Let's talk about the Buddah!

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  1. profile image0
    sandra rinckposted 15 years ago

    The four noble truths:

    life is suffering- happiness is only temporary:

    1. suffering- pain, fear and mental distress
    2. suffering caused by change- while temporarily happy, changes in this illusion cause suffering ie: death, divorce etc.
    3. suffering of suffering- not even death is an escape from suffering when in death one may find themself reborn in which case all things in life negotiate with causes of suffering. 

    Causes of suffering:

    1. attachment- any attachment good or bad can cause suffering.  So the Buddah teaches us to not become attached to things even God for even attachment to God in any form represents some dispair.  So in meditation the goal is to detach from all things, so that the illusion of disillusion can cease and in oneself you can find peace or nirvana which is not bliss, it is not happiness, it doesn't have any true meaning other than "nothing" ness which is likened to being fully aware or "all" in which case no more thought should be given, so in the same way, I saw a butterfly, I became aware and I let it go.  Becoming to attached to even a beautiful butterfly if given to much thought is a cause of suffering.

    2.  anger
    3. ignorance

    Nivana or end of suffering

    Can only be achieved in ones own mindful awarness and diconnection with a world of suffering.  So in oneself you can change the way you feel or think about suffering, as I would like to suggest that the greatest misconception when it comes to suffering is that you have to.  In which case this is not true.  I could become angry with an ignorant comment, but what does it bring?  So instead of being illusioned by this cause of suffering I can chose to ignore it and end the suffering before it becomes problematic to change and other causes of suffering.  Or like my favorite Buddah (yes I am aware there is only one) the laughing Buddah, when on he discovered the causes of lifes suffering or the meaning of life, he started laughing and never stopped. 

    The eight fold path:

    1. correct thought
    2. speech
    3. actions
    4. livelihood
    5. understanding
    6. effort
    7. mindfullness
    8. concentration

    In the 8 fold path correction of thought, speech, actions, livelihood, understanding, effort, mindfullness and concentration can change the outcome of suffering so that when we are mindfully aware of the causes of suffering we can stop the circle of suffering by correcting our minds so that we, in ourselves, are not adding to the cause of suffering which is better for you and for ourselves. 

    So having the right intentions, and wisdom to understand under your belt, you can understand others and correct those actions in yourself. 

    Note-  It takes years of understand and long suffering to bring you closer to Nirvana or the end of suffering.  Like Sidartha who left his riches, followed suffering around so he could really understand it. 

    While many buddhist will do you a favor by leading you down this path, the most important lesson (imho) is to first learn the causes of suffering in detail, I mean to really go out and understand it for what it is, then you can understand other peoples causes for suffering and know when and where your actions are or are not appropriate. 

    Or when it doubt, keep your mouth shut!  LOL.  smile

    Love to discuss this more if anyone is interested.

    1. mohitmisra profile image59
      mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Very will written.The Buddha is a pearless master.Suffering and this world go hand in glove.He aslo emphasised on the middle path,that is there is no need to undergo severe punishment upon the body in order to attain enlightenment.He laso refused to answer quite a few questions.

      1. profile image0
        sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

        right, so in his refusal to answer a few question, why do you think he would do this?  smile

        1. mohitmisra profile image59
          mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

          Which question have I not answered?

          1. profile image0
            sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

            The question is, why would the Buddah refuse to anwer a question?

            1. mohitmisra profile image59
              mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

              An example of one of the questions he refused to answer.
              wether this world is eternal or not.
              He refused beacuse like I have said earlier."When this is that is not,when that is this is not.

              1. Sprinkler Man profile image55
                Sprinkler Manposted 15 years agoin reply to this

                Well then - when this is not then that is this or that is then - then it is not. So when this is this or that is that then that is that or is this that? because, I thought you were saying that what is - is not, after that I would have to think that what is - is that, that was not.

                If that was what was then, that could not be not, then how could - that - that was to be then was not.

                I always believed that - that was not was not and that - that could be was not - because that - that was - was not - could possibly be that - that was.

                Can I just say I believe in that -  that was and that will always be?

                1. mohitmisra profile image59
                  mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

                  Okay will simplify it,what it means is that when one is in the dimension of the light he is not in this dimension and when he is in this dimension the other doesn't exist.He cannot be in both the dimensions .smile

  2. knolyourself profile image60
    knolyourselfposted 15 years ago

    In so far as religions go, if indeed Buddhism is a religion which many refute, I like it best of em all. However think it is mostly completely misused. It becomes totally formalized and static, when the object is the opposite, as the joy of complete free mind.

    1. profile image0
      sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      I don't like to call it religion either.  As for the joy of complete free mind, I would say that it depends on which two buddahs with like minds are speaking. 

      In some cases I have talked to buddist who undoubtably have shown me a lesson, which at first glace I was insulted, but after more understanding of the person whom I was speaking to, I understood very well what his intentions were, and thus became a little more enlighted.

      I have never met a buddist I did not like or could not learn from.  smile

      No one can tell you how to think.  I love that you think for yourself, thus the name "knowyourself".  I would think the point is to know yourself very well.  Not so much having to know others very well, because we could say by these principles that it would cause suffering, but what does a box of chocolates bring?  Happiness until it is all gone! LOL.


  3. weblog profile image58
    weblogposted 15 years ago

    Sandra, sorry for the interruption. I believe the right spelling is Buddha and not buddah. I know that atleast because I have his birth name as my name (I'm Siddharthan, shortly called Siddhu).

    Buddha was a person who did not have any attachment with God or Religions. But, buddhists made him a God and buddhism is being practised like a religion. Tell me if I'm wrong smile

  4. gamergirl profile image88
    gamergirlposted 15 years ago

    The discussion is about Buddha.

  5. profile image0
    RFoxposted 15 years ago

    Greetings all!

    The Buddha refused to answer questions that would distract a student form their path: such as: does God exist?, how did we come to be here? etc. These questions take you away from the 4 noble truths of existence and further away from the Dharma path, so the Buddha refused to discuss them.
    There were other times he didn't answer questions because they did not need to be answered. smile

    A few other things:

    Sandy: There is more than one Buddha actually. There is only one historical Buddha (Sakyamuni Buddha) who lived on earth during our history, however, there are many other Buddhas.

    [The Buddha realized that that he was not the first to become a Buddha. "There have been many Buddhas before me and will be many Buddhas in the future," The Buddha recalled to his disciples. "All living beings have the Buddha nature and can become Buddhas." For this reason, he taught the way to Buddhahood.]

    Maitreya Buddha is the future Buddha (also known as 'The Laughing Buddha') wink predicted by Sakyamuni Buddha to appear when our world has fallen to it's worst with war and disaster, then you have Lokesvaraja Buddha who taught eons ago and Amitabha Buddha who become Buddha of 'The Pure Lands' for his compassionate vows to save others.

    Buddhas are not Gods, they are sentient beings who achieve enlightenment and so anyone can and has become a Buddha.
    So Sandy the Laughing Buddha that you have an affinity for is actually called Maitreya and is our future Buddha! big_smile

    Weblog: Buddhists have definitely NOT made Buddha a God, however, I understand why people think we have. Creating statues, temples & prostrating all appear to be God-like devotion, however, this isn't the case.

    Many people are strong enough of mind to keep with the Dharma path and their vows without the need for external help.
    There are also many people who need external help to continually break down the ego and remind them of the truth of their existence. Having statues of the Buddha are visual reminders of the path to enlightenment.

    When things become difficult people look to the Buddha's image for inspiration and as an example of what can happen if you stay with the Dharma path. If you become angry or frustrated with your family, for example, and want to yell at them, looking upon the Buddha's image and remembering your vows of compassion can stop you in that heated moment from doing something you might regret.

    Prostrating in front of the Buddha is not God-worship but a way to strip the ego. If you have ever bowed down in public you will understand what a humbling effect it has on the ego.

    The first couple of times you do it you feel very uncomfortable because of the vain concern of what people might think of you and other ego related issues that come up during the prostration. After a while though you can let go of these ego driven feelings and feel more freedom in your life in a lot of ways.

    I do agree, though, that in many countries and branches of Buddhism it has become a religion, with rituals and dogmatic practices that almost outweigh the true message. Buddhism should not be a religion, the Buddha did not want his teachings to become a religion. One of the greatest teachings of the Buddha is this:

    [Whenever the Buddha went, he won the hearts of the people because he dealt with their true feelings. He advised them not to accept his words on blind faith, but to decide for themselves whether his teachings are right or wrong, then follow them. He encouraged everyone to have compassion for each other and develop their own virtue, "You should do your own work, for I can teach only the way."] big_smile

    1. mohitmisra profile image59
      mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Very nice knowledge you have shared and was needed.The Buddha is the sate of an Elightened One- many have and will become Buddhas and yes the next or last Prophets name is Maitreya and supposedly the Dalai Lama is gaurding this universe till he comes as he will take over.The Sikhs also expect the 11 th and last Prophet as the Parsis are expecting a twin to be the next and last Prophet, the Hindus are also expecting him-Vishnu or the Maha Avatar as the Chritsians are awaiting Christs return. He is to declare himself now. smile

      1. mohitmisra profile image59
        mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

        Maetreya or Kalki will be born to a Bhramin family and he will write and unite the Religions of the world.smile

        1. profile image0
          sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

          I think it was or is more like all the people of the world regardless of their beliefs.  smile

          1. mohitmisra profile image59
            mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

            Yes it means the same thing or rather similar.smile

  6. profile image0
    sandra rinckposted 15 years ago

    Hey Rfox, I was hoping you would ring in here.

         Sometimes the teachings get confussing, I suppose depending on which path you chose.  But I like yours.  On some buddisht forums they discuss whether there are more than one or just one, and the conclusion was that even though there are many buddahs, there was only one teaching and one Buddha. 

    Can you tell me more about Maitreya buddha?  He cracks me up!  smile

    Once on a buddhist chat forum I got in a bit of a tango with another buddhist because said God once.  LOL.  Even when clearifying what I meant by God, they suggested I chose another word.  Of course this wouldn't be the first time someone has told me to chose another word, but I don't know what would be the correct speach to use considering buddhist are pretty sharp so anything even remotely close is taboo. 

    I do actually go back to the Buddha when exploring God, so I have accepted his teachings as right. Even if I chose to seek God as well.   So when I get to emotional about God,  I come back to gain my composure. 

    "He encouraged everyone to have compassion for each other and develop their own virtue, "You should do your own work, for I can teach only the way."----

    I absolutly love that, doing the homework before accepting something blind. 

    I don't know how many people really set out to understand the conditions of suffering, or if many are willing to engage in them temporarily to really see where it comes from. 

    And that was not my way of saying God did it.  smile

  7. profile image0
    sandra rinckposted 15 years ago

    Incase anyone was interested in knowing why I want to discuss the Buddha, it's because I also believe that the Spirit of God existed inside the Buddha and all the Buddha's to come. 

    So I want to get to know the Buddha,  it's pretty important for me because I need to find something likend to God, and Oneness seems vital, so which path makes more sense,

    Buddha or God

    Where as now I believe that God inevitably is in "All" and "Nothing", so like in Nirvana, I am neither all or nothing, but "         " is. 

    My agreement with Buddhist is in the four noble truth, that life is suffering.  So the other day on another forum I was thinking about that saying, "everything comes at a cost" and what I thought was...

    Love came at the cost of suffering as opposed to Suffing came at the cost of Love. 

    So even in what I can see in Life right now is, everything has it's opposite, but how closely related they are depends on how fine a line you can draw between the two. 

    In this instance I am visualizing, two light sides, All light, and three pens, one a ball point pen, one a marker, and the other a paint brush. 

    Which one draws a finer line?  Depends on the artist.  It seems what we lack here isn't tools, it's more like the focus.   

    So the other day RFox wrote something like, If you see the Buddha on the side of the road, stike him dead.  Something like that and I thought about for a while.

    So the message was, how fine a line can you draw before two becomes One again?

    I decided to become a painter and match His light with my colors.  (many puns intended)  smile

  8. profile image0
    RFoxposted 15 years ago

    Hey Sandy,

    Here's an interesting link regarding Maitreya, explains the legends and prophecies behind this future Buddha. Of course a lot of things in Buddhism are metaphorical and not to be taken literally.wink

    And the teachings can be confusing at first, with so many different branches. I like the analogy of the Dharma teachings being like a shirt you pick up off the floor.

    Each person will pick the shirt up differently. Some will grab the sleeve, others the collar, others the bottom but although we each pick the shirt up differently, at a different spot on the shirt it is still the same thing to each of us: a shirt! We all put it on even though we put it on differently.

    In Buddhism, no matter all the other teachings or different rituals, the only thing to really concentrate on are the 4 Noble Truths and keeping the 5 basic precepts. This is the core at the heart of all Buddhist philosophy no matter which branch you look at. big_smile

    A great book if you haven't read it is The Dhammapada. I have the translation by Gil Fronsdal and it is beautiful and great for the modern student of Buddhism to read.

    And Buddhists will always correct you if you say 'Buddha is God' (LOL) as it is important that people remember he was a enlightened man: the focus being on 'man'. If he becomes deified then people will start to believe enlightenment is out of their reach, that you have to be more than human to achieve it, which isn't true. The Buddha specifically asked his followers NOT to deify him.

    If however, you were talking about your belief in God apart from the Buddha then no-on should tell you to choose another word, as whether you believe in God or not is a separate issue to whether you follow the Dharma teachings. You do not need to renounce God to be a Buddhist and you do not need to believe in God to be a Buddhist, it is actually irrelevant to Buddhist philosophy.

    So you can explore God and Buddha at the same time, you just don't want to confuse God with Buddha.
    And from what I have read on the forums it doesn't look like you confuse the two. big_smile

  9. profile image0
    sandra rinckposted 15 years ago

    I just read that link.  Too funny,  I was hoping the story would be a little less prophetic and dreamy and more about why he Maitreya started laughing in the first place.  Besides him discovering the meaning or enlightenment or suffering etc. 

    So what made him laugh.  For me,  it must have been that all things are temporary, same with suffering.  So when he reversed roles and saw the other side of the same light, he realized he had his priorities backwards and started laughing at how simple it really was to acheive full understanding of what compassion actually is. 

    So he felt stupid to have to go through all of that just to come and find out that if first you fill your heart or mind with what is good, you can find what is good in everyone.  Knowing this, his suffering ceast because he knows that suffering will end, and there is no need to suffer over the afflictions of his peoples, but offer them compassion and understand and love, turning the whole world into one made of love instead of suffering. 

    I just made this up.  But I like it.  You rock by the way Rfox.  Course you know that!  tongue

    1. profile image0
      RFoxposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      You rock too Sandy! And please call me Rachelle.

      Your story is right on. I love it! It's true that the more enlightened you become, the more you laugh. Laughter is pure joy and pure joy is enlightenment. Guess that's why they say "Laughter is the best medicine."


      Now I must go and enjoy the sunshine. Have a great day!

    2. mohitmisra profile image59
      mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Laughing is an act of the enlightened one .He understands all is him and finds this universe very very funny.

  10. knolyourself profile image60
    knolyourselfposted 15 years ago

    My girl friend is on Facebook. She joined George Carlin's fan club. Better late than never is I guess operative here. Anyway she says George Carlin has in the neighborhood of 42,000 fans. The Buddha has something around 500.

  11. Inspirepub profile image70
    Inspirepubposted 15 years ago

    How pleasantly ironic to hear those words from you, Mohit ... smile

    If only you were actually saying them with full awareness of the irony - that would be truly enlightened.

    I know that text does not convey tone very well, so I will clarify that my tone is light and not critical at all (just in case an apparently critical tone displaces the enlightened response of laughter at my observation ...)


    1. mohitmisra profile image59
      mohitmisraposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Which words Jenny and if I have made you happy them I am happy.smile

  12. Paraglider profile image87
    Paragliderposted 15 years ago

    "The Light of Asia" by Edwin Arnold can be downloaded free here

    It's a life of Buddha (Guatama Siddartha) told in verse. It's a classic, from about a hundred years ago written by Arnold when serving in India. Though written by a westerner, the book was acclaimed and quickly accepted as an authoritative (and beautiful) text. For the western mind, it might be as good an introduction to Buddha and Buddhism as you can find.

    Here's a short excerpt - a well known story, beautifully told:

    A woman--dove-eyed, young, with tearful face
    And lifted hands--saluted, bending low
    "Lord! thou art he," she said, "who yesterday
    Had pity on me in the fig-grove here,
    Where I live lone and reared my child; but he
    Straying amid the blossoms found a snake,
    Which twined about his wrist, while he did laugh
    And tease the quick forked tongue and opened mouth
    Of that cold playmate.  But, alas! ere long
    He turned so pale and still, I could not think
    Why he should cease to play, and let my breast
    Fall from his lips.  And one said, 'He is sick
    Of poison'; and another, 'He will die.'
    But I, who could not lose my precious boy,
    Prayed of them physic, which might bring the light
    Back to his eyes; it was so very small
    That kiss-mark of the serpent, and I think
    It could not hate him, gracious as he was,
    Nor hurt him in his sport.  And some one said,
    'There is a holy man upon the hill
    Lo! now he passeth in the yellow robe
    Ask of the Rishi if there be a cure
    For that which ails thy son.'  Whereon I came
    Trembling to thee, whose brow is like a god's,
    And wept and drew the face cloth from my babe,
    Praying thee tell what simples might be good.
    And thou, great sir, did'st spurn me not, but gaze
    With gentle eyes and touch with patient hand;
    Then draw the face cloth back, saying to me,
    'Yea, little sister, there is that might heal
    Thee first, and him, if thou couldst fetch the thing;
    For they who seek physicians bring to them
    What is ordained.  Therefore, I pray thee, find
    Black mustard-seed, a tola; only mark
    Thou take it not from any hand or house
    Where father, mother, child, or slave hath died;
    It shall be well if thou canst find such seed.'
    Thus didst thou speak, my Lord!"

                       The Master smiled
    Exceeding tenderly.  "Yea, I spake thus,
    Dear Kisagotami!  But didst thou find The seed?"

           "I went, Lord, clasping to my breast
    The babe, grown colder, asking at each hut--
    Here in the jungle and towards the town--
    'I pray you, give me mustard, of your grace,
    A tola-black'; and each who had it gave,
    For all the poor are piteous to the poor;
    But when I asked, 'In my friend's household here
    Hath any peradventure ever died
    Husband or wife, or child, or slave?' they said:
    'O sister! what is this you ask? the dead
    Are very many, and the living few!'
    So with sad thanks I gave the mustard back,
    And prayed of others; but the others said,
    Here is the seed, but we have lost our slave.'
    'Here is the seed, but our good man is dead!'
    'Here is some seed, but he that sowed it died
    Between the rain-time and the harvesting!'
    Ah, sir!  I could not find a single house
    Where there was mustard-seed and none had died!
    Therefore I left my child--who would not suck
    Nor smile--beneath the wild vines by the stream,
    To seek thy face and kiss thy feet, and pray
    Where I might find this seed and find no death,
    If now, indeed, my baby be not dead,
    As I do fear, and as they said to me."

         "My sister! thou hast found," the Master said,
    "Searching for what none finds--that bitter balm
    I had to give thee.  He thou lovest slept
    Dead on thy bosom yesterday: today
    Thou know'st the whole wide world weeps with thy woe
    The grief which all hearts share grows less for one.
    Lo!  I would pour my blood if it could stay
    Thy tears and win the secret of that curse
    Which makes sweet love our anguish, and which drives
    O'er flowers and pastures to the sacrifice
    As these dumb beasts are driven--men their lords.
    I seek that secret: bury thou thy child!"

  13. profile image0
    Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years ago

    Buddhism seems to try to avoid suffering and is honest about it.

    Christianity seems to try to embrace suffering and in a sense a sort of masochism can develop.

    I try to learn from suffering, one does not have to accept suffering anymore than "fate".  At other times one may choose to allow suffering to build character. 

    Why does suffering exist at all?  I posit that suffering exists because we need it in order to function as human beings.  I am not sure the human being as it is now could neurobiologically exist without some form of suffering being inflicted upon it.  We are wired to suffer and adapt.  If there was no suffering, then how would we adapt and survive?  I suppose it is possible we could just increase our pleasure, but the idea seems pretty far fetched to me.

    Avoiding suffering and seeking pleasure is the tendency of all people, even those who "embrace suffering" and find pleasure in their pain.  They are still seeking pleasure, just a different sort of pleasure.

    Pain and Despair and Loneliness are very powerful forces indeed and they have taught me much about the nature of reality.

    It is too bad the idea of a rational loving "god" is not coherent and based on evidence/undeniable universal experience.  I for one would love to believe in a hidden "kingdom" because from all angles that I can see, life generally just sucks flat out and I will only be here for another 50 years or so (given life expectancy for the average american).

    Religious carrot and stick promises and the resulting denial of reality really do hurt the human race and cause untold misery.  However if there were a coherent evidential and logically feasible case for some sort of being that was benevolent then I would be the very first to believe. 

    Unfortunately all available evidence/experience seems to indicate there never has been and quite possibly never will be such a case.

    Buddhism advocates ignoring the reality of suffering in the hopes that if everyone ignores the reality of suffering then suffering will be essentially a non factor (if I read your post right sandra).  Buddhism then, does not propose to actually objectively eliminate suffering, it proposed to only change one's attitude towards it, which is very delusional, to say the least.  I see a lot of "buddhism" at work in the everyday world, where people just ignore suffering and pretend it is not their problem and slip into this sort of attitude that if other people suffer it's their fault because they do not have the right attitude towards it.  It is a good thing that modern science exists, otherwise the old evil attitude of ignoring the reality of suffering would still persist.  In the case of Buddhism, why do you need to help a relative get heart surgery if you have Nirvana?  That is the responsibility of that person to ignore the reality of his/her condition and reach enlightenment.  This is thoroughly delusional.

    Unfortunately Christianity does the same thing, but in a different way.

    I like Doctors, and Lawyers, and Scientists who develop technology.  In my opinion technology addresses the problem of suffering from an objective angle rather than a subjective one.  Secular Humanism is a social movement that addresses the ability of science and technology to objectively ease suffering, rather than only changing attitude towards suffering.

    Religion has been called the opiate of the masses before, and that assertion is not far off imo. 

    What I am saying may sound rather simplistic and one sided, but I assure you it is not.  Dogma of almost any sort, be it communist/politcal or religious or spiritual has shown time and time again it's inflexible failure to objectively address the problems we all have.

    1. profile image0
      RFoxposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Zarm: Unfortunately you have completely misunderstood Buddhist philosophy. (It's easy to do!smile )
      Buddhists strive for their entire life to end the suffering of all sentient beings. (Humans, animals etc.)
      Bodhisattvas actually take a vow to prolong personal suffering (which exists in life) in order to help other people.
      We do not ignore suffering or embrace it. It is just a fact that "Life Contains Suffering". Nothing you or I or anyone else does can stop that. We live to die. We are impermanent and this causes many people to suffer (among other things).
      A true Buddhist works hard everyday to help others and remove as much pain in the world as is possible for one person to do.
      Compassionate action is at the very heart of Buddhism. smile

      Many, many people read Buddhist philosophy on their own or hear it from a friend and unfortunately walk away with a very wrong view of what we believe.
      If you are at all interested in the truth of Buddhism then I would suggest talking to a proper teacher of the Dharma and asking questions so that you may come to an understanding of what we mean when we talk about suffering.

      If it's not of interest to you, then just believe me when I say what you understand to be the Buddhists view on suffering and life at the moment is incorrect.

      (Please don't take the tone of this post to be argumentative as that is not my intention. It's hard in writing to convey the proper tone. I wish you nothing but the best. big_smile )

      1. profile image0
        sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

        I also wanted to add, Zarm because you are a very intellegent being and not incapable of understanding things for what they are, that how much time you spend suffering is up to you.  In effect the more time you spend on self loathing the less effective time you have for other people.  LIke the saying,  you have to heal yourself before you can heal anyone else. 

        Hence...I am aware of it...now forget it.  You have heard that saying, "how long must I suffer"?....smile  As long as you will allow yourself to is how long you will suffer. 

        Yesturday I suffered for about 10 minutes, then decided it was not worth pining over something that I can't change, so I just stopped thinking about it. smile

        1. profile image0
          Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

          Erm, whys that?  There is tons of suffering besides self loathing.  Also the whole "heal yourself before you heal other people" stuff is not true in my opinion.

          A doctor in battle can easily heal other people if the part of his body that is injured is non vital and prepped up abit (although not healed).  Also, if his hands are injured, he can still heal that soldier, if he can stand the pain and it is physically possible.

          "You have to heal yourself before you can heal others" is nothing other than a thought terminating cliche in my book.  Pop wisdom, that is all it is and leaves no real room for differentiation.

          Thomas Aquinas once said "You cannot give what you do not have" but even that is simplistic, because things like love are grown, not traded and stored up and evenly or unevenly passed around.

          Maybe I should go to a POW camp in Burma and preach to the POW's that God loves them but they shouldn't seek geographical cures because they take themselves and suffering with them wherever they go?

          Or more realistically, go to a prison, and preach to the prisoners in that prison that they shouldn't seek a geographical cure because they take themselves with them whereever they go?

          I too experience pain and say "It's not worth worrying about" and then let it go, but what I find so intesely fascinating (and pleasurable to try and understand), is the very naive assumption that "life is what you make of it".  Almost like a syruppy form of emotional solipsism.

          I come from a background of Complex-PTSD and while I certainly do not feel "sorry for myself", I nonetheless will at times experience certain kinds of pain/suffering (those typical to Complex PTSD are quite significantly different from those typical of PTSD).  A complex PTSD individual can quite often fit right in and look completely normal.  I have found in my experience that damage occurs when I try to forcefully stop myself from doing this (experiencing the pain), and I take the approach of "let it take it's course a bit, and reign it in a bit".  In other words I can moderate the suffering mentally like braking a car going downhill, but just like that car if I slam on the brakes too hard they might give out, and if I let the car free fall it will surely end up crashing.  So in other words, there are moments when I can say "It's not worth worrying about", and moments when I can say "It is worth worrying about", but no matter what I say, It is there, and It demands attention.  Worrying about It too much will put me into self pity, worrying about It too little will just store It up for later when It breaks through everything else.  I take It as It comes the best I can.

          Balance is key, but you cannot truly balance what you do not acknowledge.  The first step to balancing suffering is acknowledging it A. Exists and B. You will feel it at times.

          Of course there is a possibility that this whole "discussion" is just pure semantics due to the type of medium being used to convey ideas in the form of emotions and thoughts.

          I think very seriously though that the reason one can hold a worldview of "life is what you make it", is because of one's environment and past experiences, not just attitude.  I am actually an Optimist, and even though my life up to this point a year and a half ago was so bizzare and terrifying that it would put most people in a very bad place (including me), I choose to make the best out of things.

          I may feel so much pain and suffering that I wind up homeless someday even, but in that case I would still make the best out of things and try to better myself and get out of that situation.  If I couldn't I could't but at least I could say I tried.

          Even if I lived in the sewers in despair and hopeless anxiety with nothing but the pipes and the darkness, there would always be a certain peace inside of me, because I know now that I am worth something.

          I am worth something, no matter where I am or what I am doing.

          I am worth something.

          For me this is an acceptable form of Fiat, one of the very few, and it is worth fighting for, it is worth dying for.

          What I am trying to tell you is that I am not injured in the area I "help" others in, far from it.  I know exactly what I am talking about, just because I feel suffering and experience pain does not mean I am more injuried than others in a way that is exclusively debilitating.  My psychical injuries give me insight, deep insight, about the nature of this race and everything in this world, including myself.

          Lots of pain is lots of information.  Lots of information can be converted into knowledge.

          Knowledge is power.


          I too do not mean to be harsh or overbearing, I oftentimes feel like a creature that grew up in an environment with 4 times the gravity of earth trying to come and live among earthlings and not totally crush them by accident.  It is just that weird

          On a final note, it is becoming apparent to me that I have indeed misunderstood buddhist philosophy, which I would like to learn more about.

          1. profile image0
            RFoxposted 15 years agoin reply to this

            Hi Zarm,

            The thing I find the most interesting about reading your posts, especially the above statements, is that from my perspective these sentences completely coincide with Buddhist philosophy.
            Especially the first quote about balance. That it exactly how I view the world. You must acknowledge suffering exists and that you will feel it. This view is at the core of the 4 Noble Truths. ( And no, I'm definitely not trying to convert you. wink Everyone must follow their own path through life.)
            I just wanted to point out that the philosophy you were railing against in previous posts is actually very close to what you seemingly believe. That is why I believe you have misunderstood Buddhism.

            Non-attachment in Buddhism is not about separating yourself so you don't feel the pain or suffering. If we don't feel pain and suffering we could never know empathy for another living being. Empathy is at the heart of cultivating compassion.
            Understanding how much things can hurt and how that can make us lash out at times allows us the freedom to see the good in others when they may be behaving badly towards us or others. It allows us to see that there is no such thing as 'true good' or 'true evil'. Only shades of gray. Humanity lives in the gray zone.

            Non-attachment has to do with not being attached to our negative reactionary emotions. The ones that make situations worse not better. It is not that we don't feel pain or suffering or that we ignore the pain and suffering around us, we just make a choice to learn how to let go of our negative outward emotional reactions. We still feel the pain deeply but we learn to express that pain outwards as compassion and love, even in the face of abuse. Compassion for the person or people around us at the time of being hurt stops the cycle of volatile emotions and anger from continuing.
            I must acknowledge others are suffering deeply and a lot of the time they probably won't behave how I expect because of that pain. I must cultivate non-attachment to those expectations in order to maintain balance. That is a conscious choice I have made. That does not mean I ignore my pain. I acknowledge my pain and I process it and then I let it go. Letting go is the hardest part but the most essential. IMHO. smile

            And I am far from enlightened so I still lose it on occasion, for me it's a life long process not an overnight change. 

            I hope that makes sense. Take care. smile

            1. profile image0
              Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

              If what I just said comepletely coincides with Buddhist philosophy then I will have to give this a lot of thought indeed.

              Thankyou Rfox.


              Looks like I have been practicing buddhism under a different name.  This is higly interesting.

              The idea that my own Naturalist approach is a form of buddhism repackaged is pretty darned fascinating, looks like I might just check out more of this stuff.  Chances are I won't dwell on it too long, just long enough to make the required analogical comparisons in order to find out where they differ, if there is indeed any difference.

              You caught me off guard. 


              1. profile image0
                RFoxposted 15 years agoin reply to this

                I'm sure there will be differences but that's the beauty of diversity. Buddhism is a diverse philosophy. The 4 Noble Truths, practicing meditation and cultivating compassion are pretty much the only things that stay the same from one Buddhist branch to another.

                People can be atheists, pagans, believers of God, scientists, naturalists etc and still follow Buddhist philosophy. This is because Buddhism isn't so much about belief but about action and intention. In fact one of the Buddha's major teachings was to not just 'believe' what he was teaching was right and true but to test it, analyze it, question it and come to the conclusion for yourself whether the teachings are correct. No Buddhist is suppose to just take the Dharma teachings on faith alone, we are suppose to meditate and experience life and decide for ourselves what we feel is true and right.

                I find a lot that many people are confused as to what Buddhist philosophy is all about and I understand why.

                Certain branches of Buddhism contain many rituals and dogma-like teachings. Tibetan Buddhism with its high level of mysticism and wrathful deities causes major confusion for anyone who has not been taught the heart of Buddhist philosophy to begin with.

                Another issue is that many teachings are metaphorical or designed to cause contradictions. This is a way to break down the ego and recognize the destructive patterns of behavior that we all fall into without being aware of it. Buddhism teaches awareness.
                However, if you read these discourses without knowing the context then you'd get a pretty screwed up idea of Buddhist philosophy.

                If you did want to read a little more about it I would stay away from Tibetan Buddhist texts and Pure Land teachings (they will easily confuse) and look for Theravada or Mahayana teachings or Zen (although this is a little different also but I actually like those teachings the best at this point. The Zen Koans are cool!) smile

                You may find a lot in common with the teachings and you will definitely find some major differences. That's the beauty of diversity.big_smile

                And I completely understand your post regarding North American society. I have always held Eastern philosophical beliefs since I was a child, yet I grew up in Western society and it's been a struggle. Especially since I moved to Canada and have to deal with major consumerist ideals.
                In North America if you told someone you were going to live in the wilderness for 3 months to meditate on death and the suffering of human existence in order to come back with a more compassionate and peaceful outlook they would ship you off to the psychiatric ward for an extended stay. Yet in Thailand and India and so many other places in the world this is a perfectly natural thing to do.

                Experiencing suffering, grief, needing solitude, wanting to give away all your worldly possessions and live a simple life is seen as crazy to people here and in Asia this is viewed as having great wisdom.

                So it is difficult to live within American culture especially, if you feel that way, but I believe the difficulties only serve to make me more aware of suffering and my ego driven desires and how I can change my behavior and reactions to things. How everything is my choice and that adversity can bring deeper meaning and profound insight. smile

                Great talking with you Zarm. big_smile

                1. profile image0
                  Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

                  Likewise, except that where I differ mainly is I actually believe it is ok to hate someone or something.

                  Not hate with all my being, but hate as in despise and look down on.  Not hate as in relagate to sub-human status, hate as in relagate to manipulative enemy status.  Hatred is nothing more to me than intensely disliking something.  I can and will inevitably hate people, but will refuse to hate certain classes of people in general or any certain "type" of people, unless their stated intent is the suppression of all entities which are not them or the suppression of all entities which do not do as they say or agree with them on some narrowly defined dogma (religious or political).  In this sense I could say, and rightly so, that I hate dictators, or regimes that do not allow for freedom outside of their particular brand of ideology.

                  So, I would then hate Communism, Neo-Conservativism, Naziism, Racism, Cultism, and other such isms which are attempts at total and absolute hegemony of not only public but private thoughts/emotions/behavior/consumption of information as well.

                  Inevitably one cannot hate an idea without hating the people who embrace that idea.  So I do hate certain types of people if they fall into the category of people who want no competition and are not interested in upholding other people's rights on a very basic level (like the right not to be tortured which is protected by geneva convention).

                  In my worldview it is truly ok to hate people or ideas, because by hating certain ideas or people you allow them no solid, easily obtained control over you.

                  All the major world religions say not to hate, they condemn it as a sin, but in my experience if you do not hate then your pity for the other party can and will be exploited to as much maximum effect as can be possibly squeezed out of a given situation.

                  Hate keeps people alive, it certainly kept our soldiers alive in WWII long enough to defeat the Nazis, but in my book hate should not be assigned flippantly or whimsically or based on preconceived ideas.  Hate should only be applied in situations where manipulation is present or tends to be present.  Hating someone that tries to manipulate you is good, because it disarms any sympathy they might have gotten from you otherwise and allows you to survive around them.

                  This is downright honesty, that may not make me popular, but I may just live a little longer than some other people because I hate at times.

                  Doctrine over person has no place in my life.

                  It is person over doctrine,

                  "Give me liberty or give me death"

                  1. profile image0
                    RFoxposted 15 years agoin reply to this

                    Interesting take on it. I certainly don't consider hating a sin. It's just that in my opinion hate hurts the person doing the hating more than the person being hated.

                    And I certainly don't feel sympathy or pity for those who would do me harm, I feel compassion. This sounds like a subtle difference but it's actually a pretty major one.
                    Pity is not helpful and will lead to being taken advantage of. I do not allow myself to be taken advantage of. The Buddha was certainly not a 'pushover'. Lol. wink

                    No, compassion gives me peace and enables me to help others who wish to be helped. If someone has wronged me or is making my life miserable I do not allow that to continue, neither do I hate them and make them my enemy. I simply tell them that their behavior is unacceptable and I cannot have them in my life if that behavior continues. So then it is that persons choice as to whether they stay a part of my life or not.

                    We should absolutely stand against dictators and 'fight' for freedom, however, it is possible to 'fight' from a place of compassionate love and peace and to not allow hate to take hold. IMHO.

                    The Dalai Lama certainly has never given up 'fighting' for the freedom of Tibetans but he doesn't do it from a place of hatred for the Chinese.

                    There is a seeming misconception out there that loving all beings compassionately and having empathy for all beings means you become a doormat. I've actually seen Buddhists who think because they take vows to do no harm that that means they have to take whatever horrible things other people dish out to them and smile and not respond. This is not a correct view and will eventually lead to major issues and pain.

                    When someone does you wrong I find the best thing to do is to simply call them on it honestly. You tell the person that their behavior is unacceptable, that it is malicious or hurtful and that you will not allow yourself to be disrespected. You do it immediately and then you walk away. But in my case I walk away with compassion in my heart not hatred. Sometimes you will never see that person again and your life will better for it.
                    Other times people will surprise you. Honesty spoken with a calm mind usually shocks people. Sometimes it's so shocking that they begin to look at how they are treating others badly and for the first time they acknowledge that bad behavior.
                    If you have compassion for them then there is a chance to see that person change and evolve into someone you do want to continue having in your life. If you hate them right from the start, however, that small possibility disappears. And because of my beliefs any small possibility to help someone overcome their own demons and maybe have them achieve peace in their lifetime is an important thing for me.

                    So that's my take on it. smile

          2. profile image0
            sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

            I wouln't take anything you say in a negitive way.  Like I said, you intellegent and not uncapable of understanding.  So I leave it at that, and also,  I never assumed you needed help in anyway. 

            Just because suffering is part of life, doesn't mean that people are incapable of dealing with thier problems on thier own, but for some, not naming you, do need help.  The term you called pop wisdom wasn't always pop wisdom,  but like in any religion or philosophy, a misunderstanding or lack of understanding takes from something good and makes it just another term that bares little meaning until used at the right time. 

            I have had many disasters of my own.  I saw you posted a comment that you have some fear of things like becoming homeless but that you will survive and you are worth something and you make the best of it. 

            I was there not that long ago.  I became homeless with my little one.  I wasn't immune to suffering or worry, but instead of blaming everyone else for my problems I picked up the peices put them back where they belong and did what I needed to do, but while doing it I kept my focus away from staying in the mental mode of distress, though aware of it, so that I could get back on my feet. 

            We all come with baggage of some sort, I just chose to believe that I can help carry someone eles baggage but when it gets to heavy I have to take a rest, and would not feel sorry for doing so.  smile

            I saw you and Jenny talking about death of a loved one.  I have been there too, and I did not grieve like your typical morner.  Instead for what ever reason I laughed.  I can't explain where it came from and I can't say I was not hurt or upset, and I really upset people with my lack of compassion, but it was not a lack of compassion,  it was more like an overwhelming experience to see your boyfriend dead with his eyes sown shut and not being able to tell him he looked like crap. 


            1. profile image0
              Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

              This sounds like a macabre reaction sandra, I am sad that he died in such a way.

              I am so sorry and nothing I do will take away that pain and loss, but I am sad none the less.

  14. Inspirepub profile image70
    Inspirepubposted 15 years ago


    You appear to be characterising the Buddhist approach to suffering as equivalent to the dissociation and denial practised in the West. I assure you it is quite different.

    I came to understand it when it was expressed to me thusly:

    Pain is inevitable.
    Suffering is optional.

    The "suffering" that Buddhists accept is the inevitable pain which occurs in life. Resisting that pain is what causes suffering. Thus, the woman who is trying to resist the loss of her son is adding a layer of suffering to the pure pain of loss.

    It is possible to grieve for the death of a loved one without suffering. I have done it. It was a very eye-opening experience.

    Buddhists don't so much "embrace suffering" as they accept the inevitability of pain, and by that acceptance they so not experience the suffering associated with resistance (against something) and striving (for something) - they are at peace under all circumstances.


    1. profile image0
      Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Then perhaps I am wrong, however I will say this much:

      While I do see parallels to what you are saying in the world around me, such as a man that gets hit by a truck and because he did not anticipate it he rolls with it and survives, I would still contend that plants that sway with the wind can simply be eaten by deer that come along who are hungry.  In other words, a greater amount of force will render acceptance irrelavent. 

      "Pain is inevitable.
      Suffering is optional"

      This is attitude change, it is doing with one's attitude the same thing that Judo practitioner's do with their body.  However, any Judo practitioner would tell you that if someone came along with a gun and was a good shot and fired twenty feet away with a clear shot and a fully loaded clip that there would be a serious chance that all the Judo in the world wouldn't save that person from getting hurt, due to the force and other overcoming factors such as tactical disadvantage.

      Suffering is the result of pain, to me denying that reality is one of several things that lead to dissociation.  The difference between X-tianity and Buddhism in this respect is that Buddhism does not seek out more pain in order to master suffering, they are content to master the suffering they have with the pain they have.  Wouldn't that be a fateful statement though?  Not really, because available science points to studies that show that people who get seriously injured experience suffering.  However, neuroscience does not confirm the assertion that suffering is optional, as far as I can tell neuroscience recognizes that they are part and parcel and linguistically uses those terms interchangeably.  Also a quick check into the ER after surgery would prove this false as people's groans clearly indicate a form of suffering. 

      It is on this basis that Doctors take the Hippocratic Oath to help ease people's pain and the resulting suffering.  Buddhism then is not really compassionate if it isn't doing something to help people outside of telling them that attitude change is the best policy.  Like all religion, it only truly works for a time if everyone is doing it, and even then it eventually falls through.

      As far as grieving for the death of a loved one without suffering, I have seen this done many times, especially when such a person was considered to be "saved" or to have led a "holy life".  The people that see the person die are sad for a bit, but if they are really good at their religion they won't suffer as a result of it.  I saw one lady who just said "So and So is in Heaven now, praying for us, interceding for us", with the most happily deluded voice ever.  She isn't seriously grieving or suffering as a result of that person dying, because she simply accepted that that person was dead right off the bat, <<due to lack of attachment>>.

      For me if one experiences someone dieing and does not suffer at all then that is indicative of the manner of atachment one had to that person.  Which is exactly why Buddhism seeks to get rid of attachment to anything, because true attachment causes suffering.

      In the real world when two things are joined together, when they are torn apart it leaves marks on both of them usually, so as far as I am concerned, buddhism doesn't really bring anything new to the table, jsut a different approach that isn't so masochistic and actively seeking out suffering as some forms of x-tianity.

      Attachment is evil in buddhism.  When you take this to it's logical outcome, you might have a very "non sufferable" existance, but that smile and that "peace" isn't going to be indicative of anything other than mediocrity in my book.

      Seductive yes, this "peace", but really only mediocrity.

      The obvious question is why is suffering bad?

      I am not so sure it is.  When the good times come, the ability to suffer helps one to appreciate the difference between the good times and the past suffering.  Likewise, when the suffering comes, the difference between the good times and the suffering helps one to appreciate the difference between the two.  I would liken to say it is being connected to one's emotions.  However, it is only human to encourage the good times and of course people do.

      For me life is not trying to be either an oak tree or a reed swaying in the wind.  Life is not also like being an expanding pool of methane gas that suffocates.

      For me life is like being a liquid.

      In my life experience, when I truly believed in all areas of my life that pain was just a mindgame, and that I did not have to suffer if I did not want to, that attitude took away all the joy as well, and the suffering only increased despite my denial of it's reality by trying to focus on something else.  If christianity is like a river with a dam and buddhism is like a river with no big obstructions, dam or not, you still have flooding.  And flooding over time can stop the river by introducing foreign objects into it.

      Nature is the worst taskmaster, because in the end, she doesn't care what you feel about anything.  If anything, we are the only part of nature that cares other than other animals.  I don't see the local scorpion rubbing up against me to give me a lick of his tail so that I feel better (unlike dogs who will lick me with their tongue instinctively when they sense me suffering).  I suppose it would be more correct for me to say that sentient beings represent the part of nature that is capable of caring more than any other part of nature and that non sentient beings are capable too.  Inanimate objects and laws and physics are not good to worship, nothing is, why the hell would I want to worship something like a tsunami that could destroy me in two seconds? 

      I don't submit when I meet resistance, I corrode, I subvert.  Until I find a way out, and then I am at peace again.

      Life is suffering at times, at times life is not.  I find it stupid to reverse the two (masochism is bad), I just simply live and accept what comes my way when I must, and overcome what comes my way when I can.  Enjoy the good times, learn from the bad times, experience my life and die.  It really is too bad there is not more evidence for something other than this, other than people saying there is more evidence (testimony and fiat).

      That is my attitude. 

      Life is not "what you make of it".  Life is partly that, but it is also partly other things as well.

      That is my contention in short.

  15. knolyourself profile image60
    knolyourselfposted 15 years ago

    For me the essence of Buddhism is the concept of the transcension of the duality of opposites. Opposites can be viewed as positive, like the balance between the cold of space and the heat of the sun is the mechanics of a material world. Opposites can be viewed as negative like good day and evil night. Suffering is the result of all the friction that arises from the dualist perspective of like: I am better than you because I hold superior truths, thus leading to the accordant resentments. The transcension of opposites leads to compassion: as
    the understanding of discord and the unity of differences.

    1. profile image0
      sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      The unity of differences, that's what I am talkin'bout.  smile

  16. Misha profile image63
    Mishaposted 15 years ago

    averse and reverse = coin
    summer and winter = year
    good and evil = ?
    light and darkness = ?

    1. profile image0
      sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      moving and not moving=?

      Welcome back Misha, how was the move?  smile

  17. weblog profile image58
    weblogposted 15 years ago

    Misha is back big_smile

  18. Misha profile image63
    Mishaposted 15 years ago

    Thanks Sandy smile

    Move itself was hard but not so bad, the worst is I still don't have normal Internet access - Verizon sucks big time! - and currently I am using dial up on my wife's work laptop sad

    I am dumping Verizon and going Cox, by the end of the week I should be fine smile

    Back to the topic - in Russian we have a special word for day plus night, too. Does this mean Russians are more Buddhists than Americans? wink

  19. profile image0
    Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years ago

    "And I let it all out to find, that I'm not the only person with these things in mind"

    Linkin Park

  20. Inspirepub profile image70
    Inspirepubposted 15 years ago

    Zarm, I see I have failed to communicate.

    Would it help you to know that I have also experienced and started to heal from dissociation due to childhood trauma? (Psychotic mother - who somehow remained our primary caregiver because my father didn't know what to do so he just hoped it would go away, and there was no extended family around.)

    http://hubpages.com/hub/Finding-Ones-Se … ssociation

    I see right through the lie, misdirection and denial which masquerades as "acceptance", just as you do.

    When I grieved without suffering, I had no religious beliefs, and the person I lost was someone I loved dearly - literally just as much as I loved my husband at the time.

    I assure you, I felt all the stages of grief - denial, anger, guilt, sorrow, and finally acceptance (which is not as sweet as it sounds, let me tell you - more on that later, or in a Hub perhaps).

    I felt them deeply and completely. They washed through my body like tidal waves. I was incapacitated from working at times.

    But I did not suffer. I did not at any time wish the pain away, or resist it. I found the whole experience totally amazing. For the first time in my life, I allowed my self just to feel whatever I felt, without feeling I had to justify my feelings. It was like surfing a 50 foot break - incredibly intense, and a feeling that people could and would detest, I could see that.

    But I didn't.

    I still feel sad sometimes now, and it is 15 years later.

    But I don't suffer.

    Zarm, there are scientific studies which show that psychologically resisting physical pain causes physical tension which makes the subjective experience more painful, and that meditation reduces the subjective intensity of pain. Cognitive psychology is full of similar studies with regard to depression, phobias, panic attacks, etc.

    Look them up - there is pain (physical or emotional) and then there is the layer of "making it worse" that we can add or not add.

    Totally independent of any religion whatsoever.


    1. profile image0
      Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Then your definition of suffering is different from mine, because in my book suffering is merely experiencing pain and being allowed to reflect on it and be honest about it, and realize it for what it is, and then try as best as I can to move on after it hurts me.

      Any pain, not just intense pain...

      With the background I came from I could not feel pain unless given direct verbal permission to do so as I was not good at reading non-verbal cues......

      Any pain. 

      At all.

      Or pleasure even....

      I Hate people who do not allow me to feel pain, or attempt to do so.

      Now that I have no one dominating me or group of people dominating me, I am free to feel as I wish, (but only to a very significantly large degree not completely).

      You must live in a different society than I do, because in American society those who do not resist suffering and instead allow it to wash them like tidal waves are viewed as truly weak and pathetic in a very utopian sort of Social Darwinism.  In America you are looked down on if you surrender to pain and Truly make Sense out of it.  Which is what you have done.  You have made sense out of it 100%, and for this I congratulate you (maybe not exactly 100% but you have by and large).  Just know, that some places on earth do not allow that process to take place as completely as your place on earth does...

      It is something I deeply resent, which is why I say "Screw the system".  I'll run the "rat race" just like everyone else, but that won't stop me from deeply resenting the fact that those who don't toe the party line in America- the line that implies that every American is a superman or superwoman- get mowed under ruthlessly by the system. 

      It is good then that you do not live stateside as you have had a chance to make sense out of your experiences without being societally forced to resist them somewhat or drugged up and diagnosed (or maybe you have at one time who am I to assume?).  That is truly a good thing and I am very happy, deeply happy as a matter of fact for you.  From one survivor to another.

      Oh no, I am not a victim of anyone, for in my society to be a victim is to be labeled a victim and to become a victim yet again....

      To be born again...

      I will leave you with a quote from the movie V for Vendetta:

      Valerie: I remember how the meaning of words began to change. How unfamiliar words like "collateral" and "rendition" became frightening, while things like Norsefire and the Articles of Allegiance became powerful. I remember how "different" became dangerous. I still don't understand it, why they hate us so much.

      Valerie: It seems strange that my life should end in such a terrible place, but for three years I had roses and apologized to no one. I shall die here. Every inch of me shall perish. Every inch, but one. An inch. It is small and it is fragile and it is the only thing in the world worth having. We must never lose it or give it away. We must NEVER let them take it from us. I hope that whoever you are, you escape this place. I hope that the worlds turns, and that things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that, even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you, I love you. With all my heart, I love you. Valerie.  "

  21. Inspirepub profile image70
    Inspirepubposted 15 years ago

    I loved "V for Vendetta".

    And I saw it right in the middle of a huge emotional firestorm in which I was being held responsible for the ricochting emotions of a bunch of people who weren't even TALKING to me at the time - but somehow, according to this person, it was all my responsibility.

    Anyway, watching "V for Vendetta" right at that moment restored my sense of perspective.

    Integrity is the only thing we have. What others do with that is their choice. We are all free.

    I love the intricate shades of moral greyness in that movie. Had she known what it would take, would she still have asked for freedom?

    The price of my freedom was extraordinarily high - as was yours, I imagine - and had there been a way to know how much it would cost in advance, I may have shrunk back. I am glad I didn't know. I am glad a wrote a blank cheque and honoured it. The results are worth it.

    And do we have the right to answer another's request when the price of the prize they want is incredibly high? When they don't know what it will cost them? When they curse you every step of the way? But you know they want to reach the destination, and the only way out, is through ... do we have the right to drag them through?

    I love that movie. So much to think about afterward.

    What price freedom? And is it worth the price?


    1. profile image0
      Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Indeed Jenny. 

      One thing I have noticed time and time again is that people love to blame.  It is something that has always fascinated me, the human propensity to just offload one's problems onto a bystander who has nothing to do with the thing in question.  As I myself have been the recipient of this phenomenon on several occasions it never ceases to amaze me how this happens.  It seems to me that a lot of "society" can be expressed by saying that those who are forced to take responsibiliy for wrongdoing are those who are not in power. 

      Yes, V for Vendetta is an excellent movie and it is one that does put things into perspective.  Integrity is all we have, which is why I stay away from dogma for the most part.  In my book there are only few dogmas:

      1.  I am worth something

      2.  My friends are worth something

      3.  People have the right to live in a society where they have freedom of conscience and can believe or disbelieve as they choose to without being coerced by the state or religious authorities to falsely "choose" to do the "right" thing.  All men are "created" equal and have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

      4.  My significant other is worth something + more (I don't have one yet).

      Yes, it was hard to get out of situation I was in.  Perhaps I will share some of it someday, it is difficult because most people don't understand the detrimental effects of being raised in zealory.  Not fundamentalism, true blue zealotry, religious zealotry.  Cultism/Extremism with the potential to become fully blown terrorism.  Most people do not know what that environment is or what it's like.  I can tell you that in that environment I got blamed quite a bit for everything that could be ofloaded onto me.  I will also tell you that before I got out of that situation I had to drink Ensure for 5-7 days before I could consistently put solid food down, due to "fasting" to "discern God's will" in regards to a request made by the group to which I could only say "yes".  That was not the only part of it.

      In any case I do know what integrity is and no one will take that from me.

      No one.

  22. dayzeebee profile image69
    dayzeebeeposted 15 years ago

    hello there. i was part of a musical called Siddhartha, a musical journey to enlightenment and made a hub about some lessons we (catholic performers) learned along the way. http://hubpages.com/hub/Boundless-Love. i thought it could be a little contribution to the discussion. thanks

  23. knolyourself profile image60
    knolyourselfposted 15 years ago

    Not to disagree with any others but I agree with you Zarm. I love to hate. I enjoy it, revel in it - for instance I revel in hating Bush and when he dies, if I am still alive, I jump for joy. Don't hate him personally. Know I would like him personally. I hate his stupidity
    and the thousands and thousands of dead and maimed he
    is responsible for. I wasn't born with the body of an angel, and enjoy feeling, as you may say, the honesty of the situation. Let God forgive him but I will never. But on the other hand I have a higher identity, that is above it all, so long as it is not me they come for. Since I can both be beyond humanity and be human,
    I enjoy being human. If I forgive Bush he gets away with it. Not sorry it's not gonna happen. Feels good.

    1. Inspirepub profile image70
      Inspirepubposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Fascinating demonstration of the inherent fallacy in hatred.

      Nothing you feel has any impact on him at all. Your hatred isn't hurting him, and your forgiveness won't help him. He is oblivious to you.

      There is a childlike delusion we all have, which is that our emotions can hurt other people, and by having bad emotions about someone we are punishing them in a way that will actually have an impact.

      This is why harboring resentment has been described as "swallowing poison and expecting someone else to die".

      Bush "gets away with it" (or has to live in his own personal version of Hell) whether you rot your gut with emotionally roiled bile for decades, or let it all go at some point and attain deep calm.

      Bush won't suffer from your hatred, but your body will.

      It is your choice how you use your body, and displaying the effects of harboring hatred is a perfectly fine way to use it. Just be consciously aware that is what you are doing, and don't get lost in the illusion that your self-destructive display will affect Bush in any way.

      Or carry on as is. Examples of ignoring reality have their place, too. smile


      1. profile image0
        Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

        Replace the word hatred with the word love, and you've got the exact same scenario Jenny.  Does that make love delusional?  Of course not.

        1. profile image0
          Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this


          Fascinating demonstration of the inherent fallacy of Love.

          Nothing you feel has any impact on him at all.  Your love isn't helping him and your bitterness won't help him.  He is oblivious to you.

          There is a childlike delusion we all have, which is that our emotions can help other people, and by having good emotions about someone we are rewarding them in a way that will actually have an impact.

          This is why fostering love has been described as "swallowing medicine and expecting someone else to be healed".


          It is your choice how to use your body, and displaying the effects of fostering love, is a perfectly fine way to use it.  Just be consciously aware that is what your doing, and don't get lost in the illusion that your joyful display will affect Bush in any way.

          Or carry on as is.  Examples of ignoring reality have their place too.

          I just reversed everything you said and made the fallacy in what you have said perhaps a little more apparent (I hope).

          Neither wishing someone love nor wishing someone hate having any bearing on the person the emotion is felt towards is the delusional part imo.  Human beings have emotions, and to hate too much or to love too much is to simply find repititious states of imbalance that are based on nothing other than social expectation.  That is all the anti-hatred doctrines are as well, and instead of calling something hate and allowing people to feel it, most societies look down on hate and it ends up getting repackaged under different names and different circumstances.

          There is nothing wrong with Hate.  It is an emotion and it is not irresponsible or childlike to feel it.

          I for one am pretty certain that anyone here who claims to not hate anyone is fooling only themselves.  Hate is real and under certain circumstances it is necessary and keeps people alive and well.

          The only delusion I see is people claiming that it must be bad no matter what (in regards to hating other people).

          That is like the old fallacy the conservatives have of "Love the Sinner, Hate the Sin".

          In the end they hate both, but yet if you asked them they would still insist that they only hated one.  Why?  Because their dogma does not allow the concept of hate to be conciously acknowledged outside the context of repentance and subsequent turning to love.

          Unfortunately not only the conservatives commit this error, but so do others.  I can see why people do it, they really want to believe there are no people they do no intensely dislike (which is the definition of hate).  They want to pretend there are not people they are disgusted with at times (or just flat out disgusted with most of the time).  They want to believe that they can love everyone.

          I used to beleive that.  In my experience, most people that love everyone are walked on by everyone.

          Hate is necessary, one must despise a person(s) in order to keep their identity, otherwise one gets tooled around.

          Hate need not be permanent.  Grudges I try to avoid, although sometimes that has to be held in a rare circumstance, but those are few and far between, and usually are a product of a lifetime of suffering.

          Love is important, it is the lifeblood of this race (homo sapiens), but imo if one cannot hate then one cannot survive in the midst of people who are neither loving nor well meaning (and the world has plenty of them).

          I try to be loving towards people but that does not mean I love them.

          1. Misha profile image63
            Mishaposted 15 years agoin reply to this

            I think trying is what really counts smile

            1. profile image0
              Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years agoin reply to this

              Thx smile

              I try, as do most of us.


  24. Misha profile image63
    Mishaposted 15 years ago

    I love you all, guys! What a great thread! smile
    Oh, and yeah, I'm with Rachelle and Jenny on hatred. Not that it is a sin or a bad thing to do - it just hurts you and only you smile This is not to say I am already there and never hate anybody wink

  25. knolyourself profile image60
    knolyourselfposted 15 years ago

    Love ya back Misha. However I am not gay - 'not that there is anything wrong with that'.

  26. profile image0
    sandra rinckposted 15 years ago

    I am with all of you.  I think compassion is for understanding the reasons behind a person behavior.  I am not sure it has much to do with hurting yourself or someone else. 

    Shucks, when it comes to hating.  I hate a lot of things, but I don't hate people, I guess that is the difference.  I hate being in a bad situation, I damn bad situations, fudge,  scream and halla sometimes too, not often, but I do, and I even tell people when I can not stand them, but I would never actually turn my back to someone in need. 

    I suppose it is because I know that somewhere inside they are just like me, dealing with their life too.  So, I wouldn't call myself a door matt either, and when someone takes too much, I say that is enough and move on. 

    It is not always right to allow people to do things that you know they shouldn't do, but Knowyourself, you crack me up!  I am all over being a naughty bitch when it comes to sarcasim and such,  but like Jenny said, hating Bush doesn't really do anything, though I think you like to hate him cause it is fun and it doesn't do any harm to hate someone at a distance like that.

    Right now I am hating that I am sitting at my boyfriends house while we were planning a lobster dinner and he had to go do something for someone he hardly knows just because they asked him too.  So I am resentful that other people, even strangers get to spend more time with him then me, but really, I am not mad at him or them, I am mad at the situation and mad because I am not getting attention. lol!

    Hi Misha!  smile

  27. profile image0
    Zarm Nefilinposted 15 years ago

    Hatred in my experience preserves the integrity of opinions and ideas, and the freedom of people.

    If someone is telling me that it is ok to punish sodomy of a homosexual nature with death and I hate the person that is spewing such dogma, that hate can be more than just a feeling should that person ever try to physically hurt say, someone who I know who is homosexual.

    Hate overcomes hate in my book.  This is not correct to say, but in my book if I got a bigger "tank" (hate), than you, you are in trouble.

    Love for me is only good around people who you can express it to who will not try to use it against you.  If I am around someone who I know will try to use my love for them to manipulate me only in certain areas, then I will quite honestly despise them in w/e area they will attempt to do so in, whereas I will love them in the other areas where they do not.  So even amongst people that I am friends with I can despise (i.e hate), some parts of those people that I know I don't like.

    I do not yield and do not submit, on principle.  Why should I?  There is no reason good enough to.  Neither does liquid when it is trapped.  It slowly and surely finds a way out!

    I am still trying to relate to the real world, coming from the microcosm I was in, so it is challenging, and so far I have met a few people who do not try to change me, it is hard to get used to the idea that most people are not the psychological "black holes" I left behind in my "group".

    The only way I will truly learn love is through women, otherwise I am hopeless (lol).  Women friends, Girlfriends, Wife, w/e. 

    Love is something you learn and that grows but not something that is all encompassing.  I truly do not believe one can love and inflictinjury of any sort, verbal or otherwise.  For me the domain of inflicting injury is the domain of Hatred. 

    Any and all tries to inflict injury are the domain of hatred, including ones that could be labeled "love" under the guise "sometimes love is reproaching".  That's bullshit, love never reproaches, love never inflicts injury, EVER.  Only hatred does, and in my book hatred can be good, but love is to be sought after much much more.

    For me this is emotional honesty, because when I sit down to eat and I put a piece of rotten food in mouth I will spit it out in disgust (unless I have a cold lol smile ).  When I see a rotten person I hate them in digust and I can and will despise either the whole person, or parts of the person (certain beliefs).

    This is not the "usual" understanding of hate, but I can assure you it is far from irrational.  The hatred that I feel exists to protect my identity, and as such it serves it's purpose for me.  People may not like that, they may not agree with me, they may even "hate" me for it, but in the end there is not a goddamn thing they can do about it other than kill me for my "hate", and most won't bother because they figure that my hate will only hurt me in the end.  It doesn't hurt me it helps me and keeps me alive and keeps my identity in tact.  I am not a stop or a doormat, I am elusive towards people who want me to change. 

    There is no one on this board who isn't doing some kind of drug who could convince me they hate no one at all.  It's not possible, as hate is simply intensely disliking something.

    I do not subscribe to conventional ways of looking at hate, and I sure as hell do not have a conventional way of looking at love.

    For me if I love someone and that person needs my assistance, then that person will be given the time of day merely by the fact that I love them.  If they ask for more than that then they will be given more than that and I will patiently assist them in a manner that is longsuffering.

    Hatred is something that people in our world today fear the outright acknowledgement of more than anything else. 

    It scares them, it frightens them, it terrifies them to the point where they avoid it at all cost.  I have no problem with Hatred and acknowledging that it is a legitimate feeling that I feel and others feel, and that it is not wrong to embrace at times.

    One thing I have consistently noticed about people in general today is that it is ok to Hate, but it is never ok to call that Hate what it is. 

    This hate must be called "Love" and "Compassion" and "Kindness" and "Toughness".  In reality it is still Hate.

    Hate is what it is, and for those who think hate should be purged well all I can say is that the purging of hatred is the very definition (in my book) of Malice.

    And Malice in my book is always evil unless it is used to directly protect oneself.

    This is my understanding of things, I am no coward, and I yield to no one.

    No One, No system.

    1. profile image0
      sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Zarm,  I am not sure how you can equate Love and Compassion and Kindness as hate?  It goes againts what it is. 

      Whether you believe it or not,  a dislike for someone is not the same as hate, and there are people out there who actually do genuinly care and love All People and Life. 

      I posted yesturday that I hate bad situations, not the people.  I don't know what your old group taught you and did to you, but it messed you up.  (no offense) 

      So hate is good with respect to a situtation that you want to stay far away from and can learn from.  ie:  I do not hate muslims for the things they believe,  I hate the bad things they do.

      Maybe you hate those people that did or made you do awful things,  but knowing that what they were doing was wrong, then would you believe anything that comes out of thier mouths?

      Anyways,  I am not trying to get on a social bandwagon to make you change your mind, no, no actually I am.  IMHO,  because beleiving that no on is capable of loving everyone just is not true. 


  28. SparklingJewel profile image65
    SparklingJewelposted 15 years ago

    E- motion= energy in motion...waves of energy in motion go out to whom ever they are directed at. We are to be responsible for our energy output and intake. Energy is/and affects everyone and everything that is of the natural creation.

    how we learn to "handle"  that energy makes all the difference in the world. just because it is not always seen...it is still felt...even if we don't feel it, it does affect us. Hate matters, love matters.

    1. profile image0
      sandra rinckposted 15 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks Jewels.  smile


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