Andrew Furst

Remembering Past Lives? – Dialectic Two Step

Posted by in Dialectic Two-Step, Writings

Question: How is the remembrance of past lives compatible with anatta? Rebirth makes sense in the context of dependent arising and conditionality. We humans exist dependent on conditions. Everything had to come together to shape us. But Buddha remembered past lives instead of the conditions that made us born human (water, sun, soil, food, …). Does this make sense? Response: My opinion is that remembering past lives doesn’t make sense. Memory is a function of the brain. The brain stores data and synthesizes consciousness in remarkably complex and rich ways….read more

If You Were God – Modern Koans

Posted by in Modern Koans, Writings

Question: If you were God, what would you have done differently than the real one? Response: What if the answer was that we are all one in God and that we have participated, intentionally or not, in exactly what people perceive as God’s work? If you enjoyed this post,  please like and share. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. Modern Koans is an ongoing series that recognizes that good questions are often more important than their answers. The riddles of God are more satisfying than the solutions of man. ―…read more

Are Atheists and Agnostics Illogical Regarding the Spiritual Realm? – Dialectic Two Step

Posted by in Dialectic Two-Step, Writings

Question: Are atheists and agnostics illogical regarding the spiritual realm? Response: It depends. I presume that you’re talking about the truth or falsity of arguments about the existence of the spiritual realm. First a few points about logic. Logic applies to arguments An argument is logical or illogical based on its form. Not based on the truth of its assumptions. For example, you can have an argument that has all true assumptions, but still be illogical – e.g. a horse has four legs, some horses are brown, therefore there are…read more

Modern Koans – Why Right Concentration?

Posted by in Eightfold Path Series, Modern Koans, Writings

The Eightfold Path Series This is the one of several posts I will be offering titled the Eightfold Path Series. As I’ve reflected on my experience, I’ve come to see the Path as both the practice and the fruition. As we inch closer to realization of our true nature, we discover that the wisdom, ethics, and mindfulness prescribed by the Buddha are the most natural expression of our being. John Daido Loori Roshi’s book Invoking Reality was transformational for me. In it Roshi turns the path on it’s head in a way that uncovers it’s challenge…read more

Have Smartphones Made Us Happier? – Dialectic Two-Step

Posted by in Dialectic Two-Step, Writings

I would argue that if we look for happiness in smartphones, we’re doing it wrong. Happiness – a temporary thing – can come in two ways: The world lines up with our preferences (we get what we want or we avoid what we don’t want).  How often does this happen? We line up with the way the world is. This happens when we acknowledge that things don’t always work out the way we want and recognize that we can have a meaningful life if we avoid wallowing in disappointment If…read more

Modern Koans – Why Right Mindfulness?

Posted by in Eightfold Path Series, Modern Koans, Writings

The Eightfold Path Series This is the one of several posts I will be offering titled the Eightfold Path Series. As I’ve reflected on my experience, I’ve come to see the Path as both the practice and the fruition. As we inch closer to realization of our true nature, we discover that the wisdom, ethics, and mindfulness prescribed by the Buddha are the most natural expression of our being. John Daido Loori Roshi’s book Invoking Reality was transformational for me. In it Roshi turns the path on it’s head in a way that uncovers it’s challenge…read more

Can You Recognize Evidence For God? – Dialectic Two Step

Posted by in Dialectic Two-Step, Writings

Question: If you don’t know who or what God is, how will you recognize evidence for God? Response: Do you need to have knowledge of God in order to prove that God exists? <robot voice>alert, alert. you have successfully engaged the logic game, if you wish to play, your success requires that you follow the rules. If you break them, you need to accept correction or defeat.</robot voice> A claim of belief by one person or even a group of people does not constitute evidence. To make knowledge claim carries with it…read more

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