Saturday, September 15, 2018

What do I believe?

I'm sure of very little. I think the core teachings [of Gautama Buddha] are deeply relevant to our hurried, fragmented world, but reincarnation strikes me as unlikely and I don't see the point of Awakening if it's beyond plain human experience. I'm deeply inspired by the Buddha but don't call myself a Buddhist, mainly because I don't identify with any establishment, and don't want to.

What do I believe? That we have an instinct for right and wrong, and push it aside when inconvenient. That the more deeply we're motivated by emotion, the more insistently we pass it off as reason. That denial is a force to be reckoned with, and our principal obstacle. That ethical codes are as likely to produce hypocrisy as goodness. That belief is precarious, especially when it demands certainty. That no religious, scientific or academic faithful can be trusted that can't laugh at itself. That the only way to respect truth is to take it with a pinch of salt. That life leads nowhere until we consciously take the direction it provides. ... If I've learned one thing it's that the pursuit of truth has more to do with letting go of certainty than finding it.
That divulgence, with its parallels with Krishnamurti's teachings, comes from Stephen Schettini's memoir The Novice: Why I Became a Buddhist Mink, Why I Quit & What I Learned, which is more a repository of wisdom than a book. Header graphic is the forgotten Robert Rich's 2 CD album Trances & Drones, which includes the 22 minute track Sunyata (Emptiness). Its cover painting is by Hikmet Barut├žugil, the calligraphy by Abdul Fu'ad. And that is it from On An Overgrown Path for now; take care.

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