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By Ven. S. Dhammika

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This process of dying and being reborn will continue until the conditions that cause it, craving and ignorance, cease. When they do, instead of being reborn, the mind attains a state called Nirvana and this is the ultimate goal of Buddhism and the purpose of life. QUESTION: How does the mind go from one body to another? ANSWER: Think of it being like radio waves. The radio waves, which are not made up of words and music but energy at different frequencies, are transmitted, travel through space, 34 are attracted to and picked up by the receiver from where they are broadcast as words and music.

Most people, however, are reborn as human beings. QUESTION: So we are not determined by our kamma. We can change it. ANSWER: Of course we can. That is why one of the steps on the Noble Eightfold Path is Perfect Effort. If depends on our sincerity, how much energy we exert and how strong the habit is. But it is true that some people simply go through life under the influence of their past habits, without making an effort 36 to change them and falling victim to these unpleasant results. Such people will continue to suffer unless they change their negative habits.

Buddhism, on the other hand, teaches that to be a truly balanced and complete individual, you must develop both wisdom and compassion. And because it is not dogmatic but based on experience, Buddhism has nothing to fear from science. 50 QUESTION: So what, according to Buddhism, is wisdom? ANSWER: The highest wisdom is seeing that in reality all phenomena are incomplete, impermanent, and not self. This understanding is totally freeing and leads to the great security and happiness which is called Nirvana.

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