The matter of faith

No holds barred discussion on the Buddhadharma. Argue about rebirth, karma, commentarial interpretations etc. Be nice to each other.

The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:33 am

Namdrol wrote:If you are a Buddhist, then an appeal to the authority of the Buddha' teaching, as recorded in hundreds of suttas, is entirely appropriate.


Ironically, not according the the Kalama sutra!

Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing; nor upon tradition; nor upon rumor; nor upon what is in a scripture; nor upon surmise; nor upon an axiom; nor upon specious reasoning; nor upon a bias towards a notion that has been pondered over; nor upon another's seeming ability; nor upon the consideration, 'The monk is our teacher.'


Of course, ignoring the sutras, and using reason alone, it's still not appropriate to appeal to authority.

Appealing to authority is something you do as a very last resort, when you can't possibly work things out for yourself, and when you have no other choice, and if you are prepared to risk the cataclysmic failure which is the usual result. It's a risk an individual must choose to take for himself, alone, if he absolutely must, and he certainly shouldn't be encouraging others to take those same risks.
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby catmoon » Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:40 am

There might be an excluded middle in here. The Kalama sutra warns against accepting arguments simply because "it is written". However, it does not advocate rejecting everything in the sutras just because they are sutras.
Sergeant Schultz knew everything there was to know.
User avatar
catmoon
Former staff member
 
Posts: 2974
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2009 3:20 am
Location: British Columbia

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Nighthawk » Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:45 am

If you read more of the sutta it also says one should "heed to the advice of the wise ones" Not exact words but paraphrasing and Buddha was indeed a very wise one.
Nighthawk
 
Posts: 770
Joined: Tue Jan 12, 2010 8:04 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:57 am

Ryoto wrote:If you read more of the sutta it also says one should "heed to the advice of the wise ones" Not exact words but paraphrasing and Buddha was indeed a very wise one.


Yes, but you don't know who is wise until such time that you have wisdom - at which time you are wise yourself, and you can heed your own advice.
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Tara » Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:58 am

Regarding the Kalama Sutta

... On the basis of a single passage, quoted out of context, the Buddha has been made out to be a pragmatic empiricist who dismisses all doctrine and faith, and whose Dhamma is simply a freethinker's kit to truth which invites each one to accept and reject whatever he likes.
...

The passage that has been cited so often runs as follows: "Come, Kalamas. Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing, nor upon tradition, nor upon rumor, nor upon scripture, nor upon surmise, nor upon axiom, nor upon specious reasoning, nor upon bias toward a notion pondered over, nor upon another's seeming ability, nor upon the consideration 'The monk is our teacher.' When you yourselves know: 'These things are bad, blamable, censured by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to harm and ill,' abandon them... When you yourselves know: 'These things are good, blameless, praised by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness,' enter on and abide in them."

Now this passage, like everything else spoken by the Buddha, has been stated in a specific context — with a particular audience and situation in view — and thus must be understood in relation to that context. The Kalamas, citizens of the town of Kesaputta, had been visited by religious teachers of divergent views, each of whom would propound his own doctrines and tear down the doctrines of his predecessors. This left the Kalamas perplexed, and thus when "the recluse Gotama," reputed to be an Awakened One, arrived in their township, they approached him in the hope that he might be able to dispel their confusion. From the subsequent development of the sutta, it is clear that the issues that perplexed them were the reality of rebirth and kammic retribution for good and evil deeds. ...
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ay_09.html
It's not a competition. It's a choice.
Tara
User avatar
Tara
Site Admin
 
Posts: 4124
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2009 7:59 am
Location: Who cares!

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Nighthawk » Sun Nov 06, 2011 9:01 am

If your wisdom leads to the cessation of suffering then by all means.
Nighthawk
 
Posts: 770
Joined: Tue Jan 12, 2010 8:04 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Sun Nov 06, 2011 9:06 am

Tara wrote:. . . stated in a specific context — with a particular audience and situation in view


The context doesn't change the meaning of that passage one iota in my view. It simply speaks the truth.

Now you can argue that one sometimes needs to have some degree of faith, when one is stumbling around in the dark, but that is a different matter, and I dealt with it in my opening post.
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby edearl » Sun Nov 06, 2011 11:45 am

KevinSolway wrote:
Tara wrote:. . . stated in a specific context — with a particular audience and situation in view

The context doesn't change the meaning of that passage one iota in my view. It simply speaks the truth.

Now you can argue that one sometimes needs to have some degree of faith, when one is stumbling around in the dark, but that is a different matter, and I dealt with it in my opening post.

Moreover, we are "...visited by religious teachers of divergent views, each of whom would propound his own doctrines and ...." This has left some of us perplexed. What is the Right Way to reduce perplexity? Is there only one Right Way? We can study, reason and meditate, and we can have faith that our study, reasoning and meditation will lead us to enlightenment. Study without reason leads to blind faith. Reason without study leads us nowhere. Meditation clears our mind and lets us study and reason effectively. Is there a better way than combining study, reason and meditation?
HHDL: "My confidence in venturing into science lies in my basic belief that as in science so in Buddhism, understanding the nature of reality is pursued by means of critical investigation: if scientific analysis were conclusively to demonstrate certain claims in Buddhism to be false, then we must accept the findings of science and abandon those claims."
User avatar
edearl
 
Posts: 289
Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2011 10:11 pm
Location: USA, Texas

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:39 pm

edearl wrote:What is the Right Way to reduce perplexity?


Seek the truth for yourself, by means of reason and contemplation. And study closely the words of those you believe to be on a promising path, should you find any such person. And have faith in your own reason and logic.

Is there only one Right Way?


How many ways are there to drop a burning ember to the ground?

Is there a better way than combining study, reason and meditation?


Acting on the reason (i.e., "faith").
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Appeals to Fact

Postby Malcolm » Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:59 pm

KevinSolway wrote:Appealing to authority is something you do as a very last resort


IF we are talking about what Kevin Solway thinks, the first thing I will do is look up Kevin Solway's writings. When talkig about what The Buddha thinks, the first thing I will do is look up the what the Buddha said in that or that sutta.

If Keven Solway claims some idea for the Buddha, if such a claim, no matter how reasonable, is not born out in an examination of the record of the Buddha's teaching, then Kevin Solway's claim must be rejected. For example, if Kevin Solway claims that Buddha intended rebirth to be interpreted figuratively but an examination of the record shows Buddha intended rebirth quite literally, then Kevin Solway's claim must be rejected, even if I myself too do not accept literal rebirth.

For example, if someone were to say "Kevin Solway believes in literal rebirth", and examination of your writings will show this to be false, therefore, that claim must be rejected.

In this case, these are not appeals to authority -- I have no interest in whether you beleive in rebirth or not -- but I am interested seeing that the Buddha's teaching not being corrupted by modernist revisionism whether Buddha's teachings about this and that in the end prove to be false.

For example, Vasubandhu teaches a geocentric Meru Cosmology that is clearly at odds with modern cosmology. I do not accept this cosmology, but if someone were to come along and try to convince me that Vasubandhu did not teach such a cosomlogy, I would point to the Kosha and show that Vasuybandhu plainly did teach such a cosmology. This is not an appeal to authority, it is an appeal to fact.

Pointing out that Buddha universally teaches literal rebirth in the sutras is a fact. Do not think you can select one or the other of the four distinct presentations of dependent origination, serial, static, momentary and simultaneous -- they are all necessary for a proper understanding of dependent origination and karma. Part of that is the Buddhist doctrine of conception i.e.literal rebirth taught by the Buddha himself in Vinaya to Nanda and in the Suttas to Ananda.

Those who rejected literal rebirth were considered nihilists by the Buddha and his disciples.

N


N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" If he does not teach according to the words of the Buddha
even if he is a guru, one should remain indifferent. "

-- Sakya Pandita
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11538
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Tara » Sun Nov 06, 2011 1:03 pm

Here is the entire essay for the benefit of everyone.

The passages I found pertinent are in bold (and in colour #BF0000 :lol: )

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ay_09.html


A Look at the Kalama Sutta
by
Bhikkhu Bodhi
© 1998–2011
In this issue of the newsletter we have combined the feature essay with the "Sutta Study" column as we take a fresh look at an often quoted discourse of the Buddha, the Kalama Sutta. The discourse — found in translation in Wheel No. 8 — has been described as "the Buddha's Charter of Free Inquiry," and though the discourse certainly does counter the decrees of dogmatism and blind faith with a vigorous call for free investigation, it is problematic whether the sutta can support all the positions that have been ascribed to it. On the basis of a single passage, quoted out of context, the Buddha has been made out to be a pragmatic empiricist who dismisses all doctrine and faith, and whose Dhamma is simply a freethinker's kit to truth which invites each one to accept and reject whatever he likes.

But does the Kalama Sutta really justify such views? Or do we meet in these claims just another set of variations on that egregious old tendency to interpret the Dhamma according to whatever notions are congenial to oneself — or to those to whom one is preaching? Let us take as careful a look at the Kalama Sutta as the limited space allotted to this essay will allow, remembering that in order to understand the Buddha's utterances correctly it is essential to take account of his own intentions in making them.

The passage that has been cited so often runs as follows: "Come, Kalamas. Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing, nor upon tradition, nor upon rumor, nor upon scripture, nor upon surmise, nor upon axiom, nor upon specious reasoning, nor upon bias toward a notion pondered over, nor upon another's seeming ability, nor upon the consideration 'The monk is our teacher.' When you yourselves know: 'These things are bad, blamable, censured by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to harm and ill,' abandon them... When you yourselves know: 'These things are good, blameless, praised by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness,' enter on and abide in them."

Now this passage, like everything else spoken by the Buddha, has been stated in a specific context — with a particular audience and situation in view — and thus must be understood in relation to that context. The Kalamas, citizens of the town of Kesaputta, had been visited by religious teachers of divergent views, each of whom would propound his own doctrines and tear down the doctrines of his predecessors. This left the Kalamas perplexed, and thus when "the recluse Gotama," reputed to be an Awakened One, arrived in their township, they approached him in the hope that he might be able to dispel their confusion. From the subsequent development of the sutta, it is clear that the issues that perplexed them were the reality of rebirth and kammic retribution for good and evil deeds.

The Buddha begins by assuring the Kalamas that under such circumstances it is proper for them to doubt, an assurance which encourages free inquiry. He next speaks the passage quoted above, advising the Kalamas to abandon those things they know for themselves to be bad and to undertake those things they know for themselves to be good. This advice can be dangerous if given to those whose ethical sense is undeveloped, and we can thus assume that the Buddha regarded the Kalamas as people of refined moral sensitivity. In any case he did not leave them wholly to their own resources, but by questioning them led them to see that greed, hate and delusion, being conducive to harm and suffering for oneself and others, are to be abandoned, and their opposites, being beneficial to all, are to be developed.

The Buddha next explains that a "noble disciple, devoid of covetousness and ill will, undeluded" dwells pervading the world with boundless loving-kindness, compassion, appreciative joy and equanimity. Thus purified of hate and malice, he enjoys here and now four "solaces": If there is an afterlife and kammic result, then he will undergo a pleasant rebirth, while if there is none he still lives happily here and now; if evil results befall an evil-doer, then no evil will befall him, and if evil results do not befall an evil-doer, then he is purified anyway. With this the Kalamas express their appreciation of the Buddha's discourse and go for refuge to the Triple Gem.

Now does the Kalama Sutta suggest, as is often held, that a follower of the Buddhist path can dispense with all faith and doctrine, that he should make his own personal experience the criterion for judging the Buddha's utterances and for rejecting what cannot be squared with it? It is true the Buddha does not ask the Kalamas to accept anything he says out of confidence in himself, but let us note one important point: the Kalamas, at the start of the discourse, were not the Buddha's disciples. They approached him merely as a counselor who might help dispel their doubts, but they did not come to him as the Tathagata, the Truth-finder, who might show them the way to spiritual progress and to final liberation.

Thus, because the Kalamas had not yet come to accept the Buddha in terms of his unique mission, as the discloser of the liberating truth, it would not have been in place for him to expound to them the Dhamma unique to his own Dispensation: such teachings as the Four Noble Truths, the three characteristics, and the methods of contemplation based upon them. These teachings are specifically intended for those who have accepted the Buddha as their guide to deliverance, and in the suttas he expounds them only to those who "have gained faith in the Tathagata" and who possess the perspective necessary to grasp them and apply them. The Kalamas, however, at the start of the discourse are not yet fertile soil for him to sow the seeds of his liberating message. Still confused by the conflicting claims to which they have been exposed, they are not yet clear even about the groundwork of morality.

Nevertheless, after advising the Kalamas not to rely upon established tradition, abstract reasoning, and charismatic gurus, the Buddha proposes to them a teaching that is immediately verifiable and capable of laying a firm foundation for a life of moral discipline and mental purification. He shows that whether or not there be another life after death, a life of moral restraint and of love and compassion for all beings brings its own intrinsic rewards here and now, a happiness and sense of inward security far superior to the fragile pleasures that can be won by violating moral principles and indulging the mind's desires. For those who are not concerned to look further, who are not prepared to adopt any convictions about a future life and worlds beyond the present one, such a teaching will ensure their present welfare and their safe passage to a pleasant rebirth — provided they do not fall into the wrong view of denying an afterlife and kammic causation.

However, for those whose vision is capable of widening to encompass the broader horizons of our existence, this teaching given to the Kalamas points beyond its immediate implications to the very core of the Dhamma. For the three states brought forth for examination by the Buddha — greed, hate and delusion — are not merely grounds of wrong conduct or moral stains upon the mind. Within his teaching's own framework they are the root defilements — the primary causes of all bondage and suffering — and the entire practice of the Dhamma can be viewed as the task of eradicating these evil roots by developing to perfection their antidotes — dispassion, kindness and wisdom.

Thus the discourse to the Kalamas offers an acid test for gaining confidence in the Dhamma as a viable doctrine of deliverance. We begin with an immediately verifiable teaching whose validity can be attested by anyone with the moral integrity to follow it through to its conclusions, namely, that the defilements cause harm and suffering both personal and social, that their removal brings peace and happiness, and that the practices taught by the Buddha are effective means for achieving their removal. By putting this teaching to a personal test, with only a provisional trust in the Buddha as one's collateral, one eventually arrives at a firmer, experientially grounded confidence in the liberating and purifying power of the Dhamma.This increased confidence in the teaching brings along a deepened faith in the Buddha as teacher, and thus disposes one to accept on trust those principles he enunciates that are relevant to the quest for awakening, even when they lie beyond one's own capacity for verification. This, in fact, marks the acquisition of right view, in its preliminary role as the forerunner of the entire Noble Eightfold Path.

Partly in reaction to dogmatic religion, partly in subservience to the reigning paradigm of objective scientific knowledge, it has become fashionable to hold, by appeal to the Kalama Sutta, that the Buddha's teaching dispenses with faith and formulated doctrine and asks us to accept only what we can personally verify. This interpretation of the sutta, however, forgets that the advice the Buddha gave the Kalamas was contingent upon the understanding that they were not yet prepared to place faith in him and his doctrine; it also forgets that the sutta omits, for that very reason, all mention of right view and of the entire perspective that opens up when right view is acquired. It offers instead the most reasonable counsel on wholesome living possible when the issue of ultimate beliefs has been put into brackets.

What can be justly maintained is that those aspects of the Buddha's teaching that come within the purview of our ordinary experience can be personally confirmed within experience, and that this confirmation provides a sound basis for placing faith in those aspects of the teaching that necessarily transcend ordinary experience. Faith in the Buddha's teaching is never regarded as an end in itself nor as a sufficient guarantee of liberation, but only as the starting point for an evolving process of inner transformation that comes to fulfillment in personal insight. But in order for this insight to exercise a truly liberative function, it must unfold in the context of an accurate grasp of the essential truths concerning our situation in the world and the domain where deliverance is to be sought. These truths have been imparted to us by the Buddha out of his own profound comprehension of the human condition. To accept them in trust after careful consideration is to set foot on a journey which transforms faith into wisdom, confidence into certainty, and culminates in liberation from suffering.


The Kalama Sutta

Regards,
Last edited by Tara on Sun Nov 06, 2011 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: ooops! left a 0 off the font colour.
It's not a competition. It's a choice.
Tara
User avatar
Tara
Site Admin
 
Posts: 4124
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2009 7:59 am
Location: Who cares!

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Sun Nov 06, 2011 2:27 pm

Bhikkhu Bodhi wrote: . . . invites each one to accept and reject whatever he likes


If Bhikkhu Bodhi thinks that people should not accept and reject whatever they like, then he is severely deluded.

The only alternative to accepting and rejecting what you like is having things forced upon you that you do not want and do not approve of. Such force is immoral.

Now does the Kalama Sutta suggest, as is often held, that a follower of the Buddhist path can dispense with all faith and doctrine, that he should make his own personal experience the criterion for judging the Buddha's utterances and for rejecting what cannot be squared with it?


Firstly, I don't know anyone who says that we should dispense with literally all kinds of faith and that we should dispense with all teachings. So Bodhi is on a flight of fantasy.

In any case, the Buddha himself made his own personal experience the criterion for all his judgements, and he accepted whatever accorded with his own personal experience, and rejected what did not accord with his own personal experience.

Of the Kalamas:
Still confused by the conflicting claims to which they have been exposed, they are not yet clear even about the groundwork of morality.


I don't believe that even for a microsecond. That would be to treat the Kalamas like idiots - which they obviously weren't. You don't have to be a genius to work out that you reap what you sow.

. . . dispenses with faith and formulated doctrine and asks us to accept only what we can personally verify.


Once again this is a straw man. Every person on earth has faith that the food they eat will not kill them - even though they can't personally verify it beforehand. And such faith will always exist no matter how much we know. So to suggest that people want to dispense with all faith is utter nonsense.

Trust needs to be earned, and even when it is earned, it should be a last resort.
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Malcolm » Sun Nov 06, 2011 5:32 pm

KevinSolway wrote:In any case, the Buddha himself made his own personal experience the criterion for all his judgements, and he accepted whatever accorded with his own personal experience, and rejected what did not accord with his own personal experience.



The difference between you and the Buddha is just that -- you are not a Buddha and so do not have access to the same level of personal experience. A sutta to balance the Kalamas is the Pubbakotthaka Sutta:

"Excellent, Sariputta. Excellent. Those who have not known, seen, penetrated, realized, or attained it by means of discernment would have to take it on conviction in others that the faculty of conviction... persistence... mindfulness... concentration... discernment, when developed & pursued, gains a footing in the Deathless, has the Deathless as its goal & consummation; whereas those who have known, seen, penetrated, realized, & attained it by means of discernment would have no doubt or uncertainty that the faculty of conviction... persistence... mindfulness... concentration... discernment, when developed & pursued, gains a footing in the Deathless, has the Deathless as its goal & consummation."

What is the Buddha's range of experience, according to the Buddha?

Ten Powers of a Tathagata
9. "Sariputta, the Tathagata has these ten Tathagata's powers, possessing which he claims the herd-leader's place, roars his lion's roar in the assemblies, and sets rolling the Wheel of Brahma.[5] What are the ten?

10. (1) "Here, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the possible as possible and the impossible as impossible.[6] And that [70] is a Tathagata's power that the Tathagata has, by virtue of which he claims the herd-leader's place, roars his lion's roar in the assemblies, and sets rolling the Wheel of Brahma.

11. (2) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the results of actions undertaken, past, future and present, with possibilities and with causes. That too is a Tathagata's power...[7]

12. (3) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the ways leading to all destinations. That too is a Tathagata's power...[8]

13. (4) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the world with its many and different elements. That too is a Tathagata's power...[9]

14. (5) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is how beings have different inclinations. That too is a Tathagata's power...[10]

15. (6) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the disposition of the faculties of other beings, other persons. That too is a Tathagata's power...[11]

16. (7) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the defilement, the cleansing and the emergence in regard to the jhanas, liberations, concentrations and attainments. That too is a Tathagata's power...[12]

17. (8) "Again, the Tathagata recollects his manifold past lives, that is, one birth, two births, three births, four births, five births, ten births, twenty births, thirty births, forty births, fifty births, a hundred births, a thousand births, a hundred thousand births, many aeons of world-contraction, many aeons of world-expansion, many aeons of world-contraction and expansion: 'There I was so named, of such a clan, with such an appearance, such was my nutriment, such my experience of pleasure and pain, such my life-term; and passing away from there, I reappeared elsewhere; and there too I was so named, of such a clan, with such an appearance, such was my nutriment, such my experience of pleasure and pain, such my life-term; and passing away from there, I reappeared here.' Thus with their aspects and particulars he recollects his manifold past lives. That too is a Tathagata's power...

18. (9) "Again, with the divine eye, which is purified and surpasses the human, the Tathagata sees beings passing away and reappearing, inferior and superior, fair and ugly, fortunate and unfortunate, and he understands how beings pass on according to their actions thus: 'These worthy beings who were ill-conducted in body, speech and mind, revilers of noble ones, wrong in their views, giving effect to wrong view in their actions, on the dissolution of the body, [71] after death, have reappeared in a state of deprivation, in a bad destination, in perdition, even in hell; but these worthy beings who were well-conducted in body, speech and mind, not revilers of noble ones, right in their views, giving effect to right view in their actions, on the dissolution of the body, after death, have reappeared in a good destination, even in the heavenly world.' Thus with the divine eye, which is purified and surpasses the human, he sees beings passing away and reappearing, inferior and superior, fair and ugly, fortunate and unfortunate, and he understands how beings pass on according to their actions. That too is a Tathagata's power...

19. (10) "Again, by realizing it for himself with direct knowledge, the Tathagata here and now enters upon and abides in the deliverance of mind and deliverance by wisdom that are taintless with the destruction of the taints. That too is a Tathagata's power that a Tathagata has, by virtue of which he claims the herd-leader's place, roars his lion's roar in the assemblies, and sets rolling the Wheel of Brahma.

20. "The Tathagata has these ten Tathagata's powers, possessing which he claims the herd-leader's place, roars his lion's roar in the assemblies, and sets rolling the Wheel of Brahma.

21. "Sariputta, when I know and see thus, should anyone say of me: 'The recluse Gotama does not have any superhuman states, any distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones. The recluse Gotama teaches a Dhamma (merely) hammered out by reasoning, following his own line of inquiry as it occurs to him' — unless he abandons that assertion and that state of mind and relinquishes that view, then as (surely as if he had been) carried off and put there he will wind up in hell.[13] Just as a bhikkhu possessed of virtue, concentration and wisdom would here and now enjoy final knowledge, so it will happen in this case, I say, that unless he abandons that assertion and that state of mind and relinquishes that view, then as (surely as if he had been) carried off and put there he will wind up in hell.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" If he does not teach according to the words of the Buddha
even if he is a guru, one should remain indifferent. "

-- Sakya Pandita
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11538
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Sun Nov 06, 2011 6:58 pm

Namdrol wrote:you are not a Buddha


I don't believe you are qualified to be judging people's level of spiritual attainment.

Even in the case that I'm not a Buddha, I could be of a level far higher than you can conceive of.
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Malcolm » Sun Nov 06, 2011 7:04 pm

KevinSolway wrote:
Ironically, not according the the Kalama sutra!




The Kalamas were not followers of the Buddha.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" If he does not teach according to the words of the Buddha
even if he is a guru, one should remain indifferent. "

-- Sakya Pandita
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11538
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Malcolm » Sun Nov 06, 2011 7:07 pm

KevinSolway wrote:Even in the case that I'm not a Buddha, I could be of a level far higher than you can conceive of.


I doubt it. Your knowledge of the Dharma appears very elementary, basic and utterly lacking nuance. (Note to catmoon -- now that is a qualfied ad hominem statement).

N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" If he does not teach according to the words of the Buddha
even if he is a guru, one should remain indifferent. "

-- Sakya Pandita
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11538
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:29 am

Namdrol wrote:The Kalamas were not followers of the Buddha.


True.

But the Buddha did not say:

"Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing; nor upon tradition; nor upon rumor; nor upon what is in a scripture; nor upon surmise; nor upon an axiom; nor upon specious reasoning; nor upon a bias towards a notion that has been pondered over; nor upon another's seeming ability; nor upon the consideration, 'The monk is our teacher' . . . unless you happen to be followers of mine, in which case you can disregard everything I just said, and you can simply have faith in whatever you interpret me as saying."
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Virgo » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:49 am

KevinSolway wrote:
Namdrol wrote:The Kalamas were not followers of the Buddha.


True.

But the Buddha did not say:

We don't care about what Buddha did not say.

We care about what He did say.

And, roaring the Lions roar, he expounded the Dharma for us, detailing many important points about what to adopt and what to abandon, how to understand reality, and so on. He was very clear about things like karma, and rebirth, and about gods, many of which, by the way, are Buddhists, or accomplished Aryas themselves. For example, many brahmas.

Kevin
User avatar
Virgo
 
Posts: 1394
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 3:47 am
Location: Globe

Re: The matter of faith

Postby Spiny Norman » Mon Nov 07, 2011 10:57 am

edearl wrote: Meditation clears our mind and lets us study and reason effectively. Is there a better way than combining study, reason and meditation?


Good point. Confidence ( "faith" ) in the teachings develops when we practice consistently.

CP
User avatar
Spiny Norman
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:06 pm

Re: The matter of faith

Postby KevinSolway » Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:12 pm

I say that we only really have faith in that which we ourselves know.

The less we ourselves know, the less faith there is.
KevinSolway
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:45 am

Next

Return to Open Dharma

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Fruitzilla, heart, JKhedrup, Norwegian, smcj, Sönam and 13 guests

>