I don't get Buddhism

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Fanman » Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:44 pm

KT,

Hey, I wouldn't mind being right and creating invincible arguments. :D (though I suppose I am a bit more skeptical about how easy those are to create and stricter about what the criteria are)


Ha! I'm satisfied with a good argument or comment that makes sense. For me making sense is the priority. I also like to learn from others here. I don't really try to create invincible arguments, I like being right, but I'm not too concerned about it. I prefer discussion and bouncing points to and fro. If I had the knack of being right the majority of the time and could create invincible arguments, I'd look at publishing my work! In the years I've been using philosophy forums, I've yet to see an argument that was accepted by all forum members and ticked every box required for being a proof. Prismatic believes he has created logical proofs, but I think his arguments are prone to confirmation bias. He's got smarts, but I think he bottle-necks things through his own biases and strict real/not real paradigm of thinking. I think that Phyllo is right in the sense that it is better to debate with Prismatic, rather than ignore him.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Fanman » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:07 pm

Prismatic,

As I had stated the only valid currency in this Philosophical Forum is justified sound argument.
I will always try to throw in justified sound argument and invite counter arguments, if you are incline to it, then we can trade, else its your discretion to ignore.


This is arbitrary and doesn't compute. You will just claim (as you usually do) that my arguments are not sound, and conversely, that yours are (as you usually do). I can do more than what you state here if I choose to, and still be within the purview of philosophy. This is cliche, but with you, I believe the problem is choice. I don't think that you understand the nuances of how choice relates to human behaviour, and the factors which lead to people making them. As an example, you regard theists with almost absolute disdain, but if you understood their choice, you wouldn't. You are more like a theist than you realise, which is ironic.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:31 am

phyllo wrote:
Nope, whatever is stated and repeated must still be justified.
If you don't agree you can offer a counter argument to the above.
I already presented arguments.

- you are mistaken when you associate 'avoidance' and 'desires' with fear.

- you don't have a causal link between subconscious fear of death and the actions of theists.

- you have no way to access the subconscious of all humans or even a particular group of humans

Repetition is only a burden to me, one can always ignore it while they could be a good reminder and refresher to others.
I can ignore you, but then your poor arguments and reasoning may proliferate. They may appear to be true to some people who read them. It's in everyone's interest that I point out the problems with your argument.

I agree the term 'desire' is confusing.
I did not create that term but was trying to improve from someone's bad argument.

Here is my revised argument;

    P1 DNA wise all humans has an inherent instinct to strive to survive with a will-to-live against all odds till inevitable mortality.

    P2 To ensure one survive with the will-to-live one is instinctually driven to avoid death.

    P3 To avoid death, it is instinctual to fear death [subliminally or consciously].

    C4 Therefore to survive with the will-to-live, one will instinctually fear death [subliminally or consciously].

Note my conclusion do not imply the fear of death is the ONLY instinct that is necessary to survive.
My conclusion show instinctual 'the fear of death' is one necessary instinct to avoid death [P2], thus to survive [P1].

Welcome your critique on the above.

- you don't have a causal link between subconscious fear of death and the actions of theists.

I have done extensive research on religions in general with specialization on Buddhism and Islam.
In Islam, 30% of the 6236 verses is related to death and the fear of death is various forms.

Christianity in general is about fear of death thus the need for salvation and eternal life via essentialism [in contrast to Buddhism's non-self]. I have not analyzed the verses on the NT in detail like I did for Islam, but intuitively, there would be a high % of verses that are related to fear of death in relation to verses like John 3:16 and others.

In Buddhism, the Buddha Story [core], the Sutra, practices also focus on death.
Note the link I gave earlier.

In Hinduism, it is reincarnation of the soul with an escape from physical death to different realms.

From what I read of other religions, the eschatological theme is one of the main theme of the respective religion.

Therefore there is a link of the subconscious fear of death with religions with theists and non-theists.

- you have no way to access the subconscious of all humans or even a particular group of humans

The subconscious mind is 90% [appx.] of the mental faculty of all humans while the conscious mind is 10%.
The % is not specific but merely to show the significant relative difference between the contribution of the subconscious mind and the conscious mind.
Note there are tons of research on instincts and subconscious actions by Scientists and psychologists.

Therefore I can infer the actions of ALL humans [whatever groups or individuals] are activated by the subconscious mind.

In terms of fear and fear of death, note the role of the unconscious mind;

    Fear processing in the brain
    Many experiments have been done to find out how the brain interprets stimuli and how animals develop fear responses. The emotion, fear, has been hard-wired into almost every individual, due to its vital role in the survival of the individual. Researchers have found that fear is established unconsciously and that the amygdala is involved with fear conditioning.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear_proc ... _the_brain

As with the above I have recountered all the counters you have presented so far.

Btw, I welcome all critiques to my arguments, the more the better which will help to reinforce my argument or reject it if any of the premise is false.
I am a progressive human being, a World Citizen, NOT-a-theist and not religious.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:31 am

Fanman wrote:Prismatic :D ,

Kant is not a Christian. Kant is a deist and he criticized organized Christianity heavily as an inferior ideology.

Kant is one of the greatest philosophers of all times.
Thus I won't be far from wrong when I stand on 'the shoulders of philosopher giants.'


How did you manage to interpret that I claimed Kant was a Christian? There's nothing wrong with applying Kant's thinking on a philosophy forum, but you used Kant as an authority in your claim that a transcendent-self or “soul”, does not exist – which doesn't make sense unless Kant demonstrated such unequivocally. Kant may have reasoned the soul out of existence in his estimations, but he didn't know that there is no soul, and neither do you - that is a matter of belief. Maybe you can present an argument/syllogism which demonstrates your thinking on this matter?
For me, using philosophical authorities kind of kills the discussion, because interlocutors don't want to disagree with them. Like saying: "This is what my big man says on the matter, so I don't have to argue anymore." Which is what some theists do. Only instead of Kant they say God.

To Kant the idea of the soul as an essence is a transcendental illusion.
This is similar to Buddhism's anatta [non-self].

Kant addresses the metaphysics of the soul – an inquiry he refers to as “rational psychology” – in the Paralogisms of Pure Reason. Rational psychology, as Kant describes it, is the attempt to prove metaphysical theses about the nature of the soul through an analysis of the simple proposition, “I think.” Many of Kant’s rationalist predecessors and contemporaries had thought that reflection on the notion of the “I” in the proposition “I think” would reveal that the I is necessarily a substance (which would mean that the I is a soul), an indivisible unity (which some would use to prove the immortality of the soul), self-identical (which is relevant to questions regarding personal identity), and distinct from the external world (which can lead to external-world skepticism).
Kant argues that such reasoning is the result of transcendental illusion.
https://www.iep.utm.edu/kantview/#SSH2gi


In Philosophical discussions, it very effective to use the theories of past giant philosophers who had dug deep to justify their argument to avoid reinventing the wheel.

True, every philosophical theory will have its opposition, thus we need to understand in detail what are the opposing theories to assess their arguments are properly justified or not.
Generally, those philosophical theories where there is merely one opposing view, they are reasonably well grounded to stand on their own subject to its opposing views.
E.g. the view of the Philosophical Realism versus Philosophical Anti-Realism and others with dichotomic views.

I believe it is more effective to use the term 'empirical self' when discussing Buddhism to cover what is common within all the schools of Buddhism rather than '5 aggregates' extended to person, personality re essentialism, etc. then have to explain this school use such and such a term.

I never claimed that you were wrong to use the term “empirical self”. It is idiosyncratic in my view, but I understand what you mean. There's no need for extensive justification. You just need to explain what you meant - which you have... That is what suits you, but it may suit others to actually discuss the aggregates as they relate to Buddhism and philosophy. If you want to use the term “empirical self” that's fine, but from my perspective it is not a qualifying term as such. Rather a description of what you mean. I don't think that people who enjoy philosophy mind discussing things in depth. Using generalisations kind of defeats the purpose I think.

Being not tied to Buddhism and its doctrine, what I had considered is the question of which term is more efficient and objective.

I mentioned the Dalai Lama who has the highest authority in Tibetan Buddhism is flexible to let Science overrides Buddhist theories as far as the truth is concern.
I am a progressive human being, a World Citizen, NOT-a-theist and not religious.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:39 am

Fanman wrote:KT,

Hey, I wouldn't mind being right and creating invincible arguments. :D (though I suppose I am a bit more skeptical about how easy those are to create and stricter about what the criteria are)


Ha! I'm satisfied with a good argument or comment that makes sense. For me making sense is the priority. I also like to learn from others here. I don't really try to create invincible arguments, I like being right, but I'm not too concerned about it. I prefer discussion and bouncing points to and fro. If I had the knack of being right the majority of the time and could create invincible arguments, I'd look at publishing my work! In the years I've been using philosophy forums, I've yet to see an argument that was accepted by all forum members and ticked every box required for being a proof. Prismatic believes he has created logical proofs, but I think his arguments are prone to confirmation bias. He's got smarts, but I think he bottle-necks things through his own biases and strict real/not real paradigm of thinking. I think that Phyllo is right in the sense that it is better to debate with Prismatic, rather than ignore him.

I have always strive to present my arguments as logical and rational as possible.

What is critical is whether all the premises that follow to the conclusion are true, rational and justified. I have always make a point to comply with this requirement. I do not deliberately try to be rhetorical or deceiving.
The only problem for me is usually linguistic, i.e. using the wrong term to represent what I really intended to convey.

Thus it is no point stating I have confirmation bias, etc.
What is critical in a Philosophical Forum is to show
1. why my premises are false,
2. they are impossible to be real [empirically & philosophically] or
3. they do not follow to the conclusion.
I am a progressive human being, a World Citizen, NOT-a-theist and not religious.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:55 am

Fanman wrote:Prismatic,

As I had stated the only valid currency in this Philosophical Forum is justified sound argument.
I will always try to throw in justified sound argument and invite counter arguments, if you are incline to it, then we can trade, else its your discretion to ignore.


This is arbitrary and doesn't compute. You will just claim (as you usually do) that my arguments are not sound, and conversely, that yours are (as you usually do). I can do more than what you state here if I choose to, and still be within the purview of philosophy. This is cliche, but with you, I believe the problem is choice. I don't think that you understand the nuances of how choice relates to human behaviour, and the factors which lead to people making them. As an example, you regard theists with almost absolute disdain, but if you understood their choice, you wouldn't. You are more like a theist than you realise, which is ironic.

Wherever if I claim your argument is not sound, I will always give the reason why it is not so.

As for my argument, it by default I will claim they are justified and sound.
It is for you and others to show why my premises are false or when I personally discover they need to be corrected which I have done many times.

When have I regard theists with almost absolute disdain.
I raise a thread'Do not bash Muslims'.
-extended to even those who commit the terrible evil and violent acts.
My critique is always on the ideology of theism which inspire believers to commit evil and violent acts.

I have been arguing all along, the reason why theists are theists is because of the subconscious fear of death.
Therefore if we resolve theism from the subconscious fear of death like what non-theistic Buddhism is doing, then there is no need for theism.

Note,

    Many experiments have been done to find out how the brain interprets stimuli and how animals develop fear responses. The emotion, fear, has been hard-wired into almost every individual, due to its vital role in the survival of the individual. Researchers have found that fear is established unconsciously and that the amygdala is involved with fear conditioning.

    By understanding how fear is developed within individuals, it may be possible to treat human mental disorders such as anxiety, phobia, and posttraumatic stress disorder.

I am not categorizing theism as a mental disorder as in DSM-V, but it is nevertheless problematic as evident by the terrible evil and violent acts directly from theism.
My thesis is the critical root of theism is driven by the unconscious fear of death.
Thus, by understanding how fear is developed within individuals, it may be possible to treat theism to prevent atrocities, evil and violent acts committed by [a frightening] SOME theists.
I am a progressive human being, a World Citizen, NOT-a-theist and not religious.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Fanman » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:21 am

Prismatic,

Fair enough. I'll take you at your word, but your posts do IMV convey that you view theists as inferior. Not because of them as people, but because of their systems of belief. Perhaps disdain was the wrong term to use.

I think that we view things differently with regards to the forum. I like to discuss things, whereas you like to make arguments.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:22 pm

I agree the term 'desire' is confusing.
I did not create that term but was trying to improve from someone's bad argument.

Here is my revised argument;

P1 DNA wise all humans has an inherent instinct to strive to survive with a will-to-live against all odds till inevitable mortality.

P2 To ensure one survive with the will-to-live one is instinctually driven to avoid death.

P3 To avoid death, it is instinctual to fear death [subliminally or consciously].

C4 Therefore to survive with the will-to-live, one will instinctually fear death [subliminally or consciously].


Note my conclusion do not imply the fear of death is the ONLY instinct that is necessary to survive.
My conclusion show instinctual 'the fear of death' is one necessary instinct to avoid death [P2], thus to survive [P1].

Welcome your critique on the above.
I'm not sure if any of that is true.

Consider a prey animal. It will run away if it sees, hears or smells something coming near to it. That instinct, to run away, saves its life in many situations.

But does it have any concept of death or mortality? I doubt it. But I'm not going to pretend that I can read the minds of animals.

If it has no concept of death, then it can't have a fear of death.

It has an instinctual behavior which is beneficial for survival.

Why should I think that the instinctual behavior in humans is much different? Humans can consciously think and understand death. But why would their instincts be driven by fear of death when animals don't seem to be driven by such a fear? I don't see any good reason for the instinct to change in that way.

That's why I don't think that P1, P2 or P3 are true.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:45 pm

phyllo wrote:
I agree the term 'desire' is confusing.
I did not create that term but was trying to improve from someone's bad argument.

Here is my revised argument;

P1 DNA wise all humans has an inherent instinct to strive to survive with a will-to-live against all odds till inevitable mortality.

P2 To ensure one survive with the will-to-live one is instinctually driven to avoid death.

P3 To avoid death, it is instinctual to fear death [subliminally or consciously].

C4 Therefore to survive with the will-to-live, one will instinctually fear death [subliminally or consciously].


Note my conclusion do not imply the fear of death is the ONLY instinct that is necessary to survive.
My conclusion show instinctual 'the fear of death' is one necessary instinct to avoid death [P2], thus to survive [P1].

Welcome your critique on the above.
I'm not sure if any of that is true.

Consider a prey animal. It will run away if it sees, hears or smells something coming near to it. That instinct, to run away, saves its life in many situations.
I thought of the same example: animals. We are supposed to be unique compared to at least most other animals who, as far as we know, do not think forward to their deaths. They have instincts and also learned patterns to avoid threats of all sorts. This does not mean that when a gazelle sees a lion it consciousnly or unconsciously thinks of death. It is simply guided to react by fleeing or other avoidance.
It has an instinctual behavior which is beneficial for survival.
Exactly. All the DNA (and parenting) need to pass on is behavior reactions. Of course can be guided by emotions (and thoughts in us), and these emotions may or may not get triggered in certain situations. The individual organism need not have a conception of death. I do think it is possible some of the social mammals are aware of death, though I doubt this kicks in when a predator appears. Elephants seem to understand and become sad when they find bones of dead relatives. But animals with much smaller brains and no indication at all they ever think of death will avoid threats. I truly doubt mosquitoes are afraid of death, consciouly or otherwise. But raise a hand and they move away.

I also think that phrase 'against all odds' is not correct either. Many people will, when faced with low odds, give up. They will not try a different kind of cancer treatment. They simply lie down when bitten by a poisonous snake and accept their fate. - this is actually more common in the East Humans have a remarkably wide range of responses to threats and many will not struggle against all odds.

And, as has been pointed out numerous times, people will also choose to increase the odds of their deaths and do things they know both consciously and unconsciously increase the odds of their dying now.

And I suppose if his judgment is that religions reduces the fear of death, then he has little to worry about. Religious people will lose to natural selection. One would have to wonder how religious belief arose. If it was primarily to relive us of fear of death - his hypothesis - then those who believed that should have been more vulnerable to being killed.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:47 pm

I have done extensive research on religions in general with specialization on Buddhism and Islam.
In Islam, 30% of the 6236 verses is related to death and the fear of death is various forms.

Christianity in general is about fear of death thus the need for salvation and eternal life via essentialism [in contrast to Buddhism's non-self]. I have not analyzed the verses on the NT in detail like I did for Islam, but intuitively, there would be a high % of verses that are related to fear of death in relation to verses like John 3:16 and others.

In Buddhism, the Buddha Story [core], the Sutra, practices also focus on death.
Note the link I gave earlier.

In Hinduism, it is reincarnation of the soul with an escape from physical death to different realms.

From what I read of other religions, the eschatological theme is one of the main theme of the respective religion.

Therefore there is a link of the subconscious fear of death with religions with theists and non-theists.
Religions explain why the world is the way it is. Explaining death and what happens after death is a big part of it.

Why am I here?
What does it all mean?
Is there any purpose to what is happening?
What should I do?
Why are some people nice and others nasty?
What is death?
Why does everything die?
Is there anything beyond the material?

It's not all 'fear of death'.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:53 pm

And I suppose if his judgment is that religions reduces the fear of death, then he has little to worry about. Religious people will lose to natural selection. One would have to wonder how religious belief arose. If it was primarily to relive us of fear of death - his hypothesis - then those who believed that should have been more vulnerable to being killed.
Yes. An interesting point that had not occurred to me.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:09 pm

phyllo wrote:[Religions explain why the world is the way it is. Explaining death and what happens after death is a big part of it.

Why am I here?
What does it all mean?
Is there any purpose to what is happening?
What should I do?
Why are some people nice and others nasty?
What is death?
Why does everything die?
Is there anything beyond the material?

It's not all 'fear of death'.
No, there's a tremendous that is implicitly and openly about sex in religious texts. I'd be interested to see whether the fear of sex or the fear of death actually has more potential citations in the Bible.

And notice the Bible posits something in relation to death, then it is about the fear of death. So, we can assume that if the Bible talks about sex, this is due to the unconscious fear of sex - and perhaps fear of not being loved, not being sexually adequate, not being the only one loved by and being made love to by a certain person.

And it's all a bit like saying that boot camp shows that the military is all about the fear of not having good posture and of not having extremely well made beds.

I thought it is was interesting to check what are the most common nouns in the Bible....

Now notice below that Death comes after Mouth (lol) And while Heaven is high up on the list it comes in long after children. And also Heaven means sky, where God is, for much of the Bible and not the afterlife. and it comes after Evil, Sons, Hand and Jerusalem, for example. God, however, since it is implicit in Lord, wins hands down. And one need not have a God to have an afterlife.
LORD - 7365
GOD - 4293
MAN - 2747
ISRAEL - 2509
PEOPLE - 2271
KING - 2124
SON - 1980
MEN - 1860
HOUSE - 1840
DAY - 1759
CHILDREN - 1727
LAND - 1641
THINGS - 1438
HAND - 1419
EARTH - 1088
SONS - 1061
JERUSALEM - 956
CITY - 953
JESUS - 953
FATHER - 944
NAME - 934
HEART - 925
DAYS - 923
DAVID - 881
MOSES - 804
PLACE - 798
TIME - 787
JUDAH - 756
WORD - 737
EVIL - 657
HEAVEN - 644
BRETHREN - 641
WORDS - 639
FIRE - 617
EGYPT - 604
THING - 603
LAW - 599
FATHERS - 584
LIFE - 550
HANDS - 544
EYES - 538
FEAR - 528
VOICE - 524
CHRIST - 523
PRIEST - 503
SPIRIT - 501
SERVANTS - 498
SOUL - 496
SERVANT - 490
GLORY - 480
PEACE - 470
GOLD - 463
MOUTH - 463
DEATH - 456
PRIESTS - 452
CITIES - 450
SWORD - 443
SIN - 441
FACE - 433
WATER - 426
SEA - 424
LEFT - 423
WORK - 423
BLOOD - 415
WIFE - 414
FLESH - 405
WOMAN - 401
BROTHER - 395
HEAD - 394
YEAR - 394
SIDE - 390
END - 387
RIGHT - 385
KINGDOM - 384
NATIONS - 384
POWER - 383
SIGHT - 377
ALTAR - 372
JACOB - 366
KINGS - 360
ENEMIES - 357
CONGREGATION - 356
BREAD - 355
NIGHT - 354
SILVER - 351
WORLD - 351
WISDOM - 345
JUDGMENT - 344
JEWS - 341
MULTITUDE - 335
LOVE - 333
DAUGHTER - 331
SAUL - 328
REST - 326
AARON - 318
WILDERNESS - 315
CHIEF - 314
COVENANT - 313
TABERNACLE - 307
TEMPLE - 304
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Tue Nov 05, 2019 8:36 pm

"Is The Buddhist ‘No-Self’ Doctrine Compatible With Pursuing Nirvana?"
Katie Javanaud asks whether there is a contradiction at the heart of Buddhism.

Two of the most fundamental doctrines of Buddhism are firstly that the self is illusory, and secondly that we can achieve liberation from the cycle of death and rebirth to reach a state of peace called Nirvana. From the perspective of Western philosophy, it may appear inconsistent to claim both that there is no self and that Nirvana can nonetheless be attained, for who or what attains liberation if there is no self in need of liberation?


The illusion of self? Right. Like our biological, historical, cultural and experiential self isn't something that we tote around with us [rather substantively] from the cradle to the grave. In fact, from my perspective, the self becomes less and less substantial the closer we get to those contexts in which we most want it to be whole: in the is/ought world and when we die.

And what is religion if not the perfect invention to make "I" that way?

Although this is a common objection to Buddhism, to consider its validity we must explore the concept of Nirvana more fully in order to understand the liberation it offers.


And how would we go about doing that? Of course: by treating Nirvanna as a concept. And then exchanging our own concepts about it up in the clouds of abstraction. And, up there, words often revolve more around how they make us feel psychologically than in how we can we can reconfigure them into demonstrative proofs. Denomination to denomination that never changes.

When examining the compatibility between the Buddhist claims of ‘no-self’ and the Buddhist project of liberation, the pursuit of Nirvana, as we will do in this article, we will have to remember that many profound thinkers have found a way to hold the two doctrines simultaneously. However, as we shall see, one difficulty with this stance is that it seems to require those who hold it to abandon the demands of reason for a position which is defended without recourse to the usual methods of philosophical enquiry.


All this denotes to me is how the human mind is capable of balancing any number of seemingly incongruous things so as to attain and then sustain at least some measure of psychological comfort and consolation. Among other things, we call this cognitive dissonance. Even among the secular factions who have abandoned all hope of everlasting life, they are able to convince themselves that, at least with regard to human interaction on this side of the grave, we can "reason" our way [philosophically or otherwise] to objective morality. And though there are dozens and dozens of conflicted advocates out there who claim the crown by insisting it all revolves around being "one of us", none of them will back down when they are confronted with all of their myriad "competitors".

Isn't it rather obvious then that what we are dealing with here is not so much what you believe in but that you believe it.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby promethean75 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 12:06 am

the self becomes less and less substantial


Not James Taylor's self.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 4:01 am

Fanman wrote:Prismatic,

Fair enough. I'll take you at your word, but your posts do IMV convey that you view theists as inferior. Not because of them as people, but because of their systems of belief. Perhaps disdain was the wrong term to use.

I think that we view things differently with regards to the forum. I like to discuss things, whereas you like to make arguments.

My vision and Mission is striving to achieve 'Perpetual Peace for Humanity' to ensure the preservation of the human species.
This is an ideal [an impossibility] but it is nevertheless a guiding target where humanity continually improve towards it.

With respect to the above, theism [not theists] is an inferior ideology and practice relative other more advanced spiritual theories and practices, e.g. Buddhism-proper and others.
If we compare the Abrahamic religions in terms of their spiritual elements, practices and results, to Buddhism and the likes, it is so obvious, the Abrahamic religions are inferior in terms of striving towards 'Perpetual Peace for Humanity.'

I am not promoting Buddhism and others, but I an expecting [in the future] all the advanced spiritual theories will consolidate into one efficient and fool-proof general 'spiritual' theory and practices that can expedite humanity towards the ideal 'Perpetual Peace for Humanity.'

Yes, discussion is necessary but arguments* are most critical to justify why my proposals are reasonable in improving towards 'Perpetual Peace for Humanity.'
* it is philosophical arguments not in the sense of being argumentative without justifications.
Note 'argument' below. My reference to 'argument' is not the first meaning but to the rest of the other meanings below.

    Argument;
    an oral disagreement; verbal opposition; contention; altercation:
    -a violent argument.
    a discussion involving differing points of view; debate:
    -They were deeply involved in an argument about inflation.
    a process of reasoning; series of reasons:
    -I couldn't follow his argument.
    a statement, reason, or fact for or against a point:
    -This is a strong argument in favor of her theory.
    an address or composition intended to convince or persuade; persuasive discourse.
    subject matter; theme:
    -The central argument of his paper was presented clearly.

    -Dictionary.com
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 4:44 am

phyllo wrote:
I agree the term 'desire' is confusing.
I did not create that term but was trying to improve from someone's bad argument.

Here is my revised argument;

P1 DNA wise all humans has an inherent instinct to strive to survive with a will-to-live against all odds till inevitable mortality.

P2 To ensure one survive with the will-to-live one is instinctually driven to avoid death.

P3 To avoid death, it is instinctual to fear death [subliminally or consciously].

C4 Therefore to survive with the will-to-live, one will instinctually fear death [subliminally or consciously].


Note my conclusion do not imply the fear of death is the ONLY instinct that is necessary to survive.
My conclusion show instinctual 'the fear of death' is one necessary instinct to avoid death [P2], thus to survive [P1].

Welcome your critique on the above.
I'm not sure if any of that is true.

Consider a prey animal. It will run away if it sees, hears or smells something coming near to it. That instinct, to run away, saves its life in many situations.

But does it have any concept of death or mortality? I doubt it. But I'm not going to pretend that I can read the minds of animals.

If it has no concept of death, then it can't have a fear of death.

It has an instinctual behavior which is beneficial for survival.

All animals have an inherent instinct to drive them to live until the inevitable.
To live is equivalent to they should not die. [cup half full = half empty]
To ensure they should not die, they have to run away from the threat of death.
It is more direct to interpret as animals run away from the threat of death rather than say, run away to live.
The mechanism that triggers the animal to run away from the threat of death, is the mechanism of fear that is within brain.
While the animal will not deliberate on it intellectually, from the human perspective [scientifically and otherwise] there is "fear of death" neural circuit in the brain of animals.

    Yes, animals do not have concept of death nor any consideration for any concept because their brain has not evolved to deal with things conceptually as human do.
    But if we think deeper, within the animal brain, there is a semblance of 'concept' like concepts in humans.

Why should I think that the instinctual behavior in humans is much different? Humans can consciously think and understand death. But why would their instincts be driven by fear of death when animals don't seem to be driven by such a fear? I don't see any good reason for the instinct to change in that way.

That's why I don't think that P1, P2 or P3 are true.

It is very obvious the human brain is extraordinary different from all other animals in terms of mental performances and the degree of self-awareness and self-consciousness.

The "fear of death" neural circuit in the brain of higher animals [primates and other mammals] are similar to that of human beings. Note,


Therefore that is "fear of death" neural circuit within the subconscious brain of all human beings.
This is the subconscious fear of death in the brain.

Because it is subconscious fear of death, the human being is not conscious of it.
However the turbulent subconscious fear of death as fed by evidence of death morph its impulses indirectly as existential anxieties, despair, hopelessness, Angst.
Because it is indirect, the human being is not aware it is from the subconscious fear of death, but the person experiences all the indirect existential pains as anxieties, despair, hopelessness, Angst.

Because these existential pains are felt consciously, the human being has to deal with it.
The majority soothe such existential pains via theism which actually give immediately results.

Since theism has its cons, Buddhism [& others] came up as an alternative to deal with the cons from theism.

So what is the proximate root cause to all the above is the subconscious fear of death.



That is what Buddhism-proper is attempting to do, i.e. by understanding the subconscious fear of death and treating the existential anxiety spiritually, not as a mental disorder.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:12 am

Karpel Tunnel wrote:I also think that phrase 'against all odds' is not correct either. Many people will, when faced with low odds, give up. They will not try a different kind of cancer treatment. They simply lie down when bitten by a poisonous snake and accept their fate. - this is actually more common in the East Humans have a remarkably wide range of responses to threats and many will not struggle against all odds.

And, as has been pointed out numerous times, people will also choose to increase the odds of their deaths and do things they know both consciously and unconsciously increase the odds of their dying now.

And I suppose if his judgment is that religions reduces the fear of death, then he has little to worry about. Religious people will lose to natural selection. One would have to wonder how religious belief arose. If it was primarily to relive us of fear of death - his hypothesis - then those who believed that should have been more vulnerable to being killed.

The inherent "programme" [metaphorically] via nature is set "against all odds."
I have given examples to this and it is very obvious with the majority of humans.

But I have explained, nature is not perfect, thus the intended "programme" could be defective in a small percentile of all humans. If 1% that is 70+ million people, if 10% that is 700 million. The defect can happen before birth or later due to damages by various reasons.
That is why there are 1-2% of people are suicidal and a % had committed suicide. I don't think it is 1% i.e. 70+ million suicide would have been very noticeable.

There are various degrees where the inherent instinctual will-to-live against all odds is weakened which range from the extreme of suicide to others, like depression and a lost of interest to live optimally.

Whatever, inherent "programme" [metaphorically] via nature is set "against all odds" is a permanent feature of all human beings. Any variation to it is merely due to defects.

Some % of humans are necessarily "programmed" to take great risks for the greater good, but that do not imply they do not have the inherent "programme" [metaphorically] via nature to survive "against all odds." It is just that the impulse not to die is diluted by other impulses. But if these risk takers were to be caught in a potential fatal situation, the majority will strive to survive against all odds. There are many actual instances of such display of their struggling against the odds against them, e.g. mountaineers, sea explorers, jungle explorers, etc.

Religious rely on religions to deal with the indirect effects of the subconscious fear of death.
They are not directly conscious of the subconscious fear of death, but they are only conscious of the existential pains from the subconscious fear of death.
When they turned to religions, especially theistic Abrahamic religions, the existential pains are relieved immediately!! This is why the majority of theists are from the Abrahamic religions.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:32 am

phyllo wrote:
I have done extensive research on religions in general with specialization on Buddhism and Islam.
In Islam, 30% of the 6236 verses is related to death and the fear of death is various forms.

Christianity in general is about fear of death thus the need for salvation and eternal life via essentialism [in contrast to Buddhism's non-self]. I have not analyzed the verses on the NT in detail like I did for Islam, but intuitively, there would be a high % of verses that are related to fear of death in relation to verses like John 3:16 and others.

In Buddhism, the Buddha Story [core], the Sutra, practices also focus on death.
Note the link I gave earlier.

In Hinduism, it is reincarnation of the soul with an escape from physical death to different realms.

From what I read of other religions, the eschatological theme is one of the main theme of the respective religion.

Therefore there is a link of the subconscious fear of death with religions with theists and non-theists.
Religions explain why the world is the way it is. Explaining death and what happens after death is a big part of it.

Why am I here?
What does it all mean?
Is there any purpose to what is happening?
What should I do?
Why are some people nice and others nasty?
What is death?
Why does everything die?
Is there anything beyond the material?

It's not all 'fear of death'.

That is my point, 'death' is a big part of it.
Religions may not emphasis the term 'fear of death' but in relation to the mentioned of death, it imply dealing with the fear of death, thus a promise of eternal life to alleviate the pains arising from the fear of death.
Note is not merely 'fear of death' but the subconscious fear of death.
Religions deals with the painful existential pains resulting from the turbulent subconscious fear of death.

In Islam 30% of the verses deal with the resulting existential pains of the subconscious fear of death.
Christianity most popular verse of the Gospel is John 3:16.
    For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life

The central point of Buddhism's Buddha Story is about 'death' and sufferings which are churned out from the impulses of the subconscious fear of death.

Whatever which way, the central core ethos of all religions lead to the subconscious fear of death manifesting as existential pains, sufferings [dukkah], anxieties, Angst.

Death is a fact, death is to be avoided via fears, but nature has prevented humans with self-awareness not to be conscious of the fear of death, otherwise the normal human being will be paralyzed with a conscious fear of death and will not be able to live optimally to ensure the preservation of the human species.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:44 am

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
phyllo wrote:[Religions explain why the world is the way it is. Explaining death and what happens after death is a big part of it.

Why am I here?
What does it all mean?
Is there any purpose to what is happening?
What should I do?
Why are some people nice and others nasty?
What is death?
Why does everything die?
Is there anything beyond the material?

It's not all 'fear of death'.
No, there's a tremendous that is implicitly and openly about sex in religious texts. I'd be interested to see whether the fear of sex or the fear of death actually has more potential citations in the Bible.

And notice the Bible posits something in relation to death, then it is about the fear of death. So, we can assume that if the Bible talks about sex, this is due to the unconscious fear of sex - and perhaps fear of not being loved, not being sexually adequate, not being the only one loved by and being made love to by a certain person.

And it's all a bit like saying that boot camp shows that the military is all about the fear of not having good posture and of not having extremely well made beds.

I thought it is was interesting to check what are the most common nouns in the Bible....

Now notice below that Death comes after Mouth (lol) And while Heaven is high up on the list it comes in long after children. And also Heaven means sky, where God is, for much of the Bible and not the afterlife. and it comes after Evil, Sons, Hand and Jerusalem, for example. God, however, since it is implicit in Lord, wins hands down. And one need not have a God to have an afterlife.
LORD - 7365
GOD - 4293
MAN - 2747
ISRAEL - 2509
PEOPLE - 2271
KING - 2124
SON - 1980
MEN - 1860
HOUSE - 1840
DAY - 1759
CHILDREN - 1727
LAND - 1641
THINGS - 1438
HAND - 1419
EARTH - 1088
SONS - 1061
JERUSALEM - 956
CITY - 953
JESUS - 953
FATHER - 944
NAME - 934
HEART - 925
DAYS - 923
DAVID - 881
MOSES - 804
PLACE - 798
TIME - 787
JUDAH - 756
WORD - 737
EVIL - 657
HEAVEN - 644
BRETHREN - 641
WORDS - 639
FIRE - 617
EGYPT - 604
THING - 603
LAW - 599
FATHERS - 584
LIFE - 550
HANDS - 544
EYES - 538
FEAR - 528
VOICE - 524
CHRIST - 523
PRIEST - 503
SPIRIT - 501
SERVANTS - 498
SOUL - 496
SERVANT - 490
GLORY - 480
PEACE - 470
GOLD - 463
MOUTH - 463
DEATH - 456
PRIESTS - 452
CITIES - 450
SWORD - 443
SIN - 441
FACE - 433
WATER - 426
SEA - 424
LEFT - 423
WORK - 423
BLOOD - 415
WIFE - 414
FLESH - 405
WOMAN - 401
BROTHER - 395
HEAD - 394
YEAR - 394
SIDE - 390
END - 387
RIGHT - 385
KINGDOM - 384
NATIONS - 384
POWER - 383
SIGHT - 377
ALTAR - 372
JACOB - 366
KINGS - 360
ENEMIES - 357
CONGREGATION - 356
BREAD - 355
NIGHT - 354
SILVER - 351
WORLD - 351
WISDOM - 345
JUDGMENT - 344
JEWS - 341
MULTITUDE - 335
LOVE - 333
DAUGHTER - 331
SAUL - 328
REST - 326
AARON - 318
WILDERNESS - 315
CHIEF - 314
COVENANT - 313
TABERNACLE - 307
TEMPLE - 304

Thanks for the above, it is something.
However what is critical to Christianity is its core texts the Gospel not the whole Bible.
I will look for an analysis of word for the Gospel and better still analysis by themes or contexts.
As with the 77,400+ words in the Quran, words themselves are sufficient to understand the context of the subconscious fear of death.

For example John 3:16,
    For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. .

there is no mentioned of 'death' but by implication and in context is to deal with the existential pains arising from the subconscious fear of death. In addition, 'perish' would imply death.
Note my point to live = not to die [cup full = cup half empty].

To understand the Bible like I did for the Quran, one has to read the verse in the context of the paragraph, the chapter and the whole of the Gospel.
For the Quran's 6236 verses I have to analyze each verse word by word then check its context.

The Gospel of Christianity is benign as there is an overriding pacifist maxim, i.e. 'love all - even enemies' as an injunction to absolve itself from evil and violent acts committed by Christian on their own free will and human nature.
If Christian itself is inherently malignant like Islam, I would definitely analyse the Gospel in terms of its ethos and theme.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Prismatic567 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 6:30 am

phyllo wrote:
I have done extensive research on religions in general with specialization on Buddhism and Islam.
In Islam, 30% of the 6236 verses is related to death and the fear of death is various forms.

Christianity in general is about fear of death thus the need for salvation and eternal life via essentialism [in contrast to Buddhism's non-self]. I have not analyzed the verses on the NT in detail like I did for Islam, but intuitively, there would be a high % of verses that are related to fear of death in relation to verses like John 3:16 and others.

In Buddhism, the Buddha Story [core], the Sutra, practices also focus on death.
Note the link I gave earlier.

In Hinduism, it is reincarnation of the soul with an escape from physical death to different realms.

From what I read of other religions, the eschatological theme is one of the main theme of the respective religion.

Therefore there is a link of the subconscious fear of death with religions with theists and non-theists.
Religions explain why the world is the way it is. Explaining death and what happens after death is a big part of it.

Why am I here?
What does it all mean?
Is there any purpose to what is happening?
What should I do?
Why are some people nice and others nasty?
What is death?
Why does everything die?
Is there anything beyond the material?

It's not all 'fear of death'.

Actually you cannot conclude with the above until you have analyzed all the mainstream religions.

I have done a detailed analysis of the 6236 verses of the Quran and the results do not represent your above themes.
I believe the main themes in the Quran is fundamentally the same for all religions, i.e. the subconscious fear of death, minus the commands to kill non-believers.

Note Buddhism's core is represented by 'death' and the threat of death in the Buddha Story and the solutions are presented in the 4 Noble Truths and 8 Fold Paths.
The focus of Buddhism is 'sufferings' i.e. Dukkha or whatever the name is this is directly linked to the manifestations of existential sufferings from the subconscious fear of death.

The whole focus on Buddhism is on Dukkha [1st Noble Truth], i.e. existential pains and nothing much on how to live a happy life and other life developments.
Where in the 4 Noble Truths is the question 'Why am I here?' and the other questions you raised above?
The only likely link is 'what is death' as in the Buddha Story, which leads into the 4NT in terms of 'dukkha' from the subconscious fear of death.
Buddhism presumes once a person takes care of the existential sufferings arising from the subconscious fear of death, the person will be able to handle what is the rest of human life.

The central core of Christianity, John 3:16 of the Gospel is similar to Buddhism's dealing with the subconscious fear of death albeit in different ways.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:45 pm

That is my point, 'death' is a big part of it.
No. Your point is that that religion is entirely about fear of death. You have thrown away everything else. You lost most of the foundations for the existence of religions.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Wed Nov 06, 2019 2:17 pm

Actually you cannot conclude with the above until you have analyzed all the mainstream religions.
Suggesting that you have done this analysis and that I have not?

If a religion does not address the questions, then it does not survive for long.
The whole focus on Buddhism is on Dukkha [1st Noble Truth], i.e. existential pains and nothing much on how to live a happy life and other life developments.
Where in the 4 Noble Truths is the question 'Why am I here?' and the other questions you raised above?
The only likely link is 'what is death' as in the Buddha Story, which leads into the 4NT in terms of 'dukkha' from the subconscious fear of death.
Buddhism presumes once a person takes care of the existential sufferings arising from the subconscious fear of death, the person will be able to handle what is the rest of human life.
I don't know what you are reading. It's all there. Karma, rebirth, nirvana, .... the 10,000 lists of what a person ought to do. Most Buddhist versions love their lists.
The central core of Christianity, John 3:16 of the Gospel is similar to Buddhism's dealing with the subconscious fear of death albeit in different ways.
It's like you read everything with a focus on finding a subconscious fear of death.

:-k The central core of Christianity? Probably it's the relationship of God and man.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Fanman » Wed Nov 06, 2019 2:21 pm

The central core of Christianity? Probably it's the relationship of God and man.

*ding*
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Fanman » Wed Nov 06, 2019 2:57 pm

Prismatic,

You're the 1st person I've heard claim that John 3:16 is dealing with the subconscious fear of death. How did you reach that conclusion?
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Wed Nov 06, 2019 3:37 pm

Fanman wrote:Prismatic,

You're the 1st person I've heard claim that John 3:16 is dealing with the subconscious fear of death. How did you reach that conclusion?

I think that's fair.

For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

eternal life is, well, not dying.
Unless you take a more gnostic take on what it means, which actually drives it over towards Buddhism, at least potentially.

But there are things in the Bible, like this, that could be addressing a fear of death. I don't think he's off on that one.
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