Causality: The Central Philosophy of Buddhism by David J. Kalupahana

By David J. Kalupahana

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To understand the full significance of the statement above, it should be examined in the light of the rest of M akkhali G osala’s teaching. We have already seen that the Svabhavavadins advocated plurality and the classification o f this plurality according to the resemblance the elements bear to one another. 66 Moreover, Buddhagosa does not consider the words satta, pana, bhuta and jiva, occurring in the statement of M akkhali’s teaching, as syn­ onyms but as references to different types of existence: satta pana bhuta jiva = = = = camels, buffaloes, donkeys, etc.

2) Accounts in the histories of philosophical systems such as the Saddarsanasamuccaya and Sarvadarsanasamgraha, which, though their authors may belong to a particular faith, present the views o f the Materialists as a comprehensive whole. In this category may be included the account of Materialism found in the Santi-parvan of the Mahabharata ,4 (3) The Tattvopaplavasimha of Jayarasi Bhatta is a unique work, being the only treatise on M aterialism belonging to a Materialistic school. There is no doubt that the information supplied by the sources of the first category is the earliest.

As for the other beings who came later, they thought that the being who appeared first was their creator. This story exposes the fallacy of the idea of creation o f the world 22 by an almighty G od and perhaps also indicts the view that the prior or the preceding is always the cause of the subsequent. The Buddha’s objection to the view that the world of beings, with their happiness and suffering, is created by an om nipotent and omniscient G od is based mainly on two grounds. First, it denies the doctrine of the moral responsibility of man, and second, it is detrimental to the religious life.

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