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Enlightenment Questions - Question From R Kondur
QUESTION (Why did Buddha Teach that the Earth was Flat)
When he was fully enlightened, it is known that the Buddha saw the entire universe with his third eye, and even astoundingly the Buddha was capable to travel to the Tavatimsa Deva realm and taught the Abhidhamma continuously for 3 months to an audience of Devas including his passed-away mother. While Buddha was so capable to see and travel through the entire universe, how come Buddha did not know that the earth was round and earth was revolving around the sun, but not the other way around? Why did Buddha teach, after his enlightenment, that the earth was flat? Why didn't he know that the earth was round or elliptical or even more precise shape?
It is difficult for me to answer as you did not point out which buddha is it.
Secondly, the way that the Buddha walked seemed flat. If he had had a chance to sail Atlantic Ocean he would have doubted or judged the Earth might be round. However he only saw the flat roads, he could tell the Earth was flat.
First of all , I need to verify the truth of your question about what the Buddha said and did. Could you send me some information for that?
The world of living one is different from the dead,so it is impossible for human to travel the world of the dead.
Further response from R.Kondur
I have given all the details in the following paragraphs with supporting links.
For me, Buddha means Siddhardha Gautama or the Sakyamuni Buddha who was born in India in 563 BC.
I have read a statement by Dr. Jeffrey Hopkins in a discussion forum:
43rd paragraph of the discussion forum:
Jeffrey Hopkins: Certainly, skepticism is still required, at least in the type of scriptures I am used to. Buddha taught, for example, that the earth is flat. This has been contradicted by direct perception. Accepting all of it, then, strikes me as difficult and opposes a basic Buddhist attitude of questioning and skepticism. I think faith and skepticism can fit together in the same person.
Biography of Dr. Jeffrey Hopkins is given on a website.
BIOGRAPHY: Jeffrey Hopkins is Professor Emeritus of Tibetan and Buddhist Studies at the University of Virginia, where he has taught Tibetan Studies and Tibetan language since 1973. At the University of Virginia he served as Director of the Center for South Asian Studies for twelve years and founded a program in Buddhist Studies. His more than twenty-five books include Emptiness in the Mind-Only School (1999), Cultivating Compassion (2001), and, as translator-editor, His Holiness the Dalai Lama's How to Practice (2002). From 1979 to 1989 he served as His Holiness's chief interpreter into English.
Jeffrey Hopkins, Ph.D., served as the chief interpreter to the Dalai Lama for a decade. A Buddhist scholar-practitioner and the author of more than twenty-five books and translations, he is Professor of Tibetan and Buddhist Studies at the University of Virginia, where he founded the largest academic program of Tibetan Buddhism studies in the West. He lives in Charlottesville.
Alan Watts (a famous philosopher) also describes the Buddha as Flat-Earthist
Refer To 37th Paragraph of the Article on a website.
37th Paragraph (Buddha a flat-earthist)
 This method of dialogue is not simply a discussion between teacher and student. The teacher imposes a discipline of meditation, prayer, etc. to make the student experience reality—without conceptions, beliefs or desires that maya creates—firsthand. An individual cannot be simply told that there is or is no ego—he must experience it through discipline for himself. Watts gives an example of how someone who believes the Earth is flat cannot possibly be talked out of believing the supposition because the flat-Earthist says, "Look out the window and see, it's obvious—it looks flat." The only way to convince him is to literally bring him to the edge that he believes exists. But to get to the edge, the individual needs to use a discipline, a method, so that he does not walk around in circles. So the flat-Earthist is led by the teacher along Latitude 40, for example, strictly and rigorously. When he goes around the world and winds up at the place where he started, the individual sees that the Earth is at least cylindrical—and then go through other rigors to find out the Earth is indeed round.
Alan Watts Biography is given on a website.
Alan Watts (January 6, 1915 – November 16, 1973) was a philosopher, writer, speaker, and expert in comparative religion. He wrote over twenty-five books and numerous articles on subjects such as personal identity, the true nature of reality, consciousness and the pursuit of happiness, relating his experience to scientific knowledge and to the teachings of Eastern and Western religions or philosophies (Zen Buddhism, Taoism, Christianity, Hinduism).
Also Refer to the Following Paragraph in Which the Buddha Explained His Disciples about His Abilities and Strengths:
Book: The greatest Man Who Ever Lived: The Supreme Buddha, Chapter 20, Page 124
by Weragoda Sarada Maha Thera
Buddha said: "O Monks, I can utilize all the psychic powers I like. I can appear as many though I am just one. I appear as two persons, and then merge into one. I will appear to be seen by all but I can remain unseen by anyone. I can go through walls, fortresses, rocks, without touching just as moving through the air. I can go inside water and also on water. I can travel through the air like bird. I can walk in the air as if walking on earth. I can touch the sun and the moon with my hands. I can extend my divine eye as far as I want "
Also Refer to the 3rd Paragraph from a website.
According to tradition, the Buddha ascended to the Tavatimsa Deva realm and expounded the Abhidhammma continuously for 3 months to an audience of Devas (celestial beings) including his previous mother. Then, a question was asked in the commentary how the Buddha managed to maintain his body without food for three months in the celestial abode. The answer was given as follows: The Buddha is the Supreme one, who knows everything in the Universe without exception. That's why, he knows the time what he needs to do, for example, the time to eat, to teach, etc. The Buddha created another body, which was identical to himself and took over his teaching when the he went collecting his alms in the human world.
The aforementioned articles give evidence that the Buddha was a flat-earthist
and at the same time he could travel throughout the universe and can even touch the sun and moon.
Why didn't he know or feel that the Earth was round?
How did Jeffrey Hopkins or Alan Watts know that "Buddha taught that the earth was flat?"
Where did they get this information?
Do you know the correct reference of any Sutra number cited in any Buddhist scriptures?
Did Buddha really teach that the earth was flat?
When he was fully enlightened, it is known that the Buddha saw the entire universe
with his third eye, and even astoundingly the Buddha was capable to travel to
the Tavatimsa Deva realm and taught the Abhidhamma continuously for 3 months
to an audience of Devas including his passed-away mother. So why didn't Buddha know
that the earth was round or elliptical or even more precise shape?
Thank you for your attention into the matter.
P.S.: I have a very strange life experience. I have accomplished a lot in this life.
I am an excellent person with pure heart but I always encounter wicked and demonized people.
Would you like to know more about me and my blockbuster life-experiences?
Can you tell me why my life is so tough? Am I enveloped by demons?
Reply from Tathagata
Buddhas never say something with irresponsibility. Even though those claims are in the books that you have read, the evidences of that those are Buddha's teachings are nowhere. If Buddha had told them you should not call him a Buddha and he was a person who attained the position of a Buddha. I believe that Gautama was a Buddha and I can tell that he did not give those kinds of teachings. His teachings came from what he saw, so he explained continuously about the principle and questions. I found that they were absolutely correct even from the view of today's world.
You should not believe in every words of writers. They try to take reader's interest and ,in many cases, describe things as real but they do not exist though.
They simply described such things from their own imagination. If you can understand in this way it must be a right answer.