What are the different beliefs in reincarnation among different branches of Buddhism?
What are the different beliefs in reincarnation among different branches of Buddhism?
Zen, Nichiren, Pure Land, True Pure Land, Theravada, Mahayana, etc.
- isis's brotherLv 77 years agoFavorite Answer
On Reincarnation - by Takashi Tsuji
Do you Buddhists believe in rebirth as an animal in the next life? Are you going to be a dog or a cow in the future? Does the soul transmigrate into the body of another person or some animal? What is the difference between transmigration and reincarnation? Is it the same as rebirth? Is karma the same as fate?
A gross misunderstanding of about Buddhism exists today, especially in the notion of reincarnation. The common misunderstanding is that a person has led countless previous lives, usually as an animal, but somehow in this life he is born as a human being and in the next life he will be reborn as an animal, depending on the kind of life he has lived.
This misunderstanding arises because people usually do not know-how to read the sutras or sacred writings. It is said that the Buddha left 84,000 teachings; the symbolic figure represents the diverse backgrounds characteristics, tastes, etc. of the people. The Buddha taught according to the mental and spiritual capacity of each individual. For the simple village folks living during the time of the Buddha, the doctrine of reincarnation was a powerful moral lesson. Fear of birth into the animal world must have frightened many people from acting like animals in this life.
Herein lies our problem. A parable, when taken literally, does not make sense to the modern mind. Therefore we must learn to differentiate the parables and myths from actuality. However, if we learn to go beyond or transcend the parables and myths, we will be able to understand the truth.
People will say "If such is the case why not speak directly so that we will be able to come to an immediate grasp of the truth?" This statement is understandable, but truth is often inexpressible. [Ed comment: we as human beings are limited in understanding "Buddha Knowledge". We cannot speak TRUTH, only words ABOUT Truth] Thus, writers and teachers have often resorted to the language of the imagination to lead the reader from a lower to a higher truth.
What Reincarnation is Not
Karma is a Sanskrit word from the root "Kri" to do or to make and simply means "action." It operates in the universe as the continuous chain reaction of cause and effect. It is not only confined to causation in the physical sense but also it has moral implications. "A good cause, a good effect; a bad cause a bad effect" is a common saying. In this sense karma is a moral law.
Now human beings are constantly giving off physical and spiritual forces in all directions. In physics we learn that no energy is ever lost; only that it changes form. This is the common law of conservation of energy. Similarly, spiritual and mental action is never lost. It is transformed. Thus Karma is the law of the conservation of moral energy.
By actions, thoughts, and words, man is releasing spiritual energy to the universe and he is in turn affected by influences coming in his direction. Man is therefore the sender and receiver of all these influences. The entire circumstances surrounding him is his karma.
With each action-influence he sends out and at the same time, receives, he is changing. This changing personality and the world he lives in, constitute the totality of his karma.
Karma should not be confused with fate. Fate is the notion that man's life is preplanned for him by some external power, and he has no control over his destiny. Karma on the other hand, can be changed. Because man is a conscious being he can be aware of his karma and thus strive to change the course of events. In the Dhammapada we find the following words, "All that we are is a result of what we have thought, it is founded on our thoughts and made up of our thoughts."
What we are, then, is entirely dependent on what we think. Therefore, the nobility of man's character is dependent on his"good" thoughts, actions, and words. At the same time, if he embraces degrading thoughts, those thoughts invariably influence him into negative words and actions.
For example, the realm of human beings has all the other nine states (from hell to Buddhahood). Man is at the same time capable of real selfishness, creating his own hell, or is truly compassionate, reflecting the compassion of Amida Buddha. Buddhas too have the other nine realms in their minds, for how can a Buddha possibly save those in hell if he himself does not identify with their suffering and guide them to enlightenment.Source(s): search [ abridged]
- Anonymous4 years ago
REINCARNATION & YOGA EXPOSED
The Lord Jesus Christ taught that we live only once (Matthew 25:46) and that Salvation is found only through Him (John 6:35; John 8:12; John 14:6; John 10:9-11). The Bible does not teach the false doctrine of reincarnation. The doctrine of reincarnation is a cleaver lie of Satan who wants to deceive us into thinking that we could achieve salvation and liberation through our works/deeds and not by our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Lord Jesus Christ (the 2nd Person of the Triune Godhead) never taught or mentioned reincarnation. Some believe that in Matthew 11:7-14, Jesus meant that the prophet Elijah reincarnated as John the Baptist. Jesus called John the Baptist Elijah because John the Baptist came in the “spirit and power of Elijah”. The Bible is very clear on this:
And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.
In addition, John the Baptist himself specifically said he was not Elijah:
And they asked him, What then? Are you Elijah? And he said, I am not. Are you that prophet? And he answered, No.
The Holy Spirit (the 3rd Person of the Triune Godhead) said that many would fall for doctrines of demons (1 Timothy 4:1) and reincarnation is definitely a demonic doctrine. Demons are fallen angels and spirits of Nephilim. These beings make up Satan’s army and are bent on leading humans to destruction.
Persons who claim they were having memories of past lives are either not telling the truth or were actually receiving visions from evil spirits who have been around for thousands of years.
Demons implant memories in the minds of humans to make them believe in reincarnation, one of Satan’s key deceptions. A demon who lived in the body of a certain person, shared the same experiences and memories of that person. If that demon enters another person, that demon can transfer their memories to their new host. If the person doesn’t know the truth, they will think that they had lived previous lives. Demons can gain the right of way to enter a person when they practice sin. Allowing oneself to be hypnotized, taking drugs and practicing yoga are easy ways to becoming possessed by evil spirits. Demons can also enter an unborn foetus if one or both parents have unrepented sin.
Reincarnation is a false teaching – humans are given only one physical life (Hebrews 9:27). The Lord Jesus said that the human being’s afterlife state whether torment or paradise, will be eternal (Matthew 25:46). In the original text, the Greek word for eternal, “aiōnion” is used. He didn’t say that we would be born again and again until we got it right and received liberation. He would not have made that huge sacrifice for us if we could have had unity to God another way, and if there was another way, He would have taught that. The Lord said He could have employed legions of angels to prevent His crucifixion (Matthew 26:53), but because of His great and perfect love for humanity, He chose to endure a very painful death so we could be redeemed and united to God.
A Look at the Word, "Aionion"
Yogic doctrines hold that there is “serpent energy” called kundalini located at the base of the human spine and this energy can be caused through yoga to rise to the brain to result in “God-realization”. Yogis believe that once this alleged state of God-Realization is achieved by an individual, she or he no longer needs to reincarnate. The truth is kundalini does not naturally reside within humans. Kundalini is actually a type of demonic entity which can gain entry into a human if the human practices yoga. I’ve already proven that reincarnation is false.
Shiva, one of the 3.3 million Hindu deities gave the doctrines of yoga to mankind. Shiva is called "lord of yoga" by the Hindus. He is also known as "lord of the third eye", "lord of the lingam (male sex organ)" “god of this world” and "god of destruction". As Christians we know that the “god of this world” and “god of destruction” is Satan (2 Corinthians 4:4; John 10:10). Shiva and Satan are the same being.
Satan likes to counterfeit God’s truths and he even has a counterfeit salvation – which is yoga. Kundalini (which is actually a type of demon) is the COUNTERFEIT Holy Spirit and the Siddhis are the COUNTERFEIT gifts of the Holy Spirit. Yoga was designed by Satan to put humans in contact with the Hindu deities (demons). Faith in Jesus as one’s Saviour puts one in union with God while yoga puts one in union with Shiva or another demon.
Yogis believe that the spirit of the human being is God but this is false. The human being has a physical body, soul and spirit. The spirit of a human being isn’t God but needs God. It is where one receives God when they accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour. Where the “S” in spirit is capitalized in the Bible, it refers to the Holy Spirit who is the third person of the triune Godhead. After one accepts Christ, the Holy Spirit (not their spirit) brings life to them (Romans 8:10). In Zechariah 12:1, we see that God formed the spirit of humans within them. As soon as one accepts the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour, the Holy Spirit takes up residence within their spirit making them a true child of God (Romans 8:15-16). The Holy Spirit enables us to have a spiritual understanding of the things of God (1 Corinthians 2:11).
Yogis and many users of entheogens mistake altered states of consciousness for Godly experiences. They erroneously attribute to these states such terms as God-Realization, Self-Realization, Enlightenment, Illumination, Unitive Knowledge of the Divine, Reentering the Kingdom and Reintegration.
DMT (dimethyltryptamine) is a hallucinogen found naturally in the mammalian brain. DMT can also be extracted from certain plants. Deep and prolonged practice of yoga causes the brain to release DMT and this induces altered states of consciousness, hallucinations and feelings of bliss. Individuals who consume or inject themselves with DMT derived from external sources achieve the same altered states and feelings as yogis who spend long years in yogic practices.
Many pagan mystics have believed and taught that Jesus practiced yoga and achieved enlightenment. The Lord Jesus Christ never supported yogic doctrines. Jesus is by nature God and the 2nd Person of the Triune Godhead which is made up of Adonai, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Because Jesus, unlike humans, is by nature God, He has full authority over all demons and creatures and was able to offer His body and blood to atone for the sins of mankind so we could by faith have unity to God.
The truth about Jesus Christ can be found only in the Holy Bible. Three days after the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins, He resurrected from the dead (Luke 24:1-8; Acts 10:40; 1 Corinthians 15:4) and 40 days later, He ascended into Heaven (Acts 1:3; Luke 24:50-53; Acts 1:9-11).
Without God, the spiritual part of the human being is dead (Ephesians 2:5, Colossians 2:13). The sin of our first parents (Adam and Eve) caused the separation between God and man. Romans 6:23 says the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Sin causes us to be separated from God which results in spiritual death. Christ, the 2nd Person of the Triune Godhead was made flesh (through the immaculate conception) and paid the price for our sins by dying on the cross so we could through faith in Christ as our Saviour be instantly redeemed and united to God and have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit who teaches us, comforts us and grants us fruits to live in righteousness and gifts to help and edify the Church. There is no redemption or unity to God apart from receiving the Lord Jesus Christ as one’s Saviour and Lord.
A PERSON BECOMES A CHRISTIAN THROUGH FAITH. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as one's Saviour is the ONLY WAY one can receive CLEANSING OF SINS (1 John 1:7), REDEMPTION (Ephesians 1:7), ADOPTION BY GOD (Romans 8:15), THE INFILLING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, the 3rd Person of the Triune Godhead (John 14:26; 1 Corinthians 6:19), SANCTIFICATION (Hebrews 13:12; 1 Corinthians 1:2), JUSTIFICATION (1 Corinthians 6:11), TRANSFORMATION (2 Corinthians 3:18; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Hebrews 9:12-14; Titus 3:5) and SALVATION (Romans 10:9; Revelation 21:8).
PRAYER TO ACCEPT JESUS CHRIST AS YOUR LORD AND SAVIOUR
"Dear Jesus, I am a sinner. I repent of my sins. Please forgive me and save me by Your shed blood. Come into my heart. I want to receive You as my own personal Lord and Saviour. Amen"
Powerful Repentance and Deliverance Prayer
THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS AND OTHER ANCIENT NON CHRISTIAN SOURCES PROVE THE VALIDITY OF THE BIBLE:
FULFILLED PROPHECIES ALSO PROVE THE BIBLE IS RELIABLE:
Fulfilled Prophecy: Evidence for the Reliability of the Bible by Dr. Hugh Ross
PROPHECIES OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST IN EVERY BOOK OF THE BIBLE
The Father is God, the Son (Jesus Christ) is God & the Holy Spirit is God
SEQUENCE OF END-TIME EVENTS IN BIBLE PROPHECY
- Anonymous7 years ago
Not so much reincarnation inself. I believe therevada involves a god like figure while mayahana doesnt.