Tagged: soul Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • hardie karges 1:24 am on October 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , ethics, , Jain, , , , , , soul, Vedanta   

    Buddhism and the long winding path: No soul for me, please, and make that karma ‘lite’… 

    Salvation implies a soul to be saved. I’d prefer some enlightenment, in this lifetime. And that’s a fundamental tenet of Buddhism, of course, the lack of a permanent enduring soul to guide you through the ages, or even a solid existent self to call your own in this lifetime, the basis for egotism and possession, and all the misgivings of misplaced attachments. And if that seems like a significant deviation from the teachings of Christ, then it was even more of a deviation from the early Vedic-inspired teachings of India, including Jainism and what we now call Hinduism. For if the Vedantic Hindus want a Self to unite with a Cosmos, an Atman to unite with a Brahman, then the Jains want to find a soul in everything, every little thing, be it rock, insect or umbrella. It’s not just that everything is alive, but it’s permanent and enduring. The Buddha thought he saw something simpler than all these machinations of overwrought mentality, which are just linguistic conveniences standing up and asking to be counted, when in reality there is really nothing there, just ‘mental formations’ or something like that. After all, if everything has a soul, then what do we do to acknowledge that? The Jain answer was: not much. Just sit, sit, and sit some more. It’ll all go away sooner or later. Every action was possessed of karmas, plural. Now that may seem like a strange definition of karma, but they likely invented the concept, so that’s their right. Others saw it differently, for once the cat of karma was out of the bag, so to speak, then there is no end to it, the generation-jumping karma of retribution and the things we’ll do to avoid it. If religion craves certainty, then this became the Hindu leitmotif, past lives and reincarnation, which, like conspiracy theory, cannot be disproven, so it must be true. But don’t we need some semblance of free will, simply for the dictates of morality and ethics? So I prefer something simpler, ‘karma lite’ if you prefer: Do good and life is good. Do bad and life is bad. That’s karma, actions. You will be rewarded by them, not for them…

     
    • quantumpreceptor 7:08 am on October 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Hardy, good job boiling things down and making them simple enough to live them.

      QP

    • Passport Overused 8:01 am on October 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Great post 😊

    • hardie karges 10:57 am on October 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks

    • Dave Kingsbury 4:41 pm on October 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      You will be rewarded by them, not for them… great insight here, the circle squared perhaps?

    • hardie karges 11:45 pm on October 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Actually I may have modified a quote from the Dalai Lama there, so should give credit, not sure of his exact words. ‘Circle squared’, though: I like that…

  • hardie karges 7:06 am on March 20, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , humiliation, humility, , , soul   

    Humility and the Illusions of Self… 

    Everyone should show humility. No one should be humiliated. And that is more than just linguistic word-play, given that the two words in play have a common root. But the common root is not at issue. At issue is the role of the actor versus that of an external third party, particularly with respect to issues of control and freedom, both political and social. It is a fundamental tenet of Buddhism that ego should be reduced or diminished, to the point of total elimination, since it has no fundamental role in personality, just the illusion of grandeur, to which there is no basis–ever. Moreover, humility is an act of contrition, self-contrition, a submission of oneself to the greater good of society. Humiliation is an act of violence, designed to inflict damage on another, and that is not polite, to say the least. Politeness is a dying art…

     
  • hardie karges 7:42 am on January 27, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , metaphysical, , , , soul, universe   

    Buddhism 202: Does Mind = Self = Soul ? 

    IMG_2747Yes, I’m talking about that theoretical ghost in each of our machines. So the first time a human being saw his reflection in still water must have been incredible, our hero unbelieving, disbelieving, unsure if what’s he’s seeing is really him, himself, and so now aware of self, for maybe the first time, previously only aware of everything other…

    Now whether our hero had language at this point is unknown, but whatever it was, it probably wasn’t much, bunch o’ nouns and maybe a few verbs, an adjective or two like special sauce, maybe even an adverb for a side garnish. But our hero must’ve looked like Groucho Marx, sans cigar, or maybe even Marcel Marceau, bluffing and feinting and miming himself in the mirror, trying to test whether it’s really real or not… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 6:30 am on September 16, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , soul,   

    Buddhism is not about getting your groove on; it’s all about… 

    img_0545Control, unwavering control, of yourself, or even better: non-self, if you can manage it, easy enough but for the vicissitudes of will, that one part of the (s)kandhas that escapes easy categorization and refuses to fall blindly into place as but one of the ‘heaps’ that comprise our personalities and personas and persons that we oftentimes think of as ‘self’, or ‘selves’ if you’re bi-polar, or even ‘soul’ if you have long-term plans, or God forbid ‘ego’ if you can think of little else…

    But ‘will’ or ‘volition’ is right there listed alongside the rest of the heap of verbs-turned-nouns that define us in an act of unholy reification, feeling and form and perception and consciousness, only one a true noun, and that an abstract one, all the rest verbs with regular jobs, turned noun, so more than fleeting fancies, all except will, which needs no linguistic crutch-like suffix ‘-ness’ or ‘-tion’ to lean on, or even the gerundive ‘-ing’ to skate by on all fours… (More …)

     
    • Dave Kingsbury 10:30 am on September 19, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Encouraging piece for one who, like myself, is very language-oriented. Nothing wrong with being wedded to words, of course, as long as one can cut oneself adrift to float upon an ocean of unknowing. Cripes, did I just say that out loud?

      • hardie karges 8:11 pm on September 19, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Haha, yes, I’m conflicted over the role of language, On the one hand, I love it, and on the other hand, narratives get stuck and clog our minds, pop music the most obvious example, though no problem with jazz. I think the cure is to think more visually more often and reserve language for more creative efforts, so less boring tedious language, just the good stuff…

        • Dave Kingsbury 1:34 am on September 20, 2018 Permalink

          I think the notion of getting stuck is a fruitful one – bit like a vinyl record stylus that just needs a nudge once in a while. Banal pop lyrics, advertising and political slogans – all examples of when words go bad. Music and art a possible cure – and waiting for the right words to come. 🙂

  • hardie karges 7:11 am on September 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Noble Truths, , , , soul   

    Buddhism’s Noble Truths: La Vie Est Magnifique, Sois Toi-Meme–NOT… 

    img_2116“Life is magnificent; be yourself.” These words are taken straight from a T-shirt, so hardly authoritative, but I don’t think any phrase could better demonstrate the differences between East and West, the West being something of a personality cult of ones own self, while the East—Buddhism, at least—denies the existence of a self entirely…

    That doctrine of ‘no self’, anatta, translates to us most easily as ‘no ego’, something we are very familiar with, but in fact also refers to the idea of a transmigrating soul, or any permanent self, one that in Asian religious traditions is usually envisioned as forever returning, though a similarly permanent soul is envisioned in Western traditions on a one-way trip up there or down there… (More …)

     
    • davekingsbury 2:57 pm on September 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      As always you tread a distinctive personal path through the subject, bringing it sharply to life. A great contribution to the great and, as you say, urgent debate!

      • hardie karges 5:29 pm on September 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Remember the old Chambers Brothers’ song ‘Time Has Come Today’ (don’t know if that one made it to the UK or not)? Tick tock tick tock…

        • davekingsbury 12:25 am on September 12, 2017 Permalink

          Know it well … Now the time has come / There are things to realize … it behoves us all to go on thinking rather than just turning off and going with the flow – which is not to decry the meditative path!

        • hardie karges 6:35 pm on September 12, 2017 Permalink

          🙂 No, thinking is not a ‘defilement’ in my Buddhism…

        • davekingsbury 1:08 am on September 13, 2017 Permalink

          It is very evident through all your writings. 🙂

  • hardie karges 3:19 pm on July 5, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , soul   

    Souls for Sale: the Price of Admission… 

    Hubble pic

    Hubble pic

    I realize now my major fault in this world: I want everything to work out, and refuse to believe that it won’t, or it can’t, woulda coulda shoulda if I had my way, equals a world without evil and a heaven without conditions, without terms or even definitions, depends on expectations, hard to believe that there’s someone I can’t get along with or a gadget without a price tag, a movie without laugh lines or TV without sight gags…

    it will take a miracle, though, at full price with no coupons, for this half-baked society of half-breeds and half-asses with a half-life of a generation and halftime at dark-something: thirty to pull out of its malaise with dignity intact as a matter-of-fact and as a matter of dead men walking, that’s us, without prayers or preconditions, stumbling blindly through the darkness of ignorance and fear without so much as a clue as to what the future beckons… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 10:04 am on March 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: body, , , Death Cab for Cutie, , She and Him, soul, Zooey Deschanel   

    Religion Meets Politics; Body Meets Soul: Capitalism is the Past; Buddhism is the Future… 

    Huh? What? Is this guy illiterate? Why is he comparing apples and oranges while alluding to bananas under the influence of ananas (pineapples), knowing all the while that the only fruit that can cure his disease are cherries and sometimes cranberries? (Orange you glad I didn’t venture into tropical fruits whose names are only known through vague inference and oblique reference and bad translations like jack-fruits and custard apples and the alligator pears of a previous era?)

    Surely this is the greatest travesty of language competence since half-decent actress Zooey Deschanel and that other guy with a letter for a first name decided to call their musical duo ‘She and Him’, knowing all the while that one pronoun was nominative and the other accusative, without even considering the political implications of a feminine subject getting all on-top transitive and doing it to a masculine object, sure payback’s a b*tch, a batch of contradictions, but really his guitar-playing’s not half-bad and her only musical background is the title role in a season of ‘Death Cab for Cutie’ and the best line she ever had in a movie was “Penis!” in that flick with Joseph Gordon-Levitt. But I digress.

    I mean, you can’t just inter-mix religion and politics for Sunday entertainment, now, can you, despite or because of the fact that it’s prohibited? Can you? “Never talk religion and politics” is an adage as old as America itself and the mixing of the two is an affront to the separation of Church and State that lies at the heart of our dysfunctional system of government, isn’t it? Why, yes; dysfunctional, that is…

    Everything’s different now. Everything is a caricature of itself, and nothing is sacred anymore. Our Western and American values are up for grabs and subject to reinterpretation. Our freedoms have degenerated into licentiousness, and our liberties have lost their licenses. Our paradigms have shifted and our grounds have been re-sifted. Religion has nothing to do with church anymore and politics has nothing to do with government. Work is not all about money anymore and life is all about quality and not quantity. The merger of politics and religion does not signal theocracy. It signals maturity.

    Capitalism must die, pool sharks notwithstanding. Its continuation threatens the planet and society. It doesn’t have to end overnight, but the sooner the better: no more booms and crashes, no more zooms and clashes. I’m not talking about free enterprise, mind you. That’s different. That’s sacred. Capitalism is a perversion of it, most likely originated in the extension of credit, and the various packaging and re-packing that comes and goes with that.

    If that makes me a Communist, then so be it. I prefer ‘Buddhist’; yes, that’s no typo. It’s no accident that some of the most successful Communist countries had a prior history of Buddhism. Even today the line is blurred—in China, Vietnam, Laos, Burma and elsewhere. But I’m not talking about totalitarian dictatorships. I’m talking about shared spaces and shared societies, not shares of common stock. The only common stock I care about is DNA handed down in re-stacked decks, hands shuffled and re-shuffled for hybrid vigor and species survival.

    If religions must go through the phases of Islam, Christianity, and Buddhism (in no certain order) as lives must go through the phases of youth, middle age and ‘seniority’ = discipline, love and wisdom, then so, too, must societies go through the political phases of dictatorship, democracy and socialism both in their political and economic applications (‘apps’ for short). But the order is not ordered and the ‘roll-out’ is confusing. Silly phases must be gone through (passive voice intentional) and ch-ch-changes must occur in fields and screens of red, blue and green. Stay tuned…

     
c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel