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Unavoidable Taboo--Death, I Want to Know (Part 4)

Popularity 1Viewed 2233 times 2016-5-17 12:20 |Personal category:common sense, life, religion|System category:Life| common sense, life, religion, education, Chinese culture

                     Part 4--Which Theory Is More Reasonable About Life & Death?

As a common person, I am quite interested in reading books on this kind of subjects. The Bible, Koran and many Buddhist Sutras all expound their theories and doctrines on life and death.


Based on my own personal comparison, not on rigorous theoretical study, I am more likely inclined to think that Buddhism is more close to truth, because I think it reasonably interprets the reason for life and death and the sufferings accompanying our life and also paves the ways for us to solve this problems.


In order to enable us to have a big picture on this issue quickly, it is better to introduce several Buddhist concepts regarding this .


Samsara:
The continual repetitive cycle of birth and death is defined as samsara. The reason why the ordinary beings are permanently trapped in this cycle is that they tightly grasp and fixate on a self and experiences. From this definition, we can easily understand that life will never ever end finally, it just change from one form to another form, namely, going through the wheel of karma, experiencing the six realms.


Nirvana:
In Buddhism, Nirvana is described as the extinguishing of the fires that cause suffering and rebirth. ”These fires are typically identified as the fires of attachment, aversion and ignorance. When the fires are extinguished, suffering and rebirth comes to an end.” (From Wikipedia)


The Pure Land:
According to the Pure Land Buddhism, if you have faith in Amitabha, and accept Amitabha’s deliverance, and can recite Amitabha’s name single-mindedly, and also aspire to be reborn in Amitabha’s Pure Land then you are sure to be delivered to Pure Land when you come to the end of your life. In the Pure Land, you will never experience the cycle of rebirth again, and from where you will become Buddha one day. Generally speaking, the Pure Land school teaches you a way to transcend Samsara.


It is the above three basic concepts that affect my world view,  value, and view on life and death. It shows us not only the reason (attachment to “self”) why we are constrained in the cycle of rebirth and suffering, but also the ways (Nirvana, or Delivery to Pure Land by Citing Amitabha) to transcend this cycle. According to Buddhism, it is definitely ourselves, instead of any others, who determine our life and death and our fate. 


As a normal person, we normally don’t think or plan to "experience death" besides reading or listening to these theories and stories. But it is true that some of humankind are doing so. Let’s have a look in Part 5.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Reply Report voice_cd 2016-5-18 08:47
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