Dharma Questions: Miscellany — Part 1

This irregular “Dharma Questions” series deals with “Dharma” meaning both the truth of the nature of reality and some Buddhist teachings. Please see this post on the intensions for questioning and not questioning. Amongst other things these questions can be:

  • thought experiments
  • borderline musings not meant to be answered
  • from lack of effort of not contemplating or researching them yet

  1. How is the rate of annica (aka inconstancy/impermanence) determined? How does annica work?
  2. Is metta still dukkha?
  3. Are parasites (sentient) beings?
  4. Would constantly contemplating (the existence of) sentient beings aid in amplifying sentient beings’ continual wandering in Samsara, or the opposite where not considering sentient beings enough aids in giving rise to continued existence of sentient beings (in order to be valued, honored, and respected)? Or both of these scenarios, or neither, or something else, or what significant effects do paying attention to, or not paying attention to sentient beings have?
  5. Would samsara exist without beings?
  6. What if one was offered — or could access a route to — expedited Buddhahood with incalculable benefits to/for all beings everywhere, but doing so would activate and increase atrocities of Mara’s armies (and the like) upon humanity, at least in the short term? (What would you choose?)
  7. Why is it called the form realm? Don’t beings in the sense desire realm experience forms regularly?
  8. Why aren’t the three characteristics of existence more easily, continuously, and readily apparent?
  9. Do non-dual teachings bypass (the teaching/learning mechanism) of polarity? Isn’t polarity to be mastered? (If not,) how and why did polarity come about?
  10. Seems like there’s so much weight put on the last mind moment but I feel what’s often left out is so much has led up to condition and cause that last mind moment. If this is not pointed out then there seems like there could be a hell of lot of pressure on the last mind moment. What perceptions are skillful and wise about the last mind moment?
  11. Does chanting “Amitābha” when a thought arises to counteract and quiet the mind discourage investigation, contemplation and independent thinking?
  12. If each Buddha has an associated pure land why is there so much emphasis on Amitābha Buddha?
  13. What karmic effect/consequences, if any, are there for an intentionally willful action to balance and/or eliminate/cease karma?
  14. Does it make sense to apply the five daily reflections to each of the five aggregates?
  15. What is the reasoning for (the difference between) six and 10 paramitas in Theravada and Mahayana respectively?
  16. Can too much emphasis on emptiness lead away from more life preserving and/or life promoting choices?
  17. Can merit be hijacked (and held ransom/hostage)?
  18. How is (equal) merit transfer distributed (without hijacking)?
  19. How do (Christian and other traditions’) angelic hierarchies compare with the Buddhist cosmology of heavenly realms? [check Ajahn Puddhadammo’s book on Buddhist cosmology: THE BUDDHIST COSMOS: A Comprehensive Survey of the Early Buddhist Worldview; according to Theravāda and Sarvsātivāda sources]
  20. Do these lines in the Metta Sutta mean action should be taken? ‘Let none deceive another or despise any being in any state. Let none through anger or ill-will wish harm upon another.’ If so, to what extent ought one act to prevent and address harm, deception and despising?
  21. Can one of the 4 elements be isolated and exist without another? If not, why not? If so, how? And would it (then) be considered a non-compounded, permanent thing? Rephrased: Are each of the individual four elements (non)compounded, (im)permanent things?
  22. What is the root (causes and) condition of (each of the four) element(s)?

Published by josh dippold


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