A reader writes:
Message: Hey Brian, really enjoy all the podcasts and this site. I have been studying Buddhism now for almost two years and my life gets better on a daily basis.
My question is : it seems that our purpose is to fully awaken and be free of attachment. Well it seems that no matter how conscious or aware we become living in a form world we will most likely be attached to something at our time of death. That being so and we get sent back for another round at life here. Do we lose the level of awareness that we left before? I know when we are born we are not conditioned and we are totally conscious. Is our destiny dependent on the whole society being more evolved towards awakening?? Because if not we could have a thousand more lifetimes here. Am I making any sense? If so what’s your take on it.
Do we lose the level of awareness that we left before? Is our existence “Reset” every time around? Consciously? Yes. Karmically? No. You don’t know how enlightened or ignorant you were in your previous lives. Your karma, however, stays with you. If you were near-enlightened before, you should have come back in a (karmic at least) condition that will let you continue that growth. It’s up to you whether you continue forward or take steps backwards.
Are we dependent on our society awakening? Partially. It’ not an individual requirement, but as society evolves, and the overall enlightenment of people rises, I would think it should become easier in general. “A rising tide lifts all boats.” That being said, awakening or Enlightenment is in internal, individual thing, and even if everyone else on Earth were Enlightened, you would still have to make some effort to join them.
Readers, what say you?