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Thirteen Orphans
Dec 2, 2012

The principles expressed in the martial arts make up the backbone of my philosophy.

Very interesting, thank you!

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Yorkshire Pudding
Nov 24, 2006



As someone who has meditated and identified as Buddhist for around 15 years, but never practiced in a sangha, how do I go about finding one? There's a few different temples and backgrounds in my area, but they all come from different backgrounds and sects.Given that I don't really know anything about the lineages or the differences among them, should I just go shop around and find one that I like?

Paramemetic
Sep 29, 2003






Fallen Rib

Pretty much shop around, do some research to see what they're into if you like, what their ideas are that you like or don't like. Usually the differences will be either extremely big and immediately obvious in terms of aesthetic and atmosphere (e.g. a Zen center vs. a Tibetan Buddhist center) or else barely evident at all until you've been at it for a while (e.g. between a Kagyu center or a Nyingma center).

You can get some good hot takes in here also just posting "hey what are these guys about," we have a pretty good and diverse representation in the thread.

Yorkshire Pudding
Nov 24, 2006



I'm in the Kansas City area, and there's a few around here I've looked at (but haven't visited).

https://www.rimecenter.org/ Seems to be sort of nondenominational but with general Tibetan focus.

http://www.templebuddhistcenter.com/ claims to be a "Western Buddhist Temple" which kind of puts me off a bit.

https://kansascitybuddhistcenter.wildapricot.org/ Kansas City Buddhist Center also seems to be a mix of backgrounds

https://kansaszencenter.org/ Looks to be the local Zen temple

Goldreallas XXX
Oct 22, 2009


Yorkshire Pudding posted:

I'm in the Kansas City area, and there's a few around here I've looked at (but haven't visited).

https://www.rimecenter.org/ Seems to be sort of nondenominational but with general Tibetan focus.

http://www.templebuddhistcenter.com/ claims to be a "Western Buddhist Temple" which kind of puts me off a bit.

https://kansascitybuddhistcenter.wildapricot.org/ Kansas City Buddhist Center also seems to be a mix of backgrounds

https://kansaszencenter.org/ Looks to be the local Zen temple

Rime means "non sectarian". Historically different sects of Tibetan buddhism have been at each others necks, the Rime movement was an effort from Eastern Tibet to integrate different lineages and streams of teachings from different sects into one another. The guy "Lama Chuck" claims to be a ngakpa (lay yogi) and has connections with Ka-Nying (i.e. Kagyu / Nyingma) and Gelug schools, which is classical Rime. Everyone forgets about the Sakya. Apparently they actually have a geshe (kinda like Gelug equivalent of Dr. of divinity) in residence.

I can't really talk meaningfully about the other centers but that one at least doesn't ring any alarm bells. He actually mentions his teachers and lamas which is kind of rare for yt folk running a center, which is always encouraging.

Paramemetic
Sep 29, 2003






Fallen Rib

Goldreallas XXX posted:

Rime means "non sectarian". Historically different sects of Tibetan buddhism have been at each others necks, the Rime movement was an effort from Eastern Tibet to integrate different lineages and streams of teachings from different sects into one another. The guy "Lama Chuck" claims to be a ngakpa (lay yogi) and has connections with Ka-Nying (i.e. Kagyu / Nyingma) and Gelug schools, which is classical Rime. Everyone forgets about the Sakya. Apparently they actually have a geshe (kinda like Gelug equivalent of Dr. of divinity) in residence.

I can't really talk meaningfully about the other centers but that one at least doesn't ring any alarm bells. He actually mentions his teachers and lamas which is kind of rare for yt folk running a center, which is always encouraging.

I will say also that it is a huge, tremendous boost of credibility, to me, that the current spiritual director, in his ngakpa robes, is wearing a red shirt under his zen. There are rules that vary among traditions but when people are pretending at being ngakpas they usually wear a white shirt which has implications in a lot of traditions, more so if it's being done for official portraiture.

I like the place, it looks well organized and well coordinated. I suspect the membership are isolated from seeing how the sausage is made effectively. It seems to be a large enough center to sustain a kid's program, which is great.

I rejoice in the merit of this center.

Yorkshire Pudding
Nov 24, 2006



I will check it out then. Itís got some times that work well for me too.

Iíll report back in a few weeks.

Goldreallas XXX
Oct 22, 2009


Paramemetic posted:

I will say also that it is a huge, tremendous boost of credibility, to me, that the current spiritual director, in his ngakpa robes, is wearing a red shirt under his zen. There are rules that vary among traditions but when people are pretending at being ngakpas they usually wear a white shirt which has implications in a lot of traditions, more so if it's being done for official portraiture.

I like the place, it looks well organized and well coordinated. I suspect the membership are isolated from seeing how the sausage is made effectively. It seems to be a large enough center to sustain a kid's program, which is great.

I rejoice in the merit of this center.

Yeah I noticed that too. No white-person dreads though!

Ordained Ngakpa often take a vow to never cut their hair again as after empowerment it is regarded as a celestial mansion of the Dakinis. I believe some other traditions have something similar with fingernails (Tibetan Buddhism can get weird about fingernails in places). It's all about transcending your hopes and fears and living in a graveyard and rolling with the wrathful deities. Fortunately very few lamas will seriously expect their western disciples to maintain that vow.

Yorkshire Pudding
Nov 24, 2006



New question: I have really inflexible hips and knees, so even sitting basic cross-legged for me is hard. I basically have to be sitting against a wall or something, which tells me my posture isnít good.

I bought a meditation bench to sit seiza style, but my issue is that I can feel a lot of stress in my shoulders and neck from my hands having nowhere to sit. My lower back always feels fairly tense, but that may just be me getting used to sitting upright like this. And recommendations?

Paramemetic
Sep 29, 2003






Fallen Rib

Yorkshire Pudding posted:

New question: I have really inflexible hips and knees, so even sitting basic cross-legged for me is hard. I basically have to be sitting against a wall or something, which tells me my posture isn’t good.

I bought a meditation bench to sit seiza style, but my issue is that I can feel a lot of stress in my shoulders and neck from my hands having nowhere to sit. My lower back always feels fairly tense, but that may just be me getting used to sitting upright like this. And recommendations?

We tend to get a lot of postural bad habits over time. Regarding sitting, most people have a hard time because they don't sit in the proper cross-legged style, which usually involves a cushion to raise the rear end above the knees, which should be resting on the ground to create a tripod.

For the back, draw the shoulders back slightly "like a vulture" and make sure your head is neutral with your head slightly lowered like you were holding an egg longways between your chin and the top of your breastplate.

Your hands can rest on your knees, or cup them and rest them right about under the navel, held there by the tension of drawing the shoulders back.

Basic posture is knees down, hands on knees or folded at the navel but not resting in the lap, rear end elevated, spine "straight" so that the head is sitting neutrally on the top of the spine which is over the tailbone (naturally curving), shoulders back, head leaning slightly forward as described, tongue touching roof of mouth, eyes resting naturally.



After saying all that though, the most important thing is not having strain or tension on the body. Stability is the second most important thing because if the body is unstable the mind is unstable. If you've gotta sit on a chair with your feet on the ground, that's better than on a cushion where you're uncomfortable or unstable. Remember that many East Asians sit on the floor and crouch routinely and habitually and so don't expect to have the same flexibility and comfort levels. Work with the body you've got.

Nude Hoxha Cameo
Sep 29, 2007






Yorkshire Pudding posted:

I'm in the Kansas City area, and there's a few around here I've looked at (but haven't visited).

https://www.rimecenter.org/ Seems to be sort of nondenominational but with general Tibetan focus.

http://www.templebuddhistcenter.com/ claims to be a "Western Buddhist Temple" which kind of puts me off a bit.

https://kansascitybuddhistcenter.wildapricot.org/ Kansas City Buddhist Center also seems to be a mix of backgrounds

https://kansaszencenter.org/ Looks to be the local Zen temple

One other possibility if you happen to have an interest in Zen is Treeleaf, an online sangha run by Jundo Cohen, another student of Nishijima (Brad Warnerís teacher). I havenít personally tried that approach, since Iím lucky enough to have a nearby sangha, but Jundo seems to have a good head on his shoulders, and they have a very traditional (albeit remote) jukai program.

https://www.treeleaf.org/

Nude Hoxha Cameo
Sep 29, 2007






Yorkshire Pudding posted:

New question: I have really inflexible hips and knees, so even sitting basic cross-legged for me is hard. I basically have to be sitting against a wall or something, which tells me my posture isnít good.

I bought a meditation bench to sit seiza style, but my issue is that I can feel a lot of stress in my shoulders and neck from my hands having nowhere to sit. My lower back always feels fairly tense, but that may just be me getting used to sitting upright like this. And recommendations?

Two suggestions:

First, be gentle with yourself and use whatever posture for sitting is comfortable for the length of sit involved. Use a chair if you have to. Note that even after youíve been sitting for a while, you might still need adjustments. Iíve been sitting for years, but if I donít sit in just the right way when using a zafu, my feet will fall sound asleep.

Second (and forgive me for saying this in the Buddhism thread), try some yoga. What will really make longer sitting comfortable is hip flexibility, and the type of back strength yoga develops can also be very helpful. The traditions are very different from most strains of Buddhism, so just think of it as exercise (most classes are this way in any event)and ignore the spiritual elements, or at least be aware the perspective diverges significantly.

zhar
May 3, 2019



Yorkshire Pudding posted:

New question: I have really inflexible hips and knees, so even sitting basic cross-legged for me is hard. I basically have to be sitting against a wall or something, which tells me my posture isn’t good.

I bought a meditation bench to sit seiza style, but my issue is that I can feel a lot of stress in my shoulders and neck from my hands having nowhere to sit. My lower back always feels fairly tense, but that may just be me getting used to sitting upright like this. And recommendations?

Nothing wrong with using a wall for support, although you probably want to cushion the lower back and as said a raised rear end is probably necessary. A lot of postures ( including as the one Paramemetic describes) are designed (aside from being relaxed and stable) to optimise the subtle energy channels in the body but if you are too distracted by the posture to meditate that's not going to do you a whole lot of good. Some types of meditation require a specific posture but when I'm practicing shamatha I prefer something like a shavasana posture lying on my bed because I find it easier to relax. Unless the meditation requires something specific the best posture is the one that is most comfortable IMO, although a straight spine is important.

cerror
Feb 11, 2008

I have a bad feeling about this...


I hope you goons have a pleasant and auspicious Losar.

NikkolasKing
Apr 3, 2010





How important is getting a proper teacher in your opinion? This was a big discussion over on he Dharma Wheel forums back when I found it and posted on it for a while. Some think it's essential that you go and get personal instructions.

I'm not a Buddhist but part of my eternal not getting involved with a religion is my handicap. I'm legally blind and can't drive. The closest Buddhist locations for me are an hour away in Dallas. I won't deny I'm also just incredibly lazy and hate being around strangers which compounds the problem.

I do go out of my way to read as much as I can and learn as much as I can. But some think you need more than that.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

I still can't believe they cast Spock as me. Spock! Can you imagine?

Of course, he was missing a few things.



NikkolasKing posted:

How important is getting a proper teacher in your opinion? This was a big discussion over on he Dharma Wheel forums back when I found it and posted on it for a while. Some think it's essential that you go and get personal instructions.

I'm not a Buddhist but part of my eternal not getting involved with a religion is my handicap. I'm legally blind and can't drive. The closest Buddhist locations for me are an hour away in Dallas. I won't deny I'm also just incredibly lazy and hate being around strangers which compounds the problem.

I do go out of my way to read as much as I can and learn as much as I can. But some think you need more than that.
I think there are some vajrayana practices you should not attempt without a teacher, but otherwise you are mostly getting the benefit of "the sangha" by having one. I figure it is better to follow and study the dharma even as a "solo practicioner" than to not try to practice until some hypothetical future time, which might not come.

That said, my experience with a lot of religious places is that if you reach out, they may be able to help you get a ride with a parishoner of some kind. This may not be good for you on an ongoing basis, but it would be something to consider.

Nude Hoxha Cameo
Sep 29, 2007






NikkolasKing posted:

How important is getting a proper teacher in your opinion? This was a big discussion over on he Dharma Wheel forums back when I found it and posted on it for a while. Some think it's essential that you go and get personal instructions.

I'm not a Buddhist but part of my eternal not getting involved with a religion is my handicap. I'm legally blind and can't drive. The closest Buddhist locations for me are an hour away in Dallas. I won't deny I'm also just incredibly lazy and hate being around strangers which compounds the problem.

I do go out of my way to read as much as I can and learn as much as I can. But some think you need more than that.

I mentioned Treeleaf up above, and SFZC also has online offerings. Both worth checking out if zen is of interest. There are also excellent podcasts such as the one from ADZG.

There arenít any easy answers on whether to practice alone.

Itís easy to get off track if youíre not working with a teacher or group that can serve as a second pair of eyes on your practice. You can lose steam, or if you wind up with a strong practice it can be hard to stay grounded. And you can mistake the first station, as it were, for the final destination. In addition to which the source material is extensive and often difficult to interpret and harmonize.

But on the other hand both teachers and groups can involve very harmful dynamics. Groups have a way of having tighter rules than society at large and demanding conformity, and teachers can lose their bearings and become abusive or manipulative.

Overall Iíd say practice on your own if thatís where you are, but check in from time to time with a teacher or sangha. My personal rule of thumb is always to regard both groups and teachers as guilty until proven innocent, but having said that there are, for example, many fine teachers at SFZC.

Hiro Protagonist
Oct 25, 2010

Last of the freelance hackers and
Greatest swordfighter in the world


I was curious what people in this thread thought of Ian Stevenson's work. I've seen some people in the Buddhist community point to his work as "proof" of rebirth as a concept, and the little I've read does seem intelligent, but there are likely huge issues with it that I may not be noticing from a surface reading.

zhar
May 3, 2019



NikkolasKing posted:

How important is getting a proper teacher in your opinion? This was a big discussion over on he Dharma Wheel forums back when I found it and posted on it for a while. Some think it's essential that you go and get personal instructions.

I'm not a Buddhist but part of my eternal not getting involved with a religion is my handicap. I'm legally blind and can't drive. The closest Buddhist locations for me are an hour away in Dallas. I won't deny I'm also just incredibly lazy and hate being around strangers which compounds the problem.

I do go out of my way to read as much as I can and learn as much as I can. But some think you need more than that.

I heard an anecdote that the Dalai Lama was asked something like "Is a guru really necessary?", he thought about it and replied "No, but one can save you a lot of time" (something to that effect).

I personally don't see it as a reason not to practice in the meantime. As has been said there are plenty of podcasts and online offerings many of which are as authentic as they come as long as you do some amount of due diligence.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

I still can't believe they cast Spock as me. Spock! Can you imagine?

Of course, he was missing a few things.



Hiro Protagonist posted:

I was curious what people in this thread thought of Ian Stevenson's work. I've seen some people in the Buddhist community point to his work as "proof" of rebirth as a concept, and the little I've read does seem intelligent, but there are likely huge issues with it that I may not be noticing from a surface reading.
I'm not familiar with it... I haven't heard of a lot of strong specific cases outside of the context of the various lamas like the Dalai Lama. Param may have more to say.

I have had weird subliminal impressions of what makes most sense as 'a prior life' but I don't think rebirth generally holds that you will have a lot of like, specific memories. In functional terms you would hold echoes of the habits you held in the prior life, which is part of why it's a good idea to cultivate good ones now while you're in a human incarnation.

Achmed Jones
Oct 16, 2004









Shredded Hen

Our dog died last month, and lately I've been doing a five Buddha mandala bardo practice with my four-year-old for him. It's probably dumb to do bardo stuff for a dog but it makes us both feel better and he was a very good boy

It's my first interaction with vajrayana stuff broadly speaking, so that's been interesting what with the visualization and all.

Thirteen Orphans
Dec 2, 2012

The principles expressed in the martial arts make up the backbone of my philosophy.

Achmed Jones posted:

Our dog died last month, and lately I've been doing a five Buddha mandala bardo practice with my four-year-old for him. It's probably dumb to do bardo stuff for a dog but it makes us both feel better and he was a very good boy

It's my first interaction with vajrayana stuff broadly speaking, so that's been interesting what with the visualization and all.

Senju believes our dog, because of his merit because he was a good boy was reborn as a human. If I was Buddhist I think Iíd agree.

Paramemetic
Sep 29, 2003






Fallen Rib

NikkolasKing posted:

How important is getting a proper teacher in your opinion? This was a big discussion over on he Dharma Wheel forums back when I found it and posted on it for a while. Some think it's essential that you go and get personal instructions.

In Vajrayana the teacher is the most important thing, full stop. That's because Vajrayana is built around the tradition of you following a teacher and having that teacher be a real influence in your life who can tell you what things you're doing wrong, and who can serve as the representative of the Buddha because the Buddha's gone. You're not supposed to receive the blessings from the teacher, but from the Buddha - but you're supposed to do that by seeing the Lama's nature as inseparable from the Buddha's nature. There's a story of I think a disciple of Marpa who is with Marpa, and Marpa manifests the tutelary deity physically into the room, the whole rear end mandala, and asks the student whom they should prostrate. And the student prostrates the deity, because, you know, a wholeass mandala physically manifested - and Marpa turns it off and calls them an idiot because without the Lama you can't reach the deity.

So in Vajrayana, the answer is "extremely important." But! You can do a lot of things by having devotion to a vague notion of "the Guru" or a lineage Lama, because, well, the Lama is also inseparable in nature from the nature of your own mind. Ultimately, the Lama that you experience is that thing that your mind is seeing as the Lama, so everyone is the Lama who is kind to you, and you can totally do that if you're good as hell.

But like zhar said - is the Lama very necessary? No, every being will be enlightened eventually, but you could save a lot of time with one.

Hiro Protagonist posted:

I was curious what people in this thread thought of Ian Stevenson's work. I've seen some people in the Buddhist community point to his work as "proof" of rebirth as a concept, and the little I've read does seem intelligent, but there are likely huge issues with it that I may not be noticing from a surface reading.

lmao at the merging of topics in my life in this thread.

Okay so I'm pretty familiar with Ian Stevenson's work, mostly his work with mental telepathy and parapsychology, but also with his reincarnation stuff. The evidence is pretty substantial but I would absolutely hesitate to say it "proves" anything.

His work is scientifically robust and it seems to make some pretty strong indicators. The laboratory it originates from, Division of Perceptual Studies at UVA, is perpetually funded by an endowment but he actually did most of his work on rebirth and near death experience stuff with the UVA School of Medicine. Like, those things were being done by physicians and prominent ones at that.

However, with regards to Buddhism? We all have brain worms about wanting to prove stuff because it makes us feel good to be validated and because we're used to being told we're nuts. That's true of Buddhists just as it's true of parapsychologists and so on. But I think it's a bad habit. The proof of Buddhism isn't in whether or not we can establish with the tools of materialist scientific positivism whether or not rebirth is a thing; the proof of Buddhism is in the lives of the Buddha's followers and in whether or not we have a tangible relief of suffering if we follow those teachings.

So Tibetans and other cultural Buddhists tend to like that research because it's a neat validation, but they kinda take it as "well yeah, glad y'all are caught up." It doesn't change lives to read about some small scientific validation. For Westerners though, it holds a lot more clout because, well, we value materialist science as a method of assessing truth.

So what I have to say about Ian Stevenson's work is that I've cited his work and read a lot of it and believe him to be a good researcher and I do not believe there are overt flaws in his methodologies or that he's out to prove anything at all. I think he's an earnest scientific investigator doing earnest scientific investigation.

I think it's loving fantastic that DOPS is fully funded in perpetuity because that laboratory has consistently produced fantastic research with degrees of certainty that far exceed even medical research exactly because any time someone publishes something indicating that psi exists or that consciousness might not be a mechanical process of neurology a million peckerheads who have made their careers as "debunkers" come swarming out of the woodwork to tell everyone how it's impossible because it doesn't explain a mechanism and if you can't propose a mechanism it's not real research or whatever, so you have to have to be able to back your poo poo up hard. Stevenson's work does that.

Paramemetic
Sep 29, 2003






Fallen Rib

Thirteen Orphans posted:

Senju believes our dog, because of his merit because he was a good boy was reborn as a human. If I was Buddhist I think Iíd agree.

I've seen it said in Tibetan Buddhism that dogs are one of the better animal rebirths because they have the opportunity to gain merit, because they prioritize the happiness of their owners over their own happiness, and because they don't want the ball, they want you to have the ball, but they will go get it for you, even when you drop it across the room.

It's also said that monks that gently caress up their vows but still live lives of good merit will "pop down" for a lifetime as a dog to burn it off, and then bounce back up. This is especially true of monastery dogs, or dogs that live in Buddhist households, since they have the karma of being around the Dharma.

So, what I'm saying is, your dog was a good boy and surely achieved an auspicious birth.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

I still can't believe they cast Spock as me. Spock! Can you imagine?

Of course, he was missing a few things.



Pet dogs wouldn't have the karma of taking lives to contend with either, while wild dogs might well. (Cats are obviously another story.)

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

I still can't believe they cast Spock as me. Spock! Can you imagine?

Of course, he was missing a few things.



I was curious if folks reading this thread would be interested in some in-depth readings of sutras. I figured this would provide anchor points for people to understand a lot of Buddhist thoughts as well as introducing a range of exciting and obscure sutras.

The sutra I was thinking of doing this with is the Ksitigarbha sutra, or to give it its full Christian (har) name, "Sutra of the Fundamental Vows of the Bodhisattva Kṣitigarbha." This particular sutra was influential on me and it contains a range of exciting theological details. You can find a PDF here: http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/ksitigarbha.pdf

This text is influential in Chinese Buddhism in particular, although there is some ambiguity on whether it is authentically derived from Indian texts, due to a strong focus on filial matters. No Sanskrit versions of this text have been found; on the other hand, it is not as if filial piety did not exist in India, and the text might have become popular or been prioritized for translation due to that aspect.

Yiggy
Sep 12, 2004

"Imagination is not enough. You have to have knowledge too, and an experience of the oddity of life."


Iím interested.

NikkolasKing
Apr 3, 2010





I would be interested as well.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

I still can't believe they cast Spock as me. Spock! Can you imagine?

Of course, he was missing a few things.



I have been composing but it has been rather slow going since large parts of the text are repetitive and while this was very satisfying to me to read due to its baroque and elaborate nature, it does not distill well to a philosophical point.

However, there is a very important section which I will reproduce in key selections.

quote:

At that time, Samantabhadra Maha Bodhisattva requested Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva and said: "My meritorious One, please be kind enough to relate to devas, the dragons and all beings of the Samsara world, in the present and the future, the names of different Hells and the kinds of punishment for committing sins, so that beings in the future generation will realise the result of evil deeds and therefore will avoid evil."
Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva replied: "My compassionate One, under the supernatural powers of the Buddha and your kind support, I now give you the names of Hells and the kinds of punishment for sinners in brief
...
21. Hell of Burning Iron-Balls Where sinners are forced to swallow the Balls.
...
24. Hell of Great Anger Where sinners are made to fight against one another angrily.
Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva said again, "My compassionate One, inside the Mahachakravala, there are innumerable such Hells of Punishment. Again, there are
...
29. Hell of Fire Elephants Where sinners are chased by burning Elephants.
30. Hell of Fire Dogs Where sinners are bitten by them.
31.Hell of Fire Horses and Fire Cows Where sinners are chased or stepped on by the burning animals.
...
36. Hell of Fire Eagles Where sinners are attacked by them.
37. Hell of Fire Saws Where sinners' bodies and teeth are sawed.
It is unclear how one can achieve a rebirth as a Fire Elephant, despite the eminent desirability of such a form.

None of these Hells are like the classical Hell in Christianity. Ksitigarbha in various incarnations is able to speak with various devils and their kings, who are presented as reasonable and moral beings. The suggestion is that these areas' existence is due to the law of karma, not due to a deliberate meta-political act. I included Great Anger there because it is relatable in a way that the Hell of Fire Eagles is not. Hells also arise and decay; it is noted that some individuals' torment might extend past the term of existence for a particular hell. It does not seem beyond conception that to the Fire Elephants, this is just an ordinary world. Is our own world a Hell -- and for who?

Nessus fucked around with this message at 08:21 on Feb 29, 2020

Yorkshire Pudding
Nov 24, 2006



Currently switching my priorities to attain just enough bad karma to be reborn as a Fire Eagle.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

I still can't believe they cast Spock as me. Spock! Can you imagine?

Of course, he was missing a few things.



Yorkshire Pudding posted:

Currently switching my priorities to attain just enough bad karma to be reborn as a Fire Eagle.
I think you have to do a stint as a Fire Cow before those unlock.

Poached Eggs
Feb 29, 2020


Paramemetic posted:

So don't meditate if you have a depression unless you have a good teacher who can tell you when to stop. For Tibetan Buddhists if there is major discouragement like that we generally recommend doing purification practices and focusing on ritual-y stuff rather than doing a lot of meditation if you are prone to those kinds of things; focusing on concrete stuff and not spending so much time "in one's head."

There's some reason here but also some distortion.
Effective meditation should take the practiser away from your described "self-talk".
If taught correctly, by the appropriate healer, which in these senarios should be a psychologist as opposed to a spiritual guide, the process should effectively teach how to stop thinking and instead turn our mind to our physical state and senses.
It will start as small sessions, just simply learning to hear our bodies, use senses, one by one, in a 2 part endeavour to firstly break the cycle of neurotic and or obsessive thought, and secondly teach how to live in the present moment.

Im taking many shortcuts here to keep this short, but feel it's important to disagree constructively, in the hope that any readers suffering from anxiety and depression don't dispell forms of meditation as a option of treatment.

My personal experience was incredibly effective in helping free me from years of crippling PTSD.

I now live as a practising buddhist, though in a very simplistic way, and not dissimiliar to the way that 100's of millions in Asia practice.
A simple life, do good to others and all life daily, do not dwell on either yesterday nor tomorrow. Appreciate what you have in the present moment. (This requires some obedience and motivation to stop for 15-20 mins twice a day to meditate, and reset).
Follow cultural and ceremonial practices according to the community I am a part of.

The core principles of buddhism aren't dissimilar to most other of religions. Culture and society are what define how we live, regardless of whatever an individual might identify themselves as spiritually.

I see many pitfalls for any comfortable westerner attempting to understand:
-all life is suffering,
-suffering is created by desire,
-suffering ceases when desire ceases,
-follow the noble paths....

PE

Poached Eggs
Feb 29, 2020


Nessus posted:

I think you have to do a stint as a Fire Cow before those unlock.

This made me laugh. Mooooo.....

Nude Hoxha Cameo
Sep 29, 2007






I would like to know more about these Burning Iron Balls

Poached Eggs
Feb 29, 2020


Might have overstated when saying "do good to others and all life daily".....anything considered food will suffer.
Buddhism isnt perfect either.

Achmed Jones
Oct 16, 2004









Shredded Hen

Buddhism thread: Where sinners are forced to swallow the Balls.

NikkolasKing
Apr 3, 2010





Do any schools of Buddhism talk about an "end?" I understand the importance of beginninglessness so maybe that precludes talk of an end but I can't help but think about if the process of salvation is ever over.

Is there no point where all beings will be rescued from samsara?

In the Pure Land tradition as I nderstand it, Amida became a Buddha upon fulfilling his Vow to save all beings which basically means that we are all guaranteed salvation because otherwise he wouldn't have become Amida Buddha. So that would seem to posit there has to be some end to his task ie. at some point nobody will be trapped in samsara.

NikkolasKing fucked around with this message at 00:52 on Mar 1, 2020

Yiggy
Sep 12, 2004

"Imagination is not enough. You have to have knowledge too, and an experience of the oddity of life."


The closet you get to ďan endĒ or an eschatology of any sort, particularly as recognized by old Indian schools and later Buddhist movements, is really just the next beginning; the next Buddha, Maitreya. Youíll see certain texts describe how right before the coming of maitreya that the Buddhaís bone relics and some of his artifacts such as his alms bowl will all come together at the end right before the coming of Maitreya the prophesied next Buddha.

NikkolasKing
Apr 3, 2010





Ya know the Religionthread is kinda about just everyone who is religious chatting but it's still mostly Christians. And this thread seems more like, well, a Q&A thread rather then just shooting the poo poo.

Do you have any favorite sutras or mantras?

Is anybody here a Theravadan Buddhist and not Mahayana or Tantra?

Hearing this is what brought me back to Buddhism. I don't know if I would qualify myself yet as a Buddhist but I'm closer to it than I've been to any faith in a long, long time. Learning and regaining faith very slowly.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72luMobA_vI

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Nude Hoxha Cameo
Sep 29, 2007






For sutras, hard to pick just one, but I think if I did, it would be the Heart Sutra, in its simplicity and radical message. If we were casting the net a bit more broadly, possibly Genjokoan. Though this may be a slightly tougher question for Zen, which is often said to be a special transmission outside the scriptures (despite including and producing a huge corpus of written work).

In our corner of westernized Soto, there isnít mantra practice of the kind you may be thinking of, such as a personal mantra used during meditation as a point of focus. There can, however, be group chanting (depending on the zen center and occasion), which can include chanted mantras.

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