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7
votes
9answers
1k views

What tenets must a person accept to be a Buddhist?

I'm curious what minimal tenets a person must accept in order to be considered a Buddhist. As an example of the type of answer I'm looking for, I'll give you the minimal tenets of Christianity as I ...
12
votes
5answers
7k views

Is there any benefit in learning Pali or Sanskrit?

Much of the Theravadan scriptures are written in Pali, so are a lot manuscripts written in Sanskrit, but is there any benefit in learning these languages while the Canon is already translated in other ...
4
votes
2answers
867 views

Interacting with monks in Thailand

I'm planning to visit Thailand, so I would like to know some simple local "rules" to interact with monks respecting Theravada tradition, I want to avoid behaving like a tourist that (not intentionaly) ...
12
votes
6answers
766 views

Is technology making us less mindful?

In terms of availability of technology, the modern world is very different from the world in which Buddhism arose, and the Buddhist suttas were written As a result, these days, people do things ...
7
votes
3answers
338 views

What can go wrong in Mindfulness Therapy as used in Clinics?

I just stumbled across the article Mindfulness therapy comes at a high price for some, say experts. Even when mindfulness is practiced correctly, side effects may occur, like feeling lost or ...
67
votes
20answers
8k 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 ...
6
votes
4answers
572 views

Is curiosity, for non Dhamma subjects, a bad thing?

Curiosity can lead to desire (for knowing something), attachment and therefore suffering. Also, questions based on pure curiosity were left unaswered by the Buddha On the other hand, curiosity is ...
3
votes
3answers
281 views

Is there a finite amount of beings?

According to the Buddhist teachings all beings are subject to Samsara and one can escape Samsara as he finds enlightenment. But if all beings were ultimately to be reborn, with exception of those ...
2
votes
3answers
160 views

Was the London Buddhist Society the first Western Sangha?

Christmas Humphreys founded the London Buddhist society in 1924. Would this have been the first sangha in the West? Wikipedia says of it The Buddhist Society of London is one of the oldest Buddhist ...
9
votes
8answers
1k views

Is it possible to experience powerful sensations, such as orgasm, without getting attached to it?

I used orgasm as an example because it is usually the strongest sensation one can feel due to everything involved and all the chemistry released in the body. Also, I would say that sexual activity ...
7
votes
3answers
391 views

Within Tibetan Buddhism, are the Lamas always the same “soul”?

It's my understanding that the belief in Tibetan Buddhism is that when a Lama is reborn he (not meaning to be sexist, but I know of no female Lamas - please let me know if I'm wrong) becomes that same ...
6
votes
2answers
182 views

Why mara wants to distract

These davas are always against Buddha, his Dhamma and those who are practicing. Since they also exist in planes of existence, why do they bother others trying to liberate themselves? They themselves ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Is Anapanasati considered Samatha?

I'm new to Buddhism, and I have some trouble understanding some core aspects on meditation. Is Anapanasati considered Samatha or Vipassana?
12
votes
4answers
459 views

Mindfulness in Everyday Activity

I have been practicing meditation, reading and listening to Buddhist teachings and I undertake the five precepts for about year now. This is the first time that I actually ask a question about my ...
4
votes
2answers
700 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?
8
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the significance of Commentaries (Atthakatha) to the Suttas?

In some traditions commentaries are inherent in the daily sermons and books written by monks. But I've noticed that most of the commentaries are not available digitally in English compared to the ...
8
votes
8answers
2k views

Why do Buddhists believe that the Buddha was enlightened, despite that he claimed it himself?

All the answers to the question about the living enlightened people suggest that talking about one's enlightenment is taboo, so if somebody claims to be enlightened, he probably is not. Why doesn't ...
2
votes
1answer
225 views

Is Sampajañña and Dhamma vicaya related?

Does Sampajañña and Dhamma vicaya have an overlap. What is the relationship between the two? What is the differences? Is Sampajañña a result of dhamma vicaya? Do you need Sampajañña for dhamma vicaya?
4
votes
1answer
296 views

How is Recollection of peace (upasamānussati) practiced?

Out of the 10 recollections in the 40 Kammaṭṭhāna how is upasamānussati practiced to the level of Jhana?
25
votes
11answers
44k views

Any advice on leg numbing during sitting?

It happens at about 20 minutes every time lately... either in half lotus (a traditional position that i would like to honor), or with one leg laying in front of the other, or indian style... doesnt ...
9
votes
10answers
7k views

How much is the minimal time for practicing Vipassana in daily life for achieving better mindfulness?

How much is the minimal time for practicing Vipassana in daily life for achieving better mindfulness? Is 30 minutes enough? I ask this question because I currently have some trouble being mindful, ...
3
votes
2answers
73 views

Does pasteurization count as cooking in prep of juices for after noon?

If I were to have, lets say, a V8 after noon, and it was not cooked... but was pasteurized (heated at a high temp which is considered by the food industry to not be a temperature sufficient to cause ...
3
votes
2answers
994 views

is chocolate an allowable after noon?

i recently went to a meeting with some bhikkhus, and they served the monks a small dish with butter slices and little chocolate squares... i think it was dark chocolate if that matters. So anyway, i ...
3
votes
3answers
194 views

Did Buddhism ever go through a period of relatively high violence?

Catholicism/Christianity had the dark ages and the inquisition in which 'heretics' were prosecuted with violence. One could claim that Islam is currently in a period of high violence. Did Buddhism ...
7
votes
6answers
6k views

Why is Buddhism followed mainly outside of India when it originated there?

India is the original land of Buddhism, but it is followed/practiced more outside its country of birth. Are there any reasons for this?
14
votes
3answers
4k views

Was Vipassana discovered by the Buddha (Siddhartha)?

I read somewhere that samatha (and jhana) was discovered by the Buddha, but how about vipassana? Is there any evidence either way (i.e. suttas)? The reason I'm asking is because I am more proficient ...
6
votes
3answers
450 views

Meditation techniques for beginners?

As a beginning meditator, the techniques I typically use are: Counting breaths, restarting at 10 (learned in Japan). Envisioning, with warm feelings, all of my friends and family around me in a large ...
0
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the difference between Karma and Sanskara

Karma and Sanskara seam to be very much related. How are they related and how are they different.
54
votes
13answers
12k 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
411 views

Nuns and ordination

I see that in some theravdan traditions woman cannot fully ordain (some thai traditions). But in some burmese and tibetan traditions they can. From what I understand it is because of the break in ...
5
votes
6answers
2k views

Was the Buddha an arahant?

According to Theravadan Buddhism would the Buddha have been considered an arahant? Is this word synonymous with the title 'the Buddha' or does being the Buddha mean something over and above being an ...
9
votes
4answers
17k views

What language did the Buddha speak?

Do we know, or have a good idea, what language the historical Buddha (Siddhārtha Gautama) spoke. I've just assumed it is Pali but a moment's thought tells me this is probably wrong since the Pali ...
3
votes
3answers
192 views

Are there communities of practicing secular Buddhists?

Religious groups are typically comprised of communities of practitioners who visit the temple/church a couple of times a week and practice together. Is this true of secular Buddhism? If so, Where ...
10
votes
9answers
11k views

Physical Exercise as a Monk?

Is a monk allowed to exercise the body in order to keep it fit and healthy? I reckon both 'healthy' and 'fit' as attachments, but is there an overall rule/teaching that explains this?
3
votes
1answer
374 views

What is a Tao Buddhist?

This answer refers to a Tao Buddhist. I've never heard of this term. Is a a definite religious movement or is it just a colloquial term that refers to someone who holds both view simultaneously? In ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is Buddhism less evangelical than Christianity?

Currently when I walk to work I frequently pass Christians of various denominations passing out free books and talking to passers by. I have never heard of a Buddhist group doing the same. I think it ...
3
votes
1answer
172 views

Ledi Sayadaw Raised a Few Points in Contrary to the Commentaries. What are They?

Initially some of the writings of Ledi Sayadaw were considered to be controversial and they differed from the commentaries. What were the points that differed?
5
votes
1answer
3k views

In Vipassana, what's the difference between 1st and 2nd “knowledge of dissolution” (paṭhama- & dutiya- bhanga-ñāṇa)

One of the main station of insight before stream entry is bhanga-ñāṇa. In some explanations this seems to be subdivided further into 1st (paṭhama) and 2nd (dutiya) bhanga-ñāṇa ("knowledge of ...
1
vote
2answers
87 views

Will parents full of Dhamma attract good minds for their babies?

Is it more likely that a mind with more positive Kamma and closer to the Dhamma will reborn as a son of a couple that follows the Dhmma? Is there like an attraction due to the Dhamma? There is a ...
10
votes
8answers
5k views

Is gender a result of Kamma?

Are the genders male/female a result of Kamma, or is it associated with it in any way?
2
votes
2answers
293 views

Might immediate retaliation or reaction inhibit future bad kamma?

If someone hits you and you even the score, purely to HELP them avoid future bad kamma (like if your intention is purely that... you want to neutralize their bad kamma... not an excuse, no ...
0
votes
1answer
113 views

Beautiful Balloons for Buddha

Can someone explain the tradition of releasing balloons with candles inside for Buddha? What is the meaning? Is it a Theravada or a Mahayana tradition? When and why people do it?
5
votes
3answers
176 views

How can one overcome agitation developed by not sitting regularly?

This one is for the lay meditators. Although i think there is a component of sloth and torpor involved in the situation. There are other factors too. At times for me breakage of a sila makes it hard ...
5
votes
4answers
7k views

What is Thögal?

Recently I came across a progressive series of workshops working out of the Kusum Rangshar (by Shardza Tashi Gyaltsen) where one of the classes revolved around a practice called Thögal (ཐོད་རྒལ་). ...
1
vote
3answers
1k views

Mixing Buddhism with other religions [closed]

The predominant opinion of people with a lot of experience with practising Buddhism seems to be that there are irreconcilable gaps between Buddhism and Christianity and that it makes no sense to be a ...
2
votes
2answers
107 views

First Buddhist text translated into a Western language

As a follow-up to another question: What was the first Buddhist text to be translated into a Western language? (That probably means French or Latin, but other options are also possible) When was it ...
3
votes
5answers
1k views

What was the first Buddhist text to be translated into English?

What was the first Buddhist text to be translated into English? When was it translated and by whom? Was it reasonably available to those interested and did it have much of an impact within academic ...
2
votes
2answers
90 views

Is it right, according to the Vinaya, to charge for Dhamma classes? (I'm not talking about donations, but a fixed amount per class one has to pay)

There is a Buddhist Centre close to me that charges circa USD8.00 for Dhamma talks, in one hand I don't like the idea of any religion charging people because poor people will not be able to ...
3
votes
1answer
238 views

What do we know about the historic Padmasambhava?

I had heard Padmasambhava referred to as a semi-mythic figure. Some of his reputed activities would fit a mythic character. However to what extent is he also a historical figure. What do we know about ...
4
votes
3answers
146 views

Ordination and support from parents

If one intends to ordain, say in Thailand, and one lives in India - would it be right/moral to ask support from one's parents (since one is not yet ready/able to support oneself)?

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