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13
votes
4answers
1k views

How are 'conceit' and 'identity-view' not the same?

Looking at the Lists of fetters I see "conceit" and "identity view" listed separately ... and the four stages of enlightenment say that identity view will be abandoned (in the first stage) before ...
32
votes
15answers
3k views

How to explain what Buddhism is?

My mother and I come from a non-Buddhist culture/background/society/country/family. At one point when I had an opportunity to explain to her what Buddhism is, I was doing well (i.e. she was listening ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Any authentic sutta from any tradition that gives guidance on what kind of partner to choose?

Any authentic sutta or part of sutta from any tradition that gives guidance on what kind of sexual relationship partner to choose? I'm thinking the Vimalikirti sutra should say something about such ...
11
votes
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 ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

What is effluent?

The Brahmana Sutta, for example, mentions "effluent": So it is with an arahant whose mental effluents are ended ... Or in Adhimutta, One gone to the far shore without clinging without ...
3
votes
11answers
653 views

How is it wrong to believe that a self exists, or that it doesn't?

the one place where the Buddha was asked point-blank whether or not there was a self, he refused to answer. When later asked why, he said that to hold either that there is a self or that there is ...
14
votes
8answers
2k views

Chronological or other sequence for beginners

At least one of the "introductions to Buddhism" that I read included elements from, some biography of, the life of the Buddha, including: Early life Searching for enlightenment Sermon at Benares (a.k....
61
votes
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 ...
14
votes
6answers
2k views

What are examples of identity-view?

Identity view (sakkāya-diṭṭhi) is the first of the ten fetters. The "eradication" of identity-view is important towards enlightenment. Presumably, "eradication of identity-view" is more than simply ...
13
votes
11answers
11k views

What is the precise meaning of anatta?

This is focusing in on one specific aspect of what was asked here: What are the three marks of existence? I often hear "anatta" explained as being an expression of the non-existence of the self. ...
51
votes
13answers
11k views

Can the Buddha ever be a woman?

Is it true that the Buddha will never be a woman? If so, why is this? To be specific, I am particularly asking whether or not the Buddha itself can be female. I am not asking whether a woman can ...
13
votes
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?
8
votes
1answer
4k views

What is meant by Namu Amida Butsu and also Nam-myoho-renge-kyo?

In two schools of Buddhism, an important part of the practice is the repetition of special mantras which sound like simple expressions of honor or gratitude to those of us outside of the sects, but ...
14
votes
2answers
942 views

English (or other European) translations of Pali Canon

Perhaps this should be closed as a 'shopping' question, but maybe translations take a long time to make and therefore there are not too many of them, and they don't go out of date quickly. The ...
6
votes
3answers
370 views

Pāramitāyāna and Tantrayāna

Wikipedia includes this (unreferenced) sentence: According to the perspective of Tibetan Buddhism, Mahāyāna practitioners have the choice of two practice paths: the path of perfection (Sanskrit: ...
5
votes
12answers
335 views

List of book recommendations

For the reasons explained here, can you recommend one or more books about Buddhism? I suggest a format like, Title of Book by Name of Author A summary of what's in the book, recommended for ...
7
votes
6answers
738 views

Why do the Noble Truths talk about 'craving', instead of about 'attachment'?

Further to these comments, why do the Noble Truths talk about 'craving', specifically, instead of about 'attachment'? Wouldn't they make as much sense, or even make more sense, if they identified ...
4
votes
4answers
436 views

Appamāda - What is it? How to practise it? Benefits?

In this video, Ven. Yuttadhammo Bhikkhu says that the whole of the Buddhist teachings could be summarized as Appamāda (heedfulness), at the risk of oversimplification. In the Mahaparinibbana Sutta (...
9
votes
4answers
727 views

Why is the Buddha described as trackless?

In the Dhammapada, within the Buddhavagga section, the Buddha is described as being trackless. By what track can you trace that trackless Buddha of limitless range, whose victory nothing can undo,...
31
votes
12answers
14k views

How does stream entry occur?

When a person becomes a stream enterer/Sotapanna, I understand they no longer have the first 3 fetters of belief in a self, doubts about the Buddha, his teachings or the noble sangha, or attachments ...
7
votes
6answers
738 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: ...
44
votes
17answers
36k views

If there is no soul, how can there be rebirth?

Anatta is often described as "not-self" which I understand to mean that our identities are illusions. But it's also described as "soullessness" which I think implies that there is no mind other than ...
17
votes
4answers
10k views

How is sexual misconduct explained in regards to the five precepts?

The 3rd precept is: I undertake the training rule to avoid sexual misconduct. How is this precept explained? Marriage is defined differently in different cultures, so are the commonly accepted ...
34
votes
21answers
3k views

Introductory books to Buddhism

I'm looking for some book(s) that are generally regarded as a good introduction to Buddhism. I know very little about Buddhism, having only read one book on it so far (What Makes You Not a Buddhist by ...
4
votes
7answers
1k views

Buddhism and the middle path

I am battling with understanding the concept of the middle path. Having read the many articles available, the concept escapes me especially with a view of self and no-self. My understanding is that ...
7
votes
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.
6
votes
7answers
1k views

Experiencing physical pain

What advice (or techniques e.g. of meditation) does Buddhism (of any tradition) have for people who experience physical pain (caused by an illness and treated by a doctor)? Or for the people (friends, ...
5
votes
3answers
629 views

Should a person never lie?

If someone would hide from the Nazis and then the Nazis came and asked me if I'm hiding a Jew - should I say "yes" or "no"? When is it ok to lie?
4
votes
2answers
504 views

Time in Buddhism

I read a couple of books on time, yet they all seemed somewhat incomplete, as if it was something simply tagged onto the rebirth / enlightenment doctrine. How important is time in Buddhism, not ...
30
votes
10answers
4k views

Does illegal downloading or viewing of copyright material violate the second precept?

As a kid I used to download a lot of softwares and movies using torrents. Even if something illegal is done, it doesn't necessarily mean that it violates a precept. But can this be considered as ...
14
votes
6answers
2k views

What are the differences/similarities in the concept of faith as used in Buddhism and Christianity?

There is the concept of faith (śraddhā) in Buddhism. There is also the concept of faith found in Christianity. Both concepts have been translated into the English word faith but in what ways are the ...
10
votes
3answers
791 views

What is the Interpretation of Parimukham in the context of Buddhist Meditation?

This seems to have different interpretation and translations? What are the different interpretations and translations and what might be the most correct interpretation according to different line of ...
9
votes
8answers
3k views

What is the difference between Vijñāna, Manas and Citta?

Together they refer to one's mental processes as a whole. Separately, what are they and how are they different?
12
votes
4answers
573 views

What's the value or harm of a literal belief in rebirth?

Whenever I examine the concept of rebirth in Buddhism, I cannot help it but feel great skepticism. To put it in my own clumsy words, we have many fears and one of the greatest is to cease to exist. ...
11
votes
5answers
3k views

Should a Buddhist have Children?

In Buddhism having a rebirth is itself a origin of all the Dukhhas. Doesn't it imply that Buddhist laymen who are married should not have children to stop this cycle of rebirth. This leads to a more ...
5
votes
2answers
561 views

What does Nonduality correspond to in Buddhism?

There is not [was not] a tag for nonduality. Would someone please make a correspondence between nonduality and Buddhism as to "stage" or "attainment", qualifications, or whatever is applicable? EDIT: ...
4
votes
4answers
479 views

Does Theravada Buddhism accept Jataka Stories?

Once in a Dhamma talk I heard a Theravada Monk saying he did not believe in such stories, because some of them contradict the Buddha's teachings (suttas), I don't know if that was his personal opinion ...
35
votes
12answers
37k views

What exactly differentiates Vipassana from Samatha meditation?

What are the key aspects of Vipassana that are not present in Samatha? What is the main difference in the method from a meditator's perspective? Labeling emotions and feelings are part of samatha ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

Have any Buddhist thinkers responded to the critique of the Brahma Sutras?

By far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy, which almost all Hindus nowadays belong to, is the Vedanta school, which is based on an ancient Hindu work called the Brahma Sutras or Vedanta ...
15
votes
7answers
12k views

Why isn't there a Buddhist Bible?

Why is it that Buddhism never compiled a reasonably concise set of canonical texts like the Bible? Buddhism itself has universal beliefs such as the 4 Noble Truths, the Eightfold Path and the notion ...
4
votes
2answers
175 views

Linking Madhyamaka emptiness to Theravada emptiness through papanca

From the different answers that I have received on various questions that I've asked, I have come to the following ideas: According to Mahayana Madhyamaka emptiness (shunyata), all phenomena is empty ...
4
votes
9answers
4k views

What does deathless mean?

The word "deathless" is used sometimes. What does it mean? Are there non-obvious or non-English meanings to the words translated as 'death' and/or 'deathless'? Similarly what does "attaining the ...
3
votes
8answers
4k views

Can a Buddhist own and run a billion dollar business?

China, Japan, Korea, etc. have so many companies and Buddhism is widespread in those areas. My question is: can a Buddhist make the aim of his life to run a billion dollar business?
7
votes
6answers
630 views

Is it me or someone else paying karma for my sins?

According to Buddhism, is it me who is getting punished or rewarded in next life for my deeds in this life?
5
votes
8answers
1k views

If there is no self what or who is it that gets enlightened?

From reading this answer I come to understand that anatta means the lack of a core that can be conceived as self. If there is no permanent self, then who or what gets enlightened?
4
votes
5answers
369 views

Can you criticise or improve Ven. Bodhi's description of Mahayana

Here I summarised, and here I referenced, this little essay by Bhikkhu Bodhi: Dhamma and Non-duality (the first four paragraphs seem to be about Advaita Vedanta, the remainder about "Mahayana Buddhism"...
6
votes
7answers
1k views

How to Study the Suttas?

I practice the Theravada tradition. There are a lot of suttas, and I don't know how to go about studying them. Can I please get some pointers or guidelines on how I can study them? For example, which ...
3
votes
3answers
362 views

Did the Buddha teach the four noble truths to laypeople?

Sometimes I see comments like, "the Buddha never taught the four noble truths to laypeople". Is that so? If so, why didn't he? Aren't the 4NT the best, most succinct and most helpful, part of the ...
2
votes
6answers
225 views

What is the invisible consciousness or consciousness without surface?

From MN 49 (trans. Sujato): Consciousness that is invisible, infinite, radiant all round—that’s what is not within the scope of experience based on earth, water, fire, air, creatures, gods, the ...
13
votes
6answers
1k views

Can the noble eightfold path be followed in its entirety by a lay follower?

Does the noble eightfold path fits a lay life perfectly? Or is there any part of it that cannot be followed/accomplished by a lay buddhist? If that's the case, what part(s) doesn't have fit with lay ...

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