ocha_no_hanashi (ocha_no_hanashi) wrote in buddhistmodern,

Common ground.

"The universe is in change, life is an opinion." -Marcus Aurelius

"The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there." -Yasutani Roshi

"Freedom is secured not by the fulfilling of one's desires, but by the removal of desire." -Epictetus

Second Noble Truth of Buddhism: Suffering is caused by desire.

"Things are not what they appear to be: nor are they otherwise." -Surangama Sutra

"Be master of mind rather than mastered by mind." -Zen Saying

"No man is free who is not master of himself." -Epictetus

I sense a lot of common points of thought in Buddhist and Graeco-Roman Stoic philosophies. They have common ancestors as Buddhism and Greek philosophies arose from Indo-European cultures. I would go so far as to say that various philosophical schools around the world concluded the same points about reality. Superficial cultural decorations distinguish philosophies that are otherwise fundamentally the same. Buddhism, Stoicism and pre-gentrified Taoism (philosophical Taoism as opposed to institutionalized religion) generally reveal the same truths about the universe and the human experience -- ideas of finding truth in no truth, in discarding the self in order to understand things as they are (objective detachment) and universal altruism and genuine compassion. Obviously the cultural settings were vastly set apart from one another yet around the same centuries Buddha, Zeno of Citium and Lao Tzu came to very similar conclusions about life and the nature of the universe.

"Late at night, when everyone is quiet, sit alone and gaze into
the mind; then you notice illusion ending and reality appearing.
You gain a great sense of potential in this every time. Once you
have noticed reality appearing yet find that illusion is hard to
escape, you also find yourself greatly humbled. -Hong Yingming, Reflections of Tao (c.1600AD)"

"If you persist in trying to attain what is never attained (It is Tao's gift), if you persist in making effort to obtain what effort cannot get, if you persist in reasoning about what cannot be understood, you will be destroyed by the very thing you seek. To know when to stop, to know when you can get no further by your own action, this is the right beginning!" -Chuang Tzu (c.4th century B.C.)

"Who can enjoy enlightenment and remain indifferent to suffering in the world? This is not in keeping with the Way. Only those who increase their service along with their understanding can be called men and women of Tao." Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

"However innumerable sentient beings are, I vow to save them." -Bodhisatva Vow

Now granted we could really dig into the various schools of thought and academically determine my earlier statements false through quality research and a proper philosophical approach but this isn't meant to be academic. It is just a 'sense' I get after sifting through various philosophies and writings over the years.
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