Practise to recall past incarnations

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Sentient Light
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Re: Practise to recall past incarnations

Post by Sentient Light » Fri Jul 27, 2018 2:30 pm

Anders wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:51 am
I don't know why past life recall gets such a bad rep in modern Buddhism. I think the book referenced above by ajahn brahm gives good advice:
I've just finished reading through the Dirgha Agama and one thing this recension of the EBTs keeps hammering on is that arhatship always results in the recollection of past lives. I don't recall offhand (it's been over ten years) if the Pali Nikayas are as adamant about it, but I don't believe so. These texts however treat it very specifically: an arhat always develops the siddhis of recollection of past lives and knowledge of the cessation of the fetters.
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Seeker12
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Re: Practise to recall past incarnations

Post by Seeker12 » Fri Jul 27, 2018 6:23 pm

Sentient Light wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 2:30 pm

I've just finished reading through the Dirgha Agama and one thing this recension of the EBTs keeps hammering on is that arhatship always results in the recollection of past lives. I don't recall offhand (it's been over ten years) if the Pali Nikayas are as adamant about it, but I don't believe so. These texts however treat it very specifically: an arhat always develops the siddhis of recollection of past lives and knowledge of the cessation of the fetters.
I believe it is not entirely explicit in the Pali Canon. That's interesting that it's so explicit in the Agamas.
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TheSynergist
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Re: Practise to recall past incarnations

Post by TheSynergist » Sat Jul 28, 2018 11:51 pm

Seeker12 wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 6:23 pm
Sentient Light wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 2:30 pm

I've just finished reading through the Dirgha Agama and one thing this recension of the EBTs keeps hammering on is that arhatship always results in the recollection of past lives. I don't recall offhand (it's been over ten years) if the Pali Nikayas are as adamant about it, but I don't believe so. These texts however treat it very specifically: an arhat always develops the siddhis of recollection of past lives and knowledge of the cessation of the fetters.
I believe it is not entirely explicit in the Pali Canon. That's interesting that it's so explicit in the Agamas.
Fascinating! In case you're curious, there is an article related to this by Tse-Fu Kuan:https://www.academia.edu/11788537/The_P ... by_wisdom_

It's about the Pavarana Sutta (SN 8.7). The Pali version and most of the Agama parallels speak of a group of 500 (or 499) arhats, only a minority of whom have the "three knowledges" (one of which is past life recall). However, the EA version doesn't say they are all Arahats, or say anything about different "types" of Arahats, just that they are at least stream winners. Tse-Fu Kuan suggests the EA version may be the most accurate in this regard, and that over time the definition of arhat might have been watered down over time to include more people. Makes sense to me --- if the bar for arahatship was lowered over time, I can see why later Buddhists would become dissatisfied by these so-called "arhats" and seek Buddhahood instead (forming the genesis of Mahayana).

The Susima Sutta is also sometimes used to argue that Arhats don't all have past life knowledge, but that interpretation only holds water if we assume the monks who make the claim are honest (I see no reason to assume they are).

FWIW, the Theri/Theragatha speaks quite a bit about monks and nuns obtaining the three knowledges.

SilenceMonkey
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Re: Practise to recall past incarnations

Post by SilenceMonkey » Tue Jul 31, 2018 11:06 am

If you want to train this, you can go to the Pa Auk Sayadaw tradition. They have this in their curriculum. They don't practice vipassana until they've achieved the 4th form jhana (or maybe it was one of the formless jhanas), and only then do they start to contemplate dependent arising. That's when the ability begins to manifest.

Many Buddhists talk about the trap of siddhis, but after hearing from some people in this tradition, this ability seems to me a good idea. The reasons are two. When you can see into past karma, you will know the causes for your current obstacles and so can be your own doctor and will know how to treat the illness accordingly. (Without this knowledge, we'd remain suffering from karma we don't understand.) The other benefit is that you would be able to see your positive karmic connections with teachers and practices, you'll be able to consciously "pick up where you left off" in a past life.

Maha-thera Ariyadhamma studied under Pa Auk and then took the Pa Auk method to Sri Lanka and opened some schools there. He's quite interesting to me because he made the bodhisattva vow many life-times ago, which karmically prevented him from entering Nirvana. So his group has Theravada methods, but many practitioners there have mahayana spirit and motivation.

Motova
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Re: Practise to recall past incarnations

Post by Motova » Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:15 pm

The best way to develop a photographic memory and recall past incarnations is to practice Tibetan Buddhism. Specifically, the higher tantras so one can receive dream yoga teachings.
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

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