Posted by david rose on November 10, 1998 at 00:45:53:
In Reply to: Re: nirvana posted by David on November 07, 1998 at 05:15:08:
:I would like to back up David's comments. Having been brought up a Catholic ( albeit a relaxed one ) I too have experienced at first some conflict.The one thing that has brought me to Buddhism is my own belief that there is more than one path to God ( whatever God is ) . Religion has been the bane of mankind for centuries - how many people have died in the name of God? Each religion says - Believe in what we say or you are lost. The Buddha said no such thing- he said - Find your own path - find your own way- save yourself.
In this respect Buddhism is very refreshing because we are asked to look at OURSELVES - here and now> NEVER MIND AN AFTERLIFE ( the buddha never talked about what NIRVANA was like ) - he told us that we must become aware of our thoughts , words and actions NOW!!
For this reason , the whole idea of heaven becomes irrelevant. As a Christian this has been quite difficult to deal with, the idea of " no heaven" , because I have gone on to think - OOHH
NO !!!!What will become of me!!?? AGHH- the vanity of man- the me , myself and I - does not want to think of not existing anymore.
By focusing our attention on the present , our lives ( I believe ) are filled with a new sense of urgency and awareness. I don't think that there is anything wrong with saying ( in relation to the question of an afterlife ) - I don't know.
Indeed .I think that for the Buddha ( and this is only my opinion, you must find your own response of course)the question was ultimately of little importance.Jesus spent his life showing compassion, he did NOTHING for himself and EVERY THING for others. Jesus was enlightened , Buddha was enlightened. In the end what can Man truely know of the nature of God, what is God> The Buddha said before he died " Strive on, Heedfully"
This is all that we can do.
Hope I didn't go on for too long !
All the best - David.( A learner )
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