Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by silverswhispers on Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:41 am

Davelaw wrote:
tmarie64 wrote:Gilly...good terms "blind" and "real".
Blind faith is something I think those in the "Creation is IT and evolution doesn't exist" crowd have.
Real faith is what the people who think like me believe... "Yes, I believe God exists. I ALSO believe evolution is real. I SEE where evolution has occurred."

I just can't understand how people DON'T see the logic of evolution. Look at us! We're all colors, shapes and sizes. Middle eastern desert dwellers are darker than Europeans, Africans are much darker than Arabs. That is proof that humans evolved. Chimpanzee DNA is something like 97-99% identical to human. How can someone NOT believe we might be evolved from apes?

Real faith (for lack of a better term) involves faith that God has made us smart enough to figure out our world. NOW if he'd just make us smart enough to save it.

It is evidence we evolved- NOT proof

Evidence is Proof... That is exactly what Evidence is.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by silverswhispers on Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:47 am

ZenYen wrote:
Davelaw wrote:
tmarie64 wrote:Gilly...good terms "blind" and "real".
Blind faith is something I think those in the "Creation is IT and evolution doesn't exist" crowd have.
Real faith is what the people who think like me believe... "Yes, I believe God exists. I ALSO believe evolution is real. I SEE where evolution has occurred."

I just can't understand how people DON'T see the logic of evolution. Look at us! We're all colors, shapes and sizes. Middle eastern desert dwellers are darker than Europeans, Africans are much darker than Arabs. That is proof that humans evolved. Chimpanzee DNA is something like 97-99% identical to human. How can someone NOT believe we might be evolved from apes?

Real faith (for lack of a better term) involves faith that God has made us smart enough to figure out our world. NOW if he'd just make us smart enough to save it.

It is evidence we evolved- NOT proof

Yes, it is merely evidence, not proof. You have to add it in with all the other evidence -- which is abundant -- and then you have something approaching proof. Of course, in science, you always leave room for new evidence or data to enhance understanding, and if evidence ever shows evolution didn't happen, then scientists will abandon the theory and adopt one in accordance with the evidence.

There is literal mountain of evidence that supports evolution and the typical counter argument tends to ignore all of this evidence (proof) which is usually rooted in a deep misunderstanding of the concepts. It is provable, repeatable and in nearly every step detailed... yet this is considered by some to not be enough proof yet they embrace other mystical explanations that have zero, or nearly zero, evidence that is based purely upon faith. No matter how passionate some one may be about there beliefs it doesn't make it many more true and belief alone is far from proof.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by DeavonReye on Tue Mar 08, 2011 12:00 pm

ZenYen wrote:Well stated. One of the things I find appealing about zen is that it is very much an experiential path. I put great stock in experience. Good luck on your road, DeavonReye.

Thank you, ZenYen! Smile
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by silverswhispers on Tue Mar 08, 2011 12:14 pm

John T Mainer wrote:
ZenYen wrote:
Davelaw wrote:
tmarie64 wrote:Gilly...good terms "blind" and "real".
Blind faith is something I think those in the "Creation is IT and evolution doesn't exist" crowd have.
Real faith is what the people who think like me believe... "Yes, I believe God exists. I ALSO believe evolution is real. I SEE where evolution has occurred."

I just can't understand how people DON'T see the logic of evolution. Look at us! We're all colors, shapes and sizes. Middle eastern desert dwellers are darker than Europeans, Africans are much darker than Arabs. That is proof that humans evolved. Chimpanzee DNA is something like 97-99% identical to human. How can someone NOT believe we might be evolved from apes?

Real faith (for lack of a better term) involves faith that God has made us smart enough to figure out our world. NOW if he'd just make us smart enough to save it.

It is evidence we evolved- NOT proof

Yes, it is merely evidence, not proof. You have to add it in with all the other evidence -- which is abundant -- and then you have something approaching proof. Of course, in science, you always leave room for new evidence or data to enhance understanding, and if evidence ever shows evolution didn't happen, then scientists will abandon the theory and adopt one in accordance with the evidence.

We actually abandonned Darwin pretty early. He postulated gradual constant change adapting to the environment, suggesting a directionality to evolution and a drive to improve. Intellectualy satisfying, but demonstrably false. Evolution isn't about better, its about worst. Worst dies, everything else passes on. Worst is a today thing; what worked yesterday will not necessarily hold for tomorrow, and only those options that survived today will be available for future challenges. Rather than slow stately progress, each disaster that causes a catastrophic die off will shift the surviving population to a new mix of mutations and establish a new species standard, or divide the species along multiple successful strategems. It is not a stately flow, but a drunken lurch through time. Inelegant, and utterly unfocused. It's shotgun approach to development is like brute force hacking; it will find a right answer eventually, as long as it has time for almost infinite attempts. Some species just don't have time enough to find a right answer.

Evidence is what is submitted in a court case that proves something true or not true and with evolution it would be considered an orgy of evidence since the evidence is overwhelming.

Evolution is not focused upon that the worst dies but rather that the best suited to survive in a given environment will have an edge down the chain of descendants. If a creature has a mild adaptation that gives them a evolutionary advantage and thus it can reproduce more effectively over time, sometimes vast amounts of time, that advantage will allow them to survive while the other creature with less of a adaptation may die out. It may die out as a easier target of predators, not able to reproduce as quickly to adapt the to pressure of predator adaptations or some environmental adaptation. It is not at all about the worst dies, nor the best wins but rather the more well adapted has an advantage that over time gives them a competitive advantage.

While the process may not been elegant does not mean by any stretch that it is not valid or true. There are questions about various details which is normal for anything related to science and if a better explanation comes science will adapt to it but the fact that creatures evolve is not debated in the scientific community by any rational scientist. How this is done has been studied and much of the details are filling in very quickly and the 'scientific theory' is more solid then ever.

If you choose to not look at the evidence or be able to understand what the evidence presents it may not ever be proof enough for you but that doesn't change the facts and while we are all entitled to our own opinion I disagree that we are entitled to our own facts.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by silverswhispers on Tue Mar 08, 2011 12:21 pm

ZenYen wrote:
DeavonReye wrote:I agree with what ZenYen stated about faith. I was in the christian faith for many years. I had never experienced a personal encounter, . . . . so in reality, my "faith" was a "blind faith". A person who actually DOES have an experience isn't the same. They may have misunderstood the experience as something it actually wasn't, but if they believe it to be what they claim it to be, . . . that would be a "misguided faith". If they had an exprience and didn't misunderstand what was happening, then their experience would constitute an actual faith in what they DID experience. . . . . . . . . Now, in my opinion, . . . if someone experiences a direct, undoubtable interaction with gods, and on a normal basis, . . . I can't call that "faith", but knowledge. That is where I would like to be. I am interested in finding out the TRUTH [even if it is just for me]. My "christian faith" was empty because it had no weight of experience. If that is all I have for the rest of my life, then I will continue to call myself agnostic.

Well stated. One of the things I find appealing about zen is that it is very much an experiential path. I put great stock in experience. Good luck on your road, DeavonReye.

One thing I love about Buddhism, particularly Zen, as well is that as you've noted that it is a experimental path and not a path based upon faith. There is a vast difference between knowledge of something and the empowerment that actually knowing can offer you. The danger is that if any experience is filtered through the ego then even an experience could be distorted and a distraction upon your path.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:19 pm

silverswhispers wrote:
Very fair question and on this link is exactly how I define faith and what I mean.
Silverswhispers Definition of Faith

Ok, so in the understanding that you are operating under, one has faith in something that they don't have proof in.

If I might be so bold, the understanding that most people here are operating under is that faith is not something that you can prove to someone else.

Do you see the difference?

all
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:38 pm

silverswhispers wrote:


Evidence is Proof... That is exactly what Evidence is.
NOT IN LAW OR SCIENCE


Proof is a conclusion
evidences are merely building blocks that may or may not lead to a conclusion
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:41 pm

allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:
silverswhispers wrote:
Very fair question and on this link is exactly how I define faith and what I mean.
Silverswhispers Definition of Faith

Ok, so in the understanding that you are operating under, one has faith in something that they don't have proof in.

If I might be so bold, the understanding that most people here are operating under is that faith is not something that you can prove to someone else.

Do you see the difference?

all

or in Bible terms, faith is invisible evidence-that which makes sense to you but can't be demonstrated to anyone else
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:47 pm

Can't post knee jerk reaction to "bible".......

aaaghhhhhhh
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:53 pm

silverswhispers wrote:

One thing I love about Buddhism, particularly Zen, as well is that as you've noted that it is a experimental path and not a path based upon faith. There is a vast difference between knowledge of something and the empowerment that actually knowing can offer you. The danger is that if any experience is filtered through the ego then even an experience could be distorted and a distraction upon your path.

thats true as to practice; if you are comfortable with ignoring the whole reincarnation aspect which is taken on faith
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:54 pm

allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:Can't post knee jerk reaction to "bible".......

aaaghhhhhhh

you could? betcha my skin is thicker than yours
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:58 pm

Davelaw wrote:
allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:Can't post knee jerk reaction to "bible".......

aaaghhhhhhh

you could? betcha my skin is thicker than yours

At a certain point can't we just both say that our skin is thick enough? When I feel the need, there are always sites I can go to where I can beat up on Christians, I don't need to cause collateral damage here.

all
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:04 pm

allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:
Davelaw wrote:
allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:Can't post knee jerk reaction to "bible".......

aaaghhhhhhh

you could? betcha my skin is thicker than yours

At a certain point can't we just both say that our skin is thick enough? When I feel the need, there are always sites I can go to where I can beat up on Christians, I don't need to cause collateral damage here.

all

fair enough
besides my dyslexic reading of the 2nd Amendment always causes me to chuckle in your presence (in a Poul Anderson/ Gordy Dickson sort of way)
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:10 pm

The right to arm and keep bears?

Very Happy
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:13 pm

allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:The right to arm and keep bears?

Very Happy

'Zactly
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by ZenYen on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:30 pm

Davelaw wrote:
silverswhispers wrote:

One thing I love about Buddhism, particularly Zen, as well is that as you've noted that it is a experimental path and not a path based upon faith. There is a vast difference between knowledge of something and the empowerment that actually knowing can offer you. The danger is that if any experience is filtered through the ego then even an experience could be distorted and a distraction upon your path.

thats true as to practice; if you are comfortable with ignoring the whole reincarnation aspect which is taken on faith

1) Not all Buddhists believe in a literal reincarnation. For instance, I don't. I don't ignore it, but see it as mythological shorthand for the law of karma, a.k.a. cause and effect.

2) I suppose it's possible that someone who believes in literal reincarnation does so because of some direct experience (memory of past life? meeting the reincarnation of someone they knew long ago? In either case, you'd have belief based on subjective evidence and not merely faith.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:49 pm

There is certainly faith in Buddhism...

There is faith the Buddha was who it's claimed he is... there is faith that he attained/rediscovered true and real enlightenment.

There is faith that the afterlife is as it's claimed to be...

There is faith in the four stages of enlightenment.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_stages_of_enlightenment

These are in the end experiential... that is to say, one can become a Sotapanna and later a Sakridāgāmi and experience that firsthand but there's faith we can get there to begin with.

There is faith that once I'm a Sotapanna, I "will be safe from falling into the states of misery (they will not be born as an animal, ghost, or hell being). Their lust, hatred and delusion will not be strong enough to cause rebirth in the lower realms. A Sotāpanna will have to be reborn at most only seven more times in the human or heavenly worlds before attaining nibbana." (Bhikkhu Bodhi)

There is faith the Sanga will guide us in the right direction.

All so-called faiths contain faith... to various degrees... faith is not an inherently evil thing (no matter what those atheists tell me, I say!)... but it can be used with evil intent to be malicious toward the gullible.

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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:53 pm

ZenYen wrote:
Davelaw wrote:
silverswhispers wrote:

One thing I love about Buddhism, particularly Zen, as well is that as you've noted that it is a experimental path and not a path based upon faith. There is a vast difference between knowledge of something and the empowerment that actually knowing can offer you. The danger is that if any experience is filtered through the ego then even an experience could be distorted and a distraction upon your path.

thats true as to practice; if you are comfortable with ignoring the whole reincarnation aspect which is taken on faith

1) Not all Buddhists believe in a literal reincarnation. For instance, I don't. I don't ignore it, but see it as mythological shorthand for the law of karma, a.k.a. cause and effect.

2) I suppose it's possible that someone who believes in literal reincarnation does so because of some direct experience (memory of past life? meeting the reincarnation of someone they knew long ago? In either case, you'd have belief based on subjective evidence and not merely faith.

1. understood-but can you really claim that its the same Buddhism promulgated by Gautama? after all the samsara, we need to escape is the cycle of rebirth
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by ZenYen on Tue Mar 08, 2011 3:19 pm

Davelaw wrote:
ZenYen wrote:
Davelaw wrote:
silverswhispers wrote:

One thing I love about Buddhism, particularly Zen, as well is that as you've noted that it is a experimental path and not a path based upon faith. There is a vast difference between knowledge of something and the empowerment that actually knowing can offer you. The danger is that if any experience is filtered through the ego then even an experience could be distorted and a distraction upon your path.

thats true as to practice; if you are comfortable with ignoring the whole reincarnation aspect which is taken on faith

1) Not all Buddhists believe in a literal reincarnation. For instance, I don't. I don't ignore it, but see it as mythological shorthand for the law of karma, a.k.a. cause and effect.

2) I suppose it's possible that someone who believes in literal reincarnation does so because of some direct experience (memory of past life? meeting the reincarnation of someone they knew long ago? In either case, you'd have belief based on subjective evidence and not merely faith.

1. understood-but can you really claim that its the same Buddhism promulgated by Gautama? after all the samsara, we need to escape is the cycle of rebirth

I claim only that this is the teaching of the Buddha as I (and others in my zen tradition) understand it.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by ZenYen on Tue Mar 08, 2011 3:25 pm

Davelaw wrote:
ZenYen wrote:
Davelaw wrote:
silverswhispers wrote:

One thing I love about Buddhism, particularly Zen, as well is that as you've noted that it is a experimental path and not a path based upon faith. There is a vast difference between knowledge of something and the empowerment that actually knowing can offer you. The danger is that if any experience is filtered through the ego then even an experience could be distorted and a distraction upon your path.

thats true as to practice; if you are comfortable with ignoring the whole reincarnation aspect which is taken on faith

1) Not all Buddhists believe in a literal reincarnation. For instance, I don't. I don't ignore it, but see it as mythological shorthand for the law of karma, a.k.a. cause and effect.

2) I suppose it's possible that someone who believes in literal reincarnation does so because of some direct experience (memory of past life? meeting the reincarnation of someone they knew long ago? In either case, you'd have belief based on subjective evidence and not merely faith.

1. understood-but can you really claim that its the same Buddhism promulgated by Gautama? after all the samsara, we need to escape is the cycle of rebirth

I also should add that my adherence to the Buddhist path is not based on an argument from authority; i.e., I don't do it just because the Buddha said to do it. I do it because practice has provided experience and evidence that it works for me. The mythological aspects, recognized as such, can be effective shorthand, and I can see how such shorthand might be valuable in a pre-literate society with no books and no readers.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by Davelaw on Tue Mar 08, 2011 4:10 pm

ZenYen wrote:

I also should add that my adherence to the Buddhist path is not based on an argument from authority; i.e., I don't do it just because the Buddha said to do it. I do it because practice has provided experience and evidence that it works for me. The mythological aspects, recognized as such, can be effective shorthand, and I can see how such shorthand might be valuable in a pre-literate society with no books and no readers.

Are we even speaking the same language at this point? The Vedic world Gautama was born into was NOT preliterate-Sanskrit is one of the world's oldest languages and had plenty of readers
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by ZenYen on Tue Mar 08, 2011 4:15 pm

Davelaw wrote:
ZenYen wrote:

I also should add that my adherence to the Buddhist path is not based on an argument from authority; i.e., I don't do it just because the Buddha said to do it. I do it because practice has provided experience and evidence that it works for me. The mythological aspects, recognized as such, can be effective shorthand, and I can see how such shorthand might be valuable in a pre-literate society with no books and no readers.

Are we even speaking the same language at this point? The Vedic world Gautama was born into was NOT preliterate-Sanskrit is one of the world's oldest languages and had plenty of readers

Yes, there were a lot of readers. But the Buddha was trying to reach non-readers, too, and there were a lot of them. Pre-literate was the wrong word on my part; largely illiterate would have been better.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by silverswhispers on Tue Mar 08, 2011 4:44 pm

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:There is certainly faith in Buddhism...

There is faith the Buddha was who it's claimed he is... there is faith that he attained/rediscovered true and real enlightenment.

There is faith that the afterlife is as it's claimed to be...

There is faith in the four stages of enlightenment.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_stages_of_enlightenment

These are in the end experiential... that is to say, one can become a Sotapanna and later a Sakridāgāmi and experience that firsthand but there's faith we can get there to begin with.

There is faith that once I'm a Sotapanna, I "will be safe from falling into the states of misery (they will not be born as an animal, ghost, or hell being). Their lust, hatred and delusion will not be strong enough to cause rebirth in the lower realms. A Sotāpanna will have to be reborn at most only seven more times in the human or heavenly worlds before attaining nibbana." (Bhikkhu Bodhi)

There is faith the Sanga will guide us in the right direction.

All so-called faiths contain faith... to various degrees... faith is not an inherently evil thing (no matter what those atheists tell me, I say!)... but it can be used with evil intent to be malicious toward the gullible.

From what I've learned so far there is a core philosophy with Buddhism that has adapted itself to reflect the various cultures it has grown with over the years. (Much like denominations within Christianity) With this I've been trying to find what version I harmonize with the best and so far Zen seems to be that choice as it mostly strips down most of the cultural baggage and focuses on the direct experience and I favor that.

I believe you are more drawn to Theraveda Buddhism... why might I ask do you connect with that the best?
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by silverswhispers on Tue Mar 08, 2011 4:46 pm

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:There is certainly faith in Buddhism...

There is faith the Buddha was who it's claimed he is... there is faith that he attained/rediscovered true and real enlightenment.

There is faith that the afterlife is as it's claimed to be...

There is faith in the four stages of enlightenment.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_stages_of_enlightenment

These are in the end experiential... that is to say, one can become a Sotapanna and later a Sakridāgāmi and experience that firsthand but there's faith we can get there to begin with.

There is faith that once I'm a Sotapanna, I "will be safe from falling into the states of misery (they will not be born as an animal, ghost, or hell being). Their lust, hatred and delusion will not be strong enough to cause rebirth in the lower realms. A Sotāpanna will have to be reborn at most only seven more times in the human or heavenly worlds before attaining nibbana." (Bhikkhu Bodhi)

There is faith the Sanga will guide us in the right direction.

All so-called faiths contain faith... to various degrees... faith is not an inherently evil thing (no matter what those atheists tell me, I say!)... but it can be used with evil intent to be malicious toward the gullible.

From what I've learned so far there is a core philosophy with Buddhism that has adapted itself to reflect the various cultures it has grown with over the years. (Much like denominations within Christianity) With this I've been trying to find what version I harmonize with the best and so far Zen seems to be that choice as it mostly strips down most of the cultural baggage and focuses on the direct experience and I favor that.

I believe you are more drawn to Theraveda Buddhism... why might I ask do you connect with that the best?

I know some sects believe in reincarnation, others do not, some believe in enlightenment and others do not. It seems that there is version for whomever you are and where ever you are and I actually like this flexibility but having the discernment of what is useful and what is cultural baggage can be challenging. In the end I would love to find a teacher I could properly connect with but that has proven to be more challenging then I had presumed it would be.
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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

Post by ZenYen on Tue Mar 08, 2011 5:30 pm

silverswhispers wrote:
TigersEyeDowsing wrote:There is certainly faith in Buddhism...

There is faith the Buddha was who it's claimed he is... there is faith that he attained/rediscovered true and real enlightenment.

There is faith that the afterlife is as it's claimed to be...

There is faith in the four stages of enlightenment.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_stages_of_enlightenment

These are in the end experiential... that is to say, one can become a Sotapanna and later a Sakridāgāmi and experience that firsthand but there's faith we can get there to begin with.

There is faith that once I'm a Sotapanna, I "will be safe from falling into the states of misery (they will not be born as an animal, ghost, or hell being). Their lust, hatred and delusion will not be strong enough to cause rebirth in the lower realms. A Sotāpanna will have to be reborn at most only seven more times in the human or heavenly worlds before attaining nibbana." (Bhikkhu Bodhi)

There is faith the Sanga will guide us in the right direction.

All so-called faiths contain faith... to various degrees... faith is not an inherently evil thing (no matter what those atheists tell me, I say!)... but it can be used with evil intent to be malicious toward the gullible.

From what I've learned so far there is a core philosophy with Buddhism that has adapted itself to reflect the various cultures it has grown with over the years. (Much like denominations within Christianity) With this I've been trying to find what version I harmonize with the best and so far Zen seems to be that choice as it mostly strips down most of the cultural baggage and focuses on the direct experience and I favor that.

I believe you are more drawn to Theraveda Buddhism... why might I ask do you connect with that the best?

SW: Yes, Buddhism has adapted quite a bit along cultural lines as it spread. I think zen is sort of doing a similar thing now, adapting itself to Western culture. I recommend a book by Stephen Batchelor called "Buddhism Beyond Belief." You may find it interesting, based on what you've posted here so far.
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ZenYen

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Re: Personal attacks by christians, when you don't believe?

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