- from the Munich-Kabir ( http://n0by.de/n0/ka/ ): Without claiming anything right or wrong I want to write about patterns of thinking and their consequences.Message 1 of 1 , May 19, 2005View Sourcefrom the Munich-Kabir ( http://n0by.de/n0/ka/ ):
Without claiming anything right or wrong I want to write about patterns of thinking and their consequences. There is no need for me to prove anything - you may look for yourself what feels true for you and what not (if that distinction is of value to you anyway) - I just express and explain my thoughts so that I may be understood.
no ego - no buddha
For centuries - actually for the whole so called "Kali Yuga", the last 4000 years or so - spiritual teachers have worked with disciples to reduce their ego, have worked with the ego to trick it into its own doom; have used "Buddha"-consciousness as something to reach, something with which they motivated the students to go thru hardships or at least used "Ego" and "Buddha" as a sort of opposites to illustrate the different points of view possible - perhaps for educational purposes.
In a way the concept of Ego vs. Buddha has permeated our thinking, has influenced our wholistic vision like other duality-dominated concepts have (e.g. "good" vs "evil", "God" vs. Devil" etc.). In a way spirituality, has become a synonym for "transcending" the ego, "dropping" it, or at least leaving it behind oneself somehow. Or - on the other hand - the development of consciousness, buddha nature etc. has been emphasized. Whatever it was - spirituality was expressed in terms of "reaching".
Thus what could have been a field of unbiased study became a system of problem-solving and goal-orientation. What could have been a science did become a belief system. A topic intended to free from old mindsets and be a way into flexibility of spirit and emotions became an old mindset itself - became a sort of religion in many cases.
By it's own values (which I support heartily) spirituality should be a help to see "the things as they are". But measured by its own values modern spirituality has failed; modern spirituality became an excessive system of hopes and illusionary ideas by and large, and that is the consequence of some inherent biases, e.g. the concentration on ego vs. buddha or the idea of personal development and similiar.
Of course one could say, "gaining" and "reaching" are ego concepts, spirituality should simply not be seen through the eyes of the ego, but rather from the standpoint of the buddha-nature. Yet if one drops the "ego" the "buddha" also vanishes. Ego and buddha require each other. Conceptually they are opposites - two sides of the same coin - but in practice they are also requirement and gratification for each other. Disciples (egos) create gurus (buddhas) to have something to look up to (and thus to avoid looking at themselves). While gurus use and spoon-feed ego-patterns like greed to bring disciples into situations which they otherwise would have avoided like cats avoid bathing. Take for example the oath Zen-monks have to swear that they will not leave the monastery before having their first satori - that's greed-bait and -hook at the same time. Spiritual greed, yes, but greed is greed regardless of it's target, isn't it?
I'm not saying that ego and buddha do not exist or that concepts of lower and higher levels of consciousness are impractical or even false. Not at all. But there are different ways to see the human reality - for my taste more detailed and more realistic ways. A human is neither ego nor buddha - those are simply our abstractions. The categorisation into ego and buddha may be practical or not (depending on the context), but as soon as we forget that we made them up as simplified models of reality, we loose contact with our reality.
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