has anyone looked into Buddhism?

by poor places 41 Replies latest jw friends

  • leavingwt

    What about Islam? It promotes peace, respect for women and there are over one billion active members. You may also get to wear garments that will easily identify you.

  • Heaven
  • poppers

    changling, I enjoyed your professor's comments very much.

    gubberningbody - I agree, and I would bet so would Buddha. It can be summed up in the following statement, "If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him." Nothing outside yourself is "it", including the most sublime teaching or revered teacher. "It" is only present within oneself now, always - find out what stands between "it" and awakening to it, then attachment dissolves and reality is seen. So attach yourself to nothing - the "me" is the one who forms attachments, but that me doesn't actually exist as a reality, only as an illusion in the mind. That's what Buddhism addresses.

    As changling's professor notes, "To grasp it intellectually is not enough. When we are awakened, we realize our natural state is one of well-being and one in which we can be fully engaged in life as it really is. We are “mindful” of every moment. As you can see, he assumes that our natural state is one of well-being. Life as we experience it is suffering, but suffering is not meant to be a part of life." And to that I will add this: That which is being "mindful" is what you are. Discover that and the rest will follow; discover that directly and it is no longer just an intellectual thing but a living reality.

  • OnTheWayOut

    I am with Jimmy Page, I " just try to glean wisdom from their teachings that can help me in my life." As far as the religious aspect of eastern thought, I am not interested. The great thing about the middle path, particularly with the Tao, is that you don't have to take it all. The most part of the philosophy doesn't demand "belief" in something particular. It's just a different way of looking at things.

    Western philosophy is often about intellect and complicated understanding while eastern philosophy is about acceptance and simplified understanding.

    Example: I googled "How many words should be in a book?" The very "Zen" answer came up: "As many words as it takes to tell the story and not one more."

    While I decided to pursue a more complete answer for what is normal for first-time authors, it still was the best answer. I would not want to stretch out my story simply to fill pages.

  • JWoods

    My little old lady Mai (who escaped from Vietnam in 1975 with her family) is a lifelong Buddhist.

    As far as I can tell, she views it as more of a life philosophy than a traditional western religion with rigid rules and doctrines.

    I like it because they seem to be non-judgemental and generally tolerant of other people.

  • changeling

    JWoods: most agree that Buddhism is not a religion. Lilke you said, it's a philosophy of life.

  • JWoods
    JWoods: most agree that Buddhism is not a religion. Lilke you said, it's a philosophy of life.

    Right. And, I might add that it does encourage self-improvement more than enslaving its people for time or money, like most western "christian" churches seem to always do...

  • poor places
    poor places

    Nice points all around. Whoever made that comment about the Prius drivers, I've definitely thought of that, and how I would never want to turn into one of those hoky people who seem to wear the special clothes and talk the deep talk just to sound cool or something. Maybe it's hard to avoid that, though, as a big lazy American.

    On another note, I was initially attracted to Buddhist teachings because they seem very commonsense (so far) and tolerant of other worldviews. Now, I've looked at what some of you have said--that some teachings assume things like reincarnation that you can't accept without evidence. And that sounds fair to me. But I guess that what I'm looking for is a way of life that is different after being involved with JWs for such a long time. Even a new group of people to associate with is desirable. So for me, developing a personal belief system that is maybe more believable than what Buddhists have come up with isn't necessarily wanted. I guess it depends on your life situation.

  • Mad Sweeney
    Mad Sweeney

    OTWO, are you writing a book? Have you read Orwell's essay "Politics and the English Language"?


  • VoidEater

    leaving: ;-)

    My thoughts seem closest to Zen Buddhism, if a label is needed.

    I find various facets of the practice of compassion very useful. Life has worked better for me when ego is placed in a greater context. Since meditating (1992) I have found a place of calm and "felt sense" that has served me well.

    Reincarnation? As part of a mystical belief set, it doesn't seem important to me - karma, like "serving God out of fear", seems a finger pointing rather than what the finger is pointing to - being conscious to this moment is enough for me.

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