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Thread: Is Buddhism Pessimistic?

  1. #1

    Is Buddhism Pessimistic?

    .
    This is a video talk from secular Buddhist Doug Smith (approx. 13 minutes).


    Is Buddhism pessimistic? We'll talk about why one might think of Buddhism in that way, and whether or not that's really accurate. We'll also look at how Buddhism approaches difficulties that we find in the world, and why it's necessary to look at these difficulties with open eyes, no matter how happy and successful one may be in life.

    Suttas mentioned:

    Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta (SN 56.11):

    https://suttacentral.net/sn56.11/en/bodhi

    The Dhammapada: https://amzn.to/2J8zP9P

    Do you agree with what he said in the video?.....please don't just respond to the topic title and the short quote I posted!






  2. #2
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    A good introduction to why people should start along the Buddhist path. If you look realistically at the human condition you will see that seeking permanent happiness is to misunderstand what we can change in life. Even the most 'successful' people can experience suffering of the kind he is talking about, so what hope do we have? This appears to be rather pessimistic until you understand what we can change through Buddhism. We can change how we view what happens to us and gain something much more satisfying than 'happiness'. I would call it a greater 'quality of life', where you look at life as it really is and experience a greater quality of existence because of it, and that is what keeps me going.

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    Quote Originally Posted by philg View Post
    A good introduction to why people should start along the Buddhist path. If you look realistically at the human condition you will see that seeking permanent happiness is to misunderstand what we can change in life. Even the most 'successful' people can experience suffering of the kind he is talking about, so what hope do we have? This appears to be rather pessimistic until you understand what we can change through Buddhism. We can change how we view what happens to us and gain something much more satisfying than 'happiness'. I would call it a greater 'quality of life', where you look at life as it really is and experience a greater quality of existence because of it, and that is what keeps me going.
    "...that seeking permanent happiness is to misunderstand what we can change in life." This is also to misunderstand what Buddhism offers.

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