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Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Sun Nov 29, 2015 10:54 pm

SS,

Samsaric Spiral wrote:Many teachers can be argued to be deluded and frauds. Of course, genuine ones exist.

Yessir. Those -- or just one -- genuine one... would be the one(s) to present yourself before.

Don't give up.

We'll talk again when you've... .

--Joe
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Sun Nov 29, 2015 11:07 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:We'll talk again when you've... .


From my experience, teachers that discount rebirth after dying have a laxer ethics because, like you, they abandon all normative ethics. It's an everything goes kind of world and it's all Buddha nature, even genocide, to your extreme monism.

The precepts exist for negative utilitarian reasons for the goal of ending rebirth in both oneself and others. Ending rebirth or being reborn in higher realms, through Buddhist practice which dissolves the seeds in storehouse consciousness, is what the normative ethics is based on. Moreover, let me clarify, the Diamond Sutra is not saying to abandon all normative ethics; it is merely a statement that compassionate action is best not guided by intent to gain merit, and that thereby leads to more merit.

desert_woodworker wrote:No one can TELL another how one OUGHT to act. THAT is why the realization of the true Dharma is necessary.


Also, the contradiction here is that not even the realization of the true Dharma is necessary once you abandon all normative ethics. Why ought the realization of the true Dharma be necessary? ;)

No amount of playing with words or beating around the bush will evade the fact that abandoning normative ethics altogether leads to moral nihilism, sorry.

I'll go ahead and say what I really think: I think logical positivist and reductive physicalist dogma has become so ingrained in the psyche of many Northern Europeans that many people don't realize they are moral nihilists. They espouse views that invariably lead to a moral nihilist view and then skirt around the issue when challenged. Many have become cognisant of such biases and have become enamoured by pessimistic thinkers such as Patricia/Paul Churchland, Emil Cioran, Thomas Ligotti, etc. I'm sorry to say, but such thought is simply not compatible with Buddhism.

I'm sorry to say this, but you sir are 100% a moral nihilist. Evading the issue of abandoning normative ethics altogether with a play of words and constant smiling emoticons does not avoid this, and an appeal to authority (which is not unanimously agreed upon by Zen teachers) when dealing with difficult questions is even more nonsensical.

What has happened to Zen Buddhism in Northern Europe-USA sphere is it has become almost a subculture rather than a genuine religious practice. Note, I don't include Southern Europe because they added more positive things to the development of Mahayana without butchering it (look up Greco-Buddhism, which was noble).
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:34 am

SS,

Samsaric Spiral wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:We'll talk again when you've... .

From my experience, teachers that discount rebirth after dying have a laxer ethics because, like you, they abandon all normative ethics.

Thanks, good that you mention "experience".

Indeed, that's the track to follow. Acquire it as you live (experience). I have nothing to do with it.

If you don't practice with a teacher and sangha, I have no more words with you. Mine is not (any longer...) an academic or intellectual pursuit within this life. That's anathema to realizing the true dharma of Nature. Within one's body/mind... .

Thank me!, one day?, by helping others. I suspect I'll be gone by then. Helping others is the only way to express gratitude and repay debts. Teachers -- and helpers -- don't need it, nor want it. Well...

This is serious.

Strong practice!,

--Joe
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:36 am

Let me break it down in simple words:

Desert_woodworker is saying an ideal doctor embodies or manifests the Hippocrates Oath, feeling inseparable from it. This is descriptive ethics. However, he says there is no ought or incentive to following the Hippocrates Oath, meaning the greedy doctor is equally in the right. There is no ought for the doctor to embrace the Hippocrates Oath.

To apply this to the Buddha dharma, Desert_woodworker is saying a Buddha embodies or manifests the precepts, feeling inseparable from it. This is descriptive ethics. However, he says there is no ought or incentive to following the precepts, meaning the greedy man is equally in the right. This is no ought for the man to work towards being a Buddha.


It is just moral nihilism to abandon all normative ethics.

However, good luck in talking to him about it because he'll just post a bunch of smiling emoticons, make appeal to authorities to certain teachers, disregard all defeasible reasoning in anti-intellectual manner (when in fact Buddhists used it all the time), or use ad hominems.
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:38 am

desert_woodworker wrote:If you don't practice with a teacher and sangha, I have no more words with you.


I have practised with a teacher and gone to several zazenkais, as we've discussed a few pages back.

Also, your elitism is ridiculous. I listen to everyone regardless of whether or not they have practised with a teacher, and I'm not going to dismiss what they say with perky behaviour. Hail!
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:41 am

SS,

Samsaric Spiral wrote:Let me break it down in simple words:

Nope. No breaking-down. No words.

I suggest your "personal" breaking-down, as you are able. Without words. Wishes! for you, finding the best teacher (for you). And supportive sangha

:Namaste:,

--Joe
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:55 am

SS,

Samsaric Spiral wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:If you don't practice with a teacher and sangha, I have no more words with you.

I have practised with a teacher and gone to several zazenkais, as we've discussed a few pages back.

Also, your elitism is ridiculous. I listen to everyone regardless of whether or not they have practised with a teacher, and I'm not going to dismiss what they say with perky behaviour. Hail!

It's not just toward you that I extend and apply this policy. But you are, so far, 'special'.

You say you "listen". Well, I too will listen, and laugh, smile, and cry. And I'll hope that you get it right, one day, for yourself and all beings.

This is not "elitism". It is instead just that I know no better.

Wishes, :Namaste:,

This is simple.

No bullshit,

Gassho,

--Joe
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masteRe: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without reb

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:57 am

desert_woodworker wrote:SS,

Samsaric Spiral wrote:Let me break it down in simple words:

Nope. No breaking-down. No words.

I suggest your "personal" breaking-down, as you are able. Without words.


I suggest you learn to unify those words with the breaking-down wherein no distinction between words and wordlessness exists.

"Since the use of words is an illusion, Subhuti, and the use of no words is no illusion, then by means of using words that are no words, the Tathagata can, indeed, be seen." - Diamond Sutra Verse 5 (note, I change "possession of attributes" to "use of words", which is equivalent, check Red Pine translation).

Why not read some poetry or more sutras, so you can get it? Consider how their words come from Buddhas and are therefore Buddha itself, expression of Infinity.

See, I can use ad hominems too. I'm more direct though.

Wishes! for you, finding the best teacher (for you). And supportive sangha


The sangha is not a crutch to prevent quality, dailt solitary contemplation in natural scenery. All the Zen Buddhists from Wang Wei, Shiwu, Han Shan, Ryokan, and so forth got a nice dose of solitude in natural scenery too. Their words were aligned with the Original Face, inseparable from it. Their words were the background of stillness. As long as one practices sincerely and reads well, then there is no need for a teacher or supportive sangha unless you think Shiwu wasn't enlightened.
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 1:00 am

desert_woodworker wrote:It's not just toward you that I extend and apply this policy. But you are, so far, 'special'.

You say you "listen". Well, I too will listen, and laugh, smile, and cry. And I'll hope that you get it right, one day, for yourself and all beings.

This is not "elitism". It is instead just that I know no better.


I hope, for the sake of all other practitioners, they don't buy into your moral nihilism. Abandoning normative ethics altogether leads to moral nihilism. No amount of sophistry can ignore this fact. No amount of anti-intellectual dismissal can ignore it either.
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Re: masteRe: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 1:05 am

Samsaric Spiral wrote:See, I can use ad hominems too. I'm more direct though.

Ha, hmm, was thinking of William Faulkner, (1897-1962) of Oxford, Mississippi, USA, great author.

In his town, even as a man of very small stature physically, he put on airs of being a giant. Something like "royalty". :lol2:
People there called him "Count No-count"!

Our way in Zen Buddhist practice is to minimize ego -- or "self" -- and instead to practice.

That's the way to learn ethics, and Buddhist ethics. I have no words for you.

--Joe
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Re: masteRe: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 1:11 am

desert_woodworker wrote:That's the way to learn ethics, and Buddhist ethics. I have no words for you.


Do I have to pinpoint the amount of times you were snide?

Honestly, I feel as if you're making a mockery out of the whole practice by renouncing all normative ethics, which directly leads to moral nihilism.

Something like Christianity would have suited you better. I have a lot of respect for Orthodox Christianity btw. Even a deontological ethics is better than abandoning all forms of normative ethics outright and becoming a moral nihilist!
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Re: masteRe: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:06 am

SS,

I can't count very high, no.

Let others help.

I'll have tea now, before a respected TV drama begins here on this cool Sunday night, in our quiet, quiet desert.

Almost Winter! Yet...

...frost in the morning. ...butterflies in the afternoon!

--Joe

Samsaric Spiral wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:That's the way to learn ethics, and Buddhist ethics. I have no words for you.

Do I have to pinpoint the amount of times you were snide?

Honestly, I feel as if you're making a mockery out of the whole practice by renouncing all normative ethics, which directly leads to moral nihilism.


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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:40 am

desert_woodworker wrote:Let others help.


What do you imply by saying, "Let others help"?

This is a formal discussion / conversation. I am not some kind of test subject or medical patient that needs help.

Obviously, you can't have a discussion without constant red herrings or saying, "Oh, stop thinking, let abstract thought quiescence, everything is perfect as it is! :) :)!!" However, you do this while simultaneously conveying your own rationalized views, such as all normative ethics being illegitimate, acting as if they are beyond critique as you hypocritically assert "ratiocination is always weak". Such a constant stream of duplicity seems to shut down any serious enquiry.

This is a 4chan level discussion.

This is not how Buddhists in the past held Dharma discourses. This is why I left Soto Zen. Something happened to Japanese Buddhism during and after Meiji era, and it wasn't for the better.
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:44 am

Samsaric Spiral wrote:Such a constant stream of duplicity seems to shut down any serious enquiry.

Let others help.

Something happened to Japanese Buddhism after Meiji era, and it wasn't for the better.

Feller with a long memory, there, all please note.

Go for the Dharma, no matter what vehicle you prevail upon, presume upon, criticize, or presume to curtail.

(I say to all beings).

It's OK. Key is, the Dharma. To be discovered in mind and body. Then, all is very well. :tongueincheek:

--Joe
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Michaeljc on Mon Nov 30, 2015 5:13 am



Knowledge may hinder

Ignorance may liberate

Knowing when to know and when not to know, this is as important as a fluent blade


Suzume-No-Kumo (1434)

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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby chankin1937 on Mon Nov 30, 2015 1:45 pm

Joe,
Part of the original post :
Do not speak falsely.
B. 4. One’s own nature is wondrously subtle in the midst of the inexplicable Dharma. To not articulate a single word is called “Do not speak falsely.”
D. Fourth, the precept of ‘Do not speak falsely’: the wheel of Dharma revolves at the root without surplus, without deficiency; one moistening of its sweet dew attains the real, attains the true.


Joe wrote: Aitken Roshi's translation of the Vow, and of Dogen's comment, follows (ibid., p. 192):
"Initiate: I take up the Way of Not Speaking Falsely...
Assembly: The Dharma wheel turns from the beginning. There is neither surplus nor lack. The whole universe is moistened with nectar, and the truth is ready to harvest."

Wonderful! Dogen's comment shows that he recognizes and advises that the Dharma is to be realized. All that is there to realize is all there is, and nothing is over-done, lacking, or left out, and it has always been so ("...from the beginning"). Since this is the case even in the case of intentions of speaking "true" words, how much moreso is it true in cases of prevarication!


Hello Joe,
Sorry for interrupting your verbal battle with SS. I’m sure you’re feeling quite punch drunk by now. I was simply making the point that the precepts guide us in our daily activities while both B and D are emphasising some of the finer points in zazen practice. The precepts relate to actions while the comments relate to Zazen (inaction) and seem a little out of place in the context.

Also, "preaching" is to be deprecated, since, again, the Dharma is only available in realized-awakening, and not at all in words.


Does that mean we are wasting our time listening to a teacher? They presumably use “words”.

P.S. Aren't the precepts and the eightfold path normative ethics?
Colin
Last edited by chankin1937 on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby chankin1937 on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:06 pm

Diplicate redacted.
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:51 pm

Colin,

Joe wrote:
Also, "preaching" is to be deprecated, since, again, the Dharma is only available in realized-awakening, and not at all in words.
Colin wrote:Does that mean we are wasting our time listening to a teacher? They presumably use “words”.


That's a good point, and a question you could answer yourself if you had indeed spent any time practicing with a Zen Buddhist teacher and sangha. Well, for those others here who, like yourself, have not done this, appreciably, I'll just note that Zen Buddhist teachers do not "preach". Our way is not to establish a metaphysics, but to recommend and motivate a Buddhism of direct experience of the Dharma, instead, through development of the onset of true Wisdom, which comes from (freedom of) the body. A teacher's words are encouragement. And sometimes, there are pointers in them (and barbs).

chankin1937 wrote:I was simply making the point that the precepts guide us in our daily activities while both B and D are emphasising some of the finer points in zazen practice. The precepts relate to actions while the comments relate to Zazen (inaction) and seem a little out of place in the context.

Well, you're a little wrong in that sentiment. The Precepts relate to behavior, though, yes. Some say they're normative, and some say they're descriptive of the behavior of a Buddha and as such may be used as a touchstone. The comments by Bodhidharma and Dogen relate to daily life, and consistently to behavior, again. Oh, but do not (and I mean that as an imperative) think that those two masters make any distinction between zazen and daily life! That's where you go wrong, Colin -- and HAVE gone wrong -- every time... . And it is why -- and shows clearly where -- you have no understanding and true appreciation of Zen Buddhism, in what its practice develops, what its appreciations value, and what its comprehensive application and adoption liberates.

There's is a way to get clear about it, though, and dissolve that dualistic Hell that you have preached here from your first post at ZFI. See a teacher and begin to learn true Zen Buddhist practice. I say this for completeness. Just as the Buddha's "Noble Truths" begin with stating what's gone wrong, and then they end with a happy curative prescription, so do these words here today. It's en-courage-ment. And a hope to share and universalize the awakening of our original teacher, Shakyamuni.

regards,

--Joe
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby Samsaric Spiral on Mon Nov 30, 2015 3:40 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:
Something happened to Japanese Buddhism after Meiji era, and it wasn't for the better.

Feller with a long memory, there, all please note


Meiji and post meiji era were nationalistic and militaristic. It was brought over to the West by some Japanese war criminal and unemployed Zen teachers after WW2. It was an anti-intellectual form of Zen designed to condition soldiers into giving their lives unthinkingly for the emperor or other nationalistic purposes. It has also been displaced by Neo-Advaita, which has its own share of problems.

Older Ch'an had a far more rigorous intellectual tradition, with figures such as Wang Wei writing beautiful poetry and whatnot. It valued contemplative time in solitude within natural scenery also. Furthermore, they also had stronger values that wasn't distorted for nationalistic purposes by encouraging mindsets that resemble those with a lobotomy.
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Re: Buddhist ethical system is illegitimate without rebirth

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:32 pm

SS,

Samsaric Spiral wrote:Older Ch'an had a far more rigorous intellectual tradition, with figures such as Wang Wei writing beautiful poetry and whatnot. It valued contemplative time in solitude within natural scenery also. Furthermore, they also had stronger values that wasn't distorted for nationalistic purposes by encouraging mindsets that resemble those with a lobotomy.

The selected historical notes are from an interesting slant. :tongueincheek:

What counts is (correct) practice now.

My Ch'an master stressed study as much as correct Ch'an practice. His sense was that, in order to spread Buddhadharma effectively in the West, an appeal to the appreciations of the intellect would be of help to him in the new countries, and to us, and to his western monastic and lay successors. Indeed, he himself took a PhD in Buddhist Studies after his awakening, at the famous Buddhist university, Rissho University, in Japan. He also practiced intensively with Japanese Zen Buddhist monks. No problem. This was Ch'an Master Sheng Yen. He established a great Buddhist university in Taiwan, Dharma Drum University, where monastics and lay people study and are trained.

I have no bone to pick with Japanese Zen Buddhists, nor Korean Seon, nor Vietnamese Thien, and owe only gratitude and respect. My first master was heir to Chinese Tsao-tung and Lin Chi lines. My second teacher was heir to the Japanese lines. No problem, here. As there was no problem for Ven. Sheng Yen.

I send best wishes,

Regards,

--Joe
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