Renounced Catholicism

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

Renounced Catholicism

Postby Epistemes » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:05 am

Tonight I acknowledged to myself and to my partner that I am breaking away from Catholicism for good and am devoting myself strictly to learning and practicing the dharma.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Fu Ri Shin » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:45 am

Courageos act, that. Welcome to the Raft, friend.
"Once delusion is extinguished, your wisdom naturally arises and you don’t differentiate suffering and joy. Actually, this joy and this suffering, they are the same."

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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:16 pm

My family was Catholic but they gave it up for Lent.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Epistemes » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:41 pm

Fu Ri Shin wrote:Courageos act, that.


The courage required was trusting myself where I am now. My partner supports me. In time, I will file an actual defection with the diocese and pursue a dharma teacher.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:51 pm

Funny quotes that I like about Western religious identity:

I'm not really a Jew; just Jew-ish, not the whole hog.
Jonathan Miller

I'm one of those cliff-hanging Catholics. I don't believe in God, but I do believe that Mary was his mother.
Martin Sheen
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby meiji1 » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:22 am

What was the catalyst, if I may ask? I know you've been meditating for the past few months (I think?).
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Epistemes » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:39 am

meiji1 wrote:What was the catalyst, if I may ask? I know you've been meditating for the past few months (I think?).


Which catalyst?

My alienation from the Church has been gradual over a long period of time and thought.

My reason for now telling her is that I needed to get it off my chest.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby meiji1 » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:44 am

The catalyst that caused you to consider yourself a Buddhist.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Epistemes » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:58 am

meiji1 wrote:The catalyst that caused you to consider yourself a Buddhist.


I don't know that I do consider myself one. There are still a lot of basic elements which I know and have thought so little about, like karma. There may be some element of ego which would like to call myself "Buddhist," but I have to see it for what it is and move on. Renouncing Catholicism is more symbolic than pragmatically meaningful. Our conversation opened new doors to my study.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby el_chupacabra » Fri Sep 16, 2011 3:13 am

I'm happy to hear of your partners reaction and that you are supported in your decision, wishing you everything good for the future. :smile:
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby alwayson » Fri Sep 16, 2011 4:35 am

Epistemes wrote:There are still a lot of basic elements which I know and have thought so little about, like karma.


Well the main Buddhist doctrine is:

Dependent Origination / Sunyata.

That should make things easier for you to research.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Quiet Heart » Fri Sep 16, 2011 5:02 am

:smile:
I can understand your decision.
But what I think personally...in my own personal opinion...I would be questioning is why you feel the need to BE only one-or-the-other of the two "choices"?
I could support your choice...it's your choice, and you're free to make it.
But are you sure you're making that choice because you believe it...or is it just that you just want to be part of a group called Buddhists...and that is why you are making that choice?
Only you really know the answer to that question, so only you can truely answer it.
I am not a Catholic so I have no bias there.
But, personally, saying I am a XXXXXX, and not a YYYYYY is something I do not do lightly.
(I am by nature not a joiner of groups).
:smile:
Shame on you Shakyamuni for setting the precedent of leaving home.
Did you think it was not there--
in your wife's lovely face
in your baby's laughter?
Did you think you had to go elsewhere (simply) to find it?
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Kyosan » Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:52 am

It sounds like you have made up your mind about Catholicism, so leaving that makes sense to me. But you don't seem to be certain about Buddhism. You can take your time and decide; there is no rush.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Epistemes » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:42 pm

Quiet Heart wrote:But are you sure you're making that choice because you believe it...or is it just that you just want to be part of a group called Buddhists...and that is why you are making that choice?
...
But, personally, saying I am a XXXXXX, and not a YYYYYY is something I do not do lightly.
....
(I am by nature not a joiner of groups).


Kyosan wrote:It sounds like you have made up your mind about Catholicism, so leaving that makes sense to me. But you don't seem to be certain about Buddhism. You can take your time and decide; there is no rush.
:namaste:


My mind has been made up about Catholicism. I have not been able to recite the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed without cringing for months. And I've wrestled with the absence of a God longer than that.

While I've conditioned myself to be a tribal person, wanting to "fit in," I'm tired of pretending and tired of labels. I'm neither Buddhist nor not a Buddhist.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby alwayson » Fri Sep 16, 2011 3:36 pm

Epistemes wrote:My mind has been made up about Catholicism. I have not been able to recite the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed without cringing for months. And I've wrestled with the absence of a God longer than that.

While I've conditioned myself to be a tribal person, wanting to "fit in," I'm tired of pretending and tired of labels. I'm neither Buddhist nor not a Buddhist.



There may be a God, but he would be a dependently originated God who only misbelieves himself to be the Creator.

In other words God would simply be yet another sentient being who lives in ignorance of dependent origination.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Fri Sep 16, 2011 5:23 pm

alwayson wrote:There may be a God, but he would be a dependently originated God who only misbelieves himself to be the Creator.

In other words God would simply be yet another sentient being who lives in ignorance of dependent origination.


Karma teaches no-thing makes universes out of no-thing. So no problem with "creation" or "ex nihilo".

The finger points to the moon. But the moon also points to the finger. A person is empty. But emptiness is also a person.

It's a shame to be so keen to say that this coffee cup doesn't exist but to be so unwilling to say that this unicorn exists.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby alwayson » Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:20 pm

I have no clue what you are talking about.
Last edited by alwayson on Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:21 pm

I'm neither Buddhist nor not a Buddhist.

Hi friend!What will say that will be your view and action, not the label you or others decide to stick on your "forehead".
Nevertheless, I'm always happy when I hear that someone feels inspired by Dharma teachings. So, you made my day. ;)
I'll be bold and share with you some suggestions. Take what you want and disregard the rest!

Relax, study the Buddharma carefully, take advice from those you can perceive to be quite seasoned and look for a teacher who inspires you. This is more important than deciding what school is best suited, although some fit well with different sorts of personalities. Do all this with ease.

Practice is the main key and my suggestion would be making lots of very small sessions for some time instead of bigger sessions at the beginning. All the theory serves to guide practice as it is the view (or the rejection of views, which can only come much later and well grounded in the knowledge about the reasons why views should be rejected) that will sharpen it.

My advice is that until you consult a teacher, spend some time mastering quiescence meditation (shamatha or, in Tibetan phonetics, shinê, zhiney, ect..). It will pay off in the long run.

Be honest. If you have nagging doubts, ask qualified teachers and friends you trust. Don't force yourself to believe anything, but be ready to consider some more wild assumptions as working hypothesis at least.

Learn to difference what is the "summum bonum" of the teachings and the adornments. Buddhadharma serves humans. One doesn't need to be from a specific ethnicity, race, (whatever one prefers to call it) to practice. Neither does one needs to adopt alien cultural dressings, foods, habits to be a good practitioner. Usually that turns one more into a clown than anything.

Last, if 10 years from now you are still where you are now, something went very wrong along the way.

Have a pleasant journey! :namaste:


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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby alwayson » Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:28 pm

Even Hindus meditate for god's sake.

Buddhism is simply about dependent origination / sunyata.

If he wants to become a Vajrayana practitioner all he needs is a webcast transmission from Namkhai Norbu.
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Re: Renounced Catholicism

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:42 pm

That is your opinion, friend.
Don't force it upon others.
I'm too a student of Chogyal Namhkai Norbu and what you say is over simplistic and, in fact, pretty far from what he teaches.

Best wishes.
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