Catholic vs. Buddhist - 2017-01-24 - Lama Jigme Gyatso

Author Recorded Tuesday January 24th, 2017

There are 2 episodes in the Versus:Buddhist series.

This is my first ever Skype interview. I am happy with the sound quality. I contacted Lama Jigme Gyatso after I saw his interview on the Fallen State with Jesse Lee Peterson. I enjoyed our chat. • Support the CVS Podcast: • Be a guest on a livestream:

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These YouTube transcripts are generated automatically and are therefore unformatted and replete with errors.
hello this is vomiting makiato and you're listening to Catholic versus Buddhist please tell the listener a little bit about who you are what you believe and why you believe it my name is Lama and jigna gyatsu that translates through the bed into English as ocean of courage teacher in the path to enlightenment you got a mama taught that essentially each Lama is his own lineage which means as a llama Irie don't represent the NEMA or the rimae or Tibetan Buddhists or Buddhist at large I just represent my personal experience in this moment and if someone has only spent decades that in Buddhism but also gal ism I no longer believe in belief belief ostensibly is a contrivance a rigidity of both intellect and emotion and it's usually used consciously or unconsciously as an N run towards a specific goal the problem is to truly complete a lot ego such as full enlightenment or great sainthood one means to transcend that rigidity and dwell and state of vulnerable fluid centered spontaneity which is in direct opposition to the rigidity which is the foundation of safe and such a spontaneity we follow the information where it leads us and it's not non linear path it is a circuitous path what comes to mind for me are some of the great Catholic saints two or mystics and what they said is that that rigid belief is a temporary thing it's like a ladder that you climb in n you discard it you kick it away once you've reached that enlightenment that you're talking about so the great things I think are in with you that belief in and of itself is not the thing of course the great irony is that when it comes to politics so when it comes to the spiritual path the great Saints are seldom people with power they do not chase after power they simply are men and women of wisdom and love however those least worthy of leadership aspire to it with the most ferocity I think if you read the lives of the Pope's you'll see that the great Pope's didn't want to be elected they resisted the charge that was foisted on them sometimes to the point of running back ups and out into their little cave I am certainly a San of our current Pope okay yeah he says he's a popular guy there's a lot of criticism on the right yeah which I find amusing I don't put myself right or left I just consider myself Christian and left and right aren't really that useful I usually ask my guests a little bit about their past can you talk a little bit about your childhood it was there any connection with God or religion Buddhism we discuss the fine aggregate of clinging to pain in the causes of pain and in reverse order the first would be mood and the second would be story and so many of the great Saints only go in the story to illustrate a point because the price of going in the story is to sever ourselves from the here and the now which is where we make contact with the Holy Spirit or in terms of Buddhism dejar Micaiah I actually came to Christianity through solecism I don't know if you know what that is so Susan if i recall correctly is the school of thought that says we can only really know reality through our self through our perceptual organs and our filters upon those perceptual organs am I getting close to it yeah the actual word is the combination of toward Soleil it's a only I am so it's all about me me me I am you know I don't know if you know in the Old Testament when God reveals his true name to Moses he said I am so that's the God that I worship I am but at one point I thought that I was I am that's what solecism is that was very elegant distillation can you relate as a Buddhist bernal well I love the first movie The Matrix in the middle part of the movie he's confronted with his identity as the one and he rejection he was he just doesn't feel like he's up for the task in the words of the Oracle and a paraphrase you've got the gift but maybe you're waiting for your next life and it wasn't until he found something more than himself that his mentor's life was in danger then he was able to get out of his own way and become the one and my understanding is that being in our own way is a common denominator of the human condition and that compassion can rescue us from that and compassion is about other the highest compassion is spontaneous non referential it comes from a place of central spontaneity so when we practice the union is sent in spontaneity and compassion it's the opposite of South Scism where we are just continuously flowing and automatically meeting means directly or indirectly and to me that's the juicy stuff that's the stuff that makes my mouth water some Mahayana Buddhists use the phrase Buddha nature I think we could talk st. Francis associate nature there are so many wonderful archetypes many of the stories of san francis are wonderfully inspiring and they can fuel our growth where is the morality in Buddhism and where is the free will where does that come or does it exist at all okay so that's an excellent question now free littles typically a question of theistic religions and a religion that's non-theistic that really isn't the question so let's deal with morality so most people are familiar with Buddha's first sermon maybe this has been talking humanities is basically this four truths and eight sub points before ideas are there suffering it's not renamon has a cause there is freedom from eternity of suffering it too is not random it also has causes those causes can fit into three headings which would be in sight action and meditation and so those can flash out into a total of eight different points and so under the morality a great buddhist saint named comments on a simplified the hundreds of morality scriptures and to just four points to maintain an enthusiasm for the path to maintain our strive for harmlessness number three to strive for sharing kindness and then before rational devotion for once teacher are the teachings that's the essence of all the hundreds of moralistic or ethical rules that may or may not have been inspired over the ages there is a passage in the New Testament which I've forgotten perhaps you remember which one it is where it says the essence of the law is love I think it's in the Gospels when I devote jus asks Jesus what is the greatest law is there were supposed to love thy neighbor as thyself yeah he said that the first law is to love God with all your heart strength minds and soul and the second one is like it love your neighbor as yourself that's wonderful because you can think of devotion as a vertical relationship you can think of love for one's fellow beings as a horizontal relation chip which can be eloquently symbolized with the two lines I'm across I want to talk a little bit about the Ten Commandments I'm very excited by them ok I see sort of Buddhist ideas in my interpretation now I have to say is the sort of disclaimer that if any of my opinion is different from the church then I'll gladly change my opinion to align with the church that's the nature of my religion I have to conform to the truth of Jesus Christ and His Church not the other way around right well I think it's very good that you've set space for humility and flexibility that makes it safe to explore flights of fancy yeah one of my explorations in the Ten Commandments is that there are two Commandments the love of God and love of neighbor and when people ask Jesus what is the love of God he said if you love God keep his Commandments so there are two Commandments love of God and love of neighbor love of God is keep the commandments in the two Commandments local garden level neighbor love of God is keep the commandments and the two Commandments local garden love of neighbor and love of God is keeping the commandments and what you're left with basically is the love of neighbor that's the outlet all of that energy goes into that real world where we're present and we're dealing with the starving the underprivileged or with those that are in prison the widow and it's all for the love of God because the love of God we can't put a meal on a table we can't put a coat on it back so it's sort of the opposite of mysticism but it's fueled by mysticism because we are put directly right into this messy world to deal with responsibilities we have to take care of our neighbor imagine in your mind's eye a horizontal line with a dot on each end at one extreme we have contrivance and on the other extreme we have chaos you know there will be effective externally or internally they won't give us peace and we'll give others happiness in the middle point between the two extremes we have this place of centered spontaneity and that's how we can do the greatest good for others by walking in the spirit which is of course easier said than done but with the current technological advancements as they are today we already have a technology make sure that every human being is clothed said how educated and given access the healthcare what we lack is that it's not that we don't love people is that we love money so much more and of course I'm reminded about the first chapter Sermon on the Mount worships God or Mammon well humanity has chosen Mammon we've chosen to compete rather than cooperate they've chosen greed rather than giving and university studies have shown across the board you always accomplish the greatest achievements through cooperation not for competition when we look at the Star Trek the original series that came out in the 60s the aliens would not make contact with the species until they grown up to the point of ceasing to be predatory with each other because if someone's prayer towards each other and they become a spacefaring entity not made predatory with other planets and that's not warm and fuzzy humanity needs to have a collective spiritual birthday and needs to become intoxicated with love and compassion to cooperation and creative thinking creative problem solving we already have the ability the resources and make sure that all means were men now all we need is the collective will to do so and the two greatest aspects is that you've mentioned devotion and love are integral to doing that which is what I'm so glad that your current hope seems to really be taking the example of Christ to heart sneaking out of the little night poor and two ministers routines that's beautiful his enthusiasm not to be a condemning over to encourage rule of in just the right direction he's such the polar opposite of America's new president hahaha the Pope did give a welcoming message or a congratulatory message to trump and he's praying for Trump good I think we should all pray that whoever the president is assume you should always serves up to the individuals wisdom and love and house in fact I think that's a wonderful universal prayer because I don't think there's anybody wakes up and says oh damn it I'm just too wise I'm just tripping over my wisdom I gotta scrape some of those lose them off no one has a wisdom compassion or health sir play so what I do want to say for the record that because I'm a political and I don't have my finger on the pulse of the spirit of the age I don't follow politics I do like Donald Trump I don't trust him but I don't trust anyone I don't even trust the Pope I trust God when I give the benefit of the doubt to the post that pokes classic and he's doing you know it seems to be doing a good job and I give the benefit of the doubt to trump may be converted to pro-life I don't know god only knows I give them the benefit of the doubt the nice thing is that you and I aren't burdened with the mantle of judging others all they gotta do is see them and love them you know and which if she will disagree with us fine we can just see them and love them there's this wonderful book I was exposed to a wonderful phrase called naked awareness and I first came across this title many decades ago I was all excited about whoo naked awareness this has got to be about naughty naughty Tantra no it wasn't naked awareness was just a metaphor for vulnerability it's been completely vulnerable not trying to protect ourselves with preconceptions on labels categories judgments and that that degree of vulnerability is not only a tool to axe the higher stages of the path but also a barometer of our progress upon the higher stages in path look at the vulnerability of san francis assisi contrast that with the soft protection of tomás de Torquemada of the Inquisition both believe the Apostles Creed but the apply it radically different what comes to mind is the image that Jesus used of the seed if the seed doesn't die it can't grow that seed has to give ways to the plant that is potential in it well that sounds a lot like surrender it sounds a lot like letting go of self-protection letting go of self-identity which seems to be a universal truth of metaphysics found not just in prison them or Buddhism but also in Taoism also in shamanism around the world and it seems like it's a universal wisdom that the more we tried to protect yourselves the more we harm ourselves and the less we try to protect your sounds from a place of centeredness the more safe we are we need to whoa we need to let go constantly and if you hold on to yourself or your your ideas or your love or anything your beliefs anything if you hold on to them they will rot so this this to me sounds very Buddhist are all Buddhist United in something or are they all completely unique and different as i mentioned that's the forefront dry lama Todd that every Lama is his own sect so you could say that all Buddhists have an affinity for the Four Noble Truths but they don't own beyond the distinction of goodies to non-buddhist you can say all sentient being hate pain and walk pleasure all living beings you know me they amoeba or be they blue whale however they define pleasure can want more of it however they define pain they would like less of it but ironically their behaviors and their beliefs take them often in opposite direction take them further away from pleasure and keep her in the pain we've all done that but a man who's overweight who reads a dining book like absent mindedly eating a bag of Oreos you know he wants to have the pleasure of health but he's undermining and during the health by mindless eating the Orias that could be a metaphor for most of us live our lives what came to mind when you were talking just now a lot of things but one of them had to do with Jesus suffering he chose to suffer and die for our redemption but when it came time to suffer he actually prayed to the Father if it's possible take this cup away from me but not my will be done your will be done and there is so much wisdom that's often forgotten in that passage we look at Christ there were a wonderful to post grandma's what a wonderful example for us he was completely aware of the conflict emotions within him and that did not make him laugh the Son of God in fact it could be argued that what made him the way the truth light was the fact that he was aware of all that was going on within his heart whether it was glorious for there was grotesque jump toward two millennia and Carl Gustav Jung taught that the way the shadow self overcomes us is cured assumption and our greatest tool against our shadow self or what Paul called the old man was to be aware of what's going on inside our distress inside our heart inside our minds so the Christ in that passage was illustrating that through example i was showing his complete awareness of all the emotions his love for all humanity is going to bring them into a saved state and his self concern I love that James Cameron did not ride the New Testament because if he did he would have been the Terminator completely one-dimensional it wasn't he was multi-faceted just like you are just like aliens it's like we all just like your neighbor's cat is and I think that's one of the most beautiful things in New Testament what also came to mind when you were talking earlier was about the contrast because I initially asked you our all Buddhist alike and he said well everyone sort of doing their own thing and he can't really categorize but I what came to mind when you were talking earlier was John the Baptist was so strict and he was eating wild honey and locusts and he wasn't drinking and then Jesus was drinking with the prostitutes and tax collectors and you know they ran out of wine and when he came to the wedding at Cana you know that's right that's any indication but the Jews the strict sort of rigid Jews of the day which Jesus referred to as hypocrites they were criticizing John for one extreme for being too strict and they were criticizing Jesus for not being strict enough the sort of underlying message we can find fall if we want to find fault we will find fault and that finding fault really is sort of a symptom of a deeper hypocrisy and Mahayana Buddhism there is discussion given to the five poison and those would be simply plant greed hate confusion jealousy and pride and there's all kinds of finer points that can go into and it's been my experience that being critical if it's amped up with great emotion it's probably being driven on the five poisons whereas if it's centered it's probably being German by compassion for instance you know you can see so on drinking too much wine and if in place of compassion might think I can have such a headache tomorrow oh you don't think there's no condemnation there's just concerned right or oh I hope you take some uber home I hope you get some safely there's no hatred whereas if their aims anger involved if there is you know that son of a is drinking heav embarrassment to his road then that's a completely different place and it brings us back to 1st we're at you 13 you worry read man hat does not have love he has nothing you have things a huge word is all inclusive and included salvation so we there is no time for boredom there is so much to do with our own hearts and with our own minds anytime you're aware of a critical lesson in our heart that's such an opportunity to lump inside our own heart roll up our sleeves and go to work if anything where the Holy Spirit is kind enough to show us the rage of a bitterness or the envy and our heart that is a gift because that means we've been given the opportunity not to be bluntly controlled by those things but to work with them it brings to mind a competition which is that we can give everything to Jesus so if you find yourself falling into temptation in any kind of way even if it's the most trivial thing like you know you're married and you're looking at someone else's wife with lust in your eyes you don't turn that into a Woody Allen complex and internal turmoil and perversion you just give it to Jesus you say yeah I'm weak and you give it up you know it's part of that flow that I was talking about earlier let it flow don't get attached and so there's a teaching in the church that we need to just give it to Jesus and it's the same thing for goodbye nice stuff easier for me because this is super important we just said we look at Christ and get somebody we see him owning what he's feeling and discussing it with his Heavenly Father what many people do on many pounds because we drop the gnomon clamp sure and they drop the doctor and we're all humans what humans trend to do is look for an easy out in Buddhist circles I've had many students who would say I'm trying not to be attached to my anger or try not to be attached to my fear what they really are saying is I hate my anger I hate my sphere I'm gonna shove it away and I love peace I'm greedy for peace and I want to pull it to me but pushing and as hey or pulling as greed or two sides in the same kool-aid and so when we see Jesus doing is he's aware of what he's doing but he's not he's working with it the thing you said give it to Jesus that actually comes from the Old Testament where some enemy of Israel issued a poison pen letter to the king of his room and he brought into the temple and he laid it out upon the incense altar which is a wonderful thing in and of itself so it's completely wonderful to take our problems and be vulnerable with and surrendered with and to recognize that we don't have the power to stop lusting or stop hating but that's not the end of the story there's a point where we have to notice what we're experiencing whether it's external or internal whether it's physical or emotional or intellectual or pneumonic or fantastic or just notice it and then relax and then surrender that's where the freedom comes from just as you cannot pick up cook silver with your bare hands it rolls right out and through your fingers and falls back on the ground likewise with our reflections when we notice our affliction and then let go which shouldn't be confused shoving them a limit let go they can no longer control and so when we look at summit on the Mount when Jesus was talking about you've heard this but I tell you this and he does that several times the Sermon on the Mount and according to my understanding not a current of vacuum it occurred in a very complex situation and the the driving force was not to say therefore you're all a bunch of sinners because you notice beauty intellectually and viscerally none of its saying we all require God's grace even if you keep law perfectly which is tough to do you still require God's grace so what many well-meaning devotees of Christ often miss that and they metaphorically flagellate themselves once they notice their love store their age or their jealousy or their cried if we don't have to do that if we simply notice what's going on it's enough to break its momentum and let go and let the spirit do its work if God is truly unlimited we don't need to do his work for him we can let him do his work there's tremendous freedom enough to let God do his work what's coming to mind for me now is this idea of the dour moralizing Christian you know someone who's not happy is not joyful is not free this is not to put anyone down it's just a trap it's a trap that we can all fall into but I think it's pretty obvious you could take an 8th grader and show them the joyful Christian and the dour Christian and they'll know right away which one is the better Christian Right sanctimonious misery is found in all cultures the whole thing of joy and bitterness we feel a dichotomy everywhere and it's you know no one civilization has license on it so one of the keys to extricate ourselves from that trap is the cultivation of centered spontaneity of them vulnerability there's a wonderful comic I saw a single panel comic of tune dog sitting on meditation cushion the first turn to the second this is well I think the key and meditate learning how to stay yeah and we can do that you know whether we call ourselves Buddhists or Christians or here's if we can say with what's going on and not hide from it and not try to destroy it and not try to indulge it not play victim but stay with it relaxed centered way that embraces the Holy Spirit and embraces dharmakaya we can sign freedom even in the midst of physical pain even in the midst of sorrow and law even in the midst of the realization of our worst night Thomas Merton he was- Zen Buddha is that in any way related to Tibetan Buddhism well there are all panels in the same flower I've studied every school Buddhism one of the key teachings have higher Buddhism regardless of which school someone's in Islam that in the words of jigme lingpa a dead tibetan if we bring all live circumstances into the path then it is as if our very body was a meditation on when it was young and foolish and I was trying to coerce my teachers and they're giving me the secret mystical handshake that would solve all my problems you know that didn't exist but I thought it did I'd say you know well I gotta write magical tool I have much more time to meditate and of course they're handsome as you know your sufferings are your opportunity to meditate thanks thanks a lot that's not the answer I wanted to hear so yes there is a much like CS Lewis used to talk about that CS Lewis used to talk about how God wants his children to mature and become a gull they're always whining or mewling for their celestial parents to take away our lives adversities but to learn how to be able to cope with them in the midst of distressing circumstances are physical states or emotional states our mental states one of the things I really appreciate and one of the ancient Buddhist scriptures attributed to be taught in the school is the mecha-suit or the loving-kindness and discourse and in it we are cautioned to keep away from conjecture because conjecture like story can terrace violently offer Center as opposed to simply saying I don't know but perhaps they'll come to me the greatest scientists the ones who really had the big discoveries have balance analysis with creativity you can't fake creativity and many people in many religions have said transitivity is the whisperings of the divine the whisperings of the Holy Spirit many scientific spirit into the dreams all right so the idea came to a dream and then they act upon it analytically which is great the balance of both sides of the brain Einstein said that genius requires both intellect and imagination so it's one thing to leave room for the Holy Spirit to give you a great idea and then to act on it and notice your results that's a huge thing in any religion in any sect you'll find a majority and minority the majority can be fundamentalist the minority tend to be liberal the majority tend to work backwards from conclusion and then find facts to support inclusion whereas liberal will follow the facts wherever they lead and that of the truth sets us free by being completely vulnerable to what the five senses tell us and what our connectional Holy Spirit tells us that leads us to true freedom but humans are so prone to the subtle private things yep I've got a good beat on things I've got it all figured out and I just have to find the facts to support what I know the truth already is now let's say there's someone listening who's depressed they're contemplating suicide there for hope so okay so let's talk about depression this is really me okay contrary to popular belief doctors bless their hearts are not omniscient medicine is always changing and always evolving and that can be a very good good thing however not all doctors are geniuses some of very simple minds and fall into what we call circular thinking an example would be well we know everything in modern medicine if we can't firm what's wrong with you then it must be in your head oh my goodness depression is an excellent example of that when you look at the basic symptoms of the depression the same symptoms you have when you have a flu or a cold when you have the flu or you have a cold you don't feel like hiking you don't feel like making love you don't feel like gorging yourself you don't feel like running on the block you're not the trust your body's response to inflammation is to make sure you lay in bed you get better and based on that a significant number of physicians and this is a significant number of researchers using devil blind randomized placebo-controlled studies have found that when people exhibit the symptoms of depression if we remove the sources of inflammation from their diets and lifestyles the symptoms of depression go away without changing a single thoughts or belief you can go online you can get veggie caps of turmeric blended with black pepper the black pepper helps to increase the absorption of the turmeric a thousandfold it's not only a lovely seasoning it's a very strong natural safe anti-inflammatory by moving one's diet towards whole plant foods and away from salt and oil and sugar be one will be reducing the amount of inflammation in their body and their minds will be much happier depression is a symptom of a greater problem it's not a part of the stinking thinking stinking thinking is the product of a body that's not working right one of the st. Francis of sissies greatest gift was simplicity in the West and now in the east we are experiencing the health disorders of opulence that peasants did not experience in the past millennia because the rich inflammatory nature of our diet and so this is usually important we must go through life noticing all results non superstitiously we look James chapter 5 be thou not deceived what you sow you shall reap if you carry a big old cinder block and you drop it upon your left big toe you're going to feel a sensation you won't enjoy that sensation is not divine punishment it's the causality of dropping a big block on your toe so when we feel the passion it's not random it's because there's something wrong now circumstances may be affecting your diet that affects your body for instance circumstances may have set our sleep which will create an inflammatory state in her body but nine times out of 10 depression is called as a emotional symptom of a physical state and we ignore that at our own peril one of the coolest things were a Buddha taught was he said doesn't matter who told you something doesn't matter if it comes from an old book what matters is the results it gives you when you apply it and that is the heart that is the seed that gives birth to the flower of the empirical method and it's really cool to know that the people who came up with the empirical method for trees and churchmen so the empirical method is not antithetical to the spiritual path noticing our actions and their consequences is integral to our progress palma spherical contrary to what some angry bitter people tell you science is not the enemy of God there is a God and he invented gravity he invented electromagnetism he invented the strong nuclear force he invented the weak nuclear force you can't offend God with his own creation it can't be done I've tried it doesn't happen may get making them giggle but that's just about it Oh depression is not an indictment it's a symptom and if we respond to it strategically we can prevail against it that's huge there's books i recommend you can get on Amazon when it's called how not to die but dr. Michael Greger wonderful book another book it's a cook book written by chef Bravo you can find out on amazon if you spend a week if you spend yourself three months to transition into eating whole plant foods and avoiding salt oil and sugar the first week you will hate me you will christen to my face that's okay I'm a big boy i can handle it but by the ninth week you will be styling and you will feel so much better you won't have any of the side effects you get from many antidepressants your thinking will be lucid your heart will be happier your body will be healthier how's that yeah you like it one of you got some questions at the end okay all you got to be a winner all you gotta do you