Thread: my path to Buddhism

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    Forums Member shep83's Avatar
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    my path to Buddhism

    Hello again, as I said in my introduction, I was for many years a christian and before that and athirst neither of which brought me happiness, and although I still have a great deal of respect for the teachings of Jesus Christ I no longer have faith in the Christian church.

    As I also mentioned I have always been fascinated with aspects the Buddhist faith such as, meditation, reincarnation and karma.

    The final step on my path to Buddhism came last week, when in my role at work I killed a rat in perhaps the most brutal way imaginable by crushing it under my foot.

    I do not try to make excuses for this what I did I did out of fear and because it was required by my superiors, however afterwards I was filled with a deep sense of loss, my colleagues all said its only a rat, but I couldn't shake the thought that I had, however insignificant some might see it taken a life, removed something from existence I had no right to take, from that moment on I vowed to never intentionally take the life of a living creature again, I only hope through this act I might be forgiven.

    Thanks for reading

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by shep83
    I only hope through this act I might be forgiven.
    Forgiven by whom ?

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    Forums Member shep83's Avatar
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    The universe I guess..

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    Quote Originally Posted by shep83...
    from that moment on I vowed to never intentionally take the life of a living creature again,
    That's the first of the 5 lay precepts, which are as follows:


    These basic training rules are observed by all practicing lay Buddhists. The precepts are often recited after reciting the formula for taking refuge in the Buddha, Dhamma, and Sangha.

    The Five Precepts:


    I. undertake the precept to refrain from destroying living creatures.

    2. I undertake the precept to refrain from taking that which is not given.

    3. I undertake the precept to refrain from sexual misconduct.

    4. I undertake the precept to refrain from incorrect speech.

    I undertake the precept to refrain from intoxicating drinks and drugs which lead to carelessness.

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/d...pancasila.html


    You might also benefit from doing some regular Metta practice towards yourself and all living beings. This is a 5 minute instruction video with Ajahn Jayasaro:





    As well as that there are two links to other Metta practice resources in post #2 in our Buddhist Meditation thread in Study Links:

    http://www.buddhismwithoutboundaries...2174#post72174


    Hope that's helpful.



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    Forums Member shep83's Avatar
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    Thankyou very much

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    Forums Member shep83's Avatar
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    Great video, very informative indeed

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    Forums Member BlueFaky's Avatar
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    Hi Shep. Nice to meet you.

    Is it you on your avatar ? You look like a friend of mine :)

    I'm very lucky we have a Buddhist monastery here in my town, and we recently had the visit of Lama Nangdak.

    During his teachings, he spoke about the consequences of a well done regular practice of meditation and he said this :

    When someone is capable to see the roots of himself during meditation and manages to see what these roots are made of, then he sees the compositition of his karma, and purifies his karma.

    Your personality is nothing but a huge pyramidal concept starting back at your very first days as a baby.

    One of the very first feelings as a baby like satiety, is linked to the comfort feeling of being in your parents loving arms, which is also linked to the pleasure of the food taste etc etc.....all these structures are gonna be linked later on to other feelings as a teenager such as recognition from others in the school yard, linked to the desire of meeting girls, linked to the satisfaction of having good results in school, etc etc ..... the same phenomenon has applied in all your life and still applies today. When you succesfully see these links in your meditation, they fade away, the pyramid falls appart, you forget about yourself and finaly get in touch with the here and now.

    You finally experience this wonderful unconditional joy that only enlighted people are feeling.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is trying to forgive yourself from killing an animal is a waste of time. You better meditate and contemplate your guilt.

    I'm sorry I have typed so much.

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    Hi Shep,
    I enjoyed the recap of your spiritual journey. I too was raised Christian, and spent the better part of 20 years as an evangelical. The unraveling of my Christian faith was possibly the greatest loss I had experienced. I don't know if Yahweh exists, but the contradictions I perceived from the institution that claimed to be the representatives became overwhelming. As a Buddhist, I take comfort in my own karma and no longer guessing the will of an outside agent. I'm sorry for what you experienced. In my own journey I wish to be vegetarian. My belief now is that to eat another is vanity, especially since it will not prevent this body from dying anyway.

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    Forums Member biblophile's Avatar
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    I tried several spiritual paths before I stumbled upon Buddhism. I was at used book fair and I was not finding any thing worth reading when a book cover caught my eye of a large black circle on a cream colored back ground. I picked the book up, it was Zen Buddhism by D.T Suzuki, I read the synopsis on the back intrigued I bought the book for a whole dollar. I took it home and read the whole thing in a couple of sittings I was hooked. best dollar I have ever spent .

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    Hi Shep. I know killing another being and violence in general is taboo in Buddhism as it is anathema to compassion, but I think the fact that you recognised this act as a brutal one is most cathartic. I think personally the 'indirect' violence that is encouraged by consumers in the West is probably worse in some ways than direct violence. The millions of animals mistreated in farming and then slaughtered in the most violent way so that people can consume their flesh without remorse, without having to experience the horror and suffering involved, is surely a worse thing than taking a life directly.

    I lived in Bulgaria for a time, where the processes of life and death are much closer and more real somehow. The villagers raised their own livestock although the bigger part of their diet was the vegetables and fruit they had grown. When the time was right they would slaughter their livestock - you could often hear the screams of the animals when this happened. My first impression was how barbaric it seemed to be engaged so directly in this horror but it is in fact much more sustainable and less cruel than factory farming. Plus I think the villagers respected animals much more, and feel guilt and sadness about what they do. The millions of Americans sat eating pounds and pounds of meat every day do so without a single thought for the life of the animal that nourishes their body.

    I went to a deli recently and asked for a sandwich that had no meat in it. They apologized and said all their sandwiches contained meat. It is so very challenging to be respectful of all living beings when you are immersed in a dysfunctional culture that idolizes cats and dogs but has no regard for the well being of any other animals.

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