Of course, I can't speak for all modern-day Buddhists, but for myself, those that I have learned from, and those that I have known, we believe that Mara is the metaphorical personification of the forces that oppose enlightenment. I've not met any Buddhist who believes that Mara is a literal personal being.
There are 5 kinds of Maras in Buddhism.
Khandha Māra - The five aggregates of clinging
Kilesa Māra - The defilements
Abhisankhāra Māra - The Karmic force
Maccu Māra - The death itself
Devaputta Māra - The god Mara who leads a faction in the Paranimmita-Vasavatti heaven.
There are 5 kinds of Maras. The fifth is Devaputta Mara who is an actual being(god) who controls a portion of the paranimmita-vasavatti heaven. But he is not similar to the Satan concept in Christianity. Mara is not an eternal being. Unlike Satan, Mara is not against doing good deeds. He at times encourages beings to do good deeds and prolong their Samsara. ...
In my tradition, the Shambhala line of teachings by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, ascending to Jamgon Kongtrul and ultimately Milarepa, the "spiritual" and the "material" phenomena are understood to be two narrative explanations of the same underlying reality. So when we talk about supernatural stuff like spirits etc. we always refer to phenomena that actually ...
Mara is seen as a tempter in some Buddhist texts perhaps personifying cravings and hindrances on the path. Perhaps I'll just highlight two references to Mara I am familiar with that point to this
The Enlightenment of the Buddha
During the Buddha's enlightenment Mara came to question, tempt and generally shake Siddhartha's (soon to be Buddha) confidence - ...
Corrupted officials: Dhanañjani Sutta
"What do you think, Dhanañjanin? There is the case where a certain
person, for the sake of his wife & children ... his slaves & workers
... his friends & companions ... his kinsmen & relatives ... his
guests ... his departed ancestors ... the devatas ... the king, does
what is unrighteous, does ...
It's not always as clear as 'good' or 'evil'. Angry, vengeful spirits also exist in forms of Buddhism. Sometimes also seen as protectors, they can be a source of controversy.
More common is one's own belief in (or, more practically, fear of) something that is indefinitely, and irreparably, sinister or evil. We subscribe to all sorts of interesting notions ...
In mainland Southeast Asia, indigenous spirits have been incorporated to a greater or lesser degree into Buddhist belief systems. I believe this is known as syncretism. In Burma these spirits are called nats, in Thailand phǐ. Thai phǐ can be benign, like house spirits, or they can be malevolent “ghosts”.
You can see a variety of Thai ghosts in this TV ...
Yes, various other beings can possess humans e.g. hungry ghosts, Yakṣas, Maras
Here's one occasion where a human was possessed by a Mara named Dusi and the Mara being Moggallana himself in that life.
At that time, Moggallana was Mara, chief of demons, lord of the lower
worlds, and his name was Mara Dusi. He had a sister by name of Kali
whose son was ...
The respective key words for "good" and "bad" in the suttas are "wholesome" (kusala) and "unwholesome" (akusala):
kusala (adj.) [cp. Sk. kuśala] 1. (adj.) clever, skilful, expert; good, right, meritorious.
akusala : (nt.) demerit; sin; bad action. (adj.), unskilful.
"Wholesome" and "unwholesome" here are qualifications for action/kamma. Keeping in mind ...
Yes, Buddhism has evil spirits :)
In Pali Canon, in Jatakas, and in Tibetan Buddhism poems (for example "100,000 songs of Milarepa") there are numerous references to spirits and demons, both good and evil. Many of them are metaphorical depictions of various psychological forces taking possession of a person (e.g. Mara, the spirit of doubt and confusion, ...
If it were, it would be the same as saying:
"I am a Buddhist, you are not, you do the opposite of what I do and "believe in", hence I am good and you are wrong, hence you are devil."
In my humble opinion, it is only about being able to going back to null and "see" things around as they are and those who don't (haven't).
And those who don't (haven't) ...
Mara is simply the gatekeeper of Samsara, it wants to keep all life in an endless cycle of death and rebirth without beginning or ending. This cycle is full of unresolved karma and is full of suffering. Mara wants to keep you trapped in this cycle. It wants you to listen to evil thoughts and behave badly in life so you die. It absolutely hates people trying ...
If every bad event is because of karma, how can anyone ever murder an arhat or buddha?
Question premise might reveal an internal inconsistency - every bad event is not only caused by Kamma.
The Buddha taught that there are 5 natural laws (Niyamas), that causes physical and mental events to take place;
1. The seasonal laws (Utu-Niyama) related to ...
If I remember correctly, Buddha once said that Devadatta's throwing a rock and hurting Buddha's foot was caused by Buddha's past bad karma from a previous life.
Even for Buddha's and non-returners/Arhats past karma keeps getting resolved until parinibbana.
I would go so far as to say that neither Christians nor Muslims agree that Satan is a real being in the material world. After all, during the Holocaust, some Christians hid Jews in their homes. If Satan was actually an invisible person with eyes and ears and feet and a mouth, surely it would have been impossible to hide Jews from the Nazis.
The Buddha ...
Conceptions of what is good and evil are depend on what frame of reference you apply. Certain religious traditions that sprang up in the Middle East, the earliest of which was Zoroastrianism which most probably influenced all that followed, see life as a battle between the fundamental and external forces of good and evil:
Zoroastrianism states that active ...
Checkout the "States of Deprivation" under the 31 planes of existence.
Beings there are not necessarily evil. Rather they were born there because of evil deeds. But we do have an evil god called the Mara. He lives in the heaven called "Paranimmita-Vasavatti" Whoever holds the title 'Mara' is always evil as long as he holds that title.
The people who have done the most for you are your parents. Also if you take a Buddha he has done lot of work in fulfilling the Paramis for our sake. Hence any actions against such a person from you have benefited would mean we should generate a lot of negativity.
Buddha and Arahat are enlightened hence their mind is pure and full of compassion to others. ...
It is said that our current situation is the result of our karma collected over countless of lifetimes. That means that many of old-forgotten deeds sowed the seeds which ripened only after many lifetimes.
The 5 deadly sins are listed separately to highlight the fact the the results of those action will be immediate - killing a parent will definitely prevent ...