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Enlightenment is Ordinary

YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
edited July 2011 in Philosophy
Ordinary - adj. Uninteresting; commonplace.
Enlightenment - noun. That awareness which frees a person from the cycle of rebirth.

I have seen people say that enlightenment is completely ordinary, that being enlightened is just 'living'. If this were true, then we wouldn't need to do anything to be enlightened. We are already there because we are already living. We are already ordinary. For instance, I'm enlightened. So... there is nothing else for me to work toward. Yet, I will continue to go through life's ups and downs, suffering all along the way from attaching myself to emotions/views/ideas/thoughts, right? It's almost as if walking the path is unnecessary if enlightenment is completely ordinary. Does this mean that the ordinary person is already free from rebirth? There is no reason they should be reborn since they are ordinarily enlightened.

In a way, I don't really agree with this over-simplification. I think we all have the potential to be enlightened (buddha-nature?), but we obviously haven't made it there yet. I understand that enlightenment is a shedding of all the outer layers to get at the core. Like an onion that has many layers. The center of it all is enlightenment. The layers around this are attachments. So, we try to shed these layers to attain the enlightenment within. Still, I wouldn't say that the whole of a person is enlightened. If the whole of a person is enlightened, wouldn't that mean to say that attachments are also enlightenment?

For instance, a baseball isn't a rubber ball. It's a baseball. Deep within the baseball is a rubber ball. So, it has the potential to be a rubber ball. But it's still a baseball until you take everything off of it.

I'm just trying to figure out why people call enlightenment ordinary when it is extraordinary. Being extraordinary doesn't mean it is unattainable though. Having the potential isn't the same as having, right?

Just something I was thinking about. I think it's better to say enlightenment is simple, or basic. Simple can be extraordinary. Just look at history's geniuses who have the extraordinary ability to point out the obvious.
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Comments

  • TalismanTalisman Veteran Veteran
    You are correct. Not sure if I agree with the "onion" analogy, but everything else I think you are dead on. It drives me absolutely bonkers when someone says "just go with it," or "you're already enogihtened you just don't know it," or "enlightenment is just being." That doesnt make any sense.
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    You are correct. Not sure if I agree with the "onion" analogy, but everything else I think you are dead on. It drives me absolutely bonkers when someone says "just go with it," or "you're already enogihtened you just don't know it," or "enlightenment is just being." That doesnt make any sense.
    It was a sloppy analogy. A crude way of getting across what I was thinking.

    I guess I am not alone in my thinking. I can understand where the idea may have come from though. I believe that an enlightened person is 'just being', but they are completely fulfilled by just being. We obviously can't do that ordinarily. That's why we must walk the path to reach the point where we can do that.

    At first there is a goal then there is no goal. You can't just start at no goal though. It's like you cannot lose the goal if you never had the goal in the first place. You need to have it before you can lose it. :wtf:
  • ownerof1000oddsocksownerof1000oddsocks Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    One odd thing I find about life is that when I 'get' something new, I go: 'ah, that is so obvious' then I see it everywhere I go and realize a lot of other people 'got it' all along.

    The hard part is being able to see. The step between realization and not realizing is impregnable. There's a new thing out there right now, that no-one has thought of, and it's soo simple. I think to myself: 'how did they come to that realization. In the context of this forum, I suppose the answer is hard dedication to buddhist practice and seeking good knowledge.

  • edited July 2011
    The people who dont ..'just be...' are the ones who suffer.
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    I have never said that enlightenment is complicated or obscure. I did say it is not ordinary. It may be obvious, in your face, and seem difficult to obtain when in reality it isn't. But it's not ordinary because it is so simple. Ordinary life is complicated. That's why I say enlightenment is not ordinary.

    @buddhacoe
    I agree. Those who cannot 'just be...' suffer. That's why we meditate, to learn to 'just be...'.
  • taiyakitaiyaki Veteran Veteran
    i think about it this way. in the normal human being their energies are fragmented. they may be at times the buddha, showing wisdom and acts of compassion here and there, but on the whole they are more negative. meaning they are prone to anger, jealousy, fear, hatred, and ignorance.

    with seeing clearly comes the end to ignorance because wisdom is realized existentially. through seeing clearly that sets up the energy to be free from one's conditional grasping at say a personal ego. since the whole being isn't trying to create the impossible by asserting a dualistic reality onto a reality that isn't necessarily bounded by our concepts, there is tremendous energy. this energy now with concentration and mindfulness can be focused towards being a whole being, rather than a fragmented one. i suppose you could say that this is the beginning of a buddha's path. this is where one has a satori or an awakening from their dualistic mind into awareness/presence. one realizes that this awareness/presence always has been and always will be because it is the one thing that has been here watching unconditionally (and yes this is also empty).

    so gradually the new buddha would bring their awakening process to the heart. most people who awaken don't awaken fully as they awaken from the mind. when it comes to emotions the awakened beings grasp thus they have work to do. think of it as working out their karma. as the awakening and embodying enlightenment is a gradual process for most beings, but there are exception of course.

    so in all cases enlightenment is sudden meaning it is one experience that permanently/momentarily shifts your consciousness from being object centered to becoming free from the object. now one can come at this by years of training then suddenly they will have that shift and they may have a lot less of a time getting used to it. whereas someone might just wake up to it through trauma or just hearing the right words and bam, and they need years and years of therapy and help to make sense and to even learn to embody such awakening.

    but this is just the beginning because one can be lost in many many pot holes along the way. the higher you are the harder you fall. seeing clearly one must now penetrate the wisdom of the buddha and see what the buddha and with patience attain full buddhahood.

    awakening is so brutally ordinary yet it is the most extraordinary thing. just imagine not listening to your thoughts because you are just watching the mental objects come up and down. just imagine not attaching to emotions because you see them for what they are. just processes. but in turn by not attaching you feel more than you've ever felt before. emotions are magnified. feeling is magnified. but you can deal with it because nirvana is merely the natural state of being when one doesn't cling. and so the buddha can be totally in hell through samsara, yet be serene in nirvana by being.

    we miss this because simply we want something or we see it as something to achieve. it's really about getting your fragmented energies together and focusing them on the inner subjectivity. we cultivate that through being moral and practice. if we lack concentration then we practice that. if we lack mindfulness we practice that.

    some people are gifted in some areas, thus they don't have to practice. and some people just wake up without even having a
    shred of mindfulness or morality. so it's important to view buddhist practice/path as getting the soil ready for the seed to flower. some seeds flower in the shittiest of conditions.

    we work hard to get to simplicity. or just being here right now and just watching. all wisdom lies in just this.
    and there are those who are told once and in their sincerity just open up to it and try it fully without looking back.


    lol as you can tell i've done a lot of study in this. my goal is to get a real picture of this topic rather than something esoteric.
    enlightenment is all in your hands and is achievable. such is your natural state of being, but that being is clouded by fragmented energies and no clear direction.
  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran Veteran
    greed anger and ignorance are ordinary
  • genkakugenkaku Veteran Northampton, Mass. U.S.A. Veteran
    From the point of view of someone who never rode a bike, riding a bike is extraordinary and desirable. Intellectually and emotionally, 'enlightenment' is pretty extraordinary because it defies all intellectual and emotional limitations. But to someone who can ride a bike ... well, it's just time to ride when it's time to ride ... pretty neat, but not something to create a library around or light incense to or get your spiritual knickers in a twist about.

    Practice and ride, practice and ride.
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    i think about it this way. in the normal human being their energies are fragmented. they may be at times the buddha, showing wisdom and acts of compassion here and there, but on the whole they are more negative. meaning they are prone to anger, jealousy, fear, hatred, and ignorance.
    This is ordinary, normal, commonplace.
    Enlightenment is extraordinary because it is not the above ^^^
    From the point of view of someone who never rode a bike, riding a bike is extraordinary and desirable. Intellectually and emotionally, 'enlightenment' is pretty extraordinary because it defies all intellectual and emotional limitations. But to someone who can ride a bike ... well, it's just time to ride when it's time to ride ... pretty neat, but not something to create a library around or light incense to or get your spiritual knickers in a twist about.

    Practice and ride, practice and ride.
    This is similar to having a goal then no goal. Obviously, we desire enlightenment, but once we have it, we abandon desire. We will not escape samsara without the desire to be free.

    Before we know to ride, riding seems extraodrinary. After we learn to ride, it becomes ordinary. So from our position, enlightenment is extraordinary.

  • cazcaz Veteran United Kingdom Veteran
    This over simplification is from people who really want Buddhism to be something it isnt, I think it comes from a Zen concept of Buddhanature but seems to have been seriously taken the wrong way. We have to put effort into training our mind and practising meditation. We are obscured by delusion and if living in samsara is enlightenment its pretty shit. :)
  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran Veteran
    "The world can be explored; it is workable , wherever you go, whatever you do. But I would like to plant one basic seed in your mind. I feel that it is absolutely important to make the practice of meditation your source of strength, your source of basic intelligence. Please think about that. You could just sit down and do nothing. You should take pride in the fact that you have learned a very valuablel message. You actually can survive beautifully by doing nothing.
  • GuyCGuyC Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    Hi Caz,
    We are obscured by delusion and if living in samsara is enlightenment its pretty shit. :)
    Agreed.

    This is why the Arahants who had completed their task were like workers waiting for their wages (Th 1003, 606) - i.e. Pari-Nibbana.

    Enlightenment means that Pari-Nibbana is guaranteed at the end of this life. It doesn't mean that you can have your samsaric (poisoned) cake and eat it too. It means no more (poisoned) cake!

    Metta,

    Guy
  • zen_worldzen_world Veteran Veteran
    @Yishai

    You took my words and put it in your OP...I agree 100% with you...
  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran
    edited July 2011
    I have never said that enlightenment is complicated or obscure. I did say it is not ordinary. It may be obvious, in your face, and seem difficult to obtain when in reality it isn't. But it's not ordinary because it is so simple. Ordinary life is complicated. That's why I say enlightenment is not ordinary.
    That is what they mean when they say "ordinary". In this context, ordinary = simple. In this context, ordinary does not mean normal, since ignorance is the norm. A monk leads a very "ordinary" life AKA: down to earth, simple life. So technically, from a Zen perspective, it would be correct to say that it is both ordinary and extraordinary, at the same time. It's simply a matter of semantics. Taken in context, not adhering strictly to the dictionary definition of "ordinary". It means the same thing as simple, unencumbered, etc.

  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran Veteran
    good answer.
  • cazcaz Veteran United Kingdom Veteran
    Hi Caz,
    We are obscured by delusion and if living in samsara is enlightenment its pretty shit. :)
    Agreed.

    This is why the Arahants who had completed their task were like workers waiting for their wages (Th 1003, 606) - i.e. Pari-Nibbana.

    Enlightenment means that Pari-Nibbana is guaranteed at the end of this life. It doesn't mean that you can have your samsaric (poisoned) cake and eat it too. It means no more (poisoned) cake!

    Metta,

    Guy
    Depends which interpretation of parinivarna you follow Guy :)
  • GuyCGuyC Veteran Veteran
    Depends which interpretation of parinivarna you follow Guy :)
    How many interpretations are there?
  • CloudCloud Veteran Veteran
    Enlightenment is as ordinary as a species of dinosaur transforming into a species of bird.
  • cazcaz Veteran United Kingdom Veteran
    Depends which interpretation of parinivarna you follow Guy :)
    How many interpretations are there?

    Theravaden and Mahayana, The later beleives parinivarna as a ceasing of samsaric rebirth and dwelling in a pureland and the former seems to see it as just and extinguishment of consciousness TBMK.
  • thickpaperthickpaper Veteran Veteran
    @Yishai

    I think part of your position may rest on twisting up the "ordinary" with the "mundane". I agree that enlightenment cannot be ordinary, on statistical reasons alone, just as a four leaf clover is not ordinary.

    The more useful distinction I think is between mundane/nonmystical and supramundane/mystical.


    For many reasons I think Enlightenment is profoundly mundane.

    This possibility brings an understandable existential discord once it is apprehended.

    I have in the past been very attached to the idea that enlightenment is more than merely mundane. It's good to let go:)

  • @thickpaper

    I kind of think the mundane is mystical. My sense of that word, "mysticism" is that it has less to do with superstition and magic and more to do with the idea that mind precedes matter or that it plays a more fundamental role in the nature of reality than materialist rationalism assumes. Idealism/mysticism really shouldn't be completely off the table as an approach of looking at the world since the only thing you really can count on being real is mind. That's what we know for sure, as sentient beings, is capable of decoding the physical universe into something meaningful, at least to a subjective extent.
  • DaozenDaozen Veteran Veteran
    I think of it like this:

    Beginner has good instinct, low skill.
    Intermediate has better skill but loses instinct as they adjust to new ways.
    Master has mastered skill to an unconscious level and is also fully intuitive.

    In the same way, the end point of enlightenment is in some ways like the beginning, but it is not the same.



  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    As far as mundane vs. mystical goes. I think of something clever said was in Harry Potter 7 Pt. 2 after *****'s death. ***** speaks with -----.

    It's portrayed as almost like a crossing over experience.
    ***** asks ----- "Is this real or is it just all in my head?".
    ----- responds "Of course it is happening inside your head, *****, but why on earth should that mean that it's not real?"

    I think that's a good point. How can we deny someone else's reality when it is inside their head? It's one of the reasons I think science will come up short in this area until it can actually process exactly what the brain sees/thinks/perceives.
  • thickpaperthickpaper Veteran Veteran
    @thickpaper

    I kind of think the mundane is mystical. My sense of that word, "mysticism" is that it has less to do with superstition and magic and more to do with the idea that mind precedes matter or that it plays a more fundamental role in the nature of reality than materialist rationalism assumes.
    OK:) I think we have very different ideas of what mystical means then.


    >>>Idealism/mysticism really shouldn't be completely off the table as an approach of looking at the world since the only thing you really can count on being real is mind.


    Idealism and Mysticicism are very different concepts to me. One is philosophical and the other pertains to magic, etc. Again, we must differ in definitions.

    I cannot count on the mind as being real, the cogito becomes neutralised by emptiness. Nothing is any more real than anything else, things are true and clear or false and unclear, at least, to my mind.

    >>That's what we know for sure, as sentient beings, is capable of decoding the physical universe into something meaningful, at least to a subjective extent.

    I don't even think that we are entitled to know anything about about the physical universe as any more meaningful than an illusion, matrix, brains in vat etc.

    Shalom
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    Trying to follow:

    We can know things about the physical universe as it pertains to the physical universe as it pertains to us. Nothing more. The things of the universe have meaning only when applied to the universe. You can't separate the the knowing from the universe. That is why it is an illusion. Without the universe, the knowledge is empty. That is why the cogito is neutralized by emptiness?

    Metta, Amen, Salaam, Shalom :D
  • zenffzenff Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    ...
    I have seen people say that enlightenment is completely ordinary, that being enlightened is just 'living'. If this were true, then we wouldn't need to do anything to be enlightened...

    I am an ordinary guy. Does that mean I am enlightened; am I the Buddha?

    Yes, before measuring, comparing and naming, I am the Buddha.
    But when I evaluate myself and try to fit into (any) description of the Buddha, I am deluded.

    Our efforts to become enlightened are like “adding frost to snow”.
    We always want more; so certainly enlightenment must be far beyond the ordinary.


    imho


    :)
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran

    I am an ordinary guy. Does that mean I am enlightened; am I the Buddha?

    Yes, before measuring, comparing and naming, I am the Buddha.
    But when I evaluate myself and try to fit into (any) description of the Buddha, I am deluded.
    Does that mean non-buddhists are enlightened? They do not measure, compare and name Buddha. Or is it measuring, comparing, and naming anything?

    Enlightenment is starting to seem a lot like humility. "Once you think you have it, you've lost it." XD

  • Stating that enlightenment is ordinary is to deny the path. The correct view is the union of wisdom and method, therefore enlightenment is not ordinary.

    Enlightenment is anuttara-samyak-saṃbodhi, unsurpassed, perfect awakening.
  • zenffzenff Veteran Veteran
    @Yishai

    When we see through the ultimate delusion all lesser delusions should be obvious.

    Some people never go beyond being deluded with the crowd; being stuck in these “lesser” delusions so to speak.
    (Maybe they’re the ones who are ordinary. I won’t fight over the definition of a word.)

    I ‘m pretty sure there are people who don’t need formal Buddhist training or Buddhist education to realize it, without ever giving it a proper name.

    "Once you think you have it, you've lost it." Yes I agree.

    So how can we distinguish an “ordinary guy” from an “ordinary Buddha”?
    There’s a koan for you.

  • zenffzenff Veteran Veteran

    Enlightenment is anuttara-samyak-saṃbodhi, unsurpassed, perfect awakening.
    Okay, and what exactly is that?

  • Enlightenment is anuttara-samyak-saṃbodhi, unsurpassed, perfect awakening.
    Okay, and what exactly is that?
    Since we don't know yet, we need the path, therefore enlightenment is not "ordinary". "Ordinary" is whatever ordinary people believe truly exists. Genuine reality is free from extremes and beyond all thought and expression. Buddhism is not "ordinary" it is extraordinary.
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    Are you saying that enlightenment is supramundane then?
  • Awakening is the realization of genuine reality which is freedom from extremes beyond thought and expression. That is different from apparent reality, which is whatever ordinary people believe truly exists. Therefore awakening is not "ordinary". This is the proper view - unless we have the proper view our meditation will be incorrect.

    "Supramundane" has baggage since it implies original wisdom may be an object which exists.
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    My head hurts...

    But I think I understand what you are saying. Enlightenment is the discernment of the truth of reality. Ordinary people believe that their illusions are truth though. Therefore, Enlightenment is not ordinary.

    Enlightenment seems so overwhelming and amazing. The fact that we can discern the nature of all reality. Mind = blown. I guess it just now hit me. It's overwhelming and amazing but simple in act at the same time. I feel like it's sweeping leaves(illusions) off a gigantic floor (reality). I guess it makes sense that not everyone becomes enlightened then. It's not hard to sweep the floor, but it takes a lot of doing :) Better start now or keep going if you've started, eh?
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    Enlightenment is when one is *just being...*

    There are so many enlightened beings in the world, and they won't even know it ..and good for then!. Enlightenment isn't something one needs to understand. Trying to understand it will make all our heads ache!

    Some know what enlightenment is but can't explain it to others, some can explain it but one needs to either experience it themselves or just natually be enlightened to understand.

    The reason enlightenment is ordinary is because its someone who just lives everyday as it is..(Some enlightened ppl know there doing it and some don't).enlightenment doesn't have to be about gaining any new wisdom. Because its that which u gain. 'That u don't actually know anything so therefore just live life before its too late.

    For the people who are searching for it, I believe enlightenment is something that hits you for a second and you laugh at what u now know, which is you know absolutely f_cking nothing hahahah!!!

    Its amazing!

    Trying to know will f_ck you up...so just be!!!

    Everyone has this magical idea of what prince siddhartha would have been like after he gained enlightenment! When to be honest none of us don't know sh1t about what happened to him 2500 years ago.
    We can all read books, and go to sangha classes and take refuge and call ourselves buddhists and believe all the hear-say after 2500 years. Its all good stuff. But you need to wake up yourself and realize your own truth. And those in search for enlightenment and thinks its a huge amazing experience, I feel sorry for them and hope they can quickly understand what its all about. That's why I always say that people who are not just being* are the ones who suffer most. (Don't worry too much about rebirth and ending cylcles blar blar blar) just live for the moment and be well!
    Wish everyone the best!































  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    @zenmyste

    You sound like a motivational speaker. "Your best life, now!" :nyah:

    I guess we'll know enlightenment when we feel liberated. I still don't feel that way endlessly, but I have felt liberated a few times in my life for short periods of time. I know the feeling you are talking about. Just being happy to be alive. It's a good feeling. But it quickly fades, which is why I don't think it's enlightenment.

    It is one thing to go with the flow and 'just be'. It is another to be fulfilled by it.
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    whos to say buddha was fulfilled??
    Nothing was written about buddha until at least 300 years AFTER his death.
    So again its just all hear-say..This enlightenment definition might be incorrect,
    We just dont know and never will. we are all human so of course we are gonna suffer in life and we will not be fully fullfilled. This is exactly what buddha was saying originally.

    What if buddhas teachings were really saying that life is suffering and we are never gonna be fullfilled in life, but accepting and understand this will ease our suffering. but then over many years its all been changed to buddha attained full enlightenment and its so magical that he has ended all suffering and bebirth and etc etc etc....you see what im getting at? we just dont know for sure what buddha taught and what he said enlightenment is. But DEEP down you know YOU. so the secret is concentrating on only you. and finding a way that eases your suffering whilst your hear on earth. If buddhism helps you then great. (its helped me alot)(i believe buddha was just a teacher and not someone who attained a magical enlightenment experience) but one day you might wake up and think ''ahhh ive got it''' and laugh. for you will truely understand yourself and how you can end your mental suffering. and you'll prob find what you come up with is very ordinary. x hence enlightenment is ordinary x
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    I guess the only way I can know is to go sit down and shut up. Lol.
  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    @zenmyste

    If we cannot follow the "hear-say" we cannot follow Buddhism since that is what Buddhism is pretty much based on. Despite it being 300 years after his death, he had a large following, and many followers means that there were many with knowledge who would correct any inaccuracies passed down to the next generation.

    Otherwise, we are simply following our own religion, which seems to be what you are advocating in the stead of Buddhism. After all, Buddhism teaches the 4NT and the 8FP which explicitly talk about the cessation of suffering and the method to doing so.

    Buddhism does more than ease our suffering, it ends it. Therefore, enlightenment (the awakening) would logically entail the cessation of suffering. Not just coping with it.
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    @zenmyste

    Buddhism does more than ease our suffering, it ends it.
    How do *you* know it ENDS it??
  • The third noble truth.
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    Buddhist monks who have been practising for YEARS AND YEARS still say they suffer. So infact Buddhism doesnt END our suffering at all. If it did, everyone who practiced buddhism wouldnt suffer, yet somehow everyone still does.
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    The third noble truth.
    YET everyone who practice still suffer?

    and you still havent answered the question which was: how do you *know*??
    do you not suffer? if yes, then how do you know buddhism ends all suffering???
  • Realized beings don't suffer. I have faith in the third noble truth because I have faith in in the three jewels as places of refuge and faith in my guru.



  • YishaiYishai Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    @zenmyste

    how do you *know* that the cessation of suffering isn't possible? There is conviction and faith in both sides of this argument. I guess it's best to just say "we don't know". However, it doesn't hurt that we make it our goal to stop experiencing dukkha. Just don't become attached that idea. We have a goal but practice with no goal.

    Welcome to faith in religion. If I only practice what I currently know, there is no way to grow. Only by challenging myself with new ideas do I change. This is why I do not practice complacency.
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    Hey im all for practising buddhism. I do follow the 8 fold path myself. i just dont personally think it ends all suffering. (it helps yes)
    And i dont like the word faith because faith is beliving in something which we will never know the truth. therefore i do practice buddhism but not because its gonna lead me anywhere but because its very basic common sense things which everyone should know, like the 5 precepts, even non buddhists should know these..dont kill, steal...etc etc

    But anyway when you asked me 'how do i know that the cessation of suffering isnt possible? im not saying it fully isnt. but like you said the secret is not to get attached to the idea that buddhism will definitely help because it might not help some people.
    And also, like i said there are SO SO SO SO many practising buddhists that havent acheieved anything. I went to thailand last year for a month and stayed with buddhist monks. They told me themselves that they are not yet enlightened. when i asked them 'why are you not enlightened after all this time practising? they said 'because we still suffer like every other human' so after spending time with them i considered long and hard if it is even possible to end our suffering. Or is this something we must just accept about life. life is suffering and then death might be our peace.
    I can honestly tell you that since having this attitude that 'f*ck it, life is suffering at times, i may aswell accept it' i have suffered LESS than when i tryed to end suffering through buddhism.
  • taiyakitaiyaki Veteran Veteran
    acceptance is the key.

    shh don't tell anyone.
  • TalismanTalisman Veteran Veteran
    @zenmyste

    If you do not take refuge in the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha how could you say that you are Buddhist? That doesn't make any sense. If you don't believe that the Buddha attained complete, self-attained, perfect enlightenment, thus severing all bonds to rebirth and Dukkha, then good for you, but that is what taking refuge in the Buddha means.

    If you feel satisfied picking and choosing what you want to believe because you don't have the strength of conviciton to commit yourself wholeheatedly to the monumental task of achieving enlightenment, then that's your poragative. The reason that there are monks who suffer is because everyone suffers. How many of the monks you have met are Arhats?

    When you disrespect or slander the 3 jewels you disrespect and slander many devoted and faithful and compassionate Buddhist practitioners the world over. Are you the type of person who likes to throw it in Christians face that there is no God just to boost your own ego and put them down? Maybe you should re-evaluate your understanding of the Dharma and think before you start bashing thousands of years of contemplation and study by people wiser and more intelligent than you.
  • zenmystezenmyste Veteran Veteran
    edited July 2011
    ''Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it'' ~ Buddha ~

    If Buddha did exist and whether he achieved enlightenment OR not it does not matter. Taking refuge does not matter. He was an amzing teacher, however There are many things in buddhism today, that i dont fully agree with. And im sure buddha himself would understand this.
  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran Veteran
    I didn't hear any disrespect of the 3 jewels. I heard someone speaking his/her mind. There might not indeed be any god OR any cessation. You have to look at the context and tone of a conversation to know if pointing out that fact is due to ego. And in my judgement that is not occuring.
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