how to be a buddhist?

General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
[N.B. This is the forum that was called ‘Exploring Buddhism’. The new name simply describes it better.]
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tomschwarz
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how to be a buddhist?

Post by tomschwarz » Thu Mar 10, 2016 8:26 am

hello dear friends in the illusion of selfhood,

I think (danger :smile: ) that many on this forum talk about Buddhism but at least in the forum, do not practice it. The practice of Buddhism has three interdependent areas: ethics, meditation and wisdom. The key down falls that I see on the forum are in ethics and wisdom practice.

Do you perceive that too? Or do you disagree? If you disagree, now, or with any post, how do you do so while practising the wisdom of sameness? The ethics of generousity and patience? Or do you disagree with those practice areas of Buddhism?
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

Simon E.
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Simon E. » Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:13 am

Who are you or anyone else to judge anyone else?
I see no sign that you have any understanding of what Buddhadharma is.
And even if you do you have no way of gauging anyone else's understanding or practice.
Gone fishin' :smile:

muni
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by muni » Thu Mar 10, 2016 12:46 pm

empty mind, all is OK. there is nothing important to do. except to use that ticket and warm the world.
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

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tomschwarz
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by tomschwarz » Thu Mar 10, 2016 5:35 pm

of corse you are right dear muni man ))))
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

muni
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by muni » Thu Mar 10, 2016 5:42 pm

If you disagree, now, or with any post, how do you do so while practising the wisdom of sameness? The ethics of generousity and patience? Or do you disagree with those practice areas of Buddhism?
Generosity, patience can be crucial support to not start to grasp / fall into delusions. Before I saw patience as a useful thing but to apply it is very difficult without remaining aware of mind to detect an eventually grasped thought directly before it becomes action, and let it dissolve.
But....alas...when there is already grasping, then awareness is completely lost. Then mind can smoothly go to react on its own grasped idea/view, its' own suffering, seeing it as "the other there" which is then painted by own suffering. ( that so or so one) Therefore these ethics, are at least for me, very much a help. Then awareness is not clouded by running into being fooled by own thoughts.

Then there is no high, low, small, great at all as wisdom, since all opposites are minds' fabrications. This we can experience in equipoise, I mean the lack of these.

I feel communications needs awareness or these are ground to increase the sense of I, increase suffering by thinking mind. Dream by proving, opinions...Before thinking mind there is sameness, since empty mind.

Zen Master:
Guest talks about his dream.
Host talks about his dream.
Then guest and host talk together about their dreams.
They don't understand they are in dream.
That is a dream.
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

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tomschwarz
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by tomschwarz » Thu Mar 10, 2016 7:37 pm

wonderful muni. it is that way.

so simon, of course you are right... ...but still, isn't there anything that you have to do, or not do to be a buddhist which are evident? like the things that muni described above? and isn't it possible to not be a buddhist? do you simply need to say "i believe in bhuddism" to be a buddhist? of course not. so, actually i think that the first steps of buddhism are quite clear. and it is also clear who is doing it and who is not. no?

and also clear is that things like fear of failure, fear of rejection and other pride/fear-oriented psychodynamics (self-defense based on self doubt based on self image), puts average westerners at ods with caring for others and selflessness (generosity) which are part of the path of preparation in buddhism. no?
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

Simon E.
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Simon E. » Thu Mar 10, 2016 7:43 pm

No.

Lets start with the fact that both 'Buddhist' and 'Buddhism' are modern constructs.

Some of the most realised followers of Buddhas Dharma have behaved in ways that do not conform to expected behaviours. Note well though, this does not, mean that adopting unconventional behaviours will lead automatically to an understanding of Dharma.

The reality is we need to find a teacher in an authentic lineage of Buddhadharma and strive to realise their teachings.
This will leave no time to consider what others are doing.
Gone fishin' :smile:

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conebeckham
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by conebeckham » Thu Mar 10, 2016 8:27 pm

From my perspective, to Be a Buddhist one has to see the inexorability of Cause and Effect, the Law of Karma, and how these are the basis of the 12 links and of our experience as or in samsara, and one then one has to rely on the various methods outlined by Buddha to avoid wrong actions and engage in right actions in order to realize freedom from Samsara.

This seems to be the basis of all Buddhist paths. Definitions and structures of Ethics, Meditation, and even Wisdom can differ depending on one's experience and perspective, but this basis is shared by anyone who would subscribe to Buddha's teaching, I think.
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")

muni
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by muni » Tue Mar 15, 2016 1:43 pm

I was thinking on how about interaction in daily life? I share only two coins:

Long time ago I saw this quote:
“A crystal takes on the colour of the cloth upon which it is placed, whether white, yellow, red or black. Likewise, the people with whom you spend your time whether their influence is good or bad, will make a huge difference to the direction your life and practice take.”


I directly nodded my head and said yes, true.

But we cannot always spend our time among our beloved spiritual friends, seeking the protection of our kind masters. We also have to deal with beings who feel no contentment and therefore act disturbed or angry or other. So I decided to avoid these but found it almost not possible. Then I also remember now the words of a beloved master: a bodhisattva is even helping in hell.
I thought, okay right, then I am not a bodhisattva! Because of tiny mini partial compassion. ( and a good quality of illusion of selfhood)
But there is another option; not avoiding anyone and remain aware of own thoughts’ grasping and by that minds' reaction from which we actually suffer ( I said this part here already). I think if we can be aware, then it is probably bit easier to be in different connection and based on this knowing how own mind works, knowing how others' mind works, which opens some insight: there is no any inherent disturbed, angry one at all. There is just different kinds of suffering. Then compassion as well is much easier.

I pay homage to the quote here above. Care by remaining aware of own mind is a fulltime job.
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

muni
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by muni » Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:16 am

To find peace in ourselves, then bring a word of peace, to harmonise, being present, impartial open...few things which jump in mind.
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

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tomschwarz
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by tomschwarz » Sun Aug 14, 2016 9:59 am

His holiness, the great master of peace, and loving kindness, the dalai lama of tibet, The Four Nobel Truths 1997, the truth of the origin of suffering:
A person's ultimate aspiration is to attain liberation from samsara, to attain spiritual freedom or enlightenment, so one of his or her principal tasks is to gain victory over the kleshas. However, there is no way that a practitioner can directly combat negative emotions and thoughts at the initial stage, so the sensible way to proceed is simply to find a way of containing the expression of negative actions of our body, speech and mind. The first step, then, is to guard our body , speech and mind from engaging in negative actions so that we don't give in to the power and domination of our negative thoughts and emotions.

Once you have achieved this first stage, you can proceed to the second stage and tackle the root cause - fundamental ignorance of which we spoke earlier. At this stage you are able to counteract the forces of the kleshas directly. Once you can do that, the third stage consists not simple of gaining victory over them, but also of rooting out all the propensities and imprints they have left within the psyche. This is why Aryadeva states in the "Four Hundred Verses on Madhyamaka" that a true spiritual aspirant must first overcome negative behavior, in the middle phase must counter any grasping at self, and in the final stage should overcome the views that bind us within the samsaric realm.
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Sun Aug 14, 2016 5:50 pm

tomschwarz wrote:hello dear friends in the illusion of selfhood,

I think (danger :smile: ) that many on this forum talk about Buddhism but at least in the forum, do not practice it. The practice of Buddhism has three interdependent areas: ethics, meditation and wisdom. The key down falls that I see on the forum are in ethics and wisdom practice.

Do you perceive that too? Or do you disagree? If you disagree, now, or with any post, how do you do so while practising the wisdom of sameness? The ethics of generousity and patience? Or do you disagree with those practice areas of Buddhism?

You can't perceive someone's ethics on this forum, almost impossible. The exception is people who post obvious trolling, regular insults etc. Those can be judged as not being above board behavior. Even then, you do not know the people. Other than that, when we try to make broad ethical judgements because we don't like the content of someone's posts, we are not being ethical at all..in fact we are doing the opposite.
Do you perceive that too? Or do you disagree? If you disagree, now, or with any post, how do you do so while practising the wisdom of sameness? The ethics of generousity and patience? Or do you disagree with those practice areas of Buddhism?
Sometimes people are unnecessarily harsh on DW. However, plenty of times it's in response to others who are being unnecessarily preachy, condescending, and self-aggrandizing. In the end, neither is fantastic behavior, but neither is worthy of some soapbox moral condemnation either.
"it must be coming from the mouthy mastermind of raunchy rapper, Johnny Dangerous”

-Jeff H.

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Ambrosius80
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Ambrosius80 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 7:38 pm

To be formally Buddhist is to take refuge in the Three Jewels; the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha.
By taking refuge in the Buddha, you are stating you trust in his superiority as a teacher and consider what he says as the truth, until you are yourself in experienced enough to know whether his teachings are correct.
By taking refuge in the Dharma, you accept the Buddha's teachings in cause and effect, rebirth, The Four Noble Truths etc. without outright abandoning any teaching or picking and choosing what you wish to believe in.
By taking refuge in the Sangha, you state your trust in the monastic community and regard them as the second highest authority in Buddhist matters.

These verses from the Dhammapada also come to mind about what is to be a Buddhist:
To do good,
To avoid evil,
To purify one's mind;
That is the teaching of all the Buddhas.
"What we have now is the best. He who can never be satisfied is a poor man, no matter how much he owns.

What you have results from karmic causes that you created, and what you'll gain hinges on karmic causes that you're creating."
-Master Sheng Yen

Tiago Simões
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Tiago Simões » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:45 pm

DJKR made an entire book devoted to this question "What makes you NOT a buddhist". He also responds to that question in this video:
https://vimeo.com/198046425

"So, what makes you a buddhist? You may not have been born in a buddhist country or to a buddhist family, you may not wear robes or shave your head, you may eat meat and idolize Eminem and Paris Hilton. That doesn't mean you cannot be a buddhist. In order to be a buddhist, you must accept that all compounded phenomena are impermanent, all emotions are pain, all things have no inherent existence, and enlightenment is beyond concepts."
- DJKR.
Then, the Licchavi Vimalakīrti spoke to the elder Śāriputra and the great disciples: “Reverends, eat of the food of the Tathāgata! It is ambrosia perfumed by the great compassion. But do not fix your minds in narrow-minded attitudes, lest you be unable to receive its gift.”

- Chapter 9, The Feast Brought by the Emanated Incarnation
The Noble Mahāyāna Sūtra “The Teaching of Vimalakīrti”

boda
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by boda » Fri Jan 27, 2017 9:23 pm

tiagolps wrote:DJKR made an entire book devoted to this question "What makes you NOT a buddhist". He also responds to that question in this video:
https://vimeo.com/198046425

"So, what makes you a buddhist? You may not have been born in a buddhist country or to a buddhist family, you may not wear robes or shave your head, you may eat meat and idolize Eminem and Paris Hilton. That doesn't mean you cannot be a buddhist. In order to be a buddhist, you must accept that all compounded phenomena are impermanent, all emotions are pain, all things have no inherent existence, and enlightenment is beyond concepts."
- DJKR.
I get all that except the 'all emotions are pain' part. Happiness for instance, is an emotion and is not painful. If the reasoning is that emotions are painful because they are impermanent then it is redundant, and perhaps misleading because you would be assigning an inherent quality to emotions.

Tiago Simões
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Tiago Simões » Fri Jan 27, 2017 9:48 pm

boda wrote:
tiagolps wrote:DJKR made an entire book devoted to this question "What makes you NOT a buddhist". He also responds to that question in this video:
https://vimeo.com/198046425

"So, what makes you a buddhist? You may not have been born in a buddhist country or to a buddhist family, you may not wear robes or shave your head, you may eat meat and idolize Eminem and Paris Hilton. That doesn't mean you cannot be a buddhist. In order to be a buddhist, you must accept that all compounded phenomena are impermanent, all emotions are pain, all things have no inherent existence, and enlightenment is beyond concepts."
- DJKR.
I get all that except the 'all emotions are pain' part. Happiness for instance, is an emotion and is not painful. If the reasoning is that emotions are painful because they are impermanent then it is redundant, and perhaps misleading because you would be assigning an inherent quality to emotions.
Again resorting to DJKR's words:
"Certain emotions, such as aggression or jealousy, we naturally regard as pain. But what about love and affection, kindness and devotion, those nice, light and lovely emotions? We don’t think of them as painful; nevertheless, they imply duality, and this means that, in the end, they are a source of pain."
Then, the Licchavi Vimalakīrti spoke to the elder Śāriputra and the great disciples: “Reverends, eat of the food of the Tathāgata! It is ambrosia perfumed by the great compassion. But do not fix your minds in narrow-minded attitudes, lest you be unable to receive its gift.”

- Chapter 9, The Feast Brought by the Emanated Incarnation
The Noble Mahāyāna Sūtra “The Teaching of Vimalakīrti”

boda
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by boda » Fri Jan 27, 2017 10:16 pm

Duality is not painful.

Tiago Simões
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Tiago Simões » Fri Jan 27, 2017 10:36 pm

boda wrote:Duality is not painful.
But leads to pain.

If I experience happiness, then logically I must also experience unhappiness, not knowing they are empty.
Then, the Licchavi Vimalakīrti spoke to the elder Śāriputra and the great disciples: “Reverends, eat of the food of the Tathāgata! It is ambrosia perfumed by the great compassion. But do not fix your minds in narrow-minded attitudes, lest you be unable to receive its gift.”

- Chapter 9, The Feast Brought by the Emanated Incarnation
The Noble Mahāyāna Sūtra “The Teaching of Vimalakīrti”

boda
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by boda » Fri Jan 27, 2017 10:40 pm

tiagolps wrote:
boda wrote:Duality is not painful.
But leads to pain.
Why? How does that work? It could just as well lead to pleasure.

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: how to be a buddhist?

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Fri Jan 27, 2017 11:00 pm

DJKR is talking about the Four Seals. I've read that book but it seems like a huge generalisation to say that all emotions are pain. I'm wondering if he would class love as an emotion, because love most certainly isn't pain.

I've seen an alternative way of phrasing the Four Seals, and the second one is 'all contaminated things are the nature of suffering' - that makes more sense to me. Anything created by self-grasping ignorance is contaminated and a true suffering.

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