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 Post subject: What if they're right?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:25 pm 
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There is a lot of derision of "New Agers" on this forum, often with good reason, but I started thinking this weekend: What if they're right? Not about what they think is "Buddhist" or the way Buddhism should be practiced, but about being on the precipice of a new era of human thinking? In another thread, here, we were discussing modernity (& postmodernity) and what it really means tp move beyond that worldview. What if humanity is right on the precipice of moving beyond modernity?

Such a shift in worldview does not happen overnight. It happens piecemeal. In the other discussion, we mentioned that, in scientific thought, Einstein's relativity opened the door to quantum theory and that is certainly a new way of looking at the world. HHDL talks about moving toward a global 'secular ethics', and that is certainly a new way of looking at the world. What will it mean to move beyond the modern worldview and what does such thinking entail? How will this shift come about?

Typically, the Buddhist answer to the latter might involve the coming of Buddha Maitreya. If we are nearing the end of a kaliyga, what if Maitreya is already preparing to descend to the world? How would one know?

Just thinking outloud....

: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: Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:39 pm 
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In some ways we are always on the precipice of a new paradigm, but what does that actually mean? How are we to conceive of such a shift?

The "New Age" vision of some sort of utopia with no antagonisms - that a person can somehow be "whole" and that society too can be healed of its rifts once and for all is in many ways naive and dangerous, and many commentators have shown that such absolutist thinking may easily lead to totalitarian social structures.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:45 pm 
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This is it. Its happening right now we are in the middle of it. The internet is the new communal mind, much of the science fiction of only a few years ago has come true, as a species there is some historical evidence that we are wiser and kinder than we ever were. If we dont kill ourselves with carbon poisoning we might have a pretty bright future.

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The substance of the Absolute is inwardly like wood or stone, in that it is motionless, and outwardly like the void, in that it is without bounds or obstructions. It is neither subjective nor objective, has no specific location, is formless, and cannot vanish. ~Huang Po


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:50 pm 
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futerko wrote:
The "New Age" vision of some sort of utopia with no antagonisms - that a person can somehow be "whole" and that society too can be healed of its rifts once and for all is in many ways naive and dangerous, and many commentators have shown that such absolutist thinking may easily lead to totalitarian social structures.


Utopias are out of the question because there is simply no way to establish one. Totalitarianism is hardly a utopia...

But might there be other ways to approach the modern paradox of achieving maximum individuality within maximum community? Is that not what HHDL is proposing?

: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: Sun Dec 23, 2012 6:51 pm 
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zenkarma wrote:
The internet is the new communal mind...


Nice metaphor, but not an actual 'mind', is it?

: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: Sun Dec 23, 2012 7:10 pm 
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viniketa wrote:
futerko wrote:
The "New Age" vision of some sort of utopia with no antagonisms - that a person can somehow be "whole" and that society too can be healed of its rifts once and for all is in many ways naive and dangerous, and many commentators have shown that such absolutist thinking may easily lead to totalitarian social structures.


Utopias are out of the question because there is simply no way to establish one. Totalitarianism is hardly a utopia...

But might there be other ways to approach the modern paradox of achieving maximum individuality within maximum community? Is that not what HHDL is proposing?

:namaste:


What I'm saying is that totalitarianism is an unforseen consequence of utopian thinking - that we can somehow dispense with emptiness and resolve the endless cycling of dependent origination on a phenomenal level.

If we are to approach that paradox, then it must be maintained AS a paradox rather than trying to collapse that paradox into a singularity. The Absolute cannot be thought as such but must be allowed to "be", and all attempts to grasp it necessarily result in a disastrous failure - In some ways the individual's enlightenment is a microcosm of the bigger picture - It is only in embracing causality that its seemingly arbitrary and senseless nature can be transcended.

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