I forgot to tell you…
…I’m a Buddhist now. Err, sort of. See, it all began some time ago after a particular conversation I had with Nicole – I made some offhand comment about humanity, philosophy, etc… and then commented on how I should look into Buddhism.
Well, long story short, I did. And to be completely honest, I like a lot of what I’m reading. Don’t misconstrue my meaning or anything, I still feel particularly neutral about belief and religion and the like. But truth be told, I think a lot of the Buddhist philosophies are very appealing.
I searched the Wikipedia entry on Buddhism and read up a bit on the history and variety of the school of thought. There are a lot of sensible things there, and it’s mainly built upon a structure of tolerance and neutrality. Some of the methods and the personal philosophies, however, appeal to me a great deal.
The Noble Eightfold Path, for example, is taught as the way to the cessation of personal suffering; one of the Four Noble Truths, it is a way of breaking life down into experiences and lessons with which one can broaden themselves and rise above adversity.
2. Right Actions—Wholesome action, avoiding action that would do harm
3. Right Livelihood—One’s way of livelihood does not harm in any way oneself or others; directly or indirectly
Samadhi is developing mastery over one’s own mind
5. Right Mindfulness/Awareness—Mental ability to see things for what they are with clear consciousness
6. Right Concentration/Meditation—Being aware of the present reality within oneself, without any craving or aversion
Prajñā is the wisdom which purifies the mind
8. Right Thoughts—Change in the pattern of thinking
To go over the list, it all seems perfectly feasible. If there’s any one thing that the world seems to agree on (if only textually), it’s that you should do unto others as you would have them do unto you. And looking at the Eightfold above, it certainly doesn’t seem to hard to apply those learnings in real life… and pay it forward.
Anyway, I may be the only Philosophical Buddhist on Facebook, if not the world, but I am in it with opened ears and an open mind. I’m going to go to bed and try to spread some joy tomorrow. Hope you do as well.