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Buddhism: The religious and philosophical system founded by the Buddha Gautama, teaching that all human sorrows arise from desire and can be eradicated by following the disciplines of his eight-fold path. ‘Buddha’ (Sanskrit: enlightened, from budh-’: awake, know, perceive) is the title of the successive teachers, past and future, of Buddhism, especially of its founder, the Indian religious teacher Gautama. Oxford Dictionary

Richard: Contrary to popular belief, Buddhists are not actively pursuing peace-on-earth per se.

According to the Encyclopaedia Britannica, ‘Ultimate Reality’ in Buddhism is called ‘Parinirvana’ (Complete Nirvana) or the freedom of spirit (by whatever name) brought about by release from the body. In the Buddhist analysis of the human condition, delusions of egocentricity and their resultant desires bind humans to a continuous round of rebirths and its consequent ‘dukkha’. It is release from these bonds that constitutes ‘Nirvana’, or the experience of Enlightenment. ‘Nirvana’ – in Buddhist religious thought and spiritual philosophy – is but the initial goal of the mindfulness disciplines and practice in that it signifies the transcendent state of freedom achieved by the extinction of desire and of individual consciousness. That this is only the inaugural objective is very clear to the discerning eye because – while liberation from rebirth does not imply immediate death and thus release into the ‘Ultimate Reality’ – the physical death of a ‘Perfect One’ (an Arhat or a Buddha) does.

Thus while the immediate aim of the Buddhist path is release from the round of phenomenal existence with its inherent suffering by attaining Nirvana (the enlightened state in which the fires of greed, hatred, and ignorance have been quenched), Nirvana is not to be confused with total annihilation because, after attaining Nirvana, the enlightened individual will continue to live, burning off any remaining karma until the state of ‘Final Nirvana’ (Parinirvana) is attained at the moment of physical death. It may be noted that, during the early centuries of Buddhist history, not only were there the three major pilgrimage centres – the place of Mr. Gotama the Sakyan’s birth at Lumbini, the place of his Enlightenment at Bodh Gaya, the Deer Park in Varanasi where he preached his first sermon – but particularly the village of Kusinara, (or Kushinagara) located in the eastern district of Deoria, which is the place of his Parinirvana.

Quite obviously, this is a very self-seeking approach to life on earth ... something that all metaphysical peoples are guilty of. The quest to secure one’s immortality (by whatever name) in some spurious ‘After-Life’ (by whatever name) is unambiguously selfish ... peace-on-earth is readily sacrificed for the supposed continuation of the imagined spirit (by whatever name) after physical death. So much for their humanitarian ideals of peace, goodness, altruism, philanthropy and humaneness. All religious and spiritual and mystical quests amount to nothing more than a self-centred urge to perpetuate oneself for ever and a day. All metaphysicists fall foul of this existential dilemma. They pay lip-service to the notion of self-sacrifice – weeping crocodile tears at noble martyrdom – whilst selfishly pursuing the timeless ‘State of Being’ ... the ‘Deathless State’. The root cause of all the ills of humankind can be sheeted home to this single, basic fact: the overriding importance of the survival of ‘self’ by whatever name.


Richard: The actualist method is a far cry from the Buddhist carefully cultivated ‘mindfulness’ ... the practice of ‘mindfulness’ is a further withdrawal from this actual world than what ‘normal’ people currently experience in the illusionary ‘reality’ of their ‘real world’. All Buddhists (just like Mr. Gotama the Sakyan) do not want to be here – now – as this flesh and blood form, walking and talking and eating and drinking and urinating and defecating and being the universes’ experience of its own infinitude as a reflective and sensate human being. They put immense effort into bringing ‘samsara’ (the endless round of birth and death and rebirth) to an end ... if they liked being here now they would welcome rebirth and delight in being able to be here now again and again as a human being. They just don’t wanna be here (not only not be here now but never, ever again) ... is it not so blatantly obvious (that Mr. Gotama the Sakyan just did not like being here) that you wonder why you never saw his anti-life stance before? How on earth can someone who hates being here so much ever be interested in bringing about peace-on-earth?

In this respect he was just like all the Gurus and God-Men down through the ages ... the whole lot of them were/are anti-life to the core.

Freedom from the Human Condition – Happy and Harmless

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