Sutra_of_the_Heart of_Perfection of_Wisdom
April 11, 2005 6:03 AM   Subscribe

Teachings of the Dalai Lama: some are available online alongside texts by other Buddhist monks. INDEX.
posted by dfowler (32 comments total)

 

posted by dfowler at 6:03 AM on April 11, 2005


One of my favorite sources for Buddhist texts is Access to Insight, focused on Therevada Buddhism.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:16 AM on April 11, 2005


I hope this will further encourage westerners to grab little snippits of eastern philosophy and share it with me when I become visibly agitated. Be sure to leave out the bits about attachment causing suffering because you sure seem attached to your iPod and bike messenger bag.

And now is as good a time as any to remind folks to replace their "Free Tibet" bumper sticker if it has become too faded. We're almost there, and we couldn't have done it without your traffic patterns.
posted by Mayor Curley at 6:33 AM on April 11, 2005


Yeah, he seems really nice, but the Dalai Lama has some pretty conservative views on homosexuality, masturbation and non-reproductive sex in general.

I don't always like the guy, but John Safran's 'Safran Vs. God' series (scroll about half-way down), was pretty good at sticking the boot into religions that sometimes get a free pass on repression.

If you haven't seen the 'Pope or Dalai Lama quote' survey, it's worth watching.
posted by backOfYourMind at 6:46 AM on April 11, 2005


If the Dalai Lama can love the Chinese, you can love me.

Thanks, boym, that's great.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:52 AM on April 11, 2005


We're almost there, and we couldn't have done it without your traffic patterns.

Someone could use a chill pill.
posted by Rothko at 7:13 AM on April 11, 2005


Someone could use a chill pill.

How about some yoga and a chai, instead? Western medicine just, like, addresses the symptoms what with their chill pills and antibiotics. Look inside yourself and find out why you think that you need the chill pills. You're not agitated because you don't have the chill pills, man. It's because you want them.
posted by Mayor Curley at 8:40 AM on April 11, 2005


Be sure to leave out the bits about attachment causing suffering because you sure seem attached to your iPod and bike messenger bag.

Sounds like someone has mistaken "non-attachment" for "vows of poverty."
posted by dnash at 8:47 AM on April 11, 2005


Sounds like someone has mistaken "non-attachment" for "vows of poverty."

You're right. I'm sorry for that. I'm pretty sure that Tilopa never actually said to abandon all desire. I forgot that stuff in the Mahamudra about "pick and choose the stuff that sounds beautiful and ignore the things that are inconvenient to you." After all, he had a lot of possessions.
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:08 AM on April 11, 2005


Mayor, some people may want to read a bit about Buddhism (Mahayana/Tibetan), so perhaps these links may be of use.

I hope you don't mind that they are posted to Metafilter as an fpp.
posted by dfowler at 9:15 AM on April 11, 2005


I hope you don't mind that they are posted to Metafilter as an fpp.

Not that it matters what I think, but your post is actually pretty awesome. You put a lot of effort into it and it's a neat resource. My comment(s) were to preempt the white bodhisattvas that are bound to show up and shepherd us towards Enlightenment. To judge from what I've been told, it's somewhere near Peet's and the J. Crew store, but I don't want directions.
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:26 AM on April 11, 2005


Gage says that what particularly impressed him was the Dalai Lama's empirical approach. "At one point I asked: 'What if neuroscience comes up with information that directly contradicts Buddhist philosophy?'," says Gage. "The answer was: 'Then we would have to change the philosophy to match the science'."

Now that's an impressive statement for any religious leader to make.
posted by homunculus at 9:28 AM on April 11, 2005


Thanks for clarifying, Mayor. I think I misunderstood you at first. No harm intended.
posted by dfowler at 9:34 AM on April 11, 2005


It's very sweet, this sort of stuff. Like saccharine. Whenever I read Buddhist musings I always feel like I'm paying a brief visit to Happy Bunny Land. It makes a nice change from Planet Real Life but I find I can't stay too long or my teeth start to rot.

"Now, when you recognize that all beings are equal in both their desire for happiness and their right to obtain it, you automatically feel empathy and closeness for them."

That work for you, does it, Dalai L? Well, ain't it great how different people are? See, I don't get that at all. Not even slightly. I can recognize those things about someone and still hate the living piss out of them. I need much, much more than that to feel empathy and closeness to someone. Sorry, dude. Maybe I need a couple more spells as a rat, or something. Ha ha.

Good post, though. A nice collation.
posted by Decani at 9:56 AM on April 11, 2005


I need much, much more than that to feel empathy and closeness to someone.

Well, it helps to be following the Middle Path, or the rest of the teachings are just useless aphorisms. Which is pretty much the point I've been trying to make. But disparaging the whole system (rather than the phony acolytes) is unncessary.

(Hint: no westerner you or I has ever met is really following the Middle Path, whether they have a cool Tibetian hat and drum or not.)
posted by Mayor Curley at 10:10 AM on April 11, 2005


great post, thanks
posted by matteo at 10:20 AM on April 11, 2005


How about some yoga and a chai, instead? Western medicine just, like, addresses the symptoms what with their chill pills and antibiotics. Look inside yourself and find out why you think that you need the chill pills. You're not agitated because you don't have the chill pills, man. It's because you want them.

Just curious, where is your deep-seated, surly bitterness coming from? Kundun wasn't Scorcese's best film, granted, but there's no need to hold a grudge.
posted by AlexReynolds at 10:20 AM on April 11, 2005


Just curious, where is your deep-seated, surly bitterness coming from?

I can only get 74 fucking dharmas and I'm really frustrated.
posted by Mayor Curley at 10:30 AM on April 11, 2005


I hope this will further encourage westerners to grab little snippits of eastern philosophy and share it with me when I become visibly agitated. Be sure to leave out the bits about attachment causing suffering because you sure seem attached to your iPod and bike messenger bag.

Silly arrogant Westerners, with their presuming to know about someone else's culture and all. Why don't they actually try to learn about someone else before they open their condescending mouths?

dfowler: Thanks for the link. And for not pissing all over me.
posted by ToasT at 10:36 AM on April 11, 2005


Mayor Curley,

I am intrigued that you say that "no westerner you or I has ever met is really following the Middle Path" - is this another put down aimed at the white bodhisattvas , or was there something more behind it?

I suppose that one could say that only someone on the threshold of enlightenment could precisely follow the middle path, but surely there are many closely following it? Some of those who I have tried to learn from have certainly seemed fairly close.

[It is fun to wind up the pseudo-buddhists though!]
posted by daveg at 10:41 AM on April 11, 2005


"Now, when you recognize that all beings are equal in both their desire for happiness and their right to obtain it, you automatically feel empathy and closeness for them."

I think this does actually help me. I understand Decani's reaction, and I must admit to feeling plenty of hatred for my fellow human beings at times, but this is generally because I am not really thinking of them as equal to me in terms of their capacity for suffering and joy. I am denying their humanity at some level. I am thinking myself better, my feelings more authentic. Which deep down I know is crap.

For example, the girl who sits next to me at work has been hanging on my last nerve since 9am. I wanted to tell her to go fuck herself earlier. However, when I take a moment to actually think of her as a person, like me, my feelings of hatred and anger start to dissipate. I realize that she's trying to do the best she can. I don't really want to cause her any harm--to actually hurt her, even emotionally, would make me sick--and beyond that, I don't really want to waste my energy on anger. Not trying to say I deserve a medal for this grand act of compassion or anything, but actually making an effort to empathize with people has a practical pay off in many cases.
posted by apis mellifera at 10:45 AM on April 11, 2005


Scanning the Monk
posted by homunculus at 10:55 AM on April 11, 2005


I practise competitive buddhism, but the more I try to win the worse it goes for me. I always lose to guys who don't even know how to keep score....
posted by Floydd at 11:37 AM on April 11, 2005


From the first link:

"I often joke that if you really want to be selfish, you should be very altruistic!"

Dalai, meet Ayn!
posted by kozad at 11:39 AM on April 11, 2005


Floydd: Awesome.

Mayor: 10/10 rage points with bonus points for condescending.
posted by elderling at 1:20 PM on April 11, 2005


with no dis to anyone who follows buddhist beliefs; i can't for the life of me see any reason to listen to the dude.

a group of people raise another person as a human veal and then sit around listening to him saying no more than most people can tell themselves.
someone gave me a dalai lama calendar a year ago and the producers of it couldn't come up with 365 worthwhile quotes.
put him in the real world and see how he does with rent, dental bills and getting to work on time in heavy traffic.

"at the highest tantric level, at the highest esoteric level, you must respect women, every woman"
what, and at the lower levels it isn't a must? just kick their ass into the kitchen to make up some mac and cheese?
posted by emdog at 6:25 PM on April 11, 2005


I am happy to see Metafilter is cross-cultural in its anti-religosity. I thought it was just anti-Christian. ;)
posted by furiousxgeorge at 7:00 PM on April 11, 2005


yeah, we're equal-opportunity assholes
posted by matteo at 4:52 AM on April 12, 2005


Thanks for the links.

For those reacting with anger, who is your anger hurting? Who is it helping?
posted by Outlawyr at 4:56 AM on April 12, 2005


For those reacting with anger, who is your anger hurting? Who is it helping?
posted by Outlawyr


It sure is helping me. I'm sooo kicking ass in this thread. Eat my dust on the Middle Path, losers!!!

Oh, wait. I just blew it again, didn't I....
posted by Floydd at 6:13 AM on April 12, 2005


Tibetans Face New Uncertainty in Exile
posted by homunculus at 12:41 PM on April 12, 2005


I enjoyed Curley's cracks. I consider myself to be learning, and his comments are insightful. His ultimate point, however, "Well, it helps to be following the Middle Path, or the rest of the teachings are just useless aphorisms," is absolute bullshit. And his dismissal of Tibet is depressing.

And now is as good a time as any to remind folks to replace their "Free Tibet" bumper sticker if it has become too faded. We're almost there, and we couldn't have done it without your traffic patterns.

From homunculus' 2nd link:

On March 10, Siim Kallas, Vice-President of the European Commission, released a statement urging Chinese leaders to begin a direct dialogue with the Dalai Lama. “We will, no doubt, continue to pay the greatest attention to the situation in Tibet,” he said, “and to press for conditions which allow the Tibetans to fully exercise their basic political, religious and cultural rights and permit the cultural identity of Tibet to be preserved.”

Where would we be without the awareness campaign? I'm glad it's around.

As usual, fantastic links, homunculus.

For me, Buddhism is a bridge that should be burned once crossed, like any good religion. I like Zen best, because I don't follow proscriptive rules. I am a vegetarian, but not because of any religious dogma, etc.

Thanks, dfowler, for the references. (As a style note, am I the only one who is annoyed by invidividually linked letters in a word? Who am I kidding? Nobody ever writes in posts after a week.)
posted by mrgrimm at 10:24 AM on May 3, 2005


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