Ten Questions - Buddha - Buddhism

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by Marie888, Mar 16, 2011.

  1. Marie888
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    Marie888 † † †

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    Found this article and wonder if Buddhists have answers and how you would answer. I know they can't answer for Buddha himself specifically, but perhaps someone can answer in their understanding.

    Ten Questions I'd Ask If I Could Interview Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha) Today
    BUDDHISM - Questions I Would Ask Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha) - ChristianAnswers.Net


    Question #3 & #9 would probably be my first questions on these if Buddha was still alive:

    3
    9

    .
     
  2. Sky Dancer
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    First question. Prior to the life of Shakyamuni Buddha, the Buddha of our time, there were previous buddhas. Also, Buddhist teaching is that we have all had countless lifetimes. We will continue to incarnate in samsara until we are completely liberated. All beings will eventually be completely liberated.

    Second question. The Dalai Lama says that every human being has the potential to create happiness. It is taught that suffering is created by grasping (desire). We want things and we don't always get what we want, so we suffer. We also get things we don't want and we suffer.

    It's not that we try and resist attachment. As human beings, we can't help ourselves with that. What we can do is increase our love. For example, love is the wish for another to be happy. It is NOT the neurotic attachment of romantic love that holds that we love this person because he or she satisifies our needs. If we truly love someone, then we can let them go if someone else would make them happier.

    It's a strong practice. Human beings are a mix of qualites, some love and some attachment.
     
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  3. emilynghiem
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    emilynghiem Constitutionalist Supporting Member

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    The second question is easier to clarify.

    Buddha's teachings are not about rejecting desire, but not becoming attached to FALSE material desire as in "coveting" that which is not naturally ours. This is similar to Christian teachings about not being of the world, not clinging to material rewards or wealth to the point we lose our spiritual peace and life. He who gives up his life shall find it, he who clings to it shall lose it.

    If Buddha were teaching to "strive" to avoid desire, that would contradict Buddha's teachings against striving! The middle way is about letting go, neither clinging or seeking extreme happiness that becomes out of balance and unnatural, nor seeking extreme suffering or avoidance of happiness to prevent forming attachment as that is also unnatural.

    As for the first question, Buddha's teachings themselves are not the only way.
    But the key step of "letting go" and emptying ourselves of material attachments and biases and perceptions "IS" universal to all people in the path to receiving truth or wisdom. As one monk said you can practice Buddhism and be Jewish, or Christian, atheist or have no beliefs at all. It is not the only way but it applies to all ways, as part of the spiritual learning process to maturity.

    Buddha may serve as a primary example or stage in his lineage of letting go completely in order to receive truth. (Just as Moses was a key figure in the Judeo-Christian lineage of "giving the Scriptural laws" that are fulfilled later in Christ Jesus). But all people can do this step, regardless which path we are on.

    So it is a universal truth, but also applies relatively to all people of all followings.

    As for how can all souls be saved that came before Buddha or Jesus, the same question can be asked of both followings.

    I believe that Jesus' ascension transcends all time and space.
    So that when future generations accept salvation and grace through Christ Jesus, and these prayers are applied to all past generations before us and future generations after us, then the cycle of sin and suffering is broken. The souls are saved even though the sins and karma that were not given to Christ before, may manifest later in future generations until all this karma or sin is forgiven and cleansed from humanity.

    In Christianity there is teaching of generational curses or sins of past generations revisited upon the fourth and fifth generations. In Buddhism there is teaching of past life karma that if it is not resolved is incarnated again and affects future soul-mates or relations or whole generations.

    The cycle is broken by letting go and not attaching ourselves to the patterns of retribution and depending on worldly rewards or conditions. By letting go, by forgiving collectively where Christ Jesus is the center that joins all humanity as one conscience, then we receive salvation and the healing process is connected over all time and space.

    All these things we see, even the stages of anger grief and suffering, are part of the stages of the cycle breaking and leading to recovery and healing. This is the spiritual peace that is taught in both Buddhism and Christianity. By opening ourselves to receive perfect Wisdom and Compassion, living in the spirit of Truth and Love.

    This requires both Letting go in the mind and forgiveness in the heart.
    Both the teachings in Buddhism and Christianity are true, and lead to this path of spiritual peace in the Kingdom of God, on earth as it is in heaven.
     
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    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011
  4. Sky Dancer
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    I don't feel that Buddhist and Christian teachings should be mixed. The teachings may sometimes complement each other. I think Christians should stay Christian and Buddhists stay Buddhist.

    If you're Christian, be the best Christian you can be. If you're a Buddhist, be the best Buddhist you can be.
     
  5. Marie888
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    delete post, I messed up the quote part
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011
  6. Marie888
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    Ok, thank you for the reply - I didn't know there were previous Buddhas.

    In regard to suffering, what about people who have diseases, or are blind, deaf, in a wheelchair, have chronic body pain, etc? None of those have anything to do with desire, so how do Buddists deal with those types of suffering?


    .
     
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    Buddhists deal with the suffering of diseases the same way Christians do, with kindness. There is a certain amount of suffering inherent in human existence. There is suffering in birth, aging, sickness and dying.

    There is a teaching called the Four Noble Truths which is about suffering, the causes of suffering, the cessation of suffering, and the path that leads to the cessation of suffering.

    It's the first Buddhist teaching I ever heard and is a part of my story of why I became a Buddhist.
     
  8. Marie888
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    Thank you also for your reply. I realize this topic is about Buddism, but you said something at the end which I'd like to ask more about please. I understand that you yourself believe that Buddhism and Christianity are true. I just want to say that I don't believe that myself personaly, and I wanted to share with you why - because of what Jesus said.

    Have you by chance yet seen the following verses of what Jesus said?.. Either way, how do you combine the two after what Jesus said?



    So how do you correlate those verses with your belief and/or statement that Christianity and Buddhism is truth?

    .
     
  9. Marie888
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    Ok thank you. But, no I mean, (and sorry, this may be going over my head) but if Buddhists believe that "suffering" comes from "desire or coveting", how does Buddism explain the "suffering" that comes about from things like that? Or suffering that comes about from other things too? From other peoples wrong doings to others? You know what I mean? If someone was raped, emotionally or sexually or abused, etc. Those types of sufferings are real actual sufferings where the person was a victim, right? A victim of other people's wrong doings. Do you know what I'm asking? I'm trying to word it right, but may not be coming out correctly..lol, sorry.

    .
     
  10. emilynghiem
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    Hi Marie: There are several different ways I could explain this
    1. first of all, I believe that Jesus fulfills both the natural laws of man and the divine laws of God. He governs both the believers under church laws and the gentiles under natural laws as two folds of the one flock. In Christ there are no Jews or gentiles but all are one, all fulfilled in Christ Jesus. I believe the Buddhists teach and follow natural laws, as do the Constitutionalists and atheists/nontheist/scientists who study and understand truth through science etc. So all these truths and laws are equally fulfilled in the spirit of truth that is established in Christ Jesus.
    2. Also about the narrow road, if you look where we agree on truth, that sets us free from division and strife. Anyone can take parts of this or that, and cling to where we disagree and remain divided. The whole world has been to war over this, the path of destruction, of I'm right you're wrong, destroys relations and damages generation after generation.
    But if we seek agreement on truth in Christ Jesus, then we are made one.
    The Bible says that the different tribes will come together in Christ.
    That every knee shall bow and "tongue shall confess.
    Well all the different religious tribes are like different languages for the laws.
    And Jesus is Lord of all lords, authority over all laws, natural or divine, on earth or heaven.
    See Colossians 1:16 where all authorities visible or invisible are created by and given to God for his purposes.
    So Jesus is Lord of all.
    3. for an analogy I would compare the Constitutional laws that all the states are under, and the local state laws that differ by region or population. We may all submit to the "law of the land" that governs us all, but still submit to our local laws governing our lives.
    that does not contradict there being one law or one government for all.
    The different states, or even different levels of law, do not have to be in conflict with each other.

    And in Christ Jesus, I believe any conflicts can be corrected so truth and justice are established, no matter what law you are trying to enforce or live by.

    The spirit of "restorative justice" allows for forgiveness and correction, both grace as well as accountability and even restitution in order to restore good faith relations with all people. So that is the spirit of Christ Jesus I believe fulfills every law and every path.

    I am a Constitutionalist also. Probably that more than a Buddhist.
    I believe that people are the government, by taking the laws to heart by conscience and enforcing these ourselves with shared responsibility, the same way Christianity teaches that people are the church, or the body of Christ united under one law.

    I believe the natural laws are harmonious with the divine laws, though these are separate audiences and realms of jurisdiction and representation.

    Because Jesus is both man and God he fulfills both and joins these in perfect peace and justice, being the one mediator that allows the establishment of the spirit of truth that sets us free from division and strife.

    4. As for Buddhism, it has been explained this way that the same way Moses brought the divine laws and established them before Jesus came to fulfill them, then Buddha presented the teachings on the natural laws of cause and effect and where these were heading, which are fulfilled later when humanity reaches spiritual maturity. So the same way we respect Moses coming before Jesus, without conflict, then Buddha can also bring teachings that do not conflict with Jesus.

    Again these laws are given differently. The divine laws are given to Jews, Muslisms, Christians etc. while the natural laws are embraced by nontheists secular gentiles secular humanists, etc. They do not have to be in conflict which can all be resolved. The truth by definition would correct anything that is contrary to it.

    Buddhist teachings are based on Wisdom and Compassion.
    Christianity on Truth and Love. You can see the parallels right there.
    When all th eother laws are followed in this spirit, then all is made right.
    I believe that is what it means for us to reach agreement in Christ Jesus
    and to realize full spiritual maturity and heavenly peace or the Kingdom of God.
     
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    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011

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