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Examples to understand rebirth

38 The Foundation of Buddhist Practice

Part of an ongoing series of teachings (retreat and Friday) based on the book The Foundation of Buddhist Practice, second volume in “The Library of Wisdom and Compassion” series by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Venerable Thubten Chodron.

  • Meditation on having a precious human life or a future life that is different from the present life
  • Are all actions of dedicating useful things for the deceased meaningless?
  • Importance of our own actions to reduce afflictions and engage in virtue
  • Is it certain that heavy negative actions lead to unfortunate rebirths?
  • Regular purification practice to weaken the potential of negative actions
  • Refuting two extreme views of existence with regards to rebirth
  • Is rebirth influenced by an external creator, our wish, or is it without a cause?
  • Principles for describing the rebirth process based on continuity and causes

The Foundation of Buddhist Practice 38: Examples To Understand Rebirth (download)

Contemplation points

  1. What are the causes for a precious human life and what can you do to create those causes now?
  2. The best way to help ourselves and others in preparing for a good rebirth is to do purification practice. What actions are you doing to purify karma that could propel you to an unfortunate state?
  3. How would you encourage others, those who have and those who have not met the Buddhist teachings, to practice purification?
Venerable Thubten Chodron

Venerable Chodron emphasizes the practical application of Buddha’s teachings in our daily lives and is especially skilled at explaining them in ways easily understood and practiced by Westerners. She is well known for her warm, humorous, and lucid teachings. She was ordained as a Buddhist nun in 1977 by Kyabje Ling Rinpoche in Dharamsala, India, and in 1986 she received bhikshuni (full) ordination in Taiwan. Read her full bio.