Discussion in 'Eastern Philosophy' started by Bowser, Feb 16, 2011.

  1. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

    Is the "awakened state" simply a realization that everything IS simply what we had always suspected? That this IS it? That there IS nothing more?

    Could it be that what we have been searching for is nothing more than a delusion, and that reality IS all there is? The present IS all that we have. The past and future are nothing more than ghosts of the mind.

    If you have any thoughts regarding "Enlightenment," please share. :shrug:
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  3. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    Yeah, sort of, I guess. The point in Buddhism doesn't seem to be to make the universe go away and transport us to a different paradaisical place, to a 'higher spiritual plane', to 'heaven' or wherever. It's more interested in changing us somehow, so that we finally perceive the real universe as it actually is. But seen that way, things might not always turn out to be as we formerly suspected at all. Some of Buddhism's philosophical ideas are very unlike our common-sense assumptions. If those ideas are true (certainly an open question) then we are apt to emerge from the process seeing things, and thinking about them, in new ways.

    So to say it more simply, we will be in the same place as when we started, but that place might appear very different to us.

    I think that Buddhist philosophy would typically agree with that.

    But Buddhist philosophers definitely aren't agreed among themselves about what reality is truly like. There are all kinds of philosophical issues in Buddhist phlosophy, such as idealism vs realism, subject-object distinctions, the explanation of universals (general terms that seem to refer to an unchanging essence) and many more.

    The nature and proper analysis of time is another disputed issue in Buddhist philosophy.

    I think that in Indian philosophical thought, a visual metaphor has always occupied a more central place than in Western philosophy. The goal and object of Indian philosophy is to see things as they truly are.

    That emphasis leads to a lower estimation of discursive reasoning in India than in the West, where philosophy essentially is discursive reasoning. In India, knowing something by reasoning about it theoretically is a lower attainment than knowing something by actually experiencing it first-hand for one's self. (And in so doing, being it, so the reasoning often goes.) This is why meditation has typically played such a central role in Indian philosophy, and why Indian philosophy has often taken more psychological and idealistic directions than Western philosophy.

    Buddhist enlightenment, from the purely experiential non-discursive point of view, can probably to be identified with nibbana itself. And I guess that we can say that cognitive conclusions about the enlightenment experience, translated back into discursive form, represent bodhi.

    Of course, in the 2500 years of Buddhist history, that's taken multiple and at times seemingly inconsistent forms. It's still an open question, and an active topic of discussion among Buddhist philosophers, to what extent the different schools of Buddhism are trying to say similar things with different emphases and terminologies, and to what extent their ideas are truly incompatible. (Suggesting that somebody might be mistaken.) But everyone pretty much agrees that nibbana, actual first-hand enjoyment of the non-discursive enlightenment experience, is the ultimate attainment for all Buddhists that will finally make all of this stuff moot.
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  5. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

    “There is no enlightenment outside of daily life."
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  7. EmptyForceOfChi Banned Banned

    That depends on what you are "searching" for, at what stage do you consider one enlightened, when they reach the level of understanding the physical or mental self?, when they reach understanding of the nature of the universe and existence?. Reaching the highest levels of focus mastery through meditations you could say is reaching enlightenment upon will and intention.

    You are seeking Immortality yes, that is what you are searching for. have you studied Nirvana and the Realms of Samsara?.

    You were dead and was brought to life, you will return to death once again and then be brought back to life once more.

  8. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

    I don't think that I'm so much searching for immortality as I am searching for a spiritual experience. Also, I'm a terrible student, so everything must be on my terms. And where do we find spirituality in Buddhism?

    Yes, I've heard that before, but I'm not certain where the logic of reincarnation comes from. The body dies. Are we to assume that something of the human being survives death? What would you point to that would support such a claim?

    I found an interesting definition for enlightment online...

    If that's enlightenment, then I've been there.
  9. Me-Ki-Gal Banned Banned

    There is an altered state . Not many reach it. When you do you will be able to communicate with out words as we know language. It is based in instinct. The language is difficult and I don't know if it can be taught. First thing to do is to do an analysis of your name and heritage. This will give you insight as to how you have been programed to think. Next is to analyze how language as it pertains to your name has morphed. Look for the lost meaning in the words . Once you do this you can start braking free of your own delusions in life . You will start to see your own shadow , don't be afraid as the truth starts to come clear . Except it and embrace what you start to see. I know it is hard for you will think it has no value because the shadow looks like you and people have a tendency to reject things that mimic them selves . Try reading a book by an author that has your initials. Like if you are a H.G. read a book by someone that has those same initials . The whole idea is to climb the ladder of self until you brake free of self. Then you will see things in a more objective way . Only then will you start to see the parallel language that directs peoples lives though instinct. Your dream state will start to becoming your conscience state. They will connect together where as life will be full of more color , food will taste better, Every move made by anything will seem to have a specific meaning. The completeness of nature will blow your friggen mind. Touch dirt, smell dirt , be the dirt
  10. Me-Ki-Gal Banned Banned

    For you maybe. For Me not so. I am a planner and schemer so I have to plan for our future events out side of the here and now. See the blue apple , grab the blue apple , eat the blue apple , but before I did all that I wanted a blue apple . That want for the blue apple was outside my daily life. How do I say it more clear. You want to learn guitar . This is out side of your daily life. Your enlightenment is the feelings you want to play guitar. Now you have desire to play the guitar. This is nothing more than a dream at this state, but it is still a light bulb moment in development of your life. Now it is true you have to practice in your daily life no doubt. Years of practice down the road and you might be able to play guitar , but that hope of believing you will be able to play guitar lives in a future not realized and is outside of your daily life. If you give up hope in playing the guitar then that future is not realized and you certainly won't be the guitar player. So hope is for the future outcome of your desire . we will live in the here and now as we practice and yet we will see our selves being a guitar player in the future as we learn to play. Visualizing is what it is called. Winning Athletes depend on this tool
  11. Wisdom_Seeker Speaker of my truth Valued Senior Member

    Hit it right on the spot. It is not that we should not “plan ahead”, but somehow we have lost the ability to relax in the present moment, without the mind dwelling on the past or future.
    For example: you hear the sound of a motorcycle, the mind triggers the process according to memory, and visualizes the motorcycle (this is dwelling in the ghost of the past); then you start thinking about having a motorcycle in the future (the mind switches to future). But the mind is never in the present moment. One should be able to see the present as it really is, not according to past experiences.
    And if you think about it, when you visualize the future you are doing nothing more than maintaining a continuum of past memory. By doing this, you are pre-conditioning yourself not to experience anything new.

    According to the theory of reincarnation, we are bound by the law of karma (action-reaction). Here the body-mind is nothing but an illusion created by our true self, in order to satisfy our own unconscious desires; these desires cannot be quenched in a bodiless form. Repression is a denial of these desires, becoming the greatest hindrance of self-knowledge.
    As long as one is bound to his objects of desire, one will continue reincarnating in many forms; the process of “going in” and understanding your own desires (man, know thyself) was called by Buddha “srotapatti” meaning “he who has entered the stream”. And as we know every stream leads to the ocean. But a seeker who achieves the state of “srotapatti” has still a long way to reach to the ocean.
    One who reaches this ocean, is one who realizes his true nature (objectless desire; destroying hatred, greed and delusion), ergo no longer bound by his mind, he has become the master of the mind. This state is called the state of an arhat , or bodhisattva (still not a Buddha). Arhats are in the same experience and understanding of reality as bodhisattvas; the difference is that the arhat remains silent about it (unable to teach others), and the bodhisattvas create a conscious desire to help others, in order to remain in the physical world; these people become the well-known masters of all religions.
    The bodhisattva is said to reincarnate a few times more (conscious reincarnation); this guys are said to reincarnate in the bodies they consciously choose. Not like unconscious reincarnation, on which the being chooses the parents by sexual attraction. But according to certain laws of the physical universe, after all his past Karma has been dissolved, the bodhisattva is bound to become a Buddha, and when this happens he will only be able to reincarnate 1 last life.
    The fathers of mainstream religions, like Jesus, Gautam, Krishna and Zarathustra are reported to have said that they will be coming back (conscious reincarnation) in the time and place of their choosing just 1 more time.

    It is funny, because I have noticed when I try to explain this to people, there is a common reaction in the form of a question: “Why wouldn’t I want to reincarnate again?”. This statement proves that the person who formulated the question still has unconscious desires to quench and therefore bound to reincarnate again after death.

    Enlightenment is the state of arhats and bodhisattvas. Full-Enlightenment is the state of a Buddha (the Alpha and Omega of all beings).
  12. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

    I don't see how you can escape the mental process. It's a requirement in order to experiencing life.

    Eternal life is the dream of many. Why wouldn't they be pleased to hear that they will be reincarnated?

    That still doesn't give us a good insight into the state.

    Thanks for your thoughts. I had forgotten about this thread and thought it was dead until I gave it a look recently.
  13. Wisdom_Seeker Speaker of my truth Valued Senior Member

    I didn’t mean “escape” the mental process like for good; I mean not let the mental process disturb you and take control of your life. Depression, stress, anxiety, and all kinds of mental disorders derive from an “out of control” mental process. We have reached to a point where the mental process controls our lives and it isn’t supposed to be this way.
    The beginning is to start observing the mental process, by the mere awareness the train of thought ceases.
    The goal is to use the mental process as it is required, when it is required. Like you would drive a car, you wouldn’t let the car drive you.

    That’s what I’m saying, they ask:
    . But to want to live forever, or the desire to live again because of worldly desires, is the very sign of unconsciousness; and this mental state means a new reincarnation is inevitable.

    “It is said that when Buddha was first Enlightened he was asked,
    “Are you a God?”
    “No,” he replied.
    “Are you a saint?”
    “Then what are you?”

    And he answered, “I am awake.” “

    We are all buddhas, sleeping buddhas. But as to the insight of the state of enlightenment, I cannot say. I can only assert “via negativa”, I know the unconsciousness of the mind, we all do, this is the state of sleepiness of being.

    NP, it is a topic of interest for me

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  14. scheherazade Northern Horse Whisperer Valued Senior Member

    My question may seem out of place on this thread, yet I request your indulgence in the ponder.

    Do you see the internet and the many devices by which people are in constant communication with others, or with the distractions of their choice, as an avenue or an obstacle to 'enlightenment?'

    On the one hand, these tools enable each individual to create their own 'virtual realities' in which they may assume and act out any role they please.

    Does this enhance or detract from the individual's experience of 'reality' and their ability to explore the path of enlightenment?
  15. Wisdom_Seeker Speaker of my truth Valued Senior Member

    Your questions are most sincere, and I don’t think they are out of place.

    We do tend to avoid looking at ourselves by searching for experiences that the internet, TV, even books can give. But nonetheless, if you are perceptive, there is a point in life when you see the same repetitions in behavior of people and in yourself that throws you inevitably unto meditation; with the motivation to transcend this conditioned robot-like quality of being.
    The Internet is just a palpable manifestation of the collective consciousness, as well as the collective unconsciousness; it is a manifestation of our “togetherness”. I don’t see those things as something good or bad, it can help a lot, and/or it can hinder a lot; it depends on each one. But one thing is for sure, and it is that information is available for everyone that in past epochs would have been almost impossible to come across.
    The thing is, it is paradoxical, it is a source of universal knowledge, and this knowledge can be beneficial or a hindrance; it depends on your use of it. If you are too much for knowledge, it will hinder; but knowledge applied with intelligence and love can be one of the greatest benefits towards being by your own light and understanding.
    For me: the more you know, the more you understand that you really don’t know about the most important things. And that is good.

    Yes, totally, it can be a support for your ego, when your ego is not strong enough to deal with the real society (person to person communion); then it can turn to support in virtual identities. For example: you would like to think and convey that you are wise, but your body language may not fool others perceptive enough to read these things. You can hide this in a virtual environment so nobody will know your true essence.
    But this is not bad, we can learn from our mistakes; in Nietzsche’s words: If a tree wants to reach to the sky, its roots have to go to the very hell.

    It detracts you from reality, but this very fact can teach you the importance of being in reality. It is like touching fire can teach us why not to touch fire directly.
    The path of enlightenment is different for every person, so different that we cannot judge if someone is following his path by committing what we would think is something bad. The main and most important aspect in this area is not to judge others, and if we do because of the inertia of habit, then we should really ask ourselves why we are judging that specific action. It may well be your own repression of something that is part of your own form of being.
    The very judgmental attitude towards others is a hindrance to your growth, because you will judge yourself with the same yoke.

    "You see the sliver in your friend's eye, but you don't see the timber in your own eye. When you take the timber out of your own eye, then you will see well enough to remove the sliver from your friend's eye”
  16. Kennyc Registered Senior Member

    The gateless gate.

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