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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 8:12 am 
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Hi.
I would love to hear why you made your choice for Buddhism, to get some perspective.

Why did you choose Buddhism?
Why do you think it is the right path?


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 10:31 am 
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I chose Buddhism, because the basic ideas made sense to me, and I felt a sense of relief seeing something that made so much sense. And most importantly, it acknowledges suffering, and has workable solutions to that suffering.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 1:19 pm 
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I feel fortunate to live in a day and a time where I've been able to choose Buddhist teachings. I was attracted to Buddhist teaching because it was sensible, required no faith, and provided an established set of transformative practices. My frustration with other spiritual teachings was that they provided very little in "how to". Since then, my faith in the teachings has grown, but this is based on realizing the fruits of the practice.

I wouldn't say it's the best practice for everyone, but its the only one that "worked" for me.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 1:31 pm 
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After I lost my faith in some of the less subtle aspects of Christianity (around the age of 12), I became interested in Philosophy and Theology, and Buddhism was the only path which offerred a practice in keeping with the philosophies that I was attracted to.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 2:44 pm 
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It was in between the devil and the deep blue sea...

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 2:55 pm 
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When I was 14 I had a deep (at the time) direct realization of the deep interconnectedness of all beings. I read Huston Smith's book about the world's eight great religions and found that Buddhism provided the closest explanation to what I had experienced.

Kirt

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 4:41 pm 
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Some time in the late 1970s, I was feeling nostalgic for the 1960s, which I had been too young to appreciate at the time. I was in a bookstore and came across Alan Watts' "The Way of Zen". Not knowing anything about Zen except that it was big in the '60s, I bought the book.

I was astounded at how familiar it was.There was a resonance there that was lacking in the Christianity that I had been taught as a child. The feeling was of recognition, rather than discovery.

I followed up on the footnotes and bibliographical references, ordering the books that Watts quoted from if I could find them.

Om mani padme hum
Keith


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2012 7:35 pm 
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mrbambocha wrote:
Why did you choose Buddhism?
It allows me to wake up.
Quote:
Why do you think it is the right path?
The results of genuine practice are almost immediately obvious.
Buddhism describes what happens, why, and what you can do about it.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 9:57 am 
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Not to invoke a saccharine, dopey or overly-sentimental approach, but I would say that it was probably not so much a matter of me choosing Buddhism, but of Buddhism, via Amida Buddha, choosing me. When I saw the unfolding of the Dharma as described and transmitted via Jodo Shinshu (or "Shin") Buddhism, I knew I had come home, at least in the specific context of the spiritual quest.

Shin tells us that we are "saved", i.e., delivered from the samsaric ego and led to nirvana by Amida Buddha's "Other Power" alone. We are not to rely on self-power in matters of salvation. In fact, in Shin, it is impossible to rely on self-power toward the goal of reaching spiritual ultimates, because Amida is the provocation, the call, the answer, and the giver of true faith or Shinjin; at once the Giver and the Gift.

Yes, Shin does allow us to make self-effort ... in all things but spiritual fulfillment. Therefore, although I expended - and continue to expend - self-effort in my religious studies and other fields, I simply acknowledge that it was Amida's Other Power that drew me toward "Himself", to Shinran, to Jodo Shinshu, and thus to Buddhism :)


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 10:20 am 
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I was fortunate in that we had a family friend who was a Vajrayana practitioner, so I've been familiar with the Dharma my whole life. Although it took a surprisingly long time to fully commit myself to the path, I never doubted that I would eventually become a Buddhist. There's always been a sort of inevitability about it for me.

Not a choice, then: a homecoming.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 12:34 pm 
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underthetree wrote:
Not a choice, then: a homecoming.


A number of responses are similar - mine too. Raised in very strict Christian household, I was allowed a choice at age 13. By 17, I was a Buddhist, although I did not yet know what Buddhism was. Like others, it took me awhile to identify and implement...

:namaste:

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If they can sever like and dislike, along with greed, anger, and delusion, regardless of their difference in nature, they will all accomplish the Buddha Path.. ~ Sutra of Complete Enlightenment


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 6:23 am 
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Hi.
Thanks alot for your answers.
I really like bhuddism from what Ive read so far. It really feels right. But one thing that is botthering me is that bhuddism doesnt believe in god. So Im kind of "afraid" of making a "mistake". What if there is a god? Everyone around me believes in a certain religion, everyone tells me that there is a god and if I dont believe in god I will go to hell etc. It kind of freaks me out and makes me afraid to commit to anything. Ive spoken with christians, muslims, hare krishna etc..and everyone has a point, but still I cannot make a decision.

What advice do you have for me?


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 9:51 am 
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Actually, I'm a little fuzzy on how I came across Buddhism.

I grew up in a family that wasn't overly religious. We were Lutherans, and almost always went to church on Sundays when I was a kid. My parents kindly paid to have my final years of high school done at a Christian, co-ed, boarding school. I eventually grew dissatisfied with Christianity, and moved away from it all.

Then I remember reading a book by HHDL, the title eludes me, and the content of the book just made sense to me. I remember a bit of an "Ah-ha!" moment while reading that book. I thought to myself, "There something to this Buddhism stuff."

And here I am. I'm a lazy Buddhist, but the teachings ring true for me, and I know that the "fit of it" is right for me.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 10:42 am 
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mrbambocha wrote:
Hi.
Thanks alot for your answers.
I really like bhuddism from what Ive read so far. It really feels right. But one thing that is botthering me is that bhuddism doesnt believe in god. So Im kind of "afraid" of making a "mistake". What if there is a god? Everyone around me believes in a certain religion, everyone tells me that there is a god and if I dont believe in god I will go to hell etc. It kind of freaks me out and makes me afraid to commit to anything. Ive spoken with christians, muslims, hare krishna etc..and everyone has a point, but still I cannot make a decision.

What advice do you have for me?


If you can't choose between gods, isn't that the clearest possible indicator that the concept of 'god' is a bit flawed? There will always be people who want to bully you into following their god, which tells you that their idea of a deity is, fundamentally, god as the ultimate bully. Personally I have never had the slightest desire to follow a creed that tacked 'or else' onto their recruitment methods.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:02 pm 
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When I approached Buddhism for the first time, some text about Anatta, it totally pushed me away. It was absolutely against what I expected. But I couldn't refute it.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:18 pm 
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I found a few good books at a used bookshop.

It seemed like a good idea and I took it from there.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:32 pm 
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So far, I don't think I choose....it's the other way around.....Buddhism found me!

Is there not a speech in the film Matrix where it says: "What is the Matrix?, the answer is out there Neo, it is looking for you and it will find you, if you want it to".


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:48 pm 
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Not meaning to sound trite, but it kinda chose me. I had long read and followed Taoism. A friend suggested,
because of that interest, I should do some reading about Buddhism. It all just made sense and felt right. That
was about four years ago, and I've since taken formal Refuge Vows (Theravada) and continue to explore all
traditions of Buddhism. It seems I've found my home.

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Now having obtained a precious human body,
I do not have the luxury of remaining on a distracted path.

~ Tibetan Book of the Dead


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 12:24 am 
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I chose Buddhism largely due to the influence of the Dalai Lama. He awakened an interest that had gone as far as dabbling in a strange mystic version of Zen, and then gone dormant for decades. Suddenly there was this guy in my face all the time, via the media, who spoke clearly and rationally and kindly, without demanding belief in wild imaginations or fossilized dogmas. I had to check it out.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 4:41 am 
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I had exhausted everything else. Or it exhausted me.

:namaste:

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"To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget." –Arundhati Roy


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