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View Diary: I sucked at Buddhism last night (257 comments)

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  •  Actually I take that back (0+ / 0-)

    I don't think you understand what "acceptance" means in Buddhist terms.  Acceptance doesn't result in inaction.

    •  That's why I think it can be dangerous (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      congenitalefty, peregrine kate

      Because the concept is a little esoteric and, if misinterpreted, could result in the wrong kind of acceptance. In theory it all works beautifully. As one meditates one becomes wiser and gradually accepts things as they truly are. At the same time, one opens one's heart and becomes empathetic to the suffering of all beings and spontaneously becomes activated to do what must be done to alleviate the suffering that one has become aware of in the world.

      In practice, one becomes a little less neurotic and goes on with a way of living that may be no more effective in alleviating suffering in the world beyond one's self. Perhaps I'm too cynical, but that's the way it feels at the moment.

      The opposite of life is not death, but indifference. -- Jaki Gefjon (A.A.Attanasio)

      by Max Wyvern on Thu May 02, 2013 at 01:19:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think it's the opposite. The more you experience (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        84thProblem, Creosote, GreenMother

        how your own thinking works, the more indifferent you become to your own "suffering" that is dragging your own mind around like a rag doll on the ground, and the more capable you are of "interbeing" with others in a way that relieves their suffering rather than increasing it.

        An important aspect of the teaching is that expressed in "Chop wood, carry water".  Being enlightened doesn't mean being liberated from material life completely.  It does change the definitions and priorities of life.
        There is also the sutra on the proper way to handle a snake, which compares the teachings to a dangerous snake which must be handled correctly in order for one to not "be bitten".

        You can't make this stuff up.

        by David54 on Thu May 02, 2013 at 01:47:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  One of the things I like about Hayes and (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MeToo, AoT

        others like Batchelor is the way they demystify things like "emptiness" and "acceptance".  Their view is that these concepts have gotten overly "esotericized" (if that is a word) over time.  The more mystical takes on shunyata and nirvana are not without value (although they do need to be taken down a peg IMO), but the demystified ones are good counterbalances and are demonstrably based on the Pali Canon and commentaries thereon (as opposed to what some self-anointed modern teachers imagine).  It's nice to have these ideas explained in ways that make sense here and now rather than being something to be understood only after eons of meditation (and/or when one hangs out a guru shingle ;-).  The Buddha said practice is supposed to be "good at the beginning, good in the middle, good at the end".  Sure it takes effort, but it's not supposed to suck or be a mystery that one has to take on faith from authority.

        "Happiness is the only good. The place to be happy is here. The time to be happy is now. The way to be happy is to make others so." - Robert Ingersoll

        by dackmont on Thu May 02, 2013 at 03:47:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  doesn't sound right (0+ / 0-)

        Sorry, I was away for the weekend.

        Two points
        1) Inaction is also action.  Most people misinterpret "acceptance" as complacency.  "That's just how things are.... so there's nothing you can do about it."
        2) I don't think that you become more wise just because you meditate.  You become more wise because you are introspective and willing to look at what your'e attached to and how that causes you to suffer.  Experience, awareness, honesty and reflection is what creates wisdom.  
        3) Buddhism doesn't neccessarily reduce neuroses.  You're just aware that you're neurotic and understand that component of your personality.  Doing something about your neuroses is a different matter.  It might help you figure out whats causing it but just because you're buddhist doesn't mean all your neuroses go away eventually.

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