Tolerance for other religions

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 1:25 pm

Devin666 wrote:So basically every institution (or in many cases) has some spirit that feels that the whole thing is its property and supports it or whatever? I am also wondering why the dkor bdag would keep one poor as long as one has debt, what is the connection there? Should it not try to help or is dkor bdag more like a group energy or so? Is it an individual thinking spirit?
Because you have a debt, it depletes your prosperity. A dkor bdag is a kind of individual entity associated with public institutions like monasteries, sometimes they even have names. Generally however, they do not.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

MiphamFan
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by MiphamFan » Sun Aug 23, 2015 2:33 pm

Malcolm, BTW what about offerings to Indo-European gods? Ancient Greeks and Indians both sacrificed animals before eating them. Still Indra/Zeus is a deva, not a preta.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 2:34 pm

I'm just going to throw myself on the fire here...

When having an interfaith dialog, one can either focus on the differences between the paths or the similarities. If one focuses on the differences, the conversation will be about nothing but differences, and that's fine. But if one focuses on similarities, and those similarities may only be "similar" in that they reflect the other persons interests, one has a point of connection. A point of connection is more important than an ocean of differences if one wants to acknowledge and nurture some one's interest in dharma. Not every difference and confusion needs to be addressed at once. So generally the approach to real interfaith dialog is to find common ground on a couple points and share there.

So here we have a Muslim with a serious interest in Buddhism.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 2:44 pm

MiphamFan wrote:Malcolm, BTW what about offerings to Indo-European gods? Ancient Greeks and Indians both sacrificed animals before eating them. Still Indra/Zeus is a deva, not a preta.
One, are you quite sure that Indra and Zeus are the same entity? Two, are you sure Zeus is a deva?
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 2:46 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:I'm just going to throw myself on the fire here...

When having an interfaith dialog, one can either focus on the differences between the paths or the similarities. If one focuses on the differences, the conversation will be about nothing but differences, and that's fine. But if one focuses on similarities, and those similarities may only be "similar" in that they reflect the other persons interests, one has a point of connection. A point of connection is more important than an ocean of differences if one wants to acknowledge and nurture some one's interest in dharma. Not every difference and confusion needs to be addressed at once. So generally the approach to real interfaith dialog is to find common ground on a couple points and share there.

So here we have a Muslim with a serious interest in Buddhism.
If a non-Buddhist person is interested in the Dharma, that is great. But in order to understand what Dharma is they have to understand first the differences between the Dharma and the religion they are currently following.

Otherwise, as the Dalai Lama said of Christians interested in emptiness in Tucson in 2005, "It is none of their business."
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 2:59 pm

I've watced my teachers do interfaith dialog, some of them for decades. They all start with common ground, not differences. When the bridges are strong then differenes can be dealt with. From what I can tell many American Buddhists have theistic ideas from their Christian upbringing floating around their dharma, so I'm with you on making the distinctions clear. But one never gets there without making strong bridges with common ground.
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:I'm just going to throw myself on the fire here...

When having an interfaith dialog, one can either focus on the differences between the paths or the similarities. If one focuses on the differences, the conversation will be about nothing but differences, and that's fine. But if one focuses on similarities, and those similarities may only be "similar" in that they reflect the other persons interests, one has a point of connection. A point of connection is more important than an ocean of differences if one wants to acknowledge and nurture some one's interest in dharma. Not every difference and confusion needs to be addressed at once. So generally the approach to real interfaith dialog is to find common ground on a couple points and share there.

So here we have a Muslim with a serious interest in Buddhism.
If a non-Buddhist person is interested in the Dharma, that is great. But in order to understand what Dharma is they have to understand first the differences between the Dharma and the religion they are currently following.

Otherwise, as the Dalai Lama said of Christians interested in emptiness in Tucson in 2005, "It is none of their business."

MiphamFan
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by MiphamFan » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:02 pm

Malcolm wrote:
MiphamFan wrote:Malcolm, BTW what about offerings to Indo-European gods? Ancient Greeks and Indians both sacrificed animals before eating them. Still Indra/Zeus is a deva, not a preta.
One, are you quite sure that Indra and Zeus are the same entity? Two, are you sure Zeus is a deva?
So if I became a nomad, farmer or something who has to kill animals at least occasionally, I should just feel bad about it?

I remember reading in Perfect Conduct that killing animals doesn't break the vow to avoid killing completely, although it should be confessed.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:07 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:I've watced my teachers do interfaith dialog, some of them for decades.
"Interfaith" assumes we are just trying to communicate with others to live in a harmonious way. Then we say nice things and complement each other on our mutual qualities.

Its all bullshit of course, because everyone just goes back to criticizing each other and thinking the other is deluded once everyone returns to their temple, mosque, church or synagogue. This is how samsara is.

Educating is different. If someone wants to be educated, then they have to listen. If people have the karmic fortune to meet Buddhadharma, they will. This is why we do not convert, or bother to evangelize. We don't have a mission. People are responsible for themselves. No one is going to save them. The universe does not care and there is no all-powerful god who cares either.
Last edited by Malcolm on Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:11 pm

MiphamFan wrote: So if I became a nomad, farmer or something who has to kill animals at least occasionally, I should just feel bad about it?

I remember reading in Perfect Conduct that killing animals doesn't break the vow to avoid killing completely, although it should be confessed.
Correct, you feel bad about it. For example, one of the reasons for dgu gtor is to apologize and confess all negativities done during the past year, especially killing cattle and sheep or hunting.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:13 pm

This is their instruction for bringing people to the dharma when people express interest. That's all. Nothing more, nothing less. Start with common ground, cultivate that, introduce some related practices-- move on from there. People generally pick up a Buddhist practice, or take some useful things back to their own religion.
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:I've watced my teachers do interfaith dialog, some of them for decades.
"Interfaith" assumes we are just trying to communicate with others to live in a harmonious way. Then we say nice things and complement each other on our mutual qualities.

Its all bullshit of course, because everyone just goes back to criticizing each other and thinking the other is deluded once everyone returns to their temple, mosque, church or synagogue. This is how samsara is.

Educating is different. If someone wants to be educated, then they have to listen. If people have the karmic fortune to meet Buddhadharma, they will. This is why we do not convert, or bother to evangelize.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:15 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:This is their instruction for bringing people to the dharma when people express interest. That's all. Nothing more, nothing less. Start with common ground, cultivate that, introduce some related practices-- move on from there. People generally pick up a Buddhist practice, or take some useful things back to their own religion.
If someone wants to learn Buddhist practice, they have to become a Buddhist. Giving Tara mantras to Christians is useless.

There is no such thing as a Hindu/Buddhist; Muslim/Buddhist; Christian/Buddhist. etc. You either take refuge in the Three Jewels or you don't. It is really simple. And I don't mean getting a groovy Tibetan/Chinese/Pali/Japanese name and so on. If you want to follow the Buddha's path, this means you have understood something is lacking in the path you follow. If you think the path you follow is perfect and complete, then there is no need for you to follow Buddha's path, or borrow anything from it.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:20 pm

Well, this instruction seems to work.

The common ground obviously isn't vajrayana. The point of contact is generally shamatha and the four immeasurables.
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:This is their instruction for bringing people to the dharma when people express interest. That's all. Nothing more, nothing less. Start with common ground, cultivate that, introduce some related practices-- move on from there. People generally pick up a Buddhist practice, or take some useful things back to their own religion.
If someone wants to learn Buddhist practice, they have to become a Buddhist. Giving Tara mantras to Christians is useless.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:23 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:Well, this instruction seems to work.

The common ground obviously isn't vajrayana. The point of contact is generally shamatha and the four immeasurables.
]

These things are not Buddhist. They are shared in common with Hinduism already.

If people want to meditate, and they are theistically inclined, I send them to Yoga. I have no interest in converting, modifying or conditioning anyone.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:29 pm

Not everything is a rigorous philosophical point.

These are people who have done enough research, generally as Christians, to come to a Buddhist center to learn about these things, or to reach out to a Buddhist in the community like myself, to ask about these things.

Calming the mind and generating love and compassion is a natural common groud between Christianity and Buddhism.

When people see the efficacy of the practices and see how their minds change, they generally explore deeper. Some are all in because going to church did nothing for them. Then working between all the differences between the paths becomes a reality.
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:Well, this instruction seems to work.

The common ground obviously isn't vajrayana. The point of contact is generally shamatha and the four immeasurables.
]

These things are not Buddhist. They are shared in common with Hinduism already.

If people want to meditate, and they are theistically inclined, I send them to Yoga. I have no interest in converting anyone.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:35 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:
These are people who have done enough research, generally as Christians, to come to a Buddhist center to learn about these things, or to reach out to a Buddhist in the community like myself, to ask about these things.
I generally tell them what HHDL says, they should stay Christians. They should explore their own tradition more deeply.
Calming the mind and generating love and compassion is a natural common groud between Christianity and Buddhism.
Right, but Christians don't need Buddhism to be calm and generate love and compassion, nor do Muslims, or Hindus and so on.

If your mind is calm because you have taken Jesus as your personal savior and you generate compassion and love out of Christian exercises, fantastic. We can all agree that being calm, loving and compassionate is a good thing.

Interfaith gatherings, like peace conferences, don't change anything.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:41 pm

Well, this is how I became a Buddhist 25 years ago. I reached out in an interfaith dialog and found some common ground with a Buddhist, and then sought out formal Buddhist training with the same lama.
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:
These are people who have done enough research, generally as Christians, to come to a Buddhist center to learn about these things, or to reach out to a Buddhist in the community like myself, to ask about these things.
I generally tell them what HHDL says, they should stay Christians. They should explore their own tradition more deeply.
Calming the mind and generating love and compassion is a natural common groud between Christianity and Buddhism.
Right, but Christians don't need Buddhism to be calm and generate love and compassion, nor to Muslims, or Hindus and so on.

If your mind is calm because you have taken Jesus as your personal savior and you generate compassion and love out of Christian exercises, fantastic. We can all agree that being calm, loving and compassionate is a good thing.

Interfaith gatherings, like peace conferences, don't change anything.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:44 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:Well, this is how I became a Buddhist 25 years ago. I reached out in an interfaith dialog and found some common ground with a Buddhist, and then sought out formal Buddhist training with the same lama.

Yes, because you had a strong karmic connection with Dharma from a past life, specifically Dzogchen teachings, so you reconnected with the Dharma in this life. That, my friend, is the only way it works.

This is why I have the six syllables in my sig, because anyone who sees them creates a positive cause to connect with the Dharma in a future life, specifically Dzogchen teachings.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:48 pm

Ya. And I think it's the same with people I'm describing. One never knows until one explores the common ground.

Maybe it's the same with lostitude. Who knows?
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:Well, this is how I became a Buddhist 25 years ago. I reached out in an interfaith dialog and found some common ground with a Buddhist, and then sought out formal Buddhist training with the same lama.

Yes, because you had a strong karmic connection with Dharma from a past life, specifically Dzogchen teachings, so you reconnected with the Dharma in this life. That, my friend, is the only way it works.

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Malcolm
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Malcolm » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:56 pm

Urgyen Dorje wrote:Ya. And I think it's the same with people I'm describing. One never knows until one explores the common ground.
They will find the Dharma with you or without you. It is inevitable.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


—Treasury of the Supreme Vehicle, Longchenpa.

Urgyen Dorje
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Re: Tolerance for other religions

Post by Urgyen Dorje » Sun Aug 23, 2015 4:02 pm

Yep. It's obviously all karma. Sometimes we share that with people, sometimes we don't. I wouldn't say we're responsibile for bringing people to the dharma or driving them away, that is their karma and their merit, but what we can be responsible for is putting a few left turns in their journey. Then again, my experience is biased on doing this in the hinterlands.
Malcolm wrote:
Urgyen Dorje wrote:Ya. And I think it's the same with people I'm describing. One never knows until one explores the common ground.
They will find the Dharma with you or without you. It is inevitable.

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