Question ~ Answer Thread

Whether you're exploring Buddhism for the first time or you're already on the path, feel free to ask questions of any kind here.

Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Will » Mon Apr 02, 2012 6:56 am

Wesley1982 wrote:can anyone on earth become a buddhist? . .


If one has enough confidence in the Buddha's wise teachings to 'take refuge', then yes.

Here is what is involved in becoming a Buddhist:

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el282.html
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Mon Apr 02, 2012 1:06 pm

Do you follow a daily routine or daily schedule? . .
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Malcolm » Mon Apr 02, 2012 1:17 pm

Wesley1982 wrote:Do you follow a daily routine or daily schedule? . .



First, find a teacher. Make sure they are qualified by observing their character for a number of years while learning Buddhism at the same time.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Mon Apr 02, 2012 4:53 pm

Namdrol wrote:
Wesley1982 wrote:Do you follow a daily routine or daily schedule? . .



First, find a teacher. Make sure they are qualified by observing their character for a number of years while learning Buddhism at the same time.


I took instruction courses in Orthodox Christianity by a good priest/mentor that I know of. And it led to the study of -Eastern religions-

Maybe online ~ but its unlikely I'll find a Buddhist teacher/mentor in my area.
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Jikan » Mon Apr 02, 2012 5:15 pm

Wesley1982 wrote:
Maybe online ~ but its unlikely I'll find a Buddhist teacher/mentor in my area.


If so, then you'll have to travel some. Nearly all of us do, or have done: either commute from your home to where the teachings are given, or pick up and move to your teacher's area.

But it may well be that there are learning opportunities for you near enough. If you don't mind me asking, what part of the world are you in?
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Paul » Mon Apr 02, 2012 5:16 pm

Wesley1982 wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Wesley1982 wrote:Do you follow a daily routine or daily schedule? . .



First, find a teacher. Make sure they are qualified by observing their character for a number of years while learning Buddhism at the same time.


I took instruction courses in Orthodox Christianity by a good priest/mentor that I know of. And it led to the study of -Eastern religions-

Maybe online ~ but its unlikely I'll find a Buddhist teacher/mentor in my area.


It's worth travelling to go to a good retreat. Where do you live? Have a look at this page to see what groups are nearby: http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/region.php?region_id=1
Look at the unfathomable spinelessness of man: all the means he's been given to stay alert he uses, in the end, to ornament his sleep. – Rene Daumal
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Mon Apr 02, 2012 5:37 pm

Jikan wrote:If you don't mind me asking, what part of the world are you in?


In the United States, the state of Texas central TX/Mexico standard time.

I got a calendar from a Buddhist community their website says http://www.watdallas.org <?> . .but its in Dallas, TX.
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Mon Apr 02, 2012 6:09 pm

I don't know how to read Sanskrit/Pali/Indian/Chinese yet. :?:
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Jikan » Mon Apr 02, 2012 7:09 pm

You can practice and get instruction in plain English. It can help to learn a liturgical language, but it's certainly not necessary for a beginner.

Texas is a big place. El Paso is closer to Los Angeles than Houston. If you're near Dallas, there are a number of options. Here are just a couple.

http://www.dallas.shambhala.org/

http://www.pcddallas.org/
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Zenda » Mon Apr 02, 2012 10:45 pm

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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Mon Apr 02, 2012 10:56 pm

What about the Tao or Teh in Chinese philosophy? . .
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby conebeckham » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:10 pm

Yo, Wesley-

The concept of "Tao" is not really an orthodox Buddhist topic at all. It may have some bearing on Chinese interpretations of Buddhism, perhaps, but it's really a peripheral issue, even then.

You're asking a lot of questions, and Buddha himself stressed the importance of questioning the teachings, weighing them in one's mind. But....I think that frankly, your time is better served, at this stage in your search, by finding some good, basic books on the general concepts of Buddhism, spending some quality time with those books, and keeping an open mind, and accepting that one cannot learn everything about Buddhism overnight.

I believe some book titles were suggested previously. Then, if one wishes to move from a position of intellectual understanding the Dharma and what it's positions on issues may be, to a position of "practice" and experience, one really needs a teacher.

"Buddhism" is a huge, huge, subject...bottomless, really. The varieties of manifestation of the Dharma are more various than the sub-branches of Christianity, in my opinion. But in order to understand the common elements, a couple good books will take you far. In order to put Buddhism into practice, though, no book will do.

I hope these words help put things into some perspective for you.
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 3:08 pm

Yes, that is perspective. I'm not the type of person to ask many questions - that's why I asked if it was ok to ask questions.

I have more experience with Christianity and just became a new beginner at the study of Buddhism.
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Will » Tue Apr 03, 2012 4:06 pm

This is a good short online text on the basics of Buddha's teachings: http://www.budsas.org/ebud/nutshell/nshell00.htm
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby conebeckham » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:06 pm

In addition to reading books, I'd like to encourage you, if possible, to check out actual centers, and maybe attend a meditation session, though it may ben difficult given your location. Reading and studying are wonderful, but a living experience of how practice works, at a beginning level, is also valuable and can't be gotten from books.

Developing a relationship with a teacher takes time, and I'd suggest checking out a variety of traditions, while you're doing your reading...if that's possible.
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:33 pm

WIth so many varieties and choices I like the Shambhala element.
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 4:08 am

ok,

do Buddhists like to travel alot and make journeys? . .
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Josef » Wed Apr 04, 2012 4:17 am

Wesley1982 wrote:ok,

do Buddhists like to travel alot and make journeys? . .


Sure.
There is also the whole tradition of the "wandering yogi".
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Wesley1982 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 4:21 am

ok,

here's a real question.

In the realm of christian thought - it could be said that those who suffered while on earth receive the reward of 'heaven'

In the realm of buddhist thought - could the same be said of those who suffered while on earth were brought into "nirvana" ? . . .

Or is buddhist thought totally different? . .
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Re: Question ~ Answer Thread

Postby Will » Wed Apr 04, 2012 5:40 am

Wesley1982 wrote:ok,

here's a real question.

In the realm of christian thought - it could be said that those who suffered while on earth receive the reward of 'heaven'

In the realm of buddhist thought - could the same be said of those who suffered while on earth were brought into "nirvana" ? . . .

Or is buddhist thought totally different? . .


"Totally different"

1) No one 'brings' anyone into Nirvana - 2) Buddha's main purpose was to show us how to end suffering, which he did (4th Noble Truth) and which only we can do for ourselves.
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