Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, completely

Discuss your personal experience with the Dharma here. How has it enriched your life? What challenges does it present?

Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:20 pm

dharmagoat wrote:It is difficult to understand how anyone with experience of a stable and sustained state of meditative non-thought can describe it so bleakly, and as if it was some kind of dark pit that we enter and cannot escape.
Actually, it can easily become exactly what you are describing. Normally we hear of enlightened mind being the union of bliss AND luminosity. Thought, and the creations which arise from it, are the luminous element of mind.
"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: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby dharmagoat » Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:25 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:Actually, it can easily become exactly what you are describing. Normally we hear of enlightened mind being the union of bliss AND luminosity. Thought, and the creations which arise from it, are the luminous element of mind.

It is good to be reminded.

:anjali:
May all beings be happy
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby tatpurusa » Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:06 pm

dharmagoat wrote:Tatpurusa may have over-generalised, but it seems that you have missed the mark altogether.

It is difficult to understand how anyone with experience of a stable and sustained state of meditative non-thought can describe it so bleakly, and as if it was some kind of dark pit that we enter and cannot escape.


Sorry, I did not intend to sound bleak at all. The meditative experience behind thought has nothing in common with bleakness, and of course nothing in common with catmoon's "lobotomy". It is not me, but catmoon who is over-generalising.

It is an experience beyond thought. It is the experience (as opposed to intellectual understanding) of non-duality of emptyness and clarity.
Clarity is not thought, neither consciousness in the everyday sense. It is an aspect of the nature of mind.
Thoughts, if one follows them, regardless wether they are right or wrong, pure or impure, are an obstacle in finding that state.
This is why even the most elaborated, intellectual, correct, wise, rational thought is a limitation. It limits our capacity to experience of mind's true nature, or buddha-nature (which is called "omniscient", though being beyond thought).

The difference between catmoon's lobotomic thoughtlessness and the state beyond thought is the same as the difference between indifferent mercilessness and compassionate equanimity.

These are just Buddhist basics. There is a reason why Buddha many times emphasized that emptiness and anatta has nothing to do with nihilism.

And yes, the non-duality of emtiness and clarity is bliss.
Last edited by tatpurusa on Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:17 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby tatpurusa » Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:12 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:It is difficult to understand how anyone with experience of a stable and sustained state of meditative non-thought can describe it so bleakly, and as if it was some kind of dark pit that we enter and cannot escape.
Actually, it can easily become exactly what you are describing. Normally we hear of enlightened mind being the union of bliss AND luminosity. Thought, and the creations which arise from it, are the luminous element of mind.


The luminous aspect of enlightened mind is not thought. Thought and ordinary consciousness do arise from the non-duality of emptiness and clarity, but they are not the same at all. Thought and ordinary consciousness are not enlightenment, and conceptual mind is not the same as the nature of mind.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:42 pm

tatpurusa wrote:The luminous aspect of enlightened mind is not thought. Thought and ordinary consciousness do arise from the non-duality of emptiness and clarity, but they are not the same at all. Thought and ordinary consciousness are not enlightenment, and conceptual mind is not the same as the nature of mind.
Really? So you are saying that they are different to the nature of mind? Seperate to the nature of mind? Interesting. They arise from the nature of mind but they are seperate to the nature of mind? They are apples but they come from a pear 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: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby muni » Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:56 pm

manas wrote: - I'm doing the same thing that everyone else is, I'm holding to a view.

metta.


Very revealing.

metta. :smile:
We have to go beyond theories no matter how sacred they might seem.
Theories can create an illusory distance between us and enlightenment.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby tatpurusa » Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:39 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
tatpurusa wrote:The luminous aspect of enlightened mind is not thought. Thought and ordinary consciousness do arise from the non-duality of emptiness and clarity, but they are not the same at all. Thought and ordinary consciousness are not enlightenment, and conceptual mind is not the same as the nature of mind.
Really? So you are saying that they are different to the nature of mind? Seperate to the nature of mind? Interesting. They arise from the nature of mind but they are seperate to the nature of mind? They are apples but they come from a pear tree?


I don't really understand about pears and apples ... :thinking:

The nature of mind is an ineffable state. Beyond thought, nonconceptual. Concepts are arbitrary divisions of reality. Nature of mind is reality.

Thoughts are like reflections in the mirror. Nature of mind is the mirror. They appear within the mirror, they are not far from it at all, not separate from it, yet they do not influence the mirror in any way, and they are not the mirror. They are just manifestations of aspects of the capacity of the mirror, becoming visible because of some secondary cause.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:57 pm

tatpurusa wrote:Concepts are arbitrary divisions of reality. Nature of mind is reality.
So concepts are not part of reality?

Or we can try this: Show me the point at which conceptual thought stops being reality and becomes something else. Or show me the point where conventional reality seperates from ultimate reality.
"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: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby tatpurusa » Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:55 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
tatpurusa wrote:Concepts are arbitrary divisions of reality. Nature of mind is reality.
So concepts are not part of reality?

Or we can try this: Show me the point at which conceptual thought stops being reality and becomes something else. Or show me the point where conventional reality seperates from ultimate reality.


Concepts are part of conventional reality.
They are abstractions, more or less arbitrary divisions of reality, based on conventions and dependent on skandhas and karmic view.
Read up on dependent origination and the five aggregates (skandha) if you don't understand what I mean.
These are just Buddhist basics, really. I don't think that this thread would be the right place to discuss these things.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby dude » Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:20 pm

tatpurusa wrote:
Sherab Dorje wrote:
tatpurusa wrote:Concepts are arbitrary divisions of reality. Nature of mind is reality.
So concepts are not part of reality?

Or we can try this: Show me the point at which conceptual thought stops being reality and becomes something else. Or show me the point where conventional reality seperates from ultimate reality.


Concepts are part of conventional reality.
They are abstractions, more or less arbitrary divisions of reality, based on conventions and dependent on skandhas and karmic view.
Read up on dependent origination and the five aggregates (skandha) if you don't understand what I mean.
These are just Buddhist basics, really. I don't think that this thread would be the right place to discuss these things.


It's fundamentally important, and I'm not satisfied with your line of reasoning, nor do I think "read up on it" is an acceptable explanation.
Shall we start a new thread somewhere else?
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby tatpurusa » Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:27 pm

dude wrote:Shall we start a new thread somewhere else?


This would definitely be the better way to do.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby catmoon » Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:49 pm

Ok consider it done. New thread starting, "Rationalism in Buddhism".
Sergeant Schultz knew everything there was to know.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Karma Tashi G. » Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:52 pm

Religion is like a giant temple dropped blam! on the native meadow of flowers of one's own spirit! But religion also is like a lighthouse for ships lost in storm at night, and religion is like a free tool store, for people who need tools but have no money!

Way to make religion go away is just practice! Where is religion then? Burned away! Where thoughts end, religion ends! Look at it like this... the Victorious Ones walked this path because they were taught to do so by some religion or other or some religion lama told them to. But what the Victorious Ones found was not in the scripture books!!

KTG
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Arjan Dirkse » Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:09 pm

I like religion as long as it keeps in mind that those ultimate truths are really unknowable. Anyone who claims to have all the answers or who has a roadmap to the afterlife is someone I would normally distrust, wether they are lamas, priests or imams.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Karma Tashi G. » Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:17 pm

Karma Tashi G. wrote:Religion is like a giant temple dropped blam! on the native meadow of flowers of one's own spirit! But religion also is like a lighthouse for ships lost in storm at night, and religion is like a free tool store, for people who need tools but have no money!

Way to make religion go away is just practice! Where is religion then? Burned away! Where thoughts end, religion ends! Look at it like this... the Victorious Ones walked this path because they were taught to do so by some religion or other or some religion lama told them to. But what the Victorious Ones found was not in the scripture books!!

KTG


Old guy, you don't know what you are talking about! Better to keep to your books and stay away from real practicers! Deep moments in meditation have religion feelings and emotions. Nobody doubts that. But if a sentient being on Mars practiced looking at mind, and never heard of earth, never heard of religion, what would they experience? Pause and think... Just what we do! Buddha nature is truly universal, but only here on earth we use the word "Buddha"

KTG
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Jigme Tsultrim » Thu Nov 28, 2013 3:06 pm

Are we for the religion, or is the religion for us? IMO any religion or practice which helps the individual a more kind and generous person, which causes the realization that the welfare of others and ourselves is linked, is worthwhile. I celebrate the good (in the above sense) achieved by others without regard the cause of it.
The raft is just a raft. The other shore is nowhere but here.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Tenzin Dorje » Thu Nov 28, 2013 4:02 pm

Often I have the same "feeling" you have, manas. However, I'd rather refer to it as a "vivid sense"; leaving "feelings" the meaning we give to it in the context of Lo Rig.

This being said, it seemed to me that this "I don't want to cling to a view" vivid sense was conditioned by thirst, craving.

There's nothing wrong with having this vivid sense that everything is contingent, accidental even, that I buy into something that I will not always buy into, and so forth. But if there is nothing wrong with it, why should it make us feel unsettled, upset, frustrated, or so ? The fact that this vivid sense is seen by us as a problematic, the fact that we approach it as something that is a bit of a problem that makes our mind unsettled surely doesn't depend on the vivid sense itself, but rather depends on the way we approach this very sense, what we impute to it, how we superimpose onto it, etc.

In short, I just think that this vivid sense is extremely valuable (it keeps us moving, alive, hopefully not so threatened by narrow-mindedness that we probably don't fancy anyway), and that it is important to find a way to deal with it without it being a problem anymore. One way of doing so might be by reducing our thirst, our craving. We crave for a so called objective truth cold and naked, even as Buddhist. We crave for a ground because being groundless is too much of a vertigo, do we not ? Also,

There's nothing wrong with this "I don't want to cling to a view" vivid sense but I think one ought to avoid its transformation into a "I don't want to cling to a view" mentality. I mean "mentality" in the sense of a conventional childish tendency thinking "F**** o** all views". Because if we can deal in peace with an authentic vivid sens of being contingent, etc. it is more difficult to deal with a mere mentality that we somehow imitate or internalized.

I truly hope this can help you.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby dude » Thu Nov 28, 2013 4:30 pm

Jigme Tsultrim wrote:Are we for the religion, or is the religion for us? IMO any religion or practice which helps the individual a more kind and generous person, which causes the realization that the welfare of others and ourselves is linked, is worthwhile. I celebrate the good (in the above sense) achieved by others without regard the cause of it.
The raft is just a raft. The other shore is nowhere but here.


I agree with that.
Conversely, any belief system, or interpretation of it, that doesn't lead to such ends is really really bad.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby Arjan Dirkse » Thu Nov 28, 2013 5:37 pm

Religion has become a way of life for me, not only Buddhism, but also Christianity, I am regularly visiting a (liberal) protestant church here in my home town, and maybe Islam in the future, I am thinking of visiting a sufi house near by me.

But I also do away with religion, continuously. I don't believe any of the dogma - the detailed roadmaps of the afterlife some people claim to know - or the parlor tricks.

So it's just a general attitude to life, not a " belief" per se.
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Re: Sometimes I feel like doing away with religion, complete

Postby undefineable » Sat Nov 30, 2013 9:51 pm

Punya wrote:A basic unsatisfactoriness pervading all forms of existence, due to the fact that all forms of life are changing, impermanent and without any inner core or substance.
This can (and has) been easily misunderstood as implying that the nature of reality, as defined by the Three Marks, is inherently unsatisfactory. If dukkha was inherent to the nature of reality 'per se', then it would follow that enlightenment would consist of a permanent state of existential agony :rolleye: :toilet: .

The only relevant conclusion that I know of (and which bears both analysis and reflection) is that reality is only unsatisfactory from a demanding POV of ordinary beings that's grounded in a thirst for particular circumstances for themselves as individuals. In other words, unsatisfactoriness is not something to be found 'out there' (e.g. in an inherent unpleasantness), but is instead the consequence of being driven by a demand for the satisfaction of desire (for a feeling of trust in one’s own inherent existence perhaps) to which there is an alternative way of being that's more compatible with the external reality.

Dukkha has this particular context (and so might be called a "relative" truth rather than an "ultimate" one) because the true nature of things cannot be simply negative, in an ontological sense, in the way implied by the Three Marks. If it were, there could be no apparent 'things' to have a true nature. An ignorant unfamiliarity with this ‘nature’ -along with all the lights in which it could be seen (including the free and boundless ‘positive’ aspect of sunyata)- seems to breed contempt, i.e. lack of appreciation, far more than familiarity does in this case.
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
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