A wise man said......

Discussion in 'Eastern Philosophy' started by Light Travelling, Jun 9, 2005.

  1. Light Travelling It's a girl O lord in a flatbed Ford Registered Senior Member

    "The path to enlightenment is lonely and seldom trod."

    Does this mean that if we find many people in agreement with us (or us with them) and much comradeship, it is a sign we are on the wrong path?
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  3. ecclesiastes Registered Senior Member

    not really,but even if there arent too many people agreeing with us we could still be on the right path

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  5. sparkle born to be free Registered Senior Member

    To me the quote means something different: that there are no tracks (like you are supposed to see with paths that are travelled frequently) and therefore you cannot know you ARE on the right path unless you get there.
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  7. Sushupti Saver of Babies Registered Senior Member

    alternatively; It could say that, I'll use an example as I can't think of the words to explain otherwise; Many people might be Buddhists, but few of them are truly 'getting it,' and using it properly.
  8. DarkEyedBeauty Pirate. Registered Senior Member

    I think you're looking at it the wrong way. It's not practical advice, it's not saying...look around, are there people like you? Then you're wrong.

    It's really just saying that enlightenment isn't easy. You will lose friends over it, you won't have allies in it, and don't look for someone to help you out, it's an individual affair. Also, many people do not embark upon such a journey.
  9. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

    No one else can make you happy, you must find your happiness inside yourself, not in others.
  10. spidergoat pubic diorama Valued Senior Member

    You may have agreement and comradeship with many people, all of whom follow a lonely path, since such fellowship is mostly not the path, just a rest stop. The exception being the enlightening exchanges that provide a short cut, such as suggesting that there is no path. Perhaps some people are attracted to a point of view just for the feeling of identification with others, and the actual path never gets trodden.
  11. fadeaway humper that way lies madness Registered Senior Member

    Alternatively, it may just mean that the wise man in question was slightly drunk.
  12. Light Travelling It's a girl O lord in a flatbed Ford Registered Senior Member

    I think It refers to spiritual learning and realisation being a purley internal thing that can often never be properly expressed in words. This is why it is lonely. And seldom trod because the majority of people in the world still look to the outer forms of religion and philosophy to find answers rather than looking within.

    A crude analogy that comes to mind (spurned by the above) is this;

    A person who has never been drunk before may talk to a dozen people about the experience, they may read a hundred books on the subject but they still wont 'know' what it is like to be drunk.
    After becoming drunk they will then understand the experience and can share it with others who have been drunk - but they will then be equally unable to fully comunicate the experience with someone else who has not been drunk.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2005
  13. ellion Magician & Exorcist (93) Registered Senior Member

    it might not have a fixed meaning as such. then each person could read it and think yes this is what it means [as demonstrated above] and everone would be right (on the path) even those who where wrong(not on the path)
  14. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    possibly he was referring to the fact that as part of the path one has to reliquish all preconceptions about what people normally value. He has to open his mind to concepts that others would find impossible to even consider and are repelled by the alienation that ditching commonly held beliefs leads to.
    It is lonely because of this alienation and also because it is only a path he alone can tread.
  15. Izabel Registered Member


    The Road Not Taken

    Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
    And sorry I could not travel both
    And be one traveler, long I stood
    And looked down one as far as I could
    To where it bent in the undergrowth;

    Then took the other, just as fair,
    And having perhaps the better claim
    Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
    Though as for that the passing there
    Had worn them really about the same,

    And both that morning equally lay
    In leaves no step had trodden black.
    Oh, I marked the first for another day!
    Yet knowing how way leads on to way
    I doubted if I should ever come back.

    I shall be telling this with a sigh
    Somewhere ages and ages hence:
    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
    I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference.

    Robert Frost
  16. Dilbert Registered Senior Member

    To me it means that there are some, very few, that can to be considered geniuses. These people, perhaps it have existed a handful of them, walk this earth like humans but they are actually divine, they can walk the path of enlightenment and contribute so much to this world, the prize they have to pay is small I think, they are asocial, narcissistic, and many other things. One true genius every 100 years or so id say, sometimes longer spans, sometime lesser.
  17. Rajagopals Registered Senior Member

    It's a very good question that lead to the funny note below.

    Before you take birth you know you are not alone and your body, soul and everything else suck the life blood out of your mother. In a similar fashion we all suck the truth till we get in to the path of enlightenment, but some were in the time we would have taken birth and have become alone (or atleast start assuming so!). Like life even when we assume we are alone, relation that are established by birth never disappear. Even if we assume we are alone, these relations do exists. Like that, even if we assume we are alone in the path to enlightenment, we tend to forget our birth and real existence of relation to all that made us take birth (advice by Guru, friend, family, lover,book, etc) and let loose.

    Do you think you can ever be lonely to enlightenment.

    Trod - its nothing but belief that gives you that assurance (the birth) to go on and on and on till your soul gets what you deserve.

    Good that I typed it here, now I also have some clarity on these which were also questions in front of me

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  18. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member


    "Wisdom is knowing when you can't be wise."
    Muhammad Ali
  19. VitalOne Banned Banned

    I think this means that the only person that truly helps you attain enlightenment is yourself.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2005
  20. devils_reject Registered Senior Member

    I second that, you can't fake it all the time
  21. EmptyForceOfChi Banned Banned

    right and wrong is opinion and opinion is choice of thought is it wrong to steal to feed your starving family yes indeed it is (in police eyes) is it right to kill some1 because he disshonored your mother yes it is

    weed effects you if you admit it or not
  22. VossistArts 3MTA3 Registered Senior Member

    I suppose you can find truth in the statement, at least the first part. I dont think its a great saying though. The path to enlightenment is connected to everything you experience and probably lots of others thing you dont experience directly. Yeah, only you can find your enlightenment, but you certianly dont do it alone. Lonely is a state of mind. I wonder how much time a more enlightened person spends dwelling in that state. Im not very enlightened, I spend a lot of time alone, and Im rarely feeling lonely. shrugs. That its seldom trod? Maybe if that is trying to suggest that only few people arrive at some sort of complete enlightenment. Otherwise its absolutely untrue. Everyone trods that path whether theyre conscious and deliberate about it or not.

  23. Arcane Guest

    A form of Chan(Zen) Buddhism says that there is no one way to enlightenment(heaven, paradise), everyone must find their 0wn.


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