jeeprs wrote:"Enlightenment" was first coined as a translation of the term "bodhi" by Rhys Davids who founded the Pali Text society.
The idea has become very much 'commodified' in modern culture. I suppose that is inevitable, but it is kind of sad also. I think people project all kinds of things onto it, and will do all kinds of things in order to 'get it'. And often what they are seeking is a projection of some kind. That is very common I'm sure.
I do however think there are definitely stages of enlightenment. Actually I think of enlightenment in terms of 'conversion'. 'Conversion' actually means 'a different way of being', not simply adopting an idea or a position. So 'an enlightenment experience' is like 'a conversion experience'. When these happen, they're for keeps, although people can always fall back from them. But a real 'conversion experience' goes deep, right to the root. That is why it is such a powerful force.
I read somewhere once that your initial satori is not the end, but only the beginning. That is very true. We would like to think 'ah, enlightenment, now I will have no more problems', but I think that is really a projection or wishful thinking.
Here too, why do you stick to the word enlightenment
? As you already said yourself
The idea has become very much 'commodified' in modern culture. I suppose that is inevitable, but it is kind of sad also.
Here I agree very much with you, and this is one more reason why in Buddhist context the word enlightenment
should not be used any longer. Why don't you think about stages of awakening? Buddha did so.
Only because the early translators did use enlightenment
doesn't mean that we should continue that misunderstanding/mistranslation nowadays. But to be clear, I do value very much the efforts of the early translators. This can't and shouldn't be underestimated!
Again, I wonder why people persistently stick to the word enlightenment
? One can read a lot about so called enlightenment
in mumbo jumbo new age esoteric circles, which often doesn't mean anything.
As far as I am concerned, I do not want to get enlightenment
*, or be enlightend
, respectively, but seek to live awake as much as possible, now, not lulled by habituated patterns of the five heaps.
* and anyway, what does that mean again?