Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Buddhism and me

(Continuing from my last post 'Where is God'?)

Now don't get me wrong I do believe in heaven. The universe is so complex and fascinating that there has to be something else when we die, there just has to be. We do not simply blink out of existence. Maybe God created the earth and gave us it and decided to leave us to our own devices; live and learn. Maybe he (or she) decided long ago to cut us loose, let us live and learn from our mistakes in life, have our lives be what makes us into the people we are for heaven. If that is the case then maybe God simply cannot pick and choose when to interfere, when to strike those down who deserve it, when to make his (or her) presence known.

When I met with my pastor for the first time he asked me if I thought I would be going to heaven when I died. I answered yes. he was a bit surprised that I was so sure as most people answer that question by saying "I don't know". I explained that once in 1997 a few months after my Grandpa passed away he came to me in a dream. This was no ordinary dream; I cannot relate into words why I feel this one was different it just was. I knew then that my Grandpa had saw my sorrow and guilt from heaven and he came to me to show me he was fine, and to tell me that he loved me. I awoke from that dream and cried and felt better than I had in months. So if my Grandpa was somewhere else after death he had to be in heaven. He was a great man and did good in his life; he was also quietly Christian and kept his beliefs to himself (I later found out), so the only logical conclusion is that he was in heaven. So if I live my life like he did I will be there too when my time comes. I don't know if my Pastor completely agreed with my analysis but it is what it is and no one can change my mind about that. But what if there was another explanation...

So after my Uncles death and my daughters statement about God I decided to study other faiths and see if I could find an answer. So I came to study Buddhism. Buddhism does not deal with heaven or God, and is more of a belief system than a religion. Buddhism deals with karma and reincarnation. If you do good in this world and create good karma you will be rewarded in this life or the next. And reincarnation means that when our journey ends in this life we will have another one. And if we create good karma in this life we will enjoy a good life in the next. But if we create bad karma in this life or a previous one it will affect us later in this life or the next. So in that theory if we die young in this life it could mean that karma has dictated that. Maybe the reason why someone dies unexpectedly is because they did something bad in this life or previous lives. For example: Maybe a man who dies suddenly at the age of 40, but was for all intents and purposes a good person, died because he took a life in a previous life. Maybe he was a solider fighting in a war in another life and because he killed a 40 year old man then he will die in this life as a 40 year old. Its karma coming full circle. But because he was a good man in this life he will live a full life in the next.

I honestly don't know what to believe. I call myself a Buddhist Christian because I believe in certain aspects of both but cannot commit fully to either. One day I will find out for myself, just hopefully not anytime soon.

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