Innate enlightenment sans Buddhism?

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by Anthony Anthony 3 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #42333


    Has anyone read anything on this page:

    It has a Buddhist-y feel to it but seems not to mention anything about Buddhism proper. If I had to guess I would say the authors have some Zen background but it doesn’t say. I have studied Zen for over a decade and so some of the ideas sounded familiar to me but this is the first I’ve seen such ideas presented with zero Buddhism. It’s possible I am interpreting non Buddhist ideas through a Zen lens, though, maybe it’s just me.


    • This topic was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by  Fry.
    • This topic was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by  Fry.
    • This topic was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by  Fry.
  • #42357
    Jennifer Hawkins
    Jennifer Hawkins

    Hi Fry

    I haven’t checked out that website deeply, but I did see an earlier version of this post. I just wanted to say that ideas like intrinsic Buddha-nature (if you will) are definitely part of Zen (Dogen), and that websites like this are probably written by people who have that influence, but others as well, and are wanting to work on things completely independently from official teachers or schools or overall systems – to reinvent the wheel for themselves. I think it’s possible to reinvent the wheel (that’s part of the idea of Pacceka Buddhas found in many different lines of Buddhism – that some people get there on their own without direct interaction with what became known as Buddhism, that multiple roads can lead to the same end). I think it’s fine to reinvent it (usually).

    Anyways, the easiest way here might be to contact whoever puts the site up and to ask about their background (if it’s not already somewhere on the site).

  • #42375

    Here’s what this website implies

    1) your human brain makes enlightenment seem out of reach because it gums up your life with complexities that don’t make you happy
    2) primates aren’t concerned with the BS that we are because their brains have only evolved so far, which doesn’t enable them to engage in temporal or existential worrying
    3) your true self is your monkey mind, your true self is your monkey behavior
    4) lay down and let your buddies groom you. it’s awesome.

    Really, the stuff on there is in many ways a simplified take on the 4 noble truths and the eightfold path. Nothing novel except that they don’t mention dharma or buddhism.

  • #42379

    steve mareno

    As a long time Zen Buddhist myself, I agree with Scott that they have stripped the Buddhism out of the practice, but I disagree with the premise that we are already enlightened. If only it were that simple! Let me now seemingly contradict myself. A few Zen teachers have come up with this idea, and in a sense its true. We ARE already enlightened, but we are not aware of that enlightenment. That awareness is the key, and it is very, very important. So we practice to achieve it. And even that statement is not true, because no one is ever enlightened…… enlightenment is just the activity of enlightenment, not of the individual. It is the activity of the dharma……. that which is. If “I” am operating, then it most certainly ain’t the dharma, it’s my ego and habits, my likes and dislikes, my experiences and logic. Won’t work.

    I think we still should follow the eightfold Buddhist path, and a sangha, the dharma and a teacher are still relevant and helpful for most people. We touched on this subject just last night with my Rinzai Zen discussion group after our evening sit. Initially we were discussing kensho, a sudden waking up or flash into clarity. One can have a variety of kenshos. The “aha” moments. W/o regular sitting, they just sorta dissipate, but the discipline of daily sits deepens the experience. This is why people go on retreats for days at a time, and often for much longer. Practice is just that, practice.

    As my teacher said, how badly do you want this? If you are OK with just calming down through meditation and going along pretty much like normal, that’s easy enough. But if you really want to wake up, you put your nose to the grindstone and make the effort every moment.

    I mentioned that kensho could not be enlightenment, and that’s when the teacher made the comment that no one being is ever enlightened. It rang true for me.

  • #42473

    What is Enlightenment?
    Simply the philosophical understanding that all is one.

    Stop seeing enlightenment as something to win, as though you are an independent self who must grasp something that you aren’t already.

    Since there is no you, there is no other. Nothing to seize.

    Simply understanding what is.

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