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Re: I want to act out, but I'm not very good at it

Posted by Willful on May 29, 2010, at 23:00:36

In reply to Re: I want to act out, but I'm not very good at it, posted by sigismund on May 29, 2010, at 19:58:53

Buddhism, at least in the version that I've had contact with, doesn't say the self doesn't exist at all, at least in any simple sense. It suggests that the self is much more fluid, and indefinite than we normally consider it. It involves an ongoing presence to whatever you feel, or are aware of-- in the moment, although there is also a sense of continuity over time that you also feel. The continuity is not of a stable, unchanging self, but one that is malleable, adaptable, and varied. At one moment, you may experience yourself as angry, or powerful, or you may experience yourself in other ways at other times.

I don't think people take refuge in an idea of nothingness or of no-self. They take refuge in awareness and presence to and in the moment-- of whatever they are experiencing-- and they also find refuge in practicing according to the the teachings of the Buddha (or those of his teachings that were written down centuries after his life) and in the wisdom of the the understandings of it that have developed over time. Also there is refuge in the sangha, or community of those who also are practicing these teachings and attempting to live in a way consistent with them.

There isn't a contradiction between the idea of suffering and the idea of a presence and awareness-- or of the ability of these things to relieve suffering, even if there is pain. If you think of suffering that those aspects of consciousness that are added by the way we think of painful things in life-- those beliefs and attitudes and thoughts that magnify and revisit pain on onself--you can see that buddhism offers to relieve suffering, but not to eliminate pain, which is an inevitable part of life.

At least that's what I've heard experienced people say.





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