Saturday, September 13, 2008

Not the same, nor different. (Part 2 of 2)

Question: (unedited)
"The entity is there..." What entity? You imply that consciousness dissolves (although the Buddha was couscious of past lives???), but something persists. What is this eternal something, and why don't you want to call it a soul?

My comment:

Consciousness never dissolves. Take the example of a stream. Consciousness is like the flowing stream. It is always there. But the water you see in the stream is not the same water. The "entity" is the "stream". The "consciousness" is the flowing water in the stream. The flowing stream of water is the life continuum. To insist that there is a permanent soul is just like insisting that the stream of water must be the same permanent water. This "eternal something" is the flowing water which makes up the stream. It is a very profound concept of reality. Perhaps it takes time for one to understand after a period of serious contemplation and analysis. It takes time and patience to understand the profound teachings of the Buddha. This is the best I can explain. Hope you are not disappointed with my explanation. Keep on searching and with patience you will find the truth.

(If you understand this concept of rebirth and still insisting on calling it "soul" then there is no cause for argument. It's a matter of semantics.)

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