Some people believe trees to be sentient beings. Like for example the beautiful old oak that’s stood for hundreds of years. What must those trees have seen? Certain religious groups use trees as energy points believing them to possess magical healing powers but what actually makes them sentient? In Buddhism, sentient beings are beings with consciousness, sentience, or in some contexts life itself. Sentient beings are composed of the five aggregates, or skandhas: matter, sensation, perception, mental formations and consciousness. Trees according to Buddhism, are qualitatively different from humans and sentient nonhumans, in that they are certainly alive, but they don’t have interests or the ability to learn from experience. A tree may react to sunlight, water, the changing seasons and other stimuli etc but that does not necessarily mean it’s sentient.
What are your thoughts on the subject? Let’s have a conversation! – Are trees sentient beings? If so why?
Please God help me! My life is hard and I can’t see a way forward. If you help me God, I promise to pray more.
Words I’m sure are familiar to almost every believer and non believer in God. As a Buddhist, I don’t accept the God concept, but even I’ve begged for help in times where there’s seemed little hope. Looking down from my 17th floor window I see road rage from people who feel it’s their ‘God Given’ right to get to work first. Horns beeping, sirens wailing, rushing to traffick accidents. There’s news on the TV about a girl who left Britain at 15yrs to join ISIS and now wants to come back. The man who got stabbed whilst trying to rescue a stranger in trouble & the political war on Brexit. So much for a single mind to cope with and its only 7am. But tonight in the silence of darkness, down on their knees begging God for forgiveness, to make the child they hit during a fit of road rage pull through. To show mercy on the Jihadi bride & to sort out the problems created by Brexit. They’ll all be there on their knees evading personal responsibility, expecting God to suck up all their problems and absolve them like a Dyson vacuum cleaner. But if their prayers aren’t answered, we all know who’s to blame don’t we?
So here’s today’s discussion thread… If there is indeed a God, why expect him to constantly clean up the carnage created by man/woman?
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This is exactly what I’m doing now! This is my experience of reconnecting when all hope seemed to have gone. When things seem tough, when you feel you can’t move any further and all energy has gone – surrender. It worked for me & I know it will work for you!
Many with an interest in Buddhism, hope to meet with HH The Dalai Lama or HH The Karmapa even if only for a few minutes. But what’s to be learned by those fortunate enough?
In 2010 I had the opportunity to do that very thing. Something many people only dream of – meeting his Holiness the 17th Karmapa on a one-to-one basis. It came out of the blue, totally unplanned from a young girl I’d been helping with English language. It turned out, her husband is the bodyguard of his Holiness the Dalai Lama, and in return for my kindness she wanted to arrange a one to one appointment with his Holiness the Karmapa. It would have been The Dalai Lama if he hadn’t been out of the country. Of course I accepted the offer, not wishing to appear ungrateful. But in situations such as this, I would have preferred to have something to say, questions to ask and something constructive to base my appointment on. The time came quickly, in fact it was the following day, so even if I’d wanted to think something up I didn’t have time. Arriving early afternoon in Norbulingka the home of his Holiness, I was shown into a small basic room with only a short wait, before being shown into something far
It’s a funny word control. Full of illusion, power & submission.
When we become attached to situations, things or ideas, naturally we’re going to stress about losing them because we believe we own them. Then they begin to dominate our lives as if they’ve taken over that very ownership until we’re terrified of pretty much everything. Here’s a great example:
You’ve seen a car you love, yours is way past it’s time now and you’re on the look out for a new one. This car is shiny, new with great mileage and will be the envy of the street. Every night you look to make sure it hasn’t been sold and then you buy it. That dream is now reality – it’s yours. But you’d forgotten about bad drivers on the road and you guard that car with your life. You’re out there making sure nobody has scratched it, you have it alarmed to the hilt and woe betide anyone who gets too close. That car is no longer the love of your life, it’s your personal responsibility it preoccupies most of your time. The constant worry about losing it, someone damaging it or even it breaking down, is haunting you.
In reality though according to Buddhist Science, everything is impermanent & empty (void of self) which actually means, nothing exists in the way we see it whether it’s material, phenomena or human . Everything will inevitably end or perish at some point. Given this idea, there doesn’t really seem much point in stressing out over things does there? But then not everyone’s Buddhist.
whats your take on why we stress about things beyond our control?
“You wouldn’t catch me going up in that lift” they said. “Being so high up, anything could happen” they said – and they’re right!
Some see life through my eyes as terrifying, they’ve even said it to my face. What a gift it is though, to be living on the 17th floor. Standing on my balcony, the view is incredible and they’re so right – anything could indeed happen. Not only can I see the whole of the city & further, an abundance of trees present too many shades of green to even count. As spring approaches, peregrine falcons take flight after hatching their young, and circle in the distance in search of pigeons separated from their group. Sometimes I hold my breath as they come right outside my window. At night, glistening jewels that are street lights & houses, dominate the landscape taking me on a journey of wild imagination but not until my mind & body have bathed in the image of fiery orange/yellow sunsets.
Many perceptions exist about the existence of God – who he is, what form he takes & how he created the world etc….
It all depends I guess on which teachings you live by. Although Buddhism stands with a great respect for all religions, it doesn’t recognise God as creator. Here’s my dilemma on the existence of God which I hope you might help with…….
If as many believe, God created the Universe – where was he when he did so? If God is a person (Many address him as the Father) then from whom was he born? And doesn’t this imply the existence of a universe at the time of his birth? If as many believe, God is an energy Omnipotent & Omnipresent, where did that energy exist when it created itself?
I’d love to have a conversation and hear your thoughts – let’s have the debate 😊