The most simple approach to Buddhism

General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
Thishumanlife
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by Thishumanlife »

White Lotus wrote: Thu Dec 08, 2022 7:09 pm Just die to the feeling of self. Root it out. When it’s gone you will find suffering has gone and there is the tranquility of nature. Nature is nameless, formless, wordless, conceptless and yet in all things. We have called it shunyata, Ousia, many names and yet it is nameless. Not one not zero.

Just one thing: drop self.

Metta, Tom.
Thank you. Are there strategies you can share to help achieve this?
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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by PadmaVonSamba »

Thishumanlife wrote: Thu Dec 08, 2022 11:37 pm Thank you. Are there strategies you can share to help achieve this?
Start with proper breathing meditation.
It doesn’t get any simpler than that.
To ‘drop the self’ you need to drop that which the experience of ‘self’ clings to, meaning arising thoughts.

In proper meditation, you focus the mind undistractedly (which of course, just opens the floodgates of distractive thoughts, all of which support clinging to a ‘self’), and you practice not clinging to arising thoughts.

When one learns not to cling to arising thoughts, then one eventually learns to be free from clinging to the illusion ‘self’.
EMPTIFUL.
An inward outlook develops outward insight.
White Lotus
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by White Lotus »

It takes time and practice. When you are ready you will know what to do. It’s a process that results in a sort of joy. Be patient. You know spring comes naturally.

For me intention and breath and the blessings of the wise were the final stage. It’s about experience and practice more than knowledge.

Be blessed, be well.

Best wishes from Tom.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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kirtu
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by kirtu »

The most simple Mahayana approach is reliance on Amitabha. Having said that, as the reliance/ relationship progresses, Amitabha could indeed lead one to Vajrayana or Ati/Dzogchen.

So the point is that Amitabha may or may not lead one to other practices, etc.
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Even if you practice only for an hour a day with faith and inspiration, good qualities will steadily increase. Regular practice makes it easy to transform your mind. From seeing only relative truth, you will eventually reach a profound certainty in the meaning of absolute truth."
Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche

"Most all-knowing Mañjuśrī, ...
Please illuminate the radiant wisdom spirit
Of my precious Buddha nature."
HH Thinley Norbu Rinpoche
White Lotus
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by White Lotus »

If Amitabah can convince you that Suffering is a delusion, but pain is real… what a relief. Can now enjoy life. Every time you hurt you ask: is this suffering? It hurts, yes, but is it suffering. See what you find.

Suffering is the great trick. See that and there is no worry about the future. Everything becomes easier. There is enjoyment of life after years of delusion.

Do you have to drop Self? Only if it hinders you from letting go of Suffering.

Feel things as they really are. Mindfulness training can be helpful in this respect. The main thing to ask when in pain is whether one is suffering.

I hope this answers the question: How does one drop self? It may not be necessary if you can see the delusion of suffering.

As things develop one may no longer grasp notions of self and no self. One just practices: “this hurts, but is it suffering”.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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KeithA
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by KeithA »

Thishumanlife wrote: Tue Dec 06, 2022 3:26 am Hello. I have been browsing this forum and there is an abundance of amazing information and content. I have also spent the past 7 years reading about mindfulness, spirituality, Buddhism, meditation, etc. A very detailed in-depth read recently was “Why Buddhism is True.”

But at this point, I am longing for simplicity. What advice can you all share on how to approach Buddhism in the most simple way? Easy to understand and implement.

Thank you!
These kinds of threads usually end up with people championing their chosen way of practice. So, here is a Zen take. It doesn’t get any simpler than the words in the signature below. Both simple and direct.

Good luck!
Keith
When walking, standing, sitting, lying down, speaking,
being silent, moving, being still.
At all times, in all places, without interruption - what is this?
One mind is infinite kalpas.

New Haven Zen Center
Agnikan
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by Agnikan »

What advice can you all share on how to approach Buddhism in the most simple way?
I asked OpenAI this very question, and this is what I got:
Buddhism is a philosophical and spiritual tradition that originated in ancient India and is based on the teachings of the Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama. It is a religion that emphasizes the cultivation of mindfulness, wisdom, and compassion, and encourages individuals to follow a path of self-discovery and self-improvement.

One simple way to approach Buddhism is to begin by learning about the core teachings and practices of the tradition. This could include studying the Four Noble Truths, which outline the nature of suffering and the path to its cessation, and the Eightfold Path, which outlines the ethical and moral principles that guide the behavior of Buddhists.

Another way to approach Buddhism is to find a community of practitioners to learn from and share your experiences with. Many Buddhist communities offer classes, retreats, and other opportunities to learn about and practice Buddhism.

It is also helpful to find a teacher or mentor who can provide guidance and support as you begin your journey. A teacher can help you understand the teachings and practices of Buddhism in a deeper way and offer personalized advice and support as you work to integrate these teachings into your life.

Finally, it is important to remember that Buddhism is not a set of beliefs that one must adhere to blindly, but rather a way of life that encourages individuals to question and explore their own experiences and beliefs. As such, it is important to approach Buddhism with an open and curious mind, and to be willing to challenge and question your own assumptions and beliefs.
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dorje.yignyen
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by dorje.yignyen »

I've found the Heart Sutra of the Perfection of Wisdom to be a very simple and effective description of a conception of sunyata. Bear in mind that whatever conception of sunyata you may develop from it is only that: A conception, and nothing more.

I also love the koan, One Note of Zen:
After Kakua visited the emperor he disappeared and no one knew what became of him. He was the first Japanese to study Zen in China, but since he showed nothing of it, save one note, he is not remembered for having brought Zen into his country.

Kakua visited China and accepted the true teaching. He did not travel while he was there. Meditating constantly, he lived on a remote part of a mountain. Whenever people found him and asked him to preach he would say a few words and then move to another part of the mountain where he could be found less easily.

The emperor heard about Kakua when he returned to Japan and asked him to preach Zen for his edification and that of his subjects.

Kakua stood before the emperor in silence. He then produced a flute from the folds of his robe, and blew one short note. Bowing politely, he disappeared.

Source: (https://ashidakim.com/zenkoans/68onenoteofzen.html)
.

Make of it what you will. I hope everyone can find something for themselves in these works.
jimwolfe81
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by jimwolfe81 »

Open up to this moment, as it is. No holding back.
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Ayu
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by Ayu »

jimwolfe81 wrote: Fri Dec 30, 2022 11:47 pm Open up to this moment, as it is. No holding back.
You regard this as “most simple"?
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Kim O'Hara
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by Kim O'Hara »

Ayu wrote: Sat Dec 31, 2022 9:57 am
jimwolfe81 wrote: Fri Dec 30, 2022 11:47 pm Open up to this moment, as it is. No holding back.
You regard this as “most simple"?
:smile:
We may have run into a hidden conflict in the OP, which was -
Thishumanlife wrote: Tue Dec 06, 2022 3:26 am ... What advice can you all share on how to approach Buddhism in the most simple way? Easy to understand and implement.
The conflict I mean is that answers which are easy to understand may give so little practical guidance that they are not at all easy to implement. jimwolfe81's post is a good example.

The converse is also true: answers which are easy to implement may be so complicated that they are not easy to understand. I think we've had a couple of those, too.

:namaste:
Kim
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dorje.yignyen
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by dorje.yignyen »

I love the many different responses to the deceptively simple question the OP posed. So much diversity among the Sangha. Truly, as many different ways as there are grains of sand in the Ganges. All united in the same flowing river among many rivers that flow out to the same system of ocean, and beyond.
narhwal90
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by narhwal90 »

I think the Nichiren/SGI take on the question of simplicity would be to chant daimoku and find out. The essential practice is that simple; belief, paraphernalia and so on are not required though helpful in the long run. OTOH there is profound value in engaging with the community of practitioners; personally I've found the support, example, encouragement vitally important in sustaining practice. I'd make the same statement wrt Zen as well.
Natan
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by Natan »

seeker242 wrote: Tue Dec 06, 2022 3:20 pm Dhammapada 183. To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.

Sums it up pretty well :)
+1
Natan
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Re: The most simple approach to Buddhism

Post by Natan »

Thishumanlife wrote: Tue Dec 06, 2022 3:26 am Hello. I have been browsing this forum and there is an abundance of amazing information and content. I have also spent the past 7 years reading about mindfulness, spirituality, Buddhism, meditation, etc. A very detailed in-depth read recently was “Why Buddhism is True.”

But at this point, I am longing for simplicity. What advice can you all share on how to approach Buddhism in the most simple way? Easy to understand and implement.

Thank you!
I'll throw my hat in for Bodhichitta, Great Compassion. Simply studying all the various ways of describing its actualization and contemplating those words is really a very amazing practice. It's the foundation of Mahayana and Vajrayana, thus without contemplation of Bodhicitta nothing else will work or help. It's definitely a stand alone practice. So I would think it's the simplest of all methods. It's importance gets lost in these discussions about high methods.
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