Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Onto Something Grander

I called myself a Buddhist (loosely) for almost a year, but I feel I can't now.  Reading more and more Buddhist texts have informed me that the mystical elements of "orthodox" Buddhism is what the faith more-or-less really is, and Westerners like me find something great in it (some of which is inherent in the faith, some borderline - a tenant or aspect that's open to interpretation - and some of which is constructed in the interpretation of the modern Atheist/Materialist/Progressive who takes a glance at the religion) and want that to be what the Buddha is "really saying" with notions such as reincarnation and karma.  To clarify, I thought that both interpretations were possibly what the Buddha meant, and just like there are western hippies like me who make it more"modern" there are religious fucks who make it more like Christianity and Islam by saying the Buddha was enlightened for aeons (ie is holy and special) rather than someone who merely thought things out honestly and had compassion, which to my knowledge is what the Buddha always claimed. 

It's a shame because there is a lot of good stuff in Buddhism - whether it "is" Buddhism or simply an interpretation of it is a lengthy academic argument that will in its results differ from aspect to aspect as I said earlier - particularly the notion of viewing everyone as caused beings, focusing on alievating suffering, and the eightfold path which is one of the best general guidelines to ethics I've seen.  But there's also far-too much that is immoral or irrational for me to ignore.  Also it does seem to be fundamentally Idealist.

Oh well.  I've always been more of a Epicurean and Cynic, and I'd like to read them before I start my paper on Mill.

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