The Dalai Lama on Religion & Spirituality

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TruthSeeker
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The Dalai Lama on Religion & Spirituality

Post by TruthSeeker »

I believe there is an important distinction to be made between religion and spirituality. Religion I take to be concerned with belief in the claims to salvation of one faith tradition or another--an aspect of which is acceptance of some form of meta-physical or philosophical reality, including perhaps an idea of heaven or hell. Connected with this are religious teachings or dogma, ritual, prayers and so on. Spirituality I take to be concerned with those qualities of the human spirit--such as love and compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, a sense of responsibility, a sense of harmony, which bring happiness to both self and others.

-His Holiness the Dalai Lama
So, is Buddhism a religion? Can one be spiritual and religious at the same time or are these distinct entities? Any other thoughts?
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Lisa Simpson
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Post by Lisa Simpson »

That all depends on who you are asking. I'm Buddhist and for me, it's more of a philosophy than a religion. A way of life, if you will. Someone else may give you a different answer. By the Dalai Lama's definition, I am spiritual, not religious.

I just love the Dalai Lama, even though I don't quite like Tibetan Buddhism. There's just too much mysticism in it for me.
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TruthSeeker
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Post by TruthSeeker »

I agree about the Dalai Lama. I saw him when he was in town recently. He simply radiates joy and peace. It's lovely.

What I find interesting about the quote is how it applies to other religions. He seems to be suggesting (although this may just be my bias) that happiness lies in spirituality, as he defines it, rather than religion. Interesting.
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Atlas
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Post by Atlas »

I like to think he's trying to get us to think but doing in in a completely non confrontational way.

The statement was actually a real put down of religion.

My kindest metaphor of religion is that it's a battery. If we pull it inside it can drives our motors of destruction or ignite an illumination.

I believe, like the Dalai Lama, that an Enlightened one has little need of religion.