I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with Hell

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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Jikan » Fri May 09, 2014 5:44 pm

Mort432 wrote:Also gonna gravedig here a little bit, and possibly be a little off topic, but I spoke with my Shingon teacher (who is an ordained lama) and he said that the concept of hell/the narakas in Buddhism is completely false, at least within Shingon.


Take a look at the volume Kukai, Major Works, around p. 165.

It appears that Kukai presented the six realms in the traditional way. Is there a mistake in the translation, or are you saying that your teacher claims that Kukai may have had it wrong on this point?
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby odysseus » Sat May 10, 2014 7:41 am

ground wrote:Since buddhism is religion and religion is about hope and fear


Buddhism is an education, not a religion. Religion is for children. lol

:cheers:
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Gwenn Dana » Sat May 10, 2014 9:51 am

You can escape the dukkha of hellfire. Just abandon fear.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Simon E. » Sat May 10, 2014 10:22 am

odysseus wrote:
ground wrote:Since buddhism is religion and religion is about hope and fear


Buddhism is an education, not a religion. Religion is for children. lol

:cheers:


Wishful thinking. Buddhism is a religion by any reasonable definition.

And each of its schools describes the Hell realms in a way that is beyond metaphor.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Andrew108 » Sat May 10, 2014 10:27 am

Simon E. wrote:
odysseus wrote:
ground wrote:Since buddhism is religion and religion is about hope and fear


Buddhism is an education, not a religion. Religion is for children. lol

:cheers:


Wishful thinking. Buddhism is a religion by any reasonable definition.

And each of its schools describes the Hell realms in a way that is beyond metaphor.


You might be right about Buddhism being a religion - although I hope it isn't. To believe in hell realms has consequences. Most notably the laws of physics would have to be altered.
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Simon E. » Sat May 10, 2014 10:31 am

And the problem is ?
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby theanarchist » Sat May 10, 2014 10:46 am

Considering that after death you don't have a body to anchor you, it makes sense that people who have a history of committing atrocities and that have a mindset that suits these deeds finds themselves in a state of hell as these tentencies manifest as an outer environment around him. Unlike the hell in Christianity the Buddhist hell is very much home made by the sufferer.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby odysseus » Sat May 10, 2014 11:07 am

Simon E. wrote:

Wishful thinking. Buddhism is a religion by any reasonable definition.



If Buddhism is really religion, then psychotherapy is a lesser science. It´s not a problem if you wish it to be, Simon. :zzz:
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Simon E. » Sat May 10, 2014 11:25 am

I am completely indifferent to your view of psychotherapy... :shrug:

And the fact that Buddhism conforms to all accepted definitions of a religion is not a ' problem ' whether it fits individual agendas or not...
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby joehayes999 » Sat May 10, 2014 12:03 pm

“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”
To me this is the single quotation that convinced me that the path was the right way, the only way. In relation to this video, or other Buddhist images or view of Hell, observe, meditate, think deeply and you will find the answer.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Norwegian » Sat May 10, 2014 12:13 pm

joehayes999 wrote:“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”
To me this is the single quotation that convinced me that the path was the right way, the only way. In relation to this video, or other Buddhist images or view of Hell, observe, meditate, think deeply and you will find the answer.


http://www.fakebuddhaquotes.com/do-not- ... -heard-it/

At any rate, in the Kalama Sutta the Buddha gives advice to the Kalamas, which were non-Buddhists. The Buddha taught more than just this sutta alone.

And yes, Buddhism is a religion 100%.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby theanarchist » Sat May 10, 2014 12:39 pm

Norwegian wrote:
And yes, Buddhism is a religion 100%.



For me a religion is something to believe in. Buddhism is a path to go, not something primarily belief based.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Norwegian » Sat May 10, 2014 1:01 pm

theanarchist wrote:
Norwegian wrote:
And yes, Buddhism is a religion 100%.



For me a religion is something to believe in. Buddhism is a path to go, not something primarily belief based.


Have you directly seen devas? Or asuras? Or gandharvas? Or pretas? Or hell realm beings? Or gyalpos? Mamos? Rakshas? Yakshas? Have you been to the deva realm? The asura realm? The preta realm? The hell realm? How can you know for sure whether there really are six realms or not? Do you have memory of your past lives or not? Or the Bardo? If you don't, how do you know there is such a thing as past lives, and that there will be a post-mortem rebirth? How do you know karma exists and functions? Have you experienced the dhyanas or not? If not how do you know they exist? Have you experienced siddhis or not? If not how do you know they exist? How do you know Buddhahood is possible? Have you experienced Buddhahood?

All of this is something we accept, because we took refuge in the teacher which is the Buddha, his teachings the Dharma, and his community, the Sangha.

What's the difference of believing in hell realms or deva realms, various gods and demons, past lives and rebirth, and that of believing in God or Allah, if these are things we will never confirm for ourselves experientially? It remains at the level of being a belief.

And this is the actual situation of innumerable Buddhists of the past, present, and future. Because it takes a lot of hard work and practice in order to achieve the dhyanas, in order to achieve siddhis, in order to remember ones past lives, in order to achieve realization, and so on.

So yes, Buddhism is a religion. You can say Buddhism is a path or a practice, but if you never actualize the intended result of that practice, you have not seen directly with your own eyes, and all you can do is refer to the Buddhist scriptures or teachers that says it is like this or it is like that. So you believe in the scriptures and the teachers, for whatever reasons you may have.

We may hope to go beyond belief, to the point of having actual knowledge (and realization), but until then, quite much is all belief.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Simon E. » Sat May 10, 2014 1:13 pm

joehayes999 wrote:“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”
To me this is the single quotation that convinced me that the path was the right way, the only way. In relation to this video, or other Buddhist images or view of Hell, observe, meditate, think deeply and you will find the answer.



But you probably wont.

You can observe, meditate and think deeply, and its likely that in the end you will have to rely on the accomplishments of others who have seen for themselves.
In Buddhism thats called Sraddha.
Which is not mere ' belief ' or ' faith '.
Its a willingness to say 'I don't know but I will put it on the backburner because someone I have learned to trust says that this is the way it is '.

Many people present to Buddhism because they think it will suit their rationalist agenda..they quickly discover that Buddhism is not irrational, but that it is frequently NON-rational.
At which point they have to ask themselves some searching questions...
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby WuMing » Sat May 10, 2014 4:45 pm

Mort432 wrote: .... Also gonna gravedig here a little bit, and possibly be a little off topic, but I spoke with my Shingon teacher (who is an ordained lama) and he said that the concept of hell/the narakas in Buddhism is completely false, at least within Shingon.


Just out of curiosity: A Shingon teacher being an ordained lama?? :shrug:

Ordinary people are blind to good and evil,
And do not believe in the existence of causes and results.
Seeing only the prospect of immediate profit,
How can they know of the fires of hell?
Shamelessly they commit the ten evil [deeds],
And in vain do they argue about the existence of a devine self.
Cherishing the three realms and attached to them,
Who can cast off the chains of mental afflictions?

Kukai - Precious Key
(tr. by Rolf Giebel)
今以佛眼觀之佛與眾生同住解脫之床。無此無彼無二平等。
Now, observing with the eye of the Buddha, both the Buddha and ordinary beings are in the same liberated state. There is neither this nor that: there is only non-duality and identity.
- 空海 Kūkai 弘法大師 in Unjigi 吽字義 The Meaning of the Letter Hūṃ
new translation: Kūkai on the Philosophy of Language by Takagi Shingen and Dreitlein Eijō
_______
Our life is very simple, very direct, very beautiful, very vast and very terrifying, but it is not at all convenient.
- Anzan Hoshin Roshi
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby TaTa » Sat May 10, 2014 5:02 pm

Simon E. wrote:
odysseus wrote:
ground wrote:Since buddhism is religion and religion is about hope and fear


Buddhism is an education, not a religion. Religion is for children. lol

:cheers:


Wishful thinking. Buddhism is a religion by any reasonable definition.

And each of its schools describes the Hell realms in a way that is beyond metaphor.


Which is the reasonable definition that you are working with?
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby Andrew108 » Sat May 10, 2014 5:10 pm

Norwegian wrote: If you don't, how do you know there is such a thing as past lives, and that there will be a post-mortem rebirth? .........All of this is something we accept, because we took refuge in the teacher which is the Buddha, his teachings the Dharma, and his community, the Sangha..


Sorry but this is definitely not how it works for every Buddhist. In terms of rebirth we use logic and reasoning rather than belief. The logic for rebirth goes something like: Awareness/Clarity is caused by Awareness/Clarity. Awareness/Clarity cannot have a cause that is different or other than Awareness/Clarity. Since Awareness/Clarity is not caused by anything other than Awareness/Clarity then Awareness/Clarity will continue to act as a cause for Awareness/Clarity. Hence the notion of past and future lives.

That is the basic logic that isn't something you need to take on faith alone. You can see how this might be true in your own experience. Personally I understand the argument but I don't necessarily think that it is proof of rebirth. But either way, in my view, Buddhism isn't something we get given in a passive way, but rather something we discover in our own experience directly.
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby TaTa » Sat May 10, 2014 5:14 pm

Norwegian wrote:
theanarchist wrote:
Norwegian wrote:
And yes, Buddhism is a religion 100%.



For me a religion is something to believe in. Buddhism is a path to go, not something primarily belief based.


Have you directly seen devas? Or asuras? Or gandharvas? Or pretas? Or hell realm beings? Or gyalpos? Mamos? Rakshas? Yakshas? Have you been to the deva realm? The asura realm? The preta realm? The hell realm? How can you know for sure whether there really are six realms or not? Do you have memory of your past lives or not? Or the Bardo? If you don't, how do you know there is such a thing as past lives, and that there will be a post-mortem rebirth? How do you know karma exists and functions? Have you experienced the dhyanas or not? If not how do you know they exist? Have you experienced siddhis or not? If not how do you know they exist? How do you know Buddhahood is possible? Have you experienced Buddhahood?

All of this is something we accept, because we took refuge in the teacher which is the Buddha, his teachings the Dharma, and his community, the Sangha.

What's the difference of believing in hell realms or deva realms, various gods and demons, past lives and rebirth, and that of believing in God or Allah, if these are things we will never confirm for ourselves experientially? It remains at the level of being a belief.

And this is the actual situation of innumerable Buddhists of the past, present, and future. Because it takes a lot of hard work and practice in order to achieve the dhyanas, in order to achieve siddhis, in order to remember ones past lives, in order to achieve realization, and so on.

So yes, Buddhism is a religion. You can say Buddhism is a path or a practice, but if you never actualize the intended result of that practice, you have not seen directly with your own eyes, and all you can do is refer to the Buddhist scriptures or teachers that says it is like this or it is like that. So you believe in the scriptures and the teachers, for whatever reasons you may have.

We may hope to go beyond belief, to the point of having actual knowledge (and realization), but until then, quite much is all belief.


So according to you scientific materialism is a religion also. Do you have a hadron collider in your backyard and replicate every experiment that you consider its results to be true? Or do you simple believe in what the scientific community says because you have seen that the method works and therefore have faith in that people who has follow that method "path" in a much more diligent way that you did?. Its the same thing with buddhism. Small practitioners have seen that the contemplative method works by directly experiencing small truths that past masters have expressed and therefore gain faith in this masters that spend decades, 12 hours a day proving into the nature of reality by way of contemplative insight. On then should should take this things that one can not directly experience at this point and take them as a working hypothesis till you can directly experience them.

The fact that you are supposed to directly experiencie this hypothesis to attain liberation is what makes buddhism radical empirisism and not religion based on dogma.

Then one might consider the devotional aspect of buddhism as religous, is that is all it takes to put something into the "religion" box then you can call it religion
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby duckfiasco » Sat May 10, 2014 5:32 pm

Regarding that post, I would say I personally experience the reality of Amitabha Buddha every day, and have from the moment I first attempted to see for myself as a hardened skeptic. But I suspect many who do not share this conviction would find ways to explain away this experience. This has been what I've observed in such discussions, that the standards become narrower and narrower until, though no one will say this, they're asking you to somehow duplicate your own experience in their minds so they can see for themselves. Even so, I don't anticipate that what is a skillful means for me will be so for everyone else.

Doubt is curiosity run amok. It's already a viewpoint even as it pretends to be impartial, and is therefore not a reliable source of information. Seeing for yourself requires looking, often enduring the discomfort of shedding layer after layer of warm secure thought-identities in your mind, remaining vulnerably naked before your actual observation of experience. Don't waste your life wandering in the desert of doubt. Turn your beam of uncertainty away from hardened ideas and towards an energetic investigation of what you may not already know.
Namu Amida Butsu
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Re: I thought Buddhism wasn't about threatening people with

Postby uan » Sat May 10, 2014 6:12 pm

Simon E. wrote:
joehayes999 wrote:“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”
To me this is the single quotation that convinced me that the path was the right way, the only way. In relation to this video, or other Buddhist images or view of Hell, observe, meditate, think deeply and you will find the answer.



But you probably wont.

You can observe, meditate and think deeply, and its likely that in the end you will have to rely on the accomplishments of others who have seen for themselves.
In Buddhism thats called Sraddha.
Which is not mere ' belief ' or ' faith '.
Its a willingness to say 'I don't know but I will put it on the backburner because someone I have learned to trust says that this is the way it is '.


True he probably won't find the answer for himself about whether there is a hell or not in this lifetime, but really it doesn't matter. The real question people want to know is "am I going to hell?" In that respect, the accomplishments of others who have seen for themselves is irrelevant, unless they can tell ME if I'm heading that way.

But even given the answer, what does it actually mean? Does my understanding or concept even match what the masters have seen? Take a common experience most people can relate to - child birth. You can describe it, you can see it, but until you have a baby, what do you really know? Even then some women have an easy time of it, others don't.

I know a man who is choosing not to have a second aorta heart valve replacement, because of the incredibly painful experience it was the first time and how it significantly impacted his life for months and years. Another man who had a similar procedure, twice, made a Youtube video attacking the first man, saying the surgery is not anywhere near as heinous as the first man described, and that he was out of the hospital in 4 days and on the road to recovery. Who is right? Did they even truly have the same procedure? For the first man, is he getting the same exact procedure he had 15 years ago?

Yet in their minds, they both are absolutely certain of what an aorta heart valve replacement surgery will entail. Each has actual experience to draw on. And each is certain that they are talking about the same thing. So what is the answer?

A master can say, there is a hell. This is the way it is experienced or "this is the way I remember experiencing it". But has he actually answered anything? And hearing him say that, can one truly say "I have the answer for myself?". In theory, sure, but in reality? Not really.

We often dwell on nonessential things that have zero bearing on us. How many of us are truly one step away from Hell? Far too often hell is used to instill fear in people as a form of control and/or as negative reinforcement to ensure "proper" behavior.

JH999 has the right of it in a larger sense - he's already trusting the accomplishments of others to outline a path for him to take. But ultimately, only he, and each one of us, can walk our own path to its completion. The "answer" is basically knowing for yourself, it is enlightenment. No one can give that to you.
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