Sunday School 27th December 2020.
January 2, 2021 at 6:04 pm #35778
According to this article, people who are “good” have more successful lives.
sometimes misdeeds end up smackkng wrongdoers in the face is true, but that’s a trivial truth
It may or may not be a trivial truth, but the real-life results are not trivial. If we screw up, disaster may ensue.January 2, 2021 at 6:06 pm #35779
Simon, an infinite number of monkeys sitting at word processors for as long as it takes will someday produce an exact copy of the Dammapada, and a broken clock gives correct time twice a day. The Grand Wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan can occasionally say something just and right, and still the organization is a bunion on the butt of America.
Any religion can generate the occasional inspirational or true statement, but the religion can still be false and, all told, harmful. And the harm can be simply be that of making people comfortable with religious bullshit.January 2, 2021 at 6:30 pm #35780
It may or may not be a trivial truth, but the real-life results are not trivial. If we screw up, disaster may ensue.
Yes Simon but we don’t need Buddhism to figure that out. Buddhists did not invent this concept nor is Buddhist discourse uniquely profound on this topic nor gives any added value over something that is already obvious: your actions have social, psychological and long term consequences. We don’t need a 2500 year old mythical figure and 2500 years of esoteric religious literature to help us understand this. It is all plainly obvious. Modern psychology and sociology is far superior at informing us of this.January 2, 2021 at 8:48 pm #35781
Well, that’s one of the functions of religion – to remind us of eternal truths and help us in life. To me, Buddhism does the best job out of all of them, with the most reasonable and realistic motivation – happiness: prevention of suffering, for the self and others.
It doesn’t hurt for Buddhism to spread a little more wisdom in the world. These things may be obvious to a grown adult, but what about a young person who might not know anything? They can’t be taken for granted. People could use help in working out how to handle life. Left to our own devices, some of us might never work it out.January 2, 2021 at 8:55 pm #35782
Any religion can generate the occasional inspirational or true statement, but the religion can still be false and, all told, harmful.
Are you saying that Buddhism is false? Mostly false?January 2, 2021 at 9:55 pm #35783January 2, 2021 at 10:05 pm #35784
Well, that’s one of the functions of religion – to remind us of eternal truths and help us in life.
I never realized what a cheerleader for religion you are. LOL
“Eternal truths”? You can’t possibly mean that literally, can you? Before the Big Bang? Shortly afterward? Still there after the last star goes dark?
The problem with religion reminding us of, shall we say, useful truths is the baggage that comes along with them Granted, Hinayana Buddhism has some admirable beliefs, but why can’t they survive and remain admirable without the rest of the baggage. For example, it’s often cited by people dazzled by Buddhism that it views reality as being composed of vibrations much, proponents assert, like contemporary physics, referring perhaps to string theory. But a common word in no way implies a common meaning.January 2, 2021 at 11:14 pm #35785
It doesn’t hurt for Buddhism to spread a little more wisdom in the world.
I think Simon you are blind to just how much the superstitious and supernatural elements of religion CAN and DOES hurt. Perhaps you are able to cut away the nice sounding folk-wisdom bits (I’m not sure but perhaps) but the majority of people in the world who do embrace it cannot. And believing in supernatural forces like karma, dharma and fatalism can be quite destructive. It can lead people to thinking that they deserve the bad things that happen to them, that they have one true path, to believe that them being a woman was punishment for wrong doing in their past life, to give into fatalism and it can lead to self-denial and giving up daily pleasures. Please try to see how destructive it can be.
If you need help there is an enormous list of secular humanist advice and guides written by cognitive behavioural therapists as well as tons of feel good stories and art. The Buddhist shit is completely unnecessary unless you honestly, despite all efforts simply cannot do anything without spooky hokey rituals and exotic sounding terminology from quaint old texts.January 3, 2021 at 8:16 am #35786
Reread my broken clock reference.
I find that it is right, maybe, 10 hours out of 12.
Eternal for the lifetime of the human family tree.January 4, 2021 at 3:07 am #35800
You had asked if there was a God in Buddhism, but I didn’t know whether it was curiosity or rhetorical.
Clearly, from your teaching repertore, you do know your stuff on World Religions. And I’m glad you confirmed I was taught right about Buddhism.January 4, 2021 at 4:05 am #35801
Regarding the Indian Ocean Tsunami: Here is where I am thrown yet again: Why is gathering dead bodies in a natural disaster a source of “racial tension?”
One, nations are not what people think of when they speak of “races;” there is certainly no one who speaks of an “American race.”
Two, dead bodies are sources of disease contagion and can draw predators and infected carrion feeders and thus threatens the lives and health of the survivors.
A nation struck by a natural disaster involving visiting foreign nationals should want as many foreign nations claiming and gathering the dead as it can get. You’re welcome, Thailand.
Third, more people claiming and gathering their dead makes other dead persons easier to identify by process of elimination. Again, you’re welcome, Thailand.
Four, finding the dead is a natural part of the process of finding survivors. If a nation wants help finding survivors, it’s kind of an unavoidable package deal. Again, no extra charge and you’re welcome, Thailand.
Five, finding the dead does not exclude other provision of assistance and in fact, rendering assistance comes with the finding of survivors which is package-dealed in with finding the dead. Put the added value on your tab, Thailand.
Finally, beggars can’t be choosers. If Archie Bunker needs a blood transfusion, he gets a compatible blood type with no choice of blood donor “colors.” Same likewise with disaster assistance of any kind to anyone anywhere. Free lessons in tolerance included, Thailand.
“Racism” has lately turned into the modern version of “crying wolf.” One day, people who value their “race” more than life itself may end up getting their ‘druthers good and hard. It happened all last year in the U.S. when stores and home were burnt to the ground, and I guess it can and will happen anywhere and anytime.January 4, 2021 at 4:23 am #35802
Not meaning to dogpile on you, but you don’t need a Bohdi Tree to find Enlightenment and there are other ways to approach pain.
Maybe a Masochist Buddhist could say: “Yeah, life is pain…but, damn! It hurts so good!” 😉January 4, 2021 at 5:33 am #35803
@theencogitationer Perhaps you should watch the movie, but I think that the foreigners were making demands that weren’t very helpful to a government that was stretched way beyond its capabilities already. Perhaps if they’d volunteered their services help the Thais identify everyone, recovering the ones they were seeking in due course rather than wanting to jump to the front of the line to find mostly white bodies… Like I said, maybe you’d profit from watching the movie. It is quite interesting. If you fine it as offensive as you seem to think it is, then you can come back and explain yourself.January 6, 2021 at 12:22 am #35844
I took you up on your offer and watched the entire video After The Wave and here is what I saw:
I saw a massive, horrific, perhaps unprecedented-in-human-history, global-scale cataclysm.
I saw untold hundreds of millions of organisms, both sapient and sentient, doing the best they knew how, with limited knowledge and limited capabilities, to meet prior commitments of survival, of protecting others, and of salvaging both tangible and intangible values from what was left.
(I say “organisms” because even fish, birds, and non-human animals all fled like Hell from the deluge they sensed was coming, and almost all stayed away from the toxic aftermath. Only humans actively jumped into the wreckage and carnage to save who and what could be saved.)
Those prior commitments of humans included, in order of occurance: saving themselves; their immediate family, friends, and loved ones; their fellow community members; their fellow nationals; and eventually fellow species members.
Along with that came identification and claiming of those who were lost and dealing with the physical, mental, and emotional aftermath.
Whatever mistakes were made in this whole ordeal–and there were big ones–none of them involved attributing normative character traits to inborn biological traits. Such attribution is what racism means and I simply didn’t see it here.
You could call it extremely short-sighted to separate Thai victims from non-Thai victims, but not racist per se.
And, of course, the Thai Doctor, Dr. Porntip Rojunasunan, in the movie was the main supporter of this separation of tsunami victims, not only or even primarily the outside foreigners. Again, no racism is necessarily involved here, just terribly limited knowledge by Dr. Rojunasunan.
I also saw all the technology that was used to better positively identify the tsunami victims and recalled all the individuals that made the technology possible.
Paul Revere was the first in recorded history to identify the dead from the dental patterns and records of his patients.
Sir William Herschel, Dr. Henry Faulds, Sir Francis Dalton, and Edward Henry discovered and developed the methods to use fingerprints as identifiers.
And James Watson, Francis Crick, and everyone with The Human Genome Project discovered and brought us the use of DNA to establish and seal the identity of humans even further.
Nature dealt human beings a terrible blow with the tsunami of 2004, but the practice of Enlightenment Reason and Science gave us the means of dealing with catastrophes better in the future. It may even give us the means to foil such catastrophes completely.
The final thing I saw in this video is countless chalk-marks on the ledger against the notion of a Loving, Omnibenevolent, Omniscient, Omnipotent God. As The Humanist Manifesto II put it: “No deity can save us; we must save ourselves.”
Thank you for recommending this video After The Wave . It was an emotional roller-coaster that had me in tears, but one everyone should watch.
Every spot on Earth is at risk for one natural disaster or human-made atrocity or another. We all need to know how to prepare and prevail, both as individuals and fellow intelligent beings together.
- This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by TheEncogitationer. Reason: Spelling and spacing
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