Thursday, January 03, 2019

And while I'm at it...

I also gotta write a response to this "Meditation and Control" essay.

Here's my response: What would this author have to say about playing tennis? Or practicing an art? A martial art? Weightlifting?

I don't think he gets the point.

12 Step Religions are not Buddhism...

I would like to do a series of posts on the above topic.  There's several reasons why:

  • From a Buddhist perspective, the whole idea of the 12 Steps themselves are incompatible with Buddhism.
  • If one has a compulsive behavior syndrome, it's simply cruel and ineffective to apply 12 Step religious constraints as a "treatment" for the syndrome. And I use the word "syndrome" instead of "disorder" because in a lot of cases the use of the word "disorder" is not only stigmatizing, but incorrect: if one's brain is structured to work a certain way,  and it's working that way, and if it conveys certain benefits to its owner being structured that way, it's really not correct to imply that the structure is "wrong."
  • In fact, if one knows the history of  12 Step groups, and understands 12 Step doctrine, it's cruel to apply that doctrine to pretty much anything.
  • To the extent that compulsive behavior syndromes are injurious to the subject with the syndrome, there's more effective techniques, and these techniques actually are inherited, or appropriated, from Buddhist practice.

The eagle never lost so much time as when he submitted to learn from the crow, wrote William Blake.

I shall be writing more on this topic.  Maybe I'll write a book, too.

We are the Greatest Bullshit Artists

I mentioned a while back that I had lots of new ideas.   Of late I have had some family difficulties and am working through them.  They have brought new opportunities for "practice" as well.

"Practice" is in quotes because a) I think the word's a bit overused in American Buddhist circles, and b) I can't think of a better word at the moment.

I just came over hear because I thought to myself, "Where can I go for something...uplifting... from a Buddhist perspective?

And I couldn't think of many places.

Of late, Brad Warner's blog has become reactionary, especially in response to White American Convert Buddhist liberalism.  So it goes.   James Ford's blog - and a few others - still burns brightly with the glow of White American Convert Buddhist liberalism. Sweeping Zen doesn't have much new content now that Eido Shimano and Joshu Sasaki have passed away. 

There just aren't the blogs around that there were even 10 years ago.  I'll have to check again, but it seems that good American Buddhist writing is hard to find.

And that's because I submit the mission of "Buddhist" blogs was somewhat ill-begotten back when blogging was the rage.

And that probably has to do with the fact that we are our own best bullshit artists. The level of bullshittery with which we engage ourselves is truly breathtaking.  At least, speaking for me.  I can convince myself that I should want or need all kinds of stuff.

At any rate, let's see what today has to offer...