Dr. Reginald Ray

No holds barred discussion on the Buddhadharma. Argue about rebirth, karma, commentarial interpretations etc. Be nice to each other.

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 03, 2011 5:14 pm

Yeshe D. wrote:It's not like Reggie Ray is writing books denying rebirth and running around talking to anyone who will hear him talk about denying rebirth.


Hi Yeshe D,

No, I haven't come across that in any of his books, however in the comment that Ray made as provided by Chaz and Heruka:

“The whole belief in past lives is something that Buddhism inherited from Indian Tradition. And I think, as with many things in Asian Buddhism, we need to take a critical look at this and see…you know, the Buddha said to his own students “…anything that I teach you, don’t take it at face value, don’t believe it just because even I said it– you have to look at it and evaluate it within your own framework and see if it makes sense. And if it doesn’t make sense, dump it, get rid of it.” And I think that incarnation, ah… reincarnation, as a literal teaching, I don’t find it helpful for anybody because it takes your focus away from this life. But if incarnation is viewed as a sort of metaphor for the fact that we humans are on some kind of extremely long spiritual journey that happened before we were born, and it’s going to keep on going, then I think it’s helpful.”

I can't imagine that is a statement other than denying rebirth. Like I said, it's not like Ray said "If you don't believe in rebirth, put it aside for now". It's another to say "You can drop rebirth from Buddhism and there is no problem". Now, if the context of his statement is wholly taken out of context, then I have no issue retracting my statement.

Trungpa Rinpoche "psychologized" the teachings on the six realms in order to make them more meaningful to his students. Ray is one of those students. Ray is apparently continuing with this same approach. (As is often the case with Ani Pema and other senior students of Trungpa Rinpoche who are now teachers.)


Ah, but you see Trungpa Rinpoche did not maintain he denied rebirth...his equating of different realms to psychological states to me was skillful means, and at the same time was not a decisive stance against the validity of different realms as literal either.

What would be laughable -- if it weren't so utterly lamentable -- is the almost palpable sense of self-righteous indignation and arrogance pulsing behind your statement.


I am self-righteous and arrogant because I know that rebirth is to be taken literally in Buddhism? Sorry, but I don’t play to the post-modern western neo-Buddhist views of the likes of Brad Warner, Stephen Batchelor and it seems, Reginald Ray. I don’t shape Buddhism to fit my needs of likes and dislikes. I don’t tell people to follow the 7-1/2 Fold Path instead of the 8 Fold Path because they don’t agree with the full 8 Fold Path. It is precisely this see-as-you-deem-fit mentality that is diluting Buddhism. Laughable and sad.

Do you find the teachings of Trungpa Rinpoche to be "almost laughable"?


Trungpa Rinpoche is not Ray as I explained above.

In all honesty, Buddhism is about confronting and challenging oneself and one's beliefs on every level. It's not about merely replacing an atheistic worldview or a Judeo-Christian worldview with an Indian worldview. As Ray says in Touching Enlightenment: Finding Realization in the Body:
Buddhism, in its most subtle and sophisticated expression, is not a tradition that seeks to provide answers to life's questions or to dispense "wisdom" to allay our fundamental angst. Rather, it challenges us to look beyond any and all answers that we may have found along the way, to meet ourselves in a naked, direct, and fearless fashion.

And:
The role of tradition, at least according to Buddhism, is thus not to limit the search, the experience, the journey, but to open us to it — tradition here is inspiration, challenge, and provocation, and some helpful practices, not a set of answers.

This is by far a more refined and challenging approach than your "[W]hy practice Buddhism if one doesn't believe in rebirth?"


When you say challenging, you mean what? That Ray offers a more flowery exposition that allows one to pick and choose the major tenets that are in Buddhism? I don’t feel the need to dress my words up with euphemistic language in order to misinform people in reference to the core ideas that are in Buddhism.
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    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Jan 03, 2011 7:59 pm

mr. gordo wrote:Ah, but you see Trungpa Rinpoche did not maintain he denied rebirth...his equating of different realms to psychological states to me was skillful means, and at the same time was not a decisive stance against the validity of different realms as literal either.

I don't consider one comment from an interview to amount to "a decisive stance against the validity of different realms as literal."

mr. gordo wrote:I am self-righteous and arrogant because I know that rebirth is to be taken literally in Buddhism?

Your statement was. There is far more to skill in means than merely chiming along with self-congratulatory platitudes alongside fellow club members. This isn't an either/or proposition. Nor is it a win/loose situation. We can connect and engage with others of differing views without ever compromising our own faith and convictions. And we can certainly do so in a more skillful fashion than presenting others with ultimatums.

mr. gordo wrote:Sorry, but I don’t play to the post-modern western neo-Buddhist views of the likes of Brad Warner, Stephen Batchelor and it seems, Reginald Ray.

Sorry, but again, I haven't seen Ray writing entire books or giving entire public teachings devoted to jettisoning rebirth, thus I don't see any cause for lumping Ray in with Batchelor or Warner.

mr. gordo wrote:When you say challenging, you mean what? That Ray offers a more flowery exposition that allows one to pick and choose the major tenets that are in Buddhism?

No. I mean challenging all of us to dig deeper than conventional world views. Challenging all of us to engage others in more meaningful dialogue than what you seem to be willing to offer here on this thread. Dialogue isn't a one way street. The inability to connect and engage with others of differing views demonstrates a lack of skill in means. The unwillingness to connect and engage with others demonstrates intellectual laziness. We know how successful this attitude of "[W]hy practice Buddhism if one doesn't believe in rebirth?," conjoined with similar sentiments and actions, proved to be for E-sangha.

All the best,

Geoff
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 03, 2011 8:27 pm

Hi Yeshe D.,

I don't consider one comment from an interview to amount to "a decisive stance against the validity of different realms as literal."


And yet, there is no clarification from Ray that he believes otherwise, though it has been some time since I’ve read his last two books. If so, there is no one here who is a representative of his that has come out and clarified on what Ray meant in his statement.

Your statement was. There is far more to skill in means than merely chiming along with self-congratulatory platitudes alongside fellow club members. This isn't an either/or proposition. Nor is it a win/loose situation. We can connect and engage with others of differing views without ever compromising our own faith and convictions. And we can certainly do so in a more skillful fashion than presenting others with ultimatums.


The fellow members who I side with, and believe in rebirth…are right. And from a classical Buddhist perspective, it IS an either/or situation, nor have I put ultimatums on people. As much as you would like to bend and coerce Buddhism to fit your worldview, I am merely presenting rebirth as it is understood in a traditional Buddhist sense. Perhaps you should start another thread labeled “Western Buddhist Beliefs on Rebirth”.

Sorry, but again, I haven't seen Ray writing entire books or giving entire public teachings devoted to jettisoning rebirth, thus I don't see any cause for lumping Ray in with Batchelor or Warner.


Once again, no elaboration was given on the comment that was made, so on looking on the statement in question, he denies rebirth. If further elaboration can be made by a representative of Ray, it would clarify a lot. But that hasn’t happened, so I will base my comments on the statement given by Ray.

No. I mean challenging all of us to dig deeper than conventional world views.


Well sure, like I said, you or someone else is more than free to start a thread on “Western Buddhist Beliefs on X” I’m just giving the standard Buddhist view on rebirth, and I am not denying your ability to counter mine.

We know how successful this attitude of "[W]hy practice Buddhism if one doesn't believe in rebirth?," conjoined with similar sentiments and actions, proved to be for E-sangha.


Yes, it demolished years of fruitful conversation due to some immature people who didn’t act quite so compassionately did they?
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Jan 03, 2011 9:45 pm

mr. gordo wrote:As much as you would like to bend and coerce Buddhism to fit your worldview, I am merely presenting rebirth as it is understood in a traditional Buddhist sense.

Now you're jumping to fallacious conclusions based upon an apparent unwillingness to engage in an intelligent dialogue. I fully accept rebirth and make no bones about it. But I also understand that in many cases merely parroting overly simplistic answers to profound, complex questions isn't a very meaningful or useful approach.

As a mod here on DW it might be time to reflect upon upping your game.

mr. gordo wrote:Once again, no elaboration was given on the comment that was made, so on looking on the statement in question, he denies rebirth.

Another conclusion based on rather meager evidence.

mr. gordo wrote:Yes, it demolished years of fruitful conversation due to some immature people who didn’t act quite so compassionately did they?

And in my opinion the Dharma is far too precious and rare in this world for the E-sangha fiasco to ever be repeated in any arena or amongst any people attempting to learn and integrate all of the aspects of the eightfold path. I don't believe in dumbing down the Dharma. I also don't see any skillfulness in looking down upon others or engendering a smug attitude, pretending to know all the answers.

All the best,

Geoff
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:06 pm

I fully accept rebirth and make no bones about it.


Yet it took so long for you to say it.

I also understand that in many cases merely parroting overly simplistic answers to profound, complex questions isn't a very meaningful or useful approach.


Which by the way you have offered none of your own meaningful statements in this thread mind you. No arguments from scripture, inferences from scientific findings..none.

As a mod here on DW it might be time to reflect upon upping your game.


Now,now,Yeshe, no need to get all bent out of shape. Who knew that one needed to go above and beyond to point out the obvious…that there is literal rebirth. Perhaps next we’ll make sure future mods are able to better elucidate for further discussions that Karma is real, and backed up with the latest findings from post-modern literature and parapsychology. What the heck, let’s throw in some scripture to while we’re at it.

Another conclusion based on rather meager evidence.


No, it’s simple fact. Ray has not elaborated or clarified his statement, nor has a representative of his come out to confirm otherwise.

I don't believe in dumbing down the Dharma.


Neither do I.

I also don't see any skillfulness in looking down upon others or engendering a smug attitude, pretending to know all the answers.


I agree. Neither is spreading false Dharma in the guise of genuine Dharma.

But like I said, you are more than happy to start another thread on “WesternBuddhist Beliefs”. I am not stopping you friend.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Blue Garuda » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:13 pm

Yeshe D. wrote:
As a mod here on DW it might be time to reflect upon upping your game.



As a member you need to understand that Mods apply ToS, to which as members they must also adhere. It is a voluntary role and is on no way related to a person's knowledge, skills in debate or their views, which they are as free to express as any other member.

Mods are free to post views on threads - and I think it is a very unworthy act to use a Mod's status to score points in a debate with an irrelevant sideswipe of an ad hom.
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:24 pm

mr. gordo wrote:Which by the way you have offered none of your own meaningful statements in this thread mind you.

I've attempted to offer some suggestions on how to engage with people who hold differing views.

mr. gordo wrote:Now,now,Yeshe, no need to get all bent out of shape.

Another fallacious inference (phrased in patronizing language no less!). At any rate, I'm sitting here on my cushion with my laptop as per usual, with a cup of tea and a smile. :smile:

mr. gordo wrote:Who knew that one needed to go above and beyond to point out the obvious

Well, in all honesty, we are often required to go above and beyond when engaging with a diverse group of individuals. We may not always rise to the occasion as artfully as we would like, but we can always open further and learn more skillful ways of communicating.

mr. gordo wrote:Perhaps next we’ll make sure future mods are able to better elucidate for further discussions that Karma is real, and backed up with the latest findings from post-modern literature and parapsychology. What the heck, let’s throw in some scripture to while we’re at it.

It seems that you're missing the gist of what I'm trying to express. No doubt in part due to my provocative tone.

mr. gordo wrote:
Another conclusion based on rather meager evidence.

No, it’s simple fact.

Nonsense. You can drop the defensive posturing at any time Gordo.

mr. gordo wrote:Neither is spreading false Dharma in the guise of genuine Dharma.

And who are you accusing of spreading false Dharma?

All the best,

Geoff
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:26 pm

Yeshe wrote:Mods are free to post views on threads - and I think it is a very unworthy act to use a Mod's status to score points in a debate with an irrelevant sideswipe of an ad hom.

There was and is absolutely no intention "scoring points" on my part. And it wasn't an ad hom, it was a suggestion.

All the best,

Geoff
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Blue Garuda » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:39 pm

Yeshe D. wrote:
Yeshe wrote:Mods are free to post views on threads - and I think it is a very unworthy act to use a Mod's status to score points in a debate with an irrelevant sideswipe of an ad hom.

There was and is absolutely no intention "scoring points" on my part. And it wasn't an ad hom, it was a suggestion.

All the best,

Geoff


Do me a favour. It was a stupid remark.

Work as a Mod has nothing to do with debating skills on a thread.

Your comment was literally 'ad hominem' - aimed at the person rather than his argument, and your 'suggestion' was a cheap shot, and says more about you than the target of your remarks.

Please try to debate without attacking people. Thanks.
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 03, 2011 11:28 pm

Yeshe D,

I've attempted to offer some suggestions on how to engage with people who hold differing views.


Your mediating input is appreciated, however I was referring to the argument against a literal rebirth. There were no suggestions on your part here.

Another fallacious inference (phrased in patronizing language no less!)


Any less patronizing than this statement of yours?:

As a mod here on DW it might be time to reflect upon upping your game.

Well, in all honesty, we are often required to go above and beyond when engaging with a diverse group of individuals. We may not always rise to the occasion as artfully as we would like, but we can always open further and learn more skillful ways of communicating.


This is true, and applies to everyone.

It seems that you're missing the gist of what I'm trying to express. No doubt in part due to my provocative tone.


No, I know full well what your trying to express, it's just that I disagree with it. And your tone is not provocative to me.

Nonsense. You can drop the defensive posturing at any time Gordo.


Now you see, this is not defensive posturing. I once again reiterate it is fact in reference to the core of this conversation:

Reginald Ray has not elaborated or clarified his statement, nor has a representative of his come out to deny his lack of belief in literal rebirth.

And who are you accusing of spreading false Dharma?


Anyone who denies rebirth literally.

Like I've repeated before, I'm not here to suppress other interpretations of rebirth, and if anything a thread has already been made on this:

viewtopic.php?f=66&t=1661

This is not so much another rebirth thread, but a thread on Reginald Ray's belief on rebirth. I've also stated I will retract my position on Ray if clarification is made by him or one of his representatives.
    How foolish you are,
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Jan 03, 2011 11:57 pm

mr. gordo wrote:
Another fallacious inference (phrased in patronizing language no less!)

Any less patronizing than this statement of yours?:

As a mod here on DW it might be time to reflect upon upping your game.

Well, that was an attempt at adversarial provocation.... According to Yeshe I need to up my adversarial game. :tongue:

mr. gordo wrote:And your tone is not provocative to me.

I'm glad that you are able to maintain your presence. :namaste:

mr. gordo wrote:Reginald Ray has not elaborated or clarified his statement, nor has a representative of his come out to deny his lack of belief in literal rebirth.

Ray isn't under any obligation to come here and clarify his statement. I don't know Ray personally, but I'm more than willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one. He's earned it.

mr. gordo wrote:
And who are you accusing of spreading false Dharma?

Anyone who denies rebirth literally.

And I'm suggesting that making such provocative accusations based on one phrase from one interview may not be a very prudent approach. We simply don't need any more of the type of adversarial provocation employed by certain E-sangha mods to denigrate Reggie Ray as a Buddhist teacher, along with numerous other credentialed Buddhist teachers. IMO, from a conservative Dharma perspective, there were a number of completely inexcusable statements and actions on the part of certain mods on E-sangha over the course of the final year of its existence. That isn't the kind of behavior to be emulated.

All the best,

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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Chaz » Tue Jan 04, 2011 12:24 am

Yeshe D. wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:Reginald Ray has not elaborated or clarified his statement, nor has a representative of his come out to deny his lack of belief in literal rebirth.

Ray isn't under any obligation to come here and clarify his statement. I don't know Ray personally, but I'm more than willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one. He's earned it.


You are quite right. RR is under no obligation to clarify his statement in this or any other forum.

Like you I'm perfectly content togive the Good Doctor the benefit of a doubt and in any case I don't think he was saying what's being attributed to him anyway.

And as far as clarification goes, it's not like someone like Gordo couldn't accually approach Reggie and ask for clarification. Done with respect and an open heart, I have no doubt that Ray would respond to a query with clarification. Besides being under no obligation to respond here is similarly under no obligation to respond to an email, but done correctly ......

So gordo! How about you drop ol' Reggie a note and give him the chance to speak for himself. I believe there's contact info on the Dharma Ocean web site.
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Tue Jan 04, 2011 12:27 am

Yeshe D,

Ray isn't under any obligation to come here and clarify his statement.


I never said he was. I merely commented that based on his statement, his position on rebirth was quite clear. However, if clarification were to be made, that would be better.

I don't know Ray personally, but I'm more than willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one. He's earned it.


Well I am unwilling to give anyone the benefit of the doubt on such a core issue as rebirth. However, I'll do you one better instead of just relying upon someone's reputation and email his organization in the morning.

And I'm suggesting that making such provocative accusations based on one phrase from one interview may not be a very prudent approach. We simply don't need any more of the type of adversarial provocation employed by certain E-sangha mods to denigrate Reggie Ray as a Buddhist teacher, along with numerous other credentialed Buddhist teachers.


If criticism was backed by commonly accepted scripture and commentary then the standard Buddhist view was correctly presented. I'm not talking about debating the subtle points of Gorampa vs. Tsong Khapa, or whether a certain Mahamudra practice requires an empowerment or not. I'm talking about a fairly core concept present in all lineages.

What it really comes down to is where do you draw the line? Make rebirth a metaphor, Karma a psychological response, enlightenment a delusion. At what point do you decide it's still Buddhism? Do we rely upon our personal opinions or what can be referenced through scripture, commentaries and respected practitioner scholars? What do you think is the final straw where Buddhism no longer resembles Buddhism?
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Tue Jan 04, 2011 12:28 am

Yeshe D. wrote:So gordo! How about you drop ol' Reggie a note and give him the chance to speak for himself. I believe there's contact info on the Dharma Ocean web site.


Ha, Chaz, your psychic siddhis are on tonight! LOL. I just posted I would email his organization in the morning. I like the way you think kid! :thumbsup: :lol:
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:26 am

mr. gordo wrote:What it really comes down to is where do you draw the line?

Everyone is free to draw the line wherever they see fit. Generally, I don't hold other teachers to the same high standard that my own teachers have demonstrated. And as already indicated, I think each situation is unique and it's prudent to maintain restraint when discussing matters such as these. For example, I have no interest in Stephen Batchelor, Brad Warner, or Michael Roach, but I find smug ego-stroking and ranting against their alleged heterodoxy to be more distasteful than what these guys are being accused of doing.

Anyway, I would be interested to hear what Reggie has to say.

All the best,

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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Chaz » Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:39 am

mr. gordo wrote:If criticism was backed by commonly accepted scripture and commentary then the standard Buddhist view was correctly presented. I'm not talking about debating the subtle points of Gorampa vs. Tsong Khapa, or whether a certain Mahamudra practice requires an empowerment or not. I'm talking about a fairly core concept present in all lineages.


Core? Since when is rebirth a "core" anything? Sounds to me like your being doctrinaire regarding rebirth. I don't have a problem with doctrine, but it does seem a bit out of place where it comes to dharma.

But that said, even if rebirth, however you choose to define that, is a doctrine, RR wasn't discussing doctrine at all anyway. Read the quote again. RR is talking about "belief" in rebirth and not some immutable doctrine. You and I both believe in rebirth, but I rather doubt we believe the same thing. RR is talking about people like you and me looking to our beliefs and looking to see if those beliefs make sense. If they don't make sense, or they become obstacles then we should disgard those beliefs, and that's all he's saying. He's not saying we should tear down some doctrine.
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Heruka » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:02 am

i think core means it is central to the full spectrum of teachings that radiate from it.

we can approach from many different paths and angles, but they all led to Rome so to speak.
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:08 am

Yeshe D. wrote:Everyone is free to draw the line wherever they see fit.


And so what distinguishes Buddhism from Hinduism, or Jainism then? So you would have no issue with throwing out the 4 noble truths? The eightfold path? That's absurd.

I find smug ego-stroking and ranting against their alleged heterodoxy to be more distasteful than what these guys are being accused of doing.


No more distasteful than people who take what they want from Buddhism and discarding what they don't want, but still calling it Buddhism at the end of the day I'm sure.

Chaz wrote:
Core? Since when is rebirth a "core" anything?


Uh, since the Buddha stated so:

"Of course you are befuddled, Vaccha. Of course you are uncertain. When there is a reason for befuddlement in you, uncertainty arises. I designate the rebirth of one who has sustenance, Vaccha, and not of one without sustenance. Just as a fire burns with sustenance and not without sustenance, even so I designate the rebirth of one who has sustenance and not of one without sustenance.""But, Master Gotama, at the moment a flame is being swept on by the wind and goes a far distance, what do you designate as its sustenance then?""Vaccha, when a flame is being swept on by the wind and goes a far distance, I designate it as wind-sustained, for the wind is its sustenance at that time.""And at the moment when a being sets this body aside and is not yet reborn in another body, what do you designate as its sustenance then?""Vaccha, when a being sets this body aside and is not yet reborn in another body, I designate it as craving-sustained, for craving is its sustenance at that time." - Kutuhalasala Sutta SN 44.9


"Long have you (repeatedly) experienced the death of a father... the death of a brother... the death of a sister... the death of a son... the death of a daughter... loss with regard to relatives... loss with regard to wealth... loss with regard to disease. The tears you have shed over loss with regard to disease while transmigrating & wandering this long, long time — crying & weeping from being joined with what is displeasing, being separated from what is pleasing — are greater than the water in the four great oceans."Why is that? 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. 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." - Assu Sutta SN 15.3


Which do you think is more: the streams of blood that, through your being beheaded, have flowed upon this long way, these, or the waters of the four oceans? Long have you been caught as robbers, or highway men or adulterers; and, through your being beheaded, verily more blood has flowed upon this long way than there is water in the four oceans. But how is this possible? Inconceivable is the beginning of this Sa.msaara; not to be discovered is any first beginning of beings, who, obstructed by ignorance and ensnared by craving, are hurrying and hastening through this round of rebirths. - S. XV. 13

"He recollects his manifold past lives,[3] i.e., one birth, two births, three births, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, one hundred, one thousand, one hundred thousand, many aeons of cosmic contraction, many aeons of cosmic expansion, many aeons of cosmic contraction & expansion, [recollecting], 'There I had such a name, belonged to such a clan, had such an appearance. Such was my food, such my experience of pleasure & pain, such the end of my life. Passing away from that state, I re-arose there. There too I had such a name, belonged to such a clan, had such an appearance. Such was my food, such my experience of pleasure & pain, such the end of my life. Passing away from that state, I re-arose here.' Thus he remembers his manifold past lives in their modes & details. - Iddhipada-vibhanga Sutta SN 51.20

a man, after the disappearance of the 3 mental chains personality-belief, skeptical doubt, attachment to rules and ritual; see: samyojana has entered the stream to Nibbāna, he is no more subject to rebirth in lower worlds, is firmly established, destined to full enlightenment. After having passed amongst the divine and human beings only seven times more through the round of rebirths, he puts an end to suffering. Such a man is called 'one with 7 births at the utmost' sattakkhattu-parama. - Pug. 37-39; A. III, 87:

"Excellent, monks. Excellent. It is excellent that you thus understand the Dhamma taught by me. "This is the greater: the blood you have shed from having your heads cut off while transmigrating & wandering this long, long time, not the water in the four great oceans."The blood you have shed when, being cows, you had your cow-heads cut off: Long has this been greater than the water in the four great oceans."The blood you have shed when, being water buffaloes, you had your water buffalo-heads cut off... when, being rams, you had your ram-heads cut off... when, being goats, you had your goat-heads cut off... when, being deer, you had your deer-heads cut off... when, being chickens, you had your chicken-heads cut off... when, being pigs, you had your pig-heads cut off: Long has this been greater than the water in the four great oceans. - Timsa Sutta SN 15.13

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/index-su ... ml#rebirth

Sounds to me like your being doctrinaire regarding rebirth.


If by "doctrinaire" you mean understanding Buddhism as described by the Buddha, yes. How else would you like to qualify what Buddhism is? How else could you define what Buddhism is?

I don't have a problem with doctrine, but it does seem a bit out of place where it comes to dharma.


If anything, it's out of place when it's not considered Dharma.

RR is talking about "belief" in rebirth and not some immutable doctrine. You and I both believe in rebirth, but I rather doubt we believe the same thing. RR is talking about people like you and me looking to our beliefs and looking to see if those beliefs make sense. If they don't make sense, or they become obstacles then we should disgard those beliefs


Which is why hopefully clarification will be made. Like I said previously in the thread, if Ray is saying, "If you don't believe in rebirth, put it aside for now". That's fine. It's another to say "You can drop rebirth from Buddhism and there is no problem". Obviously Ray wasn't clear in terms of the context which is why this wasn't a short, cut and dry thread, but with numerous opinions.

i think core means it is central to the full spectrum of teachings that radiate from it.


Yes Heruka, that is how I'm defining "core".

we can approach from many different paths and angles, but they all led to Rome so to speak.


Exactly why Buddhism has many strains that are valid.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Heruka » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:17 am

all dharma is, is one giant purification exercise, from sutra, to tantra and beyond. through the buddhas compassion, enlightenment, he has shown us the way, as guide and teacher. we are very fortunate indeed.

question;

can a teacher teach if he holds wrong view, can he help others?
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Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:58 am

mr. gordo wrote:
Yeshe D. wrote:Everyone is free to draw the line wherever they see fit.


And so what distinguishes Buddhism from Hinduism, or Jainism then? So you would have no issue with throwing out the 4 noble truths? The eightfold path? That's absurd.

What is demonstrating absurdity is your continual reliance upon drawing fallacious conclusions from what others have said.

mr. gordo wrote:
I find smug ego-stroking and ranting against their alleged heterodoxy to be more distasteful than what these guys are being accused of doing.

No more distasteful than people who take what they want from Buddhism and discarding what they don't want, but still calling it Buddhism at the end of the day I'm sure.

Actually, the former is more distasteful in my book. As is the fallacious argumentation coupled with smug self-righteousness that your replies are demonstrating in this discussion.

All the best,

Geoff
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