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Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism - Page 2 - Dhamma Wheel

Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Ben
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Ben » Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:22 am

Thanks Dan that was an interesting read.
With respect to Williams and his choice of religion, I just couldn't help but wonder whether there was something else going on.
kind regards,

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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Fede
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Fede » Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:08 pm

Along with everyone else, I do not condemn him for his choices; we all have to live with ours.
I'm merely astonished that having spent so long as a prominent, studied and authoritative teacher of Buddhism, he seems to have misinterpreted several factors which, if I may say, I grasped with more ease.... Again, I am not, and I never would, put myself forward as a scholar, expert or authority of any kind, at any level. Many here know how much I struggle with teachings.... but it just seems really peculiar that if one takes the level which he apparently attained, that it's frankly all come to nought.... :shrug:

Ah well..... :thinking:

As Ben says, was there something else bubbling beneath the surface? :coffee:
"Samsara: The human condition's heartbreaking inability to sustain contentment." Elizabeth Gilbert, 'Eat, Pray, Love'.

Simplify: 17 into 1 WILL go: Mindfulness!

Quieta movere magna merces videbatur. (Sallust, c.86-c.35 BC)
Translation: Just to stir things up seemed a good reward in itself. ;)

I am sooooo happy - How on earth could I be otherwise?! :D


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Kim OHara
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:08 pm


santa100
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby santa100 » Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:58 pm

In open martial arts tournaments, they don't look for the best martial art. Instead, they look for the best fighter. Forms, katas, randori,...are all different for judo, karate, taekwondo, boxing, wrestling, etc. but at the end, the only thing that counts is the moment one steps into the ring and applies what s/he has learned to win the fight. So, it doesn't matter whether one uses the "thou shall not covet thy neighbor's wife" kata or the "abstain from false speech" kata, it's how well one executed and applied his/her skills to be able to come out of the ring victorious that counts..

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David N. Snyder
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Oct 20, 2011 4:55 pm

Image




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Prasadachitta
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Prasadachitta » Thu Oct 20, 2011 5:15 pm

Hi All,

Paul appears to misunderstand Buddhist ideas in a profoundly disturbing way. Not disturbing for me but I imagine it to be disturbing for him to have thought of himself as a Buddhist with such distortions. Having read the article Im glad that he is letting go of those ideas and embracing ones that make him happier.

Its interesting how his entire approach to Buddhism is framed by an argument around the existence or non existence of a creator god. Interesting to me because I never even considered that the universe could be ruled by an authoritative being who micromanages the whole thing. Its like the moon being made of cheese. It would require a very big cow among other things and my imagination just does not have that kind of elasticity. Those who do have such a fertile imagination are blessed with an uncanny power. I mean it. It might be misguided but what an incredible potential it is to have such an imagination to be able to consider such far fetched possibilities. :clap:


Metta

Prasadachitta
"Beautifully taught is the Lord's Dhamma, immediately apparent, timeless, of the nature of a personal invitation, progressive, to be attained by the wise, each for himself." Anguttara Nikaya V.332

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ground
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby ground » Thu Oct 20, 2011 5:40 pm

I never heard this name "Paul Williams" in the context of buddhism.

Kind regards

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Fede
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Fede » Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:38 pm

"Samsara: The human condition's heartbreaking inability to sustain contentment." Elizabeth Gilbert, 'Eat, Pray, Love'.

Simplify: 17 into 1 WILL go: Mindfulness!

Quieta movere magna merces videbatur. (Sallust, c.86-c.35 BC)
Translation: Just to stir things up seemed a good reward in itself. ;)

I am sooooo happy - How on earth could I be otherwise?! :D


http://www.armchairadvice.co.uk/relationships/forum/

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Ben
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Ben » Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:42 pm

Hi David

Yes, atta-view at work and craving for continued existence.

Hi Prasadacitta,
To me it looks like Williams is deliberately re-casting Buddhism in a negative/deficient light for the benefit of his audience and himself (managing the perception of himself in the audience's eyes). And from a Mahayana scholar, I suspect he is being disengenuous. Its a technique that is commonly used to deflect attention away from oneself. As I remarked earlier, it makes me wonder what else is going on inside Williams head/life.
kind regards,

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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Prasadachitta
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Prasadachitta » Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:53 am

"Beautifully taught is the Lord's Dhamma, immediately apparent, timeless, of the nature of a personal invitation, progressive, to be attained by the wise, each for himself." Anguttara Nikaya V.332

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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Prasadachitta » Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:55 am

"Beautifully taught is the Lord's Dhamma, immediately apparent, timeless, of the nature of a personal invitation, progressive, to be attained by the wise, each for himself." Anguttara Nikaya V.332

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manas
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby manas » Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:47 am

Williams says:

"And, Buddhists claim, there is no chronological first beginning to the series of past lives. We have all of us been reborn an infinite number of times. No God is needed to start the series off – for there simply was no first beginning. Things have been around (somewhere) for all eternity."


I feel this is a wrong grasp, somehow. In the assu sutta the Buddha says:

"From an inconstruable beginning comes transmigration. A beginning point is not evident, though beings hindered by ignorance and fettered by craving are transmigrating & wandering on."

He says that the beginning is 'inconstruable' and 'not evident', and indeed I recall reading that on the night of his full enlightenment, no matter how many lives and World-cycles he looked back, he could find no beginning point...but that isn't the same as saying that there is no beginning point, just that it's fruitless trying to pin it down.

There are many instances, such as this one, where the Buddha, rather than offering our intellects an answer to every single question they might thirst after, invites us to redirect our gaze to what really matters - as when he says, (following on from the last quote):

"Long have you thus experienced stress, experienced pain, experienced loss, swelling the cemeteries — enough to become disenchanted with all fabricated things, enough to become dispassionate, enough to be released."

Then the Blessed One, picking up a tiny bit of dust with the tip of his fingernail, said to the monk, "There isn't even this much form...feeling...
perception...fabrications...consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity."

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tiltbillings
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:17 am

Some people are just uncomfortable with, to borrow an expression from Alan Watts, the wisdom of insecurity.

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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Nyana » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:28 am


PeterB
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby PeterB » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:33 am

A phenomenon not unique to Catholics.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:40 am


PeterB
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby PeterB » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:46 am

You may be right. I can certainly see that is a more comfortable conclusion from a Buddhist perspective than the possibility that his choice was a conscious one , made from a knowledgeable position. A decision made in other words after confronting his insecurity.
But I am merely speculating. I dont know what went on in his head.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:10 am


PeterB
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby PeterB » Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:15 am

Yes I can see that it is much more comfortable to assume that his reasons were negative rather than positive.
Anyway must dash. First clinic is in 15 minutes. 5 people whose inner mental processes I will attempt to elicit without guess work.

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Fede
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Re: Paul Williams' On converting from Buddhism to Catholicism

Postby Fede » Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:17 am

Who did he study under?
And what must they be thinking?
"Samsara: The human condition's heartbreaking inability to sustain contentment." Elizabeth Gilbert, 'Eat, Pray, Love'.

Simplify: 17 into 1 WILL go: Mindfulness!

Quieta movere magna merces videbatur. (Sallust, c.86-c.35 BC)
Translation: Just to stir things up seemed a good reward in itself. ;)

I am sooooo happy - How on earth could I be otherwise?! :D


http://www.armchairadvice.co.uk/relationships/forum/


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