Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby BFS » Thu Oct 22, 2009 3:51 pm

32. That Tibetan Traditions do not teach the basics, The Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path, etc.

Live streaming on Four Noble Truths by HHDL now

http://www.dalailama.com/page.128.htm
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Fri Oct 23, 2009 8:02 pm

33. If you're enlightened ... you ... talk really ... slow ... about ... things ... you want to ... discuss ... in this ... kinda ... faux peaceful ... calm ... voice ...
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby Luke » Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:12 pm

34. "Buddhists are apathetic and never do anything concrete to help the world."

Real Buddhism involves caring about all living beings in all realms of existence and trying to help them whenever possible.

The Maitreya Project is an excellent example of Buddhists helping people and showing their compassion in a tangible way.
http://www.maitreyaproject.org/en/project/index.html
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby BFS » Sun Oct 25, 2009 3:06 pm

35. That Buddha never taught Mahayana

"The belief that the Mahayana and the Vajrayana teachings were created by someone else is based on the belief the Buddha was just an ordinary man with no extraordinary qualities of enlightenment instead of seeing a Buddha as being a very exceptional being who came into the world to help people out of his great compassion and to lead them to liberation. Once one thinks of the Buddha as an ordinary Indian man, then next one will have doubts as to whether he actually gave the various teachings attributed to him and one begins picking and choosing between teachings of the various vehicles.

It is a mistake to identify the Buddha as an ordinary person and to start thinking that maybe the Buddha didn't have complete knowledge, or was not able to teach a complete range of teachings or that the Buddha could have taught in this place, but not in that place. It is not worth entertaining such doubts because the Buddha was not an ordinary person nor was he a god who if pleased with you will send you to heaven and if displeased throw you into the hell realms. But at the same time, saying the Buddha is not a god doesn't mean that we should think of the Buddha as someone devoid of any special qualities of knowledge, intelligence, and understanding or without any special direct intuition and insight. He was indeed a very special being who gave the complete set of dharma teachings which were not in contradiction to each other. Each has its own relevance. Whoever practices a teaching of any level or vehicle properly will be able to achieve the respective result of that particular path."

Ven. Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby BFS » Sun Oct 25, 2009 3:37 pm

36. That one shouldn't study and practice the Tibetan traditions without a teacher.



"Question: Do we need a guru to get enlightened or is it sufficient just to study Dharma, live a moral life, attend teachings and practice meditation?

His Holiness The Dalai Lama: Of course it is possible to practice, study and lead a moral life without actually seeking a guru. However, you must understand that when you talk about enlightenment, you are not talking about something that can be attained within the next few years but about a spiritual aspiration that may, in some cases, take many lifetimes and eons. If you do not find a qualified teacher to whom you can entrust your spiritual well-being then, of course, it is more effective to entrust yourself to the actual Dharma teachings and practice on that basis."

Four Noble Truths by HHDL

http://www.dalailama.com/page.289.htm
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby tatpurusa » Sat Oct 31, 2009 3:33 pm

37. A very common misconception is that Buddhist believe in karma in a way that would mean that one will be rewarded for his good deeds and punished for his bad deeds in the next life.
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Oct 31, 2009 4:07 pm

Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:33. If you're enlightened ... you ... talk really ... slow ... about ... things ... you want to ... discuss ... in this ... kinda ... faux peaceful ... calm ... voice ...


:lol:
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby BFS » Sat Oct 31, 2009 4:14 pm

38. Wrathful acts or enlightened ferocity is an expression of anger.

Anger is a mental affliction, a destructive emotion.

Wrathful acts or enlightened ferocity is an expression of compassion, it is different from anger, it is not a contorted expression of anger. Wrathful enlightened ferocity is a mind that is completely undistorted and expresses itself very powerfully when needed, it is far more powerful than contorted anger.
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Nov 07, 2009 12:02 am

39. "Buddhists are not allowed to desire anything so cannot play sports or achieve anything either."

Buddhists play sports and some do very well at it. Tiger Woods is a champion golfer. Buddhist athletes do very well at archery and other sports too. Phil Jackson has won more championships in basketball than anyone else, as a player and coach (combined). Jackie Chan, Steven Seagal, Goldie Hawn and numerous others have made a success at acting. Steve Wynn is the highly successful casino mogul in Las Vegas. The Pali term chandha refers to intention, will, and zeal and is used for good and wholesome desires. Not all desires are bad or not allowed.
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby BFS » Sat Nov 07, 2009 5:02 pm

:good: (s)

good postings :thanks:
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Nov 08, 2009 4:19 pm

BFS,

thanks!
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Nov 08, 2009 4:22 pm

Also related to no. 39 above:

40. "Buddhists are not allowed to desire enlightenment, because that is still a form of desire, attachment, and striving."

Again, wholesome desires are allowed. If a person attains enlightenment it is not for selfish reasons. It is not for sensual pleasures. Enlightenment is for your liberation and the liberation of all beings to show compassion and lead others out of suffering. It is for the benefit of all.

(This is more of a misconception Buddhists have, rather than non-Buddhists, from my experience.)
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby Ngawang Drolma » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:39 am

:good:
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Nov 09, 2009 8:17 am

Thanks!

We started with 10, now our list is up to 40. :stirthepot:
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby Luke » Mon Nov 09, 2009 7:19 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:40. "Buddhists are not allowed to desire enlightenment, because that is still a form of desire, attachment, and striving."


I agree that Buddhists are certainly allowed to desire enlightenment. However, I've also heard some lamas say that desiring enlightenment too much can get in the way of actually getting there sometimes.

I know this seems like a contradiction because bodhichitta is all about wanting to attain enlightenment in order to help all other sentient beings attain enlightenment, but the true nature of wisdom in Buddhism always seems to be an apparent contradiction--like the Diamond Sutra and Zen koans indicate.

There always seems to be this sort of "let go of everything and you will gain everything" sort of subtext in Buddhism.
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:06 am

Greetings Luke,

Luke wrote:I agree that Buddhists are certainly allowed to desire enlightenment. However, I've also heard some lamas say that desiring enlightenment too much can get in the way of actually getting there sometimes.


This makes sense even from a conventional self-loathing perspective, when the desire is not immediately fulfilled.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Live in concord, with mutual appreciation, without disputing, blending like milk and water, viewing each other with kindly eyes

Dhamma Wheel (Theravada forum) * Here Comes Trouble
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby malalu » Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:03 pm

Hi Retro and Luke.

I agree with both of you. Even in this case, attachment is very likely to lead to obstacles. Even in our practices, we are constantly reminded not to look for results and such.

OK, sorry! Now back to the misconceptions...
The past is but a present memory or condition, the future but a present projection, and the present itself vanishes before it can be grasped.- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby pink_trike » Sun Nov 15, 2009 4:38 am

I hear this one all the time:

"Buddhism is a religion".
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Nov 15, 2009 4:57 am

pink_trike wrote:I hear this one all the time:
"Buddhism is a religion".


Hi PT,

Okay, now you're getting even more controversial than my last post here, or some of my others. :tongue:

But still good.
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Re: Top Ten Misconceptions About Buddhism

Postby BFS » Sun Nov 15, 2009 3:10 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:
pink_trike wrote:I hear this one all the time:
"Buddhism is a religion".


Hi PT,

Okay, now you're getting even more controversial than my last post here, or some of my others. :tongue:

But still good.

:D

Matthieu Ricard says that when the Dalai Lama is asked the question: "is Buddhism a religion?":

His usual reply is to joke, “Poor Buddhism! Rejected by religions as an atheistic philosophy, a science of the mind; and by philosophers as a religion—there’s nowhere that Buddhism has citizen’s rights. But perhaps that’s an advantage that could allow Buddhism to build bridges between religions and philosophies.”
In essence, we could say that Buddhism is a path of transformation toward enlightenment, a contemplative science, and a rich philosophical tradition from which a wisdom applicable in every instant and in all circumstances is derived.

:thumbsup:
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