PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

General forum on the teachings of all schools of Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism. Topics specific to one school are best posted in the appropriate sub-forum.
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monkishlife
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by monkishlife »

PadmaVonSamba wrote: Fri Apr 03, 2020 4:11 pm Suppose today is trash collection day, and there is a bag of garbage on one side of the street, and on the opposite side of the street, a different bag of garbage.
Nobody is disputing the fact that there are two different bags of garbage. But that doesn’t mean either one constitutes an inherently existent self.
Nor is this an assertion that they are one single bag of garbage. If you ask, “since one bag of garbage was already collected, but the other is still on the curb, how is this possible if there is no individual self?” That is an absurd question, but it's like asking how one can be a buddha while another is not a buddha.

The reason why each bag of garbage does not really constitute a self, even though we might conventionally say, “this bag of garbage, itself” is that each bag of garbage is merely a collection of random components (none of which constitutes a “self” either, btw).
Likewise, each being is like that bag of garbage. Nothing exists in the body which wasn’t already on the earth for billions of years in one form or another. Physically, we are only a series of temporarily occurring events, brief coming together of various elements.
Mentally, nothing is occurring but an endless stream of new thoughts and reconstructed thoughts. Is any one of them the “self”? Is the endless steam of thoughts the “self”?

...
Yes, absolutely. You explained it beautifully.

I'm wondering why they don't believe in non-duality in the Theravada traditions. Or do they but explain it differently? But they don't believe in this " *oneness* of emptiness"

Peace and enlightenment.
Malcolm
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by Malcolm »

monkishlife wrote: Thu Apr 09, 2020 7:59 pm But they don't believe in this " *oneness* of emptiness"
Emptiness is free from diversity and unity, because of dependent origination's not ceasing, not arising, not annihilated, not permanent, not going, not coming, not different, not the same...
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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by PadmaVonSamba »

monkishlife wrote: Thu Apr 09, 2020 7:59 pm ...
I'm wondering why they don't believe in non-duality in the Theravada traditions. Or do they but explain it differently? But they don't believe in this " *oneness* of emptiness"
My understanding is that Theravada doesn’t reject the non-self in terms of the subject (the one meditating) but doesn’t assert the emptiness of phenomena (other)
EMPTIFUL.
An inward outlook develops outward insight.
shanyin
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by shanyin »

For some reason I believe it's more important to follow the Buddhist path if I'm going to be taking these medications which I am.

Maybe the no-self doctrine is a little too over my head.
SteRo
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by SteRo »

shanyin wrote: Thu Apr 16, 2020 6:05 am Maybe the no-self doctrine is a little too over my head.
"No-self" is easily misunderstood as an extreme negation. "Not-self" might be more appropriate because the Buddha actually taught what is not self thus neither negating self nor affirming self. But since the world only knows extremes this teaching of the Buddha of course left open the door for extremists: one type of extremists, sravakas, negating self and the other type of extremists, heretics harboring hindu/advaita views, affirming self.
PSM
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by PSM »

I am personally of the opinion that complex PTSD is the cause of about 90% of mental health issues. I think looking into it, especially via Pete Walker's books, would be of use to many people. It's especially interesting to see CPTSD through a Buddhist lense - at least it has been for me.
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Aemilius
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by Aemilius »

PadmaVonSamba wrote: Fri Apr 03, 2020 4:11 pm Suppose today is trash collection day, and there is a bag of garbage on one side of the street, and on the opposite side of the street, a different bag of garbage.
Nobody is disputing the fact that there are two different bags of garbage. But that doesn’t mean either one constitutes an inherently existent self.
Nor is this an assertion that they are one single bag of garbage. If you ask, “since one bag of garbage was already collected, but the other is still on the curb, how is this possible if there is no individual self?” That is an absurd question, but it's like asking how one can be a buddha while another is not a buddha.

The reason why each bag of garbage does not really constitute a self, even though we might conventionally say, “this bag of garbage, itself” is that each bag of garbage is merely a collection of random components (none of which constitutes a “self” either, btw).
Things or material objects have different qualities, a bag of garbage is different from another bag of garbage that holds inside a person's wristwatch that she had accidentally put there through her absent-mindedness. Later the person realised what had happened and ran frantically searching through the collected garbage bags trying to find her lost wristwatch. (This is a real life example). Garbage bags are individual, cars are individual, chairs are individual, tables are individual... All of them are such in relation to the observers, to owners, sellers, workers, etc... We don't normally use the word "self" in relation to things. But we know what we want, we want exactly the right chair, we want the right table, the right car, etc.. Things have individual properties to us, that are important.
svaha
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
Sarvē mānavāḥ svatantrāḥ samutpannāḥ vartantē api ca, gauravadr̥śā adhikāradr̥śā ca samānāḥ ēva vartantē. Ētē sarvē cētanā-tarka-śaktibhyāṁ susampannāḥ santi. Api ca, sarvē’pi bandhutva-bhāvanayā parasparaṁ vyavaharantu."
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1. (in english and sanskrit)
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Karma_Yeshe
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by Karma_Yeshe »

Aemilius wrote: Thu Apr 16, 2020 4:02 pm
Things or material objects have different qualities, a bag of garbage is different from another bag of garbage that holds inside a person's wristwatch that she had accidentally put there through her absent-mindedness. Later the person realised what had happened and ran frantically searching through the collected garbage bags trying to find her lost wristwatch. (This is a real life example). Garbage bags are individual, cars are individual, chairs are individual, tables are individual... All of them are such in relation to the observers, to owners, sellers, workers, etc... We don't normally use the word "self" in relation to things. But we know what we want, we want exactly the right chair, we want the right table, the right car, etc.. Things have individual properties to us, that are important.
With all due respect: Are you really a Buddhist?
Ever heard of the four seals of Buddhadharma?

Everything you describe above is what leads to further, endless clinging to samsara, where of course everybody thinks all kind of stuff, including that there is a self.

KY
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Aemilius
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by Aemilius »

Yes I am buddhist. I have not said that rubbish bags are permanent, or that they exist independent of human beings who make them and collect them. I don't see what causes you think what you say??

In Buddhism there are the categories of general and particular: There are individual instances of certain objects, all which are different. In human perception they look similar enough so that they can be given a general name "rubbish bag". It is a serious error to think that the name or class "rubbish bag" exists independent of the particular instances of objects. This problem whether the general object like "a rubbish bag" exists at all, or how it exists, is dealt in Buddhist Epistemology or Apohavada and for example in the works of Dignaga and Dharmakirti. The human mind treats general words or category words like "rubbish bag" as real objects. Although in the world outside they are separate and individual objects, that differ from one another.
svaha
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
Sarvē mānavāḥ svatantrāḥ samutpannāḥ vartantē api ca, gauravadr̥śā adhikāradr̥śā ca samānāḥ ēva vartantē. Ētē sarvē cētanā-tarka-śaktibhyāṁ susampannāḥ santi. Api ca, sarvē’pi bandhutva-bhāvanayā parasparaṁ vyavaharantu."
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1. (in english and sanskrit)
shanyin
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by shanyin »

My experience with meditation seemed to give me a very subjective focus going through daily life and of the dharma. Letting go of lines of thought and returning to the breath. It was eye-opening in that I could see why teachers like Eckhart Tolle and the late Ram Das put so much emphasis on the now.

Is it possible in thinking that there is no-self or that everything is not-self can bring one away from seeing oneness and interconnectedness? I feel like a zombie. I only feel OK when I drink caffeine and have a smoke. I don't feel like there is a person behind the consciousness or awareness. I even do things that are obviously bad karma. I called Federica of newbuddhist.com a "liar and a coward". I hope someday I can ask for her forgiveness.

Anyway, this was supposed to be a response to the person who responded to me.

Is the four noble truths different in different schools? I think before I got back into drugs and alchohol and then sectioned and medicated I was seeing the eightfold path in a way that could really help me.
tkp67
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by tkp67 »

Stumbled on this and it seemed relevant

https://buddhaweekly.com/scientific-bud ... efits-com/

Scientific Buddhist: Peer Reviewed Studies Demonstrate Buddhist Metta Loving Kindness Meditation Can Slow Aging, Increase Brain Matter, and Decrease PTSD and Schizophrenia —Ten Benefits of Compassion
PSM
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Re: PTSD and Mahayana Buddhism

Post by PSM »

tkp67 wrote: Wed Apr 22, 2020 2:34 pm Stumbled on this and it seemed relevant

https://buddhaweekly.com/scientific-bud ... efits-com/

Scientific Buddhist: Peer Reviewed Studies Demonstrate Buddhist Metta Loving Kindness Meditation Can Slow Aging, Increase Brain Matter, and Decrease PTSD and Schizophrenia —Ten Benefits of Compassion
Metta was taught by the Buddha as a powerful antidote to fear, so it makes perfect sense it helps with PTSD.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .piya.html
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