Did you know Buddhists believe in God?
Have I confused you?
Let me explain, my servants. When it comes to mushy thinking of today’s premiere religionists there’s no better place to mush than The Huffington Post’s religion section. I’ve said before that I love the HuffPo’s religion section, and today there’s an article that just makes me want to beam with more pride than ever before, which is impossible.
I refer to an article entitled, “Do Buddhists Believe in God?” by Lewis Richmond, a Buddhist writer and teacher. I hope he writes and teaches to the world, because I’ve totally screwed up his thinking.
I know, my servants. I know.
And apparently some Christians don’t know any better but to let mushy thinking go unchallenged. But let me explain.
Mr. Lewis starts his piece by relating a question put to him by a Christian talk show host on live radio: “Do you Buddhists believe in God?”
Stupid question, I know. But imagine Buddha’s surprise when Mr. Lewis said “yes!” This would also have surprised any other Buddhist, at least one of which answers truthfully and simply “no.” Here we read that the Buddhist refutation of the notion of a supreme God [is there any other kind???] is seen as a key distinction between Buddhism and other religions, and “belief in a Supreme God is eminently considered to pose a hindrance to the attainment of nirvana.” And here a truthful Bhikshu monk states in answer to the same question: “I hope you can see that God is not what Buddhism is about… ”
No. Refuted. Hindrance. Not what Buddhism is about. Why did Mr. Lewis say yes?
And in answer to the follow-up question, “How do you pray?” Mr. Lewis gave a perfectly incoherent refutation of his fibby answer: “We pray in silence to our divine nature.”
Do you see what’s happening here, my servants? My lies and confusion on truth and absolute truth allow silliness to pose as seriousness. No doubt many well-meaning no-nothings nodded their somber heads at this nonsense and thought, “that’s nice.”
It is nice, my servants. It is. It’s nice because it is total claptrap spouted unchallenged.
And it’s a lie. And I love lies. I’m the father of lies, you know.
In Mr. Lewis’ piece he explains. First, my son rationalizes his fibbiousness because:
I didn’t want to spend the whole time trying to explain what Buddhists believe.
Well, I suppose saying “no” would take slightly less time than saying “yes,” would it not?
But knowing that lies are lies even if they are dressed in well-meaning white, and, more importantly even if his “divine self” is the only divine to whom he must ultimately answer, Mr. Lewis tried some justificationization:
I sensed from the way she posed her question that all she really wanted to know was whether I was a person of religious conviction and belief — a person of faith. And I am.
Uh . . . huh? You sensed that? In your divine self, I suppose? She asked a simple question, Mr. Lewis. And you gave a misleadingly wrong answer. And do you really believe that “religious conviction and belief” = “belief in God”? Really?
And why the need to justify your little white now, Mr. Lewis? And why to all of us? Won’t your divine nature forgive you for this? Or does your divine nature even care?
Mr. Lewis acknowledges that his equally religious Buddhists would disagree with him. He is something of an outlyer, he thinks, because he was raised in a Christian church.
You see, growing up religious in a Christian church made him “comfortable with the word God.” And being comfortable with the word God makes Mr. Lewis really, really religious. He explains:
I’m an ordained Buddhist priest — a religious professional. My daily religious practice is the center of my life. I lead meditation groups, I am training and ordaining other priests. In that context, “Yes” is the best answer.
No. Actually, regardless of the context, no is the only truthful answer, Mr. Lewis. Who are you trying to fool?
Well, then that’s OK. Go ahead, then. What else can you tell us?
With respect to praying, Mr. Lewis, who apparently has no moral qualms, said:
So when I said to the radio host, “We pray in silence to reach our divine nature,” I was not just making that up. I knew that there is a long history in Christianity of the “prayer of silence.”
Ha ha ha ha ha.
Yes, Mr. Lewis, keep going. But I can tell you that the “long history in Christianity” is not just about a prayer of silence. It is about the object of those prayers. And they are not to “our divine natures.”
You see, Mr. Lewis, what you don’t know, and what I will ensure you never know, is that you don’t have a divine nature. You have the nature of a sinner, and but for the intervention of a true God in heaven in your life, resulting in your prayer to a true God who is not yourself, you will die in that un-divine nature.
And while you are comfortable with the word God, I hope you never become comfortable with the Word God, the eternal, living logos whom I also reject.
Whoops. Did I just risk losing Mr. Lewis to truth?
Probably not. Take it from me, my servants, the mind that thinks it is part of a divine nature rarely stoops to the level of humble servitude.
Ha ha ha ha ha.
My kingdom is chock-full of people of “religious conviction,” many of them raised in “Christian” churches.