Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

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Ervin
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Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Ervin » Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:08 am

Hie everyone.

I was wandering if demons mentioned in Buddhist scriptures are simply the bad karma that we experience?

Now, if our minds create karma, then karma would "know" our wrongdoings, our deepest dark fears, and our negative actions. And it would be all in our alaya consciousness.

Thanks

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conebeckham
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by conebeckham » Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:38 am

Karma doesn't "know" anything. I think demons are, ultimately speaking, bad karma, though--or--negative traits, manifestations of habit....
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")

Ervin
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Ervin » Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:42 am

Thanks for the response conebekham, I didn't mean literally know, but metaphorically.

Thanks

Punya
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Punya » Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:36 am

I just came across this, Ervin, which might be of interest. It is from the intro by Professor Robert Thurman to his translation of The Teaching of Vimalakīrti Sutra, which was recently revised and published by 84,000:
Even the māras, or devils, that plague the various universes are said to be bodhisattvas dwelling in inconceivable liberation—playing the devil, as it were, in order to develop living beings.
http://read.84000.co/#UT22084-060-005/introduction
We abide nowhere. We possess nothing.
~Chatral Rinpoche

Ervin
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Ervin » Fri Jul 07, 2017 9:01 am

Thanks Punya.

If bodhisattva was to pretend he or she is a demon, wouldn't he or she be breaking the precept/s of let's say not lying?

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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Grigoris » Fri Jul 07, 2017 10:12 am

Ervin wrote:Thanks Punya.

If bodhisattva was to pretend he or she is a demon, wouldn't he or she be breaking the precept/s of let's say not lying?
Bodhisattvas HAVE TO break the lower precepts if it is for the benefit of other sentient beings. They are not interested in amassing merit/avoiding demerit for themselves, their priority is other beings, not their own liberation. This is one of the reasons it takes so long for them to reach liberation.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Astus
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Astus » Fri Jul 07, 2017 11:05 am

Ervin wrote:I was wandering if demons mentioned in Buddhist scriptures are simply the bad karma that we experience?
All painful events are products of bad karma, from annoying neighbours to the hell realms.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"

Ervin
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Ervin » Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:35 pm

Thanks everyone.

I understand that all bad experiences are a product of bad karma, but the experiences where it seems like you are being tested, which seem as it is a intelligent being doing you harm are the experiences that I wander if they are just bad karma making it appear as demonic or are there actual demons who are acting out your karma?

On the other hand, I still can't believe that bodhisattvas would use deception in order o teach a lesson.

Thanks

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Vasana
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Vasana » Sat Jul 15, 2017 1:14 pm

Ervin wrote:Thanks everyone.

I understand that all bad experiences are a product of bad karma, but the experiences where it seems like you are being tested, which seem as it is a intelligent being doing you harm are the experiences that I wander if they are just bad karma making it appear as demonic or are there actual demons who are acting out your karma?

On the other hand, I still can't believe that bodhisattvas would use deception in order o teach a lesson.

Thanks
Although all helpful or harmful experiences come from karma, different systems elaborate on the other classes of sentient-beings who we're unable to usually perceive. Some of these aren't demons per-se, but can be associated with them since they may cause harm. Equally, they may not be gods/devas but can be associated with them by label if they choose to help. Devas and Nagas are examples of beings who might help or interfere and you can find these even in the sutra teachings. Some are fond of the Dharma and some aren't. It's good not to get too paranoid and tense about help/harm though. Practice well and supplicate the Buddhas,Bodhisattvas and you'll be fine.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

pael
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by pael » Sat Jul 15, 2017 2:32 pm

Astus wrote:
Ervin wrote:I was wandering if demons mentioned in Buddhist scriptures are simply the bad karma that we experience?
All painful events are products of bad karma, from annoying neighbours to the hell realms.
Events or experiences? Loud sounds disturbs me very much, but everyone I know loves loud sounds. Is this karma or what?
May all beings be free from suffering and causes of suffering

The Artis Magistra
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by The Artis Magistra » Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:19 am

Hi. The question asks if the demons mentioned in Buddhism are just bad karma. Many modern Buddhists are shying away to admitting to things they hesitate to believe. The demons mentioned in Buddhism were often imagined to be real sentient beings like you or me. Sometimes things would be mentioned which were metaphorical, but much of the time demons were being presented as very much totally real beings that were or are totally real.

There is no reason to be shy about this. People may ridicule for believing in things they don't believe in.

This is a Mahayana forum. It appears that the Mahayana Buddhists of the past believed in real and literal Bodhisattvas, Demons, Hungry Ghosts, Experiences, Realms, Creatures, and many things. These things were not apparently at that time considered mumbo jumbo or justified through psycho-babble apologetics.

If you have not met a demon, it does not mean demons don't or never have existed. Just be grateful you have not experienced such a thing and see if you can avoid it.

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Astus
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Astus » Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:18 pm

pael wrote:Events or experiences? Loud sounds disturbs me very much, but everyone I know loves loud sounds. Is this karma or what?
Events are experiences. Liking something is taking it as good, disliking something is taking it as bad. That's how one's mental conditioning (karma) defines all perceptions.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"

Punya
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Punya » Sun Jul 16, 2017 9:50 pm

On the other hand, I still can't believe that bodhisattvas would use deception in order o teach a lesson.
Skilful means. Bodhisattvas will use whatever method is appropriate to the situation, including lying or even killing. Precepts and such are just methods to keep us ordinary beings out of trouble as much as possible. Bodhisattvas have the wisdom to cut through such methods when, and if, warranted. We are too caught by emotions to do this skilfully.
We abide nowhere. We possess nothing.
~Chatral Rinpoche

omnifriend
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by omnifriend » Mon Jul 17, 2017 3:19 am

I am familiar with schizophrenia where many schizophrenics think they have a demon inside them. It's common that schizophrenics are very intelligent people and a lot I know are spiritual. Do you think that the demons that the mentally ill possibly possess are bodhisaatvas testing their character to guide them towards enlightenment or spiritual progress? I have heard the phrase demons polish the path. Thanks.

Jeff
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Re: Are demons mentioned in Buddhism actually just bad karma?

Post by Jeff » Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:50 pm

Ervin wrote:Hie everyone.

I was wandering if demons mentioned in Buddhist scriptures are simply the bad karma that we experience?

Now, if our minds create karma, then karma would "know" our wrongdoings, our deepest dark fears, and our negative actions. And it would be all in our alaya consciousness.

Thanks
There are such things as demons (negative entities) that exist. But mostly what people experience are just deep subconscious fears.

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