Posted by Shade of Sharaku on April 05, 2003 at 21:58:00:
In Reply to: Re: Karma and Hell posted by daruma on April 05, 2003 at 06:40:53:
It feels kind of funny to be a "shade" talking to someone named "Daruma" about death and Buddhism, but here goes...
In original Buddhist belief, there is no soul or spirit. Sakyamuni's big breakthrough was understanding that there is nothing permanent about the self, no essence or core or soul, but only an illusion of one that carries us forward through the realms of birth and death. In other words, our suffering is all self-imposed through our desires and attachments that keep us connected to our concept of self and to this unsatisfying world. Hell too is of our own making.
Of course, in the popular versions of Buddhism that develop in China and Japan, hell is taken much less psychologically, made into a physical place with its own set of supernatural beings and tortures. This is what Troy saw in the Japanese block printed book. I agree with you that this has much to do with the threat to keep people morally in line. But the problem with the physical threat is that people see through it, and then miss the essential teaching of the Buddha: that our suffering is self-imposed and due to our own mistaken minds.
The law of karma has a psychological dimension too: what you do comes back to you, if not out in the world, then always in your own mind. You are the one who has to live with yourself, every moment of every day, and if you can't respect that person and what it does, then life is hell, here and now, until you do something to change it.
: after a person dies,his physical body ceases to function and his spirit/soul leaves the body.depending on your belief,there is either one sould or 2 souls or one soul and one spirit.
: the egyptian calls them the ba and the ka,some call it the lower self and the upper self and the voodoo folks call it big and small souls,of couse the roman catholic church claims there is only one soul.
: either the soul or the spirit is made of ether,material much finer than the physical body and whether it will feel the pain and suffering of fire and ice and all the carnal sensations,i doubt it.
: i can only say that those of us who dwell in this pysical plane can only go that far with our imagination,that we will go to a different world or a different plane and possess the same sensation and value and face the same situations as we did in this world.
: or it could be back in the old days,this is an effective way to make ordinary folks behave themselves ,some folks just lack imagination or ability to conceptualise,you have to make them so vivid so it will stick!!
: just my 2 cents!!
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