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Self awareness after death?

By Buddhist teachings, is there any self awareness or (self-)conscience after death?
Could you realize the condition that you're in?
What about self-concept, self-perception, or self image?

Comments

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited February 7

    There is an article that discusses the different current views on Death and the after effects, in 'accesstoinsight'.

    ...the true Buddhist view is that the impersonal stream of consciousness flows on — impelled by ignorance and craving — from life to life. Though the process is impersonal, the illusion of personality continues as it does in this life.

    In terms of Absolute Truth, there is no "immortal soul" that manifests in a succession of bodies, but in terms of the relative truth by which we are normally guided, there is a "being" that is reborn. In order to gain Enlightenment, it is necessary to come to a realization of the situation as it is according to absolute truth; in order to face and begin to understand the problem of death we can, in the first instance, view it in terms of that "relative truth" which normally rules our lives and which has its validity in its own sphere. We need merely, for the present, to remind ourselves that this is but a "provisional" view of things. In this connection, too, we have to observe that we are dealing only with the question of death as it affects the ordinary person, not one who has attained Enlightenment.

    However, consciousness does not mean 'memory'.

    As far as I am aware, unless someone has personal recollections of a previous life, which can be documented, verified, checked and confirmed as - if not definite, then - extremely likely, nobody in Buddhism has confirmed, without any shadow of a doubt, a Self-awareness, or self-consciousness after their own death.

    lobsterTiggerpersonsatcittananda
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    Self awareness after death?

    @Daegu
    You'll just have to wait and see, but in the meantime try to live a wholesome life :)

    Tiggersilverdhammachick
  • silversilver In the beginning there was nothing, and then it exploded. USA, Left coast. Veteran

    @Daegu said:
    By Buddhist teachings, is there any self awareness or (self-)conscience after death?
    Could you realize the condition that you're in?
    What about self-concept, self-perception, or self image?

    It's a great existential (?) type question. After reading the other posts, it always brings me to what about people who experience visits from those who have passed on? Isn't that something that could strongly (in my book) be considered proof - even though it's considered by some as 'only' circumstantial or no proof at all?

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @Daegu said:
    By Buddhist teachings, is there any self awareness or (self-)conscience after death?
    Could you realize the condition that you're in?
    What about self-concept, self-perception, or self image?

    @Daegu

    You might find this documentary of interest "The Tibetan Book Of The Dead"

    In it they discuss "The Bardo"

    dhammachick
  • @Daegu said:
    By Buddhist teachings, is there any self awareness or (self-)conscience after death?
    Could you realize the condition that you're in?
    What about self-concept, self-perception, or self image?

    The Buddha had this to say:

    As he was sitting there, the Blessed One said to him, "Is it true, Sāti, that this pernicious view has arisen in you — 'As I understand the Dhamma taught by the Blessed One, it is just this consciousness that runs and wanders on, not another'?"

    "Exactly so, lord. As I understand the Dhamma taught by the Blessed One, it is just this consciousness that runs and wanders on, not another."

    "Which consciousness, Sāti, is that?" [1]

    "This speaker, this knower, lord, that is sensitive here & there to the ripening of good & evil actions."

    "And to whom, worthless man, do you understand me to have taught the Dhamma like that? Haven't I, in many ways, said of dependently co-arisen consciousness, 'Apart from a requisite condition, there is no coming-into-play of consciousness'? [2] But you, through your own poor grasp, not only slander us but also dig yourself up [by the root] and produce much demerit for yourself. That will lead to your long-term harm & suffering."

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.038.than.html

    What about the concept of self?

    "That person considers improperly thus: 'Did I exist in the past? Did I not exist in the past? Who was I in the past? How was I in the past?[15] In the past, who had been I and who was I [in the subsequent existence]? Will I exist in the future? Will I not exist in the future? Who will I be in the future? How will I be in the future? In the future, having been who, who will I be?'
    "Also as regards the present, uncertainty arises in him thus: 'Do I exist? Do I not exist? Who am I? How am I ? From where has this soul come? Where will this soul go?'

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.002.bpit.html

    lobster
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