Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

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The Cicada
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by The Cicada » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:03 am

Malcolm wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:48 am
Several buddhas have appeared in this world to teach us, and many more will appear (another 997).
Yet none of these other Buddhas are the Buddha of our time period. The beings of those time periods should revere the Buddhas that appear to them as the example for their enlightenment. We should revere ours: Shakyamuni Buddha.

Buddhas are not restricted by time and space. Buddhas also do not "reach out." Their compassion is spontaneous, like a wishfulfilling gem that satisfies all wishes.
Buddhas do not appear. Malcolm does not "speak" online, or "write," or "type," or "exist."

Buddhas do "reach out," in a way.
This Sahaloka is an impure buddhafield because the experience of the various sufferings of this world system are unthinkable. Of course the Buddha was kind to prepare this buddhafield, but don't kid yourself into thinking there aren't better places to be.
Things only appear this way due to your ontological misapprehensions. There is no "place" beyond "here" and no "here." There is no other place and time and this place and time are shunyata.
DGA wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:41 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:32 am
You could also just call these Buddhas Vajrasattva, Vajradhara, Samantabhadra, Amitabha, Akshobhya, Adibuddha, our Lord Shakyamuni Buddha, since he actually appeared in this world to teach us. This takes us back to Nichiren's teaching: Why revere other Buddhas when this one is close by and reaching out to us? Why run off to a Pure Land when you're already in His Pure Land of the Saha Realm?
Relevant discussion starts here:

viewtopic.php?f=39&t=26587&start=20#p410337
We're not talking about God. We're talking about Buddha.

:namaste:

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Malcolm
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Malcolm » Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:32 am

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:03 am
We should revere ours: Shakyamuni Buddha.
We should revere buddhahood itself, and not its various epithets.

Buddhas are not restricted by time and space. Buddhas also do not "reach out." Their compassion is spontaneous, like a wishfulfilling gem that satisfies all wishes.
Buddhas do not appear. Malcolm does not "speak" online, or "write," or "type," or "exist."

Buddhas do "reach out," in a way.
No, buddhas do not reach out in any way whatsoever. Buddhas never saved anyone from anything. That's not their job.

Once the Buddha sat above Kapilavastu and watched the Śākya Tribe, all of his relatives, be slaughtered and taken captive by the Kosalians.
This Sahaloka is an impure buddhafield because the experience of the various sufferings of this world system are unthinkable. Of course the Buddha was kind to prepare this buddhafield, but don't kid yourself into thinking there aren't better places to be.
Things only appear this way due to your ontological misapprehensions. There is no "place" beyond "here" and no "here." There is no other place and time and this place and time are shunyata.
You must think the Buddha had ontological misapprehensions, he constantly spoke of places, both here and beyond here, and in time as well. To deny this is foolish, and to try and explain it away, trite. The emptiness of things in no way contradicts their appearance and order.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Konchog1 » Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:34 am

Malcolm wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 2:45 pm
Śākyamuni Buddha is a normal supreme nirmanakāya, fourth in a sequence of 1001.
What about other texts which place him as the sixth or a different number? I've seen the relics of Kasyapa, what evidence is there for earlier Buddhas?
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Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by pael » Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:14 am

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:32 am
No, buddhas do not reach out in any way whatsoever. Buddhas never saved anyone from anything. That's not their job.

Once the Buddha sat above Kapilavastu and watched the Śākya Tribe, all of his relatives, be slaughtered and taken captive by the Kosalians.
Did he just watched?

Mahāvaipulya Sūtra of Entering a Tathāgata’s Inconceivable State of Wisdom says:
Śākyamuni Tathāgata had already attained samyak-saṁbodhi for countless kalpas, though He, to bring sentient beings to [spiritual] maturity, displayed the annihilation of the Śākya clan [by King Virūḍhaka’s army].
http://www.sutrasmantras.info/sutra47.html
What this means? Why he displayed this?
May all beings be free from suffering and causes of suffering

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Queequeg » Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:12 pm

This discussion has long gone down a rabbit hole.

The Eternal Buddha Shakyamuni is a doctrine of the Lotus School.

It is an aspect of the Perfect and Sudden Teaching, and cannot be understood outside of this context.

In over simplified terms, The Eternal Buddha is the Buddha and his field of merit intrinsic in your mind. It is your threefold buddhanature. It is not something to be gained or acquired, or found in the pages of a book.

If you go searching for the first Buddha, you'll only ever find the Buddha in your mind. That's the only Buddha we are really talking about. All the rest of it are devices to point you to the Buddha in your mind, to point to YOU and the Three Bodies intrinsic to you since time immemorial, through all those lives you have cried oceans of tears.

With that, may you find your Ur-Buddha and cry tears of joy instead of sorrow.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Malcolm » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:16 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:12 pm
This discussion has long gone down a rabbit hole.
All discussions on Dharmawheel are rabbit holes.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by DGA » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:37 pm

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:03 am
DGA wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:41 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:32 am
You could also just call these Buddhas Vajrasattva, Vajradhara, Samantabhadra, Amitabha, Akshobhya, Adibuddha, our Lord Shakyamuni Buddha, since he actually appeared in this world to teach us. This takes us back to Nichiren's teaching: Why revere other Buddhas when this one is close by and reaching out to us? Why run off to a Pure Land when you're already in His Pure Land of the Saha Realm?
Relevant discussion starts here:

viewtopic.php?f=39&t=26587&start=20#p410337
We're not talking about God. We're talking about Buddha.

:namaste:
In my opinion, the way you talk about Buddha Shakyamuni bears a strong resemblance to the way monotheists talk about God.

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by jake » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:41 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:16 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:12 pm
This discussion has long gone down a rabbit hole.
All discussions on Dharmawheel are rabbit holes.
So, the Eternal Buddha is Frith? :mind blown:

(I've never been able to make a Watership Down reference before)
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by narhwal90 » Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:07 pm

Sometimes in a conversation its possible to associate each person with a character from Alice in Wonderland...

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by The Cicada » Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:21 pm

DGA wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:37 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:03 am
DGA wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:41 pm


Relevant discussion starts here:

viewtopic.php?f=39&t=26587&start=20#p410337
We're not talking about God. We're talking about Buddha.

:namaste:
In my opinion, the way you talk about Buddha Shakyamuni bears a strong resemblance to the way monotheists talk about God.
The way I talk about the Lord has nothing to do with Allah.

Lord Buddha is the parent, teacher, and sovereign of sentient beings in this world. He is the Hero of the World who has proclaimed, "Only I can save sentient beings from suffering," and preaches forever above mount Eagle Peak as heavenly beings beat drums and sing songs of praise. Read the Lotus Sutra and Nichiren's venerable epistles.

Any similarity between Buddhism and monotheistic religions is all in your mind. It's all an illusion—likely the result of your failure to grasp the emptiness of things...

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Minobu » Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:28 pm

DGA wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:37 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:03 am
DGA wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:41 pm


Relevant discussion starts here:

viewtopic.php?f=39&t=26587&start=20#p410337
We're not talking about God. We're talking about Buddha.

:namaste:
In my opinion, the way you talk about Buddha Shakyamuni bears a strong resemblance to the way monotheists talk about God.
yeah well ..the way we talk of dharmakaya and dharmadhatu is close to immanentism as well .
i have this understanding of it, that i can only touch lightly or it ends up as a form of immanentism .
so i work with it...

the paranoid in me sees this as some sort of infiltration of Christian ideals making a stance in buddhism in America. As of late some of the "STUFF" i read is not what was there when i first started to study Buddhism"S"...
it's misleading but comes under the umbrella of god the Creator and can easily ruin The Buddha's Teaching.
It's like "See they too believe there is this underlying thing that all things come from"


that same paranoia sprung up here
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:32 am

No, buddhas do not reach out in any way whatsoever. Buddhas never saved anyone from anything. That's not their job.

Once the Buddha sat above Kapilavastu and watched the Śākya Tribe, all of his relatives, be slaughtered and taken captive by the Kosalians.
let me explain.
Buddha leads people to liberation, and sometimes help cure people like my dad..His Teachings did that...Did He interject or have someone interject , i dunno malcolm. You talk of the
Malcolm wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 2:45 pm


There is only one Teacher. This the normative Mahāyāna view.
Malcolm wrote:
Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:07 am


The six abhijñā's are part of a buddha's qualities.
so somehow they do help, maybe the use of reach out is misunderstood by me and why you say it. Maybe you are trying to describe that it is a natural occurrence in nature...not some dude doing things...trying to allow us to see Buddha more of a , for lack of articulation...A mother nature thing that just happens due to "IT's" being , for lack of better words "Mother Nature"

anyway the paranoid part.
Once the Buddha sat above Kapilavastu and watched the Śākya Tribe, all of his relatives, be slaughtered and taken captive by the Kosalians.
in any religious setting and teaching , once any mention of the allowance of killing , and killing in certain cases...make me strongly feel this is put into the teaching by kings and queens and governments for the masses.

i honestly think that not all that is written in the Name of Buddha is Kosher so to speak and is sometime contrived for ulterior motives by people in power to control the masses and in this case subtlety allow them to rise to arms.

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by The Cicada » Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:37 pm

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:21 pm
Any similarity between Buddhism and monotheistic religions is all in your mind. It's all an illusion—likely the result of your failure to grasp the emptiness of things...
I'm messing with you a bit here, though what I've written is technically true—despite basically gaslighting you. (I could swear some do that with shunyata here...) However, Nichiren does write about the Buddha very much in what we would call "religious" terms and not unlike the way many monotheists would talk about their god. Not in exactly the same way, but close enough.

I've taken to just calling Lord Buddha "the Lord" at times because of something my paternal grandmother told me as a child when she would have me memorize and recite Biblical scripture. She said to always specify that I was talking about Jesus, otherwise people wouldn't know which "Lord" I was referring to. So sometimes I say or write "the Lord" in a half-serious, sometimes tongue-in-cheek way.

Despite my Christian background, there is an incident often recounted by my patrilineal family on holidays that happened decades ago in which my aunt Paula got into an argument with my aunt Cindy and threatened to hit her in the head with a shovel if she didn't pray to Buddha. I'm not sure of the exact context of the argument or what kind or quantity of drugs must have been involved, but I like to think that Buddhism might run in my veins. It's certainly a deeply ingrained karmic disposition for me.

For sure, the devotional aspect of Buddhist practice can be very important for us rural bumpkins.

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Malcolm » Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:49 pm

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:21 pm

Lord Buddha is the parent, teacher, and sovereign of sentient beings in this world. He is the Hero of the World who has proclaimed, "Only I can save sentient beings from suffering," and preaches forever above mount Eagle Peak as heavenly beings beat drums and sing songs of praise. Read the Lotus Sutra and Nichiren's venerable epistles.
Uh huh, and when is the last time you were at Vulture Peak Mountain and saw the Buddha teaching there?

Not in this lifetime, I wager.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by The Cicada » Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:19 pm

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:37 pm
I've taken to just calling Lord Buddha "the Lord" at times because of something my paternal grandmother told me as a child when she would have me memorize and recite Biblical scripture. She said to always specify that I was talking about Jesus, otherwise people wouldn't know which "Lord" I was referring to. So sometimes I say or write "the Lord" in a half-serious, sometimes tongue-in-cheek way.
And as synchronicity would have it, I'm not the only person who thinks this way.
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Malcolm wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:49 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:21 pm

Lord Buddha is the parent, teacher, and sovereign of sentient beings in this world. He is the Hero of the World who has proclaimed, "Only I can save sentient beings from suffering," and preaches forever above mount Eagle Peak as heavenly beings beat drums and sing songs of praise. Read the Lotus Sutra and Nichiren's venerable epistles.
Uh huh, and when is the last time you were at Vulture Peak Mountain and saw the Buddha teaching there?

Not in this lifetime, I wager.
I don't remember what I ate for lunch the day before yesterday. In fact, after I started keeping a serious journal, I was amazed at how many very important details I'm apt to forget. Sometimes even major events I put behind me and move on without thinking about them in depth for quite some time. Sometimes we forget to visit our father in this life and more so Shakyamuni on Eagle Peak. Sometimes we forget the arrows we drove through solid rock. Sometimes we forget eternity. But I have it on good authority that, in a way, I never left, and there are times during my practice when I've genuinely felt like it, and times when the positive results of sincere practice were too concrete to deny.

:namaste:

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by DGA » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:28 am

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:37 pm
For sure, the devotional aspect of Buddhist practice can be very important for us rural bumpkins.
The devotional aspect of Buddhist practice is certainly important to me, and I have reason to believe it's important to other Buddhists, including many who frequent this subforum. I rejoice in the devotion you and others here express toward Buddha Shakyamuni. It's excellent.

You know what else is excellent? The devotion of Ch'an practitioners toward Guan Yin, and Nyingmapas toward Guru Padmasambhava. The devotion of Pure Land practitioners toward Buddha Amitabha stands out in this context. Why? I think that if you took the time to understand Pure Land practice from the perspective of a Pure Land practitioner (reading Shinran, say), and not through the polemic of any other writer, you would find a lot to appreciate in it, and your practice of Nichiren's Buddhism would be stronger for it, not slighted in the least.



This is, of course, entirely separate from the question of whether any of us may be projecting monotheistic modes of thinking and feeling onto Dharma practice. There's more than one kind of devotion in the world. Buddhist devotion is its own thing, and I think it's a good thing.

Namo Buddhaya!

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by illarraza » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:58 am

Coëmgenu wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:14 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:57 pm
Might be relevant:

https://tricycle.org/magazine/greater-awakening/
Quite brilliant article! Although it certainly has it's 'angle' in how it frames the Tibetan monk and his tradition, I must say. :stirthepot:
She is Gakkai and her article has a Gakkai (and not Nichiren) bent. She diminishes Shakyamuni Buddha by asserting that he is just one of a myriad of Buddhas. Nichiren's One Buddha Doctrine is ever more profound.

Mark

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by illarraza » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:44 am

[/quote]

Continued in the next post.[/quote]

That's very useful, Queequeg. Whatever flaws may be present, this method that you've outlined, as you stated, certainly would serve to ingrain the basic teachings beyond simple memory.

I perform some simple visualizations that I picked up through reading the Lotus Sutra and the curriculum designed by a Kempon Hokke website I ran across. I also have Charles Atkins' Modern Buddhist Healing on Kindle, so if I'm grappling with a body affliction or illness I have a method that I can turn to that nicely overlaps with some of the ritual magic I flirted with in the past.
[/quote]

I grapple with life and death affliction from moment to moment. I chant with the awareness of both the eternity of life and Nichiren's courage in the face of end-life and day to day privations. Many people don't know when their end will come. I know all too well that it won't be in 20 years, possibly not in one year or in one month.

I work full time with a disability where less than one out of a thousand people would or could even continue to work and I very rarely miss a day of work. Experiencing the Four Virtues of eternity, joy, true self, and purity, I feel as light as a feather. The greatest joy is knowing that Shakyamuni Buddha and Nichiren Daishonin have my back throughout the Three Existences.

Mark

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Coëmgenu » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:45 am

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:49 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:21 pm

Lord Buddha is the parent, teacher, and sovereign of sentient beings in this world. He is the Hero of the World who has proclaimed, "Only I can save sentient beings from suffering," and preaches forever above mount Eagle Peak as heavenly beings beat drums and sing songs of praise. Read the Lotus Sutra and Nichiren's venerable epistles.
Uh huh, and when is the last time you were at Vulture Peak Mountain and saw the Buddha teaching there?

Not in this lifetime, I wager.
Do we really need to interpret "seeing" the Buddha so literally? If we are willing to entertain all of these extended interpretations of who and what a Buddha is apart from the physical body, why are we not willing to entertain the Buddha seen in the Lifespan chapter in a similarly charitable fashion?

Mr Cicada is currently at the Vulture Peak seeing the Buddha, by some reckonings, regardless of what he is doing.
並畢竟空。並如來藏。並實相。非三 而三三而不三。非合非散而合而散。非非合非非散。不可一異而一異。
All three truths are ultimately empty, all are tathāgatagarbha, all are true aspect. Not three, they are three; three, they are not three. Neither combined nor separated, neither uncombined nor unseparated. Neither same nor different, yet in a sense same, and in a sense different.

夫三諦者。 天然之性徳也。 中諦者。 統一切法。 眞諦者。 泯一切法。 俗諦者。 立一切法。
The three truths. Heaven-sent natural characteristics. The middle truth unifies all dharmas. The ultimate truth demolishes all dharmas. The conventional truth establishes all dharmas.

摩訶止観始終心要Móhēzhǐguān, Shǐzhōngxīnyào.

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by illarraza » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:49 am

The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:37 pm
The Cicada wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:21 pm
Any similarity between Buddhism and monotheistic religions is all in your mind. It's all an illusion—likely the result of your failure to grasp the emptiness of things...
I'm messing with you a bit here, though what I've written is technically true—despite basically gaslighting you. (I could swear some do that with shunyata here...) However, Nichiren does write about the Buddha very much in what we would call "religious" terms and not unlike the way many monotheists would talk about their god. Not in exactly the same way, but close enough.

I've taken to just calling Lord Buddha "the Lord" at times because of something my paternal grandmother told me as a child when she would have me memorize and recite Biblical scripture. She said to always specify that I was talking about Jesus, otherwise people wouldn't know which "Lord" I was referring to. So sometimes I say or write "the Lord" in a half-serious, sometimes tongue-in-cheek way.

Despite my Christian background, there is an incident often recounted by my patrilineal family on holidays that happened decades ago in which my aunt Paula got into an argument with my aunt Cindy and threatened to hit her in the head with a shovel if she didn't pray to Buddha. I'm not sure of the exact context of the argument or what kind or quantity of drugs must have been involved, but I like to think that Buddhism might run in my veins. It's certainly a deeply ingrained karmic disposition for me.

For sure, the devotional aspect of Buddhist practice can be very important for us rural bumpkins.
Senchu Murano quotes Nichiren in his translation of the True Object of Worship, explaining Gohonzon as "Supreme Being".

Mark

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by illarraza » Thu Oct 19, 2017 5:13 am

The difference between Buddhism and Christianity is that no matter how righteous, virtuous, or courageous one is, one can never become God in Christianity, God-like but not God. From the perspective of Nichiren Lotus Sutra Buddhism, we really are the Eternal Original Shakyamuni Buddha of the Juryo Chapter of the Lotus Sutra (sudden awakening) or will become (gradual awakening) this Buddha in this lifetime or in the near future.

Even were one aware of this reality, one maintains gratitude for the Original Teacher Shakyamuni Buddha because he was the founder of the teachings of the Lotus Sutra (Myoho renge kyo) since the infinite past. The Buddhist logic, "one but not one, two but not two" applies.

Mark

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