Abandoning Buddhism, What Now?

Discuss your personal experience with the Dharma here. How has it enriched your life? What challenges does it present?

Abandoning Buddhism, What Now?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:05 am

ovi wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
ovi wrote:Aren't we supposed to liberate beings from suffering, in accordance with their current abilities? Is there any point to try to preserve something called a Dharma that doesn't liberate people?

Ovi, would you like to start a new thread? I would be interested in contributing to this topic.

I would be happy to contribute constructively to any such thread, I've posted a few replies on the Buddhist Modernism one, but I've stopped doing so as I would rather practice the Dharma than continue to engage in something that is not meant to help anyone, but to win over an argument.

I would like to see the generation of a new dharma that derives from the Buddhadharma but does not attempt to challenge, change or replace any of the traditional forms. Any discussion that leads in this direction is a means to this end.

It is not about winning arguments. I don't even try.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby ovi » Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:40 am

Malcolm wrote:
You can't even get people to agree on a brand.

But when you present a brand, you need to include all the ingredients on the label so people may make intelligent, informed choices about what they are buying. You certainly don't sell something to someone saying, well, this tastes good, but ignore the ingredients, they are not important, since they might have a nut allergy and go into anaphylactic shock.

Of course not. The ingredients have been selected scientifically so that they don't lead to such outcome!
dharmagoat wrote:I would like to see the generation of a new dharma that derives from the Buddhadharma but does not attempt to challenge, change or replace any of the traditional forms. Any discussion that leads in this direction is a means to this end.

It is not about winning arguments. I don't even try.

Can you elaborate? Personally, I don't believe in rebirth, I don't think this means abandoning the teaching, I have decided from the beginning of my practice that I will not renounce Buddhism because of my failure to accept the notion, it no longer matters to me. I do think that not discussing the issue of rebirth is useful for just about everybody I would currently explain the teaching to (they're all atheists), but as for my own practice, I don't avoid teachings which make use of it, the best books are the old ones anyway.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:49 am

dharmagoat wrote:I would like to see the generation of a new dharma that derives from the Buddhadharma but does not attempt to challenge, change or replace any of the traditional forms. Any discussion that leads in this direction is a means to this end.


There are entire forums devoted to that already.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby smcj » Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:51 am

Can you elaborate? Personally, I don't believe in rebirth, I don't think this means abandoning the teaching, I have decided from the beginning of my practice that I will not renounce Buddhism because of my failure to accept the notion, it no longer matters to me. I do think that not discussing the issue of rebirth is useful for just about everybody I would currently explain the teaching to (they're all atheists), but as for my own practice, I don't avoid teachings which make use of it, the best books are the old ones anyway.

That sounds like a completely reasonable position to me.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby ovi » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:03 am

I think that to create a new Dharma that leads others to enlightenment can only be done after attaining enlightenment ourselves. However, it might be useful to have a thread about scientific reasoning on the Dharma, as something extra to help increase one's understanding on the matter.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Adi » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:10 am

I'd forgotten until someone recently reminded me, but Voltaire, like Hume, seems to have been onto things without every hearing Dharma.

After all, it is no more surprising to be born twice than it is to be born once.
--Voltaire
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:30 am

ovi wrote:Personally, I don't believe in rebirth, I don't think this means abandoning the teaching, I have decided from the beginning of my practice that I will not renounce Buddhism because of my failure to accept the notion, it no longer matters to me.

Malcolm quite rightly informs us that if we do not accept literal rebirth, we do not fully accept the Buddha's teachings. We only do lip-service by identifying as Buddhists.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:36 am

Malcolm wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:I would like to see the generation of a new dharma that derives from the Buddhadharma but does not attempt to challenge, change or replace any of the traditional forms. Any discussion that leads in this direction is a means to this end.

There are entire forums devoted to that already.

Is there any harm in discussing it here too?

This is the forum that I know, and the one that knows me best.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Adi » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:41 am

dharmagoat wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:I would like to see the generation of a new dharma that derives from the Buddhadharma but does not attempt to challenge, change or replace any of the traditional forms. Any discussion that leads in this direction is a means to this end.

There are entire forums devoted to that already.

Is there any harm in discussing it here too?

This is the forum that I know, and the one that knows me best.


Since you are a person who has renounced Buddhism and revoke their refuge vows, I'd say yes, there could be quite a bit of harm possible.

Besides that, though, if those kinds of profound changes have come about then those other forums are surely a better place to find those of like mind who share the same goal.

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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:46 am

ovi wrote:I think that to create a new Dharma that leads others to enlightenment can only be done after attaining enlightenment ourselves. However, it might be useful to have a thread about scientific reasoning on the Dharma, as something extra to help increase one's understanding on the matter.

No one person would be responsible for it. It would be dependent on a groundswell of support.

Maybe an enlightened teacher, hearing our plight, might lend a helping hand.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:54 am

Adi wrote:Since you are a person who has renounced Buddhism and revoke their refuge vows, I'd say yes, there could be quite a bit of harm possible.

The alternative would be to not have been upfront about my relationship with Buddhism.

Adi wrote:Besides that, though, if those kinds of profound changes have come about then those other forums are surely a better place to find those of like mind who share the same goal.

No profound changes, just a gradual progression.

I am actually primarily interested in what like-minded Buddhists can contribute to the idea. I won't find that on a non-Buddhist forum.
Last edited by dharmagoat on Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Adi » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:04 am

dharmagoat wrote:
Adi wrote:Since you are a person who has renounced Buddhism and revoke their refuge vows, I'd say yes, there could be quite a bit of harm possible.

The alternative would be to not have been upfront about my relationship with Buddhism.

Adi wrote:Besides that, though, if those kinds of profound changes have come about then those other forums are surely a better place to find those of like mind who share the same goal.

No profound changes, just a gradual progression.

I am actually primarily interested in what like-minded Buddhists have to contribute to the idea. I won't find that on a non-Buddhist forum.


You'd probably have to ask the site owners/mods then since "Dharma Wheel is an environment for the discussion of Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism" and "This is not a "comparative religion site", it is a site to learn and discuss the Buddha's teachings without animosity. In support of this:...Proselyting/evangelizing other paths which includes for example arguing some other path is superior to the Buddhist path is not allowed."

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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:07 am

dharmagoat wrote:
Adi wrote:Since you are a person who has renounced Buddhism and revoke their refuge vows, I'd say yes, there could be quite a bit of harm possible.

The alternative would be to not have been upfront about my relationship with Buddhism.

Adi wrote:Besides that, though, if those kinds of profound changes have come about then those other forums are surely a better place to find those of like mind who share the same goal.

No profound changes, just a gradual progression.

I am actually primarily interested in what like-minded Buddhists can contribute to the idea. I won't find that on a non-Buddhist forum.


As I said, there are forums like the Secular Buddhist forum where you will find people of similar ideas.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:19 am

Adi wrote:You'd probably have to ask the site owners/mods then since "Dharma Wheel is an environment for the discussion of Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism" and "This is not a "comparative religion site", it is a site to learn and discuss the Buddha's teachings without animosity. In support of this:...Proselyting/evangelizing other paths which includes for example arguing some other path is superior to the Buddhist path is not allowed."

I think you misunderstand the topic of discussion I am proposing.

I am interested in discussing the issues faced by Buddhists (and ex-Buddhists) like myself who are struggling to engage with Buddhism in its existing forms, but are not interested in rejecting the teachings of the Buddha. The discussion may provide an insight into what form a new dharma derived from the Buddhadharma might take, but it would be entirely speculative.
Last edited by dharmagoat on Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:20 am

Malcolm wrote:As I said, there are forums like the Secular Buddhist forum where you will find people of similar ideas.

Thanks for the tip. I will check it out.

Only one concern: what if the traditional Buddhist standpoint is under-represented?
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:27 am

dharmagoat wrote:
I am interested in discussing the issues faced by Buddhists (and ex-Buddhists) like myself who are struggling to engage with Buddhism in its existing forms, but are not interested in rejecting the teachings of the Buddha. The discussion may provide an insight into what form a new dharma derived from the Buddhadharma might take, but it would be entirely speculative.


It is pretty hard to reject birth and not reject the Buddha's teaching, since the very idea of right view is predicated on accepting rebirth.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:27 am

dharmagoat wrote:
Only one concern: what if the traditional Buddhist standpoint is under-represented?


Oh, completely.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
User avatar
Malcolm
 
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby Adi » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:28 am

dharmagoat wrote:
Malcolm wrote:As I said, there are forums like the Secular Buddhist forum where you will find people of similar ideas.

Thanks for the tip. I will check it out.

Only one concern: what if the traditional Buddhist standpoint is under-represented?


Then you can make up for it. :)
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:28 am

Malcolm wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
Only one concern: what if the traditional Buddhist standpoint is under-represented?

Oh, completely.

Then what use would a discussion like that be?
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Re: Is Rebirth Unscientific?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:31 am

Malcolm wrote:It is pretty hard to reject birth and not reject the Buddha's teaching, since the very idea of right view is predicated on accepting rebirth.

Yes, but non-accepting is not the same as rejecting. I don't reject rebirth in favour of another belief.
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