Reincarnation in Buddhism

Reincarnation or rebirth, contrary to popular Western belief, is a negative term in Buddhism. The goal of Buddhism is to end reincarnation, not perpetuate it. 

How this misconception arose is various. It could have been from a generalisation from another Eastern religion – Hinduism – in which it sees rebirth as a positive term, where being reborn means to improve to higher states of being until Oneness with God, or moksha. In contrast Buddhism does not aim for oneness but “release”. 

To be “reborn” in English also seems to suggest to return anew. This image can be seen in the term “Born-Again Christian”. Whereas no such concept exists at all in Buddhism. 

Thoughts on the Mind

To me, there is no doubt that the mind is product of the physical brain that is of the physical world. Without the physical world there is no mind. By extension all concepts are therefore a product of the physical world by way of the physical brain. Once every living sentient thing disappears (if that is at all possible) from the physical universe then all concepts disappear. What remains is a physical universe without sentient being. That is quite possible because there is no law that says there must be sentient beings. In fact at the very beginning after the Big Bang it was quite possible that the universe did not contain a single sentient entity whatsoever. This being the case then it is possible that there can be a time in the future without sentient beings as well.

The faces of Foucault

Not many people know it but Michel Foucault had (at least) a public and private face. I will not elaborate. But perhaps it is only important to remember that we are protean in nature.  Everyday we play many roles. Most are chosen. Some are not. Many, you may see. Others are unnoticed, camouflaged or outright hidden from you. 

The Existential problem

I am happy with the concept though not with the term of the absurd. The definition that everything is meaningless is perhaps better rephrased as “without intrinsic meaning”. This is better captured in the term “without essence”. There is only existence. At first glance this sentence seems to indicate that existentialists are a kind of realist, materialist or physicalist. But the concerns of existentialists are how to live with freedom of choice. In other words, existentialists are concerned more with the mind than the real. The so-called freedom of choice, then, is seemingly complete freedom. Existentialists ignore the physical limitations that we are bound to, opting to place priority to the mind.

coffee bean

the past
painful histories
the not so
dark (roast)
secrets of man

each little bean
can represent a soul
the soil and toil
that had been lost
for the present

or it can re-present
a now and future
that we aspire to

to wake
or awaken us

and get us ready
for another day

Religion, philosophy and science have the same aim

Looking beyond the surface of religion, philosophy and science they essentially have the same aim – to explain what the world is and how we should live in it. For this reason I find it does not matter what religion or belief you have as long as you are trying to be the best person possible you are heading in the right direction. But once you try to impose your own values on others then we lose our way and we lose respect for other people to have their beliefs.

Stasis of form

The physical stasis of the form of the word creates the illusion of the stasis of the thing.