Buddhism: just another "truth"?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Spiny Norman
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by Spiny Norman »

StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 3:54 pm Yes, Theravada is very cut and dry.
Really? :tongue:
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SDC
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by SDC »

Spiny Norman wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 5:06 pm
StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 3:54 pm Yes, Theravada is very cut and dry.
Really? :tongue:
:jumping:
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coffeendonuts
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by coffeendonuts »

StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 3:54 pm
coffeendonuts wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 2:51 amHow long did he last in robes? I actually find Theravada practice terribly boring. Those who can do it for a living are troopers.
Theravada Buddhism isn't for all Buddhists. Some people prefer other traditions, based on their personalities. Yes, Theravada is very cut and dry. But that's the beauty of it.

I take from Theravada, Zen, and the Tibetan schools. They all have their gems.

Do you practice Zen/Chan/Seon or one of the 5 Tibetan schools?

Peace and enlightenment.
I find the entire Buddhist heritage fascinating.
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StrivingforMonkhood
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by StrivingforMonkhood »

Spiny Norman wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 5:06 pm
StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 3:54 pm Yes, Theravada is very cut and dry.
Really? :tongue:
If you have ever dabbled in Tibetan Buddhism, Theravada looks like a much easier maze. I could never get my head around Tibetan Buddhism, even though I have greatly enjoyed their talks on emptiness, visualization meditations (the great silence), etc. :reading:

Zen/Chan/Seon = mysterious/simple, but sometimes too mysteriously simple.

Peace and enlightenment.
May we all fulfill our deepest wish for happiness

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not myself today
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by not myself today »

StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 12:42 am
If you have ever dabbled in Tibetan Buddhism, Theravada looks like a much easier maze. I could never get my head around Tibetan Buddhism, even though I have greatly enjoyed their talks on emptiness, visualization meditations (the great silence), etc. :reading:

Zen/Chan/Seon = mysterious/simple, but sometimes too mysteriously simple.

Peace and enlightenment.
Yes - Theravada strives to adhere very closely to the original teachings of the Buddha, which are all about objective truth as discovered through one's own personal experience, while other strains of Buddhism incorporate the pre-existing religious and cultural beliefs of the places in which they arose, very many of which include notions that are comforting to the mind and the other senses, but the verifiability of which is questionable and about which the Buddha never spoke. Some of these traditions go so far as to produce "sutras" that they attribute to the Buddha but which were in fact composed centuries after his paranibbana (sounds like false speech to me) and some of their followers (and leaders, for that matter) scoff at the actual teachings of the Buddha because they don't coincide with what those followers (and leaders) believe...much of "modern" Buddhism is really rather a hot mess, if you ask me, and in many cases resembles the content and spirit of the original teachings of the Buddha in much the same way much of modern Christianity does the original teachings of Jesus - which is to say, very little. Lots of human desires and egos getting in the way...

Theravada eschews all that and attempts to keep it clean and clear...which often means eschewing the beautiful, colorful, seductive additives that attract so many in favor of the pure and undiluted original substance, beautiful in its own way, but that's a way that many people don't have the patience for. They want bright colors and music and dancing and fairy tales of lands of impossible sensual beauty, gold and gems, et cetera, et cetera...and that's not what Theravada promises, and thus Theravada remains the smaller oxcart on which only the most discerning ride.

That's *my* take on it all, at least. For what my take may be worth (which I understand may be zzzzzzzip).

:D

:anjali:
Ian

Not in the faults of others
nor what they did or failed to do,
but in oneself should be sought
things done, things left undone.

- Dhammapada 4.50
coffeendonuts
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by coffeendonuts »

not myself today wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 6:59 pmeschewing the beautiful, colorful, seductive additives
Ah, like choosing broccoli over the pizza.
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not myself today
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by not myself today »

coffeendonuts wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 7:24 pm
not myself today wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 6:59 pmeschewing the beautiful, colorful, seductive additives
Ah, like choosing broccoli over the pizza.
Heh! Or over the frosted donuts with colored sprinkles (no offense ;) )
Ian

Not in the faults of others
nor what they did or failed to do,
but in oneself should be sought
things done, things left undone.

- Dhammapada 4.50
Dan74
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by Dan74 »

not myself today wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 6:59 pm
StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 12:42 am
If you have ever dabbled in Tibetan Buddhism, Theravada looks like a much easier maze. I could never get my head around Tibetan Buddhism, even though I have greatly enjoyed their talks on emptiness, visualization meditations (the great silence), etc. :reading:

Zen/Chan/Seon = mysterious/simple, but sometimes too mysteriously simple.

Peace and enlightenment.
Yes - Theravada strives to adhere very closely to the original teachings of the Buddha, which are all about objective truth as discovered through one's own personal experience, while other strains of Buddhism incorporate the pre-existing religious and cultural beliefs of the places in which they arose, very many of which include notions that are comforting to the mind and the other senses, but the verifiability of which is questionable and about which the Buddha never spoke. Some of these traditions go so far as to produce "sutras" that they attribute to the Buddha but which were in fact composed centuries after his paranibbana (sounds like false speech to me) and some of their followers (and leaders, for that matter) scoff at the actual teachings of the Buddha because they don't coincide with what those followers (and leaders) believe...much of "modern" Buddhism is really rather a hot mess, if you ask me, and in many cases resembles the content and spirit of the original teachings of the Buddha in much the same way much of modern Christianity does the original teachings of Jesus - which is to say, very little. Lots of human desires and egos getting in the way...

Theravada eschews all that and attempts to keep it clean and clear...which often means eschewing the beautiful, colorful, seductive additives that attract so many in favor of the pure and undiluted original substance, beautiful in its own way, but that's a way that many people don't have the patience for. They want bright colors and music and dancing and fairy tales of lands of impossible sensual beauty, gold and gems, et cetera, et cetera...and that's not what Theravada promises, and thus Theravada remains the smaller oxcart on which only the most discerning ride.

That's *my* take on it all, at least. For what my take may be worth (which I understand may be zzzzzzzip).

:D

:anjali:
This take on other schools of Buddhism is about as accurate as our neighbour, the Pastor's take on Buddhism, when he said the other night, that "it's about praying to your own navel, isn't it?" In other words, it misses the essence and the spirit of them completely.
_/|\_
The_common_zero
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by The_common_zero »

There is a element of Buddhism that is about the things someone can only figure out on there own if that is what you want to know about truth
coffeendonuts
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by coffeendonuts »

Dan74 wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 9:53 pmit misses the essence and the spirit of them completely.
“Mythology, in other words, is psychology misread as biography, history, and cosmology.”

“Myth is much more important and true than history. History is just journalism and you know how reliable that is.”

― Joseph Campbell
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cappuccino
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by cappuccino »

coffeendonuts wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:46 am “Mythology, in other words, is psychology misread as biography, history, and cosmology.”

― Joseph Campbell
Art requires philosophy, just as philosophy requires art. Otherwise, what would become of beauty? ―Paul Gauguin
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Kay
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by Kay »

rhinoceroshorn wrote: Fri Dec 04, 2020 12:23 am Don't be too hard on yourself or others. And this is for monks too.
Lets recall Bhikkhu Pamutto who loved dhutanga and ended up disrobing some time later. I think he pushed too hard. This is what happens in the end. You end up giving up because you don't achieve your illusory standards. :mrgreen:
Go slow and enjoy the path.
Why do you think he disrobed?

Where did you get that info from?
coconut
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by coconut »

Kay wrote: Fri Jan 08, 2021 1:13 pm
rhinoceroshorn wrote: Fri Dec 04, 2020 12:23 am Don't be too hard on yourself or others. And this is for monks too.
Lets recall Bhikkhu Pamutto who loved dhutanga and ended up disrobing some time later. I think he pushed too hard. This is what happens in the end. You end up giving up because you don't achieve your illusory standards. :mrgreen:
Go slow and enjoy the path.
Why do you think he disrobed?

Where did you get that info from?


I don't know who Bhikkhu Pamutto is, but there are videos of him as recent as november 4th, 2020 in what appears to be in monk robes. So unless he disrobed the past 1-2 month, or there is another Bhikkhu Pamutto, thanks for bringing up that Rhino was either ignorant or not truthful in his example against my argument.

edit: it appears he gave up the dhuntanga practice unvoluntarily, due to getting an illness from a tick
After three years, despite finding the lifestyle of a wandering monk incredibly rich, he became very ill from a tick-born illness and with a heavy heart decided to disrobe to attend to his health.
https://buddhistinsights.org/meet-our-resident-monks/

So still a rather poor example to use for an argument, as he did not give up from "pushing too hard", but because of extraneous circumstances, which once dealt with led to his return to robes.
The process of recovery was long, but in 2020 he returned to monasticism and ordained again as a Theravada bhikkhu. Through his illness and after, he has remained committed to Buddhist practice and monastic training in the United States. He currently resides at Empty Cloud Monastery.
So he has never pushed too hard, it seems.
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NuanceOfSuchness
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by NuanceOfSuchness »

lostitude wrote: Thu Dec 03, 2020 8:52 pm Hello,

I’ve been having doubts lately about buddhist teachings, whether in written form or in talks given by monks. I feel that as soon as the topic discussed goes beyond the limits of "mundane" comprehension and goes on to describe things that mere mortals can only accept on faith, the dissonance between my perception of life and this Buddhist’s perception of life begs the question of whether I’m the one who’s deluded, or if he’s the one who’s gone crazy.

I can’t help but imagine the case of someone being presented with a square drawn on a piece of paper. He is told by someone trustworthy that no, this is not a square, this is actually a circle. If this person trains himself diligently for years and years and years to try and see the circle where all he can see at first is a square, will there not come a time when he will be sufficiently messed up to see a circle instead of a square?

What if Bhuddism actually had the same effect? Years of self-imposed conditioning until your perceptions finally align with the texts? And if you’re sane enough that your perceptions don’t really change, then you are told that "you’re not a very good Bhuddist or that your practice is flawed, or that you just have too much karma to gain any fruit from your practice?"

Thanks for your thoughts.
It can often seem like we need to align ourselves with various versions of dhamma. This is because we are looking for direction. If we're not getting that direction from dhamma forums or books, then we find direction and meaning in a society that thinks it knows what we need: objects, activities, and people.

You are correct, various Buddhist traditions 'condition' those who participate in their teachings. Firstly, ones must learn correct attention and this comes from teachings about meditation, concentration and mindfulness. Secondly, as we gather this conditioned momentum and roll forwards, we develop insights, realizations and other 'higher knowledges' about things and stuff not previously known to us. This is when we discover our own autonomy because we have directly experienced for ourselves the true meaning of 'work for your own salvation, with diligence' meaning 'find out for yourself what is true'.

Now, there can be a price to pay for such an endeavour: one can lose themselves in the 'conditioning phase'. The aggregates gather around the atmosphere of Buddhism with such tightness that prizing open that degree of dense consciousness seems nearly impossible. This is sometimes referred to as a spiritualized ego. They claim silly things like enlightenment, but they are really washed over in a subtle delusion, so subtle that it is just outside their awareness.

Your question shows a healthy demonstration of discernment; a discernment that should serve you well when wading through the often sticky territory of Buddhism.

Buddhism is not what the Buddha taught: it is a second-hand interpretation made into a convenient model that entices a neurotic mind. The Buddha's words themselves are not true. He used words as a means to leverage the aggregates. His words are merely implements, tools, utensils, apparatus, gadgets.

Never believe anything that the Buddha says. Never believe anything that the so-called learned scholars say about what the Buddha said. This does not mean you should disregard them, hold lightly what they say until you feel you have enough of your own autonomy to venture forth in your own way.
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cappuccino
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Re: Buddhism: just another "truth"?

Post by cappuccino »

NuanceOfSuchness wrote: Sat Jan 09, 2021 8:18 pm Never believe …
you need faith
Art requires philosophy, just as philosophy requires art. Otherwise, what would become of beauty? ―Paul Gauguin
Good for Your Soul
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