End of the 7 Sets Series

Unlike the movies, you usually don’t get a box car. You snuggle in between a container and the lip of the car’s chassis, in the gap between the chassis frame and the container doors. It’s very dangerous — you can get killed. It’s also very illegal.

I hope this series has benefited you by presenting a hypnotherapist’s practical approach to the Buddha’s core teaching.

I consider the 7 Sets to be the Buddha’s core teaching.  To study the 7 Sets was useful to me because it is highly applied and specific.  The 7 Sets teaching is far more structured and nuanced than the “just mindfulness” or “just letting go” stuff that tends to circulate in his name.

I believe a hypnotist’s point of view is helpful because it looks to me like the Buddha did not exactly teach philosophy.  He taught how to cultivate selflessness to the point that it becomes possible to magically transcend the limitations that we, as embodied humans, implicitly assume are integral to consciousness.

The joy and delight in this work is that it makes one useful for humanity, and for all sentient beings.  I believe in enlightenment — in real enlightenment, that adorns Buddhalands, that dwells in Nirvana, and that provides a true release from the conditional existence that spurs suffering.

The Buddha did not teach “everyday enlightenment.”  He did not teach mood management.  I’m a pretty good hypnotist — I know mood management when I see it.  Mood management, everyday enlightenment, just letting go, and the quirky philosophy that compares Buddhism to quantum mechanics are all fine as far as they go.  But I do not believe they are the gift of the Buddha, and I believe the gift of the Buddha is transcendently valuable. More

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What is “Faith” Really? — A Commonly Misunderstood Word

“Faith” is sometimes understood as belief in a doctrine, sometimes as confidence a religious narrative or spiritual point of view. wp.me/p2ukOd-2s

A man praying at a Japanese Shintō shrine.

A man praying at a Japanese Shintō shrine.

Those understandings of “faith” are OK.  But I want to say they’re OK as far as they go.  Consider why faith is essential in the battle against evil.

I do not personally believe that strong faith is essential to ensure one’s own salvation.  There is no punishment that arises from lack of faith.

Faith is incredibly powerful in the confrontation with evil and in delivering one from suffering.  Deep faith causes one to be immune and impervious to ills and afflictions of all kinds. More

God’s Love Is Unconditional

 

God’s love for humanity is unconditional.  We’re his children.  He does not love me more than you.  He does not love Jesus more than Hitler, does not love you less than Jesus or the Buddha.  God is well pleased with Jesus, and doubtless he is displeased with Hitler.  This is because of how they related to God’s other children.

In cultivating unconditional love for humanity, I am seeking to make myself more Godlike.  I did not understand that until I was well on my way.  I just decided it was what I wanted to do, not for religious reasons.  In fact, I was an atheist at the time.

I don’t think much of sympathy.  I live in a sleeping bag under a tarp.  I break into out of the way places when it rains sometimes. Sometimes when I beg for money people see me and flinch and look away, because seeing a beggar makes them feel pain.  I myself do not hurt. I don’t feel pain at begging for money and it doesn’t harm me.  I kind of want to tell them I’m doing fine and there’s no reason for them to hurt, but it’s a long conversation.

I talked to a Christian woman once who felt pain at the thought of the damned.  She cried while she talked to me.  I told her the same thing I’d like to tell those people who flinch when they see me and look away:

Sympathy is an inherently evil emotion.  Get rid of it.  Cultivate compassion instead.  It’s much better, much stronger stuff.

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