Even if it were possible to trace every event/phenonema right back to the Big 
Bang - a belief in God is neither required nor a logical result of doing so. To 
a Buddhist, conceptual thinking in relation to phenonema is transcended and a 
more material, empirical method can be employed (zazen springs to mind in this 
sense). If you take a look around the room where you are now you`ll see lots of 
phenonema (actually, everything you see is phenonema). Same with all your 
senses. Can you give meaning to all you see, hear, touch etc? Does the feel of 
your bum on the seat have meaning? Does the taste of your last 
cigarette/meal/drink have meaning? Does the sound of the air-conditioner 
have meaning? You probably wouldn`t even notice these small (insignificant?) 
sensations unless they were pointed out because, quite frankly, we`d go insane 
if we noticed all thse things and attached meanings to them. However, the more 
noticeable phenonema we tend to give meanings
 to: a faimily member dies on Christmas Day, a comet is visible on your child`s 
birthday etc. Again, a theist will colour these (selected) events with a 
supernatural twist, but in Buddhism they are all `just` events. We can`t 
call it "senseless stupidity" because that judges the events too subjectively. 
Even less so are they "unconnected". This is what interdependent origination is 
trying to point out. To give every phenonema a meaning doesn`t make sense 
because each phenonema is conditioned and interconnected in an infinite number 
of  ways. According to Buddhism, you can`t take one event and give it some 
divine/supernatural meaning (although we try) and isolate it from a preceding 
conditional event. All lines drawn this way are purely arbitary and just a 
convenient way to label the meaningless `meaningful`. This doesn`t result in 
cold detachment, but gives the observer/experiencer of phenonema a better sense 
of equaninimity. After all, Buddhism
 isn`t interested in metaphysical explainations, but in ending suffering only.
Mike.
----- Original Message ----
From: Al <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Thursday, 3 July, 2008 7:15:53 PM
Subject: Re: [Zen] Dear Bill


From: mike brown >to give any phenonema a sense of purpose would require
giving that phenonema a sense of purpose right back to the Big Bang. So
there. >

Which is exactly what a belief in God means. You are saying that in the
Buddhist concept it is all just senseless stupidity and mindless unconnected
events?

 


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