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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Kim O'Hara wrote:When we're comparing Buddhism with Christianity, explicitly or implicitly, we should take care to compare like with like.
I appreciate your thoughts. However, I was not thinking about Christianity at all when I wrote my posts in this thread. Christianity has no meaning at for me, personally. It was only Johnny Dangerous who brought up the subject of Christianity.
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Seeing wickedness in the world and having reason to turn away from it is hardly a unique message to Buddhism, read the Bible sometime for instance lol.
Good point. lol
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I believe Buddhism is not negative because of the essential message of peace, compassion and happiness that it teaches.
Let a man not seek for the respect of his peers, let him seek wisdom.
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Luke wrote:I heard someone make this statement:
"Buddhism denies the value and existence of life."
How would you reply to this statement?
I know that this is technically incorrect, but I do feel that Buddhism often presents itself in a way which can seem overly depressing and negative to most people.
Buddhism has had a long history of being incorrectly labeled as "nihilism" by outsiders.
Buddhism correctly teaches and understands that all of samsara, all of it, is suffering. Samsara is a great slaughterhouse where all of our loved ones and ourselves, will inevitably meet our deaths. Samsara is a place where there can be no last happiness from experiences. People do not like to acknowledge these facts and want to impute some degree of happiness upon samsara. This is inevitable and the teachings in fact say that people will do this. The reason people do this is because they grasp at pleasure and think that they find happiness in pleasure and reject displeasure. People want to see samsara as a mixture of pleasure and some small degree of unpleasantness and furthermore they want to make the unpleasantness as small as possible. In other words, they want the existence of the god realms and actively grasp at thaat and try to achieve it in many different ways.
This view, this activity, is unrealistic. This is the actual problem. The reality is, as I mentioned, that literally all of samsara is actually suffering.
The main reply I can think of is that Buddhism finds value in life as a result of its concept that all sentient beings have buddha nature.
Buddhism says that all sentient beings are of infinite value because they have Buddha Nature and can actively experience and realize that Buddha Nature. However we are enmeshed totally in a slaughterhouse and can really do nothing about that environment.
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes
"Even if you practice only for an hour a day with faith and inspiration, good qualities will steadily increase. Regular practice makes it easy to transform your mind. From seeing only relative truth, you will eventually reach a profound certainty in the meaning of absolute truth."
Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
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