LE LIBRE ARBITRE en bouddhisme
cette question du libre arbitre est délicate.
Si on admet qu'il n'y a aucun libre arbitre, alors il n'y a plus d'effort à faire, plus
de chemin à parcourir, tout est écrit à l'avance, ce qui n'est pas conforme
à la doctrine.
Si on admet un total libre arbitre, on nie la loi de cause à
effet puisque chaque instant de conscience est conditionné par le kamma.
Entre ces deux extrêmes, il y a une liberté limitée, un arbitre pas vraiment
libre car conditionné, mais permettant certains choix qui conditionneront
eux-même notre situation future... (Je précise qu'il s'agit là des mes vues
"In hearing that Buddhism teaches that everything is determined by
conditions, someone might come to the conclusion that Buddhism teaches some
sort of fatalism, or that man has no free will, or that will is not free.
Now, with regard to the two questions: (1) "Has man a free will?" and (2)
"Is will free?" the Buddhist will say that both these questions are to be
rejected for being wrongly put, and therefore unanswerable.
The first question "Has man a free will?" is to be rejected for the reason
that, beside these ever-changing mental and physical phenomena, in the
absolute sense no such thing or entity can be found that we could call
"man," so that "man" as such is merely a name without any reality.
The second question "Is will free?" is to be rejected for the reason that
"will" is only a momentary mental phenomenon, just like feeling,
consciousness, etc., and thus does not yet exist before it arises, and that
therefore of a non-existent thing - of a thing which is not - one could,
properly speaking, not ask whether it is free or unfree.
The only admissible question would be: "Is the arising of will independent of conditions, or is it conditioned?"
But the same question would equally apply also to all the
other mental phenomena, as well as to all the physical phenomena, in other
words, to everything and every occurrence whatever. And the answer would be:
Be it "will," or "feeling," or any other mental or physical phenomenon, the
arising of anything whatsoever depends on conditions; and without these
conditions, nothing can ever arise or enter into existence.
According to Buddhism, everything mental and physical happens in accordance
with laws and conditions; and if it were otherwise, chaos and blind chance
But such a thing is impossible and contradicts all laws of
Et Mahasi Sayadaw :
" If the present life is totally conditioned or wholly controlled by our
past actions, then certainly Karma is tantamount to fatalism or determinism
or predestination. If this were true, free will would be an absurdity. Life
would be purely mechanistic, not much different from a machine. Being
created by an Almighty God who controls our destinies and predetermines our
future, or being produced by an irresistible Karma that completely
determines our fate and controls our life's course, independent of any free
action on our part, is essentially the same. The only difference lies in the
two words God and Karma. One could easily be substituted for the other,
because the ultimate operation of both forces would be identical.
Such a fatalistic doctrine is not the Buddhist law of Karma.
According to Buddhism, there are five orders or processes (niyama) which
operate in the physical and mental realms.
1.. Utu Niyama - physical inorganic order, e.g. seasonal phenomena of
winds and rains. The unerring order of seasons, characteristic seasonal
changes and events, causes of winds and rains, nature of heat, etc., all
belong to this group.
2.. Bija Niyama - order of germs and seeds (physical organic order), e.g.
rice produced from rice-seed, sugary taste from sugar-cane or honey,
peculiar characteristics of certain fruits, etc. The scientific theory of
cells and genes and the physical similarity of twins may be ascribed to this
3.. Karma Niyama - order of act and result, e.g., desirable and
undesirable acts produce corresponding good and bad results. As surely as
water seeks its own level so does Karma, given opportunity, produce its
inevitable result, not in the form of a reward or punishment but as an
innate sequence. This sequence of deed and effect is as natural and
necessary as the way of the sun and the moon.
4.. Dhamma Niyama - order of the norm, e.g., the natural phenomena
occurring at the advent of a Bodhisattva in his last birth. Gravitation and
other similar laws of nature. The natural reason for being good and so
forth, may be included in this group.
5.. Citta Niyama - order or mind or psychic law, e.g., processes of
consciousness, arising and perishing of consciousness, constituents of
consciousness, power of mind, etc., including telepathy, telaesthesia,
retro-cognition, premonition, clairvoyance, clairaudience, thought-reading
and such other psychic phenomena which are inexplicable to modern science.
Every mental or physical phenomenon could be explained by these
all-embracing five orders or processes which are laws in themselves. Karma
as such is only one of these five orders. Like all other natural laws they
demand no lawgiver.
Of these five, the physical inorganic order and the order of the norm are
more or less mechanistic, though they can be controlled to some extent by
human ingenuity and the power of mind. For example, fire normally burns, and
extreme cold freezes, but man has walked scatheless over fire and meditated
naked on Himalayan snows; horticulturists have worked marvels with flowers
and fruits; Yogis have performed levitation. Psychic law is equally
mechanistic, but Buddhist training aims at control of mind, which is
possible by right understanding and skilful volition. Karma law operates
quite automatically and, when the Karma is powerful, man cannot interfere
with its inexorable result though he may desire to do so; but here also
right understanding and skilful volition can accomplish much and mould the
future. Good Karma, persisted in, can thwart the reaping of bad Karma, or as
some Western scholars prefer to say 'action influence', is certainly an
intricate law whose working is fully comprehended only by a Buddha. The
Buddhist aims at the final destruction of all Karma."
Sébastien Billard 2.11.2006
>cette distinction implique donc l'existence du LIBRE-ARBITRE (...) si on
>adopte cette façon de
>voir les choses, alors il n'y a plus que des cause NATURELLES, et le
>libre-arbitre est une illusion.