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Who has authorized this view of Buddhism?
Latter Day Buddhism


The Buddha himself invited people on all occasions to test him.

"Don't believe me because you see me as your teacher," he said. "Don't believe me because others do. And don't believe anything because you've read it in a book, either. Don't put your faith in reports, or tradition, or hearsay, or the authority of religious leaders or texts. Don't rely on mere logic, or inference, or appearances, or speculation.

The Buddha repeatedly emphasized the impossibility of ever arriving at Truth by giving up your own authority and following the lights of others. Such a path will lead only to an opinion, whether your own or someone else's.

The Buddha encouraged people to "know for yourselves that certain things are unwholesome and wrong. And when you do, then give them up. And when you know for yourselves that certain things are wholesome and good, then accept them and follow them."

The message is always to examine and see for yourself. When you see for yourself what is true -- and that's really the only way that you can genuinely know anything -- then embrace it. Until then, just suspend judgment and criticism.

The point of Buddhism is to just see. That's all.

-- See: Buddhism Plain and Simple
by Steve Hagen, 1997 Printing, pp 8 & 9, paragraphs 5 - 9.


In his final talk before his death the Buddha said: "Each of you be a light unto yourself; betake yourself to no external refuge. Hold fast onto Truth. Look not for refuge to anyone beside yourself.

You are the final authority. Not me. Not the Buddha. Not the Bible. Not the government. Not the president. Not Mom or Dad. You. No community of philosophers, scientists, priests, academicians, politicians, or generals -- no school, legislature, parliament, or court -- can bear responsibility for your life, or your words, or your actions. That authority is yours and yours alone. You can neither get rid of it nor escape from it.

-- See: Buddhism Plain and Simple
by Steve Hagen, 1997 Printing, pg 21, paragraph 7, pg 22, paragraph 1.


Truth or Reality is not something vauge, mysterious, or hidden. You don't have to go to someone else to find it -- not to a teacher, or a buddha, or your parents, or a priest or rabbi or shaman, or any authority whatsoever. Nor is it something you can look up in a book. Truth comes to us through seeing. To see is to Know.

Seeing needs no further verification. It's immediate and as one with Truth.

-- See: Buddhism Plain and Simple
by Steve Hagen, 1997 Printing, pg 27, paragraphs 2 & 3.


The teaching of the Buddha does not take what is set down in writing too seriously. Buddhist writings can be likened to a raft. A raft is a very handy thing to carry you across the water, from one shore to another. But once you've reached the other shore, you no longer need the raft. Indeed, if you wish to continue your journey beyond the shore, you must leave the raft behind.

Our problem is that we tend to fall in love with the raft. Before long we think, "This has been a very good raft; it has served me well. I want to hang on to it and take it with me as I continue my journey." But if we hang on to Buddhist teachings -- or any teachings -- they will ultimately become a hindrance. Buddhist teachings and writings can assist you, but you won't find Truth in them, as if Truth somehow resided in the Buddha's words. No words -- Buddha's, mine, or anyone else's -- can see for you. You must do that for yourself, as Buddha did while seated under a tree a hundred generations ago.

We cannot hold Truth with words. We can only see it, experience it, for ourselves.

-- See: Buddhism Plain and Simple
by Steve Hagen, 1997 Printing, pg 9, paragraph 8 and pg 10, paragraphs 1 & 3.
























Intro  Consider  Initial Q&A  In A Nutshell  Observations  Comments  Reflections  Quotes  Notes  Facebook 
The Aim of Inquiry  Inadequacy of Words  Suffering  What Am I?  The Illusion  Purpose  Seeking  Awakening  Acceptance  Other Quotes 


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