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A definition of Enlightenment

opiumpoetryopiumpoetry Delaware, Ohio, USA Explorer

Enlightenment is when you devote your life to helping the poor, the sick and the weak. Anyone care for a friendly debate on this?

Bunks

Comments

  • FosdickFosdick in its eye are mirrored far off mountains Alaska, USA Veteran

    Mais non - enlightenment is when you devote your life to helping the environment, the natural world and the non-humans. Or is that the same thing, said differently?

    opiumpoetry
  • 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

    Enlightenment is when you don't need to debate. Actions speak louder than words. Don't say. Do.

    FoibleFullopiumpoetry
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    A definition of Enlightenment

    Before Enlightenment chop wood ...fetch water...After Enlightenment chop wood... fetch water....

    An oldie but goodie :)

    FoibleFullopiumpoetry
  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    Not all enlightened people start helping the poor, the sick and the weak. Ikkyū was abbot of a monastery in Japan, Ajahn Chah was one in Thailand, Jiddu Krishnamurti gave lectures, Gurdjieff had his little commune, Hotei played with children.

    In fact I’m hard pressed to come up with an example of an enlightened man who did start helping the poor and needy.

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @Kerome said:

    In fact I’m hard pressed to come up with an example of an enlightened man who did start helping the poor and needy.

    Jesus Christ ? :)

    Kerome
  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited April 22

    @Shoshin said:

    @Kerome said:

    In fact I’m hard pressed to come up with an example of an enlightened man who did start helping the poor and needy.

    Jesus Christ ? :)

    Good spot, there...

  • Enlightenment is being awake to the true nature of reality and how the mind works. It is compassion that compels one to helping others. Enlightenment requires lucid thinking and compassion is FEELING and inner knowing. We know intuitively as organic spirit that every sentient being is connected and that compassion feels better than causing suffering. And each person is ultimately responsible for their own suffering. The most helpful we can be is to not CAUSE suffering for others. I can try to help someone through the loss of their child for example, but ultimately they have to release the mental attachment to the illusory loss. Nothing is really possessed in the first place but that is difficult to integrate when you are experiencing the loss of a loved one. We attach to their personality, their appearance and memories of their interactions with us. But all of that is temporary illusion. This is enlightenment. Compassion is just being there for them until they let go.

  • "In fact I’m hard pressed to come up with an example of an enlightened man who did start helping the poor and needy."

    Siddhartha the Buddha? Strange that is not the first answer here.

    "Once the Buddha and Ananda visited a monastery where a monk was suffering from a contagious disease. The poor man lay in a mess with no one looking after him. The Buddha himself washed the sick monk and placed him on a new bed. Afterwards, he admonished the other monks. "Monks, you have neither mother nor father to look after you. If you do not look after each other, who will look after you? Whoever serves the sick and suffering, serves me."

    The truth is that most enlightened beings are not in a position to help people with money or medicines because they opt out of the luxuries of the world and have very little themselves. Their gift is their wisdom. But that is not really what compassion is about. We cannot heal everyone or give everyone money. People offer their services to others all over the world. We don't know everyone or how enlightened they are.

    Ghandi, Jesus, Mooji, Hazrat Babajan, Osho mothers, fathers, nuns, monks etc.

    opiumpoetry
  • howhow Veteran Veteran

    enlightenment = selflessness.

    FosdickShoshinlobster
  • FoibleFullFoibleFull Canada Veteran

    Enlightenment is when you live fully open to THIS moment and all it comprises, and are not pushed by your thoughts or emotions ... it is both wisdom and compassion. Enlightenment is not contained in what you do, but in how you do it. As "how" has said above my comment, "enlightenment =selflessness. Not that sense of self ceases, but we see it for what it is, and what it is not.

    “Everything is always changing. If you relax into this truth, that is Enlightenment. If you resist, this is samsara (suffering).” Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse, “What Makes You (Not) a Buddhist”

    lobster
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