Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by RengeReciter » Fri Nov 03, 2017 9:32 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 7:25 pm
RengeReciter wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 7:14 pm
I find it endlessly ironic that my Catholic upbringing provided me with something of a "Lotus-sized" space in my mind's eye through which I could better grasp the inseparability of Myohorengekyo and Shakyamuni. If I may draw the analogy without inadvertently subscribing to a wholly wrong view, it seems that the relationship between the Buddha and the Law that he taught is similar to that of Christ and the Logos.

The corporeal being is perfectly and seamlessly the manifestation of a mystical reality. To see the former is to see the fullness of the latter. Differences of course arise in the fact that MHRK is intrinsic to living beings and their environments by default. The Buddha, as one who has attained stainless realization of his oneness with the Law, transmits his understanding (or awakening) to us so that we can see what has been right under our noses since time immemorial.

Orthodox Christian cosmology posits that God created the world in a space that He utterly vacated, thus sidestepping the inevitable conclusion that the universe is comprised of God's essence. I have to hold onto these distinctions tenaciously to avoid accidentally falling into the religion of my birth.
Someday, someone who is well informed is going to do a comparative study of the trinity and trikaya...

That is an interesting distinction...

I know many former Catholic Buddhists... that is a difficult path. :smile:
I will pay astronomical prices for that study :smile: .

Not to drag the conversation too far afield, but for me the separation between Catholic thought and Buddhist thought is a leap rather than a chasm. There are days where I still nurse the suspicion that Christ may have been another transformation body of Shakyamuni. So much of the Gospel seems reflected in the dharma. It is challenging at times to peer into my own assumptions and to see where I have allowed too much cross pollination between my experiences of either faith.

Still, it is worth noting that I have been chanting with my evolving, Catholic-tinged perspective of Shakyamuni to very pleasing results. Similar to what Mark mentioned in my other thread, there is far less fragmentation in my experience. I can read Nichiren without having to modify his words or the events they describe. When I speak to others in my day to day life about my faith, the words flow because I don't find myself having to continually make psychological caveats.

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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by Queequeg » Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:19 pm

Well, since the thread is technically about your narrative, I guess we can go where you take it.

We look at the various forms of Buddhism and take for granted the seamless way they appear to embody the wider culture from which we take it... but what we see is the result of often hard fought periods of spiritual, intellectual, and even physically violent confrontations - I can think of a few episodes where the introduction of Buddhism had some connection even to civil wars.

Buddhism, with its introduction to the West is going through a process of confrontation and digestion. I once heard a dharma teacher say, if as a Westerner Buddhism doesn't offend you in some way, you are not understanding it. Its ridiculous to think we are going to be some sort of blank slate onto which Buddhism can be grafted in whole without any obstacles. Its going to take generations of people working out the implications of Buddha dharma against everything else that makes up our various identities - and that's going to include our Judeo-Christian heritage in the West, our technology, our scientific knowledge, etc. along with all the other factors that make us who we are. I do not doubt that Buddhism will take on some influence from Christianity and Judaism, from science and secularism. We don't know what that end result is going to be because that process is taking place inside our own minds.

Reflecting on it - I don't think I've ever really heard former Catholics find too much trouble with trikaya - and maybe its because of their background with the trinity. Totally anecdotal. The issue I hear from Catholics is often the personal implications of emptiness and interdependence. Totally anecdotal.
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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by Coëmgenu » Sat Nov 04, 2017 1:00 am

RengeReciter wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 9:32 pm
Orthodox Christian cosmology posits that God created the world in a space that He utterly vacated, thus sidestepping the inevitable conclusion that the universe is comprised of God's essence. I have to hold onto these distinctions tenaciously to avoid accidentally falling into the religion of my birth.
To complicate the matter, what you write above is a theologoumenon, not a doctrine. In fact, this belief can be found in some older Jewish esoteric commentaries on the Torah, namely, that God created the world as a vacuum of "him". In the Christian worldview, the gap between God and creation is introduced via sin. To further complicate the narrative, this vacuum is healed and reconciled through the passion of Jesus Christ, according to many Christian narratives. Jesus reconciles all of reality, redeeming it to God. This is manifest in, for instance, in the 'Harrowing of Hell' apocrypha of the 200s, where Christ, while dead, descends into the furthest pits of hell, liberating all that are righteous in the ways of Godliness, and furthermore, does this in all times, outside of time, constantly, as one of his eternal attributes.

Thus Christ interpenetrates the fallen reality. Me and my Anglican spouse have had many debates and exchanges on this point of Christian metaphysics.

Πεχ̣ε Ιησοως χ̣ε ευϣδ χ̣οως νητ̣ν́ ν́ϭι νετσ̣ωκ αϩτ τηϣν́
Says Iēsows: If they habitually say it to you, those who lead the heart and mind of you:

χ̣ε Εισηητε ε̣τ̣μν́τ̣ερo ϩν τ̣πε ε ειε ν́ϩδλητ νδρ̣́ωoρπ ερωτ̣ν́ ν́τε τ̣πε [...]
"Behold! The abstract sovereignty dwells in the sky," then the birds will be made prior to you to be of that sky.

If they habitually say it to you: "It is in the sea," then the fish will be made prior to you to be of that sea.

But rather, the abstract sovereignty is of your inside and of your outside. When you habitually recognize [this abstract sovereignty as inside, outside, yourself,] then it shall recognize you and you shall understand that you are the "Sons of the Father Who Lives". If however you shall recognize yourself not, then you are in an abstract poverty and you are an abstract poverty.

-Gospel of Thomas, Saying III

Further blending genres are the old heterodox pseudo-Nestorian literature of the 景教 ('Religion of Light'), a syncretic movement which blended Christianity seamlessly with Chinese Buddhism, presenting Jesus, or 大聖 (daishō***, or mahāsiddha), the 'Great Sage', as a teacher teaching the way to the calming of the passions and liberation from the cycle of rebirth. These are, however, of course, completely heterodox to any extant mainstream Christianity, with the esception of the excerpt from the Gospel of Thomas, an Early Christian Text with minimal Gnostic accruals.

***some here might recognize the characters being used here
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 dharmāḥ. The ultimate truth demolishes all dharmāḥ. The conventional truth establishes all dharmāḥ.

摩訶止観始終心要Móhēzhǐguān, Shǐzhōngxīnyào.

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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by Minobu » Sat Nov 04, 2017 6:55 am

just a few thoughts.
the way Jesus tamed the roman empire with a teaching of love makes me see Him as a Buddha or a manifestation of Buddha using expedients to mold this planets human history and culture to cure a certain pathogen for lack of a better word.... to make a clear path and eliminating certain problems in introducing the path to save sentients ..and make it palpable at a certain time and ripening...

also Jews do believe in reincarnation , a set number of lives to get things right...

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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by illarraza » Wed Nov 15, 2017 5:50 am


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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by PuerAzaelis » Wed Nov 15, 2017 3:30 pm

If there were no Jesus what would Buddhists talk about?
Generally, enjoyment of speech is the gateway to poor [results]. So it becomes the foundation for generating all negative emotional states. Jampel Pawo, The Certainty of the Diamond Mind

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Re: Shakyamuni: A Narrative of Faith

Post by Malcolm » Wed Nov 15, 2017 3:49 pm

illarraza wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 5:50 am
More like a bluescreen, I'd say.
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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