futerko wrote:The "crisis" of modernity which results in post-modernity is seen as a failure whereby progress is revealed to be nothing but an endless cycle of repetition - chasing after rainbows and finding nothing new, only a regurgitation of the old. What is revealed as a failure of teleology is exactly its success when viewed slightly differently - it means we realise we are chasing our own tail and can stop striving after something other.
As you put it, "we are compelled to return and fully engage in the conditioned", with the understanding that it is all we have, we are no longer "distracted" by searching for something else, which cultivates compassion and gratitude on that basis.
Gratitude may come from easing the stress of striving, but the compassion comes from the realization of true equality, i.e., we are all stuck helpless in the endless cycle with no savior (whomever or whatever you may think that to be) in sight. If we want help, we must obtain it from each other.
futerko wrote:(A caveat to this may be that, despite Absolute Being (i.e. God) no longer proving to be adequate to orient our goal driven activity, science as Absolute non-Being still believes it has an aim.)
For the more idealistic scientists, that aim still may be some absolute "truth", for some it may be the amelioration of the "human condition" through endless modifications of "nature". For the less idealistic, it's an endowed chair, a notable science award or prize, and big bucks.
shel wrote:Samsara is also just a story?
Given all the above, my understanding is samsāra and nirvāṇa are conventionally "real", but nirvāṇa is conditional and no longer leads to escape from the cycle.