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    How does the religion of Buddhism explain the meaning of life?

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      • #35465
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        by Happy Niny:

        Answer by Twist
        it doesn’t and it doesn’t even try

      • #265114
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        We are here because of karma. Karma is neither good nor bad, it just is. It means that we are distracted from the truth of our existance, and we have to learn what that is, experience what that is. Think of karma as sort of like going to school. You can’t graduate until you complete all the requirements. The lessons involve learning the cause of suffering and breaking the cycle of dependent origination by following the Eightfold Path. Graduation is when you are able to fully realize the true nature of your existance, that you are one with the Universe, the Self, the Divine; all things are one within the Self. It’s not enough to know this, you have to realize it, experience an epiphany, hear the click inside your head. Then you have become enlightened, broken the process of rebirth, and may enter the state of Nirvana, which is truly experiencing the oneness of the Self.
        I like to use a rough analogy. Humans, in fact most mammals, have bodies that are at least 80% water. The Earth’s water supply is vast but finite. Life has been on this planet for a million years. The water that is in your body, the water that you are drinking, has been a part of someone else’s body at least once; the air you breathe has been breathed by animals, man, and plants for eons. We all live under the same sun, gaze at the same stars. We are one with the Self.

      • #265109
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        in Buddhas time there were no Credit cards or Banks to give house loans, so he through with his obsevations find out nothingness or something like that.
        but today with this utility bills and trafic roads no more Buddhas can perform.

      • #265107
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        It says that we exist to be Buddha. Buddha means awakened one. So one might figure that the meaning of life is to wake.

      • #265102
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        It doesn’t very well. Buddhism wasn’t intended to be a religion, as directed by Buddha. It was what was needed at the time Buddha lived when religion divided people and desire was running rampant. Buddha’s instructions were minimal and intended to make people more introspective and make them understand that happiness doesn’t lie outside of themselves and for the most part an illusion. Most of the work done by God when He descends on Earth is on high spiritual planes. A lot of Buddha’s teachings were suppressed, like Jesus’s, and Nirvana was misinterpreted as there being no God. But in Nirvana God plays the role of consciousness itself that has been brought back into the finite state of the soul.This is right before the ego mind is about to vanish, and when the ego is gone it allows consciousness to be absolutely free, fill the divine void of God and experience the infinity of being, infinite power, knowledge and bliss.
        This is a synopsis of a book entitled “God Speaks” written in 1955 by Meher Baba and explains the meaning of life.
        Life is a journey that God is traveling.
        The first phase of God’s journey is evolution. It is initiated from a totally unconscious God as if an infinite Ocean of Knowledge, Power and Bliss were in a state likened to deep sleep. This unconscious God speaks the First Word “Who am I?”. This question disrupts the limitless, undivided, absolute vacuum, and its reverberations create individualized souls, compared to drops or bubbles within the Ocean. By speaking the First Word, God establishes the process of Creation, in which he assumes evolving forms to gain increasing consciousness.
        Individuality is the vehicle of this quest. Evolution marks a series of temporary answers to “Who am I?” The soul traverses a multitude of forms, beginning with simples gases and proceeding slowly through inanimate stone and mineral forms. These early evolutionary stages obviously have only the most rudimentary consciousness and cannot provide a satisfactory answer to God’s original question.
        The original query thus provides a continuing momentum for the drop soul to develop new forms each with greater consciousness, including the many plant and animal beings. Every evolutionary kingdom reveals new dimensions of consciousness and experience. Each also offers opportunities to gain different kinds of awareness. For example, when the soul identifies itself with varied species of fish, it experiences the world as a creature living in water conversely, as a bird, it enriches its consciousness by flying through air.
        When the drop soul finally evolves to human form, consciousness is fully developed, but an individual is still not aware of the potential of his or her consciousness.
        So the original “Who am I?” imperative persists and inaugurates the second phase: reincarnation. Since consciousness is fully developed, there is no longer a need for evolving new forms. The individual’s experience, gathered in early stages of evolution, is now humanized and expressed in countless lifetimes. The impulses gained in sub-human forms can play themselves out in the broader context of intelligence, emotions, choices, diverse setting and interactions with people.
        But obviously no single lifetime can bear the burden of “humanizing” the entire evolutionary inheritance randomly or simultaneously. There must be a method for re-experiencing the pre-human legacy in manageable segments. The soul thus experiences alternately a series of opposites, organized according to themes. Accordingly, in different lives, the soul becomes male and female, rich and poor, vigorous and weak, beautiful and ugly. Through exploring the potential of these many opposites, one eventually exhausts all possible human identities and, therefore, has fully learned the entire range of human experience.
        Here begins the third phase: involution, the process by which the soul returns to the full awareness of the Divine Force, which created him. As Meher Baba puts it, “When the consciousness of the soul is ripe for disentanglement from the gross world (the everyday world of matter and forms), it enters the spiritual path and turns inward.”
        Like evolution, involution has certain states and stages, consisting of “planes” and “realms.” But individuality continues along this spiritual path, and there are as many ways to God as there are souls.
        Each new plane denotes a state of being that differs from the states that proceeded it. The first three planes are within the subtle world or domain of energy, “pran.” There follows the fourth plane, the threshold of the mental world, where misuse of great power for personal desire can lead to disintegration of consciousness.
        The fifth and sixth planes represent true sainthood, which is understood to be increasing intimacy with God as the Beloved. On the sixth plane, the mind itself becomes the inner eye that sees God everywhere and in everything. “The loving of God and the longing for His union,” says Meher Baba “is fully demonstrated in the sixth plane of consciousness.”
        The seventh plane marks true and lasting freedom. Impressions go. Duality goes. The drops burst and again become the Ocean. God answers his question of “Who am I?” with “I am God.” The Infinite has returned to the original starting point. He now knows, however, with full consciousness and full awareness that he was, is and always will be infinite with infinite Knowledge, Power and Bliss. And he realizes that the entire journey has been an illusory dream, the purpose of which is the full awakening of his soul.

      • #265095
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        According to Buddhism there is no inherent ‘meaning of life’. It is up to us to make it meaningful in whatever way we can. Perhaps you could even say that the meaning of life is to make it meaningful!
        Buddhist cosmology has nothing to do with a God – if he exists, he is irrelevent to our situation. Buddhism does not waste time pondering how we came into existence – we just always have existed (time is beginningless, and we were never created – Buddha avoided getting into areas he thought were unproductive). Life and existence is not guided by some higher being, it is in a state of ungoverned chaos – life is not a benevolant situation, and there is not neccessarily a happy ending.
        So there is nobody to blame for our meaningless existence – its just an unfortunate fact of life – but it is entirely up to us to change that fact. And not everyone will be in a situation of being able to change that fact – the universe is not ‘fair’.
        At another, very basic level, there is something that unifies all beings quite profoundly: All beings without any exception want happiness, and do not want to suffer. This fundamental quality of beings could also be thought of as ‘the meaning of life’ in the sense that it can eventually provide a guiding influence out of our miserable and unfortunate situation.
        You will also hear some Buddhists saying something like “The meaning of life is to free all beings from suffering” – well, that’s the meaning that they have created for themselves by following the Mahayana Buddhist path, but is not a meaning found inherantly in life prior to their interpretation of it.

      • #265092
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        Buddhism contains many truths, but one of its major failings (in most sects) is its non-acknowledgement of God: it does not reject God, but it does not have God as a central core of its teachings. God is essential to understanding who we are; what the world / universe is, and why we are here! The great truths of Buddhism include the understanding that all life is sacred; that death is not the end; that the world / universe we see with our physical eyes is an illusion, and that we need to escape the cycle of death and rebirth (in which the Law of Karma operates) to reach a state of eternal bliss, called Nirvana (i.e. Heaven). A book called “A Course in Miracles”, which is Christian-based, has very similar teachings and contains what Jesus came here to teach us 2,000 years ago, but the message has become somewhat lost in the Bible. This book, which is a Masterpiece and was channelled from the spirit world in the 1960s / 1970s, explains why the world is an illusion and what we need to do, in the shortest possible time, to return to Heaven. In essence, though you need to read the book for better understanding, the world exists owing to an error of our thinking, and our aim in life is to return to our Creator, this being achieved through the understanding that we are perfect Spirit in nature; that we are innocent of all Sin, and by asking the Holy Spirit for guidance and to correct our errors of thinking.

      • #265089
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        This is a synopsis of a book entitled “God Speaks” written in 1955 by Meher Baba who was Buddha and explains the meaning of life.
        Life is a journey that God is traveling.
        The first phase of God’s journey is evolution. It is initiated from a totally unconscious God as if an infinite Ocean of Knowledge, Power and Bliss were in a state likened to deep sleep. This unconscious God speaks the First Word “Who am I?”. This question disrupts the limitless, undivided, absolute vacuum, and its reverberations create individualized souls, compared to drops or bubbles within the Ocean. By speaking the First Word, God establishes the process of Creation, in which he assumes evolving forms to gain increasing consciousness.
        Individuality is the vehicle of this quest. Evolution marks a series of temporary answers to “Who am I?” The soul traverses a multitude of forms, beginning with simples gases and proceeding slowly through inanimate stone and mineral forms. These early evolutionary stages obviously have only the most rudimentary consciousness and cannot provide a satisfactory answer to God’s original question.
        The original query thus provides a continuing momentum for the drop soul to develop new forms each with greater consciousness, including the many plant and animal beings. Every evolutionary kingdom reveals new dimensions of consciousness and experience. Each also offers opportunities to gain different kinds of awareness. For example, when the soul identifies itself with varied species of fish, it experiences the world as a creature living in water conversely, as a bird, it enriches its consciousness by flying through air.
        When the drop soul finally evolves to human form, consciousness is fully developed, but an individual is still not aware of the potential of his or her consciousness.
        So the original “Who am I?” imperative persists and inaugurates the second phase: reincarnation. Since consciousness is fully developed, there is no longer a need for evolving new forms. The individual’s experience, gathered in early stages of evolution, is now humanized and expressed in countless lifetimes. The impulses gained in sub-human forms can play themselves out in the broader context of intelligence, emotions, choices, diverse setting and interactions with people.
        But obviously no single lifetime can bear the burden of “humanizing” the entire evolutionary inheritance randomly or simultaneously. There must be a method for re-experiencing the pre-human legacy in manageable segments. The soul thus experiences alternately a series of opposites, organized according to themes. Accordingly, in different lives, the soul becomes male and female, rich and poor, vigorous and weak, beautiful and ugly. Through exploring the potential of these many opposites, one eventually exhausts all possible human identities and, therefore, has fully learned the entire range of human experience.
        Here begins the third phase: involution, the process by which the soul returns to the full awareness of the Divine Force, which created him. As Meher Baba puts it, “When the consciousness of the soul is ripe for disentanglement from the gross world (the everyday world of matter and forms), it enters the spiritual path and turns inward.”
        Like evolution, involution has certain states and stages, consisting of “planes” and “realms.” But individuality continues along this spiritual path, and there are as many ways to God as there are souls.
        Each new plane denotes a state of being that differs from the states that proceeded it. The first three planes are within the subtle world or domain of energy, “pran.” There follows the fourth plane, the threshold of the mental world, where misuse of great power for personal desire can lead to disintegration of consciousness.
        The fifth and sixth planes represent true sainthood, which is understood to be increasing intimacy with God as the Beloved. On the sixth plane, the mind itself becomes the inner eye that sees God everywhere and in everything. “The loving of God and the longing for His union,” says Meher Baba “is fully demonstrated in the sixth plane of consciousness.”
        The seventh plane marks true and lasting freedom. Impressions go. Duality goes. The drops burst and again become the Ocean. God answers his question of “Who am I?” with “I am God.” The Infinite has returned to the original starting point. He now knows, however, with full consciousness and full awareness that he was, is and always will be infinite with infinite Knowledge, Power and Bliss. And he realizes that the entire journey has been an illusory dream, the purpose of which is the full awakening of his soul.

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