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Zen, Orientation and Buddhism

To: alt.zen,alt.philosophy.zen,talk.religion.buddhism
From: Ludd)
Subject: Re: Zen, Orientation and Buddhism
Date: 2 Jul 1997 19:17:12 GMT

In <5pdnl8$> Joe  writes: 

Joe wrote:
>> To be a Buddhist means you accept the Buddha-dharma
>> hook, line, and sinker.  No problem.

> To be a Buddhist doesn't mean anything at all.  To be a formal
> Buddhist recognized by some sect of Buddhism may, just as being
> married may be a symbol of two people's love for one another but
> that doesn't mean that two people can't love each other if they 
> do not make a public sociatal deal of it.   Symboloically, there
> are Buddhists (who want recognition as such) and their are 
> Buddhists at heart who don't choose to formalize their Buddhist 
> relationship with any particular group of people.  Hooks, lines,
> and sinkers, are for fish, not people.

> No, Foot, you are stuck on this idea of formalism vs. informalism.
> That wasn't my point at all.  Rather, it was just as it is love 
> which makes a marriage, acceptance of the Buddha-dharma makes one
> a Buddhist.  Many are the formalized Buddhists who have not
> taken the Buddha's message to heart.

  Wrong.  You can see it more easily in our culture: The phrase
  "acceptance of the Christian teachings makes one a Christian"
  is patently false.

  In fact, when - in our culture - someone criticizes one of the
  many "formalized Christians", they will sometimes point to 
  someone who is a "true" Christian.  And often this will be a
  person who (1) doesn't belong to a church, (2) doesn't keep the
  sabbath, and (3) has never read a word of the Bible.

  In our culture, a person can be a Christian without belonging
  to any Christian sect.  Too bad that doesn't apply to your
  conception of Buddhism, Joe.


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