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    Q&A: "Should I convert to Islam for the sake of a man?"

    Thursday, July 21, 2011, 2:07 PM [General]

    (Unedited) Question submitted via Formspring:
    “I've met a great guy who is a Muslim. He won't date me cause I am not Muslim. I know he likes me. I am 20 and I want to do the right thing, my friends say I should convert (majority are also Muslim). 
    My family will not be happy if I do it.”

     

    The decision to change faiths significantly transcends dating one potential guy.

    While I'm sure he's a great guy, there are plenty of great guys of your faith, or who won't feel threatened by your faith, whatever that is.

    Converting to a new religion is a big deal. If he cares enough about being a Muslim that he isn't going to date a non-Muslim, than he is going to expect you to COMPLETELY acclimate to his faith-based world view. That means it is a lot more than just saying “la ilaha illallah muhammad rasulullah” (there is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his Prophet); it is a way of life.

    The first thing you should do is learn about his faith. Find out what kind of Muslim he is (they aren't all the same), and find out what he believes, and what that denomination believes. Find out what your role in his life and family will be. Is he going to expect you to wear a Hijab (veil)?

    And if he wants that, are you OK doing it? 
    Open up the Holy Qur'an and read it; see if it makes sense and speaks to your heart and soul. 
    Is Allah a God you can worship and obey?  Is he THE God you can worship and obey?
    Is Muhammad (PBUH) a Prophet you can listen to and pattern your life after?

    These are the questions you should be asking, before you even begin to consider converting to Islam, or any other faith.

    In this question, you said what he wants (to date a Muslim), what your friends want (for you to convert) and what your family wants (for you not to convert), but what you didn't say is what YOU want. 
    Your time would probably be better spent figuring out who you are and what you want. Once you have a firm foundation of loving yourself first, you'll have a better idea of what you want in a man and how to know when you've found him.

    If you decide to convert, convert because you fell in love with Allah, not a boy. 
    The world doesn't need any more paper Muslims, any more than it needs any more paper Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, or anything else.

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    Higher Truths

    Thursday, July 21, 2011, 1:49 PM [General]

    “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”
    -Buddha (Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, the founder of Buddhism, 563-483 B.C.)

    The purpose of these posts was never to attempt to convert anyone into a new way of thinking or belief; but to challenge people's assumptions. 
    Since, the reality is many of us go through life believing the same things that we were spoon fed as children, without ever taking the time to truly THINK about what we believe; to wrestle with the mysteries of the Universe and come out stronger for it.

    The purpose of this post, then, is to present some new ideas for you to try on, and see if they make sense to you and your world view. I didn’t go into great detail supporting the ideas, so feel free to accept or reject any of them, with one condition: you are clear on * why * you feel this way. Various teachers and scriptures can guide you along the way, but in the end, we must each walk the path alone.

    So please consider, pray, and meditate on, and by all means enjoy these ideas, and become a better person for it.

    1. No one KNOWS where we come from, or KNOWS what happens when we die. 
    Passionate belief is not the same as empirical knowledge.

    2. Since we do not, and cannot, know for certain, all we are left with are our own opinions, and what we choose to believe.

    3. The ultimate answers to the questions of life can only be found within (Gnosis); God exists at all time and all places, and takes an active hand in the Universe (Theism).

    4. “As above, so below; as within, so without.” Everything that exists outside of us exists inside of us, too.

    5. Knowledge of yourself leads to love of yourself; love of yourself leads to love of others.

    6. There is no nobility in ignorance, and no greater task in life than working towards learning about and connecting with the Creator of all things.

    7. Science and religion do not stand in opposition to each other, they simply serve different purposes.  Science can tell us 'how', religion can tell us 'why'. 

    8. The Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path provide a keen insight into why we suffer, and how to end the suffering.

    9. The religions of the world agree on far more points than they disagree; confusion only arises when people claim their truth is the 'only' truth. 
    There is no 'only' truth! Our most closely held beliefs would probably be radically different if we'd been born in another place or time.

    10. The Bible, the Koran, Bhagavad Gita, and any other scriptures are useful tools towards explaining the Universe and our place in it; but there is no wholly Divine or infallible scriptures. If it was written by human hands, it is flawed.

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    Allowing, Accepting, and Choosing your Greatness

    Tuesday, July 19, 2011, 4:26 PM [General]

    I Allow my Greatness

    I Accept my Greatness

    I Choose my Greatness

    This might come as a surprise, but I’m not a fan of affirmations. 

    Even though I realize how important it is to have positive self-talk (and I do), when I repeat phrases that aren’t true yet my mind tends to rejects them; “I have a 10 million dollar home in Hawaii,” I say.  “No, you don’t,” my brain says back.  I’ve gone on record many times saying the true measure of whether or not you are following the Law of Attraction and manifesting the ‘right’ way is how good you feel about it.

    And, Affirmations tend not to make me feel very good, so I don’t do them.

    However, something interesting happened to me last night, when I was deep in meditation.  I was already aware of the fact that manifesting things wasn’t so much about exerting your will on the Universe, but co-creating; sculpting results out of the existing ‘clay’ of reality.  What occurred to me last night, though, was that it’s even simpler than that: manifesting is all about allowing what’s best for you to come into being without judgment or resistance. 

    What that means, is say I want that mansion in Hawaii, but the Universe wants me to have a bigger mansion in Fiji.  All the time I spend wrestling with Creation to ‘force’ my will into being, is time I’m NOT getting a better result.  And, as we’ve discussed before you can worry, or you can have faith; but not both.  Worry is telling God He can’t handle it, so you need to come up with a solution.  Being overly attached to a certain result is basically the same thing; even though you definitely need a clear vision, you also have to be willing to say ‘have Thine own way’ to the God/The Universe and trust that everything is going to work out the absolute best way that it can.

    So, while I was meditating on this, these three affirmations popped into my head as clearly as if someone said them in my ear:

    I Allow my Greatness

    I Accept my Greatness

    I Choose my Greatness

    As I relaxed and let the truth come to me, I realized how much sense it made: step one is to allow it to come to you.  Most of us spend so much energy struggling just to be normal; to not step on toes, or trying to win the approval of people around us.  The first step, then, is to allow for new and better things to arrive in your life before then CAN arrive in your life.

    Then you have to accept what comes.  Like I said above, don’t miss the bigger mansion because you are clinging to the small one; don’t miss your true love because you are obsessed with someone else.  If you truly have faith, you’ll be grateful for whatever does (or doesn’t) show up in your life.

    And finally choose, CHOOSE your greatness.  At first I was surprised that ‘believe’ in your greatness didn’t come through, but I see now why ‘choose’ is a much better word.  I say that because we all ‘believe’ things that we don’t apply.  We all ‘believe’ we should love one another; not lie, not steal, not cheat etc. but the reality is we all slip up from time to time.

    When you really CHOOSE something though, it is the truth; it is your reality *and* actuality.  It becomes not just how you feel about something; it becomes how things really are.  And as you know, once your inner world and outer world are in alignment, then true miracles can manifest.   

    So there you go, three affirmations from the guy who’s no fan of affirmations; from God’s lips to my ears to your computer screen.  Try them for yourself, or sit in stillness and allow new ones that are a better fit to be delivered to you.  Either way, once you are allowing, accepting, and choosing the best the Universe has to offer, you’ll have opened the door to a rain of blessings you can hardly imagine!

    I Allow my Greatness

    I Accept my Greatness

    I Choose my Greatness

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

     

    Can anyone be like Jesus or Buddha?

    Monday, July 18, 2011, 10:49 PM [General]

    (Unedited) question submitted via Formspring 
    “Can anyone reach a point of spiritual enlightenment where they are like Jesus and Buddha in the sense that they can perform miracles like healing people, defying gravity, etc. Or were Jesus and Buddha something other than human?”

    The answer to both questions is: yes. 
    Obviously, many people see both Jesus and Buddha in many different lights, all the way from one-and-only God man, all the way down to believing no such men even existed...and that's among 'believers'!

    For our purposes, both Jesus and Buddha were actual men, who's singular mission was to instruct people on *how * to connect with the true source of all of Creation (God in Christianity, Nirvana in Buddhism). So, in that, even in their own teachings both taught that we were capable of doing all they could and more:

    “I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”
    John 14:12 (NIV)

    “All complex things decay...work out your own salvation with diligence” -Buddha's dying words

    BUT

    There are three major disclaimers that need to said here:
    Both Jesus and Buddha gave up absolutely everything, to study the mystical path. Buddha was a wealthy prince, and left that, his wife, and his child to live as a beggar for the rest of his life. 
    While it's not exactly clear where all Jesus may have studied in his youth, it is very apparent he was willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice for what he believed, too.

    The point is, achieving the levels they achieved requires a lifetimes worth of dedication and focus the average person doesn't have it within them to generate.

    The second one is any sort of 'mystical powers', Siddhis, miracles, or whatever abilities that a person develops along the spiritual path are actually byproducts of your inner growth. Many mystics teach that the hardest part about growing is *not * getting sidetracked by the abilities you develop. Gaining a reputation as a miracle worker can be a huge obstacle on the spiritual path, not to mention a huge source of negative ego. 
    So walking the path in hopes of being able to walk on water and raise the dead, virtually guarantees you'll *never * be able to walk on water, or raise the dead!

    And finally, and most importantly:
    The vast, vast, vast, VAST majority of people who claim any sort of mystical or supernatural powers are lying to you, lying to themselves, or both!
    The biggest red flag of all is them asking for money to demonstrate their abilities, since as I said above such abilities are a byproduct of a certain amount of inner development. 
    Showing off to impress people, get paid, or both implies an abundance of ego, which usually isn't found in true 'holy' wo/men.

    One other thing: Facebook has an excellent 'Jesus and Buddha Fan Page' that you might be interested in.


    So to paraphrase: 
    Work as hard as Jesus, Buddha, and a handful of other Masters did, and you can get what they got and do what they did.

    Almost no one does, so almost no one can!

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    Why can't I attract MONEY???

    Monday, July 18, 2011, 10:42 PM [General]

    (Unedited) Questions submitted via Formspring.me:
    Sup Dave! I've been suffering with no job for 1 year. Striving for my dream job and/or any other job just doesn't work. Even tho i try out different ways to get money(on the internet) doesn't work as well. What now?

    and

    Hello Dave! My Parents are using the LOA since the past 10 years, but when it comes to money it doesn't work. I feel so sorry and afraid for them. They have so much debt that they don't know what to do. Staying positive doesn't help anymore. :(

    We've talked extensively about the Law of Attraction and how to make it work for you already, so let us now talk about why it fails.

    The answer is: it doesn't.

    The Law of Attraction does not, and can not fail, no more than gravity or magnetism can 'fail'. 
    Then if the Law can't fail, what is the problem? The Law can't fail, but *we * can fail the Law.

    First and foremost, define 'isn't working'!

    Do you mean you've seen NO results? Or have you gotten results that were less than what you expected? 
    And with the jobs, have you not been getting call backs, or not getting the interview in the first place?

    There is an important point here: the Law of Attraction isn't a magic wand; it (probably) won't miracle what you want into your lap. The Law is the software; your efforts are the hardware. 

    First and foremost, be absolutely clear on what it is you want, and why. 
    What is it that you want to do? What is your dream job, and how can you get paid to do it? Assuming you've tried the obvious solutions (craigslist, monster, a headhunting agency, etc.) then the follow up question is: what's the next best thing?
    Figure out exactly how much money you need to bring in (and the answer to the next question will help clarify that); once you know your bare minimum, then you can start looking for the closest thing to what you love. For instance, maybe you want to be a novelist, but the closest you can get is to being a transcriber for a law firm. But here's the thing: it's a start! You're still getting paid to write!

    If you are having trouble attracting what you want, first and foremost get clear on exactly what you want and why. In addition to that, focus on attracting smaller things more often to build up your faith in the Law; parking spaces and phone calls from friends are usually a good way to start manifesting, and will help you build up the proper enthusiasm.

    Using the Law is like boiling water; it takes time to build to a boil, and EVERY time you allow yourself to become negative or lose confidence, it's like turning off the heat. If you get back on course quickly, you don't lose the built up energy. If you get disheartened at every bump in the road, that pot may never boil.

    To answer the second question:
    You say that staying positive doesn't help anymore; while you all are probably frustrated, being negative ABSOLUTELY won't help. 


    How could it? 
    If they are having trouble attracting money into their lives, I would say one of two things is missing (if not both): first, why do they want it?

    No one ever wants money; you want what they money will GET you. So what is it? Does money mean a bigger house, a nicer car, or something intangible like 'freedom'? Whatever it is they really want the money for is what's important; and even then, that's not what they really want, either. What they want is how doing or having those things is going to make them *feel *. So if the goal is a sense of contribution, or excitement, or security and stability, focus on those feelings. Focus on every little thing in their lives that does or ever has made them feel that way; focus on the FEELINGS they are after, not the money. 


    The other possibility is what are their beliefs about money, and about wealthy people? If they are often critical of wealthy people, or say things like “they don't need a house that big” or “no one needs to drive a car that expensive”, then don't be surprised that you all suffer financially. 


    You can't spend 99% of your time telling the Universe (and your own subconscious mind) that wealthy people are bad, and 1% asking the Universe to make you wealthy!

    So be clear on what you want and why you want it, and be genuinely grateful not just for the abundance in your own life, but in the lives of others, too; the more you celebrate abundance, the more abundance will come into your life.

    And again, remember: the Law is always working, 100% of the time; what you are receiving in your life is showing you how you really think and feel inside!

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    "I stay because I'm afraid of being alone, but what can I do?"

    Monday, July 18, 2011, 12:58 AM [General]

    Question submitted via Formspring
    “I stay with him because I'm afraid of being alone, but what can I do?”

    I have gone on record many times before saying that it is better to be alone, than be with the wrong person. 

    In my coaching work  I hear all kinds of excuses for staying in relationships that aren't working anymore. If your reason for staying together is anything other than “because we love each other more than anything else”, it's a bad reason. Unfortunately, there are still situations where even that isn't enough.

    Let me reiterate: IT IS BETTER TO BE ALONE THAN TO BE WITH THE WRONG PERSON.

    There are a few reasons why this is the case. 
    First is, it sends the wrong message to the Universe. Clinging to a relationship that you know isn't working is telling the Universe that you don't deserve anything better. 
    If you have the courage to step out on your own, then you at least create the possibility of BOTH of you finding someone who can help you feel happy and fulfilled.

     

    The second reason is, it’s giving in to fear. The fear of being alone is one of the most common ones out there; the question is: what are you afraid of?
    Many people stay in toxic, hostile, and even dangerous relationships with emotionally, verbally, or even physically abusive relationships because they believe they can't do any better. 
    To which I reply: unfulfilling relationships aren't hard to come by; finding someone else to be mean to you won't be too hard to do!

    The real issue is even deeper, and that's the old fear that “I’m not good enough”. That fear that deep down inside, a person doesn't really feel like they are worth loving, or that they deserve to be happy. So, they manifest relationships that demonstrate this, possibly even with mates that TELL them no one else will love them if they leave.

     

    The real truth is this: if someone is abusing you, then they don’t love you. 
    Mental, emotional, or verbal abuse are ALL abuse, and should never be tolerated, ever. 
    If the relationship has just gone stale, then you need to learn how to work together to improve it, or start the process of letting go. 


    Remember, as always: if you can't communicate, then you don't have a relationship!

    What you have to do is, love yourself first. No one who truly loves themselves is ever afraid of being alone, since you know your value and enjoy your own company!

    And it doesn't matter who you are, what you look like, how much you weigh or what you do for a living, someone out there is looking for someone just like you at this very second.

    Clinging to your old sinking ship of a relationship is just keeping them waiting for nothing. 


    The only thing worse than being alone is being alone with someone else under the same roof

    You are great, and I love you! 

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    is it a sin to be gay, or have pre-marital sex???

    Monday, July 18, 2011, 12:01 AM [General]

    Question submitted via Formspring.me:
    “I feel guilty for not being a virgin and sometimes having gay feelings (because I was raised with the belief that both are wrong). I feel like less of a spiritual person because I had pre-marital sex and I feel lesbian sometimes. What's a girl to do???”

    The first thing to do, is split this question into two parts: 1, is it necessary to wait until marriage to have sex, and 2. is it 'wrong' to be a lesbian.

    Let's look at the first part, first. 
    While Christians are not the only ones who hold these beliefs, they certainly are the most common in the United States at least; so let us look at a passage from the Bible that is most often used as 'proof' that pre-marital sex is wrong.

    1 Corinthians 6:12-20 (New International Version)

    Sexual Immorality
    12"Everything is permissible for me"—but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible for me"—but I will not be mastered by anything. 13"Food for the stomach and the stomach for food"—but God will destroy them both. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 14By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also. 15Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! 16Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, "The two will become one flesh."[a] 17But he who unites himself with the Lord is one with him in spirit.

    18Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body. 19Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.

    Seems pretty straight forward, right? 
    Or is it?

    First thing, who wrote this, and who was it intended for?
    Paul wrote this somewhere around the year 55 AD; DECADES after Jesus Christ was already crucified. Add to that, Paul never even knew the man, 'being struck blind on the road to Damascus' notwithstanding. 
    And just in case you take Paul's word as Gospel (pun intended), remember Peter was the rock that Jesus said his church would be built on. And Peter and Paul became *bitter rivals * while they were both still alive.

    In these verses, Paul is advising against sexual immorality...what is that?
    What does morality or immorality even mean? 
    I'll tell you: it's *totally relative *. There is no universal definition of morality; it varies from place to place, time to time, situation to situation, and person to person. 
    I'll give you an example: most people would agree murder is wrong, yet soldiers win medals for killing large numbers of people. 
    Or we agree stealing is wrong, but what about police raiding a drug dealers warehouse and stealing their drugs? That's a 'good' thing, even though they are still breaking, entering, and stealing from those people.

    Understand?

    So is the point that you shouldn't listen to Paul? 
    Not necessarily, the point is you should decide how much weight you should put into a letter written 2,000 years ago to a group of people you've probably never heard of!

    Another point that was made in a previous post about sex is that in the past, land and title were passed along by bloodline; so being ABSOLUTELY SURE a child was yours was top priority. In that case, making sure your wife was a virgin on your wedding night was the best way to make sure the child was yours. 
    In the year 2011, however, we have a little thing called a DNA test. It's no mystery who the father is anymore, so that reason for waiting for marriage is out.

    And for the arguments that it is 'better' to wait: no one knows if it's better to wait or not. 
    Why? Since the people who waited, waited; they don't know what it is like to have pre-marital sex with someone. And the ones who didn't wait, didn't wait; they don't know if it would have been better on their wedding night or not.

    So what's the answer to the first part of the question? 
    Sex is only a 'sin' if you think it is. 
    There is no logical reason to believe it; biological drives are biological drives. If two consenting adults decide to SAFELY lay with one another, who are we to judge? 
    Just be sure not to mistake sex for love; the two quite often have nothing to do with each other, especially for men!

     

    Now to the second part:
    Whether or not it is a 'sin' to be gay is a HUGE can of worms that I couldn't do justice if I wrote 100 more pages, so I will try to be brief.

    A lot of the Bible based arguments against it were written by our good friend Paul. 
    Recognize also, he was actively trying to preach to the Greeks, where homosexuality was VERY common. The Greek solution to the problem of keeping women virgins (an idea they came up with quite independently of Christianity...see? Culture.) was for men to have sex with men.

    Sex was also a big part of the Greek Mystery Religions, which were the popular faiths of the time. What's the best way to get people to stop doing something? Convince them God hates them for it. 
    What's the best way to get new converts? Promise them you'll tell them how to make God stop hating them.

    Here's the challenge, though. 
    Most of the anti-gay passages in the Bible are aimed at specific individuals, like the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, who were terrible for MANY reasons. Look up the Book of Jasher and see what it says about them in there! None of these verses exist in a vacuum; they were written by someone, for someone, at a certain period in time; it's a mistake to look at them like absolute statements that apply at all times to all people.

    The Bible, and any other 'Holy Book' only has what power and authority that you give it. If you've ever wondered why you quote Bible verses to people and they don't care, this is why. Same as if someone comes at you with verses from the Koran, Torah, or Rig Veda it may not have too much of an impact on you, either; if you haven't decided to 'believe' in the authority of those books.

    But let's say it is a 'sin' (which I don't personally believe): then 
    “23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”
    Romans 3:23 (New International Version).

    And add to that

    When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her."
    John 8:7 (New International Version).

    The bottom line is this: 
    there is NO absolute benchmark of right and wrong in this world; almost any situation you can think of either has situations where it is accepted, or at least was accepted at some point in the past. 
    And if there is no absolute benchmark of universal morality, then right and wrong is how you define it. If you choose to define it in a Christian framework, that's fine; but you can do it in a Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, or even Atheist framework just as easily.

    Remember, the person you need to be concerned about is not your family, friends, and church members. You should *only * concern yourself with He who hung the stars and put the planets in motion. 


    And I can tell you, that God doesn’t think like we do. 
    God knows everything: who you are, who you came into this world to be; your mind, your heart, your impulse, and what is 'right and wrong' for YOU.

    If you are curious about girls, mess around with one, and see if you like it. 
    If you decide you are a lesbian, or bisexual, then be the best one you can be.

    Turn within, talk to God, figure out what's right for you and do it.

    The world would be MUCH better off if more people followed their own bliss and served God in their own way to the best of their own ability, rather than trying to dictate to OTHER people how *they * should live.

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    Self-control; Or, How to manage your moods

    Sunday, July 17, 2011, 11:41 PM [General]

    Question submitted to me via Formspring.me:
    “Hi Dave, do you have any advice on controlling moods. 
    Today was a kinda off day for me. A guy was trying to flirt with me at the grocery store, and I completely blew him off. He said hi and smiled at me, I said hi back in a not so friendly way! LOL”

    We've discussed how to feel happy in an instant already, so here let us discuss how to control your feelings rather than be controlled by them.

    The number one thing to keep in mind is: just because a thought pops into your head doesn't mean you have to believe it! 
    Remember, your emotions are supposed to be a navigational system; a way to know if you are on or off track.

    The challenges arrive when you start trying to let emotions make your decisions; that is a job for your conscious mind. 


    Let's look at a standard situation: say you get yelled at work, and you leave and go to the grocery store. A nice guy comes up and says hi, and you snap at him since you're still irritable from before, and you end up missing out.

    Sound familiar?

    Or, when confronted with the situation at work, you can take a step back. 
    Ask what's going on with your boss that made her come down on you like that. Maybe she's got her own problems at home, or her boss just came down on *her*. Maybe in her mind she didn't come down too hard at all, and didn't mean to upset you at all. Maybe she really DIDN'T come down too hard, and you are overreacting because you are too sensitive.

    The only thing you can say for certain is, your boss said what they said, and you made it mean what you made it mean.

    The specific answer to your question, then, on how to control your mood is to choose to control your mood! Be aware of what is triggering you, and what the hidden meaning behind it is. If something is making you mad, figure out what it is and deal with the REAL issue. If something is scaring you, remember fear is a call to preparation: get ready for it and then release the fear.

    Consciously choose not to take out your own aggression and frustration on others, even though they may do it to you. Resolve today to take yourself off autopilot, and start looking at the cause and consequences of your words and actions before you take them. 


    The ability to still make choices and not be dominated by our emotions is what sets us above the animals.

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     

    Jesus and Buddha, their sayings compared

    Sunday, July 17, 2011, 1:38 AM [General]

    We have discussed some aspects of Buddhism and how to 'properly' interpret scripture before, so today we will discuss the parallel sayings of two of the world's Great Masters: Buddha and Jesus Christ. 
    Originally, this article was intended to compare, contrast, and explain these passages; but upon reflection there is nothing that can be added beyond the Great Teachers' own words.

    It is sincerely hoped that by reading these few short parallel sayings, that it may awaken in you a desire to know more; and a realization of the common ground between not just these two, but of all the world's many religious traditions.

    These passages are reprinted from "Jesus and Buddha: The Parallel Sayings" edited by Marcus Borg, published by Ulysses Press.

    Jesus: "Do to others as you would have them do to you." Luke 6:31
    Buddha: "Consider others as yourself." Dhammapada 10:1

    Jesus: "If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also." Luke 6:29
    Buddha: "If anyone should give you a blow with his hand, with a stick, or with a knife, you should abandon any desires and utter no evil words." 
    Majjhima Nikaya 21:6

    Jesus: "Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me." Matthew 25:45
    Buddha: "If you do not tend to one another, then who is there to tend you? Whoever would tend me, he should tend the sick." Vinaya, Mahavagga 8:26.3

    Jesus: "Put your sword back into its place; for all those who take the sword will perish by the sword." Matthew 26:52
    Buddha: "Abandoning the taking of life, the ascetic Gautama dwells refraining from taking life, without stick or sword." Digha Nikaya 1:1.8

    Jesus: "Those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it." Mark 8:35
    Buddha: "With the relinquishing of all thought and egotism, the enlightened one is liberated through not clinging." Majjhima Nikaya 72:15

    Jesus: "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you." Matthew 28:19-20
    Buddha: "Teach the dharma which is lovely at the beginning, lovely in the middle, lovely at the end. Explain with the spirit and the letter in the fashion of Brahma. In this way you will be completely fulfilled and wholly pure." Vinaya Mahavagga 1:11.1

    Buddha: One is the way to gain, the other is the way to Nirvana, knowing this fact, students of the Buddha should not take pleasure in being honored, but, should practice detachment.
    Jesus: No slave can serve two masters For a slave will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.

    Buddha: Just as a mother would protect her only child at the risk of her own life, even so, cultivate a boundless heart towards all beings. Let your thoughts of boundless love pervade the whole world.
    Jesus: This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends.

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.com/bdavewalters


     

    Q&A: "Why does everyone want to pretend to be what they are not?

    Saturday, July 16, 2011, 11:01 PM [General]

    Question submitted via Formspring.me:
    “Why does everyone want to pretend to be what they are not? What is the psychology behind it?”

    Well, there are two types of people who 'pretend to be something they are not'. 
    Four words describe the first type: “I’m not good enough”
    Often times, people have no real sense of who they are, and in response to that they conform to a mold they choose, or a mold they choose for themselves. They become 'the achiever', or 'the jock', or the 'goth kid'; but these roles we play have nothing at all to do with who we ARE. 
    In the vacuum of an idea of who they are, they conform to who (they think) everyone else wants them to be, or who they 'should' be.

     

    The solution then, for people who don’t know who they are, is to CHOOSE WHO YOU ARE! Consciously choose your own vision for your life, and set the power of your mind and the Law of Attraction to creating a new you, a new life, and a new reality.

     

    Which leads to the second type of person, the 'fake it 'till you make it' type. 
    Or at least, the type who are doing what was suggested above and they have changed, or are changing on the inside but their external reality hasn't changed yet.

    Since even once you decide to take on this new you, it will take time for the rest of the world to catch up. Remember, it took your whole life for things to become like they are; even once you are in total internal alignment about what you want (your mind, emotions, and actions are all on the same page), it will still take time for things to change.

    So to answer your question: people pretend to be something they’re not because they are lost, confused, and living into other people's expectations; OR consciously trying to change their lives for the better. The big clue to which it is: are they nasty, irritable, petty, negative or aggressive? They are the first kind of person. Are they fun, friendly, happy, positive and generally fun to be around? Then they are the second type of person.

    Keep us posted on how it turns out.

    Why do you think people pretend to be something they’re not? Feel free to comment down below!

    You are great, and I love you!

    about.me/bdavewalters

     


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