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Thread: Parrots and Monkeys

  1. #1

    Parrots and Monkeys

    Namaste all,

    hmm... there really isn't a forum for this post.. so.. please pardon me for posting it in the Dharma traditions section.

    in the spirit of interfaith dialog and understanding amongst the various world traditions.

    Parrots and Monkeys:

    A parrot can be taught to speak, a monkey can be taught to act; they are able to do these things not because of their original natures, but because people gradually teach them.

    What i realize as i observe this is the Tao of seeking teachers and finding companions.

    Parrots are birds, monkeys are animals; when birds and animals are guided by humans, they can speak human speech or dance human dances. How much more so can humans, the most intelligent of creatures, ascend to the realm of lofty illumination if they have the guidance of enlightened teachers and the aid of good companions.

    If you know enough to submit to enlightened teachers, associate with good companions, sincerely concentrate on clarification of truth, borrow their knowledge to break through your own ignorance, borrow their lofty vision to expand your own ignorant views, then even if you are ignorant you will become enlightened, and even if you are weak you will become strong. Then there is no reason why you cannot become a spiritual immortal and a buddha.

    Ignorant students follow their own minds and act arbitrarily. Indugling in guesswork, they consider themselves bright and will not humble themselves. Thus they misapprehend the road ahead. Though they are said to deceive others, in reality they are deceiving themselves. This is looking on the great matter of essence and life and child's play. It is no wonder they strive all their lives with no attainment. Is this not a pity?

    Liu-I Ming (1737 C.E. - ? )


    in my view, these words are as true today as they were some 250 years ago.

    in some respects, it is perhaps worse today than it was when this was written.. for, today, we have the wonderful internet with nearly all the information one could desire about a given topic. thus, that beings remain ignorant of their own traditions, not to mention that of others, seems to be more a deliberate, willful sort of ignorance.... which, to my mind, seems all the more the shame.

    metta,

    ~v
    Meditation brings Wisdom, lack of meditation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back.

    ~Buddha Shakyamuni

    *******************************

    I have gained this from philosophy:

    That i do, without being commanded, what others do only through fear of Law.

    ~Aristotle

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vajradhara
    in some respects, it is perhaps worse today than it was when this was written.. for, today, we have the wonderful internet with nearly all the information one could desire about a given topic. thus, that beings remain ignorant of their own traditions, not to mention that of others, seems to be more a deliberate, willful sort of ignorance.... which, to my mind, seems all the more the shame.

    metta,

    ~v[/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT]
    namaste Vj,

    Very nice post! I wonder if this has anything to do with our karma or is it just laziness i.e. the act of willful ignorance of my own tradition...
    satay

  3. #3
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    Good Post

    Mokshedhir gnaanam, anyatra vijnaanam shilpanaipunam

    Shilpanaipunam part is excellently explained with Parrots and Monkeys

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    What of the other side of the coin, where teachers brow beat the students because they can. The instructors who are only teaching because it is required and the only way they can survive to do some research. Or the ones who let the grad students do all the grunt work and only show up to collect a check.

    Then there are the diploma mills the sell degrees for a small fee. And the best part of that deal is that noone know about it unless an investigation catches them. What does that say about employee screening processes. Or about the true value of a degree in the first place.

    I will say the the internet has enabled people to learn a lot more and faster than most schools. It enables people all over the world to talk to one another about most any subject. And the day of the pretender it comming to a fast end.

    People seem to have this idea of an instrcutor taking a few student under their wing and hanging out some great knowledge. Well try taking some undergrad lecture courses and being herded into an auditorium will 200 other people and listening to a lecture , so boring that if the bordom could be extracted it would run most perscriptions off of the market.

    Keep the parrots and monkeys comming , at least, they provide some entertainment.

  5. #5
    Namaste Willie,

    thank you for the post.

    umm... we are not speaking of secular education in this particular thread.. this is a thread on the manner in which a being, seeking religious instruction, can go about it.

    metta,

    ~v

    Quote Originally Posted by willie
    What of the other side of the coin, where teachers brow beat the students because they can. The instructors who are only teaching because it is required and the only way they can survive to do some research. Or the ones who let the grad students do all the grunt work and only show up to collect a check.

    Then there are the diploma mills the sell degrees for a small fee. And the best part of that deal is that noone know about it unless an investigation catches them. What does that say about employee screening processes. Or about the true value of a degree in the first place.

    I will say the the internet has enabled people to learn a lot more and faster than most schools. It enables people all over the world to talk to one another about most any subject. And the day of the pretender it comming to a fast end.

    People seem to have this idea of an instrcutor taking a few student under their wing and hanging out some great knowledge. Well try taking some undergrad lecture courses and being herded into an auditorium will 200 other people and listening to a lecture , so boring that if the bordom could be extracted it would run most perscriptions off of the market.

    Keep the parrots and monkeys comming , at least, they provide some entertainment.
    Meditation brings Wisdom, lack of meditation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back.

    ~Buddha Shakyamuni

    *******************************

    I have gained this from philosophy:

    That i do, without being commanded, what others do only through fear of Law.

    ~Aristotle

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    I think that buddha said the meditation was like a boat, once you get across the stream why do you need the boat anymore.

    Maybe wisdom is gained by checking fact for yourself, rather than believing some self styled teacher.

  7. #7
    Namaste Willie,

    thank you for the post.

    Quote Originally Posted by willie
    I think that buddha said the meditation was like a boat, once you get across the stream why do you need the boat anymore.


    actually, he said that all Buddha Dharmas are like rafts and, once we have reached the Other Shore, we no longer need any of the Buddha Dharmas.

    of course, some beings become quite attached to their raft and are reluctant to leave it behind when no longer needed.


    Maybe wisdom is gained by checking fact for yourself, rather than believing some self styled teacher.
    Wisdom, in the Buddhist context, is perhaps not what you are thinking it is.

    it is, of course, quite correct that Buddha Shakyamuni extolled beings to investigate the claims of all beings and accept them only once they have verified these things for themselves, even his own teachings. however, once that is done and accepted, a being is advised to associate and learn from the Wise.

    it is a mistake to think that we can attain the final fruit without guidance from enlightened teachers, in my view. there is a Buddhist parable about the Young and Old Elephants wherein to train the young elephant ( a being new to the Buddha Dharma) it is chained to the older elephant ( a being of some realization) so that it can more quickly learn what to do.

    metta,

    ~v
    Meditation brings Wisdom, lack of meditation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back.

    ~Buddha Shakyamuni

    *******************************

    I have gained this from philosophy:

    That i do, without being commanded, what others do only through fear of Law.

    ~Aristotle

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vajradhara
    there is a Buddhist parable about the Young and Old Elephants wherein to train the young elephant ( a being new to the Buddha Dharma) it is chained to the older elephant ( a being of some realization) so that it can more quickly learn what to do.

    metta,

    ~v
    namaste,
    Actually, I have seen this in practice in India!
    satay

  9. #9
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    It is no wonder to me the people are attached to rafts. Rafts are not much of a floatation device, unstable, hard to to impossible to stir in deep water and no real way to put up a sail. They float like a cork and are just a platform to deep you above water. It the persons journey has been long the get attached to the evil instrument that saved their life.

    If I were to get to the other shore I would abandon it in a second, and push it back into the water,some unsuspecting person might trip over it .

    As for following the wise, first you have to find this , so called , wise person. Good luck. The ground is littere with the dead dry bones of holymen who have been found lacking, found to be thieves , found to have exploited the followeres. or as the christians say "shearing the flock a little to closely". Better be careful not to be a victim rather than a follower.

    This whole buddhist thing looks like a lot of talk, but with no central figure to power to inforce any rules. It is all just a little to circular and who knows what buddha was really like as a perons. All we have are books written by a relative who was not above incorporating good ideas that buddha never came up with.

  10. #10
    Namaste Willie,

    thank you for the post.

    Quote Originally Posted by willie
    It is no wonder to me the people are attached to rafts. Rafts are not much of a floatation device, unstable, hard to to impossible to stir in deep water and no real way to put up a sail. They float like a cork and are just a platform to deep you above water. It the persons journey has been long the get attached to the evil instrument that saved their life.


    rafts come in all shapes and sizes depending on the time and effort spent to construct them.


    If I were to get to the other shore I would abandon it in a second, and push it back into the water,some unsuspecting person might trip over it .


    excellent. perhaps, you could let it go back to the shore that you crossed from so that another traveller could use it to cross as well.



    As for following the wise, first you have to find this , so called , wise person. Good luck.


    it is easier than it may appear, fortunately

    The ground is littere with the dead dry bones of holymen who have been found lacking, found to be thieves , found to have exploited the followeres. or as the christians say "shearing the flock a little to closely". Better be careful not to be a victim rather than a follower.


    fortunately, the Buddha Dharma contains explict instructions for testing a teacher to determine if one should learn from them or not. without this method of testing, i would tend to agree that a being can easily be confused on these matters.


    This whole buddhist thing looks like a lot of talk, but with no central figure to power to inforce any rules.


    goodness

    if you are thinking that Buddha Dharma is like Christianity you will end up very confused about it

    there are plenty of beings which are in authority, it simply depends on what you are looking to find. if one is a Tibetan Buddhist, for instance, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama is an authority figure (though each lineage also has one). each monestary has an Abbot and each nunnary has an abbotess.

    the Vinaya is well established.

    It is all just a little to circular


    Buddha Dharma is not an appropriate Vehicle for every being, so if you find it unpalatable, there is no need to partake

    and who knows what buddha was really like as a perons.


    it seems like you are under the impression that there has only been one Buddha, is that correct?

    All we have are books written by a relative who was not above incorporating good ideas that buddha never came up with.
    hence, without the understanding of the testing methodologies and so forth, a being will have some difficulty in their investigation.

    it really depends on a beings karma and capacity if they can practice the Buddha Dharma or not. if you find Buddha Dharma to be unsuitable for your spiritual progress, then i heartily recommend you investigate another tradition which can suit your needs.

    metta,

    ~v
    Meditation brings Wisdom, lack of meditation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back.

    ~Buddha Shakyamuni

    *******************************

    I have gained this from philosophy:

    That i do, without being commanded, what others do only through fear of Law.

    ~Aristotle

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