various artistic expressions: Thangka and Songs of Milarepa in Tibetan Buddhism, Chinese and Japanese art also were influenced heavily by Buddhism. Is there any forms ...
8
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9answers
355 views

Does sutta recitation actually entail understanding of the text?

I'm particularly interested in Chinese morning and evening service Tibetan sadhanas that a monk recites every day Theravada Pali suttas and chants Are these read in modern times by and to an ...
8
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5answers
212 views

Did the Buddha ever delve on the dangers of one's own spirtual achievements feeding the ego?

This question came up when I really thought back on both my and many others' spiritual journey. In the New Age community, especially, the sense of viewing things as illusions and making progress in ...
8
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4answers
985 views

What is the intermediate state before birth (Gandhabba)?

What is the intermediate state before birth ("Gandhabba"), mentioned in some Buddhist traditions? I have only heard the word so I can't explain the question any further. I would like a detailed ...
8
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3answers
260 views

A question on morality

As I understand it, we carry out generous and selfless deeds for the purpose of acquiring positive kamma and/or promoting our spiritual quest. However, this seems like a form of greed, one of the ...
8
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2answers
207 views

Discernment vs. judgement in the labeling meditation

To watch the mind, as far as I understand, is to simply watch the mind without judging it. But there is a method, which teaches us to note sad when we are sad, dislike when we dislike something, happy ...
8
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3answers
679 views

Is a Theravada Buddhist permitted/able to take a Bodhisattva vow?

This is a sister question to this one. Suppose a Theravada practitioner decided they wanted to take a Bodhisattva vow, could they (and remain Theravadin)? I guess there are a few of components to ...
8
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3answers
618 views

What happens if a monk is called for jury duty?

Is it possible for a monk to be called for jury duty in the U.S.A.? If so, does the Buddhist religion prevent them from taking part int he judicial process, as it involves passing judgment on others? ...
7
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6answers
728 views

Why is contributing to the market demand for meat not wrong?

According to this article by Ven. Dhammavuddho Thero: Majjhima Nikaya 55 ..... The Buddha denied this, adding “Jivaka, I say that there are three instances in which meat should not be eaten: ...
7
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7answers
412 views

How to find the right Dhamma teacher

The practice of Buddhism, as with any other spiritual development, largely relies on the guidance of a good master. With the large variety of traditions and practices out there, how should one go ...
7
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5answers
407 views

Is there a better term than Hinayana?

I'm aware that using the term Hinayana isn't ideal as it has derogatory undertones - being coined by the Mahayana school to differentiate themselves from what had gone on before. The implication being ...
7
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7answers
4k views

Can anyone explain Sanskara / Sankara indepth?

Can someone provide a canonical explanation to Sanskara/Sankara? I appreciate if you can provide some sources,Suttras/Suttas so that i can expand my knowledge.
7
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4answers
2k views

Can a lay person become an Arahant according to the Suttas?

I have already seen different answers to that question, but I don't know which one is based on the suttas. I would appreciate the source of the answer for this specific topic. If you think the ...
7
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2answers
1k views

Are there any cultural or religious guidelines for Buddhist tattoos?

I've notice people on Instagram are getting tattoos of Mahakala and other Buddhist deities. Are there any cultural or religious guidelines to consider when getting a tattoo of a Dharmapala or any ...