Buddha the Enlightened One

For some the Buddha is a god but practically speaking Siddhartha Gautama or Siddhattha Gotama was an atheist and therefore he didn’t view himself as a deity. For those, like the Buddha, who take a position as an atheist or agnostic I would challenge you to consider several of the cosmological and teleological arguments which I have already put forth in my previous posts.

Atheist and Agnostic

If we can conclude that God does exist then we should look towards Him as gaining the right understanding and thought in guiding our lives instead of the gurus and the Buddha.

Also for those who give honor to the Buddha how do they know that his sayings have been perfectly preserved since his words were not put into print until 400 years after his death? This would give plenty of time for oral tradition to embellish the content of his teaching which leaves the door open to stories of mythological proportions. Also as far as what has been attributed to his sayings he supposedly taught that if a person finds no value to certain aspects of his teaching then they are to disregard it. So how can a person who claims to have truth not affirm himself in an objective manner?

In addition to this Buddha’s teachings have resulted in forming many different schools of thought and various sects which hold to contradictory views.

Perhaps this is because there are discrepancies that are found among these varied and voluminous resources therefore making it difficult if not impossible to reconcile these differences within the texts.

Then again I wonder if even the Buddha himself would even recognize all the script which is credited to his authorship.

Anyway the question resonates was the Buddha really enlightened or awakened? How does he or anybody else know whether or not they have objectively reached or achieved this state of being and by what means does a person measure this phenomena of spiritual aptitude? To claim enlightenment could be an illusion of enlightenment as there is no criteria in which to standardize this spiritual condition.

Even the Buddha himself could not describe or define such elated terms as nirvana except to say what it is not. If the awakened one could not define the ultimate destiny in his enlightenment then how can a person be for sure that this is an actual state of being or becoming?

Is it possible that this religious worldview is only a lie or a deception which has resulted in wasting precious lives through a pessimistic and nihilistic philosophy of snuffing out a person’s own desire for life rather than pursuing the illuminating joy of celebrating the gift of living?

In reality desire can never be extinguished anyway and even the monks who are committed more to an monastic lifestyle of spiritual discipline still have a desire to uphold the precepts of the four noble truths and walk the noble eight-fold path in order to achieve the desirous state of nirvana.

This philosophy of denying oneself may go along with Buddhistic thought but practically are these people living out their life based on these principles?

Also how can a person prove such ideas as anicca/anitya or anatta/anatman? In the final analysis is this just nonsensical religious jargon and words or is this reality? Is all of life to be interpreted as just an illusory realm of shifting shadows without any concept of stability and permanence? Again are Buddhists living up to these ideals and does this rightly represent their day to day life?

In moving on to responding towards the emphasis of avoiding suffering this philosophy is part of the negative equation to the content of hedonism which strives to maximize pleasure while minimizing or avoiding pain.

In regards to the aspect of pain and suffering this concept can only be realized if there exists the antithetical elements of pleasure and goodness otherwise we have nothing to relate to as what is termed as pain and suffering. So if a degree of goodness and happiness can be achieved wouldn’t it be admirable rather than avoidable to see the glass as half full instead of half empty? Shouldn’t we desire to embrace the positive aspect of living rather than avoiding desire altogether? Just because life is filled with obstacles does this mean that it is better to admit defeat and avoid running the race or would it be more beneficial to take the challenge and leap over these hurdles in life? You know sometimes beautiful things can come forth from suffering but if a person avoids this experience then how honorable is it to retreat in life? We have seen the likes of heroes whom we have admired in laying down their lives for the benefit of others such as what Jesus did in suffering through His death on the cross. This was done on behalf of mankind in which he bore the penalty of our sin and guilt in order to release us from the curse of eternal suffering by meriting on our behalf the perpetual bliss of a heavenly kingdom.

I understand and agree that pain and suffering is an evil that is a part of this existence and world but it shouldn’t be avoided by checking out or escaping this reality which does nothing to solve the problem of ridding ourselves and our world of such mayhem. It is better to center our energies and efforts on building hospitals for the infirmed and food banks/shelters for the poverty stricken and orphanages for our abandoned young rather than to take a passive approach in action towards those who have found themselves in such unfortunate circumstances.

Also living in a monastery does not solve the problems of human suffering and isolation is more of a defensive posture versus a progressive approach in handling these issues.

Christianity has taken the position and the lead in making great efforts in providing humanitarian aid to better the lives of others by easing the discomfort of the destitute and suffering rather than taking the attitude that helping others is a contribution to the evil of increasing others Tanha/Trsna (desire ) or somehow reason that these people are really suffering anyway due to some fatalistic realm of karmic retribution.

Suffering may be an enemy but ironically by snuffing out desire this will only lead to more suffering the likes of which Buddhism is trying to escape.

Another irony to the emphasis of this philosophy is that the Buddha who sought out the source of suffering and how to eliminate it was a perpetrator of causing pain himself and his actions were contradictory to his mission as he abandoned his own family including his wife and child by creating a hardship for them in order to pursue his quest.

In my final analysis Buddhism in its most simplistic form appears to be egocentric and selfish because even though it may uphold to a basic moral code of treating others with respect it does so out of a self interest of solving their own personal problem of suffering as a way of meriting something for their own benefit, namely nirvana.

So if the ultimate goal and motivation for the Buddhist is to remove ones own suffering then morality in interaction with others is seen as only a means to achieve the end.

Yet Jesus had another approach to humanity in which he unselfishly came to serve rather than to be served in giving his life as a ransom for many.

Finally according to Buddhist thought the concepts of accountability or judgment comes through the system of karma and rebirth.

This seems like such an oxymoron for me to believe that such a respected spiritual leader as the Dalai Lama is in exile or that the rape of the Tibetan Buddhist nuns by the communist Chinese resulted by some type of karma from a previous life.

Also I am wondering how does this system of retribution become manageable for an atheist who would deny a supreme being and yet who else could orchestrate such a system of belief? After all someone must determine and evaluate this elaborate system of works in order to obtain some form of orderly system. This would take an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent being which is definably God himself to oversee such an incomprehensible matter and so how can the existence of  God be denied?

In addition to this if nirvana is the ultimate achievement and final destiny in absolving oneself from this endless repetition of rebirths then how can one be absolutely sure of this realm of being?

Has anybody ever checked out of nirvana and come back to tell their story? Is this a real experience or are they depending upon blind faith? I did a blog on the after life or near death experiences which you might find helpful and interesting.


In response to Buddhist philosophy I would like to offer an alternative view which speaks of Jesus as the Light of the world and the One who illuminates every man’s path and if we trust Him as both Lord and Savior He will ultimately lead us out of this world of suffering not by the rigors of self effort into some kind of esoteric state of consciousness but rather in securing for us an eternal destiny of heavenly bliss.

I came into a relationship with Jesus over 20 years ago and He has radically transformed my life and filled me with a desire for living rather than inspiring me to despise my temporary abode of existence.

If you like you can read about my testimony at:


Also another point of objection is that whatever Buddhism has achieved academically it has done so through the school of Hindu thought.

Buddha may have strayed from Hinduism but nevertheless he was born, lived, and died a Hindu and therefore Buddhism though genetically altered bears a striking resemblance to its mother religion of Hinduism.

Again the bo tree of Buddhism is firmly rooted in Hinduism in which it has taken nourishment from as a vital support structure in maintaining Buddhism’s visibility as a religious institution.

In other words, though there are variances in beliefs between these two religious cultures, Buddhism wouldn’t exist without the guidance of the Indian guru’s and therefore it lacks  originality having it origins not in the Buddha to which it takes its name but rather its identity comes mainly from another source.

So do you want to put all your stolen eggs in the three baskets of Buddhistic teaching or would you entrust yourself into the protective hands of a loving and benevolent God who desired you and created you so you might have life and life more abundantly?

In conclusion this argument isn’t about who has the best philosophy or cultural expression but it is about seeking truth and allowing the truth to lead us down the path towards the inevitable. Christ came to light every man’s path but if the only light that you have is really just darkness then how will you find your way.

Yet the bible encourages us that God’s words are a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.

Finally I hope that my rhetoric isn’t misunderstood as just a violation of right speech and though my words may appear hard I do have a motivation of genuine concern which compels me to labor my point in seeking the benefit of others. Again I am sorry if I have come across disrespectfully or have offended you needlessly I just don’t know how to say these things in a soft manner and yet communicate effectively the seriousness of these critical concepts.

Also I do believe as the Buddhist that there is an accountability system of right and wrong. These ideals are hard wired in the main frame of our existence in which God communicates truth to our inward parts so that we instinctively know that there are consequences and judgments to our life decisions and this is respectable when Buddhism minimally acknowledges that but to work out someway of appeasing the conscious through the self effort of religious practice is only a counterfeit behavior to the reality of having a personal relationship with the One who is able to remove the burden of guilt that humanity tries so hard to extinguish by self effort.

In closing I would just ask you to simply consider as an invitation to taste and see that the Lord is good and to open your heart to explore the person and work of Jesus.

Lastly I would like to leave you with a scripture which was uttered by Jesus in Matthew 11:28-30 28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”



How to know God

Buddhist Resources

English Articles on Theravada Buddhism



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