Author Topic: I almost hate to say it, but ........  (Read 105 times)

Chaz

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I almost hate to say it, but ........
« on: May 27, 2021, 09:25:20 PM »
........... I am, slowly, but surely, becoming a secular Buddhist.

This isn't a matter of choice, to a loss of faith, or a inability to relate to the religious aspects of the path.

It's a matter of evolution.

I'm fine with everything has gone before.  However, having left the comfort of my Colorado sangha, having not found anything as a suitable replacement, and nothing on the horizon, things have changed.  The "religious" aspects of my practice, things that are heavily dependent on a sangha for support, have taken on less importance that in previous years.  I don't do the practices and rituals.  I don't make observances.  I'm still strong with the less religious aspects of the path - sitting meditations in the simplest of forms.

And it's ok.  This is where karma has taken me.

There have been and there still are issues I have with "Secular Buddhism" - things I don't agree with. I'm not fond of the label. However, my practice is becoming more secular than religious.

Go figure?

MarasAndBuddhas

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Re: I almost hate to say it, but ........
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2021, 05:13:16 PM »
Yeah, well, "secular buddhism" is somewhat oxymoronic, yet one doesn't have to label oneself anything in order to practice...

i think all the religious ornaments have the quality of bringing together people in a group, that's their power. If i had to choose any label it would be "confused buddhist", because i just don't have much in the way of "beliefs" except a vague sketch of what is polite and incorrect or impolite and rude.

I've learned a lot from this "global pandemic", yet it has been pretty horrible for my ability to meditate. I resolved recently i'm just going to shorten my time to 10 minutes, we'll how see how that works out.
When thoughts arise, then do all things arise. When thoughts vanish, then do all things vanish.

Chaz

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Re: I almost hate to say it, but ........
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2021, 05:30:20 PM »
"secular buddhism" is somewhat oxymoronic,

That's really true.  Buddhism, at the end of the day IS a religion.  More to it than just that, though.  My Guru calls it "science of the mind" and I agree with that, but it's also religion.  "Secular Buddhism" is like saying "Irreligious Religion".

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yet one doesn't have to label oneself anything in order to practice...

Very true!

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i think all the religious ornaments have the quality of bringing together people in a group, that's their power.

It's a cultural thing - part for the structure of a society.  It aids in identification with the group.  If you look at the material culture of Tibetan Buddhism  - it all has meaning.  And the intent is to convey that.  A Thanka isn't so much an image of a particular being existing somewhere in time and space.  Rather it's a graphic representation of the various qualities and attributes of enlightened being.  This meaning is intended for the community (Sangha) as much as for the individual.


Gibbon

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Re: I almost hate to say it, but ........
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2021, 06:00:40 PM »
In a perverse way I am happy for you, Chaz.  You have been cut off from the physical Sangha yet your determination to practice has not waned.  Keep practicing, good things are coming your way in the future.