Why did you choose Theravada?

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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby Cafael Dust » Fri Dec 25, 2009 9:42 pm

But I know a spade when I see one. And, all modesty aside, I know something about writing.

Now some texts I do understand only too well, but not on their own terms. Some texts use various devices known to advertisers, other religions, propaganda machines etc etc. They employ loaded questions, poisonings of the well and other ad-hominem logical fallacies to attack their opponents - confusing since often their opponents have vanished into history, leaving us with unbalanced writing. They employ tautologies, what I will call 'appeals to grandiosity of imagery', Emperor's New Clothes arguments (only wise/brave/high quality people can understand this...), chain letter type threats e.g. 'spread this sutra and you will be enlightened very soon, disparage it and you will die!'... (...idiots. I hate chain letters), and, oddly for Buddhism, homunculus arguments, to support their own poorly defined ideas, or actually, usually not their ideas but their desire to increase support for their sectarian missions.
Not twice, not three times, not once,
the wheel is turning.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby jcsuperstar » Fri Dec 25, 2009 10:19 pm

are we still talking about the lotus sutra? i read somewhere that Sanskrit scholars think very little of it as a text and whomever wrote it must not have been very proficient in the language. but my own personal opinion was it just dragged on and on and never fully delivered. my zen master once asked me what i thought of it, and i said it only seems to teach that it is the best sutra ever but never really goes anywhere as far as really teaching anything. he agreed. i was so much more fond of sutra like the heart and diamond.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Fri Dec 25, 2009 10:22 pm

jcsuperstar wrote:are we still talking about the lotus sutra? i read somewhere that Sanskrit scholars think very little of it as a text and whomever wrote it must not have been very proficient in the language. but my own personal opinion was it just dragged on and on and never fully delivered. my zen master once asked me what i thought of it, and i said it only seems to teach that it is the best sutra ever but never really goes anywhere as far as really teaching anything. he agreed. i was so much more fond of sutra like the heart and diamond.

Sanskrit scholars also think very little of the "The Buddha" as an actual person.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:02 am

pink_trike wrote:
I was just pointing out that without a very thorough understanding of how the Sutra was constructed, the specific use of metaphor and allegory, and more importantly, the cultural milieu within which it was constructed, it would be impossible to even consider the possibility of the grand conclusions you put forth.

Back up your claim.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:17 am

pink_trike wrote:Sanskrit scholars also think very little of the "The Buddha" as an actual person.

Do they? :( Well I think he's awesome... so there.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:25 am

Mawkish1983 wrote:
pink_trike wrote:Sanskrit scholars also think very little of the "The Buddha" as an actual person.

Do they? :( Well I think he's awesome... so there.

Perhaps I should have underlined "actual" - meaning a flesh and blood person who lived and died. Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:29 am

pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:36 am

tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.

I'm keen to see this too :) my understanding was that the styles of the teachings in the Pali Canon were sufficiently similar to suggest a common teacher... but I may be wrong and no immediate source comes to mind. Anyway, does 'no evidence' = 'no existance'? I wonder how much evidence of your existence will be around in 2500 years time. Would "I woz ere, signed Buddha" etched into the Bodhi tree be sufficient?

Sorry, I'm being facetious. :)
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:41 am

tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.

Too busy right now, and its irrelevant to me whether he lived or not. If it matters to you, do the research (outside of institutional Buddhism).
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:44 am

Mawkish1983 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.

I'm keen to see this too :) my understanding was that the styles of the teachings in the Pali Canon were sufficiently similar to suggest a common teacher... but I may be wrong and no immediate source comes to mind. Anyway, does 'no evidence' = 'no existance'? I wonder how much evidence of your existence will be around in 2500 years time. Would "I woz ere, signed Buddha" etched into the Bodhi tree be sufficient?

Sorry, I'm being facetious. :)

There are detailed, cross-referenced verification from different countries for very many people who lived during periods much earlier than the time the Buddha is generally believed by Buddhists to have lived. There is a notable absence/shortage of this kind of verification for "The Buddha"...verification that should be quite abundant given the number of words attributed to him.
Last edited by pink_trike on Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:47 am

easy cop out, if it really didn't matter to you you wouldn't say it!
Back up your claim, or don't claim!!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:50 am

I wonder if the caustic atmosphere I am perceiving here is my own mental construction... I hope it is. I don't like a bad atmosphere, particularly in a forum such as this.

:group:
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:51 am

Mawkish1983 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.

I'm keen to see this too :) my understanding was that the styles of the teachings in the Pali Canon were sufficiently similar to suggest a common teacher...

They are sufficiently similar to suggest a common style of oral tradition...but this reflects nothing about the origin of the content.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 1:55 am

Manapa wrote: if it really didn't matter to you you wouldn't say it!

Wrong. :smile:

I could care less if there was ever an actual living "The Buddha". I'm interested in the practices and testing the teachings. Nothing more.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:00 am

pink_trike wrote:
Manapa wrote: if it really didn't matter to you you wouldn't say it!

Wrong. :smile:

I could care less if there was ever an actual living "The Buddha". I'm interested in the practices and testing the teachings. Nothing more.


so your making claims that the buddha didn't exist based on what practice?
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:09 am

Manapa wrote:
pink_trike wrote:
Manapa wrote: if it really didn't matter to you you wouldn't say it!

Wrong. :smile:

I could care less if there was ever an actual living "The Buddha". I'm interested in the practices and testing the teachings. Nothing more.


so your making claims that the buddha didn't exist based on what practice?

No, I didn't offer any opinion about whether the Buddha ever existed or not.

I said that scholars aren't able to find sufficient evidence to support such a claim and are increasingly less willing to accept "facts" put forth by institutional Buddhism regarding the Buddha's existence.

I didn't say that there was any practices that supported the opinion of scholars. I said that it is irrelevant to me whether the Buddha actually lived or not...my interest is only in the practices and testing the teachings.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:22 am

pink_trike wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.

Too busy right now, and its irrelevant to me whether he lived or not. If it matters to you, do the research (outside of institutional Buddhism).

Well, so much for your claim. Nothing here to take seriously, then, it would seem.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:31 am

tiltbillings wrote:Well, so much for your claim. Nothing here to take seriously, then, it would seem.

Again, I'll point out that it wasn't my claim...I didn't state an opinion either way.

Tilt, have you noticed that people claim on this board all time that there was an actual living Buddha? Likely you don't even give it a thought when they do - you, like most of them, read in buddhist books that he existed - no further verification needed. I've never heard you demand "Back up your claim" to any of them. So why the big fluff about a claim (not mine) that he may not have existed?

I realize that if you have a lot of emotion invested in the idea of a Buddha that actually lived that a suggestion by scholars that he may be a conceptual devise might be uncomfortable, but to me its pretty insignificant and not worth a mad dash to the bookshelves just to comfort you. :smile:
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:41 am

pink_trike wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Well, so much for your claim. Nothing here to take seriously, then, it would seem.

Again, I'll point out that it wasn't my claim...I didn't state an opinion either way. Tilt, have you noticed that people claim on this board all time that there was an actual living Buddha? I've never heard you demand "Back up your claim" to any of them. I realize that if you have a lot of emotion invested in the idea of a Buddha that actually lived that a suggestion by scholars that he may be a conceptual devise might be uncomfortable, but to me its pretty insignificant and not worth a mad dash to the bookshelves just to comfort you.

I do not need comfort. You are the one who made claim about what "Sanskrit" scholars say, and you are the one when asked, who refused to back it up, making your claim meaningless.

Just to be clear about what was said:

tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it [emphasis added]...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Why did you choose Theravada?

Postby pink_trike » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:45 am

tiltbillings wrote:I do not need comfort. You are the one who made claim about what "Sanskrit" scholars say, and you are the one when asked, who refused to back it up, making your claim meaningless.

Just to be clear about what was said:

tiltbillings wrote:
pink_trike wrote: Increasingly, scholars are unable to find any solid evidence of it [emphasis added]...evidence that should be available if he actually lived and wasn't just a conceptual devise.

Back up your claim.


Too busy right now, and its irrelevant to me whether he lived or not.If it matters to you, do the research (outside of institutional Buddhism).


emphasis added... :juggling:

I find it hard to believe that you're not aware of this ongoing debate between secular scholars and the Buddhist institution.
Last edited by pink_trike on Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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