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About SirPalomides

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  1. Real and Supernatural World

    ACAB includes archons
  2. Sakya Trichen Rinpoche Longevity Practice

    Not an expert but white Tara practice is associated with health. You could probably find the sadhana for this particular practice publicly available somewhere if not online. An empowerment might not even be needed (there are many tantric practices which are offered to the public nowadays without empowerment). My understanding of these public empowerments is that they’re more like blessings and not quite the same as the empowerment you would get as a committed disciple. Formally they are the same but if you really wanted to get the full benefit you would be expected to adhere to a guru/ lineage (via refuge ceremony), undergo the rigorous ngondro practices, and other pretty serious stuff.
  3. Women in Eastern Tradition (taboo)

    The funny thing about ancient traditions is that they’re usually not that ancient; and when they are, they’ve been altered, remixed, and reinterpreted many times over the ages, even by people trying very hard to be “orthodox”. Maybe the biggest enemy of various spiritual scammers and gurus is an independent investigation of religious, philosophical, or esoteric history.
  4. Everyone post some favorite quotes!

    “No girls or goldware were harmed in the making of this empire.”
  5. Women in Eastern Tradition (taboo)

    I'm beginning to think it's a bad idea to say "Buddhism teaches x about women" when Buddhism is so complex and diverse. That said, some very popular texts like the Lotus Sutra or the Infinite Life Sutra clearly work from a broadly held assumption that to become a Buddha, one must first be a man. That is not the same as saying "women can't become Buddhas"; it means that women can become Buddhas... by first becoming men, as seen with the case of the Lotus Sutra's dragon girl, or Amitabha's vow that women would be reborn in his Pure Land as men. My sense is that, like many philosophers through the ages, the authors of these texts saw their present social conditions as expressions of some eternal law; it wasn't so much that they hated women but they couldn't imagine a society where most women were not profoundly oppressed, so when they said to women, "You can be a man in the next life!" they really thought they were doing them a favor.
  6. Gods don't bark in Blue Sound

    The murmuring guillotine feasts on the turning gate, me boys.
  7. Crystals - no effect ? good ? bad ?

    The occult properties of stones and minerals is a very old theme at least in western esotericism. I don’t know much about it or to what extent new age crystal theory descends from or ignores those ancient traditions. It does seem to me that the human and environmental cost behind such objects is relevant. The amount of suffering embedded in many everyday objects too is a pretty horrifying contemplation. As far as occult properties of various objects my thinking is somewhat akin to that of Proclus and other Neoplatonists who saw everything as manifesting from the overflowing plenitude of the One; by virtue of this everything bears a inseparable link to the One, and even the most despised objects can symbolize the highest currents. Proclus applied this thinking to Homer and other poets, finding profound realities symbolized is material that, on its surface, seemed absurd or unenlightened. Such hidden connections are the highest work of poetry or of a poetic mindset. I think it’s better than hunting for rare or expensive materials.
  8. Differences between dualism and non-dualism

    Yeah, I too find it hard to square the amazing claims made about tantric or Zen practice with the behavior of its enlightened gurus. And the Catholic church could really take some notes from the twisted arguments used to excuse such stuff.
  9. Differences between dualism and non-dualism

    I respect his rigor here but I wonder if Bhikkhu Bodhi would use the same language today, particularly that suggesting the teaching in the Pali scriptures is the true Buddhism. This essay was written in 1998; we know that a few years later he came to live in Chinese-American Mahayana monasteries in an atmosphere of mutual respect, up to the present day.
  10. Benjamin Hoff's "Tao Te Ching"

    I have no idea, but in my experience with oft-retranslated books (Laozi, Bible, etc). usually claims about a new translation blowing open some previously obscured quality of the text prove to be exaggerated, if not entirely empty. Moreover, when we are dealing with an ancient, influential text such as the DDJ, which has taken a life of its own in the hands of numerous scribes and interpreters, the way the text has been carried on and read throughout the ages is more important than trying to uncover the author's true intent, which is probably impossible anyway.
  11. Benjamin Hoff's "Tao Te Ching"

    Haven't read it, but it looks like Hoff is certain that he has found the Real Meaning of the text, unlike all those other sillies, and moreover has seen fit to remove entire chapters. Based on that it sounds like another exercise in self-aggrandizement and marketing in the Tao Te Ching mini-industry.
  12. ch 3 - a totalitarian dark place?

    I believe the earliest extant commentary on the DDJ is that by Hanfeizi, who indeed interpreted it as advocating his legalist approach to statecraft.
  13. Visualization has been a major part of Daoist magic since, well, forever I guess. Sanskrit and even Buddhist stuff is pretty normal in Daoist practices, especially in the more folksy “heterodox” strands. I don’t believe Maoshan is classified as “red hat” but it seems they are in some respects closer to that spectrum than to Zhengyi, Quanzhen, etc.
  14. Qi Gong and Tibetan Yogas?

    Jade maidens? Or is that more for alchemists?