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Offlinemushroomplume
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Buddhism?
    #6684076 - 03/18/07 05:28 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

I would like this to be a serious thread discussing the merits and flaws of Buddhism. For or against it, I would like to hear your reasonings for why.

:pirate:


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684296 - 03/18/07 06:27 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Oh Buddha, here we go. :rolleyes:

Buddhism is good for those who aren't satisfied with a metaphysical explanations for creation or a system that is based upon the dualities of God and soul.

Buddhism is good for those who are willing to put in the practice necessary to have some realization. It is good for those who wish to understand how the mind functions, and how to truly be happy and help bring others to deep lasting happiness also.

It has great sources of wisdom, with living examples alive and teaching in the world today. It presents a complete path to enlightenment and freedom from suffering.

I could go on for days, but essentially it includes, ethics, compassion and deep wisdom, all without the trappings of a belief system that has to be taken on blind faith.


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Edited by Sinbad (03/18/07 07:12 PM)


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InvisibleBERSERK DESTROYER
King Hella!

Registered: 01/23/07
Posts: 25,656
Re: Buddhism? [Re: Sinbad]
    #6684351 - 03/18/07 06:49 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

I'm in favour of it because it's totally non-authoritarian and has a positive goal in the cessation of desire, as opposed to "submit to God or burn in hell".


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Disclaimer: If you have any kind of heart condition, my posts are not for you. You could literally die from reading the first couple of words in any one of them. Scroll down the page, live your life and prosper, but don't read my posts because your heart will probably explode. I am not joking.


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Offlinemushroomplume
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: BERSERK DESTROYER]
    #6684542 - 03/18/07 07:37 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Sinbad, I can appreciate many aspects of buddhism, but one thing that always nagged me was this.

In buddhism, desire and attatchment are responsible for suffering. I do not really see these things as being necessarily bad though. Striving for Nirvana, wouldn't that be desire in itself?


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684586 - 03/18/07 07:49 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Here is a link to a thread a made a while back covering this very topic. I'm in no way a scholar though, so don't take my word on anything. Do your own research as I could be lying to you :wink:

http://www.shroomery.org/forums/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/6623030/an/0/page/3

Liberation is the cessation of ignorance craving and hatred. Our craving is something we work on giving up. So essentially, when we have realization, there is no longer any craving for enlightenment, but initially there must be this longing. Through practice this longing naturally dissolves.


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Edited by Sinbad (03/18/07 08:13 PM)


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Invisibledblaney
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684647 - 03/18/07 08:11 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Quote:

desire and attatchment are responsible for suffering. I do not really see these things as being necessarily bad though.




They are neither bad nor good. They are what cause and condition suffering, unease, and dissatisfaction, however.

Quote:

Striving for Nirvana, wouldn't that be desire in itself?




Indeed. In this context, Buddhism has been described as a thorn used to remove all other thorns. Ultimately, one must remove even the thorn of Buddhism. But in the mean time, as other thorns are being removed, the Buddhist thorn is infinitely helpful.

Another analogy is of a raft. Buddhism is like a raft that carries you across the river of suffering and ignorance to the other shore (liberation/Nirvana). But once you reach the other shore, there is no longer any need for the raft, so you get rid of it.


--------------------
"What is in us that turns a deaf ear to the cries of human suffering?"

"Belief is a beautiful armor
But makes for the heaviest sword"
- John Mayer

Making the noise "penicillin" is no substitute for actually taking penicillin.

"This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember or overthrow it." -Abraham Lincoln


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: dblaney]
    #6684651 - 03/18/07 08:12 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Indeed, nice post! :thumbup:


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Offlinemushroomplume
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: Sinbad]
    #6684657 - 03/18/07 08:13 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Cool thread Sinbad.

If I understand this correctly. There is nothing inherently wrong with desire and attachment, but there is in thinking that the results of our desires will lead to happiness?


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684701 - 03/18/07 08:32 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Attachment always leads to suffering as it is the habitual tendency that usually accompanies desire. Desire does not always have to be accompanied by craving.

When something arises it passes away. This is the activity of the mind. So when desire arises, we notice and it passes away, naturally liberating, so there is no attachment because there is no identification with it being ours. When we no longer identify with and cling to happiness and suffering, we are simply left with the natural way things are.


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Offlinemushroomplume
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: Sinbad]
    #6684718 - 03/18/07 08:40 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

So, is it alright if I desire a new pair of Air Force Ones?


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684732 - 03/18/07 08:47 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Of course! :wink:

Not that i respect your taste in footwear. :lol:


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Offlinemushroomplume
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: Sinbad]
    #6684751 - 03/18/07 08:59 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Is it ok if I become sad when they get mud on them?


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684756 - 03/18/07 09:01 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Id be sad just to buy them in the first place, considering the slave labor source! :smirk:


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Offlinemushroomplume
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: Sinbad]
    #6684771 - 03/18/07 09:04 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

haha. well I've gotta a lot questions about this buddha stuff, sorry.

if we were all happy, wouldn't that mean the end of romantic art? no more tragic plays that we could relate to, it would be hard to appreciate sad classical pieces, etc, etc.


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Offlinearyah
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684783 - 03/18/07 09:09 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Quote:

oliveplume said:
haha. well I've gotta a lot questions about this buddha stuff, sorry.

if we were all happy, wouldn't that mean the end of romantic art? no more tragic plays that we could relate to, it would be hard to appreciate sad classical pieces, etc, etc.




if we were liberated, wouldnt that mean the end of existance, at least as we understand the term? Its considered a perspective quite outside the scope of the duration of this particular universe anyways..
but in any case, Id say buddhist track at producing great art is rather impressive...


Edited by aryah (03/18/07 09:11 PM)


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Invisibledblaney
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Registered: 10/03/04
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684802 - 03/18/07 09:14 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

I'm with aryah, Buddhist cultures have produced amazing and remarkable pieces of art, including paintings, sculptures, calligraphy, poetry, theater, and probably others.

I think there will always be art and creativity, at least so long as there are minds capable of creation.


--------------------
"What is in us that turns a deaf ear to the cries of human suffering?"

"Belief is a beautiful armor
But makes for the heaviest sword"
- John Mayer

Making the noise "penicillin" is no substitute for actually taking penicillin.

"This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember or overthrow it." -Abraham Lincoln


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684815 - 03/18/07 09:19 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Its more that we are no longer clinging or identifying with our fleeting sensations of happiness and suffering. This includes all emotions which naturally arise and naturally pass away. So, one who is intelligent will have this kind of attitude towards the various moods that arise on the mind. when sadness arises, let it be sad, when happiness arises let it be happy, but also know. Understand its nature and just let it be according to its nature.

When in this way craving is at at end, peace is firmly established. When we have this kind of peace established in our minds, we can depend upon it. No arising can disturb, just as waves cannot disturb the depths of the ocean. Knowing the waves for what they are, not something separate, and can let them naturally be without grasping. This is the true seat of peace.

It is spoken about it in terms of happiness, because this is how worldly people understand the ideal to be, but in reality it has gone beyond. It is beyond both happiness and suffering. Perfect peace.

There is infinite space for creativity, because no arising can disturb, everything is possible.


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Edited by Sinbad (03/18/07 10:14 PM)


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InvisibleIcelander
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: mushroomplume]
    #6684934 - 03/18/07 09:52 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Quote:

oliveplume said:
I would like this to be a serious thread discussing the merits and flaws of Buddhism. For or against it, I would like to hear your reasonings for why.

:pirate:




I'm a fan. Psychologically sound, emotionally sound, spiritually sound. A great way to awaken oneself.

I'm not a fan of some practitioners who are dogmatic and believe it to be the only way. The pomp and ceremony of dress and bells and whistles  is a distraction IMO. Small things really.

In the end if you want to follow a specific system it's very worthwhile. There is little or no difference really in my belief system and that of Buddhism IMO; at the core.


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"Don't believe everything you think". -Anom.

" All that lives was born to die"-Anom.

With much wisdom comes much sorrow,
The more knowledge, the more grief.
Ecclesiastes circa 350 BC


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Offlinearyah
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: Sinbad]
    #6684992 - 03/18/07 10:06 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

and sometimes, the afflictions themselves are considered the tools of awakening :wink:

To get back to the original question, Im sure general information of buddhism was and is explained far better by various learned men and venerables, so all I can hope to relate was my personal experience with it; what attracts and attracted me to buddhism is its philosophy and its practice. And a bit later, its history. In philosophy, its a fascinating alternative to both positivism and metaphysics; it resonated with me personally through western philosophies I somewhat knew before, esp existencialism and (post)structuralism. In fact, my first buddhist book was by a university professor of philosophy, particularly keen on existencialism, that became a buddhist monk.
I found the truth of suffering a liberatory contrast to the idea of that one last thing missing to complete and perfect my continual worldly happiness. I found impermanence of all of great value to both accept the sadness of hard times, and stay not too entangled with the joy of good times. I found dependent arising , causation a usefull way to look at events otherwise ascribed to this or that malignant force in the world (even in secular views) or judgement of anothers failings. I found karma and not-self to be a perfect antidote to extremes of individualism and to both dellusions of personal grandeur as well as to depts of self-loathing..

Instead of either metaphysical theories, or unconscious metaphysical dogmas of positivism, it offered only a raft; instead of absolute Truth, advice and method of self investigation. Instead of Divine authority of teachings and institutions, personal trust in a flesh-and-blood human being of ones choice and preference - or none at all. It did not deny the supernatural, an assertion I could no longer accept after some mushroom experiences; but it didnt give much importance to them either; a kind of 'yeah, sure, and so what' at the face of gods.

Theres a lovely sutra where a monk, in search of an answer to a particular question, reaches in meditative absorption various divinities, and finally Brahma himself. Brahma declares his omniscence and omnipotence as the Creator of All, and the monk replies something like 'friend, I didnt ask you if you were the Creator, or omniscent or omnipotent, I asked you the following question...' :smile:

As far as practices go, its both the diversity and simplicity of them that attracted me. They come in all 'shapes and sizes', from ritual prostrations and symbolic gifts, through simple sitting and just being aware of whatever occurs, to intricate visualizations and mantras overfilled with symbolic significance in the minute details.

As far as negative sides go, well the most prominent one I think is sectarian rivalries; buddhist love to debate it would seem, and not usually having highly centralised organizations , fraction easily, and this has continued it would seem from its earliest times. This gives birth to a wast proliferation of particular points of view, particularly for a religion thats not really supposed to have a singular point of view at all. Another possible consequence of such franctioning is running into outright hoaxes, or at least from some perspectives questionable teachers, and not knowing if one doesnt inform and inquire for oneself.
For someone comming from a background of disliking christianity and all its forms, while essentially profoundly different, buddhism will still display many of those familiar patterns of religions life - something one may percieve as negative, though I think it only is revealing some rather general features of religious life of human beings in general, so one may find oneself reassesing some of the features of religious life in general one previously disapproved, and accepting others as unavoidable limitations to an organised religion..

For someone of theistic background, it may be tempting to put a God or some other at the first glance totally incongruent idea in buddhism, and since buddhism has shown an incredible maleability through its history, even be reasonably convinced one has succeded in doing so.

And finally, buddhism is not only incredibly diverse, but in each of its forms, really huge. Some cannons reach 300 volumes, and thats not counting all relevant commentaries etc. To really know the details one may be interested in may require a lot of study (particularly given the limitedness of fragmented translations available). Also though gaining merit by a rather passive inclusion in the buddhist community is a rather traditional role lay people gladly take, a convert is not likely interested merely in that, in which case the serious practice needed can become quite a drain on ones time if done diligently...


Edited by aryah (03/18/07 10:15 PM)


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InvisibleSinbad
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Re: Buddhism? [Re: aryah]
    #6685035 - 03/18/07 10:16 PM (14 years, 10 months ago)

Great post! :thumbup:

It is more of a Hinayana traditional perspective when talking of lay people only being passive. You don't get that so much in traditions that emphasize more  Mahayana of Vajrayana vehicles.

The question in the story about the monk was something like "where do the four great elements cease and are exhausted?" :smile:


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