Malcolm wrote:I did not suggest this. I said human beings must evolve beyond religion. Why, because the evil comitted in the name of religion outweighs its benefit.
Thank you, Malcolm. I appreciate this clarification. It is a much different statement from, "Religion, such as it is, is pretty evil.".
Malcolm wrote:Further, I explicitly stated that I was not advocating that we need to discard Dharma. Actually, if you examine what I said, what I said was that Dharma can help us evolve beyond religion.
This part, I think, was clear.
Malcolm wrote:...the overwhelming geo-political influence of the Abrahamic traditions has forced the Dharma traditions into supine postures where they de facto become identified as religions, effectively ghettoizing them. Hence we have "Hinduism", "Buddhism", "Taosim", "Confucism" and "Bon" and so on.
"-Isms" of all types are labels, whether applied in religious or non-religious contexts. As labels, they are used specifically to reduce complexity and therefore ignore the richness of experience. Labeling is a propensity of human minds, in general. Therefore, I would argue that this is not result of the influence of Abrahamic traditions. I fail to see how Buddhists labeling all Christians as evil (as some in this thread and others have implied) are any different from Christians who label all non-Christians as savage, or from Islamists who label all non-Muslims as godless. It is possible to deplore the outcomes of certain actions, which have been motivated or justified by religious thought, without overgeneralizing to condemn all those who confess to that religion or, even more generally, to condemn all religion.
Malcolm wrote:Even the modern notion of "history", which we pride ourselves on in the West, has its roots in the teleogical nature of Christanity. The Dharma traditions, on the other hand, have always been somewhat ahistorical because they all lack such a teleological nature.
Yes, which is why I recanted my earlier statement about history. Most of Western history has been told from a religious viewpoint, whether explicit or not. As for Dharmic traditions, rather than being "ahistorical", they are simply not dependent on a strictly linear re-telling of events to uphold a particular teleological conclusion.
Again, thank you for the clarification.