35
   

I am a Buddhist and if anyone wants to question my beliefs then they are welcome to do so...

 
 
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 09:03 am
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

So, igm, you apparently practice Buddhism correctly. Are you completely free from suffering and experiencing unconditional happiness?

Frank Apisa wrote:

It is interesting, however, that the question you dodged was: Have you actually achieved this freedom from suffering and totality of happiness? One would think you would feel validated if you have...and that if you hadn't, you would simply acknowledge that you haven't.

On p.27 of 53 I said this (you actually replied Frank... memory not what it used to be perhaps?):


http://able2know.org/topic/220485-27#post-5438798

igm wrote:
Why is it better to understand that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration, rather than saying, 'I don't know what it is and anyone who says they do I suspect is guessing.'? The reason is that I have (to some extent) realized the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration and therefore experience unconditioned happiness; which is happiness that remains whether in pain or unwell or in the midst of any kind of negative circumstance or misfortune. One still has empathy and loving kindness and compassion so it is not like a drug that prevents one living a normal life. It is a life that helps and interacts with others; the unconditioned happiness is a hidden experience that enhances life and health for those Buddhists who can settle the mind in this unelaborated state and then enter everyday life.

So, what you'd been asking for repeatedly yesterday, had already been made available to you... before your many requests... I must have had another point to make... Wink

Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 09:27 am
@igm,
Quote:
Why is it better to understand that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration, rather than saying, 'I don't know what it is and anyone who says they do I suspect is guessing.'? The reason is that I have (to some extent) realized the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration and therefore experience unconditioned happiness; which is happiness that remains whether in pain or unwell or in the midst of any kind of negative circumstance or misfortune. One still has empathy and loving kindness and compassion so it is not like a drug that prevents one living a normal life. It is a life that helps and interacts with others; the unconditioned happiness is a hidden experience that enhances life and health for those Buddhists who can settle the mind in this unelaborated state and then enter everyday life.


So…you are saying that you have actually achieved freedom from suffering and totality of happiness?

Why would you not want to share that when I asked? Why go through the trouble of referring back to a post three months ago…in a thread with over a thousand replies? (My memory is getting poorer as I age, I acknowledge that. But I can still do Killer Sudoku's and the Rubik's Cube...so I am not ready for Happy Acres yet!)

Anyway…congratulations on these achievements.

Couple of comments, if I may:


Quote:
Why is it better to understand that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration, rather than saying, 'I don't know what it is and anyone who says they do I suspect is guessing.'?


What makes you think it is? How do you know the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration (whatever that means)…and why on Earth would you consider that “better” than simply acknowledging that “I do not know…and I suspect anyone who says they do is guessing?”

I much prefer my take. It says what I mean…and it doesn’t make an unnecessary assumption about whether or not such knowledge is possible. I know I do not have that knowledge...I do not know that the knowledge is impossible to obtain.


Quote:
The reason is that I have (to some extent) realized the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration and therefore experience unconditioned happiness…


So…you are saying you experience unconditional happiness BECAUSE you realize (to some extent) that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration???

Quite a stretch, wouldn’t you say? Why would that "realization" engender unconditional happiness in you?

In any case…using your description of “unconditional happiness”…I suspect almost all of us qualify…even those who are not especially taken with meditation or Buddhism. I am one of the most content individuals I know...and I do not meditate nor am I a Buddhist.

So I am not sure of your point.

But I thank you sincerely for discussing this with me rather than being dismissive, igm.

If you could deal with some of the questions I raised while trying to understand your response, I would be most grateful.
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 09:41 am
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

Quote:
Why is it better to understand that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration, rather than saying, 'I don't know what it is and anyone who says they do I suspect is guessing.'? The reason is that I have (to some extent) realized the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration and therefore experience unconditioned happiness; which is happiness that remains whether in pain or unwell or in the midst of any kind of negative circumstance or misfortune. One still has empathy and loving kindness and compassion so it is not like a drug that prevents one living a normal life. It is a life that helps and interacts with others; the unconditioned happiness is a hidden experience that enhances life and health for those Buddhists who can settle the mind in this unelaborated state and then enter everyday life.


So…you are saying that you have actually achieved freedom from suffering and totality of happiness?

In blue above... again already information given to you Frank and also in the previous post's link... where it is explained more fully... http://able2know.org/topic/220485-27#post-5438798

Quote:
Why is it better to understand that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration, rather than saying, 'I don't know what it is and anyone who says they do I suspect is guessing.'?

Again, already explained: because of the experience of unconditioned happiness... something that you are not claiming you have with the 'I don't know approach to life'.

If you have further questions Frank... that I haven't already answered then please ask them... but I'd prefer and must request that they are... one at a time.

Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 09:57 am
@igm,
igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

Quote:
Why is it better to understand that the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration, rather than saying, 'I don't know what it is and anyone who says they do I suspect is guessing.'? The reason is that I have (to some extent) realized the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration and therefore experience unconditioned happiness; which is happiness that remains whether in pain or unwell or in the midst of any kind of negative circumstance or misfortune. One still has empathy and loving kindness and compassion so it is not like a drug that prevents one living a normal life. It is a life that helps and interacts with others; the unconditioned happiness is a hidden experience that enhances life and health for those Buddhists who can settle the mind in this unelaborated state and then enter everyday life.


So…you are saying that you have actually achieved freedom from suffering and totality of happiness?

In blue above... again already information given to you Frank and also in the previous post's link... where it is explained more fully... http://able2know.org/topic/220485-27#post-5438798


Okay...let's take one question at a time.

I apparently am not able to grasp your meaning here, igm.

You seem to me to be saying that the reason you experience unconditional happiness is because you have (to some extent) realized the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration.

I question whether you can actually "realize" that "the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration"...but even more so, I question why you are suggesting that because you suppose you do realize that "the true nature of reality is beyond elaboration" leads you to unconditional happiness.

Can you explain it to me? (It may have something to do with what the phrase "to some extent" refers to...but I cannot figure it out.)
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 10:04 am
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

Can you explain it to me? (It may have something to do with what the phrase "to some extent" refers to...but I cannot figure it out.)

It means I haven't realized the state of Buddhahood but I can experience the quality, 'to some extent' i.e. not by any means fully.... according to the descriptions of the qualities of Buddhahood.

JLNobody
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 01:27 pm
@igm,
IGM, I do not understand your generosity, i.e., your willingness to spend time engaging one who is "happy" (self-satisfied) and interested only in debate.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 01:29 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

Can you explain it to me? (It may have something to do with what the phrase "to some extent" refers to...but I cannot figure it out.)

It means I haven't realized the state of Buddhahood but I can experience the quality, 'to some extent' i.e. not by any means fully.... according to the descriptions of the qualities of Buddhahood.




Okay, so essentially, the notion of "being free from suffering and experiencing unconditional happiness" is still just a belief.

Same goes for whether or not the Buddha attained it...and same goes for the notion that the Buddha can "teach" anyone to attain it.

Kinda what I thought...and sorta what I have been saying all along.

Thank you for discussing this with me.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 01:31 pm
@JLNobody,
JLNobody wrote:

IGM, I do not understand your generosity, i.e., your willingness to spend time engaging one who is "happy" (self-satisfied) and interested only in debate.


JL...where do you get that from.

I have engaged in the essentials of what has been discussed here. From the very beginning I have suggested that Buddhism is a belief system...and that what you good people are doing is "believing" that this stuff works.

Are the only people who are interested in something other than debate...the people who agree with you?
0 Replies
 
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 01:49 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

Okay, so essentially, the notion of "being free from suffering and experiencing unconditional happiness" is still just a belief.

No Frank, it's an experience not a notion... that is clearly stated.

Changing the subject...

You say you're content Frank... but that can't be the case using my understanding of the word contentment... you must have a kind of vague idea what is meant by that word. You as with mostly everyone else are profoundly discontented... I won't explain unless you ask.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 01:51 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

Okay, so essentially, the notion of "being free from suffering and experiencing unconditional happiness" is still just a belief.

No Frank, it's an experience not a notion... that is clearly stated.


How could you possibly say you have experienced it...when you clearly say you have not?

Quote:


Changing the subject...

You say you're content Frank... but that can't be the case using my understanding of the word contentment... you must have a kind of vague idea what is meant by that word. You as with mostly everyone else are profoundly discontented... I won't explain unless you ask.


Sorry. Used up my quote of one question in this response.
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 01:57 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

How could you possibly say you have experienced it...when you clearly say you have not?

igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

Can you explain it to me? (It may have something to do with what the phrase "to some extent" refers to...but I cannot figure it out.)

It means I haven't realized the state of Buddhahood but I can experience the quality, 'to some extent' i.e. not by any means fully.... according to the descriptions of the qualities of Buddhahood.

Clearly stated (in blue)...

Discontented with my answers Frank?
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 03:14 pm
@igm,
Frank Apisa wrote:
I am one of the most content individuals I know...
0 Replies
 
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 03:18 pm
@JLNobody,
Not much time spent... in the grand scheme of things... it certainly isn't a top priority.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 03:23 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

How could you possibly say you have experienced it...when you clearly say you have not?

igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

Can you explain it to me? (It may have something to do with what the phrase "to some extent" refers to...but I cannot figure it out.)

It means I haven't realized the state of Buddhahood but I can experience the quality, 'to some extent' i.e. not by any means fully.... according to the descriptions of the qualities of Buddhahood.

Clearly stated (in blue)...

Discontented with my answers Frank?


I would use the word “perplexed” rather than “discontented", igm.

I said you have acknowledged that you have not experienced unconditional happiness…and apparently you haven’t. You seem to countering with “I have experienced conditional happiness"...which I consider the same thing.

It isn’t.

One does not “experience perfection” by experiencing imperfection. You are not experiencing unconditional happiness (whatever that means) by experiencing conditional happiness “to some extent.”

We all are happy at times…and not at others. I like to think I am content, which I equate with happy, most of the time…and you apparently feel that way also. Great for both of us.

But we are exploring your assertion that “properly practicing” Buddhism can achieve “unconditional happiness and total freedom from suffering”.

You supposedly properly practice Buddhism…and you still have to guess that the result can be achieved…because you have not experienced it yourself.

I suspect NOBODY has.

I suspect that Buddhism, like Christianity, is of great value and is held in high regard by some people.

But if you are going to discuss it on the Internet, igm, you have got to expect the kinds of challenges to your assertions that I am making.

My question for this response is: Do you understand why this conversation is taking place...and the potential value the conversation has?
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 03:24 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Not much time spent... in the grand scheme of things... it certainly isn't a top priority.


I seriously doubt JL was looking for a response, igm. I think he was trying to insult me in a nice way.
0 Replies
 
igm
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 04:07 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

I said you have acknowledged that you have not experienced unconditional happiness…and apparently you haven’t. You seem to countering with “I have experienced conditional happiness"...which I consider the same thing.

No, I experience an underlying happiness all the time which does not depend on causes and conditions... that is unconditioned... mundane happiness is not what I'm experiencing because... well go back to the link I posted to page 25 and reread it... the experience is unconditioned.

Again, changing the subject back to your 'contentment':

I could make a long list about how (using my definition of discontentment) you are profoundly discontented... as are most people... your mundane happiness is temporary and depends on cause and conditions i.e. it is not unconditioned and that in itself is a form of suffering... all leading to profound discontentment... most of every day of everyone's life when they are not just suffering directly.

That is why the unconditioned is so precious... and that is what I experience... but it is not identical with the 'other' qualities which are attributed to the Buddha... or your notion of what you called 'perfection' which is something I've not mentioned.


Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Thu 5 Dec, 2013 04:27 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

I said you have acknowledged that you have not experienced unconditional happiness…and apparently you haven’t. You seem to countering with “I have experienced conditional happiness"...which I consider the same thing.

No, I experience an underlying happiness all the time which does not depend on causes and conditions... that is unconditioned... mundane happiness is not what I'm experiencing because... well go back to the link I posted to page 25 and reread it... the experience is unconditioned.

Again, changing the subject back to your 'contentment':

I could make a long list about how (using my definition of discontentment) you are profoundly discontented... as are most people... your mundane happiness is temporary and depends on cause and conditions i.e. it is not unconditioned and that in itself is a form of suffering... all leading to profound discontentment... most of every day of everyone's life when they are not just suffering directly.

That is why the unconditioned is so precious... and that is what I experience... but it is not identical with the 'other' qualities which are attributed to the Buddha... or your notion of what you called 'perfection' which is something I've not mentioned.


Ahhh...I see. You are content and happy...and I am falsely thinking I am content and happy.

And that has to do with the fact that I do not come to my happiness and contentment the way you come to yours.

MY QUESTION FOR THIS RESPONSE: Do you realize how much you sound like a Christian proselytizer or a Jehovah's Witness on campaign?
igm
 
  1  
Fri 6 Dec, 2013 11:02 am
@Frank Apisa,
Frank Apisa wrote:

Ahhh...I see. You are content and happy...and I am falsely thinking I am content and happy.

I said I was unconditionally happy and nothing more... you said you prefer to say you are content and not use the word happy... remember Frank? So, your quote above is inaccurate.

Frank Apisa wrote:

MY QUESTION FOR THIS RESPONSE: Do you realize how much you sound like a Christian proselytizer or a Jehovah's Witness on campaign?


Yes... I've given you my opinion which you've asked for over and over again until I gave you an answer... reluctantly... an answer I'd already given you weeks before but you'd forgotten. That is not proselytizing it is responding to repeat requests for an answer... requests coming from you Frank.

Your happiness is conditioned and that is a form of suffering because it won't last... I've already explained how, in my recent posts to you.

You are manifestly discontented and I could give you a long list of how you and most others are discontented... it's the driving force for most human activity.

igm
 
  1  
Fri 6 Dec, 2013 11:15 am
@igm,
Updated my last post.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Fri 6 Dec, 2013 01:35 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Frank Apisa wrote:

Ahhh...I see. You are content and happy...and I am falsely thinking I am content and happy.

I said I was unconditionally happy and nothing more... you said you prefer to say you are content and not use the word happy... remember Frank? So, your quote above is inaccurate.

Frank Apisa wrote:

MY QUESTION FOR THIS RESPONSE: Do you realize how much you sound like a Christian proselytizer or a Jehovah's Witness on campaign?


Yes... I've given you my opinion which you've asked for over and over again until I gave you an answer... reluctantly... an answer I'd already given you weeks before but you'd forgotten. That is not proselytizing it is responding to repeat requests for an answer... requests coming from you Frank.

Your happiness is conditioned and that is a form of suffering because it won't last... I've already explained how, in my recent posts to you.

You are manifestly discontented and I could give you a long list of how you and most others are discontented... it's the driving force for most human activity.


Igm...Buddhism...and Buddhists...are like Christianity and Christians.

You folk all think you have THE answer...and you all spend too time trying to get others to see the "wisdom" of your answer.

Well...if it help get you past the graveyard...use it.

But my guess is I live my life with as much contentment and happiness as you (or any Buddhist)...and the contentment and happiness is of as fine a quality as anything you think you have. But by all means continue to suppose your happiness is of a superior quality...if it helps make you happy.

In any case, I stand by my comment that all you can do is to guess that the Buddha attained whatever you think he attained...and that he can teach others to attain it also.

So...I guess you just have to agree with that...and then go back to being unconditionally happy. Wink
 

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