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  1. #1
    Senior Member mr.awesome's Avatar
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    Default Buddhism and Love

    So.. ive been studying Buddhism for the past couple months or so. Nothing too intense but i know the basics about it.
    Although my studies have obviously taught me that Buddhism is respect and love oriented,
    I cannot help but feel discouraged towards having committed relationships?
    Maybe im really out of it and have been reading some awful books... but i have just gotten the vibe that although buddha exhibited his loving kindness with no bias or judgement.. His teachings are extremely heavy on having no attachments or desires. [ie a girlfriend, wife, husband, whatever]

    a few pieces of Buddhist teachings/writings

    If one stays too long with friends
    They will soon tire of him;
    Living in such closeness leads to dislike and hate.
    It is but human to expect and demand too much
    When one dwells too long in companionship.
    The flaws of cyclic existence: Relatives at home, enemies, friends and possessions in the world are the causes of worry for the body and mind. Only virtuous actions can benefit others. Therefore, I will not be attached to these ties and I will cast them away as I would a snake in my lap
    Don't give way to heedlessness
    or to intimacy
    with sensual delight--
    for a heedful person,
    absorbed in jhana,
    attains an abundance of ease
    although i know Buddhism teaches we need to pry from our senses and worldly matters.. is such attraction between a man and a woman to be ignored and discouraged as evil hedonistic attachments?


    [not to be rude either but id like your personal opinions moreso than links to websites ]
    my etsy Morphochroma

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    but most people they can't tell.

  2. #2
    Babylon Candle Venom's Avatar
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    Default

    Buddhism is nihilism, dressed up in optimistic clothing...

  3. #3
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    The Monastery and the Noosphere

    Buddhism is part of the monastic tradition where you forego your family and friends for the greater good.

    It is plainly not for everyone as even Saint Paul says it is better to marry than to burn. But for those with the right disposition it frees them for the world.

    And it was this monastic tradition that preserved Ancient Greek and Ancient Greek philosophy in their Scriptoriums.

    And so it was the monastic tradition that gave birth to the Renaissance and the modern world while preserving the spoken traditions of the past - no mean achievement.

    Not all religions have a monastic tradition, but most do. And certainly Buddhism has a long monastic tradition.

    The monastery seems to spring naturally from religion, and is very attractive to those so disposed. However we live in the Attention Economy of Celebrities that worships youth and so today monastic life seems so unnatural. And so the monasteries remain empty.

    But look around you here. On the internet we are disembodied spirits without family or friends who devote ourselves to discussing the greater good.

    So the monastic impulse has left the monasteries and found its home in the noosphere.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ChildoftheProphets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr.awesome View Post
    although i know Buddhism teaches we need to pry from our senses and worldly matters.. is such attraction between a man and a woman to be ignored and discouraged as evil hedonistic attachments?


    [not to be rude either but id like your personal opinions moreso than links to websites ]
    Lol, how about recommended books? (e.g. Buddhist Practice on Western Ground by Harvey Aronson, Ph.D.)

    Anyway, I like to see nonattachment as going to a dance without a date. Once there, you may meet someone you really like and dance with them all night long. Or maybe, you'll meet several people and have a few dances with each. On the other hand, there may be no one there you share a connection with, so you just kick back and relax as a wallflower, drink in hand.

    The important thing is not the number of partners you have, if any, but rather your contentment in the situation as it unfolds.

    This interpretation is not only Buddhist in nature, but Taoist and Christian as well (two worldviews I'm also familiar with).

    Taoists seek to do things spontaneously, as if giving in to the flow of a river that makes their journey as effortless as a smooth-sailing boat.

    The apostle Paul, likewise, has similar advice on this very subject (in I Corinthians 7:8-9, 17, & 25-28):

    Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion. Nevertheless, each one should retain the place in life that the Lord assigned to him and to which God has called him. Are you married? Do not seek a divorce. Are you unmarried? Do not look for a wife. But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.
    Lol, so take your pick--Buddha, Lao Tzu, St. Paul--they can all be easily interepreted to have no problem with marriage in and of itself. Just ask yourself, though, do I have right mindfulness, right intention, and right action, or am I just doing this, consequences and other people be damned?

    Am I living life according to its way, or am I trying to force something that is not natural?

    Has God ordained this for me, or does he have another purpose which I am ignoring?

    Anyway, hope this helps. Take care!

    CotP

    Edit: Just added verses 8-9 to that block of quote (the verses Victor was referring to earlier).
    "In the opening and shutting of heaven's gate, are you able to play the feminine part?" -- Lao Tzu

    "For when the One Great Scorer comes
    To write against your name,
    He marks - not that you won or lost -
    But how you played the Game."
    -- Grantland Rice

    Life is a game, boy. Life is a game that one plays according to the rules. -- from The Catcher in the Rye

    "The only rules that really matter are these: what a man can do, and what a man can't do." -- Jack Sparrow

  5. #5
    a scream in a vortex nanook's Avatar
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    you should probably try to find out something about the principles of descending (agape) and ascending (eros).
    (i dont know the Buddhist terms)

    because love is a perfect circle of both.

    its related to what ChildOfTheProphets said, about being free first, and then going to dance. this is the order of the path. apparently it does not work in the opposite sequence, at least for most practitioners. the circle will not be big enough, if you don't learn to ascent to the top first. and so the descending will be an 'impure' version. meaning your interpretation of lovin would cause lots of pain. it's about how the spirit works, obviously

    it is not an order of society. but naturally to some degree the order of monastic live. you have to separate the path of evolving consciousness from Buddhist philosophy. unfortunately some Buddhists don't get the separation right, themselves. and apparently most of the philosophy is that of someone who is already free, which sort of implies that they do not have a clear philosophy for people who are not free yet and who live an ordinary live. just instructions on how to practice. but i don't really have insight into what Buddhism does NOT have. it may be there, but its not so obvious.

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    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    Buddhism is nihilism, dressed up in optimistic clothing...
    Buddhism is a two and a half thousand year old major world religion, that has existed and continues to exist in a number of countries including the two most populous countries in the world, has "produced" countless enlightened individuals, trains people to sense into their soul, to send parts of their souls out of their body, teaches people how to "remember their past lives", produces saints, trains an "unfettered mind", shows the way to find one's "Original Face", produced zen/chan one of the most intense religious groups in existence, and Tibetan Buddhism the most occult religious group in the world [in my opinion], and Ken Wilber referred to Buddhism as "the most complete of all the wisdom traditions." I fail to see the analogy with some mere philosophical theory.

  7. #7
    a scream in a vortex nanook's Avatar
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    a question that i can not answer my self, is whether the sequence of the ascending path might be biased towards the skills and requirements of the male gender. men tend to be identified with or conscious of the ascending force in their spirit, women tend to be identified with or conscious of the descending force. increasing the depth of the circle and ensuring that none of the forces are sabotaged may require different techniques.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    Buddhism is nihilism, dressed up in optimistic clothing...
    I have read a number of times where high level Tibetan Buddhist lamas, and other advanced Buddhist teachers, point out very definitively that Buddhism is not nihilism. We all have our opinions, and you are entitled to yours, but unless you know as much about Buddhism as a high level lama who publicly teaches it, I'm personally gonna take their informed evaluation over your opinion, and I'd advise that others do the same as well.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr.awesome View Post
    So.. ive been studying Buddhism for the past couple months or so. Nothing too intense but i know the basics about it.
    Although my studies have obviously taught me that Buddhism is respect and love oriented,
    I cannot help but feel discouraged towards having committed relationships?
    Maybe im really out of it and have been reading some awful books... but i have just gotten the vibe that although buddha exhibited his loving kindness with no bias or judgement.. His teachings are extremely heavy on having no attachments or desires. [ie a girlfriend, wife, husband, whatever]

    a few pieces of Buddhist teachings/writings







    although i know Buddhism teaches we need to pry from our senses and worldly matters.. is such attraction between a man and a woman to be ignored and discouraged as evil hedonistic attachments?


    [not to be rude either but id like your personal opinions moreso than links to websites ]
    There are many aspects to Buddhism, and its gets taught or propagated in some pretty different ways/views. So I'm hesitant to say that "Buddhism says/teaches...", nor do I want to elaborate on a variety of different Buddhist schools and their take on things. With all that preface, one point of view is to say Buddhism takes a very "be in the present moment" attitude towards things, and "accept things as they are, with neither attachment nor aversion." That second one is more open to interpretation, and likely to trigger reactions in others ["Are you saying that Buddhism says we shouldn't try to change things, that we should avoid politics, that we should ignore social engagement???"].

    I would say, since you asked for our opinions, having relationships isn't wrong and its definitely part of being human. Non-attachment would come in more along the lines of "accepting people for who they are" instead of trying to change them or wish they were different, and also "being in the current moment" and enjoying your experience right now, instead of living in the past or spending all of your time fantasizing about how the future might be.

  10. #10
    Sniffles
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    The closest Western counterpart to Buddhism is Stoicism, and there's evidence of contact between Buddhist teachers and Stoic scholars in the ancient world.

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