(Firstly. I thank everyone for their thought-out replies and contributions. Nana and Dave, I will be following up on those links, much appreciated.)Sam Vega wrote:With a set of ideas derived from a tradition that we accept.
The theists return the compliment, by the way.
This comment by Sam Vega raises an issue that is actually relevant to us: that just as we Buddhists frame other Paths according to our paradigm, so they frame our Path according to theirs. That is one of those seemingly intractable 'chinese puzzles' that I was trying to work through in this topic. Because I can sincerely state that from my personal experience, the Noble Eightfold Path and virtually everything I read in the suttas increasingly makes sense to me; it is found to accord with reality more and more. But a devout Sufi or Hindu yogi might say just the same things about their Paths! As I said before, some of them seem to have a direct experience of Divine Presence, and while we do have our own explanation for that, they will have theirs, too, and it will be more affirming and positive than ours.
David, that's my perspective also, exactly. What I'm doing is questioning my perspective, holding it up for investigation. How much of our conviction is grounded in actual insight, and how much is from regularly studying suttas, with the words and concepts sinking into our heart and mind, and increasingly residing there, and increasingly framing how we view life? Is what we find to be true - our insight - coloured in any way by what we were looking for? Maybe the same thing happens to the Theists - they also find what they were looking for...David Snyder wrote:Buddhism holds that anyone can get to heaven leading a moral life and precepts from any religion, but the ultimate Nibbana is through the Buddhist path.