Buddhism and Manhood.

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Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Leo Rivers » Sun Jun 16, 2013 3:56 am

So, is the Buddha a guy who did good - really, really, really good, or is he a color out of space or 'never was a person just pretended to be?' [we are setting aside the "at the Ultimate level we are Buddha" model for this discussion]

Is a Better than Us Buddha necessary for us - or the practices that would make us Buddhas? How can we fools of flesh follow in the footsteps of a ghost and have it be meaningful, even if we are ourselves a whiter shade of pale?
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sun Jun 16, 2013 8:07 am

Personally, this whole "Buddha was enlightened before manifesting and acting out his journey to enlightenment" deal is Mahayanas biggest theoretical flaw for two reasons:

1. In order to overcome this flaw they had to the invent the Tathagatagarbha adding layers of unnecessary meanings and explanations and leaving the door wide open for the idea of Atman to work its way into Buddhism.
2. As humans it basically means that we are screwed since, in contast to the case of Shakyamuni Buddha, we have been born unenlightened.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Son of Buddha » Sun Jun 16, 2013 10:37 am

gregkavarnos wrote:Personally, this whole "Buddha was enlightened before manifesting and acting out his journey to enlightenment" deal is Mahayanas biggest theoretical flaw for two reasons:

1. In order to overcome this flaw they had to the invent the Tathagatagarbha adding layers of unnecessary meanings and explanations and leaving the door wide open for the idea of Atman to work its way into Buddhism.
2. As humans it basically means that we are screwed since, in contast to the case of Shakyamuni Buddha, we have been born unenlightened.


There is no theoretical flaw.
(1)Atman is already in Buddhism,Tathagathagarbha didnt bring it into Buddhism(this can actually be proven,the pali canon makes it clear that which is self has no affliction,that which is mon self is suffering and affliction)

(2)yea humans are screwed so is everything else that is conditioned and apart of the 5 transmigations of Samsara.
Enlightenment itself is originally pure,if it was impure then Enlightenment itself would be no different than the suffering we experience in Samsara,so in effect we would be trading one suffering for anouther suffering.
Hence Enlightenment is originally Pure.
Enlightenment is only obscured by our "human ego/self".
Enlightenment is not something our "human self" gains,so again yes the "human self" is screwed cause it can never gain Enlightenment.
Mabey we should relenquish this wordly human self.
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby seeker242 » Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:01 am

Leo Rivers wrote:So, is the Buddha a guy who did good - really, really, really good, or is he a color out of space or 'never was a person just pretended to be?'


He was a guy who got enlightenment and then ceased being a person and became a Tathagata?

How can we fools of flesh follow in the footsteps of a ghost and have it be meaningful


By taking refuge in 3 jewels and realizing that your potential far exceeds that of a fool?

we are setting aside the "at the Ultimate level we are Buddha" model for this discussion


I don't think that is possible if you are really going to answer the 2nd question.

:anjali:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby LastLegend » Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:16 am

gregkavarnos wrote:Personally, this whole "Buddha was enlightened before manifesting and acting out his journey to enlightenment" deal is Mahayanas biggest theoretical flaw for two reasons:

1. In order to overcome this flaw they had to the invent the Tathagatagarbha adding layers of unnecessary meanings and explanations and leaving the door wide open for the idea of Atman to work its way into Buddhism.


If Tathagatagarbha means Buddha nature, then what is Buddha nature? Is it not just a name conceptualized by language for us to understand.

2. As humans it basically means that we are screwed since, in contast to the case of Shakyamuni Buddha, we have been born unenlightened.


I personally believe in karma of the past that has taken us here.
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby maybay » Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:14 pm

Leo Rivers wrote:So, is the Buddha a guy who did good - really, really, really good, or is he a color out of space or 'never was a person just pretended to be?' [we are setting aside the "at the Ultimate level we are Buddha" model for this discussion]

Is a Better than Us Buddha necessary for us - or the practices that would make us Buddhas? How can we fools of flesh follow in the footsteps of a ghost and have it be meaningful, even if we are ourselves a whiter shade of pale?

Buddha is the apex of all our collective spiritual aspirations, and his own from many previous lives as a Bodhisattva. When we take refuge in him we join the vehicle that traverses the ocean of existence and arrives at Nirvana.
People will know nothing and everything
Remember nothing and everything
Think nothing and everything
Do nothing and everything
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Dave The Seeker » Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:16 pm

2. As humans it basically means that we are screwed since, in contast to the case of Shakyamuni Buddha, we have been born unenlightened.


In my understanding, which may be a bit off, this is the only realm we can create good Karma.
So in that aspect how are we screwed?

Also there are practicies that remove or lessen our negative Karma, hence we won't suffer in lower realms.
But as I said my understanding may be a bit off
Everyday problems teach us to have a realistic attitude.
They teach us that life is what life is; flawed.
Yet with tremendous potential for joy and fulfillment.
~Lama Surya Das~

If your path teaches you to act and exert yourself correctly and leads to spiritual realizations such as love, compassion and wisdom then obviously it's worthwhile.
~Lama Thubten Yeshe~

One whose mind is freed does not argue with anyone, he does not dispute with anyone. He makes use of the conventional terms of the world without clinging to them
~The Buddha~
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby maybay » Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:16 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:As humans it basically means that we are screwed since, in contast to the case of Shakyamuni Buddha, we have been born unenlightened.

And how will you die?
People will know nothing and everything
Remember nothing and everything
Think nothing and everything
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby mandala » Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:18 pm

Leo Rivers wrote:So, is the Buddha a guy who did good - really, really, really good, or is he a color out of space or 'never was a person just pretended to be?' [we are setting aside the "at the Ultimate level we are Buddha" model for this discussion]

Is a Better than Us Buddha necessary for us - or the practices that would make us Buddhas? How can we fools of flesh follow in the footsteps of a ghost and have it be meaningful, even if we are ourselves a whiter shade of pale?


Firstly, that's a seriously good beard you've got going on.

I don't subscribe to the "Buddha pretending to be an ordinary guy who gets enlightened' deal.. nor do I fall into the 'Buddha nature means you're already a Buddha but you don't know it' fallacy.

I think the meaning comes from following the footsteps of the Buddha and others (particularly the really shitty or outlaw practitioners of the past who got their act together to became highly realised) who have had trials and tribulations and show us the pitfalls to avoid.
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby kirtu » Sun Jun 16, 2013 2:46 pm

Leo Rivers wrote:So, is the Buddha a guy who did good - really, really, really good, or is he a color out of space or 'never was a person just pretended to be?' [we are setting aside the "at the Ultimate level we are Buddha" model for this discussion]


It doesn't matter. By following the practices we can gradually refine our behavior, accumulate merit , develop wisdom, and attain Bodhisattvahood and Buddhahood for ourselves.

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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:26 pm

Dave The Seeker wrote:
2. As humans it basically means that we are screwed since, in contast to the case of Shakyamuni Buddha, we have been born unenlightened.


In my understanding, which may be a bit off, this is the only realm we can create good Karma.
So in that aspect how are we screwed?

Also there are practicies that remove or lessen our negative Karma, hence we won't suffer in lower realms.
But as I said my understanding may be a bit off
Basically, if the Buddha was already enlightened when he manifested in human form then his practices, whilst in human form, were not the cause of his enlightenment. If that is the case then practicing what he practiced doesn't actually lead to enlightenment.

Screwed!

If we say that Shakyamuni Buddha was a regular bloke, with some really good karma backing him up, and reached enlightenment as a regular bloke, well that means that we (as regular blokes and gals) by following his method, can also become enlightened. (without, like I said before, adding unecessary layers and leaving the door open to adharmic views).
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Astus » Sun Jun 16, 2013 8:02 pm

We should see that the changes in the conception of the Buddha (Shakyamuni, and a buddha in general) are results of doctrinal development in Buddhism. If we go through the stages in Mahayana (that is itself a syncretic view) we practically arrive where we have started. That statement that mind itself is buddha and there is no other buddha outside of the mind brings the entire colourful set of teachings back to everyday people who can realise and embody the principle of buddhahood in this very body. In East Asia this is called the "buddha vehicle", in Tibet it is simply Vajrayana.

"There are a bunch of shavepate monks who say to students, ‘The Buddha is the Ultimate; he attained buddhahood only aft er he came to the fruition of practices carried on through three great asaṃkhyeya kalpas.’ Followers of the Way, if you say that the Buddha is the ultimate, how is it that aft er eighty years of life the Buddha lay down on his side between the twin śāla trees at Kuśinagara and died? Where is the Buddha now? We clearly know that his birth and death were not diff erent from ours.
You say, ‘Th e thirty-two [primary] features and the eighty [secondary] features indicate a buddha.’ Th en must a cakravartin also be considered a tathāgata? We clearly know that these features are illusory transformations.
...
Followers of the Way, true buddha has no figure, true dharma has no form. All you’re doing is devising models and patterns out of phantoms. Anything you may find through seeking will be nothing more than a wild fox-spirit; it certainly won’t be the true buddha. It will be the understanding of a heretic."

(Record of Linji, p. 19-20, tr. Sasaki)
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Dave The Seeker » Sun Jun 16, 2013 10:33 pm

Ok Greg, I can agree with you in those aspects.
Everyday problems teach us to have a realistic attitude.
They teach us that life is what life is; flawed.
Yet with tremendous potential for joy and fulfillment.
~Lama Surya Das~

If your path teaches you to act and exert yourself correctly and leads to spiritual realizations such as love, compassion and wisdom then obviously it's worthwhile.
~Lama Thubten Yeshe~

One whose mind is freed does not argue with anyone, he does not dispute with anyone. He makes use of the conventional terms of the world without clinging to them
~The Buddha~
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Son of Buddha » Mon Jun 17, 2013 2:45 am

gregkavarnos wrote:Basically, if the Buddha was already enlightened when he manifested in human form then his practices, whilst in human form, were not the cause of his enlightenment. If that is the case then practicing what he practiced doesn't actually lead to enlightenment.

Screwed!

If we say that Shakyamuni Buddha was a regular bloke, with some really good karma backing him up, and reached enlightenment as a regular bloke, well that means that we (as regular blokes and gals) by following his method, can also become enlightened. (without, like I said before, adding unecessary layers and leaving the door open to adharmic views).


your argument makes no sense.
the path the Buddha taught leads to Enlightenment
it doesn't matter if the path/teaching was given by a person who was a human and attained Enlightenment or a Buddha who was originally Enlightened and manifested the same path for human beings to follow.
At the the end of the day its the same path/teaching,the only difference is who gave the teaching.
you seem to think the message is lesser based on WHO gave you the message,instead of realising its the same message no matter who gives it.

http://buddhasutra.com/files/acchariya_ ... _sutta.htm

Even the Thervadins don't teach that Shakyamuni was a "regular bloke" who discovered Enlightenment,in all Buddhist birth stories Shakyamuni had already knew that he was to be Enlightened, he simply pretended to discover the 4 noble truths and the 8 fold path which he already knew in order to show living beings the path they must follow,in truth he was already a Bodhisattva from Tusita heaven and already knew those things.

Acchariya Abbhuta Sutta
"I heard and learned this from the Blessed One’s own lips: "As soon as the Bodhisattva was born, he stood firmly with his feet on the ground; then he took seven steps north, and with a white parasol held over him, he surveyed each quarter and uttered the words of the Leader of the Herd: "I am the highest in the world; I am the best in the world; I am the foremost in the world. This is my last birth; now there is no renewal of being for me. This too I remember as a wonderful and marvelous quality of the Blessed One."
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Jun 17, 2013 6:58 am

Son of Buddha wrote:your argument makes no sense.
the path the Buddha taught leads to Enlightenment
it doesn't matter if the path/teaching was given by a person who was a human and attained Enlightenment or a Buddha who was originally Enlightened and manifested the same path for human beings to follow.
At the the end of the day its the same path/teaching,the only difference is who gave the teaching.
you seem to think the message is lesser based on WHO gave you the message,instead of realising its the same message no matter who gives it.

http://buddhasutra.com/files/acchariya_ ... _sutta.htm

Even the Thervadins don't teach that Shakyamuni was a "regular bloke" who discovered Enlightenment,in all Buddhist birth stories Shakyamuni had already knew that he was to be Enlightened, he simply pretended to discover the 4 noble truths and the 8 fold path which he already knew in order to show living beings the path they must follow,in truth he was already a Bodhisattva from Tusita heaven and already knew those things.

Acchariya Abbhuta Sutta
"I heard and learned this from the Blessed One’s own lips: "As soon as the Bodhisattva was born, he stood firmly with his feet on the ground; then he took seven steps north, and with a white parasol held over him, he surveyed each quarter and uttered the words of the Leader of the Herd: "I am the highest in the world; I am the best in the world; I am the foremost in the world. This is my last birth; now there is no renewal of being for me. This too I remember as a wonderful and marvelous quality of the Blessed One."
Sorry my friend, but I got over believing in fairy tales a long time ago.

I have no doubt that the Buddha had accrued the causes and conditions for enlightenment during his lifetime in this world. Just like we have accrued the causes and conditions to come into contact with, and have a positive attitude towards, the Dharma. But that is different to already being enlightened and then pretending to not be enlightened and then pretending to reach enlightenment. VERY different.

According to the Theravada tradition the Buddha actually achieved enlightenment under the Bodhi tree, and then Maha Pari Nirvana at the time of his death. Not that it was a show. You have a nasty habit of interpreting Threravada texts through a Mahayana lens.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Son of Buddha » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:14 am

"gregkavarnos"]
Sorry my friend, but I got over believing in fairy tales a long time ago.

you obviously hold your opinion in more high regard than the sutras

"gregkavarnos"
I have no doubt that the Buddha had accrued the causes and conditions for enlightenment during his lifetime in this world. Just like we have accrued the causes and conditions to come into contact with, and have a positive attitude towards, the Dharma. But that is different to already being enlightened and then pretending to not be enlightened and then pretending to reach enlightenment. VERY different.


Again there is no difference in the path or teaching. It would make no difference if the path was taught by an already originally Enlightened Buddha,or if it was taught by a man who just became Enlightened in this life.
All the originally Enlightened Buddha did was show/manifest the path an ordinary man would need :namaste: to walk in to acheive Enlightenment in this life.

"gregkavarnos"
According to the Theravada tradition the Buddha actually achieved enlightenment under the Bodhi tree, and then Maha Pari Nirvana at the time of his death. Not that it was a show. You have a nasty habit of interpreting Threravada texts through a Mahayana lens.


your ignoring the the very purpose of the post,I have clearly shown from the Thervadan Text that Skakyamuni came to earth as a Bodhisattva,ALREADY KNOWING that this was his last life and that he was the higest in the world,then he proceeded to PRETEND that he didnt know the 4 noble truths and the 8 fold path.and he PRETENDED that he had "discovered" them in this life when in truth,he already proclaimed himself the World Honored One AT BIRTH.
Now this isnt a Mahayana interepation of Thervadan birth story.this is what is actually taught in the Thervadan Birth story.

Shakyamuni wasnt some "regular bloke" who happened to "discover" Enlightenment in this lifetime.
The Thervadan Birth story makes it very clear he ALREADY KNEW he was the World Honored One when he was born into the world.and after he made that announcement he only pretended to discover the path to Enlightenment.
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby LastLegend » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:42 am

The position that Buddha was a man who became Buddha does not stop the inquiry minds: Where is Buddha now? Are there any other Buddhas out there and what are they doing now?

The issue with not believing that we can become Buddha in one life time is a matter of one's own faith in my opinion. But then again, why are we stressing about how many life times it takes if we have a strong conviction?
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:39 am

Son of Buddha wrote:Again there is no difference in the path or teaching. It would make no difference if the path was taught by an already originally Enlightened Buddha,or if it was taught by a man who just became Enlightened in this life.
All the originally Enlightened Buddha did was show/manifest the path an ordinary man would need :namaste: to walk in to acheive Enlightenment in this life.
Actually i believe that there is a HUGE difference. Like the difference between Christ being the Son of God or a very successful human teacher. One approach deifies the Buddha putting him beyond the realm of us mere mortals, the other approach places us, here and now, in the same league as the Buddha with the same capcities as humans, capable of following the same path. It is one thing to try to follow a "god" and another thing to try to follow a person.

your ignoring the the very purpose of the post,I have clearly shown from the Thervadan Text that Skakyamuni came to earth as a Bodhisattva,ALREADY KNOWING that this was his last life and that he was the higest in the world,then he proceeded to PRETEND that he didnt know the 4 noble truths and the 8 fold path.and he PRETENDED that he had "discovered" them in this life when in truth,he already proclaimed himself the World Honored One AT BIRTH. Now this isnt a Mahayana interepation of Thervadan birth story.this is what is actually taught in the Thervadan Birth story.
The red bit is a Mahayanistic interpretation of the Sutta tale. I would say that he knew he would reach enlightenment, not that he was enlightend. His enlightenment (according to the Theravada tradition) occurred under the Bodhi tree.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby Son of Buddha » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:43 am

"gregkavarnos"Actually i believe that there is a HUGE difference. Like the difference between Christ being the Son of God or a very successful human teacher. One approach deifies the Buddha putting him beyond the realm of us mere mortals, the other approach places us, here and now, in the same league as the Buddha with the same capcities as humans, capable of following the same path. It is one thing to try to follow a "god" and another thing to try to follow a person.

It doesnt matter who you are following wether its a person a god or a Buddha,the path is still the same.
So it really doesnt matter if you are trying to follow a "man? A "god" or a "Buddha" the path will again be the same.
It would be like a person saying I need to learn 2+2=4 from a man,it would be hard for me to learn 2+2=4 from a god.
Cause following the god will somehow make the same teaching harder.


"Gregkarvarnos"
The red bit is a Mahayanistic interpretation of the Sutta tale. I would say that he knew he would reach enlightenment, not that he was enlightend. His enlightenment (according to the Theravada tradition) occurred under the Bodhi tree.


Okay so he was born into this world already knowing he was going to be Enlightened,he proclaimed himself the highest in the world,so greg why would he claim he was the highest and was aboit to become Enlightened if he hadnt yet even dicovered the Basic 4 noble truths or the path to Enlightenment?

Why proclaim himself the highest in the world and say he was going to be Enlightended in this life time,then all of a sudden PRETEND to be a regular prince who didnt understand even the BASIC 4 noble truths of Buddhism?

The fact he already new everything he was going to do at birth itself shows that his life as a worldly ignorant prince was all pretend

Its obvious he was pretending to be a worldly prince since he already knew he was going to be Enlightened ;)
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Re: Buddhism and Manhood.

Postby maybay » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:49 am

It could be argued that all nirmanakaya is pretense of some sort.
And if you asked Prajnaparamita 'Who is Buddha?' Gautama Shakyamuni would not be the reply.
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