Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:15 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
tobes wrote:
No, it is because I see very clearly that the religion contains a deep and systematic moral theory of virtue ethics, a political philosophy of community harmony and a fundamental soteriological message of **universal** peace.



Right, one peaceful, ethical, harmonious world under Islam.

No thanks.

N
Oh I dunno, one peaceful harmonious world under Sufism wouldn't be that bad!
:namaste:


Not into religious hegemony of any kind, including Buddhist religious hegemony.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Thu Jun 02, 2011 4:00 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
Dechen Norbu wrote:And you see, what is so applauded as the positive message of these religions is no more than basic human decency, plain humanitarian values.
Many atheists show these qualities.
That's because ALL religions are merely a projection of the human condition. ALL!

No disagreement there, mate. Religions are human constructs. Some were more polished than others.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Thu Jun 02, 2011 4:57 pm

tobes wrote:All I am asking for here is a bit of intellectual honesty and some humility: don't make strong assertions about traditions which you know nothing about.


Humm guess you've been reading my mind again and decided that I know nothing about Abrahamic religions.

As I said, I'm not an expert, but probably know a little more than the average. I was raised a Christian up to the chrism and studied a little deeper afterwards. If it wasn't for anything else that would suffice to invalidate your argument right there.

In fact, you have no idea for how long or how deep I've looked into Abrahamic traditions, so, that's another presumptuous assumption, but you've accustomed me to this sort of speech already, so no surprise here.

The fact that there are Ayatollah's (those who carry this title are experts in Islamic studies such as jurisprudence, ethics, and philosophy and usually teach in Islamic seminaries) who disagree with your interpretation of Islam should be enough to shut you up, but I've noticed that is quite an impossible task. I'm pretty sure they extensively know their tradition, much better than you who admit knowing little about it. There you have a person who knows the Islam back and forth, considered to be an expert, interpreting the Islam in the way I criticize:

“Those who know nothing of Islam pretend that Islam counsels against war. Those who say this are witless. Islam says: 'Kill all the unbelievers just as they would kill you all! Kill them, put them to the sword and scatter their armies.'”

The Ayatollah Khomeini


So, put a sock in it, for goodness sake.

I can also see the full spectrum of your humbleness right from the start:

tobes wrote:You are not showing wisdom by speaking truly, breaking through people's naivety and idealism: you are speaking out of ignorance. Now it is not my habit to go around charging people with ignorance, but on this matter, it is very clear that you do not have very much knowledge. Either historical, or theological, or anthropological, or philosophical.


Now that sounded really humble!
I'm a complete ignorant according to you, but you seem to be the one making a fool of yourself by speaking with pretentious authority about of matters you know nothing about like Social Psychology, making assertions based on other people's thoughts and intentions, affirming their qualifications without knowing exactly what they are, helplessly resorting to straw man arguments, ad hominem attacks, repetition ad nauseam and so on and so forth.
Really, it doesn't make you look good, tobes. What are your Bachelor's, Master's, or doctoral degrees on, may I ask? Just out of curiosity.

I'm sorry to say, but you present little more than poorly based opinions while I'm presenting facts, valid interpretations of them and corroborating my statements with actual quotes, testimony, historical events and what have you. You, on the other hand, seem to be living some sort of intellectual post modernist fantasy, ignoring history, facts and testimony that directly contradict your thesis.

You shallowness in the analysis of the influential role of religion in politics and social norms is astonishing as is your failure to understand the commonly unnoticed influence of religious archetypes (and this has nothing to do with Jung) in the worldview of those who grew in their midst. Yet, you artificially try to separate religion from religious violence when that violence is perpetrated by individuals whose upbringing was deeply shaped by the religions which molded their social environment.

According to you, the hundreds of violent messages contained in the Koran don't have any impact on society built upon Islamic law and values. Politics and other factors, completely apart from religion are to blame, most possibly being us westerners the root of this situation. Yet, you fail to acknowledge the definitive role of Christianism, another religion of the book, in the formation of western worldview, biasing social sciences and even physical sciences. You also don't seem to understand the social processes that lead to the neuterization of the most violent aspects of this religion, processes still far from running their course in huge parcels of the Islamic world. Your position is self defeating.

You formulate your pet theory that has no ecological validity whatsoever, no connection to reality that I can see, and try to shove it down our throats by means of repetition and ad hominem argumentation. I see one and only one flaw in that little theory of yours: it's so bad that's not even wrong.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby freethinker108 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 11:05 pm

Dechen, you are the man. Seriously. I don't think anyone can hold a candle to your fine and well reasoned arguments. I'm truly amazed at the intellectual stamina possessed by many in this group!

Just to add one small point regarding Lama Ole.

He has never perpetrated or incited any violence against Muslims. He doesn't mince words though so some choose to stereotype and castigate him, in much the same way as some on this group have been castigated, for critiquing a fascist religion. As I've said (and clarified!) way back in the early days of this thread, Lama Ole says repeatedly that one cannot be a racist and call themselves a Buddhist at the same time since racism is antithetical to the tenets of Buddhism. Maybe someone will offer an alternative interpretation to that statement but that's the way Lama Ole sees it, and there are countless references for those who care to research them, that back this up. He also takes great care to say that if someone disagrees with him about his political views that this in no way creates any obstacle towards their success with Buddhist practice. I've seen the man in action for many years and have personally heard him make these statements many many times.

Also Diamond Way Buddhism is recognized as a legitimate non-profit religious organization in the US, Canada, and other countries and also is an officially recognized religion in others such as Denmark, Greece, Austria, Poland, Hungary and Russia.

For more info check out:
http://www.lama-ole-nydahl.org/
http://www.diamondway-buddhism.org/

For those who don't already have a strong opinion about Lama Ole, I strongly suggest you go meet the man and make up your own mind.

Cheers, and again, WOW you all are amazing!

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby tobes » Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:10 am

Dechen Norbu wrote:
tobes wrote:All I am asking for here is a bit of intellectual honesty and some humility: don't make strong assertions about traditions which you know nothing about.


Humm guess you've been reading my mind again and decided that I know nothing about Abrahamic religions.

As I said, I'm not an expert, but probably know a little more than the average. I was raised a Christian up to the chrism and studied a little deeper afterwards. If it wasn't for anything else that would suffice to invalidate your argument right there.

In fact, you have no idea for how long or how deep I've looked into Abrahamic traditions, so, that's another presumptuous assumption, but you've accustomed me to this sort of speech already, so no surprise here.

The fact that there are Ayatollah's (those who carry this title are experts in Islamic studies such as jurisprudence, ethics, and philosophy and usually teach in Islamic seminaries) who disagree with your interpretation of Islam should be enough to shut you up, but I've noticed that is quite an impossible task. I'm pretty sure they extensively know their tradition, much better than you who admit knowing little about it. There you have a person who knows the Islam back and forth, considered to be an expert, interpreting the Islam in the way I criticize:

“Those who know nothing of Islam pretend that Islam counsels against war. Those who say this are witless. Islam says: 'Kill all the unbelievers just as they would kill you all! Kill them, put them to the sword and scatter their armies.'”

The Ayatollah Khomeini


So, put a sock in it, for goodness sake.

I can also see the full spectrum of your humbleness right from the start:

tobes wrote:You are not showing wisdom by speaking truly, breaking through people's naivety and idealism: you are speaking out of ignorance. Now it is not my habit to go around charging people with ignorance, but on this matter, it is very clear that you do not have very much knowledge. Either historical, or theological, or anthropological, or philosophical.


Now that sounded really humble!
I'm a complete ignorant according to you, but you seem to be the one making a fool of yourself by speaking with pretentious authority about of matters you know nothing about like Social Psychology, making assertions based on other people's thoughts and intentions, affirming their qualifications without knowing exactly what they are, helplessly resorting to straw man arguments, ad hominem attacks, repetition ad nauseam and so on and so forth.
Really, it doesn't make you look good, tobes. What are your Bachelor's, Master's, or doctoral degrees on, may I ask? Just out of curiosity.

I'm sorry to say, but you present little more than poorly based opinions while I'm presenting facts, valid interpretations of them and corroborating my statements with actual quotes, testimony, historical events and what have you. You, on the other hand, seem to be living some sort of intellectual post modernist fantasy, ignoring history, facts and testimony that directly contradict your thesis.

You shallowness in the analysis of the influential role of religion in politics and social norms is astonishing as is your failure to understand the commonly unnoticed influence of religious archetypes (and this has nothing to do with Jung) in the worldview of those who grew in their midst. Yet, you artificially try to separate religion from religious violence when that violence is perpetrated by individuals whose upbringing was deeply shaped by the religions which molded their social environment.

According to you, the hundreds of violent messages contained in the Koran don't have any impact on society built upon Islamic law and values. Politics and other factors, completely apart from religion are to blame, most possibly being us westerners the root of this situation. Yet, you fail to acknowledge the definitive role of Christianism, another religion of the book, in the formation of western worldview, biasing social sciences and even physical sciences. You also don't seem to understand the social processes that lead to the neuterization of the most violent aspects of this religion, processes still far from running their course in huge parcels of the Islamic world. Your position is self defeating.

You formulate your pet theory that has no ecological validity whatsoever, no connection to reality that I can see, and try to shove it down our throats by means of repetition and ad hominem argumentation. I see one and only one flaw in that little theory of yours: it's so bad that's not even wrong.


Ad hominem?

That's the pot calling the kettle black. I'm not sure I've ever before encountered such persistently rude and personal attacks of my position, than the manner, tone and content of your engagement with my thoughts on this matter.

I'm sure you'll have a few Lama Ole supporters convinced of your devastating argumentation, but all I detect is intense sentiment and a complete failure to engage with any of the arguments I have raised against you.

You're not an expert, but you were raised Christian and are now Buddhist, and have found a quote from the Ayatolla: wow, that's a very well founded position to be making assertions about Islam.

I do not in any way retract my assertion that you are ignorant of Islam: have you studied it? If not, well, then you are ignorant of it.

You want to know my educational attainments? Why? Deal with the arguments themselves, not the person who makes them. It is you who keep taking this to the locus of the personal. It is you who ridicule and belittle people who do not agree with your view.

Ad hominem! Jeez, that is really, really rich.

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby tobes » Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:48 am

Dechen, if you could do me the honour of at least answering one question which I have phrased numerous times, and which you have persistently ignored:

Why do you think the Dalai-lama is wrong on this issue?

Not me, not the bunch of bleeding heart post-modernist apologists. The Dalai-Lama.

I posted you the links. Here they are again:

http://www.phayul.com/news/article.aspx?id=28612

http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/front/a ... 2003303093

http://www.whymuhammad.com/de/Contents.aspx?AID=5381

Please respond, with cogent arguments, to why you think the Dalai-Lama is in error.

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Malcolm » Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:01 am

tobes wrote:
Why do you think the Dalai-lama is wrong on this issue?



HHDL is about as expert on Islam as Dechen is by your standards outlined above. You just happen to like what he says.

N
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

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there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby tobes » Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:10 am

Namdrol wrote:
tobes wrote:
Why do you think the Dalai-lama is wrong on this issue?



HHDL is about as expert on Islam as Dechen is by your standards outlined above. You just happen to like what he says.

N


Is Dechan going to Harvard to meet with top scholars of Islam? Having conversations about Islamic jurisprudence?

No?

Then there is a pretty manifest difference in terms of knowledge.

This may be more speculative, but I would say in terms of insight as well.

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Malcolm » Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:14 am

tobes wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
tobes wrote:
Why do you think the Dalai-lama is wrong on this issue?



HHDL is about as expert on Islam as Dechen is by your standards outlined above. You just happen to like what he says.

N


Is Dechan going to Harvard to meet with top scholars of Islam? Having conversations about Islamic jurisprudence?

No?

Then there is a pretty manifest difference in terms of knowledge.

This may be more speculative, but I would say in terms of insight as well.

:anjali:


Nothing that Dechen cannot also read.

I have read many books about Islam. Virtually all sympathetic or written by scholars fluent in Arabic. I have many friends who are ex-Muslims, Iranian and otherwise.

Their attitude about Islam is much different than yours. They regard the religion of their birth with horror.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 3:00 am

tobes, HHDL is both a wise religious and political leader. Do I need to say more? Were he to publicly criticize the Islam, like the Pope did, and similar reactions would be expected. Plus, the Chinese government would make a feast of any politically less correct statement made by HH. The Trimondi would have a freaking orgasm! I have no idea about his private opinion regarding the Islam. Whatever it may be, it's not my concern, even with all the respect I have for HH.

By the way, do you need me to provide more quotes about Islamic experts saying similar things to Khomeini? By now you should know I can (and did, but apparently you didn't read them). Why keep embarrassing yourself? I was not born Buddhist, so choosing a path was quite a quest for several years in my life. I read more books on religion, took more advice from religious experts and attended more lectures on religious matters than I read newspapers in my life. Sadly, by painting me as an ignorant you miss the mark. But hey, that's your opinion. You're entitled to it.

Yes, I would like to know your credentials. You are very vague, so when you say something like "Hegel + Weber + universalised psychology of empire", I would like to know if you have some expertise in these matters. Regarding the whole, the arguments you presented, that weren't many let me add, were refuted over and over again, so what are you saying?
On the other hand, the only thing you refuted was the straw man you created, not my arguments.

And are you trying to use an argument from authority on me? You should know better by now, tobes. I'll not fall for that rhetoric fallacy. HHDL is not a legitimate authority on Islam, so any claim HH decides to make about it must not be read as fruit of expertise, thus not necessarily accurate.

I can talk about many positive passages in the Islam. I even placed a damn text about a good way of living it, for goodness sake. You missed it too, or is this again a case of selective reading? Fortunately I'm in a position which allows me to criticize the pernicious parts of its message without endangering the cause of Tibet.

I see HH opinions more like fruits of a kind heart and a wise mind combined with the very delicate political situation he finds himself in. HH can see the positive aspects in nearly anything. Focusing on them is very wise for someone in his position. Not doing so would be catastrophic because of the general reaction from the Islamic world, the opportunistic gains from the government of the PRC and all the noise whiners like you would make. So yes, HHDL is indeed very wise.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 4:10 am

And just because you decided to quote HHDL, I'll quote him too:
"I love President George W Bush."

He went on to add how he and the US President instantly struck a chord in their first meeting unlike politicians who take a while to develop close ties.


Sorry, I don't love President Bush. I think the guy is an asshole and I really don't care if HHDL loves him. Probable HH feels loving kindness for every sentient being. The fact that HHDL loves Bush doesn't make him a nice guy. I'd say he's responsible for many avoidable deaths and that makes him close to a murderer.

HHDL is also a political leader, for goodness sake! If you forget that, you're even more naive than I assumed.
The whole context of those declarations required the approach he took. The whole situation he is in requires him to do so, for the sake of others, not himself.

Sacrificial slaughter was and still remains a problematic area between Buddhism and Islam. Was it to expect that HHDL would refer such a thing, while he vehemently condemns such behavior? Can you imagine HH saying something like "To all Muslims of the world, please stop slaughtering animals for religious purposes!" Of course not! That doesn't mean he agrees with slaughter.

I'm sure HHDL wouldn't agree with all those violent passages from the Islamic trilogy, Koran, Hadith and Sira. But focusing on an interpretation that excludes those messages is a skillful way for a man in HH position to condemn them indirectly. If you say that the Islam is peaceful, you are saying that those passages can't be taken seriously. However, that doesn't mean that every Muslim agrees with HH, as shown previously.

Besides, I'm under the impression that nowadays HHDL is informed mostly by moderate Islamic thinkers which is good, although some of them have connections to very problematic organizations like the Muslim Brotherhood; I wonder if HH knows that.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby tobes » Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:15 am

Dechen Norbu wrote:tobes, HHDL is both a wise religious and political leader. Do I need to say more? Were he to publicly criticize the Islam, like the Pope did, and similar reactions would be expected. Plus, the Chinese government would make a feast of any politically less correct statement made by HH. The Trimondi would have a freaking orgasm! I have no idea about his private opinion regarding the Islam. Whatever it may be, it's not my concern, even with all the respect I have for HH.

By the way, do you need me to provide more quotes about Islamic experts saying similar things to Khomeini? By now you should know I can (and did, but apparently you didn't read them). Why keep embarrassing yourself? I was not born Buddhist, so choosing a path was quite a quest for several years in my life. I read more books on religion, took more advice from religious experts and attended more lectures on religious matters than I read newspapers in my life. Sadly, by painting me as an ignorant you miss the mark. But hey, that's your opinion. You're entitled to it.

Yes, I would like to know your credentials. You are very vague, so when you say something like "Hegel + Weber + universalised psychology of empire", I would like to know if you have some expertise in these matters. Regarding the whole, the arguments you presented, that weren't many let me add, were refuted over and over again, so what are you saying?
On the other hand, the only thing you refuted was the straw man you created, not my arguments.

And are you trying to use an argument from authority on me? You should know better by now, tobes. I'll not fall for that rhetoric fallacy. HHDL is not a legitimate authority on Islam, so any claim HH decides to make about it must not be read as fruit of expertise, thus not necessarily accurate.

I can talk about many positive passages in the Islam. I even placed a damn text about a good way of living it, for goodness sake. You missed it too, or is this again a case of selective reading? Fortunately I'm in a position which allows me to criticize the pernicious parts of its message without endangering the cause of Tibet.

I see HH opinions more like fruits of a kind heart and a wise mind combined with the very delicate political situation he finds himself in. HH can see the positive aspects in nearly anything. Focusing on them is very wise for someone in his position. Not doing so would be catastrophic because of the general reaction from the Islamic world, the opportunistic gains from the government of the PRC and all the noise whiners like you would make. So yes, HHDL is indeed very wise.


Well actually this about the best argument you have produced: that the Dalai-Lama is just being politically expedient with his claim that Islam is fundamentally about peace and love. I think that there are good enough reasons to think that.....you could cache it out in terms of upaya.

Ultimately, I do not agree, but I am enough of a pluralist to respect your right to have a well formed opinion. It would be nice if you also extended this right to other people.

I'm not justifying the Dalai-Lama's position as one of authority over you, I simply think it's intriguing that well versed Buddhists would find Lama Ole's position on Islam more convincing, more nuanced, truer and better founded the Dalai-Lama's. So I asked you to respond to that.

For the record, one of things I teach at university is political philosophy, and one of the things I have an academic background in is social theory. So I know about Weber's thesis about Calvanism and the spirit of capitalism, which a number of people on this thread seem to buy without any critical reflection. I know about the grave limitations to Hegel's theory of history. I know that one cannot posit some universal psychological instinct for Empire on billions of minds which one has never encountered. And I know about social psychology, although I come at this from a much more psychoanalytic angle than you do.

But it's not about what I know, or what my credentials are, or how educated I am or am not: it's about having a little bit of respect and humility for things which lay outside of our domain of knowledge and experience.

That's really all I'm pushing for here....and frankly, it is not such an untenable position.

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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:28 am

Well, well, I'm under the impression that we're having some parallel topics to undermine a few opinions me and others have been expressing in this thread by our friend mudra.
First you debate me recurring to red herrings like appeal to emotion with that question about your past tainting you and so on and so forth and now you start parallel campaigns instead of directly writing your disagreement here, where this debate is happening? People read those messages, are fooled into accepting your fallacious conclusions and will have a biased reading of this debate, is it?
Do you realize that both actions are classic ways to manipulate opinion and not very wholesome? You are surprising me. I wonder if you realize the problems with your reasoning or you are unaware of them.

Anyway, let's see those new threads you placed in the Dharmic-free-for-all subforum:

The first I will write about is called "don't let yourself be "embedded". In my opinion, if we are to assume this wonderfully woven post is a reaction of sorts to this thread, we should also note that it contains several problems. This means, loosely, that being embedded is a bad thing and if you disagree with the conclusion mudra posits at the end you have let yourself be embedded. However, we will see that this is a faulty conclusion.

mudra wrote:For as long as we are in a samsaric state, it is always going to be a challenge to think straight. False conceptions
are the stuff of modern life it seems, perhaps more subtly so than in the past. Frankly a lot of people don't even realise that they have bought into subtle or not so subtle media campaigns.

For example, think "embedded". When I was an active photojournalist in what seems another lifetime, admitting to being 'embedded' would have been a cause for shame. Now journalists seem to be proud to 'embedded'. That in itself is damning, let alone sensationalist sound bites that buy and sell the perspective of state sponsored terrorism (eg the Weapons of Mass Distraction spiel, etc).

I have a lot of 'moral' (mainly western to be honest) friends who thought assassinating Osama and dumping him at sea, was totally justified - unlike Mladic who allegedly mass murdered thousands of Muslims (perhaps more individuals than Osama bin Laden was allegedly directly responsible for) but gets to have a trial at the Hague. Mladic too was hunted for years. Is there a fundamental difference? Osama became a much more hated figure than Mladic, yet look at the numbers. Please note the term alleged, because there is in modern jurisprudence the concept that people need to be proven to be guilty, no matter how much evidence there appears to be prior to verification.

The power of the media over the minds of the masses runs quite deep, much deeper than most people who like to think of themselves as educated would like to admit, giving us a kind of unfounded conviction. I worked in media for years, and still do the odd assignment (documentary/editorial). Though war wasn't my "gig" I have covered it a little and a few scenes of mass violence. Most people have just watched this kind of thing on their tv screens. It's different when you see how things actually unfold (and have to try and wash the blood off your shoes after covering the story).

I think as Buddhists we all really need to focus clearly on all aspects of cause and effect when we view samsaric events unfolding around us. It's all to easy to claim this or that group or person is inherently bad, yet we would be letting the Buddha Dharma down by not acknowledging the complexity of these (samsaric) situations


Seems a perfectly well reasoned post, but let's look closer, because if this is a reaction to my opinions, I will make a few comments.

Now, you start this text presenting positions we are all prone to agree with and end with a debatable sentence that doesn't follow from the previous. That's a rhetorical maneuver to induce people who are agreeing with your previous statements to automatically agree with your conclusion while it in fact it doesn't result from them.

Also, it's noteworthy that according to the Buddhist doctrine to the premises that there isn't anything inherently bad and that if something can be said to be bad, it also can be said to be complex, doesn't follow the conclusion that classifying something as bad is incorrect.
Osama Bin Laden wasn't inherently bad, the reasons why he became a terrorist are very complex and yet we can rightly say that he was a bad person. The same goes for Mladic.

It goes without saying that in this thread nobody says that a certain group or person is inherently bad, so if this post comes as a reaction to this debate, you also have a straw man there. It's a critic to an intellectual standing point that I've seen nobody supporting yet.

Now, the following fallacy is more subtle.
When you present those who felt killing OBL was justified as being doubtfully moral, thus presenting such adjective between apostrophes ('moral'), knowing that you are in a Buddhist board and most Buddhists disagree with such POV, and in the end sentence drawn your conclusion, you establish a relation between them and those who, according to you, consider groups or persons bad without taking account for the complexities involved, meaning me or those who in this debate expressed similar opinions. That is called poisoning the well and is a logical fallacy where adverse information about a target is pre-emptively presented with the intention of discrediting what the target person is about to say, thus trying to make your conclusion unassailable, since those who are likely to disagree with it perhaps share something in common with those who found OBL death justifiable. It may work for those less cautious readers, but not for someone who has some familiarity with rhetorics.


The next topic is called "Abramic religions evolve..."
They do, to protect themselves, just not because of the text you present us.

mudra wrote:Thought this was kind of interesting...

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn2 ... ution.htm


Well, the fact that many Islamic thinkers claim the divine origin of the Koran because it predicts scientific facts that couldn't be known at the prophet's time is nothing new neither shows some sort of evolution. Saying the theory of evolutions is not problematic for the Islam goes along with this line of claims.
I would call it religious adaptation so that Islam doesn't fall in discredit as science progresses.
We all know who got the wrong end of the stick when the Bible clashed with Darwin's theory of evolution...

OK, that's it.

Best wishes.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby tobes » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:37 am

Dechen Norbu wrote:Well, well, I'm under the impression that we're having some parallel topics to undermine a few opinions me and others have been expressing in this thread by our friend mudra.
First you debate me recurring to red herrings like appeal to emotion with that question about your past tainting you and so on and so forth and now you start parallel campaigns instead of directly writing your disagreement here, where this debate is happening? People read those messages, are fooled into accepting your fallacious conclusions and will have a biased reading of this debate, is it?
Do you realize that both actions are classic ways to manipulate opinion and not very wholesome? You are surprising me. I wonder if you realize the problems with your reasoning or you are unaware of them.

Anyway, let's see those new threads you placed in the Dharmic-free-for-all subforum:

The first I will write about is called "don't let yourself be "embedded". In my opinion, if we are to assume this wonderfully woven post is a reaction of sorts to this thread, we should also note that it contains several problems. This means, loosely, that being embedded is a bad thing and if you disagree with the conclusion mudra posits at the end you have let yourself be embedded. However, we will see that this is a faulty conclusion.

mudra wrote:For as long as we are in a samsaric state, it is always going to be a challenge to think straight. False conceptions
are the stuff of modern life it seems, perhaps more subtly so than in the past. Frankly a lot of people don't even realise that they have bought into subtle or not so subtle media campaigns.

For example, think "embedded". When I was an active photojournalist in what seems another lifetime, admitting to being 'embedded' would have been a cause for shame. Now journalists seem to be proud to 'embedded'. That in itself is damning, let alone sensationalist sound bites that buy and sell the perspective of state sponsored terrorism (eg the Weapons of Mass Distraction spiel, etc).

I have a lot of 'moral' (mainly western to be honest) friends who thought assassinating Osama and dumping him at sea, was totally justified - unlike Mladic who allegedly mass murdered thousands of Muslims (perhaps more individuals than Osama bin Laden was allegedly directly responsible for) but gets to have a trial at the Hague. Mladic too was hunted for years. Is there a fundamental difference? Osama became a much more hated figure than Mladic, yet look at the numbers. Please note the term alleged, because there is in modern jurisprudence the concept that people need to be proven to be guilty, no matter how much evidence there appears to be prior to verification.

The power of the media over the minds of the masses runs quite deep, much deeper than most people who like to think of themselves as educated would like to admit, giving us a kind of unfounded conviction. I worked in media for years, and still do the odd assignment (documentary/editorial). Though war wasn't my "gig" I have covered it a little and a few scenes of mass violence. Most people have just watched this kind of thing on their tv screens. It's different when you see how things actually unfold (and have to try and wash the blood off your shoes after covering the story).

I think as Buddhists we all really need to focus clearly on all aspects of cause and effect when we view samsaric events unfolding around us. It's all to easy to claim this or that group or person is inherently bad, yet we would be letting the Buddha Dharma down by not acknowledging the complexity of these (samsaric) situations


Seems a perfectly well reasoned post, but let's look closer, because if this is a reaction to my opinions, I will make a few comments.

Now, you start this text presenting positions we are all prone to agree with and end with a debatable sentence that doesn't follow from the previous. That's a rhetorical maneuver to induce people who are agreeing with your previous statements to automatically agree with your conclusion while it in fact it doesn't result from them.

Also, it's noteworthy that according to the Buddhist doctrine to the premises that there isn't anything inherently bad and that if something can be said to be bad, it also can be said to be complex, doesn't follow the conclusion that classifying something as bad is incorrect.
Osama Bin Laden wasn't inherently bad, the reasons why he became a terrorist are very complex and yet we can rightly say that he was a bad person. The same goes for Mladic.

It goes without saying that in this thread nobody says that a certain group or person is inherently bad, so if this post comes as a reaction to this debate, you also have a straw man there. It's a critic to an intellectual standing point that I've seen nobody supporting yet.

Now, the following fallacy is more subtle.
When you present those who felt killing OBL was justified as being doubtfully moral, thus presenting such adjective between apostrophes ("moral"), knowing that you are in a Buddhist board and most Buddhists disagree with such POV, and in the end sentence drawn your conclusion, you establish a relation between them and those who, according to you, consider groups or persons bad without taking account for the complexities involved, meaning me or those who in this debate expressed similar opinions. That is called poisoning the well and is a logical fallacy where adverse information about a target is pre-emptively presented with the intention of discrediting what the target person is about to say, thus trying to make your conclusion unassailable, since those who are likely to disagree with it perhaps share something in common with those who found OBL death justifiable. It may work for those less cautious readers, but not for someone who has some familiarity with rhetorics.


The next topic is called "Abramic religions evolve..."
They do, to protect themselves, just not because of the text you present us.

mudra wrote:Thought this was kind of interesting...

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn2 ... ution.htm


Well, the fact that many Islamic thinkers claim the divine origin of the Koran because it predicts scientific facts that couldn't be known at the prophet's time is nothing new neither shows some sort of evolution. Saying the theory of evolutions is not problematic for the Islam goes along with this line of claims.
I would call it religious adaptation so that Islam doesn't fall in discredit as science progresses.
We all know who got the wrong end of the stick when the Bible clashed with Darwin's theory of evolution...

OK, that's it.

Best wishes.


Dechan, my interest in the other thread is something I have been pursuing for many years.

If you want to chase me around the forum, imputing things upon me so that you have more fodder to attack with, fine, that's your prerogative.

I'm not really interested in responding anymore though.

Thanks for your interesting thoughts.

Let's leave it here.

:anjali:
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:38 am

tobes wrote:
Dechen Norbu wrote:tobes, HHDL is both a wise religious and political leader. Do I need to say more? Were he to publicly criticize the Islam, like the Pope did, and similar reactions would be expected. Plus, the Chinese government would make a feast of any politically less correct statement made by HH. The Trimondi would have a freaking orgasm! I have no idea about his private opinion regarding the Islam. Whatever it may be, it's not my concern, even with all the respect I have for HH.

By the way, do you need me to provide more quotes about Islamic experts saying similar things to Khomeini? By now you should know I can (and did, but apparently you didn't read them). Why keep embarrassing yourself? I was not born Buddhist, so choosing a path was quite a quest for several years in my life. I read more books on religion, took more advice from religious experts and attended more lectures on religious matters than I read newspapers in my life. Sadly, by painting me as an ignorant you miss the mark. But hey, that's your opinion. You're entitled to it.

Yes, I would like to know your credentials. You are very vague, so when you say something like "Hegel + Weber + universalised psychology of empire", I would like to know if you have some expertise in these matters. Regarding the whole, the arguments you presented, that weren't many let me add, were refuted over and over again, so what are you saying?
On the other hand, the only thing you refuted was the straw man you created, not my arguments.

And are you trying to use an argument from authority on me? You should know better by now, tobes. I'll not fall for that rhetoric fallacy. HHDL is not a legitimate authority on Islam, so any claim HH decides to make about it must not be read as fruit of expertise, thus not necessarily accurate.

I can talk about many positive passages in the Islam. I even placed a damn text about a good way of living it, for goodness sake. You missed it too, or is this again a case of selective reading? Fortunately I'm in a position which allows me to criticize the pernicious parts of its message without endangering the cause of Tibet.

I see HH opinions more like fruits of a kind heart and a wise mind combined with the very delicate political situation he finds himself in. HH can see the positive aspects in nearly anything. Focusing on them is very wise for someone in his position. Not doing so would be catastrophic because of the general reaction from the Islamic world, the opportunistic gains from the government of the PRC and all the noise whiners like you would make. So yes, HHDL is indeed very wise.


Well actually this about the best argument you have produced: that the Dalai-Lama is just being politically expedient with his claim that Islam is fundamentally about peace and love. I think that there are good enough reasons to think that.....you could cache it out in terms of upaya.

Ultimately, I do not agree, but I am enough of a pluralist to respect your right to have a well formed opinion. It would be nice if you also extended this right to other people.

I'm not justifying the Dalai-Lama's position as one of authority over you, I simply think it's intriguing that well versed Buddhists would find Lama Ole's position on Islam more convincing, more nuanced, truer and better founded the Dalai-Lama's. So I asked you to respond to that.

For the record, one of things I teach at university is political philosophy, and one of the things I have an academic background in is social theory. So I know about Weber's thesis about Calvanism and the spirit of capitalism, which a number of people on this thread seem to buy without any critical reflection. I know about the grave limitations to Hegel's theory of history. I know that one cannot posit some universal psychological instinct for Empire on billions of minds which one has never encountered. And I know about social psychology, although I come at this from a much more psychoanalytic angle than you do.

But it's not about what I know, or what my credentials are, or how educated I am or am not: it's about having a little bit of respect and humility for things which lay outside of our domain of knowledge and experience.

That's really all I'm pushing for here....and frankly, it is not such an untenable position.

:anjali:


I credit HHDL position on Islam similarly to his position on Bush.
The fact that HH claims to love Bush doesn't make me think he is an adorable person.
The fact that HH claims that Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance doesn't make me think that such is the true nature of Islam everywhere, shared by everyone.

Thanks for giving me your credentials, tobes. There are a few more points I want to make about this last post of yours, but tomorrow is another day. It's awfully late here.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:22 pm

Anybody here order a murderous, fascist, psychotic, Buddhist fanatic?
Bloody White Baron by James Palmer, 2008, Basic Books
This is the extraordinary story of the Russian nobleman who became the last Khan of Mongolia and his quest for Buddhist redemption. A minor aristocrat by birth, he rose through the ranks of the counterrevolutionary White Russian army to briefly conquer Mongolia. However, it was the Baron's motivation that distinguished him from any number of sword-wielding European contempories - he mounted this campaign in the name of Buddhism.

Roman Ungern von Sternberg was an Austrian born Baltic aristocrat, a very violent, headstrong youth posted to the wilds of Siberia and Mongolia before the First World War. After the Bolshevik revolution, the Baron - now in command of a lethally effective rabble of cavalrymen - conquered Mongolia, the last time in history a country was seized by an army mounted on horseback. He slaughtered everyone he suspected of irreligion or of being a Jew. In a short-lived but violent campaign to win a kingdom from which to overthrow the Bolsheviks, Ungern sought to reestablish a monarchial order that he would follow to the Pure Land or death.

This book is an epic recreation of a forgotten episode in history.

"The Bloody White Baron exhumes a historical figure who ended up as a casualty of his own grand scheme: a man who dreamed up a new world order and then chased it across the desolate steppes of northern Asia only to meet his own miserable demise…The Baron's alchemic mix of spirituality and anticommunist passion inspired his storming of Mongolia. He assumed the role of Shambalan saviour from the north, charging to defend the Bogd Khan - Mongolia's Buddhist political figurehead - against the recently vanquished Chinese and growing Bolshevik and Japanese threats…Baron Ungern-Sternberg was undoubtedly psychotic...As the Baron's story unfolds, the margins of both history and human psychology take centre stage in a work that unravels more comfortable accounts of modern nationhood and spirituality." Tricycle.

:namaste:
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Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby username » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:15 pm

Sunnis have Grand Muftis (as in Al-Azhar of Cairo which dates back only to Ottomans) and Shiites have Marja (Ayatollah is a recent historic invention & honorific title & the few grand ones are Marja). There are no justified doctrinal base for either priesthoods except popular and power based (Focoultian) historic arisings. Reason is that Islam was set up by Muhammad to be against the institution of priesthood as in Christianity and Judaism but as expected they took over anyway. Now the main point, anybody interested in violence in the name of Buddhism should forget the inventive old monasteries of China defending themselvesagainst bandits/warlords or Tibetan internal clashes but should study the militarization of monasteries during the long Japanese civil war. But to compare Buddhism's history on violence with Islam or Christianity is extremely out of proportion in numbers, global range, duration, extent of doctrinal support, systematized implemented framework and other aspects. It's like saying Stalin killed 10 or 20 million directly or by policy and Mao 60 to over a 100 million, but as governor of Texas W didn't stop but publicly supported several executions.

As I said the overwhelming majority of Muslims and Christians are very very nice people and our aim should be to support the progressive reformist liberal factions within Muslims who try to take Islam back to it's enlightened era as well as modernize it, against fundamentalists & literalists who try to take it back to it's original barbarisms. Even all the Sufi orders that have been the target of barbarians for a thousand years from Pakistan to Morocco are now under various forms of pressure to mass persecution and killings depending on the country. The problem with Islam, as opposed to Judeo-Christian doctrines it bastardized, is that it arose out of the violent barbaric tribal customs of primitive ancient Arabia. Hence it's codifications of violent conquest, child abuse, massacres, light or heavy or near death or to death lashings, amputations, beheadings, throwing off heights, burning live people in pits, stonings, taking out eyes and more which in all cases still occur though some only in a few cases. It's completely out of proportion to compare it's doctrines and track record, or that of Christianity, with Buddhism. We just have to help the good Muslims and Christians win over the murderous ones, as in populous Malaysia in the last decade, as there are billions of them in our world.
Dzogchen masters I know say: 1)Buddhist religion essence is Dzogchen 2)Religions are positive by intent/fruit 3)Any method's OK unless: breaking Dzogchen vows, mixed as syncretic (Milanese Soup) 4)Don't join mandalas of opponents of Dalai Lama/Padmasambhava: False Deity inventors by encouraging victims 5)Don't debate Ati with others 6)Don't discuss Ati practices online 7) A master told his old disciple: no one's to discuss his teaching with some others on a former forum nor mention him. Publicity's OK, questions are asked from masters/set teachers in person/email/non-public forums~Best wishes
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:22 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:Anybody here order a murderous, fascist, psychotic, Buddhist fanatic?
Bloody White Baron by James Palmer, 2008, Basic Books


And the point you make with that story is, Greg? That there are murderous, fascist, psychotic, Buddhist fanatics? I'm pretty sure there are and pretty more recent than that fellow. One just needs to think about the murders surrounding the Shugden affair. The thing is that the scriptures do not support that sort of behavior, much the opposite. This is why Shugden practice was officially banned by all the schools of Tibetan Buddhism, since it promoted hatred and sectarianism. On the other hand, in the Abrahamic religions you have countless passages supporting such actions. Gladly, many chose to disregard them. I never saw them officially banned by all sects and churches though and that's a shame.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:27 pm

tobes wrote:Dechan, my interest in the other thread is something I have been pursuing for many years.

If you want to chase me around the forum, imputing things upon me so that you have more fodder to attack with, fine, that's your prerogative.

I'm not really interested in responding anymore though.

Thanks for your interesting thoughts.

Let's leave it here.


I'm not chasing you tobes, for goodness sake. Those are not your posts, so I think you may be overreacting a little. Did you notice I never even mentioned any of your posts in those threads? In fact, i didn't even read them, so I don't know what are you talking about.
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Re: Lama Ole Nydahl, what do you think?

Postby kirtu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 8:47 pm

Namdrol wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
tobes wrote:
No, it is because I see very clearly that the religion contains a deep and systematic moral theory of virtue ethics, a political philosophy of community harmony and a fundamental soteriological message of **universal** peace.



Right, one peaceful, ethical, harmonious world under Islam.

No thanks.

N[/quote

Not into religious hegemony of any kind, including Buddhist religious hegemony.


But don't you think that these claims of hegemony are serious exaggerations? After all, Christianity is no longer trying to take over the world. Why do you think that Islam in general has that as a serious goal? Most Muslims these days don't even go through the perfunctory drill of asking you to convert to Islam.

Aside from terrorists (and I mean people in arms training with the intention of engaging in violent operations against other people or people who have done so) where do you find examples of Muslims trying to conquer the world? Most Muslims I met in Germany just wanted to know where a particular bar was (these were Turkish young and younger men). Only one Muslim that I've known intimately has ever asked me to convert and this was this perfunctory obligation thing. It wasn't serious and it never came up again. That;s makes two Muslims out of hundreds I've known in the US and Europe who asked me to convert (the other was a cab driver who was trying to get me to read the Koran - and he didn't come out and pop the question either so it almost doesn't count - it's a good idea to read the Koran as people should be familiar with the important world religious texts and their interpretations).

A few years ago there was this French-Algerian movie set in Paris. I thought it was somewhat anti-Muslim because it cast most of the religious Muslims as charlatans out to manipulate people. It also cast the local French politicians in a very negative light. In one of the final scenes the local French politician and the head Muslim religious manipulator worked together to thwart the neighborhood's dance party (yes, in the end this was a European song and dance movie just with everyone singing in French and some Arabic). Fortunately the party was saved by the local French-Algerian cab-driver/singer and almost everyone came out and had a good time: all the community including grandmothers, the Imam, and local non-Algerian French people (we used to make films like this in the US too, just rearrange the details and voila!). So where were the nefarious Muslims in this film? You could count them on one hand and they were out to use the Algerian neighborhood in Paris that they had grown up in. The majority of people just dismissed them outright. Same with the devious French politicians.

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