Salvation and Belief

Discussion in 'Abrahamic Religions' started by muhammad_isa, Jul 17, 2019.

  1. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls Staff Member

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    I do read them, but I'm still no closer to understanding you.
    I can't fully understand what you think about how the world came to be here.
     
  2. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls Staff Member

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    An excuse .. mankind is tribal in nature. They are often racist and nationalist.
    This often manifests itself more strongly when their wealth is decreasing.

    The sunni-shia thing is more political than anything else. It all started over leadership.
    Division was basically of a Royal / Republican nature :rolleyes:

    We see a similar situation in Northern Ireland with the Catholics and Protestants
     
  3. My opinion (even perhaps, "conclusion" based upon history) is that allegiance to ANY "sacred" text will lead to schisms, disputes, heretics and orthodox, Inquisitions and Crusades. You can throw "coveting" and "stealing" into the mix, but what does that really change?

    In terms of interpretation, the most nonsense I have ever encountered was of an ardent Protestant of the extreme fundamentalist variety "interpreting" the NT passage where Jesus/Christ says to Peter "this is Peter and upon this rock I shall build my Church" who, evidently not wishing to yield anything to the Catholic Faith and its Popes, explained that after saying "this is Peter" Jesus THEN turned his pointing finger and pointed at Himself"!
     
  4. That I consider that revelation can potentially be found anywhere and thus that no one is "left in darkness" is for me simple to understand. I fail to see any difficulty. I have even quoted a text (!) "The Parable of the Dharma Rain" from the Lotus Sutra that expounds this idea quite eloquently.

    How did the world come to be here?

    Buddhism spends little time, if any, on "beginnings." The relevant text for me is Majjhima Nikaya Sutta (Pali, Sanskrit = Sutra) 63, where the Buddha speaks in great detail of the need to "pull the arrow of suffering out" rather than question how it got there. The full text can be found quite easily on the Net and for me is pretty profound.

    That the world is indeed here is not in dispute.

    EDIT:- for anyone interested I have posted the entire Majjhima Nikaya Sutta 63 on the Buddhist Section as a separate thread.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 20, 2019
  5. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Active Member

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    "As time passes texts get more unlikely to be accurate/reliable."
    Provinance is "endorsed by the Tradition"

    So Hindu Cosmology is the next frontier.

    Kali Yuga (Sanskrit: कलियुग, romanized: kaliyuga, lit. 'age of Kali') in
    Hinduism is the last of the four stages (or ages or yugas) the world goes
    through as part of a 'cycle of yugas' (i.e.Mahayuga) described in the Sanskrit scriptures.[1]

    The other ages are called Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga, and Dvapara Yuga.

    The "Kali" of Kali Yuga means "strife", "discord", "quarrel" or "contention".

    According to Puranic sources,[2] Krishna's departure marks the end of Dvapara Yuga
    and the start of Kali Yuga, which is dated to 17/18 February 3102 BCE.


    According to the Surya Siddhanta, Kali Yuga began at midnight (00:00) on 18 February 3102 BCE.[4]
    This is also considered the date on which Lord Krishna left the earth to return toVaikuntha.[5]
    This information is placed at the temple of Bhalka, the place of this incident (see photo).
    [​IMG]

    Attributes of Kali Yuga[edit]
    Sanatana-Dharma devotees [Hindus] believe that human civilization degenerates spiritually during the Kali Yuga,
    which is referred to as the Dark Age because in it people are as far away as possible from God.

    Sanatana-Dharma often symbolically represents morality (dharma) as an Indian bull.
    Common attributes and consequences are spiritual bankruptcy, mindless hedonism,
    breakdown of all social structure, greed and materialism, unrestricted egotism,
    afflictions and maladies of mind and body. In Satya Yuga, the first stage of development,
    the bull has four legs, but in each age morality is reduced by one quarter.
    By the age of Kali, morality is reduced to only a quarter of that of the golden age,
    so that the bull of Dharma has only one leg.

    References in the Mahabharata
    The Mahabharata War and the decimation of Kauravas thus happened at the "Yuga-Sandhi",
    the point of transition from one yuga to another.

    The scriptures mention Sage Narada to have momentarily intercepted the demon Kali on
    his way to the Earth when Duryodhana was about to be born in order to make him
    an embodiment of arishadvargas and adharma in preparation of the era of decay
    in values and the consequent havoc.


    Prophesied events during the Kali Yuga[edit]
    A discourse by Markandeya in the Mahabharata identifies some of the attributes of Kali Yuga.[20]

    In relation to rulers, it lists:

    • Rulers will become unreasonable: they will levy taxes unfairly.
    • Rulers will no longer see it as their duty to promote spirituality, or to protect their subjects: they will become a danger to the world.
    • People will start migrating, seeking countries where wheat and barley form the staple food source.
    • "At the end of Kali-yuga, when there exist no topics on the subject of God, even at the residences of so-called saints and respectable gentlemen of the three higher varnas (gunaor temperament) and when nothing is known of the techniques of sacrifice, even by word, at that time the Lord will appear as the supreme chastiser." (Srimad-Bhagavatam (2.7)
    With regard to human relationships, Markandeya's discourse says:

    • Avarice and wrath will be common. Humans will openly display animosity towards each other. Ignorance of dharma will occur.
    • People will have thoughts of murder with no justification and will see nothing wrong in that.
    • Lust will be viewed as socially acceptable and sexual intercourse will be seen as the central requirement of life.
    • Sin will increase exponentially, while virtue will fade and cease to flourish.
    • People will become addicted to intoxicating drinks and drugs.
    • Gurus will no longer be respected and their students will attempt to injure them. Their teachings will be insulted, and followers of Kama will wrest control of the mind from all human beings.
    • Women will no longer get married.
    • Brahmins will not be learned or honored, Kshatriyas will not be brave, Vaishyas will not be just in their dealings.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kali_Yuga

    So the historical time line has not been broken in India's Libraries.
     
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  6. Ahanu

    Ahanu Well-Known Member

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    Okay.

    And sustained through conflicting traditions. Shi'i tradition (such as Majlisi's Bihar al-Anwar) is quick to remind us that Twelvers originally believed passages about Ali's successorship were deleted or substituted in the Qur'an and that the real text of the Qur'an is with the Hidden Imam. Today Shi'i scholars say these traditions are not trustworthy. That they use the Qur'an shared by Sunnis too. That they accept Ali's commentary in addition. And what do Sunni scholars often bring up when they attack Shi'i Islam? This very issue.
     
  7. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls Staff Member

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    ..so basically, you don't care how or why we are here?
    How we came to be here is very relevant, as far as I'm concerned.

    If we are conscious of being here in this universe right now,
    what's to say that we won't be conscious of something again, after our death?

    Is there a cosmic force / consciousness that is responsible for everything?
    I personally think that the answer is yes.
    I also observe people behaving in an evil way as well as good.
    Our perspectives differ, depending on our lives and what we follow/ believe..
    Who is being duped, and who is not? I believe in universal / cosmic truth.

    As our opinions all differ, then we can't all be right .. not that anybody can be right about everything :)
     
  8. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls Staff Member

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    We all know that most Abrahamic sects don't agree with each other..
    ..is that a reason to hate other people in itself?
    No .. it's when people stop trusting each other. Sometimes, they might have good reason to.

    At the end of the day, the world is what it is .. what it is destined to be.
    We have to make sense of it .. we need to establish peace .. but we cannot tolerate major evil
     
  9. Arif Ghamiq

    Arif Ghamiq Active Member

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    There has been a lot of effort and hard work put into the Sunni Shi'a conflict - it was more than avoidable.

    There were a lot of claims being made during the first 200 years of After Hijra - some seemed to have valid points to make, while many seemed to come out of nowhere based on nothing. It also seemed for a time that a person could claim anything and snag a few followers.

    A sad thing to me is that there are some theological, Spiritual & Mystical differences between Sunni & Shi'a that are largely ignored and often unheard of - drowned out by Politics.
     
  10. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls Staff Member

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    That as may be .. but what do you think God, the Most High, thinks?
    I would say that he wants us all to "hold on to the rope of G-d and do not separate" :)
     
  11. Arif Ghamiq

    Arif Ghamiq Active Member

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    I think the divisions of the Muslims are un-Islamic
     
  12. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Coveting power over others, in the case of religious authority.

    @Bhaktajan II has a point there.
     
  13. :)

    I am obliged to admit that for the very first time in my short time on this forum that I experienced a sense of frustration, even, alas, anger, when reading your post above. I assume you have indeed read the entire Sutta I posted, and with interest.

    Leaving your own questions and perspectives behind for now, I will seek to expound on my own perspective on the Sutta

    The key is in asking if we wish to live the "holy life", and elsewhere we have (In the Simile of the Heartwood):-

    "So this holy life, bhikkhus, does not have gain, honour, and renown for its benefit, or the attainment of virtue for its benefit, or the attainment of concentration for its benefit, or knowledge and vision for its benefit. But it is this unshakeable deliverance of mind that is the goal of this holy life, its heartwood, and its end.”

    And so "gain" etc is not excluded as such, "renown" is not excluded, "virtue" is not excluded, nor "concentration", "knowledge" or "vision" but, as the zens say, Buddhism enriches no-one. The goal is "unshakeable deliverance of mind."

    Myself, I might well believe that a giant mind is a reasonable description of our Cosmos, that such mind can also be deemed radical freedom, that in reaching the goal of the "Holy Life" I shall share such radical freedom. But such is speculation and from a Buddhist perspective, counter-productive. I might well believe that "I" will continue on in some capacity beyond this current life. Again, from the Buddhist perspective, counter-productive.

    The Sutta speaks of that which is "productive" and it is not to believe a particular text has been definitively revealed by a "wholly other" who nevertheless - and He doesn't have to for He has no actual need of us - seeks our welfare and does not want us to remain in darkness which we would be if He never actually spoke in such a way. If such is your way, so be it. Walk it. I shall "walk" mine.

    But please, do not suggest or ask again whether or not I care.
     
  14. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    The crux of the matter seems to be that elusive concept of consciousness.

    When you say "If we are conscious..." or when you equate cosmic forces with consciousness, what does that actually mean?

    When I look at my consciousness, it is not a unified thing, but a multitude of processes rattling on largely on their own, subject to physiological parameters. Maybe it's different for you, but from where I stand, there's no compelling reason for me to assume that consciousness is exempt from or superior to what we so lightly call "the world" or "the universe".
     
  15. Ahanu

    Ahanu Well-Known Member

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    I agree with muhammad_isa on this one. "If we are aware of being here in this universe right now . . ."

    By consciousness I think he means awareness, the capacity for self-reflection. In other words, how can a part of the whole (our capacity for self-reflection) possess a quality the whole (the universe) lacks? How can inanimate and aimless matter be changed into the opposite of what atheists tell us matter is?

    Yet there's a qualitative gulf between the facts of neurophysiology and your own subjective experience . . .
     
  16. Relevant here, some words of Richard Tarnas:-

    Tarnas sees our basic assumption being that any meaning and purpose the human mind perceives in the universe does not exist intrinsically in the universe but is constructed and projected onto it by the human mind. Tarnas goes on to question this assumption........

    Might not this be the final, most global anthropocentric delusion of all? For is it not an extraordinary act of human hubris - literally a hubris of cosmic proportions - to assume that the exclusive source of ALL MEANING AND PURPOSE IN THE UNIVERSE is ultimately centered in the human mind, which is therefore absolutely unique and special and in this sense superior to the entire cosmos? To assume that the universe utterly lacks.........what we human beings conspicuously possess? To assume that the part somehow radically differs from and transcends the whole?

    (Emphasis is as per Tarnas)


    "When consciousness ends in the skull, how can joy exist?" asks the Blue Cliff Record, a zen compendium of koans.

    "Whoever told people that 'Mind' means thoughts, opinions, ideas, and concepts? Mind means trees, fence posts, tiles and grasses"
    (Dogen)
     
  17. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls Staff Member

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    We seem to be having a problem with communication. I certainly did attempt to read your "suffa" post. I found it steeped in specialist, technical terms.
    I also couldn't determine its relevance to the points I raise. I'm sorry that you are upset and find it difficult to answer my queries in a more straightforward manner. :)

    That is clear. G-d has no actual need of us .. I agree with that.
    However, I do believe that we are the ones in need. Why would G-d create us, and then ignore our plight???

    As to whether you care .. care about what?
     
  18. Ahanu

    Ahanu Well-Known Member

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    I didn't say consciousness was exclusively centered in the human mind. There are definitely other conscious beings out there, I think. If not it's a lot of wasted of space in my opinion. Why would a gardener have such a large garden (the universe) with one fruit (earthlings) on the tree?

    ". . . And among His Signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the living creatures that He has scattered through them" (Qur'an 42.29).
    According to the Qur'an, God says there's life on other planets . . . so do they possess human spirit, the capacity to discover the unknown? Perhaps.

    Trees, fence posts, tiles, and grasses possess their own spirits, but not a human spirit, which, again, has the ability to discover the unknown, so I am not sure what Dogen means by collapsing every distinct category of existence (such as mineral and vegetable) into "Mind" since I see distinct attributes in those existent beings all around me whenever I walk outside.

     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  19. Obviously not deeply enough to know it is a "sutta" rather than a "suffa"......:) Typo?

    As I politely requested you not to ask again about "care" and you now choose to do so, I agree with you - yes, we do have a communication problem.

    If you are interested I will try to explain any "technical" terms you are having trouble with. During my own reading of countless texts, holy or not, inspired by G!d or not, I have often come up against "technical terms". There are now many ways of looking them up, if we are at all interested. Interested in INTER-FAITH dialogue that is
    (obviously, I cannot now use the word care.....:) )

    ("steeped" in technical terms? No, I don't think so, unless my own vocabulary is much much larger than your own)

    EDIT:- reading through, the only technical term I can see is "tathagata" "He who has thus come", an honorific title of the Buddha. As readily available on Wiki, the title signifies that the Buddha is ultimately beyond "all coming and going".
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2019
  20. Hi Ahanu, no, I did not say you did say that about human consciousness. Sorry if I was unclear. I was seeking to supplement what I understood as your own view - which I agreed with - by offering a few quotes.

    (Dogen's thought is complex and often beyond me. But he was certainly not suggesting that tiles, for instance, possess "spirits" distinct from the spirit with which we are "possessed")

    Yes, there does seem to be a communication problem. Unfortunately, I seek to be as clear as I can be.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2019

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