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> Karma is untrue or useless, A serious discussion

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TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 06:10 PM, updated 2d ago

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I can perform a simple experiment to either disprove karma or to render it useless as the moral compass of our morality.

Please ask if you are interested.

I will start off the discussion by asking this question below.

Is karmic action over our next life guaranteed ?

This is a yes or no question.

If yes, it means one can expect to receive the karmic action of his past life.

If yes, then I can design a simple experiment to disprove karma.

If no, if means one might or might not receive the karmic retribution of his deeds in the past life. It simply lacks guarantees or predictability.

Think about the implication if you say no. It then means if one's reason to do good is because he wants to break the bad retribution, but since this retribution is not guaranteed, then it becomes bloody useless.

Please debate if you agree with me, or ask questions.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 4 2020, 06:37 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 06:23 PM

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In this post I want to explain the experiment to disprove karmic action.

The experiment is pretty simple.

Just collect 50 samples of living things. To avoid human morality issue, do it on ants.

Randomly split 50 ants of the sample into 25,25 and put them in two different containers.

Container A you spray insecticide on it. Container B you do not.

The outcome is pretty predictable. No matter how you choose to split the sample, ants in container A always ended up dead. That means irrespective of whatever their past lives, they are made to die. Those in container A are guaranteed to die, it does not matter what their past lives were.

Therefore karmic action of the past life cannot be guaranteed. The real cause of their death is actually the spray of insecticides on them. Their past lives have no part to play.

Some posters argued that isn't the selection the ants for container A a karma cause ?

Yeah, you are right. But that is present life karma. It means present life karma can swap out past life karma. This experiment's objective is to disprove past life karma, and not present life karma.

Just do the same thought experiment using human. Then you will see that karma is either untrue or useless.

If you argue that no matter how I prepare select the sample of ants for container A, it will not be random, past life karma of the ants have somehow impact the choice of the selection, then read this post #69 :-

https://forum.lowyat.net/topic/4937032/+68

Then you are saying there is no randomness in the real world.

You are then making a tall claim which go against science, which based on randomness of sampling to achieve objectivity of scientific experiment and the conclusion.

For example then, we cannot use clinical trial of a medication to arrive at the efficacy of a medicine.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 8 2020, 10:36 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 06:53 PM

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QUOTE(k2.ekAY @ Apr 4 2020, 06:45 PM)
here's a good video on karma & rebirth explained by a respectable bikkhu.

before you start any thought experiments to prove/disprove, perhaps you can spend some time watching the dhamma talk video below to understand the concept in buddhist context a little better smile.gif


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Is karmic action guaranteed ? Does it have predictability ? Just answer these simple questions.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 4 2020, 06:58 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 07:08 PM

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QUOTE(k2.ekAY @ Apr 4 2020, 07:05 PM)
yes. karmic action not necessarily only actions performed through speech or bodily act will guarantee karmic result/fruit (karma vipaka)

to be precise, karma is a volitional action. meaning it is an intention formed first in your mind, then leads to bodily action and verbal action.

and the fruition will ripen depending on whether certain conditions are met. a ripen karma is called karma vipaka.
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In other words you are saying it is not guaranteed. And hence it is useless, it lacks predictability.
TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 07:35 PM

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QUOTE(k2.ekAY @ Apr 4 2020, 07:18 PM)
it is predictable, but it's almost impossible for ordinary folks for you and i to predict the exact fruition of ones karma, unless you're fully enlighten  smile.gif

yet if certain conditions are met with the karmic action performed, a guaranteed fruition may come.

if you're really interested to understand more, maybe you can start reading the actual words of the buddha's teachings on karma here:
MN 136: Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta - https://suttacentral.net/mn136/en/sujato
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That's the definition of no predictability, unless you could exactly define the "conditions."




TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 08:52 PM

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QUOTE(k2.ekAY @ Apr 4 2020, 08:38 PM)
my bad, perhaps the should say it is not guaranteed unless conditions are met.  blush.gif

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It is the same !

1) A will happen unless B condition is met

or

2) A will not happen unless B condition is met,

Both are lacking of predictability unless you could clearly define what is exactly the B 'conditions'.

Have you have a clear definition of B ?




TSpuchongite
post Apr 4 2020, 09:34 PM

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QUOTE(k2.ekAY @ Apr 4 2020, 08:38 PM)
the thought experiment (container with ants) you created does not even have any relation at all in proving/disproving the phenomena.

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My thought experiment is irrelevant when karma does not have predictability.

In other words, I cannot disprove something which lacks predictability, it is simply unfalsifiable. I don't have to disprove an unfalsifiable claim.

I would be able to disprove it when you clearly define your conditions which makes it predictable.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 4 2020, 09:35 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 06:15 AM

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QUOTE(Spear2 @ Apr 4 2020, 10:14 PM)
It is rationalized when you choose which ants go into which container. The ants were chosen because of karma. To you it seems random, to the believers that's karma at work.
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That means the believers are saying the ants were chosen were the resultant (re)action of their past deeds and this karma chain cannot be broken.

My question will be, when can a new karma chain be created ?

What is stopping one to say "I killed somebody because of my past deeds" and that's my karma ?

Isn't that renders karma a useless piece of explanation ?
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 06:32 AM

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QUOTE(k2.ekAY @ Apr 4 2020, 10:59 PM)
i'm afraid you might have a different perception of what 'karma' is. hinduism has a different perception on karma and so is jainism. the term 'karma' exists even way before the Buddha came to be. for the sake of discussion, i assume you're referring to 'karma' in buddhist context, so we can discuss coherently.

the term 'karma' in buddhist context is a 'volitional action', the intention or motive behind an action. it forms in our minds, all beings' minds, that precede any bodily or verbal actions. 'karma vipaka', the ripening or maturation of karma, is bound to happen when 'karma' is done. meaning the fruition of karma is guaranteed. the severity level of 'karma vipaka' depends on the severity of 'karma' done. it can ripen in the very present life or far future into the next life.

there are causes that drive us to have volitional actions (karma), I won't explain much of that because it is not relevant to your question but it is important to mention. to put it simply, the driving factors are the roots that manifest in 'karma' that can be categorized into unwholesome root (greed, hatred, delusion) and wholesome root (non-greed, non-hatred, non-delusion) they are in always dormant state, eager to jump out when conditions are met. buddhist monks' goal is to eradicate these unwholesome root, completely.
okay, now let us go back to your question at the very beginning: "Is karmic action over our next life guaranteed ?"

in my opinion and understanding, the result of our next life can be guaranteed only if certain conditions are met. and exactly what "conditions' as you ask further previously, that would depend on what sort of result you're expecting to achieve. with the right cause and nourished with the right conditions correspond to the expected result, the expected result would then be guaranteed.
Those are vague. You have not defined right cause, right conditions and the rest. It is vague words piling on vague words.

QUOTE
if we refer back to your ant experiment. the CONDITION here for the early death of ants in container A is the administering of pesticide. the story doesn't end there. life cycle goes on in Samsara. the ants died may reborn into ants again or other beings in the next life, depends on the expiration & maturation of karma of the deeds of their past lives. 
Did you not realize that the ants were not in their first life, they would have existed in this universe for many generations, and carried with them the karma of their past lives ?

If I perform a new experiment to terminate their lives and that is successful and deterministic, and that breaks the predetermined action of karmic chain of the respective ants, that means either karma is false or it lacks guaranteed predictability.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 5 2020, 07:47 AM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 01:53 PM

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QUOTE(uamcy @ Apr 5 2020, 01:25 PM)
Based on a thought experiment is also very tiny compared to the universe. At least I said it's likely.

But ignorant like you like to make a conclusion without evidence to prove karma is untrue.
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The thought experiment has nothing to do with the size of the universe.

It is a limited scope experiment which the conclusion is to be drawn based upon whatever on the earth, to which the karma law is said by Buddhists to be applicable.

Have you read the text in the first two posts ?

The first post starts off the discussion by asking if you think karma action is guaranteed to be predictable. If your answer is that it is not guaranteed to be predictable, then don't even bother to dwell on the thought experiment mentioned in the second post. When a claim lacks predictability, then it is an unfalsifiable claim. An unfalsifiable claim is not eligible for proving or disproving.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 5 2020, 02:04 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 02:09 PM

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QUOTE(uamcy @ Apr 5 2020, 02:04 PM)
The size is important unless you specifically mentioned Karma is untrue on earth.

For example, if you do your experiment to detect the existence of ghosts in a certain village that claimed to have ghosts roaming around. You did the experiment of 2 decades and finally, you concluded Ghost is untrue. This conclusion is not valid because the entire universe is too huge. Your sample size is too small to make sure a big conclusion.

This applies to almost anything including UFOs, Aliens, God, Deity or your favorite unicorn.  smile.gif
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We are not talking about the ghost, we are also not talking about UFO.

You have not even replied my first question, is karma guaranteed to be predictable ?

Did you even read what I wrote in my previous post ?

Is the alien UFO or ghost thing falsifiable ?

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 5 2020, 02:09 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 02:20 PM

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QUOTE(uamcy @ Apr 5 2020, 02:13 PM)
Karma will relate to religion. It's hard to prove or explain to you. There is no certainty. This is not mathematics, 1+1=2. That's why certain people will eat vegetarian and no meats. It's sinful for them. I am sure you enjoy eating meats.  smile.gif
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Please note that when we attempt to falsify religion, we are picking specific claims of the religion to falsify. For example, if Christianity claims about Noah flood on earth, or Adam and Eve were created some 10k years ago, then there are specific to discuss.

Those are falsifiable things. We will not be able to falsify a generic arbitrary God.

And yet you still haven't answer the specific question I asked about karma. As what I asked is the only thing in karma which can have hope for a discussion, provided that the claim has predictability.

We are not going to argue on something which is unfalsifiable.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 5 2020, 02:22 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 02:26 PM

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QUOTE(cmytwk @ Apr 5 2020, 02:24 PM)
You may donate some money to me......

Thanks in advanced.
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Haha what's the relevance to the thread ? You are risking of being reported as spamming if you make only such a post.
TSpuchongite
post Apr 5 2020, 02:55 PM

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Is the theory of evolution falsifiable ?

The answer is yes, it is falsifiable !

Does the theory of evolution make prediction ?

The answer is yes, it does make predictions in certain ways.

https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Falsifiability_of_evolution

Read carefully about how you can falsify TOE. You will be famous if you managed do it.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 5 2020, 03:01 PM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 6 2020, 07:28 AM

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QUOTE(kmarc @ Apr 5 2020, 11:41 PM)
Since the experts can't answer satisfactorily, let me answer for them. Ahem.....

Karma is carried throughout a "consciousness" existence where the next cycle is determined by that has been done in the previous cycle.

The one that most people understand is that if you have done good in this life, you will rewarded with a better life next cycle. If you did bad, you will be demoted in the next cycle.

What happens to the ants that got the free insecticide then? Well, first of all, they were very bad in the last cycle so they were demoted to become ants. Serves them right. That's karma!!! So how are they going to get the opportunity to ascend when everybody knows ants can't do good or bad deeds. What? Ants going on a homicidal rampage then get bad karma? Or ants did good deeds by helping poor ants so get good karma? They probably don'tt understand anything at that time. Only mindless insects programmed to do their work. Punishment enough I would say.

So if the ants died suddenly, the default is that they get to ascend up the ranks... a bit. Maybe become spider. After dying, the ascend further. Up to a point where their consciousness become self aware, and they know what is good or bad. At that point in the cycle, karma kicks in, and you'll get what you deserve in the next cycle based on what you did in the previous life.

How did I do? Ok? biggrin.gif
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This gist of the thought experiment is that we are supposed to gather a random sample representing living things with very different past lives.

So selecting only ants, is considered non-random sampling.

Since this is only a thought experiment, let's re-construct the samples. We collect the samples of living things which includes ants, cockroach, monkey, tiger, human, prisoners, church pastors, monks, rapist, rich man, poor man, charity donors, serial killers.

And then there is a computer program to randomly split them into group A and group B.

Group A will be given hydrogen cyanide gas.

Group B will not be given hydrogen cyanide gas.

What will be the expected result ?

Will their past life background/karma have any impact to their destiny ?

There are many variations to the sample possible. But repeated experiments will show that the outcome is independent of their past lives. Present life karma/encounters/causes completely determine their destiny.

This post has been edited by puchongite: Apr 6 2020, 07:30 AM
TSpuchongite
post Apr 6 2020, 08:32 AM

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QUOTE(kmarc @ Apr 6 2020, 08:21 AM)
You missed my part 2, as below:
That would easily explained by the fact their karma is carried forward together with their consciousness which is the only permanent thing in this universe.

Think of karma as a scoring system from 0 to 100. You do good, your score goes up. You do bad, your score goes down. So let's take your example of a rapist and a philanthropist in this life cycle. Both had a score of 80 in past lives. When these 2 were cyanided (haha), they goes into the next cycle but their score would be different. The rapist's score goes down so he gets demoted and become a cow. (If it was a serial killer, probably become any!) The philantropist's score goes up and he becomes a human Buddhist with higher chance to enter Nirvana. Of course, like the part 2 that I mentioned, you'll probably need to have a score of 100, a human Buddhist monk, to even have a remote change of entering nirvana. However, if you score nothing because you were an ant, your score will gradually go up, as you did nothing bad.

So each life cycle's karma is additive or subtractive and not all or none.

Haha, how? Better? biggrin.gif

Will conclude my main reasons/points for this exercise soon. biggrin.gif
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Then you are saying there is no predictability in karma, meaning the karma from past life can be deferred due to a stronger or more dominating present life karma, encounters or causes.

Do you have a formula for how past life karma is combined with present life karma so that we can formulate the predictability ?

When a claim lacks predictability, that makes it unfalsifiable.

TSpuchongite
post Apr 6 2020, 09:56 AM

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QUOTE(kmarc @ Apr 6 2020, 09:41 AM)
It is predictable based on the scoring. An example of the scores:

0 - bacteria and virus
10 - microscopic organisms
20 - ants, insects
30 - animals
50 - humans, atheists biggrin.gif
60 - humans, theists tongue.gif
70 - humans, normal Buddhists
80-90 - humans, devout Buddhists
90-100 - humans, buddhist monks

Say you are at 70, a normal Buddists. In this cycle, you are a thief. Not really very evil so minus 10 points for you. That means, in your next life, you are punished to become a human theists at 60 points. Haha. Say at that time, you died prematurely without any chance to earn any points. Your scores will be brought forward to next cycle, as karma follows consciousness which is the only permanent thing. However, not only is your score brought forward, it is added a bit because you didnt do anything bad. Instead of 60, you get +2 to become 62. That means that if you unfortunately died prematurely in the next few cycles, you may end up with a score of 70 again - a human Buddhist. This is to explain how lower tier life-forms, who doesnt know the meaning of good or bad, gets a chance to have a better life in the future. An ant will eventually get upgraded to the next tier eventually, and the next and the next, until it's consciousness assumes a form that is aware of good and bad. Once that happens, points will be additionally added or deducted based on karma.

And for those at top tier, the buddhist monk, it doesnt mean they get to enter Nirvana that cycle. It is not so easy. So each cycle, as long as they don't do bad, they will be at 100 and their chances increases each cycle. Who knows how many attempts at max 100 is needed before one can enter. Maybe 10, 20 or 100.

For you and me, we're at around 50 so there's still a lot of points to accumulate before we even have a chance to get the prize. sad.gif we better get cracking earning more points!!!! biggrin.gif
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How can it have predictability when I already said, in my previous post, if you have a random sample of living things with different karma scores, but all subjected to hydrogen cyanide gas in this present life, all ended up in the same fate of death ?

The thought experiment clear showed that their fate is independent of their past life karma scores.
TSpuchongite
post Apr 6 2020, 10:02 AM

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QUOTE(mikehuan @ Apr 6 2020, 09:57 AM)
what if; the ants that were terminated were already set to be reborn into a better life? you were merely the tool to facilitate their next cycle? how would u be able to predict if you have no information on the ants that died on their karma status? Food for thought.
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Please only focus on the predictability in present life, that's the only measurable prediction. The next life is not measurable.

In other words, what is the prediction which karma says about our present life, based on our past life karma and present life karma.
TSpuchongite
post Apr 6 2020, 10:21 AM

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QUOTE(kmarc @ Apr 6 2020, 10:06 AM)
Ya ma. Already explained that their current cycle is not necessarily determined by past deeds. Instead, what they became was determined by pass deeds. Say a mass murderer human theist who became an ant because of karma. He already got his karma punishment so whatever happens after that is anybody's guess, whether cyanided or not.
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Read post #56, focus on predictability manifested in present life. The thought experiment is for measuring present life predictability.

If the karma accumulated by someone has no predictability on his present life, then it has no predictability on future lives.
TSpuchongite
post Apr 6 2020, 10:47 AM

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QUOTE(kmarc @ Apr 6 2020, 10:35 AM)
Ya, that's what I'm saying.

On death, your karma points will determine what you become in your next cycle, and not what will happen in the next cycle. A mass murderer, on dying, gets his punishment by being an ant in the next cycle. He doesnt get to become human. That's his karma punishment. So as an ant in next cycle, whatever happens when he is an ant has nothing to do with the fact that he was a previous mass murderer. He already got his punishment by being an ant and in the new life, the ant is still being given the chance, like all life-forms, to ascend further and accumulate more points.

So whether you cyanide the ant or not, it doesnt matter. The outcome of this current ant life is not determine by previous life deeds. Meaning to say that at the time of death, the predictability is what the consciousness become in the next cycle, not the outcome of the next cycle.

Edit : to put it in another way, once you get punished or rewarded (to become whatever your score is), karma resets and all is forgotten. You start afresh with the points you have. You are not punished for endless cycles because of one bad life cycle. Every consciousness is given a new chance in every cycle.
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Then you are saying karma does not bother or predicts about whether you suffer or not in your entire life. It only covers what life form you will be. You know we can change the thought experiment to deliver suffering to group A.


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