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

 
 
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Sat 28 Jun, 2014 05:13 am
@Frank Apisa,
I already do, and for that very reason. Not criticising, mind you, just suggesting. How it's intended and how it's received are very different animals, often.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sat 28 Jun, 2014 05:15 am
@FBM,
FBM wrote:

I already do, and for that very reason. Not criticising, mind you, just suggesting. How it's intended and how it's received are very different animals, often.


No problem. I understand.
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 28 Jun, 2014 12:33 pm
@Frank Apisa,
I don't mind your shouting, Frank because you are giving a lot of thought to the posts in this thread. I just wish sometimes that you could reduce the size of your posts. My time is short.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sat 28 Jun, 2014 12:45 pm
@JLNobody,
JLNobody wrote:

I don't mind your shouting, Frank because you are giving a lot of thought to the posts in this thread. I just wish sometimes that you could reduce the size of your posts. My time is short.


Done.
0 Replies
 
Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 12:10 pm
@JLNobody,
Quote:
It is often called Buddha Mind. It is not something we need to strive for since we already have it. I guess we can say that we simply must get out of its way. See why I hate to talk about it?


Yes. But it is a fun thing to think on. It is one of those concepts which cannot be examined with words without becoming vague approximations.
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 06:28 pm
@Cyracuz,
It's also something which does not occur in the Pali suttas. It's a concept made up centuries later.
igm
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Aug, 2014 11:02 am
@FBM,
FBM wrote:

It's also something which does not occur in the Pali suttas. It's a concept made up centuries later.


Do you believe that the self 'truly' exists? Probably not.

Do you believe that phenomena 'truly' exist? If you think that they have momentary existence, then you should use your powers of reasoning to see if this is possible... if you are unable to show how phenomena can 'truly' exist then the Mahayana Sutras may help you to understand why e.g. Nagarjuna's commentaries on the Buddha's Prajnaparamita Sutras.

If you'd rather not think about the emptiness of phenomena I understand.. the Buddha gave many teachings which avoid the need to examine it but they don't show how to become a fully enlightened Buddha or to help others in a way only Buddhas can.

To everyone:

I've just caught up on your posts and found them enjoyable to read. I like the idea - which seems to have developed - that this is the place where 'any' Buddhist can be questioned about their beliefs i.e. a meeting place for anyone to question any Buddhist about their beliefs... in the end though the Buddha taught only one thing... that there is suffering and that it is possible to put an end to it and how to put an end to it... Did he know how to put an end to suffering? Some of us are following his teachings in order to find out and for me atleast it is worthwhile and rewarding just making the attempt.
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Aug, 2014 09:16 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Do you believe that the self 'truly' exists? Probably not.


The Buddha portrayed in the original (Pali) suttas say that any view about it at all prevents understanding.

Quote:
Do you believe that phenomena 'truly' exist?


Personally? I don't have any beliefs about it either way. I report what others say about it, though.

Quote:
If you think that they have momentary existence, then you should use your powers of reasoning to see if this is possible... if you are unable to show how phenomena can 'truly' exist then the Mahayana Sutras may help you to understand why e.g. Nagarjuna's commentaries on the Buddha's Prajnaparamita Sutras.


What's the difference between "existing" and "truly existing"? Also, if you're making/supporting the sunyata doctrine, then it's up to you to present a case for it.

Quote:
If you'd rather not think about the emptiness of phenomena I understand.. the Buddha gave many teachings which avoid the need to examine it but they don't show how to become a fully enlightened Buddha or to help others in a way only Buddhas can.


I'm fine with the original concepts of anatta, anicca and pattica samuppada. If focusing on Nagarjuna's ideas helps you more than focusing on the ideas presented by the Buddha, then go for it.

But when people present Mahayana sutras as equivalent or superior to the suttas made by the Buddha, even though they were written long after he died, then I'm prone to questioning that. They focus heavily on mysticism, worship and the supernatural, whereas those were not the focus of the early suttas. I'm currently writing my M.A. thesis on something closely related to this and am sitting on a stack of research done by scholars who take that claim to task. Gombrich, Kuzminski, Bett, Thompson, Reale...
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Aug, 2014 09:42 pm
@FBM,
It's true that the Mahayana teachings appeared long after the death of the Buddha, but this does not disqualify them. Buddhism has evolved with time. If the Buddha had lived many centuries more he would have contributed to that evolution. To assume that mystical wisdom ended with the death of the Buddha is like assuming the knowledge of evolutionary processes ended with the death of Charles Darwin.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Aug, 2014 09:42 pm
@FBM,
It's true that the Mahayana teachings appeared long after the death of the Buddha, but this does not disqualify them. Buddhism has evolved with time. If the Buddha had lived many centuries more he would have contributed to that evolution. To assume that mystical wisdom ended with the death of the Buddha is like assuming the knowledge of evolutionary processes ended with the death of Charles Darwin.
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 05:56 am
@JLNobody,
Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to say Buddhism hasn't or shouldn't evolve. My issue is when people make up new suttas and pretend that they're originals. New material is fine, but not when it's deceptive. If the Venerable X said it, fine. Just put his name on it, not the Buddha's. (There are Pali Canon suttas that were composed after the Buddha's parinibbana, but the Buddha doesn't appear in them. I was just reading one in the Majjhima Nikaya the other day. Also, the Milindapanha.) Then we can confidently examine the material and see if it's an improvement or not. If it's got the Buddha's name on it, a lot of people are prone to treating it as gospel, so to speak, for fear of irreverence. I'm fine with reading what Nagarjuna or Buddhaghosa or the Dalai Lama wrote. They didn't pretend their words were the Buddha's.
igm
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 06:54 am
@FBM,
FBM wrote:

I'm fine with reading what Nagarjuna or Buddhaghosa or the Dalai Lama wrote. They didn't pretend their words were the Buddha's.


What words (important fundamental concepts) do you know with 'absolute certainty' are pretending that they are the Buddha's words, when you are certain they are not? Also, which of these words definitely contradicts the words which you are 'certain' are the words of the Buddha and why are you 'certain'?

If words (important fundamental concepts) do not contradict an author's core message but arise at a later date and it is impossible to know for certain if it is not the work of the author then it follows that it could be the work of the author but published at a later date and at a more appropriate time.

FBM
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 08:14 am
@igm,
Well, the Buddha as portrayed in the Pali Suttas encouraged each person to strive with unflagging vigor to attain Nibbana in this very lifetime. The Bodhissatva Ideal that Mahayana monks and nuns have to swear to is a vow not to do that. Then there's things like "True Self" vs anatta (non-selfhood). In Mahayana, "Buddha Nature" and "luminous mind" suddenly appears out of nowhere. Doesn't exist in the Pali, as far as I've read so far (probably 80~90% of it). I could go on, but here's a quick run-down: http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/snapshot02.htm

Do you buy the story about the mythical "land of the nagas" where the Buddha's highest teachings were supposed to be held in storage until mankind was ready for them? Seems to me that in order to accept the Mahayana sutras as authoritative, you have to reject the Pali Sutta Pitaka:

Quote:
Salient Features of the Dhamma

There are no dark corners of ignorance, no cobwebs of mystery, no smoky chambers of secrecy; there are no "secret doctrines," no hidden dogmas in the teaching of the Buddha, which is open as daylight and as clear as crystal. "The doctrine and discipline proclaimed by the Buddha shine when open and not when covered, even as the sun and moon shine when open and not when covered" (A.I,283).

The Master disapproved of those who professed to have "secret doctrines," saying, "Secrecy is the hallmark of false doctrines." Addressing the disciple Ânanda, the Master said: "I have taught the Dhamma, Ânanda, without making any distinction between exoteric and esoteric doctrine; for in respect of the truths, Ânanda, the Tathâgata has no such thing as the closed fist of a teacher who hides some essential knowledge from the pupil."n35


http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/buddhism/bud_lt19.htm

(I'm not involved with Buddhanet. It's just what a couple of Google searches turned up.)
igm
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 09:18 am
@FBM,
You should examine your emotions and decide which ones (if any) drive you to appear to make a schism in your own mind... keep an open mind is my suggestion... if you don't have one already.

http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/karma.htm

WEIGHTY (GARUKA) KARMA.
This is either weighty or serious – may be either good or bad. It produces its results in this life or in the next for certain. If good, it is purely mental as in the case of Jhana (ecstasy or absorption). Otherwise it is verbal or bodily. On the Immoral side, there are five immediate effective heinous crimes (pancanantariya karma): Matricide, Patricide, and the murder of an Arahant, the wounding of a Buddha and the creation of a schism in the Sangha. Permanent Scepticism (Niyata Micchaditthi) is also termed one of the Weighty (garuka) Karmas.
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 10:04 am
@igm,
What does this have to do with the historicity of the Mahayana sutras?
igm
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 10:56 am
@FBM,
Is the Dalai Lama a Buddhist in your opinion... is he a member of the Buddhist Sangha?
igm
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 03:47 pm
@FBM,
Actually FBM I'll leave our discussion there... thanks for your contribution.
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 07:55 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Is the Dalai Lama a Buddhist in your opinion... is he a member of the Buddhist Sangha?


I can't think of any reason why I'd need an opinion about that.
0 Replies
 
FBM
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Aug, 2014 07:55 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:

Actually FBM I'll leave our discussion there... thanks for your contribution.


You're welcome and thank you, too.
0 Replies
 
mushin
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Jan, 2018 03:34 pm
@igm,
hi Mushin here, new member. I personally would never question a fellow Buddhist beliefs, it's a personal journey of discovery. Your faith seams strong which I'm sure gives you a little reassurance when you are been tested. There is one question thou I would be interested in your opinion on and that's the illusion we are reborn into and how it may have effected the interpretation's of those teachings
 

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