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Enlightenment

is not something you attain.

It is something that happens to you.

Active vs passive.

What we do, we do with our minds, whereas enlightenment is no-mind. Therefore, there is no question of using the mind to go beyond the mind.

So you don't 'become' enlightened. Enlightenment happens to you.

This is the zen line, basically.

Discuss.

Shoshin

Comments

  • JaySonJaySon Florida Veteran

    In a sense everyone is already enlightened because enlightenment is our nature, but it's like a sky covered with clouds, the clouds obscuring the view while not harming the sky.

    ShoshinTravellerlobster[Deleted User]
  • First an analogy of a field. A seed has the potential. If there is no seeds no matter how much water and fertilizer there would be no result. There is the seed but without applying the method there is no result. Just the seed without applying the methods tilling the earth, fertilizing, and watering. Without the application of the method and effort there is no result. And it is in the case of enlightenment as well.

    Another analogy.

    The oil in the mustard seed is the same as the oil that is extracted from it. But until: you know there is oil, you know how to extract it, and you actually extract it... until then you cannot call it the same as the oil extracted from the mustard seed.

    Traveller
  • @Shoshin said:

    @techie said:
    [Enlightenment] is something that happens to you.

    Sort of true...but there is no longer a "you" (no yoU in enlightenment)

    Sort of true. :p There was only ever the impersonal phenomenon of the conceit, 'I am'.

    TravellerJaySonShoshinBuddhadragon
  • TravellerTraveller East Midlands UK Veteran

    @DhammaDragon I wish I could give that an insightful and an awesome.

    SnakeskinSocairBuddhadragon
  • @Traveller said:
    @DhammaDragon I wish I could give that an insightful and an awesome.

    I changed mine to awesome. ;)

    Buddhadragon
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran

    @techie said:
    is not something you attain.

    It is something that happens to you.

    Active vs passive.

    What we do, we do with our minds, whereas enlightenment is no-mind. Therefore, there is no question of using the mind to go beyond the mind.

    So you don't 'become' enlightened. Enlightenment happens to you.

    This is the zen line, basically.

    Discuss.

    I think to be enlightened is to know or realise something. To no longer be in the dark or ignorant about something.

    I think it is an important step on the journey to becoming ever more aware but I see it more as a means to an end rather than the goal itself.

    BuddhadragonSnakeskinShoshin
  • techietechie India Veteran

    @David said:

    @techie said:
    is not something you attain.

    It is something that happens to you.

    Active vs passive.

    What we do, we do with our minds, whereas enlightenment is no-mind. Therefore, there is no question of using the mind to go beyond the mind.

    So you don't 'become' enlightened. Enlightenment happens to you.

    This is the zen line, basically.

    Discuss.

    I think to be enlightened is to know or realise something. To no longer be in the dark or ignorant about something.

    I think it is an important step on the journey to becoming ever more aware but I see it more as a means to an end rather than the goal itself.

    I am using the word in a Buddhist context only, what the Buddha attained. This, I feel, is something that happens rather than something you do. Why? Because many conditions may have to come together to cause enlightenment ... we can't control all of them.

    lobsterSnakeskin
  • Because many conditions may have to come together to cause enlightenment ... we can't control all of them.

    Indeed.
    We can facilitate many of them (sila). We can practice meditation and attention, concentration, 8 fold path, precepts, directional flows etc. Good teachers exemplify and illustrate the Way. Mediocre teachers repeat dogma and follow rules. The enlightened provide what is required.

    No guarantees. We have to do the work.

    We have to be flexible but unbending. Open but closed to ignorance. Care free but determined. Perfectly flawed and accepting of our Perfect Buddha Nurture ...

    Iz plan.

    BuddhadragonSocairperson
  • BuddhadragonBuddhadragon Carpe Diem Samsara Veteran

    @lobster said:
    We can facilitate many of them (sila). We can practice meditation and attention, concentration, 8 fold path, precepts, directional flows etc. Good teachers exemplify and illustrate the Way. Mediocre teachers repeat dogma and follow rules. The enlightened provide what is required.

    No guarantees. We have to do the work.

    "Facilitate" is a fantastic word, @lobster.
    The Buddha had studied under different teachers and tried many methods before his Enlightenment.

    Development of insight does not happen by chance.
    Fighting ignorance, overcoming delusive thinking, is a very proactive process of deliberate choice.
    We do the field work by practising the N8P.
    Buddhadhamma is a path of practice, not an intellectual embellishment.

    But yes, there are no guarantees of Enlightenment.
    Some people may intellectually grasp truths and continue to be deluded, while others make a click in a second.

    SocairDavidlobsterShoshin
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited February 27

    @techie said:

    @David said:

    @techie said:
    is not something you attain.

    It is something that happens to you.

    Active vs passive.

    What we do, we do with our minds, whereas enlightenment is no-mind. Therefore, there is no question of using the mind to go beyond the mind.

    So you don't 'become' enlightened. Enlightenment happens to you.

    This is the zen line, basically.

    Discuss.

    I think to be enlightened is to know or realise something. To no longer be in the dark or ignorant about something.

    I think it is an important step on the journey to becoming ever more aware but I see it more as a means to an end rather than the goal itself.

    I am using the word in a Buddhist context only, what the Buddha attained. This, I feel, is something that happens rather than something you do. Why? Because many conditions may have to come together to cause enlightenment ... we can't control all of them.

    I mean no offence. Enlightenment is to finally understand how things are. This is in the Buddhist context. However, when we are talking about being fully aware and living in perfect harmony then I think the term Buddha used meant awake more than it meant to know something.

    Something that happens rather than something we do... I agree but everybody is different and see things differently. Some may attain sudden satori over something that only serves to vex others while those others may gradually work diligently to grasp and live accordingly.

    And to me, living accordingly Is where the being awake comes in.

    Enlightenment can mean so many things to so many Buddhists but being awake and completely aware of what is going on means exactly that.

    It often takes practice and no amount of answers to intellectual questions will bring us any closer to the here and now.

    ShoshinBuddhadragonlobster[Deleted User]
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Socair said:
    No thank you.

    I'm with him 👍👍

    SocairBuddhadragon
  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran

    @techie said:
    So you don't 'become' enlightened. Enlightenment happens to you.

    This is the zen line, basically.

    Discuss.

    I would agree that is the zen line, just as long as you remove the "to you" part.

    "There are, strictly speaking, no enlightened people, there is only enlightened activity." ~Shunryu Suzuki

    lobsterShoshinSnakeskinadamcrossley
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Enlightenment can mean so many things to so many Buddhists but being awake and completely aware of what is going on means exactly that.

    It often takes practice and no amount of answers to intellectual questions will bring us any closer to the here and now.

    That seems exactly right, however the most awesome part of your response @David is this:

    I mean no offence

    because it sounds like a genuine understanding that you do on occasion get offended or cause offence (one of my wrathful hobbies). :p I can be very confusing and patronising, these very components can be utilised with awareness. So understanding or awareness of our tendencies is part of the process of owning them, rather than being owned by them ...

    Iz plan. B)

    Snakeskin
  • SocairSocair Veteran

    @dhammachick said:

    @Socair said:
    No thank you.

    I'm with him 👍👍

    I'm with her 👍👍

    KundoBuddhadragon
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Guys.... get a room....

    :D

    SocairSnakeskinKundoBuddhadragon
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @techie said:

    @federica said:
    Guys.... get a room....

    :D

    I am with you.

    Ménage à trois ;)

    Buddhadragonlobster
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Shoshin said:

    @techie said:

    @federica said:
    Guys.... get a room....

    :D

    I am with you.

    Ménage à trois ;)

    Nope. I don't share.

    SocairBuddhadragon
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @dhammachick said:

    @Shoshin said:

    @techie said:

    @federica said:
    Guys.... get a room....

    :D

    I am with you.

    Ménage à trois ;)

    Nope. I don't share.

    Nor I. Definitely your conventional ordinary, run-of-the-mill, unadventurous type.

    (Believe that, and you can braid apple sauce....)

    ShoshinSocairKundolobster
  • SocairSocair Veteran

    @techie said:

    @federica said:
    Guys.... get a room....

    :D

    I am with you.

    @dhammachick said:

    @Shoshin said:

    @techie said:

    @federica said:
    Guys.... get a room....

    :D

    I am with you.

    Ménage à trois ;)

    Nope. I don't share.

    I don't share either.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Dharma orgy? o:)

    I'll join :3

    It is the enlightened thing to do ... <3

    ShoshinSocairBuddhadragon
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited March 3

    @lobster said:

    Enlightenment can mean so many things to so many Buddhists but being awake and completely aware of what is going on means exactly that.

    It often takes practice and no amount of answers to intellectual questions will bring us any closer to the here and now.

    That seems exactly right, however the most awesome part of your response @David is this:

    I mean no offence

    because it sounds like a genuine understanding that you do on occasion get offended or cause offence (one of my wrathful hobbies). :p

    Yes, for sure.

    Often times though I'm just being frank and people take it for being gruff. Or trying to be funny and people think Im being serious and vice versa.

    Other times I am called on to defend a view and that also gets mistaken for clinging to said view when really it's the logic I'm clinging to. I often find myself defending the validity of a view that I personally don't even prescribe to. Funny that.

    I can be very confusing and patronising, these very components can be utilised with awareness. So understanding or awareness of our tendencies is part of the process of owning them, rather than being owned by them ...

    Iz plan. B)

    Yeah but mostly it was just a friendly reminder that we are in a friendly place.

    That other stuff is a given. We are after all just being human.

    Edit to add: I probably should have knocked first. Looks like everybody got a room.

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @David said:
    Often times though I'm just being frank

    But I thought you said your name was @David ;)

    KundoBuddhadragonSocair
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    That's why Frank Spencer (the character in 'Some Mothers do Have 'em') was called Frank. Because his child-like qualities made him say things exactly as they were to him.
    Michael Crawford was Genius.

    I digress.
    Apologies.
    Carry on.

  • CarameltailCarameltail UK Explorer

    Here is an "interesting" way to approach it. It's from a taoist based site though so hmm but i'll use it just because it summarises it well and from an interesting perspective.

    'How much time and energy are you going to dedicate to finding this pink dragon?
    Remember, you don’t live in a fantasy world. People demand things of you every day. You’ve got bills to pay and relationships to maintain.

    Enlightenment is a dude living about 4 blocks away from you. You need to know what he looks like and to get your life in enough order to visit him and then actually visit him. The only reason you won’t go there is because you don’t want to visit him.

    In fact, after you’ve visited him, you’ll realize that you've already met him.

    Maybe you even went to school together!'
    -From Taoism for the modern world

    lobsterShoshinBuddhadragon
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited March 3

    That is interesting @Carameltail <3

    As I realised I just might not have the karma to be enlightened, I started to prepare myself for the realised, so I might at least support them in some capacity ...

    This aspiration to be of service, rather than a service scavenger, allowed me to become aware of everyday eagles. The enlightened can be odd ducks, shy or private birds. Some few are facilitators and teachers.

    Not all odd behavour is realised obviously but the chances are if prepared, we are more likely to enter the realm of Light or in Buddhist terms - Nibanna.

    BuddhadragonSocair
  • “Even if you obtain some ideas by studying koans and words, it may cause you to go further away from the buddha ancestors’ path. Instead, dedicate your time to sitting upright, not seeking achievement, and not seeking enlightenment. This is the ancestral way.”

    “Sit zazen wholeheartedly, conform to the buddha form, and let go of all things. Then, leaping beyond the boundary of delusion and enlightenment, free from the paths of ordinary and sacred, unconstrained by ordinary thinking, immediately wander at ease, enriched with great enlightenment.”

    ‘The Essential Dogen’
    td. by Kazuaki Tanahashi

    lobster
  • bamlaw99bamlaw99 Colorado New

    @techie said:
    is not something you attain.

    Enlightenment may be attained in stages.

    It is something that happens to you.

    Enlightenment is an event or serious of events leading to the complete cessation of the process which has been mistaken for being an entity.

    Active vs passive.

    This is not a helpful inquiry. There is a path to follow, things to do, and things to avoid doing. There is no series of activities which can be undertaken to accomplish the goal. This is not a system which can be gamed by understanding the rules, nor is it something you can just sit back and wait for it to happen to you. If you desire enlightenment, follow the 8-fold path. However, for the most part, this path is merely keeping you from doing things which will lead you away from enlightenment, rather than telling you to do anything which will directly cause it to occur.

    What we do, we do with our minds, whereas enlightenment is no-mind. Therefore, there is no question of using the mind to go beyond the mind.

    This is incoherent wordplay nonsense which will not help.

    So you don't 'become' enlightened. Enlightenment happens to you.

    Enlightenment is a transformation which comes about as a result of understanding. Enlightenment begins when you see things the way they really are rather than believing anything. It is the difference between taking someone's word for 2 + 2 = 4 and taking 2 oranges and 2 apples, being able to count out 4 pieces of fruit, and then understanding that if you have 2 bricks from Tom and 2 bricks from Adam, you will have a total of 4 bricks.

    Once you see reality beyond the delusion, it changes you - sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. However, once you see that the most fundamental thing you ever believed about yourself was all smoke and mirrors, you change in such a way that you do less and less to perpetuate the continuation of the process you formerly thought of as a self.

    To put it in Buddhist terms, you stop craving. You stop craving because you see that there is no getting ahead. There is no way to win. It is all suffering. You see this and you see the way to make it stop. As a consequence, that process slows and eventually stops. When it stops, you stop, because that is all you ever were - a process caused to appear as an entity through dependent origination.

    CarameltaillobsterBuddhadragon
  • BuddhadragonBuddhadragon Carpe Diem Samsara Veteran

    SocairKeromeShoshin
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