Turning Back

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

Turning Back

Postby Thug4lyfe » Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:44 am

Since awakening to Buddhism the term "When you turn back, you reach the farshore" is really starting to seep in for me. I've begainning to discover alot of things and idea that have always been around are actually very good for our society!

Was living as a youth with a high paid job, with the indie scene, athiest/agonistic, left/anarcho politically minded, likes making fun of stupid and religious people, and can't understand why people can't appreciate a kind and smart person like myself?

Then after a rapid period of spiritual mis-adventures I've finally discovered the Dharma with the help of nobel people. I've discovered that many of the idea I used to hold as fake and only "for the right wing" are actually whats keeping our society going! I was a very ignorant and ungrateful person! It turns out these things are actually very useful to keep ourselves happy and alive:
* Family values
* Moral codes set down by religions
* Personal responsibility
* Obeying the law
* Giving to Charities
* Respect my parents
* Not doing drugs

These things are not actually advancement! It's actually me retracing my steps to be back under the protection of the moral majority instead of sinking deeper and further into despair amongst the fringe culture groups!

So please turn back while you can!!!

Also by reading the communication skills of the l33t cultivator on here really puts my own abilities to shame, still alot to learn :bow:
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Quiet Heart » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:40 am

:smile:
Excellant...that's the first stage.
You're beginning to see that there is another reality outside of your immediate sense-perceptions...and that it may have some validity.
Maybe you are also beginning to realise that nothing is independent, having no independent inherent self-referring identity but is in fcat intelinked and interdependent with all other things/objects?
By which I mean not realising this intelectually with your mind, but with your whole being?
So, if you are here's something to ponder.
All Dharmas, all teachings are also illusions...pointing to the one true Dharma.
That true Dharma is the Dharma of the Heart Place...which all other teachings merely point at.
Think about that. (meditate mindfully on it's meaning and it's consequences).

That is stage two.
: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?
from - Judyth Collin
The Layman's Lament
From What Book, 1998, p. 52
Edited by Gary Gach
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Re: Turning Back

Postby meiji1 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:17 pm

I don't know, I come from a similar background and I am still involved in a number of so-called "fringe culture groups" that aren't about bemoaning human helplessness. There are some really wonderful, brilliant people there.

But yes, family, moral codes, obeying the law, donating money/time.. all good things, certainly. I never believed they weren't, not even at the most contrarian and misanthropic stage of life..
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:30 pm

All those "good deeds" should be preceded by the correct intention. They are valuable per se, but much better if done from the heart.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Thug4lyfe » Fri Oct 28, 2011 8:18 pm

Hopefully I won't see those things as "good deeds" anymore and just becomes a habit and the norm.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Dechen Norbu » Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:10 am

The wisdom behind them is what you're looking for. It's that wisdom which allows you to guide your conduct in a positive way. I'm glad for you. You seem to going in the right direction, friend. :smile:

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Re: Turning Back

Postby Thug4lyfe » Mon Oct 31, 2011 7:03 am

oh yea, also forgot to mention that I mah tru gangsta! So if you see me rollin, don't be hatin!

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Re: Turning Back

Postby Kyosan » Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:04 am

I generally agree with your list but there are a couple issues I'd like to bring up. I am not sure what you mean by "family values". Here, in the US, depending on who you ask, it can mean much different things.

I generally believe in obeying the laws because they are generally written for the common good. But there are exceptions. Both Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King practiced nonviolent civil disobedience. During the Vietnam war many young American men fled to Canada to avoid the draft, because they believed that it wrong for them to go to Vietnam and kill people there. Some chose instead to go to prison. All these people committed illegal acts, but to them they were doing the right thing.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Kyosan » Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:46 am

World Heavyweight Champion Muhammad Ali chose to go to prison rather than fight in the Vietnam war.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Thug4lyfe » Tue Nov 01, 2011 5:49 am

I just hope you follow the speed limit when driving, not keeping illicit drugs and do not illegally download. I still need to quit J walking! Why always look to the extreme?

As for the whole family value business, just because the fundie over do it, doesn't mean it's bad. Do we stop being vegetarians because Hitler is one? In New Zealand, we just lack the religious fundemental population to cause these duality issues. Still, it doesn't stop people making fun of Christians. Learning Buddhism actually made me respect Christians alot more, ashamed of alot of things I used to say about them.
Anyway, Just because fundies in America makes a big fuss, it doesn't stop anyone from committing "sins". I hardly think places like San Francisco and New York have those "family value crusading" problems. But I can only get info about America from the tv.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:36 pm

It's easy these days to see extremes everywhere - it's the only thing that'll sell TV time. Most places you go people are far more ordinary that you think.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Kyosan » Tue Nov 01, 2011 6:53 pm

Food_Eatah wrote:I just hope you follow the speed limit when driving, not keeping illicit drugs and do not illegally download. I still need to quit J walking! Why always look to the extreme?

I'm a law abiding citizen, almost always. :D

When driving in the city, I go the same speed as everyone else, which is usually at or below the speed limit. I just follow the people in front of me. When driving on the freeway, I usually go at the speed limit, even if others are going faster. The speed limit on the freeway here is pretty high and I don't like to drive faster than that.

I even avoid taking legal drugs. About 4 months ago, I had surgery and the surgeon gave me a prescription for 60 narcotic pain killers (percocet); I only took 4 of them.

I don't illegally download. I've copied some stuff off of youtube, but don't think that's illegal.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Paul » Tue Nov 01, 2011 7:28 pm

Food_Eatah wrote: I've discovered that many of the idea I used to hold as fake and only "for the right wing" are actually whats keeping our society going!


Yep. "The right wing" as you put it actually have a lot of valid things to say (something not recognised my many idealistic youngsters) but then being pretty conservative myself I would say that.
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"Do not block your six senses; delight in them with joy and ease.
All that you take pleasure in will strengthen the awakened state.
With such a confidence, empowered by the regal state of natural mind,
The training now is simply this: lets your six senses be at ease and free." - Princess Parani
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Kyosan » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:03 pm

Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:It's easy these days to see extremes everywhere - it's the only thing that'll sell TV time. Most places you go people are far more ordinary that you think.

Maybe to you things like the Vietnam war and the civil rights demonstrations aren't real if you have only seen them on TV. But for me they were very real, because I have lived through them. Many very ordinary people participated in the demonstrations. Many very ordinary people fled to Canada to avoid either being drafted or arrested. In fact, I was considering doing that myself but didn't have to because the war ended right before I reached 18 years of age. Civil disobedience has happened in the past for good reason, and it will likely happen in the future for good reason. And it involves ordinary people.

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Re: Turning Back

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:07 pm

Kyosan wrote:
Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:It's easy these days to see extremes everywhere - it's the only thing that'll sell TV time. Most places you go people are far more ordinary that you think.

Maybe to you things like the Vietnam war and the civil rights demonstrations aren't real if you have only seen them on TV. But for me they were very real, because I have lived through them. Many very ordinary people participated in the demonstrations. Many very ordinary people fled to Canada to avoid either being drafted or arrested. In fact, I was considering doing that myself but didn't have to because the war ended right before I reached 18 years of age. Civil disobedience has happened in the past for good reason, and it will likely happen in the future for good reason. And it involves ordinary people.

:namaste:


Wow. Yeah. Thanks for your perspective. :namaste:
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Thug4lyfe » Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:29 pm

When young people today are surrounded by more things to increase the 5 poison in their system and more "theories" to increase their confusion. It's rather narrow minded to encourage civil disobedience. All it will do is making more youth to avert from rebelling against their own faults, instead it will just encourage more blaming others for one's problem.

Things are impermanent, this is not the 60's.

Especially when music is a religion and musicians are prophets...

Why didn't the Buddha round up all the oppressed people in India to over throw and kill the kings and Brahmins? After there is even more heavier systematic racism and exploitation back in the days? The Buddha is definetly charismatic enough to be a revoulationary leader, "fighting against the enemy" would have been much simpler than teaching the universal truth.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Kyosan » Tue Nov 01, 2011 10:19 pm

Food_Eatah wrote:When young people today are surrounded by more things to increase the 5 poison in their system and more "theories" to increase their confusion. It's rather narrow minded to encourage civil disobedience. All it will do is making more youth to avert from rebelling against their own faults, instead it will just encourage more blaming others for one's problem.

Things are impermanent, this is not the 60's.

Especially when music is a religion and musicians are prophets...

Why didn't the Buddha round up all the oppressed people in India to over throw and kill the kings and Brahmins? After there is even more heavier systematic racism and exploitation back in the days? The Buddha is definetly charismatic enough to be a revoulationary leader, "fighting against the enemy" would have been much simpler than teaching the universal truth.

All I am trying to say is that people shouldn't just blindly do what they are told to do just because it's the law. I think that Buddhists, as always, need to use their wisdom and compassion to decide things. That's the case because governments sometimes do unenlightened and harmful things.

Should persons who believed that the Vietnam war was wrong go to Vietnam and kill Vietnamese just because that was required of them by law? Of course not.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Thug4lyfe » Tue Nov 01, 2011 10:53 pm

Kyosan wrote:All I am trying to say is that people shouldn't just blindly do what they are told to do just because it's the law. I think that Buddhists, as always, need to use their wisdom and compassion to decide things. That's the case because governments sometime do unenlightened and harmful things.

Should persons who believed that the Vietnam war was wrong go to Vietnam and kill Vietnamese just because that was required of them by law? Of course not.
:namaste:

Why do you attach obeying the law with the Vietnam war protests? Again this line of thinking just encourage more people to make excuses for their bad behaviour. Many of the "ethic" from that era is continuing to cause harm for people's mind.
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Re: Turning Back

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:36 am

Food_Eatah wrote:
Kyosan wrote:All I am trying to say is that people shouldn't just blindly do what they are told to do just because it's the law. I think that Buddhists, as always, need to use their wisdom and compassion to decide things. That's the case because governments sometime do unenlightened and harmful things.

Should persons who believed that the Vietnam war was wrong go to Vietnam and kill Vietnamese just because that was required of them by law? Of course not.
:namaste:

Why do you attach obeying the law with the Vietnam war protests? Again this line of thinking just encourage more people to make excuses for their bad behaviour. Many of the "ethic" from that era is continuing to cause harm for people's mind.


Kyosan just used the Vietnam war stuff as a clear example. To me, it seemed his main point was this: " I think that Buddhists, as always, need to use their wisdom and compassion to decide things."

As for the the ethic of the 60's, I may be conjecturing because I wasn't born til 76, but it seems like many of those rebelling in the 60's were rebelling against the previous decades' cultural expectations in the U.S. that one blindly conform, fit in, and simply accept the views and traditions passed down to one, instead of thinking for oneself and making decisions based on one's own powers of reason. It seems like the norm prior to the 60s was to accept views, values, and ways of life simply on the strength of the ethos of "that's just the way things are/ that's just the way things have always been done." The 60s in the U.S. was a time for people who'd had enough of being spoon-fed their beliefs about the world around them to question the objectivity of the ethnocentric, male-dominant worldviews they'd inherited and to try to see things from others' perspectives, to understand the how and the why of things, and be more open-minded. To question one's ideas about reality on any level is a quintessential value in Buddhism. Without this openness and drive to question, we'd just go on believing that we are permanent and phenomena are permanent; believing that there's no karma from our thoughts, speech, and actions; that our lot in this life could actually be either all someone else's fault or solely the result of our own individual ingenuity and drive in this life alone; that reality is as it appears to our deluded perception and understanding. For that matter, without that drive to question and compulsion to break the mold if it doesn't fit, few if any of us on this forum who inherited a Judeo-Christian heritage would have had the gall to leave it to pursue a path which actually makes sense to us and which resonates with us. Very few of us here, if any, would have felt entitled to make such a radical choice for ourselves in the 50s. We would have felt immense pressure to suck it up and fall in line like a nice young man or woman does.

Anyway, lastly I think most people who rebelled back in the 60s have come to realize that a middle ground incorporating the sensible, beneficial aspects of these two contrasting groups of values - the conservatism of the 50s and the rebellion against the norm of the 60s - is the best approach, rather than going to extremes in either direction.
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