Whether there be prophecies, they shall fail;
whether there be tongues, they shall cease;
whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
But when that which is perfect is come,
then that which is in part shall be done away.
When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood
as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became
a man, I put away childish things.
1 Corinthians 13
“BEING CRITICAL OF BUDDHISM ISN’T EASY. Buddhism is the most likable of the major religions, and Buddhists are the perennial good guys of modern spirituality. Beautiful traditions, lovely architecture, inspiring statuary, ancient history, the Dalai Lama; what’s not to like?
Everything about Buddhism is just so—nice. No fatwahs or jihads, no inquisitions or crusades, no terrorists or pederasts, just nice people being nice. In fact, Buddhism means niceness. Nice-ism.
At least, it should.
Buddha means Awakened One, so Buddhism can be taken to mean Awake-ism. Awakism. It would therefore be natural to think that if you were looking to wake up, then Buddhism, i.e., Awakism, would be the place to look.
THE LIGHT IS BETTER OVER HERE
Such thinking, however, would reveal a dangerous lack of respect for the opposition. Maya, goddess of delusion, has been doing her job with supreme mastery since the first spark of self-awareness flickered in some monkey’s brainbox, and the idea that the neophyte truthseeker can just sign up with the Buddhists, read some books, embrace some new concepts and slam her to the mat would be a bit on the naive side, (as billions of sincere but unsuccessful seekers over the last twenty-five centuries might grudgingly attest).
On the other hand, why not? How’d this get so turned around? It’s just truth. Shouldn’t truth be, like, the simplest thing? Shouldn’t someone who wants to find something as ubiquitous and unchanging as truth be able to do so? How can anyone manage to not find truth? And here’s this venerable organization supposedly dedicated to just that very thing, even named for it, and it’s a total flop.
So what’s the problem?