Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

bcol01
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Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by bcol01 » Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am

Lots of intelligent and wonderful people in this forum. I really appreciate learning from all of you. You truly help me in my own practice. :namaste:

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:03 am

bcol01 wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am
Lots of intelligent and wonderful people in this forum. I really appreciate learning from all of you. You truly help me in my own practice. :namaste:
God in the way you mean it is a concept from Abrahamic religions. You can try to find parallels and you might, especially if you examine various mysticism(s)...but fundamentally the Buddhist worldview is different.

"God" in the way you mean it typically entails belief in a finite universe to begin with, if you do not have that....
"it must be coming from the mouthy mastermind of raunchy rapper, Johnny Dangerous”

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Fortyeightvows » Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:13 am

bcol01 wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am
Is the Mystic Law the same as God?
Have to define the terms.

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Queequeg » Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:37 am

Mystic Law = Saddharma

God = ...
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Queequeg » Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:40 am

Saddharma is not God in most senses. Maybe there is a sense in which God is comparable to Saddharma, but that would be a very unique God who was very likely misidentified as a God, which would make it not Saddharma.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by markatex » Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:40 pm

It depends on what you mean by "God." Personally, I think it's a loaded term and I try to steer clear of it, especially when talking to non-Buddhists about Buddhism. Saddharma is not certainly not a personal God in the monotheistic sense. Trying to discuss it in Western philosophical terms at all is dicey, but that's the only frame of reference most people of a European orientation are going to have, so it's understandable that people would want to put it in those terms. It's hard to talk about in any terms.

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Coëmgenu » Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:44 pm

Fortyeightvows wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:13 am
bcol01 wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am
Is the Mystic Law the same as God?
Have to define the terms.
Queequeg wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:37 am
Mystic Law = Saddharma

God = ...
Jesus as attested in non-canonical early Christian literature, on where to find "God":

Πεχ̣ε Ιησοως χ̣ε ευϣδ χ̣οως νητ̣ν́ ν́ϭι νετσ̣ωκ αϩτ τηϣν́ χ̣ε Εισηητε ε̣τ̣μν́τ̣ερo ϩν τ̣πε ε ειε ν́ϩδλητ νδρ̣́ωoρπ ερωτ̣ν́ ν́τε τ̣πε [...]
Says Iēsows: If they habitually say it to you, those who lead the heart and mind of you: "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 the 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.


One of my favourite ātman-esque sections of the Gospel of Thomas.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः
उत्पन्नाजातुविद्यन्तेभावाःक्वचनकेचन

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Queequeg » Fri Dec 01, 2017 7:21 pm

Coëmgenu wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:44 pm
Fortyeightvows wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:13 am
bcol01 wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am
Is the Mystic Law the same as God?
Have to define the terms.
Queequeg wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:37 am
Mystic Law = Saddharma

God = ...
Jesus as attested in non-canonical early Christian literature, on where to find "God":

Πεχ̣ε Ιησοως χ̣ε ευϣδ χ̣οως νητ̣ν́ ν́ϭι νετσ̣ωκ αϩτ τηϣν́ χ̣ε Εισηητε ε̣τ̣μν́τ̣ερo ϩν τ̣πε ε ειε ν́ϩδλητ νδρ̣́ωoρπ ερωτ̣ν́ ν́τε τ̣πε [...]
Says Iēsows: If they habitually say it to you, those who lead the heart and mind of you: "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 the 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.


One of my favourite ātman-esque sections of the Gospel of Thomas.
Hm. Woah.

But that's not canonical Christianity, right? That's Gnostic?...
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Coëmgenu » Fri Dec 01, 2017 7:25 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 7:21 pm
Coëmgenu wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:44 pm
Fortyeightvows wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:13 am


Have to define the terms.
Queequeg wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:37 am
Mystic Law = Saddharma

God = ...
Jesus as attested in non-canonical early Christian literature, on where to find "God":

Πεχ̣ε Ιησοως χ̣ε ευϣδ χ̣οως νητ̣ν́ ν́ϭι νετσ̣ωκ αϩτ τηϣν́ χ̣ε Εισηητε ε̣τ̣μν́τ̣ερo ϩν τ̣πε ε ειε ν́ϩδλητ νδρ̣́ωoρπ ερωτ̣ν́ ν́τε τ̣πε [...]
Says Iēsows: If they habitually say it to you, those who lead the heart and mind of you: "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 the 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.


One of my favourite ātman-esque sections of the Gospel of Thomas.
Hm. Woah.

But that's not canonical Christianity, right? That's Gnostic?...
It is early literature that never made it to canon, hence "early heterodoxy" one could suppose. It is not Gnostic though.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः
उत्पन्नाजातुविद्यन्तेभावाःक्वचनकेचन

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by The Cicada » Fri Dec 01, 2017 7:44 pm

Strictly, the answer is always no. Less strictly, "kind of." For a beginner in deeper study who might benefit from the view, a "yes, in a way," with many qualifications. I think that if you're trying to deal with the idea of what the Mystic Law and "Buddha" are in a subjective, emotional sense, that some of that sentiment is the same. Shakyamuni is often referred to as "Bhagavan," or "The Lord," a title used for Vedic deities.

You could, more or less, say that the Mystic Law is like God in the sense that it is the great, ultimate "something or other" to which you direct your devotion and seek to reconcile yourself with, and if you are willing to accept that what you thought was "God" was actually something quite different from what you were taught in another faith and were brought to imagine. Understanding that different and more accurate picture is what studying the Tiantai thought underlying Nichiren's, as well as general Buddhist thought, is for.

The description of Nichiren Buddhism as "panentheistic-ish" seemed to be an idea that Minobu liked, but if you get too attached to the theós part as a descriptor, it certainly doesn't mean what you think it means once you look at it closely.

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Minobu » Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:00 pm

for me it is all about...Samsara has always been...

it just is....
Then came the Buddhas that used their newly developed power and made it their own for helping sentients.
they did things.....

you have to realize Indian cosmology that is basically accepted by Buddha..

in order for Samsara to exist it is born from Shiva(death) Brahma(life) and Vishnu(holds the molecules together)....

they die and another three gods take their place in eternity giving birth to a samsara...a little different each time due to the gods that are born to be those gods...apparently we all have done this at one time or another...maybe 500 times...each of us has done it 500 times...along with being everyone's mother at least 500 times..

the mystic law is Buddha and yet we are as well and once realized fully become unborn by being one with the Mystic law. i think there is a whole physical and spiritual physical metamorpheus...hence the three kayas ...blow out karma...become pure ultimate reality and bingo...

that aside
Large "G" God can mean so many things...like the pantheism is totally different from some Supreme Being Creating something that is basically His...and we just pawns in His creation....
to the pantheist everything is just God...more like a scientific view...all the laws of the universe are God and everything comes from that and everything is that....it's a huge leap from being pawns in God's creation.

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Coëmgenu » Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:22 pm

IMO, according to Christians, and if they understood Buddhism, they would say that God is "True Aspect". They would IMO "say" that, whether a Buddhist would agree or not is another matter? God, for instance, is "jealous". Is dharmakaya "jealous"? God hardened Pharaoh's heart. Would dharmakaya harden Pharaoh's heart?
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः
उत्पन्नाजातुविद्यन्तेभावाःक्वचनकेचन

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Lindama » Sun Dec 03, 2017 11:03 pm

then, what would you say about this.... if I have it right....

the living waters in christianity simply {make] something more of what they already are.

for me, deep compassion in that. tho, {make} is an odd word there

and, the trinity vis a vis the kayas....?

not what one hears in church
Not last night,
not this morning,
melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by The Cicada » Sun Dec 03, 2017 11:19 pm

bcol01 wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am
Lots of intelligent and wonderful people in this forum. I really appreciate learning from all of you. You truly help me in my own practice. :namaste:
Coëmgenu wrote:
Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:22 pm
IMO, according to Christians, and if they understood Buddhism, they would say that God is "True Aspect". They would IMO "say" that, whether a Buddhist would agree or not is another matter? God, for instance, is "jealous". Is dharmakaya "jealous"? God hardened Pharaoh's heart. Would dharmakaya harden Pharaoh's heart?
Just tell them they've got it wrong, bcol01. They've got a bad metaphor, a bad theory, an incomplete understanding. God is theological phlogiston. What you've encountered is a higher way.

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by srivijaya » Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:24 am

bcol01 wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:52 am
Lots of intelligent and wonderful people in this forum. I really appreciate learning from all of you. You truly help me in my own practice. :namaste:
I would echo what others have written, that if it's the dualistic interpretation of the Abrahamic God, then the answer has to be no. However, there are other ways of interpreting the 'divine' if we can refer to it as that. Hints are to be found in the teachings of the Desert Fathers and other mystics but for my money, the closest anyone has ever come is within Kashmiri Shaivism.

This is quite unique and special. Only in something of such refinement do we see a semblance of our Dharma, as the supreme is one's own consciousness, rather than anything external. Really worth checking out if this subject is close to your heart.

If you can disregard the overly 'new age' feel of this vid, it gives a flavour but it's a large topic (Yoga Spanda Karikas)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OnHw7uQIrUE

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Lindama » Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:19 am

:anjali:
yes, I once heard Igor Kufayev teaching on Kashmiri Shaivism... it resonated for me. Igor went back to Europe where you may still find him.

I was looking for something in my e-files today and came acress this... yet another piece that goes beyond. Thomas Merton was a Trappist Catholic Priest who also studied zen. I'll give him a little slack on some of the languaging. no matter.... "the universe dies of excellence" must be a new zen koan...
A Psalm
By Thomas Merton
(1915 - 1968)
When psalms surprise me with their music
And antiphons turn to rum
The Spirit sings: the bottom drops out of my soul.

And from the center of my cellar, Love, louder than thunder
Opens a heaven of naked air.

New eyes awaken.
I send Love's name into the world with wings
And songs grow up around me like a jungle.
Choirs of all creatures sing the tunes
Your Spirit played in Eden.
Zebras and antelopes and birds of paradise
Shine on the face of the abyss
And I am drunk with the great wilderness
Of the sixth day in Genesis.

But sound is never half so fair
As when that music turns to air
And the universe dies of excellence.

Sun, moon and stars
Fall from their heavenly towers.
Joys walk no longer down the blue world's shore.

Though fires loiter, lights still fly on the air of the gulf,
All fear another wind, another thunder:
Then one more voice
Snuffs all their flares in one gust.

And I go forth with no more wine and no more stars
And no more buds and no more Eden
And no more animals and no more sea:

While God sings by himself in acres of night
And walls fall down, that guarded Paradise.
Not last night,
not this morning,
melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by amanitamusc » Mon Dec 04, 2017 6:30 am

Since you posted in the Nichiren forum and Q gave you a very clear answer. :applause: Congratulations.

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by srivijaya » Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:24 pm

Lindama wrote:
Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:19 am
:anjali:
yes, I once heard Igor Kufayev teaching on Kashmiri Shaivism... it resonated for me. Igor went back to Europe where you may still find him.
Thanks Linda,
I'll have to check that out. A close friend of mine was very influenced by Thomas Merton. Evocative poetry.
:namaste:

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Lindama » Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:18 pm

good interview on BATGAP:

srivijaya wrote:
Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:24 pm
Lindama wrote:
Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:19 am
:anjali:
yes, I once heard Igor Kufayev teaching on Kashmiri Shaivism... it resonated for me. Igor went back to Europe where you may still find him.
Thanks Linda,
I'll have to check that out. A close friend of mine was very influenced by Thomas Merton. Evocative poetry.
:namaste:
Not last night,
not this morning,
melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho

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Re: Is the Mystic Law the same as God? If not, how so?

Post by Coëmgenu » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:13 am

Lindama wrote:
Sun Dec 03, 2017 11:03 pm
the trinity vis a vis the kayas....?
I think that the Trinity does not map on exactly to the Trikāya, IMO at least. However, the relation (note: I refer only to the relation between them here) between the members of the trinity and their collective Godhood, IMO, is the exact same consumate interfusion that Ven Zhiyi & Ven Nichiren spoke of between the 3 truths.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः
उत्पन्नाजातुविद्यन्तेभावाःक्वचनकेचन

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