Samsara, Karma, and Self-Enlightenment: A Buddhist Perspective on Mo Yan’s Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out

Omid Akhavan

Abstract


Buddhism may best be defined as a path of practice and spiritual improvement leading to insight into the true nature of reality. Buddhist beliefs and practices intend to change individuals so as to develop the qualities of consciousness, benevolence, and wisdom. The experience developed within the Buddhist tradition over thousands of years has made a unique asset for each one of human beings who wish to pursue a path—a path which ultimately culminates in Enlightenment. The theory of Karma is the central tenet of that ethical path in Buddhism. According to this theory, actions good or bad which drives samsara (cycle of existence) for creatures, produce their consequences in the life of the individuals. The present study undertakes to examine the theory of karma in Mo Yan’s Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out. It likewise demonstrates that human beings can liberate themselves from samsara by following the Buddhist path which helps them to attain salvation and self-enlightenment that are considered to be the ultimate goal in an individual’s
life.


Keywords


Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out; Buddhism perspective; Samsara; Karma; Mo Yan; Self-enlightenment

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/n

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