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The Vanity of Enlightenment

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posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 09:13 AM
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reply to post by Itisnowagain
 



How would you know where it is? Didn't you say that you couldn't find it.

Enlightenment cannot be 'found'.


Want some cheese with that irony?

If you're not enlightened, how do you know it can't be 'found'?




posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 10:14 AM
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Originally posted by AfterInfinity
reply to post by Itisnowagain
 



How would you know where it is? Didn't you say that you couldn't find it.

Enlightenment cannot be 'found'.


Want some cheese with that irony?

If you're not enlightened, how do you know it can't be 'found'?


Enlightenment (liberation) is the end of seeking.
How can 'what is' be found?
It can be realized but not found.
edit on 17-2-2013 by Itisnowagain because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 10:24 AM
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Originally posted by AfterInfinity
reply to post by Itisnowagain
 



How would you know where it is? Didn't you say that you couldn't find it.

Enlightenment cannot be 'found'.


Want some cheese with that irony?

If you're not enlightened, how do you know it can't be 'found'?


Enlightenment (liberation) is the losing of something that was never real. The illusion is seen for what it is.
Enlightenment is to be lighter - so it is not so heavy - something must be dropped.
Something has to be lost- not found.
edit on 17-2-2013 by Itisnowagain because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 12:32 PM
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reply to post by Itisnowagain
 



How would you know where it is? Didn't you say that you couldn't find it.

Enlightenment cannot be 'found'.


I don't know where enlightenment is, but I do know where it's not. It's no where in here, that's for sure.

I was merely telling everyone to take a break, head in the world, and perhaps 'discover' it.



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 12:34 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


You apply an understanding of probability.

How probable is it that some people achieve a complete understanding of the world, which they can not demonstrate except with metaphors that some people think are brilliant, while most of us are not impressed.

I think it is more probable that many of these supposed enlightened people are no different than televangelists or faith healers. Some, very few, are intelligent people who have followed their faith and developed into wise human beings, but they are no closer to God than other wise and intelligent human beings.



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 12:39 PM
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reply to post by Itisnowagain
 




Enlightenment (liberation) is the losing of something that was never real. The illusion is seen for what it is.
Enlightenment is to be lighter - so it is not so heavy - something must be dropped.
Something has to be lost- not found.


That's your version of enlightenment. It's a good one in my books—but still yours.

You cannot 'lose' illusions, for something must be there for you to lose. You can only gain an understanding into where you've went astray.



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 12:54 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 




That's your version of enlightenment. It's a good one in my books—but still yours.


What's your version?



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 01:04 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


I can't believe enlightenment exists, but if it did, I think it would be something very similar to nihilism.



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 01:12 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 



I can't believe enlightenment exists, but if it did, I think it would be something very similar to nihilism.


Two questions:

One, how do you define enlightenment?

Two, do you believe that the ability to question the ability to question the ability to question the ability to question has no significance at all? Or is existence meaningless to you?

Or in other words, are you just wasting time until you have no more time to waste?



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 01:37 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 





One, how do you define enlightenment?

It is an ideal. That's how enlightenment exists to me.


Two, do you believe that the ability to question the ability to question the ability to question the ability to question has no significance at all? Or is existence meaningless to you?

Or in other words, are you just wasting time until you have no more time to waste?

Existence, to me, is inherently valuable. I love life, my existence, myself, the world etc. I don't waste time when it comes to living, only when it comes to working (as you can see by the time I waste here).

I am actually in the process of writing a thread about nihilism and values. That thread should serve as a better answer. I would like your input on it when it's ready.



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 01:45 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 




It is an ideal. That's how enlightenment exists to me.


Then why would nihilism be enlightenment to you when you see value in existence? Nihilism is essentially an argument for the pointlessness in life, which is only valid when you exclude the miracle of man, who is able to give meaning to anything and everything. That's the power of creation - to give meaning and value.

Nihilism says it is all pointless. And you compare it to enlightenment, as an ideal?



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 02:32 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 



Then why would nihilism be enlightenment to you when you see value in existence? Nihilism is essentially an argument for the pointlessness in life, which is only valid when you exclude the miracle of man, who is able to give meaning to anything and everything. That's the power of creation - to give meaning and value.

Nihilism says it is all pointless. And you compare it to enlightenment, as an ideal?

I agree. Nihilism itself is a value judgement, a contrived purpose, and an invented ideal, much like the miracle of man, enlightenment, God or anything else that puts man on a proverbial pedestal—all ideals. To realize that in order to get through life and live happily we must interpret things to create and give meaning and value, is to realize a nihilistic world.

But nihilism itself isn't pointless, it's merely an affect of believing in a certain foundation of beliefs for so long and having it pulled out from beneath your feet. The subsequent tumble into a seemingly endless abyss is dangerous, but in my mind necessary to discover real value and meaning. Sometimes that fall lasts forever, and can lead to depression or worse, but sooner we find a better footing on that which has value—existence, our selves, our interpretations, etc.



posted on Feb, 17 2013 @ 03:04 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 


I think you're not understanding my point here. Nihilism says that without human interpretation, existence has no meaning. It is run according to an infinitely layered, infinitely vast, infinitely intricate series of variables that, at its core, has no meaning except the laws of physics. No intelligence, no purpose. If the numbers change, the circumstances change. Anything beyond that is pure interpretation.

But if humans give existence meaning beyond that, that changes existence in and of itself. We are the wild card. We make a decision, and reality changes to reflect that. Maybe the reason we can't decide on the meaning of existence is that we are the meaning of existence.



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 03:31 AM
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One of the important turning points in the life, the lives, actually, of a sentient being is the arising of the thought of enlightenment. If one has never thought that enlightenment might exist, and there are millions of people in that category, then one is in the so called "cut off family" of people doomed to continue to be reborn in ignorance of the Dharma.

If one has had the "thought of enligtenment" then the seed has been planted in the mind that will eventually lead one to seek enlightenment.

The only turning point of similar importance in the lives of a sentient being is the "realization of shunyata".

Enlightenment in Buddhism is not a creation, it is a discovery.

If one does not believe that there is anything to be discovered and goes about business accordingly, one lives as a member of the "cut off" family. One wanders, life to life, like a sleepwalker, in bewilderment, disoriented, puzzled, prone to error, directionless, never establishing a firm orientation or a firm grounding.

One of the characteristics of human beings is manifold attempts to ground themselves in something.

It can be as ephemeral as "rock and roll", as in "We built this city with rock and roll!!!!", the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, etc., or as solid and comfortable as the British aristocracy, into which innumerable Brits would like to worm themselves, in order to spend this lifetime in as many repetitions as possible of the "seasons".

It can be the academic world or the church hierarchy or any human created social and material edifice.

People want stability.

Even rock and rollers.

Unfortunately the stability created in innumerable ways by human beings is an unstable stability. The "thought of enlightenment" is the thought that maybe there is a stable stability, accessible to all, independant of life's ups and downs.

The message of the Buddha is, essentially, "There is such a stability and I found it. You can too and here's how."

Enlightenment is being grounded in that stability. It is many other things as well but it's main characteristic as seen from the perspective of a sentient being is stability.

edit on 18-2-2013 by ipsedixit because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 03:35 AM
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reply to post by ipsedixit
 


Jesus was born out of the stable as all men are. Return to source to find the stable.
Uncover what never changes (stable) and you will be home with the father.
edit on 18-2-2013 by Itisnowagain because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 03:39 AM
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reply to post by ipsedixit
 


Awakening often happens with no prior thought of enlightenment.



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 03:52 AM
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Originally posted by Itisnowagain
reply to post by ipsedixit
 


Awakening often happens with no prior thought of enlightenment.


I'm only speaking from the Buddhist perspective. Other religions, like Christianity, have their own, well known perspectives.

In Buddhism enlightenment is a very particular experience. It doesn't happen often in strict statistical terms.



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 04:33 AM
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Originally posted by ipsedixit

Originally posted by Itisnowagain
reply to post by ipsedixit
 


Awakening often happens with no prior thought of enlightenment.


I'm only speaking from the Buddhist perspective. Other religions, like Christianity, have their own, well known perspectives.

In Buddhism enlightenment is a very particular experience. It doesn't happen often in strict statistical terms.


Enlightenment is not an experience - it the realization of the one.



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 04:36 AM
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Originally posted by LesMisanthrope

You cannot 'lose' illusions, for something must be there for you to lose. You can only gain an understanding into where you've went astray.


You can have something that is believed without question. When the illusion drops away, the belief is gone. Only truth remains.



posted on Feb, 18 2013 @ 04:41 AM
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Originally posted by Itisnowagain
Enlightenment is not an experience - it the realization of the one.


We'll have to agree to disagree, I'm afraid, but keep in mind that I am speaking from the Buddhist perspective. Speaking from other perspectives, people say all kinds of things about Enlightenment. In the Buddhist tradition it is something very particular, just as in the Christian tradition Jesus was somebody very particular.

If Buddhists went around saying that the Pope, for example, or Rex Humbard was a Jesus, Christians would think that Buddhists only had a loose idea of what Christianity was and ought to inform themselves more thoroughly.





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