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Conciousness?

by AlanPartr
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pelastration
#73
Dec22-03, 01:46 PM
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P: 515
Originally posted by radagast
That's well said.

Onycho,
Many Buddhist teachers are clear about telling their students to avoid belief in what they (the teachers) are saying. Their words are only guide posts to help the student make their own discoveries, via meditation.

A phrase used by teachers of old to let their students know that beliefs and love of religion were dangerous and often misleading - If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. There are other implications contained in that phrase, but that should suffice for here.
Correct.
phoenixthoth
#74
Dec22-03, 03:02 PM
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P: 1,572
there's a relevant article on be-ness and consciousness to be found at the website http://www.duerden.com . the except i'm referring to can be found as the entry posted here:
http://207.70.190.98/scgi-bin/ikonbo...t=ST;f=15;t=38
on Oct. 22 2003,9:05. the post just before that from "the eye of the I" by david hawkins may also be relevant.
onycho
#75
Dec22-03, 03:32 PM
P: n/a
Originally posted by radagast
That's well said.

Onycho,
Many Buddhist teachers are clear about telling their students to avoid belief in what they (the teachers) are saying. Their words are only guide posts to help the student make their own discoveries, via meditation.

A phrase used by teachers of old to let their students know that beliefs and love of religion were dangerous and often misleading - If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. There are other implications contained in that phrase, but that should suffice for here.
I think it is best to stay away from beliefs no matter what form or variation they may take. It is very easy to make good people uneasy or take offense when our beliefs are challenged. The following is one of the best definitions of religion that I have found around the net.

Definition of religion:

http://www.tearsofllorona.com/jungdefs.html

Religion: a subjective relationship to certain metaphysical, extramundane factors. A kind of experience accorded the highest value, regardless of its contents. The essence is the person's relationship to God or salvation. Jung called them psychotherapeutic systems and believed they contained, offered a gradiant for, and transformed instinctual (hence asceticism), nonpersonal energies, giving people a cultural counterpole to blind instinct, help through difficult transitional stages, and a sense of meaning. They also help separate the growing person from his parents. For Jung, the unconscious had a religious function, and religion rests on an instinctive basis. Different from creeds, which are codified and dogmatized versions of a religious experience. Creeds usually say they have THE truth and are a collective belief. For Jung, no contradiction existed between faith and knowledge because science has nothing to say about metaphysical events, and beliefs are psychological facts that need no proof.[/quote]

The following site gives 'one' example of Buddhism as a religion but that is only the author's ideation.

http://www.zianet.com/kahlua/kahluaw...e/BUDDHISM.htm

BUDDHISM. 563 BC: the birth of Buddhism. The religion of about one eighth of the world's people, Buddhism is the name for a complex system of beliefs developed around the teachings of a single man. The Buddha, whose name was Siddhartha Gautama, lived 2,500 years ago in India.

Trying to take anything said in Buddhism as some a form of fact/dogma/doctrine or even teaching, should be done with great care. Buddhism makes use of analogy and metaphor to an extent I've only seen, within other religions, in Taoism.
Actually what you are talking about is two simple factors to any form of fact/dogma/doctrine or teaching.

Many people take religions or beliefs as either

1) Literal
vs.
2) Metaphorical

In fact, the religion of Judaism, except for some groups, see this religion as really nothing more than lessons with which to lead a life of morality and ethics. Judaism does not teach reaching a pie-in-the-sky or paradise after life but a religion of deed where one is given the free choice to lead a life or morality, ethics and charity while we are aware of this earthly existence.

Reaching some level of conscious awareness or meditation to improve one's personal health or wealth is meaningless in this religion.

I should know.....
phoenixthoth
#76
Dec22-03, 03:38 PM
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P: 1,572
the classical religions take the approach of salvation in the sense that God is "up there" somewhere in a distant heaven. the transcendence of God.

buddhism take the approach of enlightenment. while a higher power isn't specifically mentioned, it is my view that this treats God as an immanent entity; not "up there" but within as well. the immanence of God. actually, there are quotes in the bible that support this. one of them says that if you seek the kingdom of God, righteousness will be added to you and another states that the kingdom of God is within you.

my personal view is a synthesis of the two. God is immanent and transcendent.
pelastration
#77
Dec22-03, 04:11 PM
pelastration's Avatar
P: 515
Originally posted by onycho
I think it is best to stay away from beliefs no matter what form or variation they may take. It is very easy to make good people uneasy or take offense when our beliefs are challenged. The following is one of the best definitions of religion that I have found around the net.

Definition of religion:

http://www.tearsofllorona.com/jungdefs.html

Religion: a subjective relationship to certain metaphysical, extramundane factors. A kind of experience accorded the highest value, regardless of its contents. The essence is the person's relationship to God or salvation. Jung called them psychotherapeutic systems and believed they contained, offered a gradiant for, and transformed instinctual (hence asceticism), nonpersonal energies, giving people a cultural counterpole to blind instinct, help through difficult transitional stages, and a sense of meaning. They also help separate the growing person from his parents. For Jung, the unconscious had a religious function, and religion rests on an instinctive basis. Different from creeds, which are codified and dogmatized versions of a religious experience. Creeds usually say they have THE truth and are a collective belief. For Jung, no contradiction existed between faith and knowledge because science has nothing to say about metaphysical events, and beliefs are psychological facts that need no proof.


The following site gives 'one' example of Buddhism as a religion but that is only the author's ideation.

http://www.zianet.com/kahlua/kahluaw...e/BUDDHISM.htm

BUDDHISM. 563 BC: the birth of Buddhism. The religion of about one eighth of the world's people, Buddhism is the name for a complex system of beliefs developed around the teachings of a single man. The Buddha, whose name was Siddhartha Gautama, lived 2,500 years ago in India.



Actually what you are talking about is two simple factors to any form of fact/dogma/doctrine or teaching.

Many people take religions or beliefs as either

1) Literal
vs.
2) Metaphorical

In fact, the religion of Judaism, except for some groups, see this religion as really nothing more than lessons with which to lead a life of morality and ethics. Judaism does not teach reaching a pie-in-the-sky or paradise after life but a religion of deed where one is given the free choice to lead a life or morality, ethics and charity while we are aware of this earthly existence.

Reaching some level of conscious awareness or meditation to improve one's personal health or wealth is meaningless in this religion.

I should know.....
[/QUOTE]
Does Kabbala is part of Judaism? I don't know. But I know Kabbala, it's a psychotherapeutic system (i.e. following introspective paths, passing Daath, etc.). Also the valueing of letters is also a kind of believe. Maybe this is part of some of the groups you referred to.
onycho
#78
Dec22-03, 04:47 PM
P: n/a
[QUOTE]Originally posted by pelastration

[B}
Does Kabbala is part of Judaism? I don't know. But I know Kabbala, it's a psychotherapeutic system (i.e. following introspective paths, passing Daath, etc.). Also the valueing of letters is also a kind of believe. Maybe this is part of some of the groups you referred to. [/B]
Kabalah is a late mysticism that is not a part of the religion of Judaism.

"Kabbalah - Also spelled Cabala. It refers to the mystical interpretation of the Jewish Scriptures. It has two principal written sources. Sefer Yezira is a third century work which purports to present a series of monologues given by the patriarch Abraham. The second, Zohar is a mystical commentary on the Torah written by Moses de León in the 13th century. As a religious movement, it appears to have started in 11th century France, and then spread to Spain and elsewhere. It influenced the development of Hasidism in the 18th century."

Classical Judaism is not concerned with the mystical or metaphysical aspects of existence. Kabbalah arose by a group of men (above) who saw the underlying mystical universe in orbs or lights each with a meaning. There is no more validity in this construct than there is to any of our musing about consciousness and externalizing multiple dimensions with a String Theory of Things.

Judaism's basic tenets or beliefs are that the truth of 'things' is known only by an unseen omnipotent Hand that created 'everything' in timelessness. That mankind has a reason for 'being' and that meaning is the ability to assist in some way the continuing creation process that occurs from nano-second to nano-second. Science believes that matter and energy constantly evolve and change which makes up our assumed universe.

No one has died and come back to tell us if and what reality is and no near-death experience has occurred. With such knowledge, there would be no questions remaining, ergo no freewill choice necessary.

Kabballah is to Judaism as Mormonism is to Christianity.
onycho
#79
Dec22-03, 05:10 PM
P: n/a
Originally posted by Canute
[B]yeah, let's start again. But please note, I'm not talking about my beliefs. I'm talking about what Buddhism is. (You can assault my beliefs as much as you like. I like to test them to the limit.).
Great... Testing Buddhism to the limit is fantastic but like abstractions and consciousness, in my limited opinion, there is no known ways to perform double-blind studies or experiments to verify what we feel is 'the truth.'

Sorry but they are not religious tenets. Buddhism has no religious tenets. It has teachings designed to help people understand. I suppose some people might treat them as tenets, perhaps many novice Budddhist do, especially those who think it's a lifestyle thing. But in fact they are derivations from an underlying understanding of the basis of reality, (which may or may not be correct, that's for you to decide).
Again, I do not wish to question your understanding that Buddhism is in some way an underlying understanding of the basis of reality. The only problem I can see is in the substantiation and not in the fact that Buddhism has persisted for so many centuries. Like the codes, the ultimate truth of all will eventually in time be known without any doubt.

Was that the stuff about codes? Interesting idea, but I must say I thought it was flawed mathematics.
Yes that 'stuff; was about the codes which remains under intensive debate by those who may have stumbled on something that exists or as the opponents’ state, has no encryption or meaning whatsoever.

Time seems to pass before any new constructs of the physical universe is accepted and the truth of one side or the other will eventually be known. The mathematics and the statistical program have been verified by many but there are many others who use their own math in an attempt to debunk the probabilities that the codes exist.

Time will tell....
Canute
#80
Dec23-03, 12:34 PM
P: 1,499
Originally posted by onycho
I think it is best to stay away from beliefs no matter what form or variation they may take. It is very easy to make good people uneasy or take offense when our beliefs are challenged.
If people take offense when their beliefs are challenged that's their problem. Beliefs should challenged regularly imo, like changing the oil on your car.

The following is one of the best definitions of religion that I have found around the net.

Definition of religion:

http://www.tearsofllorona.com/jungdefs.html

Religion: a subjective relationship to certain metaphysical, extramundane factors. A kind of experience accorded the highest value, regardless of its contents. The essence is the person's relationship to God or salvation. Jung called them psychotherapeutic systems and believed they contained, offered a gradiant for, and transformed instinctual (hence asceticism), nonpersonal energies, giving people a cultural counterpole to blind instinct, help through difficult transitional stages, and a sense of meaning. They also help separate the growing person from his parents. For Jung, the unconscious had a religious function, and religion rests on an instinctive basis. Different from creeds, which are codified and dogmatized versions of a religious experience. Creeds usually say they have THE truth and are a collective belief. For Jung, no contradiction existed between faith and knowledge because science has nothing to say about metaphysical events, and beliefs are psychological facts that need no proof.
This definition is why Buddhism is not a religion.


The following site gives 'one' example of Buddhism as a religion but that is only the author's ideation.
For goodness sake, how can one have a religion with no God in it? I'm getting bored saying this over and over again to you. There's no harm in calling it a religion most of the time, (as most people do) since it is in some ways very like a religion. However when when you start knocking religion you have to leave Buddhism out and knock it separately. It is not a religion by any normal definition, if it strictly applied.

BUDDHISM. 563 BC: the birth of Buddhism. The religion of about one eighth of the world's people, Buddhism is the name for a complex system of beliefs developed around the teachings of a single man. The Buddha, whose name was Siddhartha Gautama, lived 2,500 years ago in India.
This is a very misleading definition, but not actually incorrect I suppose.

Many people take religions or beliefs as either

1) Literal
vs.
2) Metaphorical
How can a religion be literal, or a belief be metaphorical? What do you mean.

In fact, the religion of Judaism, except for some groups, see this religion as really nothing more than lessons with which to lead a life of morality and ethics. Judaism does not teach reaching a pie-in-the-sky or paradise after life but a religion of deed where one is given the free choice to lead a life or morality, ethics and charity while we are aware of this earthly existence.

Reaching some level of conscious awareness or meditation to improve one's personal health or wealth is meaningless in this religion.

I should know..... [/B]
I'll take your word for it, although I thought Judaism had a mystical tradition.
Canute
#81
Dec23-03, 12:41 PM
P: 1,499
Originally posted by phoenixthoth
the classical religions take the approach of salvation in the sense that God is "up there" somewhere in a distant heaven. the transcendence of God.

buddhism take the approach of enlightenment. while a higher power isn't specifically mentioned, it is my view that this treats God as an immanent entity;
Then, sorry, but your view will be wrong, formed before you have done your research. There is no fundamental God in Buddhism, immanent or otherwise.

my personal view is a synthesis of the two. God is immanent and transcendent. [/B]
Hmm. Isn't there a contradiction in believing both at the same time?
radagast
#82
Dec23-03, 12:51 PM
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P: 460
Canute,
While I don't care if Buddhism is consider/defined a religion or not, by your own statement [the definition of a word is dictated by it's use], Buddhism is a religion. Most people consider it a religion, as they do Taoism, and use it that way in speech.

Neither Taoism or Buddhism qualify as religions by certain definitions, but that's at least as much a function of how people associate religions with dieties, because that is the religions they are used to.

To consider Buddhism/Taoism not a religion, then you have other things that are discordant in the definition of things - the fact that Buddhism/Taoism have priests, temples, nuns, monks, and many of the trappings that are usually strictly associated with religion.

Some definitions of religion encompass Buddhism as a religion, some don't, but in the same dictionaries, Buddhism is virtually always defined as a religion. How can you reconcile that one definition says no, but a more specific one says yes? Could it be that the generalization of the former definition was imperfect or incomplete?
Canute
#83
Dec23-03, 01:09 PM
P: 1,499
Originally posted by radagast
Canute,
While I don't care if Buddhism is consider/defined a religion or not, by your own statement [the definition of a word is dictated by it's use], Buddhism is a religion. Most people consider it a religion, as they do Taoism, and use it that way in speech.

Neither Taoism or Buddhism qualify as religions by certain definitions, but that's at least as much a function of how people associate religions with dieties, because that is the religions they are used to.

To consider Buddhism/Taoism not a religion, then you have other things that are discordant in the definition of things - the fact that Buddhism/Taoism have priests, temples, nuns, monks, and many of the trappings that are usually strictly associated with religion.

Some definitions of religion encompass Buddhism as a religion, some don't, but in the same dictionaries, Buddhism is virtually always defined as a religion. How can you reconcile that one definition says no, but a more specific one says yes? Could it be that the generalization of the former definition was imperfect or incomplete?
I agree with everything you say here. This is a balanced view, based on the fact that Buddhism has many of the trappings of a religion. However I have never seen a definition of 'religion' that includes Buddhism if that defintion is applied strictly.

Calling it a religion doesn't matter too much for most of the time. But occasionally atheists criticise Buddhism on the grounds that it is a religion, so they've heard, and therefore it must be theistic. Then all the definitions need to be clarified a bit.
phoenixthoth
#84
Dec23-03, 02:07 PM
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P: 1,572
Originally posted by Canute
Then, sorry, but your view will be wrong, formed before you have done your research. There is no fundamental God in Buddhism, immanent or otherwise.
right. i know there is no God in buddhism. that's why i said it was my view, though it's not just mine.

[/quote]
Originally posted by Canute Hmm. Isn't there a contradiction in believing both at the same time? [/QUOTE]

no, there isn't though one could call it a duality not unlike the dual nature of certain things in quantum mechanics. the unity is that God is everywhere, including here and including "up there."
onycho
#85
Dec23-03, 03:26 PM
P: n/a
Questions about Buddhism.... (I am not being factious or trying to be disrespectful)

If Buddhism is not atheistic as described below then from where does the Buddha say that the creation of universe and everything originate?

Is Buddhism basically concerned with escapism from all 'worldly ills' in order to eventually get to Nirvana or the world to come as stated below?

What does Buddhism say about the need for 'being here' or is there some greater purpose to living on earth. Does Buddhism give any reason of why we just couldn't have stayed in Nirvana while being pure intellect in the highest place as espoused by Buddha?

Does Buddha say anything about relationship to helping our fellow beings or just about self realization in a higher state where we can get away from the pain, hunger, lust and all the other experiences of life on this planet.

http://www.buddhistinformation.com/b...ude_to_god.htm

However Buddhism is not atheistic in the sense that modern secularism, rationalism, humanism, etc. could be regarded to be atheistic (although it has much in common with them). Buddhism is not concerned primarily with refuting the notion of God (as some atheistic writers have done). It is principally concerned with developing a method of escape from the worldly ills.....He was more interested in expounding a way to personal salvation, and to improve the weal of mankind both in this world and in the worlds to come. It is this task that informs most of the discourses of the Buddha which later came to be compiled into the various Canons of Buddhism.
radagast
#86
Dec24-03, 09:35 AM
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P: 460
Originally posted by onycho
Questions about Buddhism.... (I am not being factious or trying to be disrespectful)

If Buddhism is not atheistic as described below then from where does the Buddha say that the creation of universe and everything originate?
Buddhism is atheistic the way Chemistry is atheistic. Non-theistic is a better description. As far as I know, Buddha didn't make statements about the creation of the universe. That's not what Buddhism is about. It's about commoning to know, at the absolute most basic level, who you are.

Is Buddhism basically concerned with escapism from all 'worldly ills' in order to eventually get to Nirvana or the world to come as stated below?
My teacher has said, on more than one occasion, that if you are doing this (our Buddhist practice) to escape [the world, your troubles, etc.] then your better off doing drugs. Buddhism isn't an escape. Nothing that engenders the pain that Buddhist retreats do, could ever be confused with escape, anymore than considering Marine boot camp 'escaping from reality'. The only thing Buddism could be said to teach you to escape is suffering.

Enlightenment and Nirvana, have been misinterpreted by Westerners, early on, as some form of heaven or mindless escape. Humans are constantly conflicted by disparate goals of different parts of the mind. You know you shouldn't smoke, but want another cigarette; you know a juicy cheeseburger will raise your cholesterol, but your mouth waters; you want to be faithful to your spouse, but are attracted to your neighbor's spouse...

Enlightenment, or self-realization, among other things is having the disparate parts of your mind come to an understanding. There is a Buddhist book out by the title 'Nothing Special'. It refers to enlightenment. And old Zen saying is: "Before enlightment, you chop wood and fetch water, after enlightenment, you chop wood and fetch water". Westerners, and most anyone that's not familiar with it, have a very skewed view of it.

It is a very profound experience, don't get me wrong, just not in the way you think. I've had a kensho experience (sort of a glimpse of enlightenment), while everything is quite ordinary at the same time it's like finding out you've been extremely tense all your life and all of a sudden you're completely, utterly relaxed.


What does Buddhism say about the need for 'being here' or is there some greater purpose to living on earth. Does Buddhism give any reason of why we just couldn't have stayed in Nirvana while being pure intellect in the highest place as espoused by Buddha?
See explanation above. Nirvana isn't another place.

Does Buddha say anything about relationship to helping our fellow beings or just about self realization in a higher state where we can get away from the pain, hunger, lust and all the other experiences of life on this planet.
You aren't escaping pain, hunger, etc. What you come to realize is that pain doesn't equal suffering. Pain is inescapable in life, suffering is optional. Attachment to desire is what generates suffering, attachment to desire for freedom from pain, attachment to the desire to have new Red Rider BB gun on Christmas morning and only getting a bicycle. Sitting in a doctors office a long time, a minor headache could cause a lot of suffering, yet the same person may barely notice the pain of getting burned while trying to save their child from a burning building.

You learn you do not have to suffer. You learn that you are not part of the whole, but are the whole. You don't harm others anymore than you harm yourself. You have compassion for others, just as you care for your own body parts. This isn't learned from something someone tells you, but from what you discover during your practice of meditation.

Part of the Mahayana vow is to save (lead to enlightenment) all sentient beings.

Unlike other religions, there is no concept of sin or hard, fast rules. The behaviour falls out of the practice. There are rules set up to follow until you get to the place where practice shows you how to behave. Usually these are called precepts and are considered a type of vow - an intention to adhere to them.
onycho
#87
Dec24-03, 11:57 AM
P: n/a
Originally posted by radagast
Buddhism is atheistic the way Chemistry is atheistic. Non-theistic is a better description. As far as I know, Buddha didn't make statements about the creation of the universe. That's not what Buddhism is about. It's about commoning to know, at the absolute most basic level, who you are.

Questions:

1) If the Budda didn't make statements or concerns about creation, then how can one (the indvidual) know who they are without having knowledge of being created?

2) If Buddhism is non-theistic by definition, why did the Buddhist Mahayanists as apposed to Theravada Buddists believe in Buddha as a trinity of gods?

http://www.wsu.edu/~dee/BUDDHISM/MAHAYANA.HTM

The Mahayanists developed a theology of Buddha called the doctrine of "The Three Bodies," or Trikaya. The Buddha was not a human being, as he was in Theravada Buddhism, but the manifestation of a universal, spiritual being. This being had three bodies. When it occupied the earth in the form of Siddhartha Gautama, it took on the Body of Magical Transformation (nirmanakaya ). This Body of Magical Transformation was an emanation of the Body of Bliss (sambhogakaya ), which occupies the heavens in the form of a ruling and governing god of the universe.
My teacher has said, on more than one occasion, that if you are doing this (our Buddhist practice) to escape [the world, your troubles, etc.] then your better off doing drugs. Buddhism isn't an escape. Nothing that engenders the pain that Buddhist retreats do, could ever be confused with escape, anymore than considering Marine boot camp 'escaping from reality'. The only thing Buddism could be said to teach you to escape is suffering.

Questions:

1) Is suffering innate in the Buddhist belief of reality that must necessarily be a part of each earthly existence?

2) Is Buddhist 'escaping from suffering' comparable to those who escape their own world of suffering by joining the French Foreign Legion?

Enlightenment and Nirvana, have been misinterpreted by Westerners, early on, as some form of heaven or mindless escape. Humans are constantly conflicted by disparate goals of different parts of the mind. You know you shouldn't smoke, but want another cigarette; you know a juicy cheeseburger will raise your cholesterol, but your mouth waters; you want to be faithful to your spouse, but are attracted to your neighbor's spouse...

Do the Tantric Buddhists believe in using drugs, eating dung, etc to escape suffering as apposed to Theravada Buddhism?

The Tantric Buddhists, on the other hand, developed a different methodology from this insight that the world is unreal. Just because the physical world doesn't exist doesn't mean that one should reject it. On the one hand, if the physical world doesn't exist, that means that one cannot commit right or wrong. As a way of proving that one is enlightened, all sorts of forbidden acts should be engaged in: fornication, thieving, eating dung, and so forth.
Enlightenment, or self-realization, among other things is having the disparate parts of your mind come to an understanding. There is a Buddhist book out by the title 'Nothing Special'. It refers to enlightenment. And old Zen saying is: "Before enlightment, you chop wood and fetch water, after enlightenment, you chop wood and fetch water". Westerners, and most anyone that's not familiar with it, have a very skewed view of it.

Is 'Enlightenment' or self-realization attained by intuition or by intellectualization?

How does Zen Buddhism compare with Tantric or Theravada Buddhism in obtaining an escape from 'suffering?'

As a Westerner, the concepts of Buddhism are very difficult to understand or intellectualize as stated in the following.

To comprehend one must first have discipline and restrain the mind through meditation and introspection, without the use of logical thinking, avoiding the pitfalls of verbalization. The ultimate aim is to obtain an entirely new view of all experience. And the key word is Satori (enlightenment). This is the experience the Buddha sought in lonely and quiet meditation, and this is the mystic "enlightenment" that every person can find.
It is a very profound experience, don't get me wrong, just not in the way you think. I've had a kensho experience (sort of a glimpse of enlightenment), while everything is quite ordinary at the same time it's like finding out you've been extremely tense all your life and all of a sudden you're completely, utterly relaxed.

Is the ultimate enlightnment of Buddhism the equivalent of being under general anesthesia of surgery where a level of consciousness is acheieved with a total loss of 'suffering' and while reaching a true level of understanding or Kensho?

Having had a Kensho experience doesn’t mean you are Enlightened any more than sinking a one-time jump shot means you are ready for the NBA. The difference is years of practice, practice, practice. The scholar Robert Thurman says that the classical Indian texts give a description of complete Enlightenment as being something akin to what we might describe in modern terms as "cleaning out our unconscious." The process is long and difficult; the Indian texts describe it as taking many lifetimes to accomplish.
You aren't escaping pain, hunger, etc. What you come to realize is that pain doesn't equal suffering. Pain is inescapable in life, suffering is optional. Attachment to desire is what generates suffering, attachment to desire for freedom from pain, attachment to the desire to have new Red Rider BB gun on Christmas morning and only getting a bicycle. Sitting in a doctors office a long time, a minor headache could cause a lot of suffering, yet the same person may barely notice the pain of getting burned while trying to save their child from a burning building.

Do you not experience pain or suffering immediately after being shot or as I am told when one is blown to smithereens by a bomb blast? A level of true enlightenment is achieved so to speak without meditation.

You learn you do not have to suffer. You learn that you are not part of the whole, but are the whole. You don't harm others anymore than you harm yourself. You have compassion for others, just as you care for your own body parts. This isn't learned from something someone tells you, but from what you discover during your practice of meditation.

A thought just came to me in a moment of meditation. As an example, the millions of innocent men, women and children in the Nazi concentration camps suffered mightly but according to Buddhism could simply have escaped this suffering by simply meditating with an understanding that they were a part of the whole. I guess that they didn't discover this fact in time as their suffering was based on their beliefs in a G-d. I guess they weren't enlightened.

"Part of the Mahayana vow is to save (lead to enlightenment) all sentient beings."

If you are a Mahayana Buddhist, do you vow to save all sentient beings? Is meditation enough to do this or must you actually do something active in this world to act on your vow?

If you are a Mahanyana Buddhist, are you a trinitarian (Trikaya)?

Unlike other religions, there is no concept of sin or hard, fast rules. The behaviour falls out of the practice. There are rules set up to follow until you get to the place where practice shows you how to behave. Usually these are called precepts and are considered a type of vow - an intention to adhere to them.

You say there are no hard or fast rules but there are precepts or vow to attempt to adhere to. Since there is no G-d, why should you obtain enlightenment since it ultimately serves no purpose? These precepts (commandments) seem to maintain the appearance of a true religion even if denied.

The Four Noble Truths (4)
1. There is suffering
2. Caused by craving
3. Relief is possible
4. via 8-fold path:6
a. Right view
b. Right resolve
c. Right speech
d. Right conduct
e. Right livelihood
f. Right effort
g. Right awareness
h. Right meditation
phoenixthoth
#88
Dec24-03, 02:13 PM
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P: 1,572
i would say, not knowing anything, that the reasons to follow the eightfold path are worlds different from the reasons to follow the ten commandments.

radagast:
Nothing that engenders the pain that Buddhist retreats do, could ever be confused with escape, anymore than considering Marine boot camp 'escaping from reality'.
is that the ego death or sublation of the ego that's painful?
Rader
#89
Dec25-03, 03:38 PM
P: 739
Human consciousness seems to be aware and know, by its expression through all religions and philosophies', that there is one commandment, that incluids all commandments. It is expressed in different ways. The expressions are as different as the races and cultures. The expression, awareness and knowing, is also different on the individual level of consciousness. Thou shalt love they neigbor as thyself. The problem is putting it into practice. In my humble opinion, once put in practice, enlightnment should come there after.

Gloria in Excelsis Deo
phoenixthoth
#90
Dec25-03, 10:53 PM
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P: 1,572
hence my current signature:
love the world as yourself for, in truth, It Is.

this also relates to a couple of poems i've written with the words "It Is" in it.


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