Spritzophrenia

humour, music, life, sociology. friendly agnostic.

The Dark Side of the Buddha

Posted by spritzophrenia on January 6, 2010

I’m the illest Buddhist you’ve seen
all the ladies wanna meditate with me
I look so serene when I bust a lotus
but i don’t have an ego so I wouldn’t even notice
 

I think of you before I think of myself
that’s probably why people think I’m so chill
But still I’m hell of intense
my clothes have little bells and they smell like incense

Arj Barker in his hilarious “Sickest Buddhist” video, at right

Edit: Here’s a recent post on Buddhist meditation and anatman. September 2011.

Buddhism has attracted me for a long time. Gautama’s faith is seen by many Westerners as a non-faith that can be followed as a philosophy or practice with little reference to gods. This may in fact not be the case, as we’ll see below. The foundation of Buddhism is that life is suffering; it gets worse because we are reborn beyond death and continue to suffer, so we have to escape rebirth somehow. Compassion for others and non-attachment to this world is promoted. If you need it here’s a Western-style introduction to Buddhism and an overview of core teachings.

The Japan-ified Buddhism of “Zen” was trendy in the West. Mainly ‘cos the word Zen sounds cool. I read a fantastic book years ago about Zen and shooting things. Presumably not living things, although I’m not sure if that was made clear. Arrows were involved but I don’t think it was the classic Zen and the Art of Archery.

I do however have intellectual reservations about Buddhism. I think the logical implications of some of its beliefs actually end up being antihuman; life-denying and unliveable [2]. Bottom line, I have no evidence Buddhism is true. Christians for example can point to Y’shua’s (alleged) rising from the dead. It all passes or fails on that one event according to their chief 1st Century apologist which is at least disprovable, and possibly proveable. Mormons can point to US archaeology – which is a massive fail, sadly. I’ve searched in vain for a Buddhist apologetic that goes beyond “I experience this, so it might be true. You should try it.”

Nevertheless, Buddhism has a good rep in the West as a bunch of nice vegetarians in saffron robes who say profound things and spend a lot of time in the lotus position thinking deeply. I have a cynical enough view of humanity that I shouldn’t have bought into the innocence and perfection of its adherents, but like many, I did.

Recently a buddhist monk left a monastary in China, disgusted at the immorality he found there. The story’s had a lot of attention on Chinese blogs.

Some comments on the blog claim the story of the randy monks is a fake. It could indeed be fake, a fairly explicit story about monks indulging in gay sex is rather pornographic after all. If we find ourselves directed to a pay-per-view site in the next instalment I guess we’ll know. But the story could also be true. I’m not capable of investigative journalism on this; speaking Chinese and living in mainland China are pre-requisites I don’t have. A little IP address research might show something, but I’ll let someone else do that.

Sadly, there are other verified stories of monks into sex, drugs and alcohol and a woman who became the tulku (re-incarnated lama), Kalu Rinpoche’s sex slave. I’ve written about Buddhist teaching on drugs previously.

Searching for commentary I found more than I expected about the dark side of the Buddha (see disclaimer, [3] ). Committed Buddhist Sumangalo Khen writes that “Buddhist hypocrites are the worst kind”. He says “One of the most common issues reflecting [Buddhist hypocrisy] would be the way temple committees hate one another, some even try to rob the devotees of their faith and money.” [My edit.]

Angry Buddha

It’s not just the laity. Phony holy men are not approved of in Buddhism. Few Buddhist holy men are as well-known in the West as Tibet’s Dalai Lama. However The Dalai Lama is accused of religious persecution. One site asks Why is the Dalai Lama suppressing religious freedom?, claiming he is using his political power to destroy a centuries-old religious tradition, causing confusion and pain for thousands of Tibetans. I confess, I’ve found the West’s obsession with someone who believes in gods and demons a little strange. Of all the sects of Buddhism the Tibetan and Nepalese forms seem the furthest from the original Dharma to me. I’d suggest Therevada is the closest, but many Buddhists don’t have the view that Buddhism is a once-for-always revelation based on a fixed set of scriptures. It’s allowed to evolve, so to some it’s quite permissable for modern Buddhism to be quite different from its ancient orgins.

An example of Western Buddhist evolution is the idea that Buddhism can be atheist, “devout atheism or godless religion“, as one teacher puts it. Some years ago I read that Gautama wasn’t actually an atheist as such, he simply believed that the Hindu gods of his time were irrelevant to enlightenment. Whether that’s the case, his followers still spend plenty of time on deities, even appearing to deify Gautama himself. BuddhaNet claims there is “no worship of a deity or deification of the Buddha.” I don’t believe this is so. In practice, Buddhist followers spend a significant amount of time on devotion. When they devote themselves to the original Buddha, other buddhas or bodhissatvas it’s not exactly the same as “worship” but I suspect is closer to god-worship than an atheist would like. Hence, in practice, the claim that Buddhism can be an atheistic religion may not be satisfactory for someone who finds any supernaturalism irrational.

There’s an interesting thread on a rationalist site where the originator says “Buddhism (my “religion”) seems to contain the most blatant hypocrites”. Note that many respondents there are not Buddhists. Says one former Buddhist:

Everywhere you get quotes of Einstein and other intellectuals about how scientific, rational, modern Buddhism is, that it is about reality, that karma is just the law of causality, and that rebirth is only the moment to moment transformation, that Buddhism is the religion of the future, or even that it isn’t a religion. 

But then once inside you find out that belief in afterlife (rebirth), karma as a moral retribution law, the omniscience of Buddha, miracles of Buddhas and Bodhisatvas, pure lands, complete obedience to one’s guru, sins (bad karma), gods (“devas”), supernatural powers, etc, are all seen as fundamental beliefs in Buddhism.


Personally I was fooled at first, believing the “advertising”, and once inside, when I saw how things really are, I quit.

Another respondent writes, contra this: “To have a less superstitious take on Buddhism is not to “pretend” that there are no Buddhists with a more superstitious take on Buddhism. There are textual bases and philosophical reasons to disagree with Buddhists who (for one example) think things like rebirth must mean the transmigration of souls. It’s no misrepresentation of Buddhism to have a different view from that. And I’ve seen no pretending that some Buddhists are not superstitious, so I don’t see the insincerity and hypocrisy that you speak of.”

Another quotes supernaturalist texts from Gautama:

This perversion of Buddhism was caused by Alan Watts and others in the Buddhist hippie movement. If you wanted you could also de-mystify Christianity in the same way these hippies perverted Buddhism to fit their agendas.

Most are easily fooled by the way Buddhism is portrayed. I also was fooled until I started reading the actual pali canons (the oldest known Buddhist scriptures) and found it really not much different from other religions with its ghosts, spirits, miracles. There’s ghosts, spirits, demons (Maras), gods (devas), supernormal powers (iddhis), etc…in Buddhism.

Gautama Buddha even said that man who refused to believe in his supernormal powers was a “misguided” man:
“Sariputta, this misguided man Sunakkhatta will never infer of me according to Dhamma: ‘That Blessed One is accomplished, fully enlightened, perfect in true knowledge and conduct, sublime, knower of worlds, incomparable leader of persons to be tamed, teacher of gods and humans, enlightened, blessed.’

“And he will never infer of me according to Dhamma: ‘That Blessed One enjoys the various kinds of supernormal power: having been one, he becomes many; having been many, he becomes one; he appears and vanishes; he goes unhindered through a wall, through an enclosure, through a mountain, as though through space; he dives in and out of the earth as though it were water; he walks on water without sinking as though it were earth; seated cross-legged, he travels in space like a bird; with his hand he touches and strokes the moon and sun so powerful and mighty; he wields bodily mastery even as far as the Brahma-world.’

“And he will never infer of me according to Dhamma: ‘With the divine ear element, which is purified and surpasses the human, that Blessed One hears both kinds of sounds, the heavenly and the human, those that are far as well as near.’

“And he will never infer of me according to Dhamma: ‘That Blessed One encompasses with his own mind the minds of other beings, other persons. He understands a mind affected by lust as affected by lust and a mind unaffected by lust as unaffected by lust; he understands a mind affected by hate as affected by hate and a mind unaffected by hate as unaffected by hate; he understands a mind affected by delusion as affected by delusion and a mind unaffected by delusion as unaffected by delusion; he understands a contracted mind as contracted and a distracted mind as distracted; he understands an exalted mind as exalted and an unexalted mind as unexalted; he understands a surpassed mind as surpassed and an unsurpassed mind as unsurpassed; he understands a concentrated mind as concentrated and an unconcentrated mind as unconcentrated; he understands a liberated mind as liberated and an unliberated mind as unliberated.’ (Maha-sihanada Sutta, 5-8)

The problem of Buddha’s sexism is another example of the evolution of Buddhist thought and practice. In Buddhist Channel Buddhist monk Dr Mettanando Bhikkhu lists some of the restrictive views on women: “Buddhists who are traditionally trained take for granted that [a quotation from the Buddha means] that women are inferior to men”. Some scholars take a nuanced view of sexist attitudes towards women in Buddhism. While acknowledging modern re-interpretations of some texts, Bhikkhu concludes that a traditional reading of Buddha would conclude he was sexist, and that “In Theravada countries, the Buddhist religion has never been in support of human rights and social justice. As long as there is no reformation of the religious education system in Buddhism and the Tripitaka, the religion will remain the biggest obstacle for the development of democracy and social justice in these countries.”

Are some Buddhists racist? Anthony Elmore, a proud black buddhist and Nichiren Shoshu devotee writes “The Buddha Nichiren Daishonin who we consider the ‘True Buddha’ of our modern age writes in the Gosho; “There should be no discrimination between those who propagate ‘Nam Myoho Renge Kyo’. ” He remains committed but believes his organisation is racist towards African-Americans. He comes up with the surprising statement that “the Ancient Buddhists were Africans and history proves this.”

Finally, although I haven’t read all of the content critically and I’m curious as to their agenda, this site alleges all kinds of horrors by Buddhists, including violence. See also Monks with Guns, a book about buddhist violence.

All is not well in the sangha. Wisdom Quarterly, an American Buddhist journal echoes my own belief that we’re all moral hypocrites. I’ve already blogged about Pagans and hypocrisy. I’ll possibly do one about Christian hypocrisy in future although I suspect most of us are already well aware of that. It may be time to meditate before an ancient angry Buddha statue. As an aside, is there something about old religious stuff that makes it art, not kitsch? If you’re really wanting Buddhist kitsch, try the Buddha phone.

Perhaps I shall remain Avidya [4] but I think I’ll continue my interest in Buddhism. I plan to take a meditation course at some point. But I’ll be doing it with my eyes open, no pun intended.

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Any comments?

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listening to Plus-Tech Squeeze Box | (unknown), Pryda | Remember
tful Fascinating video about the ‘Exponential Times’ we live in.

[1] I’m going to start picking a soundtrack for my posts. The idea is the music compliments the writing and I’m a huge music fan. Today’s soundtrack is Departure/Ride My See-Saw by the Moody Blues. It’s more of an ‘OM’-type New Age hippy thing really, but since we in the West are pretty ignorant it will do just nicely for a Buddhist soundtrack. I first heard this when I was around 17, I love it’s abandoned joy in seeking enlightenment. Plus, its The Moody Blues maaaan.

[2] I suppose I should have blogged about logical inconsistencies before making this statement. Briefly, if the goal of Buddhism is to lose your self and become absorbed into the oneness of Nirvana then ultimately one’s own self is of no value. Hence, why have compassion on others? Other people are also of no value, and will eventually become nothing when they achieve Nirvana. This is only a short summary and is criticised by some Buddhists. I don’t have space for the full discussion here, would you like me to write a longer post about these ideas sometime?

[3] Disclaimer: I’m well aware that a non-adherent of a religion usually makes mistakes in emphasis, nuance and understanding when writing about it. My apologies for any factual errors. I feel uncomfortable criticising a spiritual path from the outside so I’m relying on those writing from the inside. I also acknowledge the large number of good, moral buddhists.

[4] Avidya is a Buddhist term for one who is ignorant of spiritual truths.

The Moody Blues | Ride My See-Saw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGEye0b5JXw
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30 Responses to “The Dark Side of the Buddha”

  1. […] The Dark Side of the Buddha […]

  2. I think one could find bad apples within any religion or organization one investigates. That doesn’t really say anything about it’s foundations. Anyway, I’m not really knowledgable about these things, so I shouldn’t yap too much about them. It was an interesting article, although it feels a bit like it’s just a list of the sauciest claims found on the net, no validity checked.

    If you want to discuss any of these issues in more detail, I’m sure there are a bunch of people willing to talk about it at the FreeSangha forums (probably in the Danger Zone section). 🙂

    • Thanks for your reply 🙂

      Au contraire, I’ve tried to only link to reputable sources, like the Independent newspaper, for example. You’ll also note that some of the harshest commentary comes from self-professed Buddhists, not outsiders. Check the links – I’ll happily take down any that are shown to be shonky.

      It’s not pleasant hearing this sort of stuff. I certainly didn’t enjoy writing about it. But I do think facing our demons has value.

      • I won’t go into the Dorje Shugden controversy as I don’t know too much about Tibetan Buddhism, but for example the “Another writer” that critizises the Dalai Lama is not a employed writer for the Buddhist Channel but a viewer that has sent in a letter, regarding an article he had read, voicing his personal opinions. How much of it is true or not I cannot say.

        • On reflection I think you’re right. The letter to the editor adds nothing and contains assertions which I don’t have time to investigate at present, eg “When [The Dalai Lama] was in charge in the 1950s, slavery was prevalent in Tibet, with the rich noblemen and religious institutions owning all the wealth of the country. Serfs had no education and no future.” http://www.buddhistchannel.tv/index.php?id=22,6244,0,0,1,0

          So I’ve removed it from the main article.

  3. Comment repeated here from http://www.freesangha.com/forums/index.php?topic=443.0 with permission

    =======

    Are we supposed to be stunned because some, who label themselves Buddhist, don’t adhere to The Noble Eight Fold Path, and that some monks, priests violate The Vinaya? Karmic consequences are apparent in all such cases.

    The problem is attachment to an ideal which is dependent upon the action of others, when all that is required is our own study, practice, and beneficial contributions to The Sangha. The whole reason for The Vinaya, The Precepts and overseeing supervision of The Sangha is that it was recognised that such human failings were predictable and had to be dealt with according to some reasonable rules and regulations which facillitate an environment conducive to practice.

    Ron-The-Elder

    Buddha recognized that some could not tolerate practice in a community, because of all the distractions and advised moving to solitary practice in the forest wilderness. If the young man who is complaining was sincere regarding his observations and complaints, he was free to flee to the forest to rid himself of his attachments as all of us are.

  4. Jon Trott said

    I’m no expert on Buddhism, but despite the giveaway title would recommend “Beyond Buddhism” by Jerry Yamamoto for a gentle (sometimes very very gentle) critique of Buddhism from a Christian’s viewpoint.

    I am a fairly conservative Christian, but increasingly am restless with the western — aggressive — version of Christianity we too often model for the rest of the world. Christ would have disagreed w/ Buddha on basics, including issues of sin vs. illusion being the root of evil. Buddha found a path, Jesus claimed to BE the path. And so on. That said, however, there is much truth in Buddhism that I think Christians (Thomas Merton being one example) could and maybe have profited from.

  5. benchechesblog said

    I really enjoyed the video. It is great to see other people who are thinking critically about the current credulity in relation to Buddhism and Yoga.

  6. I love the video. Thank you for sharing.

    You said, “…the word Zen sounds cool”
    Agreed, I think it sounds could for the same reason Nietzsche sounds good — the “Z”. And you’ve got to admit, “Z” is a damn cool letter !

    I wrote a short post on the confusing of Zen culture and Japanese culture.

    I agree with you that it is some simple meditation techniques that may be of value in Buddhism — but all the other stuff is as nauseating as any “faith”.

    Good luck finding a course on meditating — but I think we will both always remain “Avidya” !

    Good post, thanks.

  7. […] The Dark Side of the Buddha […]

  8. omatty said

    Re: logical inconsistency

    1. The goal of buddhism is not to “to lose your self and become absorbed into the oneness of Nirvana.” That itself would be a logical inconsistency – if the “self” is “lost” then what is left to be absorbed? Buddhism never talks about anything like “absorption.” The goal of Buddhism is to free oneself from illusions of all sorts, one of these illusions being the notion of a permanent, inherent, independent self. The illusory nature of such a self does not mean that a person does not exist, or that the person’s experiences are value-less. It means that we do not exist in the way we think we exist. An analogy: there is a person who thinks he alone is the smartest person in the world – invested in this identity, he brags, refuses advice from others, and tries to tell everyone else what to do. His illusory sense of self (in fact, he is not the smartest person in the world) causes him suffering and pain, and needs to be abandoned. This doesn’t mean he lacks any identity or consciousness whatsoever, it means he’s enmeshed in a false, deluded identity.

    2. The lack of a permanent, inherent, independent self does not mean that one doesn’t still suffer. The “value” or existence of suffering is not determined upon the presence of a permanent, inherent, independent self. Therefore, just because Buddhism posits that such a self is an illusion does not mean that there are not beings who are enduring suffering. Indeed, it is the first truth of Buddhist teaching: Conditioned existence is suffering.

    3. Therefore, there is no validity in the statement: “then ultimately one’s own self is of no value. Hence, why have compassion on others?” One’s experience of suffering is certainly valuable. Such suffering is the very impetus that lead Gautama to try and find an antidote to his and all other people’s suffering. Given the value of this suffering, and the empathetic understanding that beings want to be free from suffering, there is a reason to have compassion for both one self, and others.

    • Thanks, this is a good reply and have raised points I haven’t thought of. There is a nagging feeling in me that it still doesn’t solve the problem I’ve suggested, something about the difference between perspective and being, but I could be wrong. I will ponder, and might quote your reply as the basis for another post one day.

      Thanks.

  9. Pan said

    The practise of loving-kindness, right thought, right speech, right action and so on would be much more meaningful than the intellectual exploration of Buddhism (not that there is anything wrong with that, per se).

    Experience the joy and peaceful mind that arises from that – like a lotus that rises from the muddy water, your mind will be clear and happy.

    What goes on in the Sangha, political machinations of temple committee members etc are facts – we know they exist and such problems must and will be solved in time – but should these stop you from practising compassion in your everyday life?

    • I think you’re right, compassion still stands as a good virtue. I don’t thank that absolves us from trying to live the rest of the 8fold path without hypocrisy though. It was painful for me to discover this stuff, I don’t take joy in it.

  10. […] The Dark Side of the Buddha […]

  11. […] if we meditate, it would need to be totally divorced from g0ds or the Buddha. I’ve already written about the common misperception in the West that Buddhism is an atheistic religion. One former Buddhist […]

  12. Larry said

    “Gautama Buddha even said that man who refused to beleive in his supernormal powers was a “misguided” man”

    To say that he fully realized means that he has realized what we would call his “God nature”. He has experienced his oneness with what we would call the Creator and the Source. He has understood that which transcends all form, of which includes devas, demons, the soul, reincarnation, etc. If he was a fully enlightened Buddha, then to talk to him would have been like talking to the Creator himself. For the almighty, nothing is impossible. It is delusion that limits us.

    Buddhism denies the existence of a God because of its denial of form but it is definitely not an atheistic religion in the sense that some people think of it.

    • ekka said

      Please, if one really wants to be more cautious, I think this article with title ‘The Dark side of Buddhists’ will be more appropriate.

      Larry,
      I’m agreed that Buddhism is not Atheistic religion. I’m also agree that it is not Theistic either.

      However, I don’t really agree with your phrase that say ‘Buddhism denies the existence of God..’.

      The fact that Buddha didn’t talk or didn’t try to answer questions about God, for most of the time, didn’t meant that he denies the existence of god and also didnt means that he did approved it. It is just that, during his time, people already hold some beliefs about the existence of gods and deities, but, still, they are suffering; so, it is more than obvious that such beliefs couldn’t lead people out of their misery, and it is also clear that, even though God or Gods does exist, he (or they) shouldn’t be the last resort for helping one out of mundane misery, so why bother with those question?.

      Also it is unfair to bring just few sentences from Sunakkhata Sutta here and then make one’s judgment to the whole story and without bringing the whole context into one’s consideration. Ok, I like to ask a few question,
      Do you really know what the Sutta is all about? Who is this Sunakkhatta guy? Why do Buddha called him ‘Misguided’?

      Read the whole story!
      Sunakkhatta Sutta: To Sunakkhatta :
      http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.105.than.html
      Maha-sihanada Sutta: The Great Discourse on the Lion’s Roar :
      http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.012.ntbb.html

      And since when that calling sombody ‘Misguided’ is wrong?
      if you are an Atheist, when you meet with some angry fundamentalist who hold his belief that flying spaghetti is the only path to salvation? what would you call such person?
      would you resist for not calling such person ‘Misguided’?

  13. You don’t need evidence that Buddhist is true because, in it’s purest form, there are no beliefs required. Simply examine your own experience.

    • Amy, thanks. I think I understand what you’re saying, but I am not able to just practice something with no evidence at all that it is true. I am not asking for “proof” as I think that is very difficult, but “reasonable” evidence.

      Otherwise I could just as validly practice any other belief, and let that experience self-validate.

  14. benchechesblog said

    I really like what your doing and the comments you have received are very revealing. I used to go a Buddhist temple in London about 10 years ago and there was a lively discussion about the conflict in Shri Lanka and some of the Buddhist converts were clearly disturbed by the idea that Buddhists were not all behaving like buddhist should. The monk was very funny about it because he changed the subject and said “This reminds me of a story about an Indian man who had converted to Christianity and got very depressed when he came to England and saw what real Christians were like.” What He said was actually quite shocking to many people in the room. He was pointing something very fishy about people’s attitude to Buddhism and to the cultures of Buddhist countries. Correct me if I am wrong but Christ was never a Christian and the Buddha was never a Buddhist. Assumig that they were at least a little bit like the idealized version of themselves that we learn about surely the idea that they did a lot of soul searching and were not satisfied with set answers and questioned their own beliefs are worth thinking about. I think it is really dangerous to project the kinds of fantasies onto tother cultures that many people have towards buddhist cultures. Margret Mead did it with her fantasies about people on tropical islands having more “natural’ “healthy attitudes to sex. It turns out her research was flawed and it was her projection of her desire to have healthier, less judgmental attitudes towards sex than she had developed.
    She needed to find people who embodied the ideal so to give her confidence in it. Not speaking their language very well and taking what people said about their own culture uncritically is Ok when your on holiday and want to have a rest from reality and really enjoy your holiday but it gets in the way of having a real relationship with people from these cultures.

    • Thankyou. I think you’ve identified some important points about culture. I like to hope that we can get ‘beyond’ culture to something spiritually real, but it’s not simple. I do think being honest and truthful about our experiences is a first step. How about you?

  15. benchechesblog said

    I think that being honest is easier if you trust people and people trapped in communities( religious,academic, racial or political) are often deeply paranoid of being excluded from their group and find it very difficult to be honest with themselves about the realities of their situation. I am also pretty sure that a lot of research results are made up to fit a deadline or a conclusion. Only the writer knows if he’s being honest and it is very easy for people with an agenda to reconfigure things to help their version of a story come out. That is why I would advocate a healthy suspicion of the facts,which may well be the idlest of superstitions. After all we don’t view them with the same critical eye as superstitious belief. I am convinced that we are basically rationalizing animals much more than we are rational animals and that the power of cognitive dissonance as a driver behind what we write and think should not be underestimated. I believe the kind of honesty you are talking about is rooted in a belief in “the truth” as opposed to my truth. I believe in the truth regardless of it being so problematic. Belief in ‘the truth’ allows one to change ones mind about old conclusions and is healthy. That is why my favourite hadith is” An hours study is worth more than a night in prayer” When you consider this is a saying of the prophet Mohammed you wonder how the apples fell so far from the tree. The Buddha is supposed to of said something like “Don’t take other people’s word for things test them against your own experience” As far as spiritually real is concerned I think it is too vague a term. I am not sure if I even like the word spiritual as it separates itself from ordinary everyday life and has to many associations with subjective assertions for me to feel comfortable with. I think all experience and thought are real, and that everyone has uplifting experiences and if that is what you mean by spiritual then I think they are real, just as dreams and hopes are real dreams and hopes and dragons and fairies in story books are real fantasies. I will reserve judgement as to their reality outside of my imagination and story books. A kind of Schrodinger’s cat limbo before we open the box.

    • Thanks for your thoughtful reply. It wasn’t easy for me to publish this stuff, and like i said – I do find many aspects of Buddhism attractive.

      Above all, honesty with self is what I seek.

      I have never heard that Hadith, I like it, thanks.

      Thanks again for your thoughtful response. Please call again 🙂

  16. […] we could say that Buddhism is also a practice that requires no intellectual assent. But is this, in fact, the […]

  17. […] are a couple of quotes from Asma which support my contention that Buddhism as practiced is much more “religious” than many Westerners think: Many of […]

  18. orlando said

    Desire is the root of all suffering. This one noble truth convinced me that I was Buddhist my entire life without knowing it. Upon deep, personal analysis I couldn’t disprove that “noble truth”. This is one of my foundations of Buddhism; foundations which I compiled on my own by reading the pali canon and self reflection. I feel that in Buddhism a man can be an island if founded on virtuous principles. I do not belong to a sangha and have little desire to, except for furthering my meditation. Otherwise I’m content on maintaining my own Buddhist path. If the organization isn’t your thing stay “unorganized”.

  19. webpositer said

    webpositer…

    […]The Dark Side of the Buddha « Spritzophrenia[…]…

  20. DD said

    so you pick up a couple of examples of monks and accuse Buddhist is bad and Buddha is sexim? if Buddha was a sexism how could he made so many Nuns in highest positions? he wasn’t sexism. so first read the Pali Canon and reeducate yourself.

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