The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum (Archive Board)
May 18, 2022, 07:59:20 pm *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: This is our Read Only Archive Board (closed to posting July 2011). Join our new vBulletin board!
  Portal   Forum   Help Rules Search Chat (Mux) Articles Login Register   *

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
May 18, 2022, 07:59:20 pm

Login with username, password and session length
The Cauldron's server is expensive and requires monthly payments. Please become a Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor if you can. Donations are needed every month. Without member support, we can't afford the server.
TC Staff
Important Information about this Archive Board
This message board is The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum's SMF Archive Board. It is closed to new memberships and to posting, but there are over 250,000 messages here that you can still search and read -- many full of interesting and useful information. (This board was open from February 2007 through June 2011).

Our new vBulletin discussion board is located at -- if you would like to participate in discussions like those you see here, please visit our new vBulletin message board, register an account and join in our discussions. We hope you will find the information in this message archive useful and will consider joining us on our new board.
Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Down
  Add bookmark  |  Print  
Author Topic: The existence of alien life and the consequences it might have on religion  (Read 12049 times)
Last Login:May 12, 2011, 05:33:20 am
United States United States

Religion: unsure
Posts: 37

Blog entries (0)

« Reply #13: March 21, 2011, 07:58:25 pm »

  The Buddha taught the existence of other world-systems with their own suns, moons, and oceans, harboring other intelligent beings.  He said that our world is included in a system of 10,000 worlds, one of an infinite number of world-systems.  He went on to say that Buddhas just like him sometimes appear on these worlds and teach the inhabitants the Dhamma (objective spiritual teaching and absolute Law).  Sometimes they do not appear at all and the inhabitants suffer greatly for it, living through what is called a dark cosmic aeon.
  Buddhist cosmology would be a helpful reference to this question.  And here I will be careful to make the distinction between the cosmology of Tibetan Buddhism and the cosmology of other countries that adopted Buddhism, and the cosmology presented by the Buddha.  It's also important to note that the Buddhistic sects also honor and consider the original cosmology to be legitimate.

Very true. Since Buddhism evolved from Hinduism to a certain extent, much of what Hinduism teaches about a plurality of gods and the existences of other worlds apply to Buddhist thought as much as it applies to Hindu thought. For that reason, I placed Buddhism in the sort of middle ground between the two extremes because, as you've said, a large part of Buddhist thought would remain largely unaltered, though various Buddhist sects might have more difficulty than others reconciling their specific teachings to the new reality. Still, most of these changes would probably be fairly minor and wouldn't necessarily change the doctrines and theology of the religion to any significant degree.

As to the various comments people have made about Judaism, I can't really debate them one way or the other. There's a significant conflict between what Jews traditionally believe to be true and what modern efforts in archeology, Biblical criticism, genetics, and other related fields seem to show about the history of that religion. I personally believe science over theology in this regard, but anyone who accepts the traditional view of Judaism to be true is going to discount any evidence that doesn't support traditional orthodox views on the history of the religion, so there's really not much room for debate except, perhaps, amongst the most liberal Jews within movements like Reform Judaism or possibly Jewish flavored Neo-Pagan movements who accept some of the traditional views espoused by the Torah and the oral law, but also accept many of the claims of scientists as well.

Heck, I bet my sister, a hard-core Catholic, would have trouble with the first Commandment that you mentioned;  that no other gods existed. To her, they'd be "Demons."

That's an interesting statement because it's not a reaction I originally considered, but I think it's definitely spot on. Many very conservative Christians probably would have that exact reaction. That is how many conservative churches already react to things on Earth that don't fit their world view. Fossils that provide evidence that evolution is true and the world is much older than the Bible says? Must be the work of Satan and demons. Archeology disproves the historicity of the Bible? Must be the work of Satan and demons. Evidence for other gods and/or the validity of the beliefs of other religions? Must be the work of Satan and demons. Evidence that ghosts exist? Must be the work of Satan and demons. It raises an interesting point that seems very relevant to this topic. Religions, especially the more conservative variants thereof, can develop various coping mechanism to deal with things that are outside of their worldviews. We can even observe this is religions like Wicca. The more traditional varieties of Wicca still tend to accept most of the belief that Wicca is the modern remnant of a pan-European witch cult. History and archeology doesn't seem to agree, but some Wiccans refuse to accept that and will occasionally go to almost absurd lengths to invent historical connections that seem to still support this idea.

So, ultimately, it is very difficult to anticipate how a particular religion might react to anything, which, I think, is very relevant to the topic at hand and makes speculation of this nature very difficult, but also very interesting.

Welcome, Guest!
You will need to register and/or login to participate in our discussions.

Read our Rules and Policies and the Quoting Guidelines.

Help Fund Our Server? Donate to Lyricfox's Cancer Fund?

Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Up
  Add bookmark  |  Print  
Jump to:  
  Portal   Forum   Help Rules Search Chat (Mux) Articles Login Register   *

* Share this topic...
In a forum
In a site/blog

Related Topics
Subject Started by Replies Views Last post
Planes of existence « 1 2 3 »
Philosophy and Metaphysics
Juniper 35 16095 Last post March 22, 2011, 09:31:28 pm
by son of dhamma
The consequences of following your path...
Faith in Everyday Life
Waldfrau 13 7165 Last post October 21, 2008, 12:53:47 am
by RhiannonWhiteMare
Wicca and the existence of creatures most would think are mythological?
Magic and the Occult for Beginners
omera 7 3465 Last post September 29, 2009, 05:19:37 pm
by SunflowerP
What role should religion play in a modern life? « 1 2 »
Philosophy and Metaphysics
BGMarc 28 11746 Last post November 16, 2009, 10:44:51 am
by Rowanfox
consequences, and when things go wrong or not as planned. « 1 2 3 »
Chaos Magic
Syncearae 31 15284 Last post January 18, 2011, 02:53:49 pm
by Syncearae
EU Cookie Notice: This site uses cookies. By using this site you consent to their use.

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2006-2008, Simple Machines
TinyPortal v0.9.8 © Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.089 seconds with 34 queries.