FRIHOSTFORUMSSEARCHFAQTOSBLOGSCOMPETITIONS
You are invited to Log in or Register a free Frihost Account!


Buddhism





silliman
Aloha "Thinkers"

I see almost every major religion of the world represented in this forum, except Buddhism (which I think of as being more of a philosophy than a religion). Anyway, for coversations and the fond exchange of ideas, let me introduce the basic tenets of Buddhism for discussion and shared experience.

The Four Noble Truths
The Buddha taught that life was dissatisfactory because of craving, but that this condition was curable by following the Noble Eightfold Path. They are:
1. Dukkha: All worldly life is unsatisfactory, disjointed, containing suffering.
2. Samudaya: There is a cause of suffering, which is attachment or desire (tanha) rooted in ignorance.
3. Nirodha: There is an end of suffering, which is Nirvana.
4. Magga: There is a path that leads out of suffering, known as the Noble Eightfold Path.

Wisdom (pañña)
1. Right Understanding (or Right View, or Right Perspective) - samma ditthi
2. Right Thought (or Right Intention, or Right Resolve) - samma sankappa

Virtue (Ethical Conduct) (sila)
3. Right Speech - samma vaca
4. Right Action - samma kammanta
5. Right Livelihood - samma ajiva

Concentration (Mental Development) (samadhi)
6. Right Effort (or Right Endeavour) - samma vayama
7. Right Mindfulness - samma sati
8. Right Concentration - samma samadhi
nexusads
I have been studying the mahayana tradition for quite some time now and I enjoy meditating on a regular (sometimes semi-regular) basis. Do you have any good ideas on how to cultivate the four noble truths and the eightfold path into your everyday life? I am interested in learning how people integrate knowledge with practice.

Light and love,

Adam
silliman
nexusads wrote:
I enjoy meditating on a regular (sometimes semi-regular) basis. Do you have any good ideas on how to cultivate the four noble truths and the eightfold path into your everyday life? I am interested in learning how people integrate knowledge with practice.

Light and love,

Adam


Aloha Adam,

You have asked a very profound question, how does one take a religion and make it “live” through personal experience.

As you may know, Mahāyāna Buddhist schools, practiced originally in India as Dhyana , which then came to be known in Vietnamese as Thiền and China as Ch'an, and subsequently traveled to Korea called Seon which was later passed on to Japan. In total, there are approximately 708 million adherents – some adhere strictly and some are Buddhist in name only.

Having lived in Thailand, I have had more exposure to the Theravada sect than to the Mahayana traditions. Theravada is the predominant religion of Sri Lanka and continental Southeast Asia (parts of southwest China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Thailand). It is also gaining popularity in Singapore and Australia.

At the risk of over simplifying, may I share my personal experience which seems to have worked well for me, thus far. The key, as you suggested, is to meditate. Meditation will bring an inner mind to your presence that will not only guide you to “live” the Eightfold Path but will also validate the things you read about Buddhism. Some things that we read and thinking about just don’t make sense spiritually or emotionally. Meditation will help brings mind (knowledge) and spirit to one accord.

A more complicated answer lies in the reality that the Eightfold Path are intricately connected and is difficult to separate one (e.g., Right Understanding) from another (e.g., Right Action). For example, from my personal experience, it flows like the following: I meditate (Right Concentration), find deep silence and peace which gives rise to Right Thought (or Right Intention, or Right Resolve), then naturally thoughts evolve to become Right Understanding (or Right View, or Right Perspective). Havin achieved an understanding, we frequently have the impulse to act (Right Action) which can take the manifest form of Right Speech or Right Effort. The action we take may even lead us to find a new job (Right Livelihood). All of these principles can be picked apart through Right Mindfulness, and we can choose to focus on one or more each day. But I find it difficult to separate them because they all work so well as a “whole.” [Sorry for being so long and verbose in my reply]

Short answer: Keep meditating, you're on the right Path.

Peace and love,

Mark
AftershockVibe
I have wondered about buddhism when I was at uni, just out of interest.
What seems odd is the huge lack of information about the religion, the library had racks of books on Islam, Sihks, Christianity (obviously)... etc but prety much nothing on Buddhism.

How would you go about learning about buddhism when there is such a lack of resource. Of course there are no buddhist schools either.
silliman
AftershockVibe wrote:
I have wondered about buddhism when I was at uni, just out of interest.
What seems odd is the huge lack of information about the religion, the library had racks of books on Islam, Sihks, Christianity (obviously)... etc but prety much nothing on Buddhism.

How would you go about learning about buddhism when there is such a lack of resource. Of course there are no buddhist schools either.


Aloha AftershockVibe,

May I suggest the following link as a rich resource to Buddhist literature?
http://www.questia.com/library/religion/asian-religions/buddhism/buddhism.jsp?CRID=buddhism&OFFID=se1&KEY=buddhism_books

By in large, most Buddhist traditions do not aggressively “proselytize” in the manner commonly found in other major world religions. Generally speaking there are no “heavenly rewards after life” for each “convert” you attract to Buddhism, nor is Buddhism “exclusive” in that it will banish “outsiders” who don’t adhere to the religion into outer darkness or hell. Consequently, there is little need to write volumes of literature to convert or persuade non-believers, as what might be found in other religions.
If there is a motivation to expound the philosophy of Buddhism through publications, it is generally for the purpose of explaining the teachings of Buddha and not to convince aspirants to join.

This reference might be helpful to you and to Adam
:

How To Practice: The Way to a Meaningful Life
by The Dalai Lama

This is a helpful book that demonstrates how day-to-day living can be a spiritual practice. The following is a quote from the book:
“There are two ways to create happiness:
• The first is external. By obtaining better clothes, better shelter, and better friends we can find a certain measure of happiness and satisfaction.
• The second is through mental development, which yields inner happiness. However, these two approaches are not equally viable. External happiness cannot last long without its counterpart.... However, if you have peace of mind you can find happiness even under the most difficult circumstances.”[/i][/u]
doomz
the CORE of all Buddha teaching is '0' (zero)

understanding this '0' then you get understaing most of the teaching inside Buddhism

act like 'zero' that you already doing Buddhism. ^^
nam_siddharth
doomz wrote:
the CORE of all Buddha teaching is '0' (zero)

understanding this '0' then you get understaing most of the teaching inside Buddhism

act like 'zero' that you already doing Buddhism. ^^


Quote:
In the Buddhist approach to life the value of work is deeply embedded. The Buddha taught that actions bring results, whether for good or ill. He also taught that nothing just happens by itself - all things are conditioned and each thing as a cause. To work hard and conscientiously has beneficial consequences, whether this is working on spiritual practices or cleaning the streets. Idleness, lethargy, dissolute behavior are decried by the Buddha as unwholesome.


Buddha wrote:
All that we are is the result of what we have thought. If a man speaks or acts with an evil thought, pain follows him. If a man speaks or acts with a pure thought, happiness follows him, like a shadow that never leaves him.


Buddha wrote:
All things appear and disappear because of the concurrence of causes and conditions. Nothing ever exists entirely alone; everything is in relation to everything else.


For more quote's of Buddha visit the site: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/b/buddha.html

Where can you find zero? Please tell me. @doomz
silvergaze
Please post any copied text within the "[ quote ][ /quote]" tags.

Quote:
The ten recollections refer to ten reflective exercises that can be practiced to strengthen one's commitment to the Buddhist path. The sixth of these is a recollection on deities.

The ten recollections refer to ten reflective exercises that can be practiced to strengthen one's commitment ot the Buddhist path. The fifth of these is a recollection on generosity.

The ten recollections refer to ten reflective exercises that can be practiced to strengthen one's commitment ot the Buddhist path. The fourth of these is a recollection on virtue. Virtue plays a very important part in Buddhist life. There are clear moral guidelines laid down for both the lay and monastic communities.

The third of the ten recollections focuses on the Sangha, the community of Buddhist monks and nuns. The purpose of this meditation is to reflect on the qualities of the Sangha and the path its members follow.

The second of the ten recollections is a recollection of the dhamma or dharma, the Buddha's teachings. The special qualities of the Buddha's teachings form the focus for this meditation. These include the purity of dhamma , that it leads to nibbana and that the practice of it bears immediate results.

The ten recollections refer to ten reflective exercises that can be practiced to strengthen one's commitment ot the Buddhist path. The first of these is a recollection on the Buddha himself.
selim06
i have respect to Budha(actually all of religions)but i don't belive it and it's rules...
doomz
Quote:

Where can you find zero? Please tell me. @doomz


when you realize the final purpose of Buddhism, you will find it.

ok may ask you a question ^^, what is Buddha?
nam_siddharth
Buddha is a Pali word, which means inteligent man.
zwoarenajja
lam rim just did it for me, que viva el buddhism!
doomz
Quote:

Buddha is a Pali word, which means inteligent man.


oo so "Buddha" mean Inteligent man in Pali.
i believe it will better to said "Wise Man" in english
hmm... not that, I don't asking: What is "Buddha"'s word come from & meaning ?

I ask "What is Buddha?"
nam_siddharth
doomz wrote:
Quote:

Buddha is a Pali word, which means inteligent man.


oo so "Buddha" mean Inteligent man in Pali.
i believe it will better to said "Wise Man" in english
hmm... not that, I don't asking: What is "Buddha"'s word come from & meaning ?

I ask "What is Buddha?"


Buddha is a historical person born in 560 BC in India. In that period, two extreme types religions were present in India. One, which was preaching extreme luxury. And the other, which was preaching extreme suffering.

And Buddha preached middle path.

Quote:
"Middle Path" may be misunderstood as equivocal. In fact Buddhism is not as such. "Middle" means neutral, upright, and centered. It means to investigate and penetrate the core of life and all things with an upright, unbiased attitude. In order to solve a problem, we should position ourselves on neutral, upright and unbiased ground. We investigate the problem from various angles, analyze the findings, understand the truth thoroughly, and find a reasonable conclusion.

The Middle Path in Buddhism does not mean having a biased view or superficial understanding only. The "Middle Path" represents a distinct theory and way of Buddhist practice that is not common to other religions. Buddhism is a religion with high moral values. It lays great emphasis on human thought and action in dealing with the natural environment, society or individual problems. It is concerned with the relationship between thoughts and behavior, and the relationship between behavior and its consequences.
Juparis
I've been very curious about Buddhism, but like AftershockVibe, have never had the resources. Sure, there's net articles and such, but you can't be too sure on how trustworthy they are, or if the information isn't a bit skewed or biased..

You meantioned, silliman, that Buddhism is more of a philosophy to you. With that in mind, would you think it possible to be a Christian and a Buddhist?
I don't know enough about Buddhism to answer that myself; I have no clue how stupidly easy or intelectual that question is. Still, I'm curious, because I'd love to learn more about Buddhism, but I know of some conservative Christians that would be most upset that I would even look into it.

Whatever--at least someone finally started a thread on it. Razz
sangharsha
Buddhism (Pāli Buddhadhamma or Sanskrit Buddhadharma) is a religion and philosophy based on the teachings of the Buddha, Siddhārtha Gautama, who lived in the 5th century BCE. Buddhism spread throughout the ancient Indian sub-continent in the five centuries following his death, and propagated into Central, Southeast, and East Asia over the next two millennia. Today, Buddhism is divided primarily into three traditions, Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. Buddhism continues to attract followers worldwide, and, with around 376 million followers, it is considered a major world religion. It has attracted many intellectual followers and supporters such as H.G.Wells and Albert Einstein who stated that 'Buddhism is the only religion able to cope with modern scientific needs'. Buddhism has been accepted by many as the religion that does not conflict with science.



Buddhism is a major spiritual movement, with an estimated 376 million followers worldwide. Accurate demographic data are difficult to acquire, however, because many Buddhists live in nations with oppressive governments, and because of the growing number of Buddhists in the West.

There is controversy among scholars of religion concerning whether Buddhism constitutes a religion or a Philosophical movement; these discussions closely follow the problem of "what is religion?" (see religious studies). Especially in the West, many people who are devoutly Buddhist also consider themselves to be Christian, Muslim, or Jewish, or as belonging to some other ideological tradition.

In general, the aim of Buddhist practice is to end all kinds of suffering in life. To achieve this state, adherents seek to purify and train the mind by following the Noble Eightfold Path, and eventually to gain true knowledge of reality and thus attain liberation (Nirvana).

Buddhist morality is underpinned by the principles of harmlessness (ahimsa) and moderation. Mental training focuses on moral discipline (sila), meditative concentration (samadhi), and wisdom (prajñā).

The Buddha is considered to be a person who discovered the true nature of reality through years of study, investigation of the various religious practices of his time, and meditation. This discovery is called enlightenment. According to the Buddha, any person can follow his example and become enlightened through the study of his words, and by leading a virtuous, moral life.

While Buddhism does not deny the existence of supernatural beings (e.g., the devas, of which many are discussed in Buddhist scripture), it does not ascribe power for creation, salvation or judgment to them. Like humans, they are regarded as having the power to affect worldly events and so some Buddhist schools associate with them via ritual. All supernatural beings, as living entities, are a part of the six-part reincarnation cycle.

Buddhism is categorized under the Shraman Tradition (Shramaṇa Paramparā) of Indian philosophy, rather than the Vedic Tradition (Vaidika Paramparā) that is followed by Orthodox Hinduism. Buddhism is called an Ārya Dharma (Aryan religion), meaning, a noble religious way of life.

Siddhartha Gautam
According to the tradition, Siddhārtha Gautama (Sanskrit सिद्धार्थ गौतम, pronounced "sιd-dhα:rthə gautəmə"; in Pāli, Siddhattha Gautama) was born in Lumbini. Lumbini is usually placed in what is now southern Nepal. Siddhārtha's father was Suddhodana, a leader of the Shakya people.

Traditions state that the Buddha's mother passed away at his birth or a few days later. The legend says that a seer predicted shortly after his birth that Siddhārtha would become either a great king or a great holy man; because of this, the king tried to make sure that Siddhartha never had any cause for dissatisfaction with his life, as that might drive him toward a spiritual path. Nevertheless, at the age of 29, he came across what has become known as the Four Passing Sights: an old crippled man, a sick man, a decaying corpse, and finally a wandering holy man. These four sights led him to the realization that birth, old age, sickness and death come to everyone. He decided to abandon his worldly life, leaving behind his privilege, rank, caste, and his wife and child, to take up the life of a wandering holy man in search of the answer to the problem of birth, old age, sickness, and death.

Siddhārtha pursued the path of the yogi and meditated with two Brahmin hermits, and, although he quickly achieved high levels of meditative consciousness (dhyana), he was still not satisfied with the results. Gautama then began his training in the ascetic life and practicing vigorous techniques of physical and mental austerity. Gautama proved quite adept at these practices, and was able to surpass his teachers. However, he found no answer to his questions. Leaving behind established teachers, he and a small group of close companions set out to take their austerities even further. After six years of ascetism, and nearly starving himself to death to no profit, Siddhārtha began to reconsider his path. He then remembered a moment in childhood in which he had been watching his father start the season's plowing, and he had fallen into a naturally concentrated and focused state in which time seemed to stand still, and which was blissful and refreshing.

After discarding asceticism and concentrating on meditation, Gautama discovered what Buddhists call the Middle Way—a path of moderation away from the extremes of self-indulgence and self-mortification. To strengthen his body, he accepted a little buttermilk from a passing goatherd. Then, sitting under a pipal tree, now known as the Bodhi tree, he vowed never to arise until he had found the Truth. At the age of 35, he attained Enlightenment and became a Buddha.
The Buddha venerated by Indra and Brahma, Kanishka casket, dated to 127 CE, British Museum.
Enlarge
The Buddha venerated by Indra and Brahma, Kanishka casket, dated to 127 CE, British Museum.

For the remaining 45 years of his life, Gautama Buddha traveled in the Gangetic Plain of northeastern India, teaching his doctrine and discipline to all—from nobles to outcaste street sweepers, including adherents of many different schools and teachers. The Buddha founded the sanghas, the community of monks and that of nuns, which continued to declaim his teaching after his death.

Doctrines
Numerous distinct groups have developed since the passing of Gautama Buddha, with diverse teachings that vary widely in practice, philosophical emphasis, and culture. However, there are certain doctrines which are common to all schools of Buddhism.


Dependent Origination

Main article: Pratitya-samutpada

The enlightenment (Bodhi) of the Buddha Gautama was simultaneously his liberation from suffering and his insight into the nature of reality. What the Buddha awakened to was the truth of dependent origination (Sanskrit: pratītya-samutpāda, Pali: paticca samuppada). Any phenomenon ‘exists’ only because of the ‘existence’ of other phenomena in a complex web of cause and effect. For sentient beings, this amounts to a never-ending cycle of rebirth (samsara) according to the law of karma and vipaka. Because all things are thus conditioned and transient (anicca), they have no real, independent identity (anatta) and so do not truly ‘exist’, although to ordinary minds they do appear to exist. All phenomena are thus fundamentally insubstantial and empty (sunya). Wise human beings, who see things as they are (yatha-bhuta-ñana-dassana), renounce attachment and clinging which cause suffering (dukkha), transform the energy of desire into awareness and understanding, and eventually attain nirvana.


The Four Noble Truths

Main article: The Four Noble Truths

The Buddha taught that life was dissatisfactory because of craving, but that this condition was curable by following the Noble Eightfold Path (Pali: Ariya Atthangika Magga, Sanskrit: Arya Ashtanga Marg). This teaching is called the Four Noble Truths (Sanskrit: catvāri-ārya-satyāni; Pali: cattari ariya saccani).

1. Dukkha: All worldly life is unsatisfactory, disjointed, containing suffering.
2. Samudaya: There is a cause of suffering, which is attachment or desire (tanha) rooted in ignorance (avidya).
3. Nirodha: There is an end of suffering, which is Nirvana.
4. Magga: There is a path that leads out of suffering, known as the Noble Eightfold Path.

The Four Noble Truths was the topic of the first sermon given by the Buddha after his enlightenment, which was given to the ascetics with whom he had practiced austerities.


The Noble Eightfold Path

Main article: Noble Eightfold Path

The Noble Eightfold Path is the way to the cessation of suffering, the fourth part of the Four Noble Truths. In order to fully understand the noble truths and investigate whether they were in fact true, Buddha recommended that a certain path be followed which consists of:

1. Right Understanding - (samyag-dRSTi, sammaa-diTTi)
2. Right Thought - 〈samyak-saMkalpa, sammaa-saGkalpa〉
3. Right Speech - (samyag-vaac, sammaa-vaacaa)
4. Right Conduct - (samyak-kalmaanta, sammaa-kammanta)
5. Right Livelihood - (samyag-aajiiva, sammaa-aajiiva)
6. Right Effort - (samyag-vyaayaama, sammaa-vaayaama)
7. Right Mindfulness - (samyak-smrTi, sammaa-sati)
8. Right Concentration - (samyak-samaadhi, sammaa-samaadhi)

The word 'samyak' actually means whole or complete or holistic view of things and not just "Right" (as opposed to wrong) as is commonly translated [1].

There are numbers of way to interpret the Eightfold Path. On one hand, the Noble Eightfold Path is spoken of as being a progressive series of stages through which the practitioner moves, the culmination of one leading to the beginning of another while others see it as the states of the 'Path' as requiring simultaneous development. It is also common to categorise into Prajna/Panna (Wisdom), Sila (Virtuous Behaviour) and Samadhi (Concentration), some systemising it further as shown below:
Right Livelihood Right Speech
Right Understanding Right Conduct
Right Thought
Right Concentration Right Effort
Right Mindfulness
AdamantMonk
AftershockVibe wrote:
How would you go about learning about buddhism when there is such a lack of resource. Of course there are no buddhist schools either.


I spent a summer at my local Thai Buddhist temple (Wat Buddhamongkolnimit) a couple of years ago, Primarily to learn about the Dhamma (Dharma) but ended up learning some of the Thai language, Meditation techniques, and other stuff. So basically if you have the time (the monk lifestyle is waay slow) go to the source.

Also that summer opened me up to the awesome world of Thai food.
AdamantMonk
Juparis, The Dalai Lama said something like "It is impossible to be both a Christian and a Buddhist, Because Being both means you are being true to neither."

Buddhists are nontheistic, which is why I think many think of it as more of a Philosophy or teaching than a Religion. Buddhists also believe in Reincarnation as opposed to Heaven (This gets a little fuzzy as you must be Enlightened in order to escape the cycle of Reincarnation, 'least in Theravada Buddhism). However both Religions hold the same idea of peace and goodwill toward man and all that jazz.
Juparis
AdamantMonk wrote:
Juparis, The Dalai Lama said something like "It is impossible to be both a Christian and a Buddhist, Because Being both means you are being true to neither."

Buddhists are nontheistic, which is why I think many think of it as more of a Philosophy or teaching than a Religion. Buddhists also believe in Reincarnation as opposed to Heaven (This gets a little fuzzy as you must be Enlightened in order to escape the cycle of Reincarnation, 'least in Theravada Buddhism). However both Religions hold the same idea of peace and goodwill toward man and all that jazz.


Ah, thanks for the clarification. I think simply because I imitated some of the practices (only what's well-known), I had some vain hope that I could belong to the culture. I'll just have to find peace of mind and discipline myself some other way.

No Buddhists here, but definitely a strage Christian. Very Happy
Yantaal
Is there a god in Buddism, because i find that to be the most dissapointing idea in most religions. Buddism everything about it seems ok, but i am picky, i belive in the big band, evolution, and no gods, i dont belive in life after death etc etc, which is the main reason i am not religion.

BUt i dont know, buddism just seems good to me maybe because of the buddist monks who are awesome with martial arts.
AdamantMonk
Don't get me wrong, There's nothing wrong with being a Christian and practicing Buddhist rituals. Meditation is a great way to clear your mind, relax you, assist in digestion (really), make you a more pleasant person to be around, help with mood swings, and many other things.

Just keep in mind Meditation isnt just sitting down and closing your eyes. It's a way to acheieve Mindfulness and Enlightenment. It requires concentration and focus.
After an hour of straight meditation, you can begin to slouch (not good) but you can't slouch as it affects your focus, but you can't focus on your slouching, as you'll be distracted. It's a hard practice to approach properly, but once you get it down, it can change your life (seriously)
AdamantMonk
Yantaal wrote:
BUt i dont know, buddism just seems good to me maybe because of the buddist monks who are awesome with martial arts.


To answer your question, Yantaal, No. Buddhism does not incorporate any God or Godlike figure (nontheistic) and from what I've learned, Monks being good martial artists is not as much of a stereotype as it seems.

At least in Thailand, most Muay Thai champions become Monks afterwards. They never practice it though. I knew a few Monks that were Muay Thai champions at the temple, but they never agreed to teach me.
sangharsha
Meditation
Practice of meditation or dhyāna is essential to the cultivation of mindfulness and mental concentration, which is needed to achieve insight. Almost all Buddhist schools agree that the Buddha taught two types of meditation, viz. samatha and vipassana meditation. Samatha (tranquility or concentration) meditation starts from being mindful to an object or idea, which is expanded to one's body, mind and entire surroundings, leading to state of total concentration and tranquility. This state of mind is considered a prerequisite to the attainment of vipassana (insight). This dichotomy is also sometimes discussed as "stopping and seeing." In Buddhist practice, it is said that while samatha meditation can calm the mind, only vipassana meditation can reveal how the mind was disturbed to start with, which is what leads to prajña (pure understanding) and jñana (knowledge) and thus can lead to nirvana.

There are many variations in the style of meditation, from sitting cross-legged or kneeling to chanting or walking. The most common method of meditation is to concentrate on one's breath, because this practice can lead to both samatha and vipassana.
sangharsha
During his life time, Buddha specifically refused to answer a number of questions. These are (1) Whether the world is eternal (2) Whether the world is infinite (3) Whether the body and the soul is one and (4) Whether the Buddha exists after death. The Buddha, using an analogy of poisoned arrow, indicated to Malunkyaputta that such speculative questions are ultimately unprofitable.

In another occasion, the Buddha, without giving specific elaboration, stated that minor vinaya rule can be amended by Sangha. It is also believe that Buddah used Magdhi or Ardha-Magadhi dialect, which is very similar to the literary language of the Jains dialect. However, Buddah "admonished his leading Arhats not to compel his followers to learn Ardha-Magadhi in order to understand his doctrine". He further diverge from ancient Brahmin tradition by allowing monks and nuns not just to preach in local language but recite dharma in local language as well.

Soon after the passing of Gautama Buddha, the first Buddhist council was held. As with any ancient Indian tradition, transmission of teaching were done orally. Primary purpose of assembly were to collectively recite the teaching so to ensure that no errors occurs in oral transmission. In the first council, Ananda, Buddah's personal attendant was called upon to recite the discourses of the Buddha (sutra/sutta), and Upali, another disciple, recited the monastic rules (vinaya).
AdamantMonk
Looks like you just Copied and Pasted from a website... Mind providing the source for the info?
nam_siddharth
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhism

Cool
AdamantMonk
I guess Wikipedia really does have everything. And here I was thinking he found some sort of obscure fountain of knowledge online.
nam_siddharth
If you want to know Buddhism, you must read Dhammapada. It is collection of Buddha's teachings.

But Buddhism is not limited to Dhammapada only.
silvergaze
Please post any copied text within the "[ quote ][ /quote]" tags.

Quote:
The Buddha was born Siddhartha Gautama, a prince of the Sakya tribe of Nepal, in approximately 566 BC. When he was twentynine years old, he left the comforts of his home to seek the meaning of the suffering he saw around him. After six years of arduous yogic training, he abandoned the way of self-mortification and instead sat in mindful meditation beneath a bodhi tree.

On the full moon of May, with the rising of the morning star, Siddhartha Gautama became the Buddha, the enlightened one.

The Buddha wandered the plains of northeastern India for 45 years more, teaching the path or Dharma he had realized in that moment. Around him developed a community or Sangha of monks and, later, nuns, drawn from every tribe and caste, devoted to practicing this path. In approximately 486 BC, at the age of 80, the Buddha died. His last words are said to be...

Impermanent are all created things;

Strive on with awareness.

Samsara is this world, filled as it is with so much pain and sorrow. All beings in this world are subject to the law of karma. Karma means volitional act, that is, something you do, say, or think that is in fact in your control. Any such act has moral consequences, called vipaka, which means fruit. In traditional Buddhism, this consequences can occur in this life, or in a future life.

Most Buddhists believe in rebirth. For many, rebirth is no different from what the Hindus believed, i.e. reincarnation or transmigration -- moving from one's old body at death to a new body at birth or conception. A little more precisely, rebirth is nothing more than the transmission of one's karma. Buddha likened it to the flame that passes from one candle to another. So the idea of an immortal soul, a continuing personality, is definitely not part of the rebirth idea.

Rebirth and similar concepts are not a part of most westerners' cultures, so many western Buddhists, as well as some eastern Buddhists, take rebirth as a metaphor, rather than literally. Buddhism has never been a particularly literalist religion, so this is not at all taboo. In fact, Buddha often avoids discussing the reality of one metaphysical idea or another as irrelevant to the practice of the Dharma.

The image to the right is the Tibetan Wheel of Life, which represents Samsara. In the very center, there is a rooster chasing a pig chasing a snake chasing the rooster -- craving, hatred, and ignorance. Around that are people ascending the white semicircle of life, and others descending the black semicircle of death. The greatest portion of the Wheel is devoted to representations of the six realms -- the realm of the gods, the realm of the titans, the realm of humans, the realm of animals, the realm of the hungry ghosts, and the realm of demons -- each realm looked over by its own boddhisattva. The outermost circle is the 12 steps of dependent origination. The entire Wheel is held by Yama, the Lord of Death.
AdamantMonk
Image to the right huh? Maybe you should either quote your sources or simply provide a link, instead of copying and pasting.
doomz
Quote:
Is there a god in Buddism, because i find that to be the most dissapointing idea in most religions. Buddism everything about it seems ok, but i am picky, i belive in the big band, evolution, and no gods, i dont belive in life after death etc etc, which is the main reason i am not religion.


the answer is there is a god in Buddhism. but Buddha is not a god.
god is just a better form compare with human,

but inside god still there is some 'bla..bla..bla' left <--- ("bla3"? my english is bad >.<, I have to go home & check dictionary first that I want to said). I mean some behaviour like angry, happy, depended, etc. for example god still have to stay in paradise. depend on what kind of god he's be. god like to punish other when the other make hime angry.

Quote:

BUt i dont know, buddism just seems good to me maybe because of the buddist monks who are awesome with martial arts


you mean Shaolin ???
in fact there is no relation at all between martial art and Buddhism.

Shaollin just a history. which there was a time, when a wanderer hi-monk (from India) across temple call Shaolin, he see & reallize those monk physical so-weak. then he decide to teach some martial art for their healthy not for attack somebody, keep it in mind!.

no monk from this world learn martial art, excepted in Shaolin temple.
when you watching in TV or Thearter.. it just for story purpose.
monk must not attack other for any reason.
mike1reynolds
AdamantMonk, you have some odd notions of Buddhism: no God, no Heaven? How is Nirvana different from Heaven? You imply that Buddhism is atheistic, but you do back flips to avoid using the term, fabricating a term instead -- "nontheistic", which isn't a word in the English language. Buddhism asserts that the entire universe is a self-aware being, even apparently empty space. When Buddhists talk about the Great Void as a personality that knows your thoughts, who is this but God?
BruceTheDauber
mike1reynolds wrote:
AdamantMonk, you have some odd notions of Buddhism: no God, no Heaven? How is Nirvana different from Heaven? You imply that Buddhism is atheistic, but you do back flips to avoid using the term, fabricating a term instead -- "nontheistic", which isn't a word in the English language. Buddhism asserts that the entire universe is a self-aware being, even apparently empty space. When Buddhists talk about the Great Void as a personality that knows your thoughts, who is this but God?


Buddhism is called nontheistic, rather than atheistic, because Buddhist teachings don't say there are definitely no gods, or that you mustn't worship them, but it doesn't say there necessarily are gods, either. It certainly doesn't say you must worship any gods. It just says the question of gods is not important. Therefore, there are Buddhist sects that worship gods, and there are Buddhist sects that don't, and there are also some Buddhists who, from the way they revered the Buddha, you would say they worshipped him as a deity, but they are all conformant to the basic teachings of Buddhism.

Nirvana is not Heaven. It does not involve the survival of the self, having pleasant experiences in a pleasant place, which is what characterises Heaven. In Buddhist sects that (perhaps influenced by Hinduism or Chinese folk religion) have gods and heavens, Nirvana is nothing to do with any of those.

The two beliefs in Buddhism that require a leap in faith (for a modern, educated person) are karma and reincarnation.
mike1reynolds
BruceTheDauber wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
AdamantMonk, you have some odd notions of Buddhism: no God, no Heaven? How is Nirvana different from Heaven? You imply that Buddhism is atheistic, but you do back flips to avoid using the term, fabricating a term instead -- "nontheistic", which isn't a word in the English language. Buddhism asserts that the entire universe is a self-aware being, even apparently empty space. When Buddhists talk about the Great Void as a personality that knows your thoughts, who is this but God?


Buddhism is called nontheistic, rather than atheistic, because Buddhist teachings don't say there are definitely no gods, or that you mustn't worship them, but it doesn't say there necessarily are gods, either. It certainly doesn't say you must worship any gods. It just says the question of gods is not important. Therefore, there are Buddhist sects that worship gods, and there are Buddhist sects that don't, and there are also some Buddhists who, from the way they revered the Buddha, you would say they worshipped him as a deity, but they are all conformant to the basic teachings of Buddhism.

You are totally confused by bad translations of Buddhist texts. The gods that you refer to are PEOPLE who have attained Nirvana. Only when poorly translated into English could this even vaguely be confused with Brahma / Great Void -- the conscious self-aware universe. Buddhism states unequivocally that the universe is conscious. There is only one universe, no plural is possible (save by false dichotomies) and so Gods are not possible. God either is or is not, there is no in between. Worship or non-worship of enlightened masters has nothing to do with theism or atheism, and fabricating a new definition for a concept that doesn’t exist in Buddhism hardly helps explain Buddhism to anyone. It is just the blind leading the blind.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Nirvana is not Heaven. It does not involve the survival of the self, having pleasant experiences in a pleasant place, which is what characterises Heaven. In Buddhist sects that (perhaps influenced by Hinduism or Chinese folk religion) have gods and heavens, Nirvana is nothing to do with any of those.

Perhaps influenced by Hinduism? Are you aware that the Buddha was a Hindu who lived his entire life in India?

Your definition of Heaven is as flawed as your definition of Nirvana. Even in Christianity, Heaven is a place beyond physical suffering and sensual gratification, beyond all physicality. Guatama the Buddha said that Nirvana is not a physical place but a state of consciousness. If the self does not survive how could it then be a state of consciousness? Any distinction between Heaven and Nirvana is a false dichotomy and in order to fabricate such a distinction you have to twist both what Christians and Buddhists believe.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
The two beliefs in Buddhism that require a leap in faith (for a modern, educated person) are karma and reincarnation.

Oh come on, why does it require faith to believe that what goes around comes around? Believing that karma operates via an unconscious automated universe, now *that* requires doing some severe mental contortionism. As to reincarnation, it goes hand-in-hand with the existence of a loving God. It is the most logical thing in the world, if God exists then so must reincarnation. That is the only logical way that a loving conscious being could possibly setup the universe. Any alternative excludes the possibility of a loving God, necessitating either no God at all, or a spiteful God.
nam_siddharth
Buddha never supported the theory of the world created by God. It will be clear from the following verses, from Bhûridatta Jataka.

Quote:
If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why does he order such misfortune
And not create concord?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why prevail deceit, lies and ignorance
And he such inequity and injustice create?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Then an evil master is he, (O Aritta)
Knowing what's right did let wrong prevail!


sourse: http://www.buddhistinformation.com/buddhist_attitude_to_god.htm
BruceTheDauber
mike1reynolds wrote:

You are totally confused by bad translations of Buddhist texts. The gods that you refer to are PEOPLE who have attained Nirvana.


You are confused about the meaning(s) of the word "god". Many gods, probably most gods, in most religions are people who have been apotheosized. Heroes, kings, ancestors and sages after they die often start to be worshipped as gods. Probably, the majority of gods in the world are of that type.

Quote:
Only when poorly translated into English could this even vaguely be confused with Brahma / Great Void -- the conscious self-aware universe. Buddhism states unequivocally that the universe is conscious.


Far from it. It is more debatable that Brahman (which is not necessarily part of Buddhism) should be translated as "god" than that an apotheosized person should be called "god" or "a god". A god is normally a personage, but Brahman, though presumed to be in some sense conscious, is impersonal. That's a good reason for saying that the idea of Brahman is quite distinct from the idea of God (such as is presented in the Bible), because the Biblical God is very much a personage.

Quote:
Worship or non-worship of enlightened masters has nothing to do with theism or atheism


You are completely wrong on that point. A supernatural being (even if it was once a flesh-and-blood human being) that is worshipped is, by definition, a god. Therefore, a religion that recommends worshipping such beings is a theistic religion, and one that denies the existence of any such beings is an atheistic one.

Quote:
Perhaps influenced by Hinduism? Are you aware that the Buddha was a Hindu who lived his entire life in India?


Yes, I am aware of that, but the Buddha jettisoned many Hindu concepts. In some Buddhist sects, those concepts crept back in. Those sects, I would say, are influenced by Hinduism.

Quote:
Your definition of Heaven is as flawed as your definition of Nirvana. Even in Christianity, Heaven is a place beyond physical suffering and sensual gratification, beyond all physicality.


Again, you are wrong. What little description of heaven exists in the Bible indicates that it is presumed to be a place where where selfhood survives, and life continues in a recognizable form, so that the denizens of heaven continue to worship God. The extremely abstract idea of heaven that you attribute to Christianity is not built into the religion. It is a concept that SOME Christians adhere to, but not all.


Quote:
Guatama the Buddha said that Nirvana is not a physical place but a state of consciousness. If the self does not survive how could it then be a state of consciousness? Any distinction between Heaven and Nirvana is a false dichotomy and in order to fabricate such a distinction you have to twist both what Christians and Buddhists believe.


Any description of the Christian Heaven as purely a state of consciousness is modern, and is probably influenced by Eastern Religion. In general Christianity from Bible times until fairly recently, the normal view of heaven has always been that it is a place where people live after death (or after Judgement Day), along with angels and God, and it exists somewhere beyond the sky.

Quote:
Oh come on, why does it require faith to believe that what goes around comes around?


It doesn't require faith to believe that, in general, if you're bad to people around you, you won't get favours from them, and if you're good to them, you will. It does require faith to believe that your good and bad deeds will always be rewarded or punished accordingly, no matter whether or not you're caught out by other human beings, even if you die. It also takes faith to believe that the lucky or unlucky things that happen to you are punishments or rewards for things you did, and perhaps don't remember, in the past.

Quote:
Believing that karma operates via an unconscious automated universe, now *that* requires doing some severe mental contortionism.


Exactly. The Buddhist idea of karma requires the existence of a supernatural force (intelligent, but not necessarily personal) that can weigh up the good and bad that people do, and assign fate to them accordingly. It takes faith to believe in such a thing.

Quote:
As to reincarnation, it goes hand-in-hand with the existence of a loving God. It is the most logical thing in the world, if God exists then so must reincarnation.


God could exist, and not be loving. Or he could exist, and instead of offering reincarnation, send all people to heaven after their death. And he could not exist (by far the most likely scenario).
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
Buddha never supported the theory of the world created by God. It will be clear from the following verses, from Bhûridatta Jataka.

Quote:
If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why does he order such misfortune
And not create concord?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why prevail deceit, lies and ignorance
And he such inequity and injustice create?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Then an evil master is he, (O Aritta)
Knowing what's right did let wrong prevail!


sourse: http://www.buddhistinformation.com/buddhist_attitude_to_god.htm


Well, this author also states that Hinduism is “nontheistic”, which is both patently false and a meaningless statement. (How is nontheistic suppose to be different from atheistic? Given wikipedia’s definition it would seem that nontheist is atheistic without caring, which would be an utterly meaningless distinction from the term atheism.)

OK, if Buddhism rejects the notion of a conscious self-aware universe then who is Vairocana, what is the dharmadhatu, what is the Adi-buddha and the Samantabhadra Buddha?
mike1reynolds
BruceTheDauber wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:

You are totally confused by bad translations of Buddhist texts. The gods that you refer to are PEOPLE who have attained Nirvana.


You are confused about the meaning(s) of the word "god". Many gods, probably most gods, in most religions are people who have been apotheosized. Heroes, kings, ancestors and sages after they die often start to be worshipped as gods. Probably, the majority of gods in the world are of that type.

Quote:
Only when poorly translated into English could this even vaguely be confused with Brahma / Great Void -- the conscious self-aware universe. Buddhism states unequivocally that the universe is conscious.


Far from it. It is more debatable that Brahman (which is not necessarily part of Buddhism) should be translated as "god" than that an apotheosized person should be called "god" or "a god".

Only if you fabricate your own definitions as you go along. How can a human-being possibly be a self-aware universe? Brahma is quite explicitly a self-aware universe in Hinduism. Christianity isn’t as explicit, but point to a single Christian sect that denies that God is all-pervasive? It is only by splitting hairs, creating false dichotomies, and willfully confusing obviously distinct concepts (people vs. a self-aware universe) that you can introduce any confusion in what is an extremely elementary matter.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
A god is normally a personage, but Brahman, though presumed to be in some sense conscious, is impersonal.

The concept, when applied to a self-aware universe, is utterly meaningless. The term personage implies a personal realm distinct from the larger universe. If every particle in the universe forms a vast self-aware neural-network, what could the terms personal and impersonal mean when applied to this consciousness? It is like trying to attribute a color to darkness, it’s just meaningless word shuffling.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
That's a good reason for saying that the idea of Brahman is quite distinct from the idea of God (such as is presented in the Bible), because the Biblical God is very much a personage.

In Christianity, God refers to Itself as the beginning and the end, in other words an all pervasive consciousness. It is such a meaningless distinction that you are setting up here that alternately you could say that the Christian/Hindu view of God is both personal and impersonal, and yet at the same time neither personal nor impersonal. In other words it means absolutely nothing.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Worship or non-worship of enlightened masters has nothing to do with theism or atheism


You are completely wrong on that point. A supernatural being (even if it was once a flesh-and-blood human being) that is worshipped is, by definition, a god. Therefore, a religion that recommends worshipping such beings is a theistic religion, and one that denies the existence of any such beings is an atheistic one.

So you assert that Christianity is an atheistic religion since it denies the existence of anything that satisfies your definition of gods? These are just word games that have no meaningful bearing on the views of Christians and Hindus, much less on an absolutely reality that exists apart from anyone’s belief or disbelief, worship or non-worship.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Your definition of Heaven is as flawed as your definition of Nirvana. Even in Christianity, Heaven is a place beyond physical suffering and sensual gratification, beyond all physicality.


Again, you are wrong. What little description of heaven exists in the Bible indicates that it is presumed to be a place where where selfhood survives, and life continues in a recognizable form, so that the denizens of heaven continue to worship God.

Why are you so obsessed with worship? It is no more relevant to God’s existence than yours or mine. If no one worshiped you would you cease to exist? Would you even care? You project a “God” that is inferior to most human beings if you think It cares about such things.

As to the physicality of Heaven, nothing in either the Bible or the Catholic church supports such a notion. How many Christians do you know who believe in a Heaven of physicality? Not a one, I’m quite certain, you should get out more and talk to people more instead of getting lost in this sort of self-referential circular reasoning of concepts based on abstract terms that are so divorced from reality and human beliefs.

Yes, selfhood survives in Heaven, just as it does in Buddha’s description of Nirvana. You avoided the criticism in my last post, so I’ll repeat it: Buddha described Nirvana as a state of mind. A state of mind requires a surviving selfhood. What is the state of mind of a non-existent self?

You are getting confused by the emptiness doctrine, where an enlightened mind is like a clean mirror that only reflects. This is no more mutually exclusive with a surviving selfhood than particles and waves are mutually exclusive. Particles are distinct individual objects, while waves are not; waves flow from one to the next with no boundaries in between. In physics both are true simultaneously, there is no contradiction.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
The extremely abstract idea of heaven that you attribute to Christianity is not built into the religion. It is a concept that SOME Christians adhere to, but not all.

Name a sect that does not? It isn’t abstract at all, it is virtually universal to all religions. I am not aware of a single religion or shamanistic tradition that refers to Heaven or the spirit world as a place of physicality.


BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Guatama the Buddha said that Nirvana is not a physical place but a state of consciousness. If the self does not survive how could it then be a state of consciousness? Any distinction between Heaven and Nirvana is a false dichotomy and in order to fabricate such a distinction you have to twist both what Christians and Buddhists believe.


Any description of the Christian Heaven as purely a state of consciousness is modern, and is probably influenced by Eastern Religion.

I never suggested it did in such explicit terms, I was talking about Buddhism here and how the notion of Nirvana as the destruction of the self is completely incompatible with the notion of Nirvana as a state of mind. Your false notions of Buddhism are explicitly self-contradictory. Your false notions of Christianity are not explicitly contradictory, and so peripheral here, they are merely uniquely your own and not relevant to what virtually all Christians actually think. All Christians understand that Heaven is beyond sense gratification and physical suffering.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
In general Christianity from Bible times until fairly recently, the normal view of heaven has always been that it is a place where people live after death (or after Judgement Day), along with angels and God, and it exists somewhere beyond the sky.

It is a place only in the sense that the dream-planes are a “place” in Hinduism and shamanism. Does that makes dreams physical? No. Where is “beyond the sky”? These are not even remotely Christian theological concepts, you are simply taking the arbitrary unthought-out beliefs of the most ignorant Christian layman and trying to attach some significance in Christianity to it, very much like taking a grammar school child’s understanding as the final word on mathematics. Such statements have very little, if anything, to do with Christian theological arguments and understanding.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Oh come on, why does it require faith to believe that what goes around comes around?


It doesn't require faith to believe that, in general, if you're bad to people around you, you won't get favours from them, and if you're good to them, you will. It does require faith to believe that your good and bad deeds will always be rewarded or punished accordingly, no matter whether or not you're caught out by other human beings, even if you die. It also takes faith to believe that the lucky or unlucky things that happen to you are punishments or rewards for things you did, and perhaps don't remember, in the past.

Well, this is off the topic, but if it requires such a huge leap of faith, then why is it such a basic tenant of every world religion? When I say, what goes around comes around I’m talking about a fundamental principle of the universe, every bit as fundamental as conservation of mass and energy. At the quantum level, the universe is a vast neural network which rapidly arrived at karma as a required axiomatic principle in the first moments of the big bang. That is the only way that the pieces of the puzzle of the cosmic mind could possibly have self-organized in a stable, continuously progressive way.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Believing that karma operates via an unconscious automated universe, now *that* requires doing some severe mental contortionism.


Exactly. The Buddhist idea of karma requires the existence of a supernatural force (intelligent, but not necessarily personal) that can weigh up the good and bad that people do, and assign fate to them accordingly.

What is God, other than an intelligent, universal supernatural force? You deny the existence of God, then come up with a definitional phrase that exactly matches every theistic definition of God. This is just word games, it is fundamentally impossible for you to get around the concept of God in Buddhism without the use of semantic smoke and mirrors.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
It takes faith to believe in such a thing.

That is like saying that it requires faith to believe the sun will rise tomorrow. A blind man might think so, but for someone who has experience, faith is a paltry theoretical substitute for solid, grounded, practical understanding.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
As to reincarnation, it goes hand-in-hand with the existence of a loving God. It is the most logical thing in the world, if God exists then so must reincarnation.


God could exist, and not be loving. Or he could exist, and instead of offering reincarnation, send all people to heaven after their death. And he could not exist (by far the most likely scenario).

Surprise, surprise, you’re an atheist, who would have guessed? You’re trying to ram a square peg into a round hole. Buddhism looks atheistic only to atheists. Its that mirror thing, atheism is the dust on your mirror, so when you look at the Buddha all you see is the reflection of your own obscuring mental constructs that hold you imprisoned. This is precisely why Buddhism, especially Zen, is so focused on trying to destroy intellectual concepts. Such theorization is nothing but a hindrance to practicing the Buddha’s teachings. The Buddha taught how to directly apprehend the true nature of the universe, and anyone who thinks that this can be achieved through manipulating intellectual constructs is completely wasting their time and violating the most fundamental tenants of all Buddhist practices.
mike1reynolds
AdamantMonk quoted the Dalai Lama out of context saying that one could not be both Christian and Buddhist at the same time. Without context, the implication was that the two are fundamentally incompatible. But here is another quote (paraphrased) from the Dalai Lama:

“Christianity is a sort of mini-Buddhism, all of the tenants of Christianity are present in Buddhism, but some of the fundamental tenants of Buddhism are missing from Christianity.”

This completely contradicts the notion expressed by all three of you that Buddhism is “nontheistic” (whatever that is supposed to be as opposed to atheistic).

Another quote from the Dalai Lama is where he states that the Trikaya is identical, one in the same as the Trinity.
a_dubDesign
mike1reynolds wrote:

“Christianity is a sort of mini-Buddhism, all of the tenants of Christianity are present in Buddhism, but some of the fundamental tenants of Buddhism are missing from Christianity.”

Another quote from the Dalai Lama is where he states that the Trikaya is identical, one in the same as the Trinity.

I'd be intrested to know where you got the first quote from. As I recall, and its been a while since I've checked out buddhism, but I don't recall it having anything close to jesus dying on the cross to reconcile us to God. And from discussions with a friend of mine who is currently studying buddhism there topic of who God is is left mostly up to the individual, but that could just be his individaul sect, which he says is highly westernized.
mike1reynolds
You hit the nail on the head, "highly westernized". It gets absorbed and disolved into New Age beliefs. It also gets colored with western rational dichotomies which are largely alien to the mindset of Eastern religions.

As to Jesus' role, Buddhist recognize Jesus as a Buddha. While Jesus said '*I* am the only doorway', the Buddha said that a Buddha is the only doorway. While I don't expect Christians to accept this, I also fail to see a signficant theological difference in the two stances, other than the fact that one is more exclusionary.
AdamantMonk
mike1reynolds wrote:
AdamantMonk, you have some odd notions of Buddhism: no God, no Heaven? How is Nirvana different from Heaven?


Try no pearly gates and old man deeming whether you are fit to enter. Try every single person going to heaven so long as they pray and repent.

Compare that to devoting you entire life to Buddhism in order to possibly achieve Nirvana. (Which is in fact a state of existence, more than a place.)

mike1reynolds wrote:
You imply that Buddhism is atheistic, but you do back flips to avoid using the term, fabricating a term instead -- "nontheistic", which isn't a word in the English language.


It wasn't backflips, it was a brainfart. I apologise for having trouble conjuring the word "atheitsic" and thus, offending you.

mike1reynolds wrote:
Buddhism asserts that the entire universe is a self-aware being, even apparently empty space. When Buddhists talk about the Great Void as a personality that knows your thoughts, who is this but God?


Philosophically speaking, you may be correct.

I'd like to continue this argument but I'm having another brainfart and wouldn't want to offend you or anyone else.
mike1reynolds
AdamantMonk wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
AdamantMonk, you have some odd notions of Buddhism: no God, no Heaven? How is Nirvana different from Heaven?


Try no pearly gates and old man deeming whether you are fit to enter. Try every single person going to heaven so long as they pray and repent.

Sounds like a rebellion against Christianity rather than an affirmative belief.

AdamantMonk wrote:
Compare that to devoting you entire life to Buddhism in order to possibly achieve Nirvana. (Which is in fact a state of existence, more than a place.)

I thought you were arguing for a certain interpretation of Buddhism rather than against it.

AdamantMonk wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
You imply that Buddhism is atheistic, but you do back flips to avoid using the term, fabricating a term instead -- "nontheistic", which isn't a word in the English language.


It wasn't backflips, it was a brainfart. I apologise for having trouble conjuring the word "atheitsic" and thus, offending you.

You sound like the one who takes offense. I'm merely pointing out certain glaring logical flaws.

AdamantMonk wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
Buddhism asserts that the entire universe is a self-aware being, even apparently empty space. When Buddhists talk about the Great Void as a personality that knows your thoughts, who is this but God?


Philosophically speaking, you may be correct.

I'd like to continue this argument but I'm having another brainfart and wouldn't want to offend you or anyone else.

And you may be incorrect, but it doesn't sound like your ego could take it.
AdamantMonk
I was gonna try and edit that to not make myself seem like such a narrow ass, as I'm horrible with wording stuff.

I guess it's that old thing about everyone having to be right, but whatever. Tell me some of the basis of your arguments and I'll listen. I was under the impression that Buddhism is an Atheistic religion (kind of a contradiction I guess) as it's not immediately apparent that any sort of God is worshipped, or higher ranking than the Gotama Buddha. To those raised Christian it is hard to believe god being below any others.

So, sorry for jumping to conclusions it just seemed like you were being more combative than constructive and I personally don't believe that is the condition the only Buddhist thread should be in.
AdamantMonk
mike1reynolds wrote:
AdamantMonk wrote:
Compare that to devoting you entire life to Buddhism in order to possibly achieve Nirvana. (Which is in fact a state of existence, more than a place.)

I thought you were arguing for a certain interpretation of Buddhism rather than against it.


I didn't intend to ephasize possibly in such a way as to suggest it may not be possible to acheive nirvana, but instead to suggest that, unlike Chrisitanity's view of heaven, few Buddhists achieve Nirvana, while several devote their life to escaping Samsara. (Sorry for the run on scentence, just wanted to clarify that though.)
a_dubDesign
mike1reynolds wrote:

As to Jesus' role, Buddhist recognize Jesus as a Buddha. While Jesus said '*I* am the only doorway', the Buddha said that a Buddha is the only doorway. While I don't expect Christians to accept this, I also fail to see a signficant theological difference in the two stances, other than the fact that one is more exclusionary.

I think one significant difference, from the christian perspective, is that it wasn't through his life, or his enlightened status (don't really think thats the right word but the only one I can really think of, so I apologize) that we can be in relationship with God, it was through his death.

Quick question about nirvana, and I guess it holds some question of reincarnation as well. Is nirvana viewed as something we can achieve in this life, or is it something/someplace that one can only reach after they have learned all things they were meant to in this life?
mike1reynolds
AdamantMonk wrote:
I guess it's that old thing about everyone having to be right, but whatever. Tell me some of the basis of your arguments and I'll listen. I was under the impression that Buddhism is an Atheistic religion (kind of a contradiction I guess) as it's not immediately apparent that any sort of God is worshipped, or higher ranking than the Gotama Buddha. To those raised Christian it is hard to believe god being below any others.

In general, Buddhists don't worship anything or anyone, although some sects have a Catholic-like system of saints that they propitiate. Buddhists certainly don't place any Buddha above God. I think that some of the confusion comes in from the great diligence Guatama put on not allowing Buddhism to degenerate into a cult of personality the way Hinduism had and later Christianity did. And the same applies to God: you can’t kiss God’s butt, so why even try? The emphasis instead is on direct experience of God and your own soul nature.

AdamantMonk wrote:
So, sorry for jumping to conclusions it just seemed like you were being more combative than constructive and I personally don't believe that is the condition that the only Buddhist thread should be in.

Well, I think that it is harmful to portray Buddhism as an atheistic religion. Buddhism is susceptible to this for people who aren’t aware of the cultural and historical context of Hinduism to Buddhism, and how Buddhism was an attempt to reform the decay that had crept into Hinduism. Hinduism is a preeminently theist religion and that is one element of Hinduism that the Buddha did not take issue with. It was completely unnecessary to emphasis it to such a profoundly theistic culture.

Hinduism is an extremely diverse and complex religion, or more aptly set of religions, and the misconceptions that it had fallen into were numerous, complex and convoluted, which can make the Buddha’s many arguments difficult to translate. Some of the widespread misconceptions of 500 BC India have only resurfaced in our own time, and many other misconceptions of their time simply have no counterpart at all, not even in the modern era. So Buddhism is much more susceptible to distortion by ivory tower intellectuals than the much more simplistic theology of Christianity.

You are right in suggesting that I was getting hot under the collar, I think that religious ignorance and ethnocentrism are the worst flaws of American culture. If ignorance of non-Judao-Christian religions weren’t so widespread, I think that many of America’s worst attributes would dissolve. Most Christian reject Eastern religions because of the way they are so woefully misrepresented, when in fact all Eastern religions are superior to all Western religions, especially Islam. Travesties such as Islam and Mormonism were only possible because the bar was already set so low in Judeo-Christianity. So when Eastern religions are put forward as being fundamentally incompatible with Christianity it only makes the problem worse. The truth is that Eastern religions are imminently compatible with Christianity, the main difference being that Eastern religions are fuller, more complete, older and more matured. Western religions are destroying the world, but the Dalai Lama once said, and very rightly so, that if just 10% of the world were Buddhist that the world’s most critical problems would just dissolve away.
AdamantMonk
I like this Thread much better when it is filled with lots of helpful information such as this rather than people copying/pasting generic facts and spouting half-assed insults.

So correct me if I'm wrong, but from what you are saying, I could be led to understand that if someone were Atheistic, Buddhism is concerned so little with god that they could convert to Buddhism and still not have any beliefs in God (that it wouldn't affect their Buddhist life).
mike1reynolds
a_dubDesign wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:

As to Jesus' role, Buddhist recognize Jesus as a Buddha. While Jesus said '*I* am the only doorway', the Buddha said that a Buddha is the only doorway. While I don't expect Christians to accept this, I also fail to see a signficant theological difference in the two stances, other than the fact that one is more exclusionary.

I think one significant difference, from the christian perspective, is that it wasn't through his life, or his enlightened status (don't really think thats the right word but the only one I can really think of, so I apologize) that we can be in relationship with God, it was through his death.

Well, instead of trying to draw a parallel between Christianity and Buddhism in this regard I would tend to be more critical of this as a false interpretation of Christianity. When I was a child I use to ask why Jesus had to die to forgive our sins? It made absolutely no sense to me why God would couple these two, it sounded like the blood sacrifice of a primitive demonic religion to me, like the Viking death cult. But from the context of Eastern religions and karma it makes perfect sense without portraying God as blood thirsty: masters can take on the karma of their students and people can die of a disease from taking on the world’s karma (probably not as a conscious decision, but rather as the soul’s choice). An especially powerful master can take on and transmute huge amounts of karma. As such, Jesus didn’t die to forgive our sins, that is a poorly worded translation. But he did die in order to save the world, to take on enough of the world’s negative karma so that it would not destroy itself. When put into this context his saving the world and our personal relationship with God are two completely different things with no direct bearing on each other.

a_dubDesign wrote:
Quick question about nirvana, and I guess it holds some question of reincarnation as well. Is nirvana viewed as something we can achieve in this life, or is it something/someplace that one can only reach after they have learned all things they were meant to in this life?

Both propositions are true. Nirvana is a state of mind that allows one to escape from the cycle of reincarnation, but it can only be achieved while incarnate. Your question is very insightful and it convolutes my debate with BruceTheDauber because you’ve got me thinking more insightfully about the subject and I made some misstatements in my replies to him. Just as Jesus said, “my father’s home has many mansions” different Buddhist sects have their favorite heavenly abodes. In the Pure-Land sect of Buddhism (the largest religion in the world prior to the 1930’s) devotees aspire to go to Potala, the heavenly abode of the Goddess (feminine counterpart of God). Nirvana is not a spiritual realm but instead a state of mind that allows one to permanently remain in such a heavenly abode.

One question that I have always had is, what is the relationship between the attainment of Nirvana and the balancing of karma, since one must also balance one’s karma in order to escape from the cycle of reincarnation.
mike1reynolds
AdamantMonk wrote:
So correct me if i'm worng, but from what you are saying, I could be led to understand that if someone were Atheistic, Buddhism is concerned so little with god that they could convert to Buddhism and still not have any beliefs in god (that it wouldn't affect their Buddhist life).

Well, I think that it depends on how you arrived at atheism. When I was an atheist (12-21) it was because I searched for God in a Godless world and got extremely discouraged. But that was a conclusion or state of mind that was easily altered by having tangible mystical experiences. If one arrives at atheism as a result of intellectual smugness and nihilism then it becomes the classic enemy of Buddhism, since adherence to any intellectual concept is anathema to Buddhism. In Christianity they call this the ‘still small voice’; it is very hard to sense the spiritual realm, preoccupation with intellectual concepts or the mundane affairs of life can easily drown out the still small voice.
mike1reynolds
I should add that exactly the same is true of theism, having a rigid intellectual concept of God (or any other aspect of spirituality) is just as anathema to Buddhism as a rigid intellectual concept of no God.
BruceTheDauber
mike1reynolds, I don't know why it bothers or surprises you so much that Buddhism should be called nontheistic. It has been called so by many people over a long time, and nam_siddhartha quoted Buddhist scripture rubbishing the idea that Brahma is the creator, or that a benign, omnipotent creator being even exists or could exist. In fact, one of the arguments attributed to Buddha is very similar to an argument used by the atheist Roman philosopher Epicurus in the first century BC. So, it is plain from Buddhist scripture that the Buddhist attitude to God and gods is utterly different from that of the Western monotheist religions, Christianity, Judaism and Islam, and is also very different from polytheistic religions that place high emphasis on the worship of gods.

As to the definition of "god", I was not making it up as I went along. When the word is used as a noun, without capitalisation, it normally means "A being of supernatural powers or attributes, believed in and worshiped by a people, especially a male deity thought to control some part of nature or reality." -- I took that definition from an online dictionary. Note that worship is built into the definition, and personhood is implied (you can't be "male" without being person-like).

The God of the Bible was such a being, and was a personage like Zeus or Odin, before theologians much later came along and (under the influence of Greek philosophy) turned God into an almost-completely-abstract entity. It is impossible to read the Bible and not see God as a personage that either lives within the universe, or interacts with it from somewhere outside the universe. It needs to be remembered that Judaism evolved from polytheistic and henotheistic religion. Although modern priests of the monotheistic religions like to talk God as an about an abstract entity, they are not consistent in doing so, but frequently revert to talking about God as a person. Basically, the Abrahamic religions don't make any sense if you don't think of God as a personage. In particular, their scriptures constantly talk about God as a personage, doing person-like things, such as getting angry and being jealous, and loving this person and hating that, etc. Monotheists claim that there is only one God, and that God created the universe, but creating the universe is not part of the definition of "god", whereas being an object of worship, and being a personage, are. This becomes obvious when we look at polytheistic religions: nobody who knows the meaning of the word "god" would deny that Zeus, Odin and Amaterasu are gods, if they know what Ancient Greek religion, Norse religion, and traditional Japanese religion say about those beings, but none of them is responsible for the creation of the world. In fact, in all three religions, the universe emerged from chaos by a natural (not intelligently guided) process, and the first Gods emerged from that chaos in the same way. Yoruba religion (in West Africa) is interesting in this regard, because the supreme deity, Olorun existed before the world, but did not create it. Rather, his son, Oduduwa, created the world in order to impress Daddy, and human beings were created by another god, Obatala.

What all these religions have in common is their stress on worship of the God or gods. If the people fail to worship the deities, Bad Things will happen. This is completely different from Buddhism, which says that worshipping deities is a bit of a distraction from the more important job of pursuing Nirvana. So, while most religions are focused around worshipping gods, Buddhism is not. That seems to me like a good reason for describing Buddhism as "non-theistic".

Now, as to your claim that Heaven is not, according to Christianity, a place, you are just wrong. The Bible explicitly says that Heaven is a place:

And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.
(Genesis 1:6-8 KJV)


So, it is a place physically located "beyond the sky", or "above the stars", or in other words, beyond the edge of the visible universe. Later in the Bible, Enoch, and subsequently Jesus, rise up to heaven. Why up? Because that's where it is. Most Christians continued to believe in this conception until quite recently, and it was not only the ignorant laity, as you suggest: the Sistine Chapel was designed, on the orders of Pope Sixtus IV, to echo the shape of the universe as he understood it, with the arched ceiling representing Heaven, and the floor representing Earth.

So, heaven and Nirvana are quite different.
mike1reynolds
Well, I suppose that I need to soften my tone a bit. In attempting to find authoritative Buddhist comments on the subject what I found was extremely mixed an equivocal. I found two references to the Dalai Lama using the term nontheistic and one where he refers to Buddhism as being midway between atheism and theism, but the references are terse and vague. I found a more salient comment from a high ranking Tibetan lama where he adamantly rejects the Pope’s assertion that Buddhism is atheistic, asserts that various Buddhist sects are either theistic or agnostic: http://www.beliefnet.com/story/35/story_3562_1.html.

I found some references to Buddhist authorities who assert that Buddhism is atheistic, but they are exclusively from the Theradavan school. The Bhûridatta Jatakas is a Theradavan story. Note that Jatakas means story or tale rather than scripture (sutra). I have always been repelled by Theradavan Buddhism, it seemed much more primitive to me than the other sects, which accounts for my lack of knowledge of their possibly traditional atheistic stance.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
mike1reynolds, I don't know why it bothers or surprises you so much that Buddhism should be called nontheistic. It has been called so by many people over a long time, and nam_siddhartha quoted Buddhist scripture rubbishing the idea that Brahma is the creator, or that a benign, omnipotent creator being even exists or could exist.

And I replied to Siddhartha’s quote with several widely used Buddhist terms for God. Neither you nor he have made any attempt to account for this. What do you think the Adibuddha is if not God?

BruceTheDauber wrote:
In fact, one of the arguments attributed to Buddha is very similar to an argument used by the atheist Roman philosopher Epicurus in the first century BC.

Epicureanism is the very antithesis of Buddhism. “Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we may die” asserts that life is futile and the only meaning that one can get from life is through sense gratification.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
So, it is plain from Buddhist scripture that the Buddhist attitude to God and gods is utterly different from that of the Western monotheist religions, Christianity, Judaism and Islam, and is also very different from polytheistic religions that place high emphasis on the worship of gods.

Intellectuals love to split hairs, but the similarities far outweigh the differences. This is a large topic so I will just quote the conclusion from an excellent treatise on the topic at
http://www.alanwallace.org/Is%20Buddhism%20Really%20Nontheistic_.pdf.

While Buddhism is deemed nontheistic, the Vedas are regarded as polytheistic, and the Bible is monotheistic, we have seen that the cosmogonies of Vajrayana Buddhism, Vedanta, and Neoplatonic Christianity have so much in common that they could almost be regarded as varying interpretations of a single theory. Moreover, the commonality does not end there, for in the Near East, the writings of Plotinus (205-270) also influenced Islamic and Jewish theories of creation. This apparent unity could be attributed to mere coincidence, or to the historical propagation of a single, speculative, metaphysical theory throughout south Asia and the Near East.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
As to the definition of "god", I was not making it up as I went along. When the word is used as a noun, without capitalisation, it normally means "A being of supernatural powers or attributes, believed in and worshiped by a people, especially a male deity thought to control some part of nature or reality." -- I took that definition from an online dictionary. Note that worship is built into the definition, and personhood is implied (you can't be "male" without being person-like).

Since my arguments have been exclusively in regards to God and not gods, I was objecting to your altering the context of my statements. You can give monologues on gods if you want, but if you are going to have a discussion with someone who exclusively refers to the term God, by always changing the subject to something else, that makes it quite difficult to have a dialog.

Since you can’t seem to help yourself with regards to changing the subject I’ll switch terms to something unambiguous. From now on I will no longer use the term God, but instead use the ancient (and modern) Jewish term for God – the Source. The Source cannot possible be confused with gods, so I hope that this will put an end to meaningless tangents on gods.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
The God of the Bible was such a being, and was a personage like Zeus or Odin, before theologians much later came along and (under the influence of Greek philosophy) turned God into an almost-completely-abstract entity. It is impossible to read the Bible and not see God as a personage that either lives within the universe, or interacts with it from somewhere outside the universe.

The name Source certainly doesn’t sound like a person. What do you think is meant by, “I am the beginning and the end”? The obvious implication is that the Source encompasses all of the material and temporal universe.

What is an abstract entity? My guess is that only an atheist would refer to the Source as an abstract being, because an abstraction is something that is not manifest, it is just an idea. I have no idea how this relates to the Greeks, whose theology was quite primitive.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
It needs to be remembered that Judaism evolved from polytheistic and henotheistic religion. Although modern priests of the monotheistic religions like to talk God as an about an abstract entity, they are not consistent in doing so, but frequently revert to talking about God as a person. Basically, the Abrahamic religions don't make any sense if you don't think of God as a personage. In particular, their scriptures constantly talk about God as a personage, doing person-like things, such as getting angry and being jealous, and loving this person and hating that, etc.

You are obviously trying to highlight petty emotions, but jealousy aside, why do you think that the Source must be an emotionless robot if It exists? That would be subhuman, not superhuman.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Monotheists claim that there is only one God, and that God created the universe, but creating the universe is not part of the definition of "god", whereas being an object of worship, and being a personage, are.

So, because dictionary.com fails to mention creation, all the ancient religious definitions are trumped? When did dictionary.com become the final arbitrator? Webster’s definition of God mentions creation, so does Random House. This kind of contorted reasoning goes beyond ivory tower hubris, it is irrational.

As to personage -- I object to the label ‘personal’ since that implies an inside and an outside, but it is absurd to object to the label personage. The Source is an impersonal personage. Please define what a being that is not a personage is? It is an utterly self-contradictory concept with no possible meaning.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
This becomes obvious when we look at polytheistic religions: nobody who knows the meaning of the word "god" would deny that Zeus, Odin and Amaterasu are gods, if they know what Ancient Greek religion, Norse religion, and traditional Japanese religion say about those beings, but none of them is responsible for the creation of the world. In fact, in all three religions, the universe emerged from chaos by a natural (not intelligently guided) process, and the first Gods emerged from that chaos in the same way. Yoruba religion (in West Africa) is interesting in this regard, because the supreme deity, Olorun existed before the world, but did not create it. Rather, his son, Oduduwa, created the world in order to impress Daddy, and human beings were created by another god, Obatala.

It is that utterly irrelevant subject of gods again. The subject that we are debating is whether or not Buddhism acknowledges the Source. I have never once addressed the subject of gods, other than to say that it is of no consequence to the topic at hand.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
What all these religions have in common is their stress on worship of the God or gods. If the people fail to worship the deities, Bad Things will happen.

Show me a single reference that says that Brahma is going to get you if you don’t worship It? Show me a single Taoist reference that says that the Supreme Ruler will get you if you don’t worship it? Your atheism is entirely a rebellion against the primitive Judeo-Christian religions and has no bearing on the much more advanced and matured Eastern religions, which you seem to be largely unaware of.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
This is completely different from Buddhism, which says that worshipping deities is a bit of a distraction from the more important job of pursuing Nirvana. So, while most religions are focused around worshipping gods, Buddhism is not. That seems to me like a good reason for describing Buddhism as "non-theistic".

Being an avidly nonworshiping theist, I couldn’t care less. As I said several times before, the Source doesn’t give a hoot. You can talk about cavemen and their rituals all you want, it has no bearing on the subject, which is that most Buddhist sects do acknowledge the Source.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Now, as to your claim that Heaven is not, according to Christianity, a place, you are just wrong. The Bible explicitly says that Heaven is a place:

It is a place only in the sense that Potala of the Pureland sect of Buddhism (the largest religion in the world until the 1930’s) or the Buddha Realms are places. Hinduism refers to it as the “astral realm”, or lokas. So what about the 6 realms of existence in Mahayana Buddhism? Where are the asuras and the hungry ghosts? Are any of these physical locations?

BruceTheDauber wrote:
So, it is a place physically located "beyond the sky", or "above the stars", or in other words, beyond the edge of the visible universe.

So are all of the above mentioned realms beyond the visible universe? Obviously not, they are extra-dimensional. Same with Heaven.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Later in the Bible, Enoch, and subsequently Jesus, rise up to heaven. Why up?

It is not up in 3D, it is extra-dimensional, just as all of the above mentioned realms are attributed to be up or down in Buddhism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
So, heaven and Nirvana are quite different.

It would help if you were speaking from personal experience rather than pure conjecture. Buddhism teaches that intellectual concepts are worthless without direct experience, and those of who have had such experiences see the light in an upward direction.

Here is one of numerous experiences and dreams I’ve had going back to the age of 3: One night after a high ceremony with my lama, I woke up feeling like I was shooting up in a rocket. Physically my room was unaltered, but everything was turning progressively more radiant white. I felt the acceleration slow, stop and reverse. As I reached the peak of my ‘assent’ and started to ‘fall’ some part of me desperately wanted to stay at that ‘elevation’ and it felt as though I were flailing at thin air trying to hold onto something, though my arms didn’t move. As I started ‘falling’ the radiance progressively faded, and for a split second everything was normal. As I continued to ‘fall’ the room started turning progressively more and more radiant red. I felt as though I were underwater, with the pressure getting progressive more dense. When I reached the bottom of the ‘trajectory’ I started to panic. The red was lovely, but there was something indefinably unpleasant and agonizing about that ‘location’. Just as I started to panic, hoping I wouldn’t get stuck there, but I quickly began ascending again. Once all the radiance had faded this time I abruptly ‘stuck’ at the nonradiant middle ‘location’ that was my ordinary ‘local’.

I went through a period where every time I would realize that I was dreaming I would suddenly get swamped with light and accelerated at such high speed that it would jar me awake. The first two times it happened I immediately woke me up, still seeing the light with such intensity that I was blinded for 10 or 15 seconds. On the third occasion I forced myself to remain asleep, and in the context of the dream, I shot upwards into a sky of intensely bright white light instead of a cloud layer. I have no idea what happened until I was latter dropped down from the sky again. As I descended I was quite depressed about have to come back ‘down’.

When I was three I dreamed of the death experience in my previous incarnation. As the room spun violently and the wind started roaring I screamed for my mother, but my voice was drowned out by the roar. I realized I was daying and was sucked ‘up’ into white light. My mother came in and shook me and I ‘dropped’ out of the light with great consternation. I had been in a state of profound euphoria in the light and I was terribly upset that I had screamed in fear. Later I told my great grandmother that this place sucks and I couldn’t understand why anyone cried at funerals because Heaven was some much better than here. Many years later I found out that I had told here much more. After a mystical experience at 21 which shattered my atheism, I knew for certain that that dream could not have just been rehashed daily events, since I had never been to the country to see a run down country shack like the one I died in. When I told my father he said that my great grandmother had told him what I told her, and that unbeknownced to me I had also told her that in my previous incarnation I had been a woman living in Indiana.

Current quantum physics cosmologies postulates a minimum of 11 dimension to account for the observable universe. You have excessively rigid notions of physicality that are both contrary to science and Buddhism.
nam_siddharth
Bhûridatta Jataka wrote:
If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why does he order such misfortune
And not create concord?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why prevail deceit, lies and ignorance
And he such inequity and injustice create?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Then an evil master is he, (O Aritta)
Knowing what's right did let wrong prevail!


mike1reynolds wrote:
Well, this author also states that Hinduism is “nontheistic”


The author of above quote is Buddha, And Buddha has never said anything about Hinduism, because Hinduism was not present in time of Buddha.

mike1reynolds wrote:
I found two references to the Dalai Lama using the term nontheistic and one where he refers to Buddhism as being midway between atheism and theism, but the references are terse and vague. I found a more salient comment from a high ranking Tibetan lama where he adamantly rejects the Pope’s assertion that Buddhism is atheistic, asserts that various Buddhist sects are either theistic or agnostic:


Tibetan Buddhism is the most corrupted form of Buddhism. The Lamas “so called bhuddhist monks” do not even follow the 10 rules must to be followed by Buddhist monks told by Buddha.

If you think that Dalai Lama’s Buddhism is the real Buddhism then Buddhism may be theistic. But if, Buddha’s teachings are real Buddhism then Buddhism is atheist, which is clear from above quote.

mike1reynolds wrote:
Hinduism is a preeminently theist religion and that is one element of Hinduism that the Buddha did not take issue with. It was completely unnecessary to emphasis it to such a profoundly theistic culture.


India was never a country of single religion. Many atheistic as well as theistic religions were present in India at Buddha’s time. Hinduism is not a religion. The name Hindu was given to Indians by foreigners after more than thousand years from Buddha. So, it was really unnecessary and impossible to emphasis Hinduism.
BruceTheDauber
mike1reynolds wrote:
Well, I suppose that I need to soften my tone a bit.


I think you should. You seem to sound angry all the time.

Quote:
I found some references to Buddhist authorities who assert that Buddhism is atheistic, but they are exclusively from the Theradavan school.


Of course. The Therevadan school is based on the Buddha's teachings and not much else. The Mahayana school is hybridized with local Asian religions, including Vedic religion (or Hinduism) and Chinese folk religion. That's why it's full of gods and heavens and hells and so on, things that Therevada regards as irrelevances.

Quote:
I have always been repelled by Theradavan Buddhism, it seemed much more primitive to me than the other sects, which accounts for my lack of knowledge of their possibly traditional atheistic stance.


Well, there's the problem. When you talk about "Buddhism" you mean only Mahayana Buddhism, which is actually what is recorded of the Buddha taught plus a whole bunch of gods and demons and heavens and hells that were believed in by the local people when Buddhism arrived in various areas, but which actually have nothing to do with the philosophy that the Buddha taught.

Now, the Buddha didn't teach a lot about gods, except to suggest that they were part of creation like everything else, and that worshipping them was not relevant to the pursuit of Nirvana.

So, if you define Buddhism inclusively, it's a non-theistic religion. Whether you worship gods, or pay any attention to them at all, is up to you as an individual, or depends on what sect you happen to follow, but is not determined by the core teachings of Buddhism.

Quote:
And I replied to Siddhartha’s quote with several widely used Buddhist terms for God. Neither you nor he have made any attempt to account for this. What do you think the Adibuddha is if not God?


Were those terms used by Siddhartha? What did he say about those things? Adibuddha is a Mahayana term. It is not part of Buddhism's core teachings.

Quote:
Epicureanism is the very antithesis of Buddhism. “Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we may die” asserts that life is futile and the only meaning that one can get from life is through sense gratification.


You are wrong about Epicureanism. It is actually a quite serious-minded philosophy that recommends a life of moderation. Take a look, if you're interested:

http://www.epicurus.net/index.html

http://www.epicurus.net/en/principal.html

But that's beside the point, really. Epicurus produced an argument to the effect that an omnipotent God cannot also be omni-benevolent, or there would not be evil in the world. That's very similar to the argument produced by the Buddha.

Quote:
Intellectuals love to split hairs, but the similarities far outweigh the differences.


I don't think it is splitting hairs to say that if one religion says that people who don't worship its god/gods, they will go to hell or suffer horribly on Earth, it is significantly different from a religion that says gods are irrelevant and a distraction.


Quote:
Since my arguments have been exclusively in regards to God and not gods


You seem not to be aware that God is a god.

Quote:
From now on I will no longer use the term God, but instead use the ancient (and modern) Jewish term for God – the Source. The Source cannot possible be confused with gods, so I hope that this will put an end to meaningless tangents on gods.


Well, if you imagine "The Source" in a way that means it can't be confused with gods, you're running away from the concept of God that we find in the Bible, which very definitely can be "confused" with gods, because it is one. On the other hand, the Greek goddess Gaia could be characterised as "the Source", since everything else emerges from her, and Amun/Mut could be called "the Source" in Egyptian religion, since everything emerges from him/her.

The Hellenic concept of "The First Cause", discussed by Aristotle, only finds its way into the Bible in John 3:16. The rest of the Bible portrays God as a personage. The God of the Bible, particularly the O.T. is closer to Zeus than to any abstract thing such as Aristotle's First Cause.

Later, of course, theologians combined the Biblical God with the philosophical "God", to create the schizoid concepts which are the half-abstract-half-personal entities that are the Gods of modern Christianity, Judaism and Islam.

Quote:
What do you think is meant by, “I am the beginning and the end”? The obvious implication is that the Source encompasses all of the material and temporal universe.


So? That doesn't make it not a personage. What kind of being goes around telling people "I am the beginning and the end"? A rather bossy one, I'd say, boastful, even. Not very abstract and impersonal.

Quote:
What is an abstract entity?


In this context, something that is quite unpersonlike. Something that doesn't get upset when people forget to make sacrifices, and throw thunderbolts about the place in a huff, like a typical god.

Quote:
You are obviously trying to highlight petty emotions, but jealousy aside, why do you think that the Source must be an emotionless robot if It exists? That would be subhuman, not superhuman.


It would not be subhuman. Our human emotions come out of our animal nature: we need them for our survival. One would expect that something immortal and indestructible and knowing everything wouldn't be inclined to get upset by little events on little Earth, or to get ecstatic about them either, especially as it knew what was going to happen long before it did, and therefore isn't exactly surprised.

Quote:
When did dictionary.com become the final arbitrator? Webster’s definition of God mentions creation, so does Random House.


Webster includes this definition: a being or object believed to have more than natural attributes and powers and to require human worship;

Quote:
As to personage -- I object to the label ‘personal’ since that implies an inside and an outside, but it is absurd to object to the label personage. The Source is an impersonal personage. Please define what a being that is not a personage is? It is an utterly self-contradictory concept with no possible meaning.


The phrase "all living beings" includes lots of things, shrimps for instance, that are beings, but not personages. So the idea that being-ness entails personage-ness is clearly a mistake. If Websters is correct, anything that can be conceived as existing can be a being, and certainly many things can be conceived as existing that are obviously not personages or a person. So, if Websters is your authority, there's no contradiction.


Quote:
It is that utterly irrelevant subject of gods again.


It's not irrelevant. YHWH is a god. Allah is a god. Christians, Jews and Muslims are urged to worship those deities. They are theistic religions. Buddhists are under no obligation to worship any deities, or to believe in them, or to pay them any attention at all.

Quote:
The subject that we are debating is whether or not Buddhism acknowledges the Source.


No, we're discussing whether it is appropriate to call Buddhism "nontheistic".

Quote:
Show me a single reference that says that Brahma is going to get you if you don’t worship It? Show me a single Taoist reference that says that the Supreme Ruler will get you if you don’t worship it?


Exactly. See the difference between Buddhism and theistic religions, now? No obligation and no pressure to worship any supernatural beings at all. Totally opposite to theistic religions such as Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

Quote:
Your atheism is entirely a rebellion against the primitive Judeo-Christian religions and has no bearing on the much more advanced and matured Eastern religions, which you seem to be largely unaware of.


You are hilarious. Between the two of us, you seem to be the one who hasn't bothered reading the Dhamapadda. You're going on about "the Source" and all sorts of things that have nothing to do with what the Buddha himself is documented as saying.

Quote:
BruceTheDauber wrote:
Now, as to your claim that Heaven is not, according to Christianity, a place, you are just wrong. The Bible explicitly says that Heaven is a place:

It is a place only in the sense that Potala of the Pureland sect of Buddhism (the largest religion in the world until the 1930’s) or the Buddha Realms are places.


Whatever "sense" you may think applies, Heaven is a place. Nirvana is not a place.

Quote:
So are all of the above mentioned realms beyond the visible universe? Obviously not, they are extra-dimensional. Same with Heaven.


There's no reason to suppose that the notion of "extra-dimensional" existed in the minds of the people who wrote the Bible. Not that its relevant. Even "other realms" are still places. Nirvana, by contrast, is not a place.

Quote:
BruceTheDauber wrote:
Later in the Bible, Enoch, and subsequently Jesus, rise up to heaven. Why up?

It is not up in 3D, it is extra-dimensional, just as all of the above mentioned realms are attributed to be up or down in Buddhism.


Really, you just are determined to believe whatever the hell you've decided to believe, regardless of the facts or the evidence. The Bible explicitly says UP. If you don't like it, tough. YOU may think that Heaven isn't up, but the people who wrote the Bible definitely did.

Quote:
BruceTheDauber wrote:
So, heaven and Nirvana are quite different.

It would help if you were speaking from personal experience rather than pure conjecture.
[/quote]

Stop being silly. How am I supposed to have experienced Heaven or Nirvana? I can only say what is said about them in the teachings of the relevant religions. One is a place, and the other is not.

Quote:
...When I was three I dreamed of the death experience in my previous incarnation...


Bully for you, but irrelevant.

Quote:
Current quantum physics cosmologies postulates a minimum of 11 dimension to account for the observable universe. You have excessively rigid notions of physicality that are both contrary to science and Buddhism.


Not that it's relevant, but the mathematical idea of extra physical dimensions has nothing to do with the religious idea of other realms.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
Well, this author also states that Hinduism is “nontheistic”


The author of above quote is Buddha, And Buddha has never said anything about Hinduism, because Hinduism was not present in time of Buddha.


http://www.buddhistinformation.com/buddhist_attitude_to_god.htm wrote:

Indeed most Asian religions (with the possible exception of some extremely devotional forms of Hinduism) are essentially non-theistic, in that God does not occupy the central place that is accorded to him in monotheistic religious traditions.

The author of the web page is the Buddha? Dr Gunasekara said that all but the most extreme forms of Hinduism are nontheistic.

As to the Buddha never talking about Hinduism, he taught extensively about the problems in Vedic culture. Western intellectuals split hairs over labels like this, but it is considered anathema to all forms of Eastern mysticism.

nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
I found two references to the Dalai Lama using the term nontheistic and one where he refers to Buddhism as being midway between atheism and theism, but the references are terse and vague. I found a more salient comment from a high ranking Tibetan lama where he adamantly rejects the Pope’s assertion that Buddhism is atheistic, asserts that various Buddhist sects are either theistic or agnostic:


Tibetan Buddhism is the most corrupted form of Buddhism. The Lamas “so called bhuddhist monks” do not even follow the 10 rules must to be followed by Buddhist monks told by Buddha.

If you think that Dalai Lama’s Buddhism is the real Buddhism then Buddhism may be theistic. But if, Buddha’s teachings are real Buddhism then Buddhism is atheist, which is clear from above quote.

In order to arrive at this conclusion you have to assume that Theravada Buddhism is the only correct form of Buddhism and that all other forms of Buddhism are false. Presumably you have arrived at this conclusion as a result of the intellectual analysis by western historians of Buddhism. Historians have wildly inaccurate conclusions about non-European histories, such as the insistence of Egyptologists that the Sphinx is half it’s actual age. You have to have a sort of religious faith in their conclusions in order to concur with them.

My approach is entirely different, it is based on spiritual attainment, as judged by my own mystical experiences. As far as I have seen the Theravadans are purely intellectuals not mystics. I have never read of meaningful or profound mystical experiences from Theravadans, which to my mind means that they have only historical records but have escewed the heart and soul of the Buddha’s teachings, which are geared towards shattering the intellect in order to have mystical experiences and gain spiritual attainment.

As to Tibetan Buddhism, it is based as much on the teachings of it’s founder, Padma Sambhava, as much as on the Buddha’s teachings. I take issue with many aspects of Padma Sambhava’s teachings, which suffer from many of the same flaws as Shivaism, which had a huge impact on Padma Sambhava’s teachings as attested to by his adoption of the Shivic term ‘tantra’, but the one aspect of Tibetan Buddhism that impresses me the most is it’s emphasis on the oversoul.

The Kahuna religion is the only other religion on the planet that has any knowledge of oversouls. Carl Jung touched on it with his dream that lead him to his theory of the collective subconscious, but that is another tangent. My point is that coming into alignment with your Buddhic mind (soul) is not sufficient. The soul path, the straight and narrow path, the middle path, the Tao, is a harrowing high wire act. One false step and you’ll fall off the high wire. The oversoul path with it’s network of criss-crossed soul paths creates a stable flat ground that one can walk on with ease. It is a group Buddha, a collective Buddhic mind. I adhere to this belief not because of an intellectual study of religions, but because I have direct experience with the partial awakening of my oversoul. I have seen my oversoul, so it is not a matter of conjecture or historical intellectual analysis to me.

nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
Hinduism is a preeminently theist religion and that is one element of Hinduism that the Buddha did not take issue with. It was completely unnecessary to emphasis it to such a profoundly theistic culture.


India was never a country of single religion.

My father is a swami, I am intimately familiar with Hinduism. Previously in this thread I have referred to it as “more aptly a set of religions”. Are you familiar with the encounter between Sri Ramakrishna and the Tota Puri? I think that it is the most fascinating encounter between men of extremely different spiritual paths to be found in the last thousand years of recorded history.

nam_siddharth wrote:
Many atheistic as well as theistic religions were present in India at Buddha’s time.

There was certainly a plethora of intellectual philosophies, as witnessed in the extensive delineation of false philosophical beliefs that the Buddha presents in the Diamond Sutra. Whether one labels these as religious practices is another matter. The predominant forms of religious practice in his day as our own are Vaishnavism, Shivaism/Tantra and Skaktism, all of which are very much theistic.

nam_siddharth wrote:
Hinduism is not a religion. The name Hindu was given to Indians by foreigners after more than thousand years from Buddha. So, it was really unnecessary and impossible to emphasis Hinduism.

It is impossible to accurately understand Buddhism without understanding it’s context in Vedic culture, just as most Christians are woefully ignorant of Christ’s teachings because they are almost completely ignorant of Judaism.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
Well, this author also states that Hinduism is “nontheistic”


The author of above quote is Buddha, And Buddha has never said anything about Hinduism, because Hinduism was not present in time of Buddha.


http://www.buddhistinformation.com/buddhist_attitude_to_god.htm wrote:

Indeed most Asian religions (with the possible exception of some extremely devotional forms of Hinduism) are essentially non-theistic, in that God does not occupy the central place that is accorded to him in monotheistic religious traditions.

The author of the web page is the Buddha? Dr Gunasekara said that all but the most extreme forms of Hinduism are nontheistic.



Fot you again:-

Quote:
If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why does he order such misfortune
And not create concord?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why prevail deceit, lies and ignorance
And he such inequity and injustice create?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Then an evil master is he, (O Aritta)
Knowing what's right did let wrong prevail!


The auther of above quote is Buddha. And it is from Bhûridatta Jataka.

(Pls tell me, how many times I need to post above quote, to make you understand, above which quote I am talking about)
mike1reynolds
Mr. Attention Deficit Disoder quotes from a website by Dr. Gunasekara. In that website Dr. Gunasekara quotes the Buddha’s statements in the Bhûridatta Jataka which I never commented on. I did comment on Dr. Gunasekara’s false statement on this website about Hinduism supposedly being nontheistic.

Dr. Gunasekara @ http://www.buddhistinformation.com/buddhist_attitude_to_god.htm wrote:

Indeed most Asian religions (with the possible exception of some extremely devotional forms of Hinduism) are essentially non-theistic, in that God does not occupy the central place that is accorded to him in monotheistic religious traditions.


nam_siddharth wrote:

mike1reynolds wrote:

nam_siddharth wrote:

mike1reynolds refers to Dr. Gunasekara’s statement, not the Buddha’s wrote:

Well, this author also states that Hinduism is “nontheistic”

The author of above quote is Buddha, And Buddha has never said anything about Hinduism, because Hinduism was not present in time of Buddha.

The author of the web page is the Buddha? Dr Gunasekara (the author of the quote that I am referring to) said that all but the most extreme forms of Hinduism are nontheistic.

The auther of above quote is Buddha. And it is from Bhûridatta Jataka.

(Pls tell me, how many times I need to post above quote, to make you understand, above which quote I am talking about)


The author of the web page that you provided a link for is Dr. Gunasekara. While he does indeed quote the Buddha from the Bhûridatta Jataka at another location, he also makes the statement I quoted above and it is not a quote from the Buddha. Let me repeat, the quote from Dr. Gunasekara that I provided above is from the website that you gave a link for.

Please tell me how many times we have to go over this simple matter before you can know what is on the web page that you provided a link to?

(Do all atheists that claim to be Buddhists suffer from severe attention deficit disorder?)
mike1reynolds
BruceTheDauber wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
Well, I suppose that I need to soften my tone a bit.


I think you should. You seem to sound angry all the time.

I was referring to my assertion that Buddhism is not nontheistic, which I have to acknowledge is untrue. I was not referring to my emotional state, which you are projecting from yourself. You are very upset at conservative expressions of Judeo-Christianity, but none of your criticisms apply to liberal expressions of Judeo-Christianity, much less to Taoist, Hindu or Buddhist expressions of theism. So you project what you hate onto all other expressions of theism, even though it is completely out of context.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
I found some references to Buddhist authorities who assert that Buddhism is atheistic, but they are exclusively from the Theravadan school.


Of course. The Therevadan school is based on the Buddha's teachings and not much else. The Mahayana school is hybridized with local Asian religions, including Vedic religion (or Hinduism) and Chinese folk religion. That's why it's full of gods and heavens and hells and so on, things that Therevada regards as irrelevances.

You aren’t really interested in Buddhist practices and theology other than as a crutch for your atheism, which is why you reject all sects of Buddhism save for the one that is most convenient for your argument.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
And I replied to Siddhartha’s quote with several widely used Buddhist terms for God. Neither you nor he have made any attempt to account for this. What do you think the Adibuddha is if not God?


Were those terms used by Siddhartha? What did he say about those things? Adibuddha is a Mahayana term. It is not part of Buddhism's core teachings.

“From the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries Buddhism had declined in Sri Lanka due to persecution by first the Inquisition and then the missionaries of its Christian colonial rulers. It was revived in the late nineteenth century with the help of British scholars and theosophists. As a result, Sri Lankan Buddhism is sometimes characterized as "Protestant" Buddhism”
http://www.berzinarchives.com/buddhism_world_today/current_sit_buddhism_world.html

While the texts may be older, the practice of Theravada Buddhism is not. It was disrupted and the traditional understanding of those texts is predominantly the result of Westerner scholarship. Your assertion that Theravada has the greatest authority on the Buddha’s teachings is not supported by the historical facts. Atheism was injected into it by westerners and I find it highly doubtful in the extreme that it was part of the Buddha’s teachings.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Epicureanism is the very antithesis of Buddhism. “Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we may die” asserts that life is futile and the only meaning that one can get from life is through sense gratification.


You are wrong about Epicureanism. It is actually a quite serious-minded philosophy that recommends a life of moderation. Take a look, if you're interested:

I didn’t say it wasn’t serious minded, I said it was a materialist philosophy that is the very antithesis of Buddhism. In the Diamond Sutra, among other places, the Buddha taught that materialist philosophies are false. You only assert a significant parallel because of your emphasis on atheism rather than Buddhism. All mainstream Buddhist adamantly reject materialist philosophies.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Intellectuals love to split hairs, but the similarities far outweigh the differences.


I don't think it is splitting hairs to say that if one religion says that people who don't worship its god/gods, they will go to hell or suffer horribly on Earth, it is significantly different from a religion that says gods are irrelevant and a distraction.

While Judeo-Christianity asserts that certain religions were demonic, it contains no such admonitions that all non-Believers will go to Hell. Only the most conservative fundamentalists and Catholics hold such a view. This is not part of the Jewish, Hindu, Taoist, Jain or shamanistic views of the Great Spirit. The Quran is the only religious text that codifies the kind of bigoted religious intolerance that you falsely ascribe to all forms of theism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Since my arguments have been exclusively in regards to God and not gods


You seem not to be aware that God is a god.

You are a slave to labels, which is precisely why Buddhism, Taoism, and Zen in particular (which combines the two) places so much emphasis on the fact that rigid intellectual labels can be a terrible hindrance to spiritual practices.

The only reason that you refuse to recognize any distinction between theism and animism is because you want to characterize theism as being as primitive as the animism of the Greeks or Aztecs. But even among shamanistic traditions there is often a very clear distinction, for example, in most native North American shamanistic beliefs the Great Spirit is clearly differentiated from animistic spirits. The Great Spirit is all inclusive, we are all part of the Great Spirit, whereas all animistic spirits are distinct and external.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
From now on I will no longer use the term God, but instead use the ancient (and modern) Jewish term for God – the Source. The Source cannot possible be confused with gods, so I hope that this will put an end to meaningless tangents on gods.

Well, if you imagine "The Source" in a way that means it can't be confused with gods, you're running away from the concept of God that we find in the Bible, which very definitely can be "confused" with gods, because it is one.

Your definitions are fast and loose, fabricated at your convenience: gods refer either to powerful people (such as God-realized enlightened avatars in Hinduism) or it refers to animistic spirits. The Great Spirit – the Source is neither of these things.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
On the other hand, the Greek goddess Gaia could be characterised as "the Source", since everything else emerges from her, and Amun/Mut could be called "the Source" in Egyptian religion, since everything emerges from him/her.

Gaia/Terra is the goddess of the Earth, she is not an all inclusive being. I’m not familiar with Amun/Mut but being a creator god does not make it all inclusive or non-animistic. The Aztecs had multiple creator gods, four who worked together and then sacrificed themselves to create the universe. These are all animistic polytheistic beliefs that are completely distinct from the Great Spirit.

You are a mirror image of that which you hate, like a child who riles and rebels against a parent only to become just like the parent. The Buddha taught that all attractions and repulsions keep one bound and imprisoned by the object that one despises or desires. You are even more fanatical than fanatical fundamentalist Christians. You hate Christianity so much that you can’t even acknowledge the concept of the Great Spirit as a distinct concept. While fundamentalist Christians can find few points of agreement with me, at least I can get them to meet me half way and acknowledge my concepts, even if they don’t agree with them. Refusing to acknowledge the concept of the Source as distinct from the concept of animism is fanatical and intellectually dishonest. I don’t assert that it is intentional dishonesty, it is yourself that your are deluding as much as anyone, because your atheism is so fragile that you can’t accept monotheism as a distinct concept even in abstract. You can only acknowledge theism in it’s most primitive form, if you were to acknowledge a mature form of theism such as that expressed in Hinduism, Taoism and most forms of Buddhism, it would apparently undermine your fanatical religious faith in atheism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
What do you think is meant by, “I am the beginning and the end”? The obvious implication is that the Source encompasses all of the material and temporal universe.


So? That doesn't make it not a personage.

Your argument is so manipulative that you are getting your argument confused with mine, you don’t even seem to know what my argument is. You are the one who is fanatically asserting that the Source must necessarily not be a personality.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
What kind of being goes around telling people "I am the beginning and the end"? A rather bossy one, I'd say, boastful, even. Not very abstract and impersonal.

The Mandelbrot set and many other kinds of fractals are made up of an infinite number of little copies of itself. By your reasoning, to acknowledge this mathematical fact is to automatically attribute petty emotions and manipulativeness to fractals.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
What is an abstract entity?


In this context, something that is quite unpersonlike.

You have defined one meaningless term with another. What is a ‘non-person’?

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Something that doesn't get upset when people forget to make sacrifices, and throw thunderbolts about the place in a huff, like a typical god.

The Great Spirit does none of these things. Once again you are creating a strawman argument by reducing theism to it’s most primitive expression and ignoring all Eastern expressions of theism. You are incapable of addressing Eastern theistic concepts because that is too hard for your argument to deal with here. As you have forced me to repeat over and over, the Source doesn’t give a hoot what you believe in as long as you do good works and make good karma. Even the Bible asserts that bigoted expressions of theism are repulsive to the Source. “Many will come to me and say, Lord Lord, I preached in your name, Lord Lord I healed in your name. But I will say tuff titties, you know me not.”

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
You are obviously trying to highlight petty emotions, but jealousy aside, why do you think that the Source must be an emotionless robot if It exists? That would be subhuman, not superhuman.


It would not be subhuman. Our human emotions come out of our animal nature: we need them for our survival. One would expect that something immortal and indestructible and knowing everything wouldn't be inclined to get upset by little events on little Earth, or to get ecstatic about them either, especially as it knew what was going to happen long before it did, and therefore isn't exactly surprised.

So compassion and love are animalistic survival traits that a higher being would lack? People who lack these traits are inhuman and subhuman. You project all sorts of petty human emotions on the Source and then assert that It must be stripped of anything good in human beings in order to be a higher being? This is extremely contorted reasoning.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
When did dictionary.com become the final arbitrator? Webster’s definition of God mentions creation, so does Random House.


Webster includes this definition: a being or object believed to have more than natural attributes and powers and to require human worship;

Once again you jump to definition two and avoid definition one like the plague because it doesn’t support your point.

“1 capitalized : the supreme or ultimate reality: as a : the Being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness who is worshiped as creator and ruler of the universe b Christian Science : the incorporeal divine Principle ruling over all as eternal Spirit : infinite Mind”

Note that while it says that God is worshiped, it says nothing about It desiring to be worshiped. People are always willing to kiss ass if they think it will give them an advantage, but even in Christianity, much less in all Eastern forms of theism, It doesn’t give a damn. The essential issue stressed in the Bible is avoidance of demon worship. While the Great Spirit couldn’t care less about being worshiped for It’s own sake, it is a far cry better than worshiping demons. Since deceived demon worship in the form of animism is dramatically less common in the more mature spiritual traditions of the East, those traditions contain no such admonitions. Absolutely nowhere at all in Taoism is the Supreme Ruler worshiped in any way shape or form. Similarly, the non-dualistic path in Hinduism which focuses exclusively on Brahma/the Source, involves no worship what-so-ever, only meditation.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
As to personage -- I object to the label ‘personal’ since that implies an inside and an outside, but it is absurd to object to the label personage. The Source is an impersonal personage. Please define what a being that is not a personage is? It is an utterly self-contradictory concept with no possible meaning.


The phrase "all living beings" includes lots of things, shrimps for instance, that are beings, but not personages. So the idea that being-ness entails personage-ness is clearly a mistake. If Websters is correct, anything that can be conceived as existing can be a being, and certainly many things can be conceived as existing that are obviously not personages or a person. So, if Websters is your authority, there's no contradiction.

This is like herding dumb animals, trying to cut off every ridiculous bullsh*t definition, OK CONSCIOUS BEING. Any idiot can figure out that shrimp are utterly beside the point. So let’s try this again kiddies, What is a conscious being that is not a personage mean? Quote obviously it means absolutely nothing, or you would have address the obvious meaning of my question the first time around.

These are just childish machinations and my patience with your pedantic manipulativeness is growing thin. Either meet me half way in an honest manner and address my questions and assertions at face value without this kind of childish manipulation or this ridiculous debate is over.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
It is that utterly irrelevant subject of gods again.


It's not irrelevant. YHWH is a god. Allah is a god. Christians, Jews and Muslims are urged to worship those deities. They are theistic religions. Buddhists are under no obligation to worship any deities, or to believe in them, or to pay them any attention at all.

For God’s sake ENOUGH about primitive Judeo-Christian worship that is utterly alien to and of absolutely no interest to me. It is a dishonest strawman argument, I have repeated my views dozens of times on this manner and for you to keep changing the subject is manipulative and intellectually dishonest. Address my Eastern theistic point of view that stems from Taosim and Hinduism, or go find somebody that actually has the point of view that you are arguing against. Your behavior in this regard is extremely insulting and rude and I’m simply not going to respond to it anymore.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Show me a single reference that says that Brahma is going to get you if you don’t worship It? Show me a single Taoist reference that says that the Supreme Ruler will get you if you don’t worship it?


Exactly. See the difference between Buddhism and theistic religions, now?

Exactly what? Hinduism and Taoism are not Buddhism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
No obligation and no pressure to worship any supernatural beings at all. Totally opposite to theistic religions such as Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

Hinduism and Taoism are incontrovertibly theistic religions that do not require any worship. (Do you have attention deficit disorder or am I speaking Greek to you?)

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
Your atheism is entirely a rebellion against the primitive Judeo-Christian religions and has no bearing on the much more advanced and matured Eastern religions, which you seem to be largely unaware of.


You are hilarious. Between the two of us, you seem to be the one who hasn't bothered reading the Dhamapadda. You're going on about "the Source" and all sorts of things that have nothing to do with what the Buddha himself is documented as saying.

I didn’t say it did have anything to do with Buddhism, you forced me to go on an on about a childishly simple definition because you are so arrogant that you refuse to acknowledge the concept even in abstract.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
BruceTheDauber wrote:
Now, as to your claim that Heaven is not, according to Christianity, a place, you are just wrong. The Bible explicitly says that Heaven is a place:

It is a place only in the sense that Potala of the Pureland sect of Buddhism (the largest religion in the world until the 1930’s) or the Buddha Realms are places.


Whatever "sense" you may think applies, Heaven is a place. Nirvana is not a place.

Even Theravada Buddhism acknowledges Buddha Realms, so you have just denied all expressions of Buddhism, which highlights the fact that you are only interested in Buddhism as crutch for your atheism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
So are all of the above mentioned realms beyond the visible universe? Obviously not, they are extra-dimensional. Same with Heaven.


There's no reason to suppose that the notion of "extra-dimensional" existed in the minds of the people who wrote the Bible. Not that its relevant. Even "other realms" are still places. Nirvana, by contrast, is not a place.

It is an experience, not a concept. You expect all mystics living in primitive agrarian cultures to express their experiences in terms of multi-dimension physics to primitive peasants. What a realistic expectation. And yet some do, Celtic druids explicitly referred to 4 extra dimensions. The axes are Heaven/Hell, the universe of cosmic fire/cosmic ice (not like the moral axis of Heaven/Hell) and two others dimensions that are more closely coupled: an up/down dimension that is coupled with another good/evil dimension, such that elves are up/good, dwarves are down/good, trolls are up/evil and orcs down/evil.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
BruceTheDauber wrote:
Later in the Bible, Enoch, and subsequently Jesus, rise up to heaven. Why up?

It is not up in 3D, it is extra-dimensional, just as all of the above mentioned realms are attributed to be up or down in Buddhism.


Really, you just are determined to believe whatever the hell you've decided to believe, regardless of the facts or the evidence.

I don’t believe in anything. I eschew all intellectual concepts, just as the Buddha taught, and based my understanding exclusively on what I can verify from personal experience. You are the one who makes up your faith in intellectual concepts that you have no experience with as you go along. Your “facts” are all appeals to some theological authority that you don’t even believe in beyond the point that you can twist it into a crutch for atheism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
The Bible explicitly says UP. If you don't like it, tough. YOU may think that Heaven isn't up, but the people who wrote the Bible definitely did.

I asserted it is up. You aren’t reading my statements with the least bit of thoughtfulness, you are just having an argument with yourself in your own head that has little if anything to do with my statements.

In 3D space there is no such thing as up. But there are directions in super-string and membrane theory which have very distinct biases which are up and down.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
BruceTheDauber wrote:
So, heaven and Nirvana are quite different.

It would help if you were speaking from personal experience rather than pure conjecture.


Stop being silly. How am I supposed to have experienced Heaven or Nirvana?
[/quote]
Uhhh… maybe by practicing Buddhism perhaps?

BruceTheDauber wrote:
I can only say what is said about them in the teachings of the relevant religions. One is a place, and the other is not.

Whatever, conjecture and intellectualize away. The Buddha discouraged all speculation in favor of direct experience, but you have to actually practice Buddhism to achieve the Buddhism goals of direct perception. You will only do what the Buddha discouraged, engaging exclusively in speculation and conjecture, while putting on pretenses of understanding Buddhism.

BruceTheDauber wrote:
Quote:
...When I was three I dreamed of the death experience in my previous incarnation...


Bully for you, but irrelevant.

Direct experience is only irrelevant to non-Buddhists. To Buddhists, direct experience is all that counts. Speculation, especially when pretentiously put forward as authoritative, is nothing more than an attempt to stroke one’s own ego.

Quote:
Current quantum physics cosmologies postulates a minimum of 11 dimension to account for the observable universe. You have excessively rigid notions of physicality that are both contrary to science and Buddhism.


Not that it's relevant, but the mathematical idea of extra physical dimensions has nothing to do with the religious idea of other realms.[/quote]
Well, the god has spoken the final absolute truth so it must be so.

You are quite certain that human consciousness is not capable of extending into these other dimensions, when the truth is that it has always been their. Every particle in the universe is already interacting in those dimensions. But of course, the lord god Bruce asserts that this couldn’t possibly have any effect on human consciousness, so it must not be so.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
Mr. Attention Deficit Disoder quotes from a website by Dr. Gunasekara. In that website Dr. Gunasekara quotes the Buddha’s statements in the Bhûridatta Jataka which I never commented on. I did comment on Dr. Gunasekara’s false statement on this website about Hinduism supposedly being nontheistic.

Dr. Gunasekara @ http://www.buddhistinformation.com/buddhist_attitude_to_god.htm wrote:

Indeed most Asian religions (with the possible exception of some extremely devotional forms of Hinduism) are essentially non-theistic, in that God does not occupy the central place that is accorded to him in monotheistic religious traditions.


nam_siddharth wrote:

mike1reynolds wrote:

nam_siddharth wrote:

mike1reynolds refers to Dr. Gunasekara’s statement, not the Buddha’s wrote:

Well, this author also states that Hinduism is “nontheistic”

The author of above quote is Buddha, And Buddha has never said anything about Hinduism, because Hinduism was not present in time of Buddha.

The author of the web page is the Buddha? Dr Gunasekara (the author of the quote that I am referring to) said that all but the most extreme forms of Hinduism are nontheistic.

The auther of above quote is Buddha. And it is from Bhûridatta Jataka.

(Pls tell me, how many times I need to post above quote, to make you understand, above which quote I am talking about)


The author of the web page that you provided a link for is Dr. Gunasekara. While he does indeed quote the Buddha from the Bhûridatta Jataka at another location, he also makes the statement I quoted above and it is not a quote from the Buddha. Let me repeat, the quote from Dr. Gunasekara that I provided above is from the website that you gave a link for.

Please tell me how many times we have to go over this simple matter before you can know what is on the web page that you provided a link to?

(Do all atheists that claim to be Buddhists suffer from severe attention deficit disorder?)


Again for you:----

I provided link for that website for quote of Buddha, and I had quoted only quote of Buddha everytime if you remember. But your comments were on Gunasekara for what?

Buddhism is what Buddha says, not what Dalai Lama, Gunasekara or you says.

Perhaps, you need it once again:-

Quote:
If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why does he order such misfortune
And not create concord?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Why prevail deceit, lies and ignorance
And he such inequity and injustice create?

If the creator of the world entire
They call God, of every being be the Lord
Then an evil master is he, (O Aritta)
Knowing what's right did let wrong prevail!


Is There any chances from theism from above quote.
nam_siddharth
Quote:
When Ananthapindika, a wealthy young man met the Buddha at the bamboo groove at Rajagriha, the Buddha made a few statements about the existence of God and the real cause behind the creation of beings in this world. These views are summarized as below:

1. If God is indeed the creator of all living things, then all things here should submit to His power unquestioningly. Like the vessels produced by a potter, they should remain without any individuality of their own. If that is so, how can there be an opportunity for any one to practice virtue?

2. If this world is indeed created by God, then there should be no sorrow or calamity or evil in this world, for all deeds, both pure and impure, must come from Him.

3. If it is not so, then there must be some other cause besides God which is behind Him, in which case He would not be self-existent.

4. It is not convincing that the Absolute has created us, because that which is absolute cannot be a cause. All things here arise from different causes. Then can we can say that the Absolute is the cause of all things alike? If the Absolute is pervading them, then certainly It is not their creator.

5. If we consider the Self as the maker, why did it not make things pleasant? Why and how should it create so much sorrow and suffering for itself?

6. It is neither God nor the self nor some causeless chance which creates us. It is our our deeds which produce both good and bad results according to the law of causation.

7. We should therefore abandon the heresy of worshipping God and of praying to him. We should stops all speculation and vain talk about such matters and practice good so that good may result from our good deeds.


So we are here to talk about teachings of Buddha, not for talking about God and sects of Buddhism.
AdamantMonk
Actually I believe that we are here to discuss all elements of Buddhism. Including sects of Buddhism and Their involvment with God, Though it may be a product of controversy.
mike1reynolds
“From the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries Buddhism had declined in Sri Lanka due to persecution by first the Inquisition and then the missionaries of its Christian colonial rulers. It was revived in the late nineteenth century with the help of British scholars and theosophists. As a result, Sri Lankan Buddhism is sometimes characterized as "Protestant" Buddhism”
http://www.berzinarchives.com/buddhism_world_today/current_sit_buddhism_world.html

The good doctor's false comments on Hinduism reflect the purely intellectual state of Theravada Buddhism and it’s lack of understanding of the origins of Buddhism. It is not a living tradition, it was destroyed and was only revived in the last 100 years. And it was not revived by Sri Lankans, it was revived by western intellectuals who injected it with western atheism and highlighted this text in a manner that horribly distorts it's context.

The problem with the Theravada texts is that Theravada is a dead tradition that has been striped of the cultural context and understanding provided by a living tradition passed on from generation to generation. As demonstrated by the link that you provided from Dr. Gunasekara, it conclusively proves that Theravadan scholars lack a meaningful understanding of the cultural context out of which Buddhism evolved from Vedic culture.

So the Buddha said there was no such thing as God. Well, he said there is no such thing as self also. Does that mean you don't exist just as God doesn't exist? Who or what is reading this if you don't exist?

If Buddha claimed there is no such thing as God, why is he discussing God with Brahmans?

The Two Brahmans

"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."

The essential factor here is that Vedic culture has more than one term for a monotheistic God, but the terms are not synonyms to each other. Buddha embraced the notion of Brahma and rejected the notion of Isvara. Both terms would be translated as the Supreme Being, but they have radically different implications attached to them in Vedic culture.

I'm not sure what text your last quotes were summarized from, since they were summaries and not direct quotes of a sutra, but here is a closely related sutra involving the same student and the same sort of discussion. But here the term for God is left untranslated so that the real context can be elucidated.

Anathapindika

"Who is it that shapes our lives? Is it Isvara, a personal creator? If Isvara be the maker, all living things should have silently to submit to their maker's power. They would be like vessels formed by the potter's hand; and if it were so, how would it be possible to practice virtue? If the world had been made by Isvara there should be no such thing as sorrow, or calamity, or evil; for both pure and impure deeds must come from him. If not, there would be another cause beside him, and he would not be self-existent. Thus, thou seest, the thought of Isvara is overthrown.

This appears at first that Buddha has contradicted himself. He claimed to know the path to Brahma, yet discounts the existence of the Supreme Lord Isvara, the creator.

In the context of his day. Lord Isvara corresponds roughly to the western misconception of God as the white haired, long bearded almighty dispensing justice from his throne in heaven. The Lord Isvara is a personal, understandable God Being sitting on a throne that must be worshiped and appeased. Common practice of the day was making animal sacrifice to Lord Isvara. Buddha also taught the futility of animal sacrifice which once again relates to the worship of Isvara.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
“So the Buddha said there was no such thing as God. Well, he said there is no such thing as self also. Does that mean you don't exist just as God doesn't exist? Who or what is reading this if you don't exist?


There is a Hindi/Pali word Aatma, which is used for both, self and soul. The Buddha denied any soul independent from body. It is what the above quote says.

There is a indian theory, which says that Aatma(self or soul) is a part of Paramatma (God or creator).

Quote:
If Buddha claimed there is no such thing as God, why is he discussing God with Brahmans?


Buddha is known to teach a person with one's own believes. Buddha's mission was to teach Dhamma, not to teach atheism. So he teaches theistic people in his own language. But if anytime the question arises, whether God exist or not, He denied the existance of God.

The following verses will help you to understand His way.

Quote:
1. On one occasion, the Buddha was living near the town of Rajagaha at a spot in the Bamboo Grove called the Squirrel's Feeding Place.

At that time a young householder named Sigalaka arose early and set out from Rajagaha with freshly washed clothes and hair. With palms together held up in reverence, he was paying respect towards the six directions: that is east, south, west, north, lower and upper.

2. Meanwhile the Buddha dressed himself in the early morning, took his bowl and robe and went in to Rajagaha on alms round. On the way, he saw Sigalaka worshipping the six directions. Seeing this, the Buddha said to him: "Young man, why have you risen in the early morning and set out from Rajagaha to worship in such a way?"

"Dear sir, my father on his deathbed urged me, 'My son, you must worship the directions'. So, dear sir, realizing, honoring, respecting, and holding sacred my father's request, I have risen in the early morning and set out from Rajagaha to worship in this way."

"But, young man, that is not how the six directions should be worshipped according to the discipline of the noble ones."

"Then how, dear sir, should the six directions be worshipped according to the discipline of the noble ones? I would appreciate it if you would teach me the proper way this should be done."

"Very well, young man, listen and pay careful attention while I tell you."
.
.
.
.
27. "And how, young man, does the noble disciple protect the six directions? These six directions should be known: mother and father as the east, teachers as the south, spouse and family as the west, friends and colleagues as the north, workers and servants as the lower direction, and ascetics and monks as the upper direction.
.
.
.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/digha/dn-31-ksy0.html

Will you suggest that Buddha was teaching to worship directions now?
mike1reynolds
I edited my post above a couple of times, reread it. Why is the Buddha talking about God with Brahmans if he rejects the notion of God? To summarize, the Buddha embraced the Vedic concept of Brahma and rejected the Vedic notion of Isvara. Only by taking this out of context and ignoring his embrace of Brahma can one misconstrue his teachings as atheistic. The essential quality of Isvara is not that it was a Supreme Being, but that it was a primitive petty human image of God that had petty human emotions and required blood sacrifices. This is very much in contrast with the understanding of Brahma, which the Buddha embraced.

As to the Buddha asserting no soul, now this is just silly, how can one reincarnate if there is no part of the self that survives death?
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
To summarize, the Buddha embraced the Vedic concept of Brahma and rejected the Vedic notion of Isvara.


In the Bhûridatta Jataka, God is translated for Brahma. So Buddha was neither accepting Brahma nor Ishwara nor Paramatma as creater of world.

As far about reincarnation, it was His way to teach people with one's own believes, which is clear from my above post
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
To summarize, the Buddha embraced the Vedic concept of Brahma and rejected the Vedic notion of Isvara.


In the Bhûridatta Jataka, God is translated for Brahma. So Buddha was neither accepting Brahma nor Ishwara nor Paramatma as creater of world.

So how do you reconcile this with the the sutra of Two Brahmans? Note that a Jakatas is not a sutra or scripture, it is a story or 'tale'.

nam_siddharth wrote:
As far about reincarnation, it was His way to teach people with one's own believes, which is clear from my above post

Well, it isn't clear to me. You quoted a summary of some unspecified text. So you assert that the Buddha only taught about reincarnation as an artifice and that he didn't in fact believe in reincarnation?
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
You quoted a summary of some unspecified text.


I have also provide link for full context.

For you again:-
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/digha/dn-31-ksy0.html
nam_siddharth
Many times, some verses apears contradicting each other. But you should remember that "Tripitika" was not written by Buddha himself. It was written by followers of Buddha after his death. In case of contradiction, The following quotes will help you, what is right and what is wrong.

Buddha wrote:
“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”
mike1reynolds
I don't see how the text in the link you provided has any bearing on the validity or invalidity of either theism or reincarnation.

As to the atman, asserting that every souls is a part of the All Soul, that every self is a part of the Self, is not an in anyway a denial of individual souls and reincarnation as far as I can tell. Nirvana is a merging with the cosmic mind, not Annihalation. We are each puzzle-pieces and attaining Nirvana is like finding one's location in the cosmic puzzle and becoming connected to the whole.

BTW, why do you keep capitolizing the word him in reference to Buddha? That is contrary to his many teachings against turning him into a cult of personality. "If you see the Buddha on the road, chop his head off" is one of the most often sited statements of the Buddha by Buddhists. Do you know what it means?
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
Many times, some verses apears contradicting each other. But you should remember that "Tripitika" was not written by Buddha himself. It was written by followers of Buddha after his death.
Well, thats great, but what does the Tripitika have to do with sutra of the Two Brahmans?

nam_siddharth wrote:
In case of contradiction, The following quotes will help you, what is right and what is wrong.

Buddha wrote:
“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

Well, it would seem that you haven't been reading my posts, since I have asserted repeatedly that faith in texts is a paltry substitute for direct experience. As I said before, I do not believe in anything, I go only on what I have been able to verify from my own direct experience of spiritual reality.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
"If you see the Buddha on the road, chop his head off" is one of the most often sited statements of the Buddha by Buddhists. Do you know what it means?


Perhaps you are talking about Tibetan buddhists. It only proves that so-called Tibetan buddhists are more anti-buddhist than a buddhist.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
Many times, some verses apears contradicting each other. But you should remember that "Tripitika" was not written by Buddha himself. It was written by followers of Buddha after his death.
Well, thats great, but what does the Tripitika have to do with sutra of the Two Brahmans?


You mean the sutras are not from Tripitika?
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
Many times, some verses apears contradicting each other. But you should remember that "Tripitika" was not written by Buddha himself. It was written by followers of Buddha after his death.
Well, thats great, but what does the Tripitika have to do with sutra of the Two Brahmans?


You mean the sutras are not from Tripitika?

No it is not. It's name in Pali is the Tevigga Sutta and it comes from the Dîgha-Nikâya.

As to the age of the Bhûridatta Jataka, the only reference that I can find to it's origin indicates that it was written in the 13th century.
http://www.kotterajamahaviharaya.lk/pdf/_%20Buddhist%20Tales%20for%20Young%20&%20Old%20-%20Vol.%202,%20'King%20Fruitful'%20(Text%20Version).pdf

I tried everything to get frihost to properly hook that link, but it just won't do it. The only way to get there is to cut and paste the link.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
Many times, some verses apears contradicting each other. But you should remember that "Tripitika" was not written by Buddha himself. It was written by followers of Buddha after his death.
Well, thats great, but what does the Tripitika have to do with sutra of the Two Brahmans?


You mean the sutras are not from Tripitika?

No it is not. It's name in Pali is the Tevigga Sutta and it comes from the Dîgha-Nikâya.


Then what the hell you know about Buddhism? Dîgha-Nikâya is a part of Tripitika.


PS. The link provided by you is not working.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
You mean the sutras are not from Tripitika?

No it is not. It's name in Pali is the Tevigga Sutta and it comes from the Dîgha-Nikâya.


Then what the hell you know about Buddhism? Dîgha-Nikâya is a part of Tripitika.

I stand corrected. But your characterization of the Tripitika appears to be entirely false.

"Suttapitaka: Suttapitaka consists of the original discourses of the Buddha, and is the most authentic source of our knowledge of dhamma. It falls into five divisions called Nikayas (and sometimes also agamas) grouped according to the size, style and particular arrangement of the suttas. They are Digha Nikaya, Majjhima Nikaya, Samyutta Nikaya, Anguttara Nikaya and Khudhaka Nikaya.

Digha Nikaya, the first book of the Suttapitaka, is a collection of long discourses. It is divided into three parts called Sila Khanda, Mahavagga and Patheya or Patikavagga. This work consists of 34 very lengthy suttas, with the Barahmajala-sutta translated as the excellent net' or perfect net' as the first one. It is a very important sutta, explaining moral precepts and various philosphical views. Another very important sutta of this collection is the Mahaparinibana-sutta which furnishes a historical account of the Master's last days."

http://www.ibiblio.org/radha/rpub003.htm

nam_siddharth wrote:
PS. The link provided by you is not working.

I know, I edited the post to say that frihost simply won't hook the link properly, it must be cut and pasted.
nam_siddharth
nam_siddharth wrote:
You mean the sutras are not from Tripitika?

mike1reynold wrote:
No it is not. It's name in Pali is the Tevigga Sutta and it comes from the Dîgha-Nikâya.


Quote:
The Pali Canon as a whole is called the Three Baskets or Tipitika in Pali (Tripitika in Sanskrit) because it contains three major sections, or “baskets.” The Three Baskets are:

I. The Sutta-pitika (or Sutra-pitika) which contain all the sermons or talks given by the Buddha. The Sutta-pitika is further broken down into five collections (nikayas):

1. The Digha-nikaya or Long Discourses

2. The Majjhima-nikaya or Middle Length Discourses

3. The Samyutta-nikaya or Connected Discourses

4. The Anguttara-nikaya or Numerical Discourses

5. Khuddaka-nikaya or Short Collection. This collection actually consists of a number of short works, some of which are very well known all by themselves such as: the Dhammapada, the Itivuttaka, the Udana, the Sutta-nipata, the Therigatha, the Theragatha, and the Jataka tales.

II. The Vinaya-pitika consists of the monastic precepts and related stories and material. The Vinaya is divided up as follows:

1. Suttavibhanga - which is the analysis of the precepts. This is broken down into the Mahavibhanga or Great Analysis which looks at the precepts for monks, and the Bhikkhunivibhanga or Nun's Analysis which analyzes the precepts for nuns.

2. The Khandhaka - which provides a wealth of material about the life of the early Sangha and highlights of the Buddha's teaching career. It also provides those rules pertaining to the organization and life of the Sangha as a whole. This part is divided into the Mahavagga or Great Section, and the Cullavagga or Small Section.

3. Parivara or Accessory - which is another presentation of the precepts in a very terse form for memorizing.

III. Finally there is the Abhidhamma which contains the systematic analysis of the teachings found in the sutta and vinaya collection. This is divided into the following works:

1. Dhammasangani - Explication of Dhamma

2. Vibhanga - Division

3. Dhatukatha - Discourse on the Elements

4. Puggalapannatti - Description of Persons

5. Kathavatthu - Subjects of Discourse

6. Yamaka - Pairs

7. Patthana - Causal Relation
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
"If you see the Buddha on the road, chop his head off" is one of the most often sited statements of the Buddha by Buddhists. Do you know what it means?


Perhaps you are talking about Tibetan buddhists. It only proves that so-called Tibetan buddhists are more anti-buddhist than a buddhist.

It is a Zen teaching. What does "more anti-buddhist than a buddhist" mean?

You falsely characterized the Tripitika as untrustworthy and written at a latter date when in fact it is considered the most authoritative record of the Buddha's teachings. So now how do you reconcile the 13th century tale that supports your point with the authoritative sutta that supports my point?
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
"If you see the Buddha on the road, chop his head off" is one of the most often sited statements of the Buddha by Buddhists. Do you know what it means?


Perhaps you are talking about Tibetan buddhists. It only proves that so-called Tibetan buddhists are more anti-buddhist than a buddhist.

It is a Zen teaching. What does "more anti-buddhist than a buddhist" mean?

You falsely characterized the Tripitika as untrustworthy and written at a latter date when in fact it is considered the most authoritative record of the Buddha's teachings. So now how do you reconcile the 13th century tale that supports your point with the authoritative sutta that supports my point?


I just said, that tripitika was not written by Buddha himself, but by his pupils, after his death.

For your kind information "Bhûridatta Jataka" and all the Jataka are parts of Tripitika.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
I just said, that tripitika was not written by Buddha himself, but by his pupils, after his death.

And I just quoted a source countradicting your assertion, which you have yet to support. Here is the quote I provided again:

"Suttapitaka: Suttapitaka consists of the original discourses of the Buddha, and is the most authentic source of our knowledge of dhamma. It falls into five divisions called Nikayas (and sometimes also agamas) grouped according to the size, style and particular arrangement of the suttas. They are Digha Nikaya, Majjhima Nikaya, Samyutta Nikaya, Anguttara Nikaya and Khudhaka Nikaya.”

http://www.ibiblio.org/radha/rpub003.htm

nam_siddharth wrote:
For your kind information "Bhûridatta Jataka" and all the Jataka are parts of Tripitika.

So then it would seemingly also be "not written by Buddha himself, but by his pupils, after his death", makig your criticism of the Two Brahmans Scripture irrelevant.

Knowing very little about a dead tradition like Theravada, as I have said repeatedly, I asked you about the link I provided which seems to say that the Bhûridatta Jataka was written in the 13th century. (As I said, Frihost won’t underline the whole link because of it's convoluted name, you'll have to cut and paste the web address into a browser). Even if it wasn't, how do you reconcile a low ranking 'story' with the "most authentic source of our knowledge of dhamma"?

At very best for your assertion, the Two Brahmans Scripture and the Bhûridatta story were written under the same context, but the Suttapitaka scriptures are more authoritative than any Jataka story. No matter how you slice it you are latching on to the less relevant text and ignoring the more relevant one.
nam_siddharth
I never said that two brahmans tell is false. Please read my old posts.

again for you:-
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
“So the Buddha said there was no such thing as God. Well, he said there is no such thing as self also. Does that mean you don't exist just as God doesn't exist? Who or what is reading this if you don't exist?


There is a Hindi/Pali word Aatma, which is used for both, self and soul. The Buddha denied any soul independent from body. It is what the above quote says.

There is a indian theory, which says that Aatma(self or soul) is a part of Paramatma (God or creator).

Quote:
If Buddha claimed there is no such thing as God, why is he discussing God with Brahmans?


Buddha is known to teach a person with one's own believes. Buddha's mission was to teach Dhamma, not to teach atheism. So he teaches theistic people in his own language. But if anytime the question arises, whether God exist or not, He denied the existance of God.

The following verses will help you to understand His way.

Quote:
1. On one occasion, the Buddha was living near the town of Rajagaha at a spot in the Bamboo Grove called the Squirrel's Feeding Place.

At that time a young householder named Sigalaka arose early and set out from Rajagaha with freshly washed clothes and hair. With palms together held up in reverence, he was paying respect towards the six directions: that is east, south, west, north, lower and upper.

2. Meanwhile the Buddha dressed himself in the early morning, took his bowl and robe and went in to Rajagaha on alms round. On the way, he saw Sigalaka worshipping the six directions. Seeing this, the Buddha said to him: "Young man, why have you risen in the early morning and set out from Rajagaha to worship in such a way?"

"Dear sir, my father on his deathbed urged me, 'My son, you must worship the directions'. So, dear sir, realizing, honoring, respecting, and holding sacred my father's request, I have risen in the early morning and set out from Rajagaha to worship in this way."

"But, young man, that is not how the six directions should be worshipped according to the discipline of the noble ones."

"Then how, dear sir, should the six directions be worshipped according to the discipline of the noble ones? I would appreciate it if you would teach me the proper way this should be done."

"Very well, young man, listen and pay careful attention while I tell you."
.
.
.
.
27. "And how, young man, does the noble disciple protect the six directions? These six directions should be known: mother and father as the east, teachers as the south, spouse and family as the west, friends and colleagues as the north, workers and servants as the lower direction, and ascetics and monks as the upper direction.
.
.
.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/digha/dn-31-ksy0.html

Will you suggest that Buddha was teaching to worship directions now?


The story shows the way of Buddha to teach people. In the above story, He is not really suggesting to worship directions.

mike1reynolds wrote:
the Suttapitaka scriptures are more authoritative than any Jataka story


What the hell wrong with you? Do you know where is Jataka stories, it is in Suttapitaka.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
“So the Buddha said there was no such thing as God. Well, he said there is no such thing as self also. Does that mean you don't exist just as God doesn't exist? Who or what is reading this if you don't exist?


There is a Hindi/Pali word Aatma, which is used for both, self and soul. The Buddha denied any soul independent from body. It is what the above quote says.

False, the word atma does not refer to body, it refers exclusively to the soul. ‘Self’ in this context does not mean body, the Hindi term ‘Self‘refers exclusively to the soul.

nam_siddharth wrote:
There is a indian theory, which says that Aatma(self or soul) is a part of Paramatma (God or creator).

I have posted the same concept earlier this evening in this thread. Every soul is an integral part of God. Hinduism is hardly unique in this assertion.

I wrote:
If Buddha claimed there is no such thing as God, why is he discussing God with Brahmans?


nam_siddharth wrote:
Buddha is known to teach a person with one's own believes. Buddha's mission was to teach Dhamma, not to teach atheism. So he teaches theistic people in his own language. But if anytime the question arises, whether God exist or not, He denied the existance of God.

No, he remained silent to discourage speculation, other than in the one 13th century story that you quoted from. He also remained silent when asked if the universe was infinite, even though this is obviously true.


nam_siddharth wrote:
The following verses will help you to understand His way.


Quote:
Meanwhile the Buddha dressed himself in the early morning, took his bowl and robe and went in to Rajagaha on alms round. On the way, he saw Sigalaka worshipping the six directions. Seeing this, the Buddha said to him: "Young man, why have you risen in the early morning and set out from Rajagaha to worship in such a way?”

You seem to suggest that the Buddha’s question implies doubt in the validity of the practice when that is not at all obvious. It looks to me like the Buddha detects a grave distress in the young man and is simply asking him, ‘what is so troubling you’?

Quote:
"But, young man, that is not how the six directions should be worshipped according to the discipline of the noble ones."

"Then how, dear sir, should the six directions be worshipped according to the discipline of the noble ones? I would appreciate it if you would teach me the proper way this should be done."

"Very well, young man, listen and pay careful attention while I tell you."
.
.
.
27. "And how, young man, does the noble disciple protect the six directions? These six directions should be known: mother and father as the east, teachers as the south, spouse and family as the west, friends and colleagues as the north, workers and servants as the lower direction, and ascetics and monks as the upper direction.

So if there is no validity to the practice how is the Buddha’s alteration of the young man’s ceremony of any help to him or anyone else reading about this encounter? Why record it for posterity?

nam_siddharth wrote:
Will you suggest that Buddha was teaching to worship directions now?

God is the all encompassing Infinite in every direction. God is an all encompassing personality, mother, father, son, daughter, monk, servant, king, friend, etc… All healthy functional states of human consciousness are subsets of the cosmic consciousness. You’ll have to explain what you think this means, because in the absence of any suggestion I see no alternative possible meaning. My hypothesis is that you have excluded the seemingly obvious meaning here because it is incompatible with your personal point of view as an atheist.

If my take on this is false, then what on Earth was the Buddha doing? What is the point of exchanging one supposedly meaningless empty ritual for another? Your assertion doesn’t make any sense to me. If what you are saying is true then the whole incident is meaningless and the Buddha’s words mean absolutely nothing.

You assert no positive meaning to the Buddha’s actions here, you only provide a negative, saying what you think it is not, contentedly leaving a vacuum of meaning in it’s place. That is not good enough to be convincing, you need to show what the Buddha’s point was in order to make a convincing argument that the Buddha was invalidating the directional practice. You can’t simply negate the face value meaning and leave nothing in it’s place, if there is no other alternative then the face value meaning is all that is left. At face value it appears that the Buddha is refining a perfectly valid form of meditation on the cosmic consciousness.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:

No, he remained silent to discourage speculation, other than in the one 13th century story that you quoted from. He also remained silent when asked if the universe was infinite, even though this is obviously true.


Tripitika was not written in 13th century.

mike1reynolds wrote:
You assert no positive meaning to the Buddha’s actions here, you only provide a negative, saying what you think it is not, contentedly leaving a vacuum of meaning in it’s place.


Where you see empty place in above story. The person got an alternative in the above case.

You say, he remained silence to discourage speculation, then why the hell you are spreading speculation in his name?
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
What the hell wrong with you? Do you know where is Jataka stories, it is in Suttapitaka.

I would request that you please be more cordial. I only get combative when people are playing head games such that the argument goes around in circles and is totally unproductive and neither side learns anything. Though I disagree with your point of view, this conversation seems very productive to me. I don't know if you are learning anything, but I am and I thank you for a productive debate.

As I said before, I know nothing about Theravadan scriptures because I was always repulsed by the lack of mystical insight by it's authorities. What was repulsing me was apparently the fact that it is a tradition that died out centuries ago and the practitioners today are merely scholars, not Eastern mystics. While I am unimpressed with the interpretations and commentaries of modern Theradavan scholarship, I am finding the texts themselves fascinating. I could never get past the materialistic interpretations in order to get to the texts before, but this debate is prompting me and I am finding it very rewarding. So once again, thank you.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:

No, he remained silent to discourage speculation, other than in the one 13th century story that you quoted from. He also remained silent when asked if the universe was infinite, even though this is obviously true.


Tripitika was not written in 13th century.

I didn't suggest it was. If you'll look at the web page I provided, it appears to provide various late dates for the origin of each different Jataka. I am not clear on what exactly it is saying, possibly it is saying something else entirely, but unless you provide an explanation, I am left with the impression that all of the Jatakas were written and incorporated into the Tripitika at a much later date.

mike1reynolds wrote:
You assert no positive meaning to the Buddha’s actions here, you only provide a negative, saying what you think it is not, contentedly leaving a vacuum of meaning in it’s place.


nam_siddharth wrote:
Where you see empty place in above story. The person got an alternative in the above case.

I don't see an empty place in the story, I see an empty place in your interpretation and explanation. Please reread my statement. I'm not saying there is no explanation, I'm saying that you provided none. I did. An explanation is more plausible than no explanation. Please provide an explanation so that a discussion is possible and interpretations can be compared and debated.
mike1reynolds
So what happened? Did I finally score a point in the debate, or did you just give up in disgust?
nam_siddharth
Quote:
Buddhism (Pāli Buddhadhamma or Sanskrit Buddhadharma) is an atheistic religion and philosophy based on the teachings of the Buddha, Siddhārtha Gautama, who lived in the 5th century BCE. Buddhism spread throughout the ancient Indian sub-continent in the five centuries following his death, and propagated into Central, Southeast, and East Asia over the next two millennia. Today, Buddhism is divided primarily into three traditions, Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. Buddhism continues to attract followers worldwide, and, with around 376 million followers, it is considered a major world religion.

A Buddha is considered to be a person who discovered the true nature of reality through years of study, investigation of the various religious practices of his time, and meditation. This discovery is called enlightenment. This name applies to any person who has become awakened to the principles of Buddhism, or enlightened. Gautama Siddhartha was only one of many persons who could be called buddhas. According to the Buddha, any person can follow his example and become enlightened through the study of his words, and by leading a virtuous, moral life. In general, the aim of Buddhist practice is to end all kinds of suffering in life. To achieve this state, adherents seek to purify and train the mind by following the Noble Eightfold Path, and eventually to gain true knowledge of reality and thus attain liberation (Nirvana).


source:- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhism
mike1reynolds
The debate is over whether or not modern Theravada, revived by western scholars and not traditional practitioners, is an accurate reflection of the Buddha's teachings. I don't believe that Theravada was atheistic before it was destroyed by Westerners in the 16th and 17th century.

I asked you the same question twice and you haven't answered. Why did the Buddha modifying the 6 directions practice if it is a meaningless practice? What point did he convey? How was this an improvement? Did he slip something more relevant in? According to your point of view the Buddha's 6 direction advice was as meaningless as the young man's original form of the practice, so what was the point of modifying it?
nam_siddharth
Buddha modified his meaningless practice of worshiping directions to useful way to spend life.

Theravada was always alive in Burma, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and other west asian countries. As far about Sri Lanks, Theravada was present there since time of Ashoka, or earlier. The link of traditional Buddhism was lost for only one or two centuries, during British rule.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
Buddha modified his meaningless practice of worshiping directions to useful way to spend life.

How was it useful?
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
Buddha modified his meaningless practice of worshiping directions to useful way to spend life.

How was it useful?


It will better, if you read full story by clicking the link. You will find yourself, how was it useful. Buddha has described it for you.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/digha/dn-31-ksy0.html
mike1reynolds
To guard thy home by mysterious ceremonies is not sufficient; thou must guard it with good deeds.

From this quote it would seem to me that the Buddha is explicitly rejecting the efficacy of the young man’s directional ceremony at the outset. In contrast, I see no such admonition in the Two Brahmans sutta. The Buddha never suggests that the path to Brahma is insufficient.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
To guard thy home by mysterious ceremonies is not sufficient; thou must guard it with good deeds.

From this quote it would seem to me that the Buddha is explicitly rejecting the efficacy of the young man’s directional ceremony at the outset. In contrast, I see no such admonition in the Two Brahmans sutta. The Buddha never suggests that the path to Brahma is insufficient.



What does the word Brahma mean?

There are two words in Pali/Sanskrit, Brahma and Brahm. But in English, both are written as Brahma. Brahma is a term used for creater of world, and Brahm is term, used for ultimate truth.
nam_siddharth
Now see, what was Buddha's way of teaching people:-

Quote:
[1] In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial (or: not connected with the goal), unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[2] In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[3] In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, but unendearing & disagreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them.

[4] In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[5] In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[6] In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, and endearing & agreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them. Why is that? Because the Tathagata has sympathy for living beings."


Source: Abhaya Sutta, Deegh Nikaya, Tipitika.

note:- Tathagata is another term used for Buddha.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
Now see, what was Buddha's way of teaching people:-

Quote:
In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial (or: not connected with the goal), unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

This contradicts your thesis, since the Buddha says that he knows the way to Brahma.
Two Brahmans Sutta wrote:
"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
mike1reynolds wrote:
To guard thy home by mysterious ceremonies is not sufficient; thou must guard it with good deeds.

From this quote it would seem to me that the Buddha is explicitly rejecting the efficacy of the young man’s directional ceremony at the outset. In contrast, I see no such admonition in the Two Brahmans sutta. The Buddha never suggests that the path to Brahma is insufficient.



What does the word Brahma mean?

There are two words in Pali/Sanskrit, Brahma and Brahm. But in English, both are written as Brahma. Brahma is a term used for creater of world, and Brahm is term, used for ultimate truth.

Yes I know, the creator of the world is God/Brahma. And the Buddha says that he is the only path to Brahma. He states that no Brahman has seen God, but the Buddha says the he has seen God face to face. The Two Brahmans Sutta is an exact parallel to Jesus' statement, "I am the only doorway".
mike1reynolds
Something else that just occured to me, Voltaire made exactly the same kinds of arguments that the Buddha supposedly made in the Jakatas that you quote from and yet he avidly denied being an atheist. He was a deist instead of a theist, a subtle distinction, which is why he made those arguments.

(Who knows if the the Buddha really made this arguments thought since the Jakata you quoted from was written in the 13th century.)
nam_siddharth
Quote:
"Then you assert, Vasettha, that one of the Brahmans, nor their teachers, nor their teachers pupils, nor their ancestors back for seven generations, has ever seen Brahma face to face. And that even the Rishis of old, the authors and utterers of the ancient form of words which the Brahmans of today so carefully intone and recite precisely as they have been handed down, that even they did not pretend to know or to have seen where or whence or whither Brahma is. And yet, Vasettha, these Brahmans pretend that they can show the path to union with that which they have not seen, and which they know not, saying: this is the straight path, this is the direct way, which leads him, who acts according to it, into a state of union with Brahma. Now what think you, Vasettha, does it not follow that this being so, that the talk of these Brahmans, versed though they be in the three Vedas, is foolish talk."

"Yes, Gotama, this being so, it follows that the talk of these Brahmans, versed in the three Vedas is foolish talk."

"Vasettha, it is like a string of blind men clinging to one another, the foremost cannot see the way, neither can the middle one, nor the hindmost. Even so, methinks, Vasettha that the talk of the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas is but blind talk. The first sees not, the middle sees not, the hindmost sees not. The talk, then, of these Brahmans turns out to be ridicules, mere words, vain and empty.


Theory of Brahma was given by Vedas, and Buddha denies the validity of Vedas, as it is clear from above quote. So, how Buddha can teach the way of something, which He himself proved wrong?

The union with Brahma was not subject of Buddha, but was subject of Brahmans. Buddha was not telling, that union with Brahma is neccessory, but Brahmans were. And Buddha changed the meaning on "Union with Brahma" to Nirvana.

But it does not mean that "Nirvana" is "Union with Brahma".

If you read the complete tevigga sutta carefully, then you will find, in which sense He was claiming that He knows the path to "Union with Brahma".

Quote:
"Now, Vasettha, when you have been among Brahmans, listening as they talked among themselves, learners and teachers and those aged and well stricken in years, what have you learned from them and of them? Is Brahma in possession of wives and wealth, or is he not?"

"He is not, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of anger, or is it free from anger?"

"Free from anger, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of malice of free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Is his mind depraved, or pure?"

"It is pure, Gotama."

"Has he self mastery, or has he not?"

"He has, Gotama."

"Now, what think you, Vasettha? Are the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas, are they in possession of wives and wealth, or are they not?"

"They are, Gotama."

"Had they anger in their hearts?"

"They have, Gotama."

"Do they bear malice, or do they not?"

"They do, Gotama."

"Are they pure in heart or are they not?"

"They are not, Gotama."

"Then you say, Vasettha, that the Brahmans are in possession of wives and wealth, and that Brahma is not. Can there be agreement and likeness between the Brahmans with their wives and property and Brahma who has none of these things?"

"Certainly not, Gotama."


Quote:
"Now, what do you think, Vasettha, will the Bhikkhu who lives thus be in possession of women and wealth, or will he not?"
"He will not, Gotama."

"Will he be full of anger, or will he be free from anger?"

"He will be free from anger, Gotama."

"Will his mind be full of malice, or free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Will his mind be lustful or pure?"

"It will be pure, Gotama."

"Will he have self mastery, or will he not?"

"Surely he will, Gotama."

Vasettha, you say that the Bhikkhu is free from household cares and that Brahma is free from household cares. Is there then agreement and likeness between the Bhikkhu and Brahma?"

"There is, Gotama."


Buddha is saying, that the idea of Brahma has similarity with the way of life of "Bhikkus"(Buddhist monks). In this way, way of bhikkus is way to "Union with Brahma".

Remember, the idea of brahma is comming from Brahmans, not from Buddha.
mike1reynolds
It is extremely late in this part of the world, so I'll have to read your quotes more carefully tomorrow. For now I have two points.

(1) Disproof of Brahmanic insight does not automatically mean that everytihng they think is wrong. Just because fools believe in something doesn't make it false. All fools believe in the sun for example.

(2) Your previous quote says that the Buddha never says anything untrue, yet now you asserting that the Buddha is lying when he says that he is the path to Brahma.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
It is extremely late in this part of the world, so I'll have to read your quotes more carefully tomorrow. For now I have two points.

(1) Disproof of Brahmanic insight does not automatically mean that everytihng they think is wrong. Just because fools believe in something doesn't make it false. All fools believe in the sun for example.

(2) Your previous quote says that the Buddha never says anything untrue, yet now you asserting that the Buddha is lying when he says that he is the path to Brahma.


He is not saying that it is Path to Brahma. I recommend you to read by above post carefully before replying.
mike1reynolds
Oh yes, also, the concept of Brahma appears most importantly in the Upanishads, not the Vedas. While it appears in the Vedas, the Vedas are EXTREMELY primitive compared to the Upanishads. The Vedas do not contain sophisticated philosophical insights, it is mostly rituals and songs. It is the Upanishads that contain the truly profound insights of Vedic culture.

It is the Upanishads that contain the philosophical underpinnings for belief in Brahma, not the Vedas. If the Buddha were to criticize the Upanishads, then I would automatically accept that he was denying the foundation of belief in Brahma. By attacking the Vedas instead he is only attacking Vedic rituals, not the core philosophical underpinnings for belief in Brahma.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
Oh yes, also, the concept of Brahma appears most importantly in the Upanishads, not the Vedas. While it appears in the Vedas, the Vedas are EXTREMELY primitive compared to the Upanishads. The Vedas do not contain sophisticated philosophical insights, it is mostly rituals and songs. It is the Upanishads that contain the truly profound insights of Vedic culture.

It is the Upanishads that contain the philosophical underpinnings for belief in Brahma, not the Vedas. If the Buddha were to criticize the Upanishads, then I would automatically accept that he was denying the foundation of belief in Brahma. By attacking the Vedas instead he is only attacking Vedic rituals, not the core philosophical underpinnings for belief in Brahma.


May be. But Upnishadas were written long after Buddha.

At the time of Buddha, only three Vedas were written. Even a Veda was written after death of Buddha. Buddha has always considered only three Vedas. Upnishadas were written to describe Vedas. But the original concept is provided by Vedas.
mike1reynolds
I wasn't looking at your quotes, as I stated in the post.

Are you saying that the fallowing translation is in error?
Two Brahmans Sutta wrote:
"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."

Not speaking Pali I could hardly say, but you never suggested in your reply that the above quote is inacurate. He clearly states that he is the path to union with Brahma, but you assert that this is a lie.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
May be. But Upnishadas were written long after Buddha.

At the time of Buddha, only three Vedas were written. Even a Veda was written after death of Buddha. Buddha has always considered only three Vedas.

This is false, the Upanishads predate the Mahabharata, which predates the Buddha.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
May be. But Upnishadas were written long after Buddha.

At the time of Buddha, only three Vedas were written. Even a Veda was written after death of Buddha. Buddha has always considered only three Vedas.

This is false, the Upanishads predate the Mahabharata, which predates the Buddha.


Mahabharata predates Buddha? funny.

Mahabharata is written in Classical Sanskrit. The script of classical Sanskrit is "Nagari". Nagari script is a new script in compare of "Brahmi" script, the script of original pali. Nagari srcipt was not available at the time of Buddha.
mike1reynolds
The forward of every Upanishad I own says that it predates the Mahabharata. The latest date given been scholars is 500 years prior to the Buddha.

The Date of the Mahabharata

Let’s consider the epoch for the Mahabharata War. By popular tradition, the Kali Age started with the death of Krishna, 35 years after the War. The Kali calendar has a beginning of 3102 BC, therefore it is thought that the Mahabharata War took place in 3137 BC. The Kali age is supposed to have begun with a grand planetary conjunction.

The first mention of the Kali calendar is by the astronomer Aryabhata in his treatise on astronomy with an internal date of 500 AD. The earliest epigraphical reference is in the 5th century inscription of King Devasena where it is alluded to indirectly, and in the Aihole inscription of 3735 Kali (634 AD). Because of these late references, some
scholars have suggested that the Kali calendar was started at a late period with an assumed conjunction at the beginning of the era for convenience of calculations, and, therefore, the Aihole inscription cannot be taken as proof of the date of the War.

Modern studies using powerful software that can reconstruct the ancient skies indicates that there was actually an approximate conjunction of the planets on Feb 17, 3102 BC as taken by Aryabhata. This may only be a coincidence. Even if the Kali calendar is as old as its starting date, its connections with the Mahabharata War do not appear to be equally
ancient. There are also other traditions related to the War. Some of them are old, some new. The most prominent competing theories may be gathered into the following four classes:

1. The date of around 1000 BC. This is the date popularized by Western Indologists as being most “reasonable” based on archaeological data. Repeated in numerous school texts, it has achieved a certain kind of canonicity. This date was first proposed within the framework of the Aryan invasion theory. Although that theory has been discredited, this date has taken independent life of its own.

2. The date of 1924 BC. Based on Puranic genealogies that see a gap of 1000 years or so between the War and the rule of the Nandas (424 BC) we get the date of 1424 BC. But Pargiter, while editing these accounts from the various Puranas, suggested that the original number was 1,500 which was wrongly copied in various texts as 1000, 1015, or 1050. I accept the arguments of Pargiter and, therefore, consider the Puranic tradition to support the date of 1924 BC. Furthermore, the date of 1424 BC sits in the middle of an obscure period, and it is hard to see how the events of that age would not have left markers in the
archaeological record.
3. The date of 2449 BC. This is based on a statement by Varahamihira in 505 AD in chapter 13 of the Brihat Samhita, where it is claimed that the commencement of the Saka era took place 2,526 years after the rule of the king Yudhisthira. If the Saka era meant here is the Salivahana era (78 AD), then the date follows. Some scholars have suggested that this Saka era refers to the one started by an earlier Saka king in Central Asia and that this date is not at variance with the Kali date of Aryabhata.
4. The date of 3137 BC. The traditional value, mentioned by Aryabhata and in the Aihole inscription of 634 AD.
nam_siddharth
That website later says:-

Quote:
The astronomical references in the Vedic texts reach back to the 4th and 5th millennia BC


Only fools will believe it.


It does not mean that I am saying you fool. Embarassed

If it is your way to prove anything, then I give up.

In whole of Tipitika there is no refference for Mahabharata and Upnishada. But In Mahabahrata and Upnishada, you can find many refference to Buddha. In Tipitika, there is refference of only Three Vedas. But Currently, there are four Vedas. It is said, that Buddha has studied all the three Vedas.

The link you have provided also says that Purans and Smritis were also written far earlier. But you cannot deny the fact that all the Puaran, Smriti and The Mahabharata is written in Classical Sanskrit. Classical sanskrit is very new language in comparision to Vedic Sanskrit and Pali. Nagari Script is used to write classical sanskrit. Nagari script was not used even in time of Ashoka.
mike1reynolds
I am a lot more familiar with the with the Upanishads and Mahabharata than the Tripitaka, and I'm not familiar with any reference to the Buddha. I would have to see a reference to be convinced of this. I've studied them for 20 years, so it would turn my impression of Vedic culture upside down (or at least my timeline). Could you provide one please? It would be quite a shock to me, but I love to learn new things.

I agree that only fools believe in the 5000 year old date, or the 100,000 year old date for the Rg Veda. But that isn't the point, the point is that the latest date that any scholar gives for the Mahabharata is 1000 BC, five centuries before the Buddha. I find it inconcievable that even the most conservative western scholars could be so far off if there was such obvious evidence in script type and canonical references. Western scholars typically underestimate ages, like Egyptologists claiming the Sphinx is only 5000 years old when geologists unanimously agree that it must be at least 10,000 years old.

It is dawn, I've GOT to go to sleep. Talk to you tomorrow.
mike1reynolds
I can't sleep because I feel the urge to reemphasize the right portions of my quote above:
Quote:

1. The date of around 1000 BC. This is the date popularized by Western Indologists as being most “reasonable” based on archaeological data. Repeated in numerous school texts, it has achieved a certain kind of canonicity. This date was first proposed within the framework of the Aryan invasion theory. Although that theory has been discredited, this date has taken independent life of its own.

2. The date of 1924 BC. Based on Puranic genealogies that see a gap of 1000 years or so between the War and the rule of the Nandas (424 BC) we get the date of 1424 BC. But Pargiter, while editing these accounts from the various Puranas, suggested that the original number was 1,500 which was wrongly copied in various texts as 1000, 1015, or 1050. I accept the arguments of Pargiter and, therefore, consider the Puranic tradition to support the date of 1924 BC. Furthermore, the date of 1424 BC sits in the middle of an obscure period, and it is hard to see how the events of that age would not have left markers in the archaeological record.

Even many western scholar, such as this LSU professor, discount the 1000 BC date as being much to late to be reasonable.
mike1reynolds
Ugh, still can't sleep. One last note for this morning:

The Puranas reference the Mahabharata, Ramayana, and Vedas, but not the Sutras, The Mahabharata references the Ramayana and the Vedas but not the Sutras and Puranas. The Ramayana references the Vedas but not the Mahabharata, Puranas or Sutras. So the sequence has to be Vedas, Ramayana, Mahabharata, Puranas and lastely the Sutras.

The Upanishads are generally considered to be an adjunect to the Vedas.

Hindus consider the Buddha to have been the most recent Avatar, unless you accept Sri Ramakrishna as an Avatar.
nam_siddharth
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puranic
Quote:
The Puranas (Sanskrit पुराण, purāṇá "ancient", since they focus on ancient history of the universe) are part of Hindu Smriti; these religious scriptures discuss varied topics like devotion to God in his various aspects, traditional sciences like Ayurveda, Jyotish, cosmology, concepts like dharma, karma, reincarnation and many others.

Sage Vyasa is credited with compilation of Puranas from age Yuga to age, and for the current age, he has been identified and named Krishna Dvaipayana, the son of sage Parashara. According to tradition they were written by Vyasa at the end of Dvapara Yuga, while modern scholarship dates them to the latter half of the first millennium AD.


It apears to me, that all of your arguments are based on faith, not on the facts.

Any Book, written in "Classical Sanskrit" or "Nagari script" cannot be older than Tipitika.

Puranas were written after 500 AD.
mike1reynolds
Britannica wrote:
The name Upanishad implies sitting at the feet of the teacher, and the Upanishads, of which approximately 108 are known, record the views of a succession of Hindu teachers and sages who were active as early as 1000 BC and who flourished about 600 BC.
http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9074382

So the Encyclopedia Britannica is a work of religious faith and not scholarship?

Wikipedia wrote:
A significant form of post-Vedic but pre-Paninian Sanskrit is found in the Sanskrit of the Hindu Epics, the Ramayana and Mahabharata. The deviations from Panini in the epics are generally due to interference from Prakirts [see Brockington, "The Sanskrit Epics"]. Traditional Sanskrit scholars call such deviations aarsha or "of the rishis", the traditional title for the ancient authors. In some contexts there are also more "prakritisms" (borrowings from common speech) than Classical Sanskrit proper. Finally, there is also a language dubbed "Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit" by scholars, which is actually a prakrit ornamented with Sanskritized elements, perhaps for purposes of ostentation (see also termination of spoken Sanskrit)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanskrit#Classical_Sanskrit

Quote:
Another form of Sanskrit that developed in the same period has been titled Epic Sanskrit and is evident in the language employed in the Mahabharata and other prominent Hindu epics. Epic Sanskrit employs a higher number of "prakritisms" (borrowed words from common speech) than from the more refined form of Classical Sanskrit. Another form of the language discovered by linguistic scholars is called "Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit". Essentially a Prakrit language form, the language is replete with Sanskritized elements, which are assumed to have been used for the purposes of ornamentation of the language.
http://www.bhashaindia.com/Patrons/LanguageTech/Sanskrit.aspx

The Mahabharata was written in "Epic" sanskrit, it has been translated into nagari script, but that was not it's origional form. Not being a sanskrit scholar, I don't know what the Hindi name is for "Epic" sanskrit, but the above quotes makes it clear that it is not written in the much more recent nagari script.

Quote:
The first possible recorded instance of a Krishna who may be identified with the deity can be found in the Chandogya Upanishad (circa 900 BCE). The teacher Ghora Angirasa discusses the nature of soul with Krishna, the son of Devaki. However, this teacher is never mentioned in connection with Krishna in later works nor does any ancient or medieval author quote this instance of Krishna, the deity. The exact words that Ghora speaks are treated by some as praise of Krishna and most others as a praise of the Atman, whose knowledge being imparted to Krishna. The doctrine taught by Ghora matches with the Bhagavad gita and the name of the mother is same as in later Krishna traditions.

Panini, circa 5th century BCE, in his Ashtadhyayi explains the word "Vāsudevaka" as a Bhakta (devotee) of Vāsudeva. This, along with the mention of Arjuna in the same context, indicates that the Vāsudeva here is Krishna.

In the 4th century BCE, Megasthenes the Greek ambassador to the court of Chandragupta Maurya says that the Sourasenoi (Surasenas), who lived in the region of Mathura worshipped Herakles. This Herakles is usually identified with Krishna due to the regions mentioned by Megasthenes as well as similarities between some of the herioc acts of the two. Megasthenes also mentions that his daughter Pandaia to have ruled in south India. The south indeed had the kingdom of the Pandyas with the capital at Madhura (Madurai), the name similar to if not same as Krishna's Mathura.
http://www.answers.com/topic/krishna

Perhaps you could provide some evidence to support your assertion, rather than simply stating that your opinion is fact.
nam_siddharth
It will better, if you read the quotes provided by yourself.:

1. You say Upnishadas are older than Mahabharata.

2. Later, you say, Mahabharata was written in 2000 BC.

3. You say, Upnishadas were written in 1000 BC to 500 BC.

4. You say, 1st reference of deity Krishna (Hero of Mahabharata) was in 900 BC.

5. You say, Purana (dated 500 AD or later) was written before Buddha (550 BC).

Please reconsider these all.


Some more contrary points from you:-

1. You say, Buddha has accepted vedic Brahma has creator.

2. Later you say, Buddha has declied theory of Brahma of Vedas, but not Upnishada.

3. You later say, that Upnishadas were written to describe Veda. Thus Veda is original source for theory of Brahma.

Please tell me, what you want to prove this way.

Now listen:-

1. This thread is on Buddhism.

2. Buddha has mentioned vedas, on few occations.

3. So, we can extend our discussion upto Vedas.

3. Buddha has never mentioned Upnishadas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Purana and Smritis.

4. So, it is useless to include Upnishadas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Purana and Smritis in our discussion.

5. If you want to discuss on Upnishadas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Purana or Smritis, feel free to participate on other topics related on these.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
It will better, if you read the quotes provided by yourself.:

1. You say Upnishadas are older than Mahabharata.

2. Later, you say, Mahabharata was written in 2000 BC.

Granted I’ve failed to support the first assertion with the evidence I’ve provided, but it is irrelevant to the fact that the Upanishads predate the Buddha, which is the only point that is really relevant here.

nam_siddharth wrote:
3. You say, Upnishadas were written in 1000 BC to 500 BC.

That is what the Encyclopedia Britannica said. Though I think that this is an excessively early date range, even conservative estimates contradict your assertion.

nam_siddharth wrote:
4. You say, 1st reference of deity Krishna (Hero of Mahabharata) was in 900 BC.

5. You say, Purana (dated 500 AD or later) was written before Buddha (550 BC).

I already conceded that point, admitting that I’ve never read the Puranas, only discussed them with rishis at Krishna temples.

nam_siddharth wrote:
Please reconsider these all.

So clearly the Upanishads predate the Buddha and the Buddha’s criticisms of the Vedas don’t mean that he is asserting that Brahma doesn’t exist. Especially since he says the he is the only path to Brahma. If Brahma doesn’t exist then this is a false statement, and by your quote, the Buddha does not make false statements.


nam_siddharth wrote:
Some more contrary points from you:-

1. You say, Buddha has accepted vedic Brahma has creator.

2. Later you say, Buddha has declied theory of Brahma of Vedas, but not Upnishada.

3. You later say, that Upnishadas were written to describe Veda. Thus Veda is original source for theory of Brahma.

An adjunct is not a description, it is an accompaniment. The Vedas are rituals for the masses while the Upanishads are much more profound theological insights for yogis.

nam_siddharth wrote:
Please tell me, what you want to prove this way.

Now listen:-

1. This thread is on Buddhism.

2. Buddha has mentioned vedas, on few occations.

3. So, we can extend our discussion upto Vedas.

3. Buddha has never mentioned Upnishadas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Purana and Smritis.

4. So, it is useless to include Upnishadas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Purana and Smritis in our discussion.

5. If you want to discuss on Upnishadas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Purana or Smritis, feel free to participate on other topics related on these.

You admit that the Upanishads are the core teachings about Brahma, yet claim that the Buddha’s criticisms of the Vedas supposedly prove that the Buddha denies the existence of Brahma.

Tell me this, how can the Buddha be the only path to union with something nonexistent? That is a meaningless statement.
nam_siddharth
nam_siddharth wrote:
Quote:
"Then you assert, Vasettha, that one of the Brahmans, nor their teachers, nor their teachers pupils, nor their ancestors back for seven generations, has ever seen Brahma face to face. And that even the Rishis of old, the authors and utterers of the ancient form of words which the Brahmans of today so carefully intone and recite precisely as they have been handed down, that even they did not pretend to know or to have seen where or whence or whither Brahma is. And yet, Vasettha, these Brahmans pretend that they can show the path to union with that which they have not seen, and which they know not, saying: this is the straight path, this is the direct way, which leads him, who acts according to it, into a state of union with Brahma. Now what think you, Vasettha, does it not follow that this being so, that the talk of these Brahmans, versed though they be in the three Vedas, is foolish talk."

"Yes, Gotama, this being so, it follows that the talk of these Brahmans, versed in the three Vedas is foolish talk."

"Vasettha, it is like a string of blind men clinging to one another, the foremost cannot see the way, neither can the middle one, nor the hindmost. Even so, methinks, Vasettha that the talk of the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas is but blind talk. The first sees not, the middle sees not, the hindmost sees not. The talk, then, of these Brahmans turns out to be ridicules, mere words, vain and empty.


Theory of Brahma was given by Vedas, and Buddha denies the validity of Vedas, as it is clear from above quote. So, how Buddha can teach the way of something, which He himself proved wrong?

The union with Brahma was not subject of Buddha, but was subject of Brahmans. Buddha was not telling, that union with Brahma is neccessory, but Brahmans were. And Buddha changed the meaning on "Union with Brahma" to Nirvana.

But it does not mean that "Nirvana" is "Union with Brahma".

If you read the complete tevigga sutta carefully, then you will find, in which sense He was claiming that He knows the path to "Union with Brahma".

Quote:
"Now, Vasettha, when you have been among Brahmans, listening as they talked among themselves, learners and teachers and those aged and well stricken in years, what have you learned from them and of them? Is Brahma in possession of wives and wealth, or is he not?"

"He is not, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of anger, or is it free from anger?"

"Free from anger, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of malice of free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Is his mind depraved, or pure?"

"It is pure, Gotama."

"Has he self mastery, or has he not?"

"He has, Gotama."

"Now, what think you, Vasettha? Are the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas, are they in possession of wives and wealth, or are they not?"

"They are, Gotama."

"Had they anger in their hearts?"

"They have, Gotama."

"Do they bear malice, or do they not?"

"They do, Gotama."

"Are they pure in heart or are they not?"

"They are not, Gotama."

"Then you say, Vasettha, that the Brahmans are in possession of wives and wealth, and that Brahma is not. Can there be agreement and likeness between the Brahmans with their wives and property and Brahma who has none of these things?"

"Certainly not, Gotama."


Quote:
"Now, what do you think, Vasettha, will the Bhikkhu who lives thus be in possession of women and wealth, or will he not?"
"He will not, Gotama."

"Will he be full of anger, or will he be free from anger?"

"He will be free from anger, Gotama."

"Will his mind be full of malice, or free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Will his mind be lustful or pure?"

"It will be pure, Gotama."

"Will he have self mastery, or will he not?"

"Surely he will, Gotama."

Vasettha, you say that the Bhikkhu is free from household cares and that Brahma is free from household cares. Is there then agreement and likeness between the Bhikkhu and Brahma?"

"There is, Gotama."


Buddha is saying, that the idea of Brahma has similarity with the way of life of "Bhikkus"(Buddhist monks). In this way, way of bhikkus is way to "Union with Brahma".

Remember, the idea of brahma is comming from Brahmans, not from Buddha.


I quoted my own statments again, because you asked the same question I have already answered. Why you not consider to read my full answer before making a question?

Upnishadas has accepted the validity of Veda. No Upnishada dares to say that Vedas can be wrong.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
Buddha is saying, that the idea of Brahma has similarity with the way of life of "Bhikkus"(Buddhist monks). In this way, way of bhikkus is way to "Union with Brahma".

How it is the way of bhikkus similar to union with something nonexistent?

nam_siddharth wrote:
Remember, the idea of brahma is comming from Brahmans, not from Buddha.

I have already provided a counter argument to this that you have failed to address. At the beginning of the sutta about the directional practice the Buddha says, “To guard thy home by mysterious ceremonies is not sufficient”. He criticizes the practice directly as ineffectual. Nowhere in the Two Brahmas Sutta does the Buddha say that union with Brahma is ineffectual. He criticizes the Brahmins and the Vedas, not union with Brahma or the Upanishads. Do you fail to see the distinction?

nam_siddharth wrote:
I quoted my own statments again, because you asked the same question I have already answered. Why you not consider to read my full answer before making a question?

No, you have never addressed my question here, though I have repeated it half a dozen times now. The Buddha treats the two practices completely differently, he invalidates the directional practice. He tells the truth about it.

He does not invalidate the path to union with Brahma. The Buddha invalidates the Vedas (which is not the core teachings on union with Brahma) and he invalidates Brahmins, but then puts himself forward as the one who can fulfill the promise of union with Brahma. If Brahma does not exist then this must be a lie. How could it not be a lie if Brahma does not exist?

Please address this issue without trying to wiggle out of it by some other means and leaving the question still unaddressed. Arguing about dates and falsely insisting that the validity of Brahma rests solely on the Vedas is not an answer to the question.

nam_siddharth wrote:
Upnishadas has accepted the validity of Veda. No Upnishada dares to say that Vedas can be wrong.

Have you read the Upanishads? I can’t remember a single reference to the Vedas in any Upanishad.
nam_siddharth
Buddha is saying, that the idea of Brahma has similarity with the way of life of "Bhikkus"(Buddhist monks). In this way, way of bhikkus is way to "Union with Brahma". here, union is used for similarity.

Quote:
Is there then agreement and likeness between the Bhikkhu and Brahma
mike1reynolds
So then you assert that the Buddha is lying about the nature of Brahma to these Brahmins?
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
So then you assert that the Buddha is lying about the nature of Brahma to these Brahmins?


Nature of Brahma is being described by the Brahmans, not by Buddha.

Buddha is not telling, whether Brahma exist or not. He is telling that, if Brahma is like what the Brahmans described, it must have similarity with Bhikkus.
mike1reynolds
Quote:
Brahmins: "Surely he will, Gotama!"
Buddha: "Then as you say, the bhikkhu is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself; and Brahma also is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself. Is there then agreement and likeness between the bhikkhu and Brahma?"
Brahmins: "There is, Gotama!"

All of the statements about Brahma are made by the Buddha, not the Brahmins. The Brahmins only answer in agreement, they do not make statements of their own about Brahma.
nam_siddharth
Quote:
Brahmins: "Surely he will, Gotama!"
Buddha: "Then as you say, the bhikkhu is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself; and Brahma also is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself. Is there then agreement and likeness between the bhikkhu and Brahma?"
Brahmins: "There is, Gotama!"


Buddha has given two options for all of his questions. Thus, what Brahmans answered are Brahmans' statements.

Quote:
"Now, Vasettha, when you have been among Brahmans, listening as they talked among themselves, learners and teachers and those aged and well stricken in years, what have you learned from them and of them? Is Brahma in possession of wives and wealth, or is he not?"

"He is not, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of anger, or is it free from anger?"

"Free from anger, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of malice of free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Is his mind depraved, or pure?"

"It is pure, Gotama."

"Has he self mastery, or has he not?"

"He has, Gotama."

"Now, what think you, Vasettha? Are the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas, are they in possession of wives and wealth, or are they not?"

"They are, Gotama."

"Had they anger in their hearts?"

"They have, Gotama."

"Do they bear malice, or do they not?"

"They do, Gotama."

"Are they pure in heart or are they not?"

"They are not, Gotama."

"Then you say, Vasettha, that the Brahmans are in possession of wives and wealth, and that Brahma is not. Can there be agreement and likeness between the Brahmans with their wives and property and Brahma who has none of these things?"

"Certainly not, Gotama."


It is called, beating one with one's own stick, what the Buddha did with them.
mike1reynolds
[quote="nam_siddharth"]
Quote:
Buddha: "Then as you say, the bhikkhu is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself; and Brahma also is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself."
Brahmins: "There is, Gotama!"

How is he proposing two options for Brahma here? There is only one option, he asserts that Brahma is free from world desire. He does not give another options and it is an assertion not a question.
nam_siddharth
Again for you:-

Quote:
"Now, Vasettha, when you have been among Brahmans, listening as they talked among themselves, learners and teachers and those aged and well stricken in years, what have you learned from them and of them? Is Brahma in possession of wives and wealth, or is he not?"

"He is not, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of anger, or is it free from anger?"

"Free from anger, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of malice of free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Is his mind depraved, or pure?"

"It is pure, Gotama."

"Has he self mastery, or has he not?"

"He has, Gotama."

"Now, what think you, Vasettha? Are the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas, are they in possession of wives and wealth, or are they not?"

"They are, Gotama."

"Had they anger in their hearts?"

"They have, Gotama."

"Do they bear malice, or do they not?"

"They do, Gotama."

"Are they pure in heart or are they not?"

"They are not, Gotama."

"Then you say, Vasettha, that the Brahmans are in possession of wives and wealth, and that Brahma is not. Can there be agreement and likeness between the Brahmans with their wives and property and Brahma who has none of these things?"

"Certainly not, Gotama."


Perhaps, you are suffering for a desease. So, you cannot concentrate on a whole statements but only on a part.
mike1reynolds
Quote:
Buddha: "Then as you say, the bhikkhu is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself; and Brahma also is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself."

How is he proposing two options for Brahma here? There is only one option, he asserts that Brahma is free from worldly desire. He does not give another options and it is an assertion not a question.

Perhaps instead of hurling insults, you can address the question? Or is your argument too weak too provide an answer to this simple question?
mike1reynolds
Here is a better example:

Quote:
"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."

This is clearly and unambiguously a singular statement by the Buddha, without two options, and without making a statement posed as a question.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
Quote:
Buddha: "Then as you say, the bhikkhu is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself; and Brahma also is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself."

How is he proposing two options for Brahma here? There is only one option, he asserts that Brahma is free from worldly desire. He does not give another options and it is an assertion not a question.

Perhaps instead of hurling insults, you can address the question? Or is your argument too weak too provide an answer to this simple question?


Again for you, perhaps you need bold letters.

Quote:
"Now, Vasettha, when you have been among Brahmans, listening as they talked among themselves, learners and teachers and those aged and well stricken in years, what have you learned from them and of them? Is Brahma in possession of wives and wealth, or is he not?"

"He is not, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of anger, or is it free from anger?"

"Free from anger, Gotama."

"Is his mind full of malice of free from malice?"

"Free from malice, Gotama."

"Is his mind depraved, or pure?"

"It is pure, Gotama."

"Has he self mastery, or has he not?"

"He has, Gotama."

"Now, what think you, Vasettha? Are the Brahmans versed in the three Vedas, are they in possession of wives and wealth, or are they not?"

"They are, Gotama."

"Had they anger in their hearts?"

"They have, Gotama."

"Do they bear malice, or do they not?"

"They do, Gotama."

"Are they pure in heart or are they not?"

"They are not, Gotama."

"Then you say, Vasettha, that the Brahmans are in possession of wives and wealth, and that Brahma is not. Can there be agreement and likeness between the Brahmans with their wives and property and Brahma who has none of these things?"

"Certainly not, Gotama."


Please read non-bold letters too.

These statements come before, the statement you quoted.
mike1reynolds
Quote:
"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."

Before, after, what difference does it make, this is still a clear and unambiguous statement, made without two options or posing a statement as a question.
nam_siddharth
Quote:
Buddha: "Then as you say, the bhikkhu is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself; and Brahma also is free from household and worldly cares, free from anger, free from malice, pure in mind, and master of himself. Is there then agreement and likeness between the bhikkhu and Brahma?"


Union with Brahma, in term of likeness.
mike1reynolds
Quote:
"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."

I do not see the word likeness here. You are mixing and matching the Buddha's verses at your convenience, but that is not what the Buddha said.

Either the Buddha is lying about being the path to union with Brahma because Brahma does not exist, or he is telling the truth and Brahma does exist.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
Quote:
"Thus," replied the Buddha, "the Tathagata knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been born in it. There can be no doubt in the Tathagata."

I do not se the word likeness here. You are mixing and matching the Buddha's verses at your convenience, but that is not what the Buddha said.

Either the Buddha is lying about being the path to union with Brahma because Brahma does not exist, or he is telling the truth and Brahma does exist.


All quotes, I am providing is from tevigga sutta, the same sutta, you are using for your argument. The statement of Buddha, you quoted is not indipendent. Why you want Buddha to say everything in one sentence.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
All quotes, I am providing is from tevigga sutta, the same sutta, you are using for your argument. The statement of Buddha, you quoted is not indipendent. Why you want Buddha to say everything in one sentence.

Because the statement is either true or false.
nam_siddharth
mike1reynolds wrote:
nam_siddharth wrote:
All quotes, I am providing is from tevigga sutta, the same sutta, you are using for your argument. The statement of Buddha, you quoted is not indipendent. Why you want Buddha to say everything in one sentence.

Because the statement is either true or false.


You cannot say any statement true or false, without knowing its exact meaning. And the meaning is provided by Buddha later on the same tevigga sutta.
mike1reynolds
nam_siddharth wrote:
You cannot say any statement true or false, without knowing its exact meaning. And the meaning is provided by Buddha later on the same tevigga sutta.

In which he says that they're the same thing, his path is one and the same as the path to union with Brahma. That is what agreement means.
nam_siddharth
The agreement is in sense of likeness of Brahma with Bhikkus. If Brahma exist, its nature is like Bhikkus, as mentioned by the Brahmans. So, if you live the life of Bhikkus, you will become like Brahma. It is what, Buddha is saying to Brahmans.

What is nature of the Brahma is mentioned by Brahmans.
mike1reynolds
The two paths are either in agreement or they are not. The Buddha did not preach the path to nonexistence.

Goodnight friend.
silliman
silvergaze wrote:
The ten recollections refer to ten reflective exercises that can be practiced to strengthen one's commitment to the Buddhist path.
The sixth of these is a recollection on deities.
The fifth of these is a recollection on generosity.
The fourth of these is a recollection on virtue.
The third of the ten recollections focuses on the Sangha, the community of Buddhist monks and nuns.
The second of the ten recollections is a recollection of the dhamma or dharma, the Buddha's teachings.
The first of these is a recollection on the Buddha himself.


Aloha Silvergaze,

Thank you for sharing the ten recollections to reflective exercises. Is this teaching from the school of Mahayana or Theravada tradition?

Also, it seems that there are 10 recollections, but you have only listed numbers 1 - 6. Do you happen to know what the 7 - 10th recollections are?

Lastly, in some instances these recollections are referred to as “meditations” (i.e., suggesting the recollections are contemplated during meditation rather than during daily waking activity), and in other instances they are referred to as “practices” (implying that the recollection is borne in mind throughout the day when we are engaged in activity).

Please share your thoughts on these points.

Thanks,

Mark
silliman
doomz wrote:
Quote:

Where can you find zero? Please tell me. @doomz


when you realize the final purpose of Buddhism, you will find it.

ok may ask you a question ^^, what is Buddha?


Aloha Doomz,

What "is" Buddha? is a good question and is a deeper question than "Who was Buddha -- which could be interpreted to be a historical query about facts, places, dates, events, etc. Who “is” Buddha? is a question using the stative verb or the verb to be, a state of being, if you will. I believe that Buddhism (and Buddha) has much to do with the quality of “being.”

It has been suggested that the way in which our “being” is refined, is through meditation that leads to self-realization or enlightenment.
silliman
Juparis wrote:
Sure, there's net articles and such, but you can't be too sure on how trustworthy they are, or if the information isn't a bit skewed or biased..

You meantioned, silliman, that Buddhism is more of a philosophy to you. With that in mind, would you think it possible to be a Christian and a Buddhist? I don't know enough about Buddhism to answer that myself;


Aloha Juparis,

I think you instinctively have chosen the Buddhistic “The Middle Way” of not believing or disbelieving the tons of web articles one can find on Buddhism. Though there are two major sects of Buddhism (Theravada and Mahayana), there are literally 100s if not 1,000s of minor sects. Who (or which one) do you believe?

My answer is not schooled or according to any doctrine; rather my own experience. I have been around and around the block with trying to find the “right” or “true” Christian sect/religion too. You and I will run out of life before we can thoroughly study them all to make an intelligent decision as to which one might be “more” correct. In the end, I have chosen to think of all religions a tool or a vehicle – a tool is designed to help you [NOT an end in itself], a vehicle helps to take you further down the road.

In short, if the tools or vehicle of Buddhism help to motivate and inspire you to higher realms of consciousness and purity, then that should be enough of an acid test as to its worth as teaching.

Generally speaking, Christianity is "exclusive" (that is, excludes the good teachings of other religions), whereas Buddhism is "inclusive" (that is, embracing the wholesomeness and virtue of all healthy, positive religious ideas).
silliman
mike1reynolds wrote:
AdamantMonk, you have some odd notions of Buddhism: no God, no Heaven? You imply that Buddhism is atheistic, but you do back flips to avoid using the term, fabricating a term instead -- "nontheistic", When Buddhists talk about the Great Void as a personality that knows your thoughts, who is this but God?


Aloha Mike,

Albert Einstein said, “If there is any religion that would cope with modern
scientific needs it would be Buddhism.”

In keeping with the spirit of openness and inclusiveness, Buddhism does not fall into the tar pit of describing the attributes of god (e.g., god is a old man with a white beard, god is a woman, god has this name, god has than name, god can do that, god is angry, passionate, dispassionate, vengeful, merciful, loves this group of people, excludes that group of people, on our side but against your side, etc., etc.).

Buddhism is a teaching that is not antithetical to science; hence, Einstein’s proclivity toward Buddhism. If you want to know more about the source of divine manifest intelligence and consciousness, study quantum physics and string theory. We Buddhist will embrace and commend you for your understanding of what makes up the Unified Field. Other religions might cast you out. There will be no wars fought over the attributes of god in Buddhism. Call " It " whatever you like. " It " is the same.
silliman
[/quote="BruceTheDauber
Exactly. The Buddhist idea of karma requires the existence of a supernatural force (intelligent, but not necessarily personal) that can weigh up the good and bad that people do, and assign fate to them accordingly. It takes faith to believe in such a thing.

Aloha Bruce,

I have enjoyed your discourse very much and look forward to your continued stream of consciousness in this forum.

Speaking more from my personal belief than from any given doctrine, my intuition tells me that karma (the natural law of action and reaction) has less to do with weighing up the "good" and "bad" (or being judgmental and partial) as it simply has to do with nature's way of recording all forms of manifest (behavior) and unmanifest (thought vibrations) actions and allowing a free flow of consequences in response to the totality of those actions.

For example, if a mud slide slips down the mountain side, it moves other material beneath it. No judgment, no goodness, no badness -- just reaction to action.

If a person takes to excessive drinking, s/he may experience impaired judgment and have an accident, or after years of abusing alcohol, his or her body might become diseased and die prematurely. No judgment, no goodness, no badness -- just consequence to action.

That's just how I intuit the concept of karma.
mike1reynolds
silliman wrote:
Aloha Mike,

Aloha Silliman!

silliman wrote:
Albert Einstein said, “If there is any religion that would cope with modern
scientific needs it would be Buddhism.”

Eistein was also very much a theist.

silliman wrote:
In keeping with the spirit of openness and inclusiveness, Buddhism does not fall into the tar pit of describing the attributes of god (e.g., god is a old man with a white beard, god is a woman, god has this name, god has than name, god can do that, god is angry, passionate, dispassionate, vengeful, merciful, loves this group of people, excludes that group of people, on our side but against your side, etc., etc.).

So then what is the Adibuudha?

silliman wrote:
Buddhism is a teaching that is not antithetical to science; hence, Einstein’s proclivity toward Buddhism.

I certainly never suggested it was, quite to the contrary, I brought it up because of it's parallels to Buddhism.
silliman
mike1reynolds wrote:

silliman wrote:
Buddhism is a teaching that is not antithetical to science; hence, Einstein’s proclivity toward Buddhism.

I certainly never suggested it was, quite to the contrary, I brought it up because of it's parallels to Buddhism.


Aloha Mike,

I certainly never suggested you said it was. Rather than interpret my comment as attacking your position, could it not have been interpreted to supported or agreed with your position.

In my younger days, I spend many hours debating different Christian groups as to what Christ purportedly said or didn’t say, which scholarly (and sometime un-scholarly) works were more correct, and so forth. Each of us thinking we knew with certainty what the sage had really said, when in fact Christ never personally authored any text (of which we have record). My personal “feeling” was that such debates created more tension than peace and lead me to wonder if we were missing something in the simplicity of daily practice.

Though I have very much enjoyed reading the “debate” between you and nam_siddharth as it pertains to the chronology of historical events, interpretations, semantics, terminology, the authenticity of the Canon and who “right” and who is “wrong,” it leads me to ponder more fundamental question to which the practice of Buddhism might speak.

For example,

What teaching is offered by Buddha that nurtures the dismantlement of our egos such that we no longer have the need to feel we are “right?”

As intellectually stimulating and satisfying it is to be thoroughly conversant with the history of Buddhism, and who said what, when and why – how does that add appreciably to improve the quality of every “now” moment of my life as a practicing Buddhist?

Lastly, what is the driving force in Buddhism that makes the greatest impact on the expansion of being and experience of nirvana, cerebral mastery of historical events and the accuracy of what was said in an oral tradition or our personal effort to connect with a larger self through meditation?

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
jayded-wings
Question I wanted to know for the longest, what would it take for someone as "spiritual" as myself convert to Buddhism?
doomz
Quote:
Silliman wrote:
Aloha Doomz,

What "is" Buddha? is a good question and is a deeper question than "Who was Buddha -- which could be interpreted to be a historical query about facts, places, dates, events, etc. Who “is” Buddha? is a question using the stative verb or the verb to be, a state of being, if you will. I believe that Buddhism (and Buddha) has much to do with the quality of “being.”

It has been suggested that the way in which our “being” is refined, is through meditation that leads to self-realization or enlightenment.


Aloha Silliman,

Aloha? <-- hehe what's the meaning since I never learn Buddhism in their real language also lazy to remember those 'Pari' & 'Sangsekerta' words. some kind of 'Greeting' right.

oh at last somebody understand what I really asking above before.
that's right.. Silliman ^_^

moreover.. read this

Buddha just a form,
a final form itself in Buddhism. those who reachh this form that mean at Nirvana stage. the way to become Buddha is by doing meditation just like Sililiman said before to self-realization...bla2

in other word, all soul can be Buddha.. include devil, demon whatever.
but the best easiest form is HUman of course since other like devil, demon always eaten by their passion itself.

as a living-creature, we always die and born again as soon as you die, depend on what 'Karma' you do when you being living. this continue all of your circle-life without ending. now you human then die and born as animal or ghost. hell or heaven just another world that you probrably been born. even you are in animal form in this world you can be born like as in hell depend on your Karma.

just example: you were born around some insane-Tiger which like to torture/eat animal. and you're weake animal there. this tiger torturing animal maybe collecting bad-karma meanwhile you suffer like in hell. "just llike hell" we used to speak. there are many we never understand until you are in the world. world don't earth here.
but a diffrent condition. if you're fish, sea just another new world that every body can fly in your mind which human said that is swiming.

even in paradise living-thing can be suffer depend on Karma. Karma can not be clean, everybody must be paid base on what we have done, just the matter of time.

so when you doing let say: good thing with 8 point and bad thing at 5 point. the Karma you will get is not 8 - 5 = 3 good then yes!!! go in paradise forever. not like this ladies/gent..

in karma theory,
you will receive 8 point good karma mean something good will fall to you with 8 point and then 5 point let's call it 'badluck' will coming.
the timing you receive is them remain unknown soon or later.

the solution to avoid this 'circle' simply by reaching NIRVANA stage.
nirvana is a condition not place like paradise or hell, which easy to said is the condition which not depend to all about the world become emptiness.

a simple example:
hurt, what are feel when you get injure on your skin. that's hurt right?. in fact, you can do it as another perspective. it's feel of nothing. why you have to scream cause by this feeling of hurt? it's nothing really nothing, just injury on your skin. just some blood come out inside your body, so what!. when think it just feel of nothing not hurt. then is nothing. your body is nothing just a 'vechile' of this world you're being now. someday you have to go to another world.

of course Nirvana is more than this example. just nothing when at Nirvana stage. and the person who reach Nirvana we call them Buddha.

there are many people become Buddha.
Sirdatta Gauttama is Buddha too, just same as other Buddha. then why he is so special compare other Buddha? and most Buddhism talking about him. that's because Sirdatta Gauttama is the one who reach the nirvana by himself. not from other ever source, nobody guide him. he discover (not invent) the rule of all over the universe. he named it 'Dharma' (Dharma? am I right?). Karma just one of the rule inside 'Dharma'. and we all world under this rule.

some example:
"nothing is eternity" also one of Dharma rule.
so that's why people don't have to sad when losing something. it just because the timing has come for the related thing to disappear. but we human just can not throw this feeling easily.

note: don't have perspective "born" word above must something come out from some we usually call 'mother'. this kind of born just happen on our world. some other world can be instantly appear or through something that out of our knowlegde.

ooo my 'inspiration' is gone ^^
OK until here.

oo I think i agree some said Buddhism is
"Non-Theist rather than A-Theist"

if something wrong above please just make a correction on another post.
while I may be mistaken ^_^
silliman
doomz wrote:

Aloha Silliman,

Aloha? <-- hehe what's the meaning since I never learn Buddhism in their real language also lazy to remember those 'Pari' & 'Sangsekerta' words. some kind of 'Greeting' right.


Aloha Doomz,

Yup, you got it. It's a greeting. "Aloha in the Hawaiian language means affection, love, compassion, mercy, goodbye, and hello, among other sentiments of a similar nature. It is used especially in Hawai'i as a greeting meaning hello and goodbye. Variations occur based on circumstances when used as a salutation."

I am not Hawaiian, but I live in Hawaii and we all use it as a greeting here. IT also has rather deep spiritual roots.
silliman
jayded-wings wrote:
Question I wanted to know for the longest, what would it take for someone as "spiritual" as myself convert to Buddhism?


Aloha Jayded-wings,

I can only speak from my own rather "free-flowing," “free-spirited" approach to Buddhism (which is far from orthodox). Many practicing Buddhist see Buddhism more as a teaching or philosophy, rather than a formal religion to be joined. I personally have not witnessed any formal rite of passage or analog to Christian baptism for the lay person wishing to join a Buddhist community. However, should you decide to become a monk or move toward an official capacity among the monks or nuns, you may be required to hold more strictly to certain codes of conduct.

A good first step is to read about Buddhism, visit a few Buddhist temples if accessible, continue to talk to other Buddhist (as you’re doing now), and learn how to meditate.

Perhaps Mike, Doomz or nam_siddharth might want to share their knowledge as it relates to your question. They are very well schooled in the teachings.

I am quite certain that different Buddhist sects have different traditions and protocols when it comes to officially recognizing an individual who wishes to become a member of that Buddhist community.
silliman
When Buddha began his teachings, the people did not know what to call him and so they asked him, "Are you god, a devil, an angel, a person or what?" To that Gautama simply replied, "I am awake."

Thereafter, Gautama became known as the Buddha, which means the awakened one or the enlightened one.

From my experience, one of the greatest joys in life has been working through the process of "waking up”. No one else can do this for me. The responsibility is mine and mine alone. The Path and journey I take bears some semblance to the path that others have taken while at the same time being uniquely difference to my needs.
silliman
I really like the flexibility that Buddhism offers: simplicity, complexity or both. Whenever life becomes too overwhelming for me, I just follow the words of Henry David Thoreau when he said, “simplify, simplify, simplify”.

Simply put, if an aspirant of Buddhism wishes to follow the simple principles of Buddha, the can begin by adhering to the following five precepts:

1. I undertake to abstain from harming living beings
2. I undertake to abstain from taking what is not given
3. I undertake to abstain from sexual misconduct
4. I undertake to abstain from false speech
5. I undertake to abstain from intoxicating drugs or drink
silliman
If anyone has a favorite Buddhist parable or legend that has been used over the years to teach a particular teaching of Buddha, please share it with the group. I'd enjoy reading it.

One of my favorites comes from the opening scene from the movie called "The Little Buddha” and it goes like this:

“Once upon a time, in a village in ancient India, there was a little goat and a priest. The priest wanted to sacrifice the goat to the gods. He raised his arm to cut the goat's throat, when suddenly the goat began to laugh.

The priest stopped, amazed, and asked the goat, ‘Why do you laugh? Don't you know I'm about to cut your throat?’ ‘Oh, yes,’ said the goat. ‘After 499 times dying and being reborn as a goat, I will be reborn as a human being.’

Then the little goat began to cry. The high priest said, ‘Why now are you crying?’ And the goat replied, ‘For you, poor priest. 500 lives ago, I too was a high priest and sacrificed goats to the gods.’ The priest dropped to his knees, saying, ‘Forgive me, I beg you. From now on, I will be the guardian and protector of every goat in the land.’

Moral of the Story: The Buddha taught that the only thing truly worth sacrificing is our defilements.
silliman
I found an interesting quote today from the Dalai Lama:

"This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness."
Dalai Lama

Now that a religion I think I can understand.
Smile
silliman
Chuang Yzu once wrote: "Last night I dreamt I was a butterfly. Today, I am a butterfly dreaming I am a man."

I started the discussion group on Buddhism many months ago thinking I might not be the only person interested in Buddhism and that the forum might spark a spiritually enriching medium through which discussion of the unresolved would remain unresolved but would enlighten us along the way.

At first blush, the absence of participation might suggest that Buddhist have nothing to say – which is partially true. “He who thinks he knows, doesn't know. He who knows that he doesn't know, knows.” (Tao-te Ching) For in this context, to know is not to know.
And not to know is to know.

My fellow friends in Buddha… there is no need to say. Continue to meditate in Silence.
Merino
silliman wrote:
Chuang Yzu once wrote: "Last night I dreamt I was a butterfly. Today, I am a butterfly dreaming I am a man."

I started the discussion group on Buddhism many months ago thinking I might not be the only person interested in Buddhism and that the forum might spark a spiritually enriching medium through which discussion of the unresolved would remain unresolved but would enlighten us along the way.

At first blush, the absence of participation might suggest that Buddhist have nothing to say – which is partially true. “He who thinks he knows, doesn't know. He who knows that he doesn't know, knows.” (Tao-te Ching) For in this context, to know is not to know.
And not to know is to know.

My fellow friends in Buddha… there is no need to say. Continue to meditate in Silence.
haha, that is something I noticed not only in Buddhist online discussion groups but with every personal encounter with buddhists. There's just not much to say to each other on the topic of religion/philosophy/spirituality.
A discussion with an 100% materialist with limited knowledge of spirituality is always more rewarding and entertaining Smile
danevans
This has been a fascinating thread...

Buddhism is very interesting, and makes a lot more sense to me than any of the other religions I know about, but I don't think I would identify myself as a Buddhist. I think I just like to keep an open mind about these things.

I have meditated on and off for the last two years or so, which I've found incredibly helpful in controlling some depression/anxiety I've experienced. It's been hard work keeping at it though. Recently I've managed to make some changes in my life, and things have been going much better, and I'm starting to get into meditation again, which has been great so far...

The thing that strikes me about meditation is that it gives you direct experience of the philosophy behind it all - something which seems to be lacking in most other mainstream religions.

Dan
silliman
danevans wrote:
This has been a fascinating thread...
I think I just like to keep an open mind about these things.


Hi Dan,

Thanks for weighing in on the forum on Buddhism. When you say, “I think I just like to keep an open mind about these things” that is exactly what Buddhism is all about. Buddhism is about maintaining “an open mind.” It is all about waking up.

I have also have been a meditator for a number of years and from my experience, nothing (e.g., reading scripture, chanting, performing religious rituals, etc.) can compare to the “direct experience” of meditation you speak of.

I see so many different “forms” of religion – even within Buddhism. And it is all too tempting for some to argue about how or why one form is “better” than the other. Meditation for me is analogous to the sap of the plants and trees. Plants and trees have many different forms, yet the sap remains the universal “sameness” supporting all plants and trees. It brings unity and “oneness.”
Related topics
Lantern Festival
Ausse Minister Brendan Nelson to Tony Blair:
Religion ??
Your relegion
The Religion of Peace
Most peaceful religion
Do you believe in Reincarnation?
Buddhism
Nichiren buddhism Lotus Sutra and Nam-myo-ho-renge-kyo
what's the perfect religion
Religion and selfishness
Buddhism - i need a word with someone who really knows it!
Buddhism is a philosophy
Buddhism: Mostly a Religion
Reply to topic    Frihost Forum Index -> Lifestyle and News -> Philosophy and Religion

FRIHOST HOME | FAQ | TOS | ABOUT US | CONTACT US | SITE MAP
© 2005-2011 Frihost, forums powered by phpBB.