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Posts Tagged ‘Freedom’

The Buddha and Free Will

What might the Buddha have thought about free will? To answer that question we’ll look at the history of the concept in Western philosophy, and then consider how it applies to early Buddhism. We will find that the Buddha would have accepted a couple of related senses of the phrase. Suttas mentioned: The Characteristic of…

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The Buddha's Charter of Free Inquiry

The Buddha’s discourse to the Kālāmas outlines a charter of free inquiry. It strikes us today as expressing a very modern approach to the world. We’ll look at how that is, and its down-to-earth take on ethics and knowledge. Kesaputtiya (the Discourse to the Kālāmas) Soma Thera: The Buddha’s Charter of Free Inquiry Check out…

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On Supramundane Freedom

In my last post we looked a bit at mundane freedom: what it is, and what it is not. We saw that mundane freedom involved volitional formations (saṇkhāras) within a more-or-less deterministic causal nexus. What made the will free is that it was constituted by our desires, rather than by those of another. That is,…

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On Mundane Freedom

Ye dharmā hetuprabhavā hetuṃ teṣāṃ tathāgataḥ hyavadat teṣāṃ ca yo nirodha evaṃ vādī mahāśramaṇaḥ Of those things that arise from a cause, the Tathāgata has told the cause, and also what their cessation is: this is the doctrine of the Great Recluse. Vinaya, Mahavagga, I.23.5 “The most famous statement in Buddhism” — Donald Lopez, Buddhism…

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