Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

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Sönam
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Sönam » Thu Aug 28, 2014 8:28 am

M.G. wrote:
Hieros Gamos wrote:
M.G. wrote:I think a big part of the question comes down to whether or not one believes enlightenment manifests outside of Buddhist lineages or not.
Maybe I need liberation from Buddha but love from Jesus.
I suppose it comes down to what one considers "worldly gods."
Enlightenment is a fantasy ... cessation of suffering is what Buddha told. And by the way, Buddha won't "give you" liberation.

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Malcolm
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 1:34 pm

Dan74 wrote: OK, for me this thread was about using non-Buddhist methods in with Buddhist methods, not following two religions. I gave some examples of folks who did follow Buddhism as well as Christianity and it might be worth giving them a look, but this is not something I identify with, nor have I given it any attention so far.
It is axiomatically impossible to be both a Christian, in the sense of accepting Jesus as your lord and savior, and a Buddhist.
On the other hand, what I've said in this thread is simply that various aspects of other traditions (and for that matter psychology, etc) can be helpful on our path to liberation.
For example?
Whether or not one attends the mass, taking to heart Jesus's teachings and being inspired by his example, is following aspects of Christianity, though one may not call oneself a Christian, nor accept Jesus as lord and saviour.
That's a stretch.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Mkoll » Thu Aug 28, 2014 1:53 pm

Dan74 wrote:On the other hand, what I've said in this thread is simply that various aspects of other traditions (and for that matter psychology, etc) can be helpful on our path to liberation.
Might be helpful for some people for a period of time, but ultimately they're unnecessary.

IMHO, if the Dhamma is found to be so inadequate and lacking that a person has to look elsewhere for spiritual teachings or teachings concerning their own mind, there is something wrong.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Sönam » Thu Aug 28, 2014 2:33 pm

As far as Buddha's teaching is about cessation of suffering, it is the only dharma doing so ... and it cannot be compared to any other dharma. Doing so is a fallacy.

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Karma Dorje » Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:22 pm

Sönam wrote:As far as Buddha's teaching is about cessation of suffering, it is the only dharma doing so ... and it cannot be compared to any other dharma. Doing so is a fallacy.
I think much too much is made of doctrine. Any symbol system can be used by a siddha to wake people up, including Christianity. It's just that some are more direct than others and some (like Christianity) put a lot of unnecessary doctrinal obstacles in the way.

It is certainly not a fallacy to compare Buddhist dharma with other very similar systems like ajātivāda advaita vedanta, or better yet to practice either or both. Everyone likes to think they have a monopoly on Truth. It creates a lot of unnecessary division.
"Although my view is higher than the sky, My respect for the cause and effect of actions is as fine as grains of flour."
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:28 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
Sönam wrote:As far as Buddha's teaching is about cessation of suffering, it is the only dharma doing so ... and it cannot be compared to any other dharma. Doing so is a fallacy.
I think much too much is made of doctrine. Any symbol system can be used by a siddha to wake people up, including Christianity. It's just that some are more direct than others and some (like Christianity) put a lot of unnecessary doctrinal obstacles in the way.

It is certainly not a fallacy to compare Buddhist dharma with other very similar systems like ajātivāda advaita vedanta, or better yet to practice either or both. Everyone likes to think they have a monopoly on Truth. It creates a lot of unnecessary division.
Ajātivāda was borrowed from Mahdyamaka into Advaita by Gaudapada.

But since it is not grounded in dependent origination, even Gaudapada's presentation misses the point.

Anyway, as you and I have discussed before, I do not think that the various liberations bandied about by this and that school are even commensurate with one another. That is to say, I don't think non-Buddhists and so on are necessarily in the same mountain range as Buddhadharma, much less climbing the same mountain.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Anders » Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:34 pm

Mkoll wrote:
Dan74 wrote:On the other hand, what I've said in this thread is simply that various aspects of other traditions (and for that matter psychology, etc) can be helpful on our path to liberation.
Might be helpful for some people for a period of time, but ultimately they're unnecessary.

IMHO, if the Dhamma is found to be so inadequate and lacking that a person has to look elsewhere for spiritual teachings or teachings concerning their own mind, there is something wrong.
Or maybe there is not.

Human minds seem as variegated as anything I've met. There is no accounting for what grabs the heart and puts the mind to work. If a person learns to love and give, to surrender and trust through the vehicle of christianity and then pops over to Buddhism and swiftly attains results thanks to his accumulated roots of goodness then those endeavours are obviously not unnecessary. On the contrary, it would only be appropriate to look on the causes of such goodness with profound gratitude. One could also imagine a person who goes through a similar path in less linear fashion than that.

Myself, I don't believe in mixing belief systems but I find it entirely possible, maybe even appropriate under certain circumstances (though I can't say it has been often for me it has happened), to mix practices. You'd basically have to re-appropriate their purpose and view to service a Buddhist view, but that is not a terribly difficult thing to do. Skilful means, brothers!
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Hieros Gamos » Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:52 pm

Malcolm wrote:That's a stretch.
That's true. But there are some who are trying to stretch. It's an uphill battle of course.

http://progressivechristianity.org


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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Hieros Gamos » Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:32 pm

M.G. wrote:I suppose it comes down to what one considers "worldly gods."
Yes.

:thumbsup:

Also whether they have skillful and effective means to free others from all fear.

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Karma Dorje » Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:33 pm

Malcolm wrote: Ajātivāda was borrowed from Mahdyamaka into Advaita by Gaudapada.

But since it is not grounded in dependent origination, even Gaudapada's presentation misses the point.

Anyway, as you and I have discussed before, I do not think that the various liberations bandied about by this and that school are even commensurate with one another. That is to say, I don't think non-Buddhists and so on are necessarily in the same mountain range as Buddhadharma, much less climbing the same mountain.
Yes, it all hinges on how much the ideas about liberation matter compared with the realization that arises from contemplation. From what my guru taught and what I have seen in my own experience, the conceptual structures really don't need to be compared with a view to a single correct doctrinal viewpoint, as correct doctrine for each being is a factor of his or her own traces and predisposition.

I think one needs to receive the Mahavakyas from a lineage teacher and practice them to realization before one can comment on their topography relative to Buddhist dharma. I don't think that treating advaita strictly as an intellectual position is of much use.
"Although my view is higher than the sky, My respect for the cause and effect of actions is as fine as grains of flour."
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:51 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
Malcolm wrote: Ajātivāda was borrowed from Mahdyamaka into Advaita by Gaudapada.

But since it is not grounded in dependent origination, even Gaudapada's presentation misses the point.

Anyway, as you and I have discussed before, I do not think that the various liberations bandied about by this and that school are even commensurate with one another. That is to say, I don't think non-Buddhists and so on are necessarily in the same mountain range as Buddhadharma, much less climbing the same mountain.
Yes, it all hinges on how much the ideas about liberation matter compared with the realization that arises from contemplation. From what my guru taught and what I have seen in my own experience, the conceptual structures really don't need to be compared with a view to a single correct doctrinal viewpoint, as correct doctrine for each being is a factor of his or her own traces and predisposition.

I think one needs to receive the Mahavakyas from a lineage teacher and practice them to realization before one can comment on their topography relative to Buddhist dharma. I don't think that treating advaita strictly as an intellectual position is of much use.
Yes, and I don't agree since this assumes that one cannot examine a map to understand the layout of two distinct geographical regions.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Karma Dorje » Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:59 pm

Malcolm wrote: Yes, and I don't agree since this assumes that one cannot examine a map to understand the layout of two distinct geographical regions.
Except that in this case you are talking about two maps that use different landmarks to portray a single territory, not a single map of two regions. Unless one has actually walked the terrain by both routes, it seems pointless to me to merely use one map to invalidate the other. But this is obviously not a discussion that we can resolve one way or another.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:14 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
Malcolm wrote: Yes, and I don't agree since this assumes that one cannot examine a map to understand the layout of two distinct geographical regions.
Except that in this case you are talking about two maps that use different landmarks to portray a single territory, not a single map of two regions. Unless one has actually walked the terrain by both routes, it seems pointless to me to merely use one map to invalidate the other. But this is obviously not a discussion that we can resolve one way or another.
Don't think I agree, the basis and result posited are different, despite that what may at first glance appear to similar terrain.
Last edited by Malcolm on Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Anders » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:18 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Karma Dorje wrote:
Malcolm wrote: Yes, and I don't agree since this assumes that one cannot examine a map to understand the layout of two distinct geographical regions.
Except that in this case you are talking about two maps that use different landmarks to portray a single territory, not a single map of two regions. Unless one has actually walked the terrain by both routes, it seems pointless to me to merely use one map to invalidate the other. But this is obviously not a discussion that we can resolve one way or another.
Don't think I agree, the basis and result posited are different, despite that what may at first glance appear to similar terrain.
In either case, the territory is your own mind.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:21 pm

Anders wrote:
In either case, the territory is your own mind.
Not necessarily so. Take Samkhya for example. Your own mind [manas] is regarded as being inert and non-sentient. The whole Buddhist project, according to a Yoga-Samkhya perspective is just involvement in prakṛīti, at the expense of realizing purusha, etc.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by anjali » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:26 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:Unless one has actually walked the terrain by both routes, it seems pointless to me to merely use one map to invalidate the other. But this is obviously not a discussion that we can resolve one way or another.
Here is a quote by Tenzin Wangyal: "Emptiness is awareness and awareness is emptiness, and emptiness understands itself by its own awareness." Many other Buddhist sutras, tantras and masters have said similarly. If you can find a clear exposition on the inseparability of awareness and emptiness in Advaita Vedanta, Christianity, or other non-Buddhist tradition, I would be interested in seeing it. Personally, I've never never come across anything in other traditions that captures this key Buddhist view.

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Karma Dorje » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:36 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Karma Dorje wrote:
Malcolm wrote: Yes, and I don't agree since this assumes that one cannot examine a map to understand the layout of two distinct geographical regions.
Except that in this case you are talking about two maps that use different landmarks to portray a single territory, not a single map of two regions. Unless one has actually walked the terrain by both routes, it seems pointless to me to merely use one map to invalidate the other. But this is obviously not a discussion that we can resolve one way or another.
Don't think I agree, the basis and result posited are different, despite that what may at first glance appear to similar terrain.
I am not saying it appears similar on first glance. I am saying that after years of practicing advaita vedanta and Shakta tantra with a guru, it's clear to me that there is little substantive difference between the resultant contemplations while the symbologies can diverge widely. Equally, it is clear that there are considerably more methods to work with in Buddhist dharma and it is in general more direct.
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-Padmasambhava

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:46 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
I am not saying it appears similar on first glance. I am saying that after years of practicing advaita vedanta and Shakta tantra with a guru, it's clear to me that there is little substantive difference between the resultant contemplations while the symbologies can diverge widely. Equally, it is clear that there are considerably more methods to work with in Buddhist dharma and it is in general more direct.

It is not the contemplations that are important, it is the view brought to contemplation that makes the difference. For example, there is no actual difference between the Hindu Nirvikalpa samadhi and Vajropama samadhi in terms of its content, but the fact that one is accompanied by insight and the other is not makes the difference between whether it is mundane or liberative.
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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by dzogchungpa » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:53 pm

Malcolm wrote:It is not the contemplations that are important, it is the view brought to contemplation that makes the difference
How do you know that?
If you focus on an object, you are not meditating. - Dudjom Rinpoche

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Re: Mixing Buddhist and non-Buddhist Practices?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Aug 28, 2014 7:07 pm

dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:It is not the contemplations that are important, it is the view brought to contemplation that makes the difference
How do you know that?
buddha said so.
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