Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
mfesmith
Posts: 15
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2010 3:47 pm

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by mfesmith » Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:56 pm

suttametta wrote: I understand where you are coming from. It's my opinion. The Pali framework is scientific in my view. I feel the Mahayana invokes psychobabble and pseudoscience to covert its syncretization with Vedism.
This says loads about you as a Western-educated consumer of Asian religions, and very little about the Mahāyāna.

whynotme
Posts: 479
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:52 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by whynotme » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:21 pm

Dan74 wrote: Hi whynotme,

Well my experience of Zen practice is that it is very down to earth and pragmatic - it deals with the now, rather than doctrines and dogmas. For instance I would not ask my teacher about Tathagatagharba or the Bodhisattva ideal unless this was directly relevant to what I was facing in my life right now - a question from the heart rather than waxing lyrical about all these big words like we tend to do here. And if she gave a talk about it, she would relate it very much to our life/practice right now, rather than postulating something as existing, positing views or establishing positions.

My practice has also been very much about the Noble Eightfold Path and in fact my Zen teacher has given talks directly on this subject. I was taught that without living right, meditation is not going to be right - that sila is the basis for practice. Zen practice that I know is also about relating every aspect of our lives back to practice rather than going through the motions. About recognizing how we engage with various aspects of our lives, seeing where the Brahmaviharas/Paramitas are lacking and cultivating them. About being present, facing life squarely and engaging fully - giving of yourself completely to everything you do. This happens gradually as the conceit of self wears off and one naturally comes to serve others rather than gratifying imaginary needs, to act appropriately to the situation.

So I fail to see which part of this is at odds with what the Buddha taught. Sure people can find plenty to criticize within the massive Mahayana corpus, from sectarianism to atman sounding doctrines. But what relevance this actually has to many many Mahayana practitioners out there, is another question entirely.

It sounds like it was directly relevant to Paul's (suttametta) practice, but not at all to mine so far.
Thank you for your clarification, I also knew how mahayana works in real life

Regards
Last edited by whynotme on Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Please stop following me

whynotme
Posts: 479
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:52 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by whynotme » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:33 pm

tiltbillings wrote:In this and in the other thread, I am waiting for those less than thrilled with what is called the Mahayana to show some actual understanding of the history of the collection of schools/movements as well as the various teachings generally grouped together and called the Mahayana. It has been a disappointing and tedious wait.
Actually I don't care about history of mahayana, just like I don't care about history of Christian or Muslim. Even history of Therevada, they are all out of my interest and I only care about history of Nikayas and Vinaya, coz I just want to know which is the true teaching of the Buddha. I am just a truth seeker, not a savant

If you set your standard high, then your disappointment isn't something special. Also, history of those traditions isn't important, bc I just look at their current state and theory. It works like that in science and technology, you don't need to know much about history, you just look at the logic of the current problem.

Regards
Please stop following me

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:45 pm

whynotme wrote:I am just a truth seeker
Of course you are.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

mfesmith
Posts: 15
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2010 3:47 pm

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by mfesmith » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:48 pm

whynotme wrote: It works like that in science and technology, you don't need to know much about history, you just look at the logic of the current problem.
And thus, very important knowledge it lost to the ages, like for example, how to treat ill people when there is no electricity and antibiotics.

whynotme
Posts: 479
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:52 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by whynotme » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:49 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
whynotme wrote:I am just a truth seeker
Of course you are.
No, I just used the word to emphasis the problem. I don't need your recognition and also you can't confirm what I am

Regards
Please stop following me

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:50 pm

whynotme wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
whynotme wrote:I am just a truth seeker
Of course you are.
No, I just used the word to emphasis the problem. I don't need your recognition and also you can't confirm what I am

Regards
You missed the point.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:51 pm

mfesmith wrote:
whynotme wrote: It works like that in science and technology, you don't need to know much about history, you just look at the logic of the current problem.
And thus, very important knowledge it lost to the ages, like for example, how to treat ill people when there is no electricity and antibiotics.
Honestly, Malcolm, this thread is not worth the effort.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

whynotme
Posts: 479
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:52 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by whynotme » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:54 pm

mfesmith wrote:
whynotme wrote: It works like that in science and technology, you don't need to know much about history, you just look at the logic of the current problem.
And thus, very important knowledge it lost to the ages, like for example, how to treat ill people when there is no electricity and antibiotics.
That is another problem, but it isn't related to the scientific method.

Science is the modern term for wise, carefulness, logic, reason which isn't anything bad at all. Without those attributes, everything will be a mess

Regards
Please stop following me

User avatar
manas
Posts: 2454
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:04 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by manas » Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:13 am

Regarding the original posting,

well we had better learn how to accept each other, because if different strands of Buddhism can't get along, I don't see how we can expect the rest of the world to, with their more rigid, theistic religions. We ask Christians, Muslims and Jews to live peacefully together and tolerate each others' differences, and yet I sometimes sense bitterness between Theravada and Mahayana Buddhist practitioners. Is this reasonable?

Anyway, just to reiterate - it is mostly not a problem here on Dhamma Wheel, ime. There is the occasional thread where someone seems to create that division, but mostly, I find that people here prefer to just 'live and let live'.

:anjali:
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

User avatar
Vlcimba
Posts: 48
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:28 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by Vlcimba » Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:02 am

My intention was to try to bring peace between these 2 ranches of Buddhism. Guess it failed . Mod please close this topic. It's pointless to discuss this anymore. A lot of you are now Criticising the mahayahanist hence it makes things worse.
Form is emptiness. Emptiness is form--- Heart sutra

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Similarities of Mahayana and theravada

Post by tiltbillings » Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:32 am

Thank you for trying.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 46 guests