Why would I surrender to god if my culture had not implanted in my mind the idea that god exists?
What you say is absolute fact James. It differs from person to person.
What I totally follow is ‘Yoga Vasishtam, Srimad Bhagavatham & Bhagavad gita’ - which is accepted by many enlightened beings like - Swami Vivekhananda, Shirdi Sai Baba, and many. No one had denied those.
Then how could you reject those scriptures as just illusions - without trying it?
Say, in three religions, basically they say ‘Surrender to the Truth/God - and he will take care all’. Surrendering not means you are high and me low. Surrendering means - “You are everything and I am nothing”. We don’t know how atoms are created - if there is no something behind these creations (whether gross/subtle) - how can there be this wonderful universe?.
In three religions,they say, “Just god thought that - and formed this universe with five elements of nature”. You know about Sankhya isn’t it?. Those are all given in ‘Srimad Bhagavatham’. And another thing is the Lotus Symbol depicts the form of Universe - which resembles the same as the ‘scientific research’ in String theory and Loop Quantum Gravity theory - which is nothing but result of further research in Newton’s theory of relativity.
If you want to take a hold on to one author and inquire every word - just try any one of
‘Yoga Vasishtam, Srimad Bhagavatham & Bhagavad gita’ - where Yoga Vasishtam is fully subtle nature - same as Adi Shankaracharya and Ramana Maharishi.
You may start from page 118. Please don’t accept as it is. Inquire those within. It reveals many things in form of stories. Just ignore the names. But - try this if you are okay.
I don’t know any enlightened beings Viswa. The Buddhists don’t accept Yoga Vasishtam or the Bhagavad gita, neither do the Muslims or the Chinese communists. If you read the Prajnaparamita scriptures that are “totally followed” by many Mahayana Buddhists, they do not accept god. The Pali scriptures (followed by Theravadins) explicitly deny god and any belief in a permanent self - so why don’t you follow these scriptures if many other religious people accept them as part of their religious culture?
Please refer me James. I will surely look into it and inquire.
Regarding Buddhists James. Yes they reject ‘god/permanent’ and say about ‘nothingness’. It is nothing but what said here as ‘Brahman’ - which is nothingness and from which everything is born.
But whether Brahman is permanent - I do doubt Buddhism - why because - without permanency - there cannot be temporary. Only from ‘0’ there can be ‘1,2,etc…’ and if the ‘0’ is not permanent - then ‘1,2’ cannot be emerged/reside/die. In form of gross - Yes there is no permanency. But in form of ‘subtle/causal’ - there is no permanency - is something to be questioned.
They may have said that - as nothing is there to compare to Brahman, which is permanent - they may have said that - everything is temporary. But without permanency - no temporary can emerge/flow/end.
Take earth - if the land is moving from one place to other - can we walk in it without trembling?. But as the land is not moving (i.e. not moving from one place to other as shown in movies - this land one day dies) - we can physically born from it, walk in this, take from it and do everything material - without trouble.
The Pali canon (the Theravada Buddhist canon) runs to 58 volumes.
The Chinese Buddhist cannon runs to over 80 thousand words (around 100 volumes).
The Tibetan Buddhist canon runs to over a 100 volumes.
So there is a lot to read there! Maybe you could start with a famous commentary (which is not itself part of scripture) by Nagarjuna called the Mulamadhyamakakarika (Root Verses on the Middle Way).
Most Buddhists reject this. They say that there is no ultimate god - whether personal or impersonal - and no ultimate being or presence like brahman. There is only emptiness (which has to be understood correctly, i.e., not nihilistically). They are quite explicit about this, and claim this insight to have been discovered by sages and communicated in their scriptures.
May be or May not be.
But, take Buddha - he had liberated from sufferings/desire. If he is enlightened - he is emptiness or still temporary/ought to change? This enlightenment is ought to change or permanent?.
Yes - i will start those.
Where there is no beginning or end,
How could there be a middle?
This is fully said about ‘emptiness/nothingness/Brahman’. The middle are just the physical forms and thoughts. The Brahman has no beginning/middle/end - unborn/non-dying one. It is present there always. Nothing (which is temporary and born from it) can affects it’s existence.
Whatever comes into being dependent on another
Is not identical to that thing.
Nor is it different from it.
Therefore it is neither nonexistent in time nor permanent.
Is this universe to be identical to the ‘emptiness’?. It is the power of ‘lllusion/maya’ which confuses every being who inquires that ‘nothingness’. theoritically, the temporary things have the properties of ‘Permanent’ things. But here, how can we inquire/research the ‘subtle/emptyness’ in temporary things. How can we say this ‘emptiness’ is nor permanent?
If everything is temporary - ‘emptiness’ is also temporary - and so - emptiness can be found - only when universe disappears. So, emptiness is not present now. If there is no emptiness now, how buddha enlightened and found ‘emptiness’?
Nirvana is said to be
Neither existent nor non-existent.
If the existent and the nonexistent were established,
This would be established.
What is meant by ‘non-existent were established’? - See, if the Universe is existed and nothingness is existed - we can say - There is ‘Nirvana’. If there is only ‘Brahman/nothingness’ is existed and ‘universe’ disappears are non-existed - then there is no purpose of ‘Nivana’ - isn’t it?
After Nirvana - is the ‘nothingness’ is permanent or it will change? (I’m not asking the state of ‘nirvana’ as it is neither existent nor non-existent) but I ask - whether after enlightenment - one again have to go through sufferings - and attain ‘nirvana’ become Buddha and again suffer in a loop - as everything is temporary?
Katyayana was Buddha’s disciple noted for his debating skills. He asked Buddha: “What is the side of existence? What is the side of non-existence?” Buddha said to him: “Generally speaking, when people see the appearance of a thing, they assume that it is an objective existence, so they fall onto the side of existence; when they see the disappearance of a thing, they assume that it is objectively non-existent, then they fall onto the side of non-existence. A learned Buddhist will not react this way. When he observes the coming about of something in the world, he understands that everything can make its appearance under the appropriate conditions, so he does not harbor a view of non-existence. When he observes the destruction of something in the world, he understands that there is no objective existence for anything, because if something exists objectively, it will be impossible to relinquish or to destroy. Thus a Buddhist will leave the side of existence, as well as the side of non-existence, leading to sunyata, or emptiness. The middle path is built on this “Pratityasamutpada” or “dependently arisen”, “Because this existed, therefore that exists; because this arose, therefore that arises.”
Here, they speak only about objectively (physically) - Isn’t it?. If so, Of course - physically we cannot take side in Permanency of existence and non-existence. But in emptiness, it is present always - and from there everything arises. If there is no existence of objectivity - can we find ‘what is emptiness’? - Because the emptiness is unlimited - and so nothing to compare - it is there or not - and so neither existent nor non-existent - objectively/physically.
The nature of ‘Emptiness’ is being compassionate which is said in many scriptures. Say after becoming Buddha - one will be compassionate always or will again fall into ‘sufferings’ as nothing is permanent?
If they don’t again fall into this loop of ‘ignorance’ or ‘desire and sufferings’ after ‘enlightenment’ - then the ‘emptiness’ is there always and permanent - ever lasting and compassionate. Isn’t it?. In Upanishads - whatever said as ‘God’ is nothing but ‘emptiness/Brahman’ but is permanent - which we are ignorant to see and when we see it (enlightened) - then there is no difference between ‘seer’ and ‘seen’ - and we are merged with that permanency - not falling again to ignorance.
By drawing attention to Nagarjuna and the Buddhist tradition I merely meant to show that there are serious religious scriptures and serious religious persons who believe very strongly that god is an illusion, and who can refer to their own textual tradition to support this.
My intention was not to have a discussion about Buddhism.
Sorry James - I didn’t know that.
But one thing is, their beliefs may be wrong about ‘God’. Physically he may not be. And heaven/hell are real/not. But permanency in form of ‘emptiness/compassionate’ is present always.
And No restriction to anything for me, I’m open to everything - you can speak about anything in this world. I’m ready to inquire by neither accepting nor rejecting.
Feel free to inquire about K/the teachings or any scriptures.
Right - that is my point. All beliefs may be wrong about ‘God’. - So why have beliefs at all? (I am talking about psychological beliefs only - such as belief in heaven, moksha, god, angels, a perfect communist utopia, etc).
If you were born in a Buddhist country you would probably have Buddhist beliefs. If you were born in Italy you would probably have Catholic beliefs. If you born in the USA you would probably have Protestant beliefs. If you were born in France you would probably be secular, etc.
Yes - their belief may be wrong. But what if something is right - and we rejected every belief as wrong? Can we say no one has been enlightened by those ‘beliefs’?.
See, India is different from every countries - as you may know. This enlightenment is like something - which happens mostly in India (one in a century) - and I think - it may be because ‘tough times or sufferings’ happens more in India compared to other states.
This ‘scriptures’ of peoples in India - is way beyond everything. But what I feel is, if right guru has been there for Buddha/K/etc… - then they too may said about these ‘scriptures’ and the actual knowledge behind it.
See, I’m not separating this from everything - but don’t know why it happens mostly in India - but many believe that there is some power in Mount Himalayas - because of which this might happens. We don’t know more than that.
I’m not appreciating one and rejecting another - but this is what said in many things. Apart from deities/heaven/hell - the way the teachings as stories - is way beyond everything (even Zen stories) - and so I ask just to read once in a lifetime - what it actually is - by not accepting/rejecting. Not as a Hindu/Buddhist/etc… Not as ‘mine’ and ‘yours’.
Even if you read them as stories - without believing - you can see that the stories written - can never be fully imaginations - because something like that - can never be born without a help of the “compassionate one” - like how buddhist scriptures are borne by the compassion of Buddha.
These are your beliefs Viswa. In China they have their own masters, in Sufism they have their own masters, in Tibet they have their own masters. Every people thinks it is the greatest people: the Americans think they are the exceptional nation; the British think they are the exceptional nation; the French think they are the exceptional nation; the Chinese think they are the exceptional nation. And the Indians too. And the Russians.
The Jewish people think their scriptures are the most holy, and that Moses is the greatest prophet. Muslims think Muhammed is the greatest prophet. Christians think that Jesus was the true messiah and saviour of the world. The Buddhists think that Hindus are completely mistaken about reality and that only Buddhist scripture holds the key to the true Dharma.
These are all beliefs - and all you’re doing is repeating the average beliefs of most Indians (which are naturally exceptionalist and nationalist, like most other peoples’ beliefs).
But belief is not truth. Belief is put together by our thinking, by our thoughts. So belief is man-made; it is a mental image to which we cling (out of ignorance, greed, insecurity, or stupidity).
You do not need to believe in the sun for the sun to exist. You do not need to have a belief about love to discover what love is. You do not need to believe in physical pain to experience physical pain.
So if you believe in god, it is probably because you have been programmed - like a computer - to believe in god; and what you surrender to is therefore nothing more than a computer programme (created by mortal, fallible humans, like yourself). Truth only exists outside the programme (if it exists at all).
Sorry James. I think you are misunderstood me. I’m ready to inquire every scriptures in this world. I don’t say this is better than others. I’m reading now - Quran and Bible - and inquiring what it really means. I’m not restricting myself “I’m this. I won’t read those”. But, the difference what I felt is - more informations is there in Indian scriptures - both physical creation and psychological - like (Prakriti,Purusha,Brahman,Maya,Three modes of nature,etc…) - and I don’t restrict it as only belongs to India - it is there for whole humanity as equal to others.
I’m not fighting that ‘this is best and other is not’. But when we read - we are attached to that - and so we people fight. But if we are not attached - we are free to inquire everything. We are free to inquire Ks,Buddha’s,Jesus’s,Moses’s,etc…
And so I ask - to be not attached to one thing - and to be open to everything. I’m not brandizing Indian scriptures - but I feel “Oh my god - something is here left unnoticed - which is very much useful for the whole humanity”.
These traditions and people had created the feeling of sticking to one thing - or else you are doomed and go to hell. I’m not saying that. But to doubt and inquire everything - to try once everything in our lifetime.
I’m again sorry - if you feel I’m fighting on behalf. Absolutely not. It is only of compassion I’m feeling bit worried that “rejecting everything as beliefs without trying/inquiring everything”.
Absolutely. Belief is not truth. But what if it shows some way - which we failed to grasp it?
Just think another way James.
What if - some beliefs (like in religions) is put by the ‘emptiness/truth’ - as it is compassionate towards us?.
Viswa, belief is not truth. No “but what if”. A belief will never turn magically into the truth even after a million years of belief.
If I might point out: you are not investigating into belief. You are merely repeating that belief can be helpful, some beliefs may be noble, etc.
What is a belief? A belief is an idea that I have read somewhere, or been told by another, or that I have invented myself out of my own thought and imagination.
Something that is actual requires no belief: fire burns, people die, pain hurts, hatred poisons (psychologically). So can we drop our beliefs and remain only with what is actual in our lives? - And inquire from there…
I’m absolutely ready with that James. Shall we start from there?. In this dialogue or can you start a new one?. I assure you in that - I won’t bring any belief/scriptures into that.
So what is actual for you Viswa? You have spoken about sexual desire - is that something that is actual for you?
Yes. No sufferings. I feel it is ended.
This sexual desire/lust/driven by senses - is actual for me - and I don’t know whether it is for you and others.
Senses drives and shit happens - like how animals - no ‘me’ in there. But not too in animal way - as there is a different habit of watching porn/etc… - and senses drives and brings back that habit.
Ok, good. We can ask ourselves: “What is this sexual urge in myself? How do I meet it? What is the relationship between sensation and thought with regards to sex,” etc.
However, as you indicated, an inquiry into this subject probably requires another thread.
The other day I was talking with someone and they asked, why do you think what you say is right? Actually I didn’t make such a claim, and at the time had no meaningful response. Later I wondered why do people go through this examination of who is right? After quite a long self-inquiry, thinking about what is meant by right, I saw that it is fundamentally, this matter of self and the other. That is, in the way of thinking, the other is not me, and there is a question of authenticity, (edit: this raises a question of authenticity for self) and it is this that leads me to try to sort out what is right. I need to be able to continue to establish there is I, me, self. Otherwise there is no I, me, and this is a difficult thing to come to, and really we would only come to it conceptually, theoretically.
Actually it is curious isn’t it, that later I had to work through, as I said, a long self-inquiry, with no expertise, very unsure, and just guessing a lot, and then see this fundament. It is quite clearly nothing complicated, but for my way thinking. This point, self and other, usually doesn’t mean anything fundamentally, insightfully, to anyone else, and this is why long discussion is pointless. I don’t know how insight can be communicated.
I was listening to people talking together after watching a K video together, and I noticed everyone was talking about what they had got from the things mentioned in the video. You may think, that’s not surprising. But what they were doing was thinking about what this man in the video said, and how the content related to them, and what it meant as someone being told something by this other person, perhaps someone of significance. So their questioning was all about to what degree they could take any notice of what this person said, and to what extent it had any bearing on their lives. Again you might not think this strange.
There was no understanding to realise what was said, as something simply said by another person, for whatever it meant. They simply could not listen openly to what someone said. Their approach was always an internal process, trying to answer for their own purposes, for their own reasoning, the bits and pieces of what was heard, and then satisfy their own situation.
Usually listening is thought to be hearing the words and a focus on a speaker. Then in analysis I ask, did I hear the words or was I focusing on the speaker? Did my regard for the speaker cloud my understanding? Can I get a better understanding focusing on the words? And so on…
Then we develop an analysis which says the speaker is not any more important than many others, and asks, is there more to this greater than a speaker, greater than words and ideas? The listener is automatically cultivating this verbal construct of a speaker and a listener.
Actual listening is not limited to the words nor to any speaker at all. The actual listening is the brain receiving input without any filter. Then we have to see a speaker, and myself, don’t have a role in this. I don’t have to analyse the parts words, concepts, beliefs, authors, speakers, etc, play in the listening.
These aspects are mentioned simply as a prompt to negate all this. Then the listening is working freely, naturally. The listening is not fixed on anything, not the words and ideas, and not on anyone, or for anyone, and it is blossoming.