Why does Sam Harris associate with a stupid religion like Buddhism?

 
Larry Olson
 
Avatar
 
 
Larry Olson
Total Posts:  139
Joined  09-09-2015
 
 
 
12 June 2016 13:02
 

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/9e/0c/a8/9e0ca8fbe2e6017e3b76906fd213a4b0.jpg

Buddhism is actually a pathetic religion masquerading as a sensible one to gullible people

What’s that other dumbass tradition they have.. shaving their heads, so then when you duck under to get in your car your hair no longer can detect that you are going to hit your head because buddhists don’t understand basic nerve science…

Yeah Sam Harris, you disappoint..

Associating with Buddhism is absurd

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/9e/0c/a8/9e0ca8fbe2e6017e3b76906fd213a4b0.jpg

 
sojourner
 
Avatar
 
 
sojourner
Total Posts:  5970
Joined  09-11-2012
 
 
 
12 June 2016 13:20
 

Not sure what you’re referencing on either point there, are you just being silly? Women can attain enlightenment in Buddhism and I have no idea what the car thing is.

 
 
Cheshire Cat
 
Avatar
 
 
Cheshire Cat
Total Posts:  1579
Joined  01-11-2014
 
 
 
12 June 2016 14:44
 

Stay classy, Larry.

 
 
Hypersoup
 
Avatar
 
 
Hypersoup
Total Posts:  688
Joined  24-01-2013
 
 
 
17 June 2016 01:06
 

Buddhism: get a cheap hair cut, dont have any kids, and pretend you dont exist. An ideal soluiton to certain contemporary issues?

[ Edited: 17 June 2016 01:49 by Hypersoup]
 
 
sojourner
 
Avatar
 
 
sojourner
Total Posts:  5970
Joined  09-11-2012
 
 
 
18 June 2016 16:03
 

I have been mulling over Buddhism lately as I was distressed about Orlando and thinking about what “finding comfort in religion” is like when you’re a Buddhist. I think the description you give above, Hypersoup, applies more to Buddhism as experienced by monks living in poverty and born into those cultures. Buddhism in this country has some very distinct pros and cons, to my mind.


On the con side, there is often massive cross-over between Buddhism and new age “spirituality”, which can be an incredibly monetized and capitalized field that has little to do with the original texts (what we can glean of them, anyways) of the Buddha. I like Gabrielle Bernstein and Deepak Chopra a lot as people - as people with good skills, motivation, intelligence and good intent. That said, I have no idea what turning “your passion into a paycheck” or “quantum healing” has to do with Buddhism. And even for more traditional Buddhists, there’s this theme that Buddhism should kinda be a platform for evangelical liberal positions in a way that more mirrors the Christian tradition of “works”. But again, I just don’t think this is what the actual Buddha talked about. He pretty much said we’re in samsara and you should get right the hell out of it ASAP, period, not that you should spend your time helping to reduce carbon emissions. I’m often surprised, when I read about acts of ‘compassion’ in more eastern texts, how kinda - I dunno, I hate to say this, but “limited” I guess? - they seem. In Sri Ramakrisnwa’s autobiography he is described as “a fountain of infinite compassion” for telling a follower to give another one of his followers some water so that he could take some medicine. Mingyur Rinpoche describes his father as “compassionate as always” for putting a splint on one of his monks broken legs and giving him some medicine. I don’t mean to play down the amazing character of either one of those men, I think they’re tremendously inspiring - but it does stand out at me that in the west you would generally be considered something of a sociopath if you didn’t, at a minimum, give someone basic medical care that you were perfectly able to provide. So given the renunciate nature of Buddhism, I just don’t think building schools and hospitals and political lobbying groups is what that religion points to (although to be fair, this should also be true of Christianity to some extent - no thought for the morrow and all that - but both being equally modernized doesn’t particularly change my point here.) More traditional Buddhism strikes me as kinda cold (I suppose it wouldn’t seem that way to those who don’t feel much like a ‘separate self’, but for the rest of us) and more modern Buddhism strikes me as repackaged liberalism and modern psychology (don’t get me wrong, I’m not averse to liberalism or psychology, kudos to those who want to help people with them, but to my mind they are somewhat different concepts). My instinct, as an American living in 2016, is of course more towards the latter, but I do wonder - is that what Buddhism “really” is?


Aside from this, sometimes the dynamic in western Buddhism is kinda like drinking at a Todd Thrasher bar (If you don’t know who that is, he’s about who you’d expect someone with the name “Todd Thrasher” to be, or at least his bars are). You are paying people copious amounts of money to teach you so it’s not like they can be particularly horrible or tyrannical. On the other hand, they’re supposed to be far more wise and elite and authentic, so they can’t be too “one of the guys / gals” either. So, much like you can order a bitter $25 cocktail that is foaming in a way that suggests it was sprayed with a can of Mr. Bubbles for the privilege of having your waiter interact with you with thinly veiled contempt (but still feel kinda cool about it), it seems to me that many dharma teachers have to strike a weird balance between “I’m better than you” and “I’m totally the same as you, which makes the fact that you’re paying me kinda inexplicable”. Not all, by any means, but monetization has subtle impacts, I think.


On the pro side, I think that Buddhism is more practical for individuals when it comes to ‘action’ - practices to cultivate this or that or deal with this or that. To my mind, Christianity has traditionally been (ironically, given that Christianity does believe you’re a separate ‘soul’ and Buddhism does not) far more communal with fewer practices that speak to individualized needs. Those practices have also been researched in many cases, so even if Buddhism is not True true, it’s a fairly safe bet to say much of it is at least beneficial. And, while it may suffer a bit from a ‘free market’ approach in this country, I think it also gains from that in that this encourages a much more democratic approach to shaping what Buddhism ‘is’.   


It’s not clear to me exactly which parts of Buddhism Harris mentally “associates” himself with, but again, after this week, this thread interests me a bit more.

 
 
HarrisFan
 
Avatar
 
 
HarrisFan
Total Posts:  18
Joined  02-06-2015
 
 
 
03 February 2017 17:07
 
Hypersoup - 17 June 2016 01:06 AM

Buddhism: get a cheap hair cut, dont have any kids

Those are Buddhist monks/nuns. 

Not Buddhists in general.

As usual, the criticism of Buddhism is profoundly ignorant.

[ Edited: 03 February 2017 17:09 by HarrisFan]
 
Jefe
 
Avatar
 
 
Jefe
Total Posts:  7304
Joined  15-02-2007
 
 
 
15 February 2017 10:20
 

Clearly, Larry missed the sign pointing to the 8-fold path.

 
 
SkepticX
 
Avatar
 
 
SkepticX
Total Posts:  14817
Joined  24-12-2004
 
 
 
15 February 2017 16:55
 
Larry Olson - 12 June 2016 01:02 PM

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/9e/0c/a8/9e0ca8fbe2e6017e3b76906fd213a4b0.jpg

Buddhism is actually a pathetic religion masquerading as a sensible one to gullible people

What’s that other dumbass tradition they have.. shaving their heads, so then when you duck under to get in your car your hair no longer can detect that you are going to hit your head because buddhists don’t understand basic nerve science…

Yeah Sam Harris, you disappoint..

Associating with Buddhism is absurd

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/9e/0c/a8/9e0ca8fbe2e6017e3b76906fd213a4b0.jpg


Yup.

Buddhism is pure nonsense ... like basketball.

If you doubt this then how do you explain Dennis Rodman?