"Free Belief Buddhism"

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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Chaz » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:41 pm

mr. gordo wrote:Huseng's standard by the way is the standard of the Buddha himself.



No it isn't.
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:42 pm

Pero wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:Yeah, sure, that's a great way of looking at bodhisattva vows....anytime you break them, just renew them. :roll:


Come on now Gordo-dono. :smile:


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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:43 pm

Chaz wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:Huseng's standard by the way is the standard of the Buddha himself.



No it isn't.


Good retort. Which sutra is that from?
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Pero » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:44 pm

mr. gordo wrote:
Pero wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:Yeah, sure, that's a great way of looking at bodhisattva vows....anytime you break them, just renew them. :roll:


Come on now Gordo-dono. :smile:


Your words, not mine.


What? (scratches head)
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:45 pm

Chaz wrote:
A belief in a literal post-mortem rebirth is fine, but hardly applicable to to here and now unless you suddenly find yourself dying. Otherwise, PMR is a future matter and until the moment of death and disolution arrives, it is nothing. So, it's hardly worth talking about.



We have a long journey to make through the six realms of samsara. We should approach the Dharma like a sailor making his meticulous preparations for a voyage around the world, and prepare ourselves properly for our far longer journey ...

- H.H. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:48 pm

Pero wrote:What? (scratches head)


Chaz wrote:[ I probably commited a root downfall or two within hours of taking my vows :(. The first bhumi is still a ways off, I guess. Luckily the Vows can always be renewed.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby conebeckham » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:50 pm

Chaz-

I think that, if you go back and read what Husang was saying, and what you originally posted, you'll find that (I think) your words may have led Huseng to the impression that your teacher explicitly states that clinging and attachment lead to suffering. What's not clear, here, is whether said teacher implicitly indicates rebirth is also a result. Huseng perhaps assumed, based on your statement, that your teacher explicitly DENIED rebirth as a result here. Huseng is simply stating that a Buddhist teacher who explicitly DENIES rebirth as a result of clinging and attachment is at variance with every legitimate Buddhist tradition I'm aware of....

Pero is on point, in my opinion. Huseng, also, is correct--but I think this whole situation can be clarified quite simply. Do you assert that your teacher, not having taught EXPLICITLY that attachment and clinging lead to rebirth, has taught EXPLICTLY that they ONLY lead to suffering? Or, as is more likely, does your teacher subscribe to the mainstream Buddhist "understanding" that rebith is, in fact, part and parcel of suffering, and the logical extension or result of clinging and attachment, after the death of this current sentient manifestation?

(I believe I know the answer, and I know your teacher as well...so there's no need to answer here, I'm just trying to EXPLICTLY flesh out where the misunderstanding arose....)

I understand your position re This Lifetime, Chaz.....but I think you will find that your teacher has a broader, more vast view of "transmigration" (for lack of a better word--we could say "series of rebirths," I suppose)--I'd bet he is not merely concerned with the travails of this one particular existence. "Mind Beyond Death," after all.......
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Pero » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:04 pm

Chaz wrote:correction. in my text it leads to "birth". Now that may mean "rebirth" and it may not. The way the Nidannas were presented to me (by teachers authorized by my guru teaching from texts he prepared), they have a broader application than simply post-mortem rebirth. They are also (and more importantly I might add) applied to each moment - beginning with ignorance and leading to birth and death.


Of course, but that still doesn't mean they don't lead to rebirth. I looked into my book, and also the Illuminator dictionary and in both it does say just "birth" too. However the comments on it reffer to it as rebirth.

A belief in a literal post-mortem rebirth is fine, but hardly applicable to to here and now unless you suddenly find yourself dying. Otherwise, PMR is a future matter and until the moment of death and disolution arrives, it is nothing. So, it's hardly worth talking about.


Not true. If you don't believe in rebirth there's a bunch of practices (in Tantra and Dzogchen anyway) that you do during your life that lose a lot if not all of their meaning.

If DPR has no problem with Andrew teaching us on the Bardo, then one has to say that DPR is adharmic regarding literal post-mortem rebirth.


I don't understand. How did you come to such a conclusion?
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Pero » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:09 pm

mr. gordo wrote:
Pero wrote:What? (scratches head)


Chaz wrote:[ I probably commited a root downfall or two within hours of taking my vows :(. The first bhumi is still a ways off, I guess. Luckily the Vows can always be renewed.


Yes, I don't think Chaz meant quite the way you got it. For example I'm happy that I can restore my samayas too, doesn't mean I go around breaking them just because I can restore them later (or that I care less about breaking them) you know. :smile:
Although many individuals in this age appear to be merely indulging their worldly desires, one does not have the capacity to judge them, so it is best to train in pure vision.
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:16 pm

Pero wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:
Pero wrote:What? (scratches head)


Chaz wrote:[ I probably commited a root downfall or two within hours of taking my vows :(. The first bhumi is still a ways off, I guess. Luckily the Vows can always be renewed.


Yes, I don't think Chaz meant quite the way you got it. For example I'm happy that I can restore my samayas too, doesn't mean I go around breaking them just because I can restore them later (or that I care less about breaking them) you know. :smile:


Understood Pero. I'm not quite sure what Chaz means the majority of the time.

If I'm correct in that Chaz studes with Shambhala, then they believe in rebirth. I have a friend that studies with Shambhala and I know they are a solid organization.
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Chaz » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:27 pm

mr. gordo wrote:Understood Pero. I'm not quite sure what Chaz means the majority of the time.


Don't worry gordo, you're not alone. My wife for instance ......


If I'm correct in that Chaz studes with Shambhala, then they believe in rebirth.


I'm not a member of Shambhala. At least not any more. I was a dues-paying member some years back and I'm still "kinda" close socially. The various Kagyu, Nyingma and Shambhala sanghas around here tend to be that way, largely due to the members having a certain teacher in common in the past. We even work together on certain special events. When the 17th karmapa came through town a few years ago, the Nalandabodhi, Mangala Shri Bhuti and Shambhala Sanghas in the area teamed up to host the visit. A lot of these people have known each other since the '70s. It's really kinda neat.
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Chaz » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:51 pm

Pero wrote:
Chaz wrote:If DPR has no problem with Andrew teaching us on the Bardo, then one has to say that DPR is adharmic regarding literal post-mortem rebirth.


I don't understand. How did you come to such a conclusion?



Good catch. I really did screw that up, didn't I.

So if I may clarify.......

If Ponlop Rinpoche doesn't have a problem with Andrew Holecek teaching his students on the Bardos (and I as I understand them, a very traditional teaching), then what possible problem would he have with literal post-mortem rebirth. The Bardo teachings are all about post-mortem rebirth. If DPR has a problem with those teachings, they would never be given in one his centers. I don't think DPR is in any way adharmic on the subject to post-mortem rebirth. he just doesn't place the same level of importance on those teaching as Huseng and gordo do.

But more on that a little later.
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Astus » Mon Jan 17, 2011 11:54 pm

As you're discussing some Tibetan teachers, here's one I read yesterday,

"Some people find comfort in thinking that death is just like a fire that was put out or water that dried up. But death isn't at all like that. According to the words of the fully enlightened Buddha and the many texts of the bodhisattvas, the mind doesn't die. When the body dies, the mind remains under the power of habitual patterns and karma. Thus, those who trust the Buddha and the tradition he inspired will believe in birth, death, and the cause and effect of karmic actions."

(Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche - Repeating the Words of the Buddha, Rangjung Yeshe Pub., 1992. p. 95)
"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: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby ground » Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:04 am

Astus wrote:"... the mind doesn't die. When the body dies, the mind remains under the power of habitual patterns and karma. Thus, those who trust the Buddha and the tradition he inspired will believe in birth, death, and the cause and effect of karmic actions."

(Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche - Repeating the Words of the Buddha, Rangjung Yeshe Pub., 1992. p. 95)


Please allow me one critical remark (no offence intended)
I wonder whether what one may interprete as "reification" of mind (i.e. reification one of the aggregates) is a characteristic of tibetan buddhism only or is it a characteristic of the whole of Mahayana ...


Kind regards

PS: The Buddha taught re-birth, no doubt and I think that rebirth is an essential part of buddhism and that it is wrong to reject it.

Edit: The view above may be a necessary consequence of Tathagata-Garba teachings and of teachings focusing so strongly on "nature of mind" and/or "emptiness of other" (just a speculation).
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby muni » Tue Jan 18, 2011 9:02 am

Astus wrote:As you're discussing some Tibetan teachers, here's one I read yesterday,

"Some people find comfort in thinking that death is just like a fire that was put out or water that dried up. But death isn't at all like that. According to the words of the fully enlightened Buddha and the many texts of the bodhisattvas, the mind doesn't die. When the body dies, the mind remains under the power of habitual patterns and karma. Thus, those who trust the Buddha and the tradition he inspired will believe in birth, death, and the cause and effect of karmic actions."

(Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche - Repeating the Words of the Buddha, Rangjung Yeshe Pub., 1992. p. 95)


Yogi Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche? Whether our being remain deluded or mind is beyond karmic birth and dead.
Many teachings when we take one part are like contradicting each other.
Suiting words are so subtle good to feed grasping is me told. We can go out of these limitations.

Small note: when one realizes that empty mind never arises, than it can seem that you change bodies but you aren't moving from empty nature of your mind which is not taint by karma or habitual tendencies. Padmasambhava.
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Luke » Tue Jan 18, 2011 12:26 pm

Chaz wrote:A belief in a literal post-mortem rebirth is fine, but hardly applicable to to here and now unless you suddenly find yourself dying. Otherwise, PMR is a future matter and until the moment of death and disolution arrives, it is nothing. So, it's hardly worth talking about.

We are dying every moment. We are not growing younger over time. We are not immortal. We are dying.

Those who talk of momentary rebirth often forget about momentary death.

Additionally, our present human body is quite fragile and we could die suddenly at any moment.

Both these facts imply that death is not some distant thing at all, and it may come far sooner than we think!

These facts make a serious Buddhist practitoner realize that he/she should stop wasting time on foolish or negative things and that he/she should regularly practice and study Dharma correctly with the desire to benefit other beings.

I recommend that you read Shantideva. His words clearly describe the mindset of a Bodhisattva.

"(32) My disturbing emotions are long-standing enemies,
Without a beginning or an end.
No other enemy can be like that,
For such a long time.

(39) If wounds, without even some purpose, inflicted by enemies,
Are held up like ornaments on the body,
Then why are sufferings troublesome to me,
Who impeccably strive to fulfill the Great Purpose?

(40) If fishermen, outcastes, peasants and the like,
Even with the thought of merely their livelihoods,
Endure such sufferings as heat and cold,
Why aren’t the likes of me patient for the sake of the happiness
of wandering beings?"

http://www.berzinarchives.com/web/x/nav ... 05749.html
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby neverdowell » Tue Jan 18, 2011 12:40 pm

mr. gordo wrote:We have a long journey to make through the six realms of samsara. We should approach the Dharma like a sailor making his meticulous preparations for a voyage around the world, and prepare ourselves properly for our far longer journey ...

- H.H. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche


Incidentally, I like that quote! It reminds me of Lama Zopa Rinpoche:
The Kadampa geshes said, Look far ahead. Generate a vast mind. Don't squeeze yourself. Since your objective is to achieve enlightenment, you have to look far ahead, just as when you're traveling to somewhere very distant, you have to generate a strong determination to go there. You have to look far ahead and generate a vast mind. The third advice is don't squeeze yourself. Don't allow yourself to become stressed out, thinking, "Oh, I have to do all this!" With a vast, brave mind, think, "I'm going to do all this. Even if it takes many, many years, I'm going to do it." When you do follow the advice "don't squeeze yourself," your mind naturally relaxes. Your mind is not stressed, not uptight, which causes lung, or wind disease.

To develop bodhichitta, which is the actual practice, you need to develop such compassion that you simply cannot bear others being tormented by suffering. But in order to develop this compassion, you must know exactly how you yourself are plagued by suffering. And you must understand that the whole of samsara is by nature suffering. But first you must fear the lower realms, for without this you will have no repudiation of celestial and human happiness. You must therefore train your mind in the small- and medium- scope parts of the path. -- Pabongka Rinpoche
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Luke » Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:40 pm

I just wanted to say that HH the Dalai lama avoids all these issues by teaching what he calls "secular ethics." These are generally useful teachings for people who don't have faith in any religion. He doesn't label these teachings as Buddhism (although His Holiness' every thought is very Buddhist!), so he sidesteps any trouble which might result by giving a small collection of assorted teachings derived from Buddhism the name "Buddhism."
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Jikan » Sun Feb 06, 2011 12:53 am

Jikan wrote:Some of the questions that came up for me while reading this:

Are "the once-human Buddhas and Bodhisattvas" usually presented as "the decisive agents of salvation" in Zen generally and the Taego school in particular?

If so, and also assuming that Batchelor's position is as the author describes it, does an atheistic attitude on the part of a student negate or preclude or make impossible the beneficent activities of the bodhisattvas in their lives? That is: do you need to believe in the Vows of the Cry Regarder in order to be helped in any way by her, or do bodhisattvas just meet beings where they are and help where they can regardless of their adherence or doctrine?


I'd like to take this thread back to the original post, beyond the discussion of rebirth as such and toward one of the implications of an agnostic attitude toward rebirth in Rev. Lissabet's response to Batchelor (quoted above). Kirtu and Astus have shed some light on this; I'd like to know in more detail how this works in contemporary Zen schools in North America & Europe, and in the Taego school (Lissabet's school) in particular...
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Re: "Free Belief Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:26 am

Pero wrote:My own teacher for example rarely mentions this. In fact I think I can remember only one time that he (probably) talked about it out of the numerous times he taught (since I started following him). However if you take a look into a base book he himself wrote, it's quite clear this is the case. So while he doesn't mention it (and other things), but he often says that everyone should try to study this book (too bad I don't listen to this advice much hehe). He doesn't explicitly teach many things because he expects/wants us to do a bit of work on our own.


In my experience I've heard him mention it many times, but maybe not as the primary topic. When he teaches or gives transmissions of practices and mantras which he says purify the karmic vision/tendencies of the six realms of existence- this is a reference to transmigration. Similarly, anything related to the Bardo and Bardo teachings are automatically inseparable from discussing rebirth, and I've heard him mention the Bardo quite often. . . especially when it comes to the Dzogchen practitioner recognizing their own primordial wisdom after death. . .
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
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