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Ionbuddy
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2021 5:20 am

Hi Everyone!

Post by Ionbuddy »

Hello! :hug:

I came here because earlier today I had let anger get the better of me and it really bothered me this time, so I decided maybe I should hang around you guys.

Anyways, I have pretty bad depression. I have unbearable anxiety without several medications, none of them are the heavy hitters like benzos though. I prefer nonaddictive substances. I still have pretty bad anxiety sometimes even with all of that.

I've been reading about Buddhism since I was in high school. I mostly wanted to stick to myself because I had major trust issues with associating too closely with any group. I used to be a 7th Day Adventist and the things they taught me gave me several pretty unhelpful attitudes. Crushing self-hate, obnoxiousness toward people who didn't believe the same way I did, and a reflexive revulsion toward homosexuals and non-believers.

I'm a strong believer in absolute ahimsa, even if I say otherwise in moments of anger or rage. I'm also vegan, haha. There, just fulfilled a common stereotype. :tongue: I don't even want to kill fleas, but I've yet to find a nonviolent solution to infestations of them.

Also, I've been looking for solid evidence for literal rebirth. By solid, I'm talking cast iron skillet to the face solid. Something as undeniable to me as the act of typing this. Maybe that's hyperbole, but it's aspirational in nature. There's a good reason I have this standard, but it's a long and very personal story. Any of you know how to make portals into other realms without dying? Preferably the heavenly realms. I'm being serious, mostly. That would be the best way to convince me of rebirth, or at least I'd consider it more plausible.

I hope I can contribute something to this community.

Okay, wow. This post has been quite negative. Um, here. Have a video of a kitten.

I wish you all well. :anjali:
coconut
Posts: 788
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2020 8:10 am

Re: Hi Everyone!

Post by coconut »

Hello, welcome.

I would recommend you start by reading the suttas, specifically start with samma ditthi sutta, then MN 61 after that one, and then suttas on uposotha after that.

If you follow the 5 precepts then there is no reason to worry about anything because you have done nothing wrong and no one can call you a bad person.

Beyond that, the only thing to "worry" about is how you spend your remaining time on this planet.

Also, before you try to convince yourself of rebirth, first convince yourself that karma is true.

Good luck
Ionbuddy
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2021 5:20 am

Re: Hi Everyone!

Post by Ionbuddy »

coconut wrote: Thu Jan 07, 2021 6:26 am Hello, welcome.

I would recommend you start by reading the suttas, specifically start with samma ditthi sutta, then MN 61 after that one, and then suttas on uposotha after that.

If you follow the 5 precepts then there is no reason to worry about anything because you have done nothing wrong and no one can call you a bad person.

Beyond that, the only thing to "worry" about is how you spend your remaining time on this planet.

Also, before you try to convince yourself of rebirth, first convince yourself that karma is true.

Good luck
Thanks, I'll ready those.

Huh. Well, points for figuring out I have doubts about karma as well because it just seems like a black box with no way to solidly link a moral action and its consequence in the way that is described with karma. However, I don't understand why I would need to convince myself of karma first, though.
coconut
Posts: 788
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2020 8:10 am

Re: Hi Everyone!

Post by coconut »

Ionbuddy wrote: Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:20 am
coconut wrote: Thu Jan 07, 2021 6:26 am Hello, welcome.

I would recommend you start by reading the suttas, specifically start with samma ditthi sutta, then MN 61 after that one, and then suttas on uposotha after that.

If you follow the 5 precepts then there is no reason to worry about anything because you have done nothing wrong and no one can call you a bad person.

Beyond that, the only thing to "worry" about is how you spend your remaining time on this planet.

Also, before you try to convince yourself of rebirth, first convince yourself that karma is true.

Good luck
Thanks, I'll ready those.

Huh. Well, points for figuring out I have doubts about karma as well because it just seems like a black box with no way to solidly link a moral action and its consequence in the way that is described with karma. However, I don't understand why I would need to convince myself of karma first, though.
Because understanding karma helps establish one in the virtue training, which is a pre-requisite for the higher mind training, which at a later point solves your rebirth doubt.

I recommend also reading suttas on how karma works, and the gradual training.
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DNS
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Post by DNS »

Welcome to DW!

arturovm
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Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2021 1:14 pm
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Post by arturovm »

Welcome, fellow newbie!

A short preamble: I was diagnosed with anxiety as well, although I’m mostly on my way to a medication-free life. If you don’t know about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), I’d highly recommend that you check it out. In addition to working with my psychiatrist to find a drug dose that worked for me, CBT has been immensely helpful.

But that aside, it doesn’t take long to realize that the Buddhist practice goes beyond any immediate problems anxiety might cause. One does not even need to be an advanced meditator to realize this, as I can attest from personal experience :P All it requires is that you have a little dedication and some curiosity, and read some suttas.

Regarding your doubts about kamma, might I suggest a non-hand-wavy approach? The way I see it is: kamma is nothing more than the complex relationship between cause and effect in a non-linear system, which our universe is. There are a million factors that interrelate with each other so it’s impossible to directly untangle them all (except for the Buddha), so it’s enough to understand that every action has either an immediate consequence or a consequence down the road.

Of course, that is just my understanding, tinted by my systems-oriented thinking. Any of the old-timers here can feel free to jump in and correct me, and I’d be very grateful.

Lots of goodwill, and may you free yourself from that heavy burden of anxiety,
–A.
Ionbuddy
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2021 5:20 am

Re: Hi Everyone!

Post by Ionbuddy »

arturovm wrote: Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:56 am
A short preamble: I was diagnosed with anxiety as well, although I’m mostly on my way to a medication-free life. If you don’t know about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), I’d highly recommend that you check it out. In addition to working with my psychiatrist to find a drug dose that worked for me, CBT has been immensely helpful.
It's funny you mention CBT. I actually brought it up to a psychologist I used to have one time and he said that's CBT. Apparently I had somehow invented CBT all on my own if memory serves correct.
arturovm wrote: Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:56 am Regarding your doubts about kamma, might I suggest a non-hand-wavy approach? The way I see it is: kamma is nothing more than the complex relationship between cause and effect in a non-linear system, which our universe is. There are a million factors that interrelate with each other so it’s impossible to directly untangle them all (except for the Buddha), so it’s enough to understand that every action has either an immediate consequence or a consequence down the road.
I have a programming as a hobby, so non-obvious cause and effects because of bugs in code is something I'm very familiar with. In fact sometimes it can get pretty messy when a program starts using something like asynchronous procedure calls. I pull my hair out whenever I deal with that lol. It's not really unreasonable to try to look for examples, especially if kamma appears to be on the surface this:

Wholesome or Unwholesome action -> ??? -> Positive or Negative result.

That ??? could be a really really long chain of causes and effects, or just be really difficult to observe.

That said, I'm not dismissing everything the Buddha said because of potential errors about reality. What I do have faith in, however, is that if the claims kamma or rebirth are real, then a series of non-biased tests shouldn't be a problem. It should pass with flying colors. After all, the speed of light is what it is regardless of what I think about it, then so too should kamma or rebirth eventually show up if they're true. :shrug:

May you continue to have a good medicine-free life! :hug:
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