20

No, Nirvana is not the goal of all Buddhists. According to Sakya and Nyingma schools of Tibetan Buddhism, Buddhist liberation methodologies can be divided in three major classes, corresponding to sentient being's mental capacity: students of lower capacity seek pleasant living conditions and personal happiness. For these beings the teaching focuses on ...


19

In one sense he continues just as we do. Once he attained nirvana under the Bodhi tree, the Buddha carried on teaching for another 50 years. It was only on the death of his physical body that he underwent parinirvana, that is to say final release. However this just pushes the question on from nirvana to parinirvana. The question of what happens to an ...


15

I'm pretty sure the belief is not that earthworms become mothers, it's that every earthworm has most likely been your mother at some point in the past, as per the mata sutta (SN 15.14-19): At Savatthi. There the Blessed One said: "From an inconstruable beginning comes transmigration. A beginning point is not evident, though beings hindered by ignorance ...


12

There was no person existing in the 1st place to cease to exist. What you mistake as a person is just the 5 aggregates of clinging. They are just natural processes of causes and effects. Once you attain Nibbana, the causes for continuation of the 5 aggregates are removed. Hence no continuation.


12

There is an existent reference to the similarities between Theravāda & Mahāyāna which I will cite: (I think it also applies to Vajrayāna although I may be wrong in this regard.) Whatever our sects, denominations or systems, as Buddhists we all accept the Buddha as our Master who gave us the Teaching. We all take refuge in the Triple Jewel: ...


11

In the grand scheme of things, ending suffering and with it the endless cycle of rebirth is the ultimate goal of all forms of Buddhism. However, while Theravada Buddhism focusses on personal enlightenment, other forms like Mahayana focus on the Bodhisattva ideal: Postponing enlightenment until all other lifeforms are free from suffering. In the Theravada ...


11

As I understand it, Crab Bucket is correct that this is a question to which an answer is never given. I will contribute some source and try to flesh out this answer a bit: According to the Avyakata Sutta, the Buddha says that holding a viewpoint about what happens to an enlightened one after death is 'anguish' [Pāli: 'vippatisara'] and that well-instructed, ...


10

There are two concepts here. We pass away every moment and arise every minutes. Other is rebirth after death. Rebirth is partly a belief but much of the Dhamma should be realised at experiential level. What is much needed is that at the last moment is that you maintain equanimity so you do not take a new birth. The level of stillness can be achived only by a ...


8

It's, in a way, like comparing apples and oranges. Theravada means teaching of the elders; all it means is taking the Pali tipitaka and commentaries as more or less orthodox, and denying any teaching that contradicts them. Within the Theravada, there are many Zen-like practices, and many practices wholly foreign to Zen. Zen, on the other hand, is I think ...


8

The Pali scriptures describe 4 levels of enlightenment, which equate to 4 levels of Nibbana. The Nakhasikha Sutta states in the 1st level of enlightenment the vast majority of the previous suffering has been ended & extinguished. Many Buddhist practitioners have tasted Nibbana (freedom from suffering). However, I suspect those that have reached the ...


7

No. If your goal is to attain enlightenment you've gotten it all wrong and I would recommend Brad Warner's book, Hardcore Zen. It is much more important to act appropriately. From the book: I'd been doing zazen for for over a decade by then and was pretty miffed that I had yet to reach enlightenment... Let me give you a little background. In a ...


7

Many times, especially when responding to speculative questions, the Buddha announced that he teaches just two things — the universality of suffering and the path to the ending of suffering. That's what Buddhism is all about, no matter which of the many traditions. The Buddha taught the cause of suffering is clinging. This becomes a particular problem when ...


7

This question assumes frame of reference different from the one Buddhism operates in. The point of teachings is to produce a certain state of mind, that will affect your behavior in certain way, that will eventually lead to better results, up to and including Enlightenment for you and the rest of the sentient beings. In this case, the image of mother is ...


6

My mother and I saw a cat today by the side of the road, which had probably been hit by a car. Its back legs were outstretched, it didn't walk, I guessed its lower back was broken. It miaowed to us. We went to find the owner of the nearby house, I told him that I had the regret to inform him that etc., he said that it sounded like his cat and we went to ...


5

As well as the list which is quoted in Unrul3r's answer there are, also, three other lists included on Wikipedia's Basic points unifying Theravāda and Mahāyāna article. A less canonical list was written by Christmas Humphreys, In 1945 he drafted the Twelve Principles of Buddhism for which he obtained the approval of all the Buddhist sects in Japan (...


5

To answer this question accurately is very difficult if you are not a scientist but often people have accidents that results in them being in a coma for an extended period, where their physical body is alive but their mind is not conscious. If the mind is not conscious at all here then that physical body is living without mind (however from a Buddhist ...


5

This article, Four Dharma Seals, says: As suffering is not an inherent aspect of existence sometimes the second seal is omitted to make Three Dharma Seals. From that I get the impression that, The tilakkhaṇa is the earliest doctrine (in the Pali canon) Later someone added nirvana to that list (making the four Dharma seals) Then, someone decided that if ...


5

The Three Dharma Seals in an error of interpretation by Thích Nhất Hạnh based on an error of interpretation by the majority of Buddhist commentators and translators. It is an example of when an error is made based on accepting an existing error rather than refuting an existing error. Thích Nhất Hạnh has correctly stated that "suffering" is not an inherent ...


4

It's similar to going to a funeral, seeing the dead body and realizing that your turn is coming too. Jealousy is a subset of aversion. Aversion is 1 of the 3 evil roots that causes suffering. So if you realized that and got rid of your jealousy, that's inline with Buddhist insight.


4

I think this question has a great potential for misunderstanding the concept of Nibbana. Why is it important to know? There is no way to know if Nibbana is just another silly concept like God except you have experienced what this word is pointing to. If there is the claim that somebody else is 'enlightened' it doesn't really change the fact that you simply ...


3

Good question. My view is 'kilesa' is the general or broad term referring the mental impurities or toxins. Therefore, anusaya (underlying tendencies) are kilesa; asava (outflows) are kilesa; hindrances (nirvarana) are kilesa; and the various forms of tanha (craving), attachment & becoming (bhava) are kilesa. The most subtle level of kilesa is ...


3

The Buddha in the Suttas taught not-self, not no self. In the Maha-Nidana Sutta, the Buddha speaks of not-self. Here is what he says about people who say feelings are the Self: "Now, one who says, 'Feeling is my self,' should be addressed as follows: 'There are these three feelings, my friend — feelings of pleasure, feelings of pain, and feelings of ...


3

Would you characterize belief in rebirth as a central component of Buddhism? In short, I personally don't. I think the central component depends on what you want to achieve and what is the best approach for you to practice Buddhism. As a Buddhist of Chinese Mahayana influence, I personally do not consider belief in rebirth (in the context of rebirth after ...


3

Simple answer to your two questions Is Nirvana a goal which every Buddhist must achieve? Yes. Ending the suffering is the ultimate goal of a true budhist Is there any other things more important than attaining Nirvana? No To answer this more, All budha's sutta and all teachings point to how to attain nibbana nothing else. In order to attain nibbana only ...


3

There are several questions brought up here. One I see you asking: is the entire teaching of Buddha- with everything it has to offer -- is a true explanation of reality or is it merely a useful fiction, an expedient mean for achieving a goal (liberation from suffering)? To me the answer is clear. Any explanation of reality is a conceptual model. Every ...


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