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Enlightened or Divine?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by SalixIncendium, Oct 27, 2017.

?
  1. Enlightened

    5 vote(s)
    35.7%
  2. Divine

    1 vote(s)
    7.1%
  3. Just humans with good moral values

    1 vote(s)
    7.1%
  4. Other

    7 vote(s)
    50.0%
  1. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium सच्चितानन्द
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    I, along with seven other members from our local Vedanta group, sat down for a discussion with Swami Sarvadevananda yesterday. In that discussion, we spoke about figures such as Krishna, Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad, and a few others. Swami Sarvadevananda as well as a few others that were there yesterday contend that these people are direct incarnations of God. I hold the opinion that these are enlightened people who have gone through rebirths as the rest of us have and through these rebirths, became enlightened.

    What are your thoughts on this? Are these figures enlightened through multiple rebirths? Or were they sent down from God for a single incarnation to spread God's word?

    Apologies if I did not name a figure in your religion, but a pretty comprehensive list can be found here.
     
  2. Mister Silver

    Mister Silver Faith's Nightmare

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    Voted:
    Just humans with good moral values

    Though I have my doubts that Jesus even existed.
     
  3. Epic Beard Man

    Epic Beard Man Bearded Philosopher

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    I would contend that these figures although human, come from divine providence as in the sense that Muhammad, Jesus, are divine in some way although they're not God. I believe they're divinely inspired, but that is all.
     
  4. sayak83

    sayak83 Well-Known Member
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    I kind of don't care. I appreciate good ideas and insights from where I get them.. whether it comes from Buddha, Krishna, Einstein or a pair of nesting crows in the tree in front of my windows.
     
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  5. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva

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    Though I agree with @sayak83 for the most part, I do take exception to having several of the names on that list you have provided. For the record, I never include Muhammad in the same league as Buddha, Krsna or Christ. In my view, he was a very long way from enlightened.
     
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  6. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist Veteran Member

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    Honestly? Only The Buddha and buddhas are enlightened. Krishna can't "become" enlightened; he's god. Jesus and Muhammad aren't enlightened. They received messages from god as son or prophet but only christ, in christianity, is an incarnation of god's dictations. Muhammad gave it as written not an incarnation of what's written.

    I'd say Jesus and Muhammad are still going through samsara. Neither of them follow The Buddha so their teachings aren't specific to how to end rebirth or cyclic existence.

    My question is, just because these people are famous, written in old books, and have a great influence on those after they have died, what makes them "great" or divine while present day humans 2,000 years later are mundane?

    When did the divine switch turn off?
     
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  7. Saint Frankenstein

    Saint Frankenstein ᛘᛁᛏᚾᛁᚴᚼᛏ᛫ᛋᚢᚾ
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    Other - mythologised human beings no more special than anyone else.
     
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  8. atanu

    atanu Member
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    I think this is a difficult and subjective judgemement and is also prone to generate varying concepts due to differences in understanding of the terms from school to school.

    For Vaisnavas in India, the list of avatars is pretty closed with only 9 or 10 names. Some include Buddha and some do not.
    Dashavatara - Wikipedia

    Then there are categories of avatars.
    Six Categories Of Avatars

    The Ramakrishna order, of which you are talking about, OTHT includes teachers of all religions in the list. I prefer this, although some Hindus, from feeling of exclusivity, are averse to this thinking.
    The Avatar: God in Human Form | Vedanta Society of Southern California

    Ultimately, however, some hold that there is nothing that is not divine, no time that is not divine and no place that is not divine.

    Best.
     
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  9. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta and Spiritualist and Pantheist
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    My personal favorite Satya Sai Baba is not listed so I am going to pout.

    But seriously, I think each one deserves their own story. Generally I think these figures are advanced incarnations returning to earth to guide mankind's spiritual advancement.
     
  10. wizanda

    wizanda One Accepts All Religious Texts
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    In my opinion:

    We're called ascended masters for a reason...

    It is questioned that Buddha is an incarnation of Vishnu, Yeshua is an incarnation of YHVH, Lao Tzu is an incarnation of the 3 Pure Ones.

    Everything is within God (panentheism), thus the difference between these beings finding enlightenment is that they inherently realize the 0neness within.

    Everyone of us can connect the same, and recognize our divinity/infinite nature; yet many of us stay attached to the Maya around us.

    In my understanding no one is an incarnation of God, that is a lie made up by religious people who don't understand Heaven; anything that is physically seen manifest is not the CPU/Brahman/Most High.

    Krishna for example says it is a manifestation from Brahman; yet Brahman is the ultimate reality beyond our normal comprehension at that time.... Now tho we can call it a CPU, which makes it much clearer.

    Thus someone seeing them self as a player inside the Matrix/Maya with an infinite scope, then has the capabilities to ascend it.

    Once a being has ascended it, they're far more likely to be sent back into it, and recognize they're within the Maya/Matrix. :innocent:
     
  11. Father

    Father Devourer of Truth

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    I vote Enlightened but not of any supernatural significance.
    Enlightened meaning holding a Piece of Truth and Knowledge that can gather and move people and in turn Humanity.
    Jesus gave revolutionary values and ideals. quite possibly the foundation of socialism in a sense. his Enlightenment was that of the people
    Buddha giving similar things as Jesus, if Jesus's ideas are the foundation of western civilization I would argue Buddha is the foundation of the east. his Enlightenment that of Balance and Nature
    Muhammad was a WarLord who knew how to use people. and divine mandate to get others to do as he wants. he sort of reminds me of Nobunaga a bit though I can't really state why. His Enlightenment that of understanding how to use the tool of religion as a weapon and foundation, probably even better in speed than that of other religion.

    as for a key member and if I recall the perpetrator of Deism it would be the Philosopher Voltaire, who was an inspiration to the founding father Thomas Jefferson who was a Deist.
    Voltaire was a cheeky little twat holding a similar atmosphere to Ben Franklin. he was somewhat of a comedic in a sense and held the habit of living on the edge of border's in case his work angered the government so he could border hop. he was a grand philosopher by my regard and held the Enlightenment of Sight. in the sense he looked at how the world worked and in turn nature to deduce a God of non-interference and absence.

    for someone to be Enlightened they must hold a ideal or ideals that differ from the time and can be a foundation for others. it must have a large role in history and in turn pull and part Humanity
     
    #11 Father, Oct 28, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2017
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  12. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium सच्चितानन्द
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    Since you both answered similarly, I'm addressing both responses in the same post.

    Likely more than most, I can appreciate the apathetic approach here, but I'm not sure we actually addressed the question asked in the OP (perhaps @YmirGF did in a subtle way). So just to satiate my curiosity...

    For argument's sake, I'm going to narrow down this list to Buddha and Krishna. Do you think these individuals were incarnates of God (however you perceive It [if at all]), or humans who achieved absolute enlightenment through the cycle of rebirths?
     
  13. sayak83

    sayak83 Well-Known Member
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    There are significant metaphysical differences between what Buddha and Krishna said both about themselves and about the nature of reality. When I read the Gita or the Buddhist sutras, I find it more fruitful to take both individuals as they presented themselves in their own words rather than creating overarching theories that try to harmonize them. For me they are revered teachers and inspirers.That is sufficient.
     
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  14. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    I don't think you can categorise like that. There is a continuum of wisdom, enlightenment, whatever you want to call it. Besides that, it's diverse, Wise men, fools, tricksters, fiction that over time turned to someone 'real'. Each individual soul who has ever inhabited a physical body, and taken on a temporary ego/personality is unique. Unless we had the ability to meld with their minds, and time travel, we'll never know. So we'll never know.

    Personally, I don't believe in direct incarnations of God at all. If god's energy concentrated into one person, the physical body would explode.
     
  15. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    I do not believe that we know enough about the people in your list to formulate a useful generalization (other than "not divine").
     
  16. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva

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    While I don't believe in enlightenment, per se, I do think that both these individuals were a cut above the rest. Likewise, my view of reincarnation is of a more non-linear process which makes that view radically different from the norm. I'm more inclined to say that both understood the nature of reality far more than that of their peers, rather than claiming they were incarnations of "god". That said, I do believe in a variation of the concept of the avatar, say, of those who are born with a clearer view of reality which they are uniquely gifted to express in meaningful terms. Here, think of Mozart's of their genre.
     
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  17. idav

    idav Being
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    Enlightenment is the same as knowledge of the absolute in my view. I don't think of it as avatars coming to earth, divinity, creation, is already within all of life, the spark is there in every living thing.
     
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