posted on Mar, 20 2009 @ 03:13 PM
Originally posted by berenike
Another thought - what about self-sacrifice? Are people who die for the common good, or for a cause, subject to the same penalties as a suicide?
I have thought about that once too. I believe a soul is eternal and indestructible but I also believe in free will and choices (even if it is my last
one) and realizing I am here for all eternity I would do everything possible to become aware of what that means. In other words take to the example of
guru's, lama's and yogi's who are said to be are aware of dying and existing in the here after.
If such things are possible I can see myself trying very hard to becoming aware, exist in the hereafter for a long time doing all sorts of things
which I probably can't even imagine now, meeting an uncountable number of beings, being reborn again for many many times (maybe in many different
worlds), visiting all kinds of places both with suffering and without. I would be able to remember them all too (if a soul is infinite it should
probably contain the memories of all lifetimes as well).
But at some time I would without a doubt want to end it, do something for the last time and that could only be choosing my soul to dissolve. It might
be it dissolves into nothingness but it might also be it dissolves in every other soul or maybe a source. It might even be something like a new
universe for other beings to inhabit, maybe that is the big bang.
I remember reading about a bodhisattva* who walked into a tiger's den because the cubs were hungry and offered his body for them to eat. *It
might have been an incarnation of The Buddha - it's a long time since I read the story.
Those are the Jataka tales, about the previous lives of the Buddha Gautama. There are slight cultural differences of that story where the Buddha to be
was a prince travelling with his brothers (others say he was a guru or renunciate travelling with disciples) either way stumbling upon the dying
mother tiger and her cubs he threw himself in front of the tigress (some version says he even took his own life by cutting his throat, the tigress was
too weakened others say the fierce tigress violently killed him). By doing this he showed the supreme sacrifice. Some versions also point out how he
repayed an old karmic debt or how the cub was going to be his future son.
Being critical myself I suppose it would have made more sense to go back to town, get some food and return, if the tigress dies while doing so taking
care of the cubs. Ofcourse one could further argue what kind of food the bodhisattva should have brought as a tiger is a carnivore and to take the
flesh of an animal to feed another animal would not be correct. But in that case, it would make sense the world should be herbivore only and it would
be better to let the tigers die. I've also further thought of the sutra, what if the cubs grow up to be tigers then kill and eat people? It sounds a
bit silly for a human to feed himself to tigers which then feed on other people.
[edit on 20-3-2009 by Dragonfly79]