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Posts Tagged ‘myths’

This lets you know where we are.

This lets you know where we are.

Am I a Buddhist?

Pauline in action.

Pauline in action.

Pauline’s post about Watt Buddharangsee, meaning Move or Change Places Temple, prompted me to think, All schools of Buddhism have the basic logical (Dharma) teachings of The Buddha. The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path.

This photo shows the wheel with eight spokes.

This shrine shows the wheel with eight spokes.

The countries of South East Asia that have adopted Buddhism have incorporated their own cultures and customs in it. This resulted in many different varieties of Buddhism.

Inside the Stupa.

Inside the Stupa showing a stained glass Buddha window.

Still the fundamental teachings are the same. To abstain from all kinds of evil, promote all that is beneficial and purify the mind.

Stupa out side.

Stupa out side.

To understand all things are impermanent and subject to change, abstain from all kinds of evil and personally develop ethical behaviour, as outlined in the Buddha’s basic teaching. Consequently there have been no major conflicts between different Buddhist religious groups.

Pauline put this photo in her post.

Pauline put this photo in her post.

The three major Abrahamic religions conversely are in aggressive conflict for domination. Regardless of the fact that their God, the one they claim to be almighty, condemns killing.

Why is this abandoned little church?

Why is this little church abandoned?

Perhaps Lau Tzu had it right when he said “The Tao that can be named is not the true Tao.” (The Tao is the inexplicable force that keeps the whole cosmos in equilibrium.) Another aspect of Taoism is yin and yang, when yin and yang are in balance it is believed to be perfect harmony. This is described as Wu Wei meaning in flow with nature.

The trees were an ideal setting for the Stupa.

The trees were an ideal setting for the Stupa.

I am not a Taoist, Buddhist, Hindu and defiantly not one of the many factions of the Abrahamic dogmas, Jews, Christians or Muslims with their multitude of denomination all arguing for dominance.

The trees looked good from all angles.

The trees looked good from all angles.

I believe they all have the same good basic ethics but much of the good is lost in the belief in the supernatural, other myths and wishful thinking.

The monks do not use a blower on the leaves.

The monks do not use a noisy blower on the leaves.

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They all say like Superman fighting for truth and justice.

They all say like Superman fighting for truth and justice.

You need facts not fiction.

That burka could be hiding a weapon of mass destruction.

That burka could be hiding a weapon of mass destruction.

What has caused our disagreements and arguments? Our problems stem from ignorance and they continue because of ignorance. Other defilements such as wanting possessions, power and position over others also play a big part.

The indigenous people of Australian needed nothing more than to be hunter gatherers.

The indigenous people of Australian needed nothing more than to be hunter gatherers.

Primitive man was ignorant of the causes of the elements that controlled his survival. Animism was an attempt to explain, the sun and rain and all the elements affecting his survival. This gave birth to shamans and witch- doctors, clever, devious people that claimed they could communicate with the e spirits world. This gave them standing and power in the tribe.

Australian Aborigines understood nature and had no need of technology.

Australian Aborigines understood nature and had no need of technology.

This was in the time of the hunter gathers as man progressed to domesticating animals and cultivating crops he became less nomadic. Villages grew and man became more reliant on the clever ones to lead them.

They had their paradise taken over.

They had their paradise taken over.

Cities and civilisations were formed. A clever leader created gods and raised taxes to build temples and idols of their gods. Many gods were created to meet all occasions. A hierarchy of priests invented dogmas controlling the people with fearful gods. Sultans and kings consulted the priests on how to manage their people.

Tens of thousands of years is said they lived in harmony with nature.

Tens of thousands of years it is beleived they lived in harmony with nature.

Having many gods caused discord in the community, as it does to this day. Abraham united his people by giving them a vengeful jealous all powerful god that would not allow worship of other gods. Although the Jews were his chosen people they have been homeless and persecuted throughout history.

Suwon a walled city South Korea 30 km from Seoul.

Suwon a walled city South Korea 30 km from Seoul.

Strong walls were necessary to protect crops from animal invasion backed up with armies, to protect the wealth of prestigious rulers and their religious priests. Many rulers were psychopaths. All were sick some proclaiming Divine right some claiming to actually be gods. Greed ruled as it does to this day. Greed goes with ignorance, as wisdom is followed by peace and contentment.

This is not a rescue helicopter.

This is not a rescue helicopter.

Knowledge is not synonymous with wisdom, knowledge gave man bronze, iron, steel, gunpowder and the atom bomb. The technology we have today all came from knowledge. Technology allowed the powerful to invade, plunder, dominate and take control of other countries. Technology correctly used benefits man, but the ignorant abuse it. Wisdom must be practiced in the use of technology.

Modern technology terribly abused, sign in war museum Canberra.

Modern technology terribly abused, sign in war museum Canberra.

That very brief outline of the history of man, if taken seriously and followed up by diligent research, from proven sauces, will contribute to enlightenment. Feeding the mind on nourishing wholesome food is the way to bring peace into our life. There are still foolish people that believe witch-doctors and cunning leaders. These gullible people are not evil it is what they accept without question that is evil.

World First World War, was his prayers answered?

 First World War, was his prayers answered?

 

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Young men looking after the environment in Arnham Land.

Young men looking after the environment in Arnhem Land.

More Dreams.

Fair dinkum Aussies we met in Katherine N.T.

Fair dinkum Aussies we met in Katherine N.T.

The Australian Aborigines speak of their ‘Dream Time’ of the serpent and creation. In the light of day their dreams were shattered, they were forced to step from hunter gathers into a modern age. In a few generations technology has advanced rapidly and everyone is finding it hard to manage the transition. Few have any understanding of how the indigenous people are struggling to cope with their crushed dreams.

The Buddha’s aim was to relieve suffering in the world. He explained the universal truth that all things are passing and subject to change.  This is the cause of dukkah, a Pali word that has no precise synonym, in English we loosely translate it as pain and suffering. The Buddha prescribed a cure for suffering by following  eight steps.

Pauline reads a sad reminder of History.

Pauline reads a sad reminder of History.

The Eightfold Path or The Middle Way is a way of moderation, a philosophy that can be practiced in conjunction with other religions.  Because of it being compatible with other beliefs the Buddha’s teachings are now associated with religions and local myths from other countries. There are many schools of Buddhism just as there are many branches and denominations of other religions. The below teaching I have outlined is fundamental to all schools of Buddhism. If you incorporate these steps with your beliefs your life will improve.

A Chinese representation of The Buddha.

A Chinese representation of The Buddha.

This is a self-disciplined guide, to become a better person.

Right understanding, Is understanding the true nature of life, realising all things change and cannot be clung to, is the beginning of right understanding.

Right thoughts, are kind, caring and compassionate thoughts.

Right speech, is honest, considerate and not harsh.

Right actions, are a benefit to all sentient beings.

Right livelihood, is to earn our livelihood in a decent, helpful way not a destructive way.

Right effort, is a matter of doing your best.

Right concentration, meditation is training in concentration and mind control.

Right mindfulness is to be aware of your thoughts and emotions.

A very impressive representation of The Buddha.

A very impressive representation of The Buddha.

These are not commandments they are a guide to self-disciplines, the goal to self-betterment, a path to peace and contentment in a troubled world. The Buddha’s philosophy became a religion after his death, as it spread to other countries their folk laws and myths were added.  Many different branches of Buddhism developed, a hierarchy debating over their differences. With all the complex religious ritual and added myths the basic path has been obscured.  The result is the basic philosophy Buddha taught, The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path, is often neglected. Buddhists need to wake up.

Once a belief becomes an organised religion it is lost in a power struggle for converts.

Peaceful image representing The Buddha.

Peaceful image representing The Buddha.

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It is Chrystal clear.

It is Chrystal clear.

Miraculously Interconnected.

Misty morning sun.

Misty morning sun.

The sun shines, the rain falls and the seed germinates. The sun provides the energy, the earth the nutrients and the rain the moisture. The seed draws its power from the sun, its moisture from the rain and nutrients from the earth. This is a simple explanation a detailed account would be too complex and confusing.

Ebb and flow.

Ebb and flow.

The female produces the egg from the nutrients in her body, obtained from the nourishment from the food she has eaten. Likewise the male produces semen. When a couple mate only the strongest one of millions of sperm will reach the egg first. We are the winners in the human race the first out of those millions to live as human beings. Transformed into beings out of the vast cosmos but still part of the interconnected whole.

Reminder of the reality of impermanence.

Reminder of the reality of impermanence.

  The flower of life is consumed or withers and is transformed into compost. Returning as nutrients to the earth this is the cycle of life. Nothing is wasted or destroyed it only changes form. Man has progressed in understanding over the last two or three thousand years. Empty space is not empty and the colour of the flower is not the colour we see, we see the colour that has not been absorbed by the flower it is the same with any other thing we look at.  We now realise the world is not flat or the centre of everything.

Inside the cave.

Inside the cave.

Primitive man needed an explanation for natural phenomena.  Man has an insatiable curiosity and a big ego, if we do not know we think up a logical hypotheses and work with it till it is proven or disproven. Thunder, lightening,  droughts and floods were explained with the invention of gods.  Today some of the gods are folk law, others have become myths, others fight on for supremacy. While some men still struggle searching for answers, others pray to their gods.

Above the storm clouds.

Above the storm clouds.

A monolithic single God could be the way to find peace but first we need to agree on which god and which prophet, or we will still have problems like Israel and Palestine.

Behind the clouds the sun still shines.

Behind the clouds the sun still shines.

Everything in time must change, when will people change with the times?

Rainbows appear.

Rainbows appear.

It is time we realised nature is a delicate balance everything is an interconnected part of the whole cosmos. Nature is infinite man is mortal. To declare war on nature by meddling in its balance is hastening our extinction. Man is a part of the natural system but not an essential part. Man has become a parasite that is in danger of killing its host.

In nature all is subject to change.

In nature all is subject to change.

We have to conserve, buying only what we need and not waste precious resources on war. Our commercial system has to change from a greedy, throwaway society to a caring compassionate one.

All things are passing like waves passing.

All things are passing like waves passing.

Not only the flower withers and dies, all things are subject to change, all things are passing. Completing the circle of life and becoming nourishment for the new eternal life. As Mr Spock said to Captain Kirk,” There is life on the planet Captain but not as we know it.” Another helpful quote “The Tao that can be described is not the real Tao.” These words are attributed to Lau Tzu. Along with religions I will put all the gods in the too hard basket; I dare not put them in the egg basket as gods are often violent and vengeful while eggs are fragile and vulnerable.

"I protect my eggs."

“I protect my eggs.”

Man does not need threats or bribes from a god and a religious hierarchy to goad them to live in harmony. What is needed is the understanding that all things are constantly changing and interdependent. One then realises that greed, hate and ignorance are the cause of discord. The survival of the fittest is misunderstood, the reality is the survival of a species is trust and sharing. There is no action without a like reaction. The reaction to force is resistance, love and kindness is not met with resistance. If one wants respect they must be respectable, what one gives one gets, this is the law of karma.

My view of one distant perspective.

My view of one distant perspective.

Born out of the world from the earth I came. Into the earth I will return home. This is the cycle of life; let no one mourn the change. Clinging and wanting what is impermanent is against the laws of nature and brings only grief, change is unavoidable.  When the transition comes to me, do not cry, I have been freed from my body. The person is now as the grass that grows; cows may turn the grass to milk. The flowers will bloom; I will be pushing up those daises. The birds will still sing in the entire vast array that makes a day and the non-existent separate I will be once more united with the all.

Can you see a cow and calf?

Can you see another animal eating with the cow?

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Sign at Parliament House Canberra.

Sign at Parliament House Canberra.

Education and Empathy,

Sign I liked, Parliament House Canberra.

Sign I liked, Parliament House Canberra.

Clifford’s Credo is easy to understand but not many people apply it in life. Quote, “It is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence.” In other words all beliefs should be based on logic and reason. William Kingdon Clifford also coined the phrase “Mind stuff” the simple elements of which consciousness is composed. Also the phrase “Tribal Self” relating to upholding the tribe’s welfare and this gives the tribe an advantage, these principles promote the groups survival. Natural selection will in the long run preserve those tribes. The “survival of the fittest” when discussing Darwin’s theory is of then quoted and the advantages in cooperation and altruistic behavior are disregarded.

John Percival made  these angles out of clay.

John Percival made these angles out of clay.

http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/col/artist/469

Hamilton’s rule is actually a formula that specifies the conditions under which reproductive altruism evolves; r x B > C. This states that aid-giving behavior can evolve when the indirect benefits of helping relatives compensate the aid giver for any personal loss in reproduction incurred by helping. In 2010 experiments carried out supported this theory. altruistic behavior is often seen in birds I have seen birds act as if injured to lead me away from their nest. A lone Sulphur Crested Cockatoo can be seen high in a tree ready to give warning to the flock having a picnic on the farmer’s crop. Without getting into abstract mathematics if we are observant we can see examples of altruistic actions in all species.

Patterns in nature are marvellous.

designed by nature are marvellous.

Pascal’s Wager is a bit like having your cake and eating it too. It proposes that humans bet with their lives on the existence or non-existence of God and the sensible thing is to believe in God as there is little to lose if wrong, but the non believer pays a hell of a price if he is mistaken. Blaise Pascle was also a mathematician and obviously a calculating one. He was no doubt referring to the Christian God; Pascle lived 1623 to 1662 about the time of the Thirty Year War, initially between the Protestant and Catholic states battling it out. The Inquisition, arguments and many bloody wars are the result of disputes over this God.

Nature vast and beautiful. W.A.

Nature vast and beautiful. W.A.

There are three religions that believe in this same God, but cannot agree on the details. Judaism has the Hebrew Bible; Christians have an added New Testament with Jesus playing the lead role. Islam’s sacred book is the Quran. I have heard it being recited, it sounds beautiful, but I could not understand a word of it. Except I do know Allah is the Muslim name for God and Muhammad is their prophet. When these three religions get their act together and can agree and live in peace. I may consider Pascal’s Wager till then I will abide with Clifford’s Credo and except Hamilton’s Rule.

Natures endless beauty.

Natures endless beauty.

There are many other philosophical hypotheses, to pursue and consider. The Daia Theory that organisms interact with their inorganic surroundings on Earth to form a self-regulating, complex system that contributes to maintaining the conditions for life on the Earth. This theory was developed in the nineteen seventies by microbiologists. The name Gaia was coined by James Lovelock or Lynn Margulis, who developed this idea. The London Geographical Society in 2006 awarded Lovelock a medal for his work in Earth systems science and geology.

Beauty close to mother Earth.

Beauty close to mother Earth.

Gaia was the goddess of earth in ancient Greek religion. We now say Greek mythology and some say all gods are mythical beings as they do not comply with Clifford’s Credo. Many people will not listen to educated people who have studied paleontology, geology, mathematics and science.

This angelic fungi had a mysterious  glowing hallo.

This angelic fungi had a mysterious glowing halo.

Santa Claus will be delivering toys to the well-behaved children this year. Adults know the truth about Santa this will not affect their conduct. They no longer need threats and promise to behave in an ethical way. The mentally ill need understanding and the ignorant need education ancient myths have been tested over a long time and clearly do not work.

Just another day in paradise.

Just another day in paradise.

  Scientific minds have brought about all the modern technology that has made our life easier. Consider science as a savior, science has not caused the problems we face in the world today. They are caused by ignorance, greed and hate, wake up, war is our ignorance fueled by arrogance, hate and greed. War is our greatest environmental hazard, empathy is the antidote.  By empathy I mean the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Do not blame others, science or gods, the buck stops with you, in the sense of you as the demanding ego.

The wonders the dragon fly started life under water.

The wonders the dragonfly started life under water.

Please visit the links I have added and from there catch your own waves surfing the network in cyber space till your curiosity finds contentment. What a wondrous world science has given us to explore. Do not neglect this wonderful opportunity to learn. Why does man invariably abuse the incredible gifts from both nature and science? The answer to this billion dollar question is ignorance, ego, greed and hate. Education and empathy are the best weapons in life’s battle to survive. 

 Leave nothing more.

Leave nothing more.

 

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