Author Topic: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used  (Read 3590 times)

Offline Kalachakra

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
    • View Profile
Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« on: November 28, 2009, 02:31:29 pm »
Content removed.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 11:18:21 pm by Wonky Badger »

overmyhead

  • Guest
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2009, 11:18:51 pm »
Interesting post.  I myself always thought that the word "meditation" didn't have a very clear definition.  It's like an all encompassing word that an outsider can apply to anyone who is sitting quitely, having no idea or concern for what is really going on.  I wonder if "mediation" was originally used to describe the practice of Christian philosphers, and then crudely adapted to all manner of mental discipline.

Offline humanitas

  • buddha's om-girl
  • Member
  • Posts: 2326
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2009, 12:40:45 am »
overmyhead, some food for thought (coincidentally, I was reading about this very subject most of the afternoon!)...

According to wikipedia

The Therapeutae (male, pl.) and Therapeutrides (female, pl.), according to the account in De vita contemplativa by the Jewish philosopher Philo of Alexandria (c. 20 BCE - 50 CE) who appears to have been personally acquainted with them, were "philosophers" (cf. I.2) that lived on a low hill by the Lake Mareotis close to Alexandria in circumstances resembling lavrite life (cf. III.22), and were "the best" of a kind given to "perfect goodness" that "exists in many places in the inhabited world" (cf. III.21). Philo derives the name Therapeutae/Therapeutides from Greek θεραπεύω in the sense of "cure" or "worship" (cf. I.2), whilst Pseudo-Dionysius favours the meaning "servants".

Buddhism


Buddhist proselytism at the time of king Ashoka (260-218 BCE), according to the Edicts of Ashoka.

The similarities between the Therapeutae and Buddhist monasticism, a tradition earlier by several centuries, combined with Indian evidence of Buddhist missionary activity to the Mediterranean around 250 BCE (theEdicts of Ashoka), have been pointed out.[5] The Therapeutae would have been the descendants of Ashoka's emissaries to the West, and would have influenced the early formation of Christianity.[6] The linguist Zacharias P. Thundy also suggests that the word "Therapeutae" is only a Hellenisation of the Indian Pali word for traditional Buddhists, Theravada.[7] In general, Egypt had intense trade and cultural contacts with India during the period, as described in the 1st century CE Periplus of the Erythraean Sea.
From the standpoint of comparative religions, ascetism can be seen as a common point between Buddhism and Christianity, and is in contrast to the absence of asceticism in Judaism:
"Asceticism is indigenous to the religions which posit as fundamental the wickedness of this life and the corruption under sin of the flesh. Buddhism, therefore, as well as Christianity, leads to ascetic practices. Monasteries are institutions of Buddhism no less than of Catholic Christianity. The assumption, found in the views of the Montanists and others, that concessions made to the natural appetites may be pardoned in those that are of a lower degree of holiness, while the perfectly holy will refuse to yield in the least to carnal needs and desires, is easily detected also in some of the teachings of Gautama Buddha. The ideal of holiness of both the Buddhist and the Christian saint culminates in poverty and chastity; i.e., celibacy. Fasting and other disciplinary methods are resorted to curb the flesh."
—The Jewish Encyclopedia
[8]

Therapeutae influence

According to the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus spent his early childhood in Egypt which was at the end of the Silk Road. As a result of its role in trade with the East, Egypt was prosperous and enriched with religious diversity.[citation needed]
The Therapeutae (known only from Philo) were mystics and ascetics who lived especially in the area around Alexandria,[31] Philo described the Therapeutae in the beginning of the 1st century CE in De vita contemplativa ("On the contemplative life"), written ca. 10 CE. By that time, the origins of the Therapeutae were already lost in the past, and Philo was even unsure about the etymology of their name.
Philonian monachism has been seen as the forerunner of and the model for the Christian ascetic life. It has even been considered as the earliest description of Christian monasticism. This view was first espoused by Eusebius of Caesarea in his Ecclesiastical History.[32]
According to the linguist Zacharias P. Thundy the name "Therapeutae" is simply an Hellenisation of the Pali term for the traditional Buddhist faith, "Theravada". The similarities between the monastic practices of the Therapeutae and Buddhist monastic practices have led to suggestions that the Therapeutae were in fact Buddhist monks who had reached Alexandria, descendants of Ashoka's emissaries to the West, and who influenced the early formation of Christianity.[33] The evidence for this argument rests solely on the similarity of practices and the purported derivation of the name. There is no evidence from antiquity that supports this argument.
Elmar R. Gruber, a psychologist, and Holger Kersten, a specialist in religious history argue that Buddhism had a substantial influence on the life and teachings of Jesus.[34] Gruber and Kersten claim that Jesus was brought up by the Therapeutae, teachers of the Buddhist Theravada school then living in the Bible lands. They assert that Jesus lived the life of a Buddhist and taught Buddhist ideals to his disciples; their work follows in the footsteps of the Oxford New Testament scholar Barnett Hillman Streeter, who established as early as the 1930s that the moral teaching of the Buddha has four remarkable resemblances to the Sermon on the Mount."[35]

References
^ "Zen living", Robert Linssen
^ "The Original Jesus" (Element Books, Shaftesbury, 1995), Elmar R Gruber, Holger Kersten
^ Thundy, Zacharias P. (1993). Buddha and Christ: Nativity Stories & Indian Traditions. Brill Publishers. pp. 244-249. ISBN 9004097414. 
^ JewishEncyclopedia.com - ASCETICISM:


Kalachakra:  knowing the etymology of the word I will counter that the term  "meditation" was, in fact, a concept and term influenced by the Buddha since most of the languages which initially adopted early Christianity were languages of indo-european origin and would have had many terms which derived from the linguistic progenitor--Sanskrit.  The word's root is Indo-european thus has origins in the Indic-Aryan family of languages.   

Etymology of Meditation

'Meditation' comes from Latin 'meditari' which means "exercise", "turn something over in one's mind", "think, consider".

The Indo-European root is "*med-" i.e. "measure". The word "mederi" means "take care" from which we got "medicine, medical"  and the like.

As a matter of fact any shape of meditation needs, more and more exercise, exercise, and again exercise ! Never stopping to do, never neglecting it !

For the westerner theological literature the word meditation refers just to "thinking, imagining with a deliberate religious purpose". I think it should be used in that way. They use another term, such as "contemplation, Orison" (from Latin : oratio, oro, orare[2]) when the process reaches the Silence of the powers of the Soul. is found likewise in other binomials such as : mystic/ascetic, purgative life / illuminative life (after St Bonaventure).


In religious contexts the word has pretty steadily carried over comparable meanings cross-culturally.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2009, 12:57:03 am by Ogyen Chodzom »
This post was made with 100% recycled karma

overmyhead

  • Guest
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2009, 01:35:15 am »
Interesting article.  So was Jesus a Buddhist or a Jew?  ;D

Regarding the etymology, while the root may be Indo-European, it is a long way off from "meditation", and from what you have presented I remain skeptical that the Buddha had a particular influence on the etymology of the word.  Why would he use such a vague term?

Offline humanitas

  • buddha's om-girl
  • Member
  • Posts: 2326
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2009, 12:05:24 pm »
If meditari means exercise and the med-* root = measure... all I'm saying is we do call it "practice" (exercise) and meditari literally means to exercise (which is exactly what Buddhists mean by "practice") and there were words and people and they interacted... anything could have happened  ;D *wink wink nudge nudge* Ya know what I mean ya know what I mean?

« Last Edit: November 29, 2009, 03:22:53 pm by Ogyen Chodzom »
This post was made with 100% recycled karma

Offline Kalachakra

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2009, 11:58:12 am »
Some content removed.

***************************************************************************************************

For some reason I suspect that you would like the Alexandrian Pagan Philosopher Hypatia, not as a neoplatonic but as a person.
She was a holy terror.  She would ride thru the streets of Alexandria driving her four-horse chariot by herself, and most importantly - she would humiliate the Christers in debate.  The Christer Bishop Cyril of Alexandria was soo upset he wrote to one of their theravadans ("elders") and one of them ("Peter the Reader"?) brought a gang into Alexandria to deal with her.  They ambushed her as she drove her chariot, murdered her, and then used clam shells to scrape the flesh from her bones (Christers believed in "bodily resurrection" so they thought they were preventing her from arising at their "Final Judgement" thus making her really, permanently, eternally dead).  The Philosophers of Alexandria were outraged, but Bishop Cyril said that was what people could expect if they opposed Christianity.  That is the real reason Christianity rose to dominance in the western post-classical world.  In fact, many historians consider Hypatia's murder in March of 415 CE to be the exact end of the Classical period.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 11:17:42 pm by Wonky Badger »

Offline humanitas

  • buddha's om-girl
  • Member
  • Posts: 2326
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2009, 03:44:04 pm »
Classically, from the linguistics I've studied, the latin structure of verbs/nouns/etc broke down between root and conjugation or root and declension.  Therefore meditari would have been medi-root t-a-principal part and stem and -re conjugation.  -ditus is a conjugational suffix element in the structure of the verb tense in e-stem verbs.  For example to lose per-d-e-re (e-stem verb) can become per-didi or per-ditus.  Therefore it is highly unlikely that finger had any place in the verb's syntactical morphology.  I could be mistaken, but I've never heard of any reference to this before and it is not congruous to Latin syntax structures.  

...awwww gawrsh...  I feel that's quite the compliment... and it probably would take a whole gang to take me down.  Throw me in any agora with any man and I will debate with acuity (and kindness)!  Not to mention, they say the "Classical Antiquity" ended when she died, a whole era of reason and beautiful period of philosophy and mathematics completely taken down by an angry early Christian mob!  These were the early birther-nutjobs, pre-Obama, but post-Anno Domini (yes, there have been a lot of them in between the two dates haven't there?)  

*blushes* I'm flattened that you would compare me to the great Hypatia!  

« Last Edit: November 30, 2009, 08:06:16 pm by Ogyen Chodzom »
This post was made with 100% recycled karma

Offline Pema Rigdzin

  • Member
  • Posts: 220
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2009, 07:39:00 pm »
The Harappa finds include an amulet that shows a Buddha form seated in Lotus position surrounded by 8 Dakinis - from about 35,000 BCE. 
35,000 years ago? Really.

Which amongst other things actually shows that "Vedic" Vajrayana was the first, way before Buddhism was founded by Siddhartha Gotama.  And what was originally called Mahayana was what we now call Vajrayana, and what we now call Mahayana was known as Bodhisattvayana or Paramitayana.  And that is Sattva with long T which means "purity" or "Pure being" not Satva with short T which is a different word meaning "Warrior".
It is a well known fact that the Vedas predated Shakyamuni (Siddharta Gautama), but there is no such thing as "Vedic Vajrayana." This would mean that Vajrayana Buddhism were taught in the Vedas, which of course it is not. Secondly, the terms Mahayana, Bodhisattvayana, and Paramitayana are all synonymous and interchangeable, and the main Mahayana sutras date earlier than the Vajrayana tantras.

The Christer Bishop Cyril of Alexandria was soo upset he wrote to one of their theravadans ("elders")
Actually, "Theravada" refers to one of the 18 original sub-schools of Buddhism which fall under the rubric of "Shravakayana" and consist of teachings from the first turning of the Dharma wheel. The word you intended is "thera," which means "elder," although it's a Sanskrit word, so it's strange you're using it in the context of Greeks.

Yikes! I know way too much - I should be ashamed, but I'm not.
Umm, so far most of your posts I've come across have consisted of either specious logic and hasty assumptions or deliberate misinformation. Neither one is something to be proud of, especially the latter.

Offline Kalachakra

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2009, 02:01:44 pm »
"Pema Rigdzin" - I realize you are fathfully repeating what you were told, but what you were told has been proven wrong.
***********************************************
Some content deleted.
***********************************************
Pema, you were taught that Siddhartha Gotama was Blind, Deaf, Illiterate, and oblivious to the culture and people around him, which is absurd.
Buddha spoke the Vedic language of the people around him which is refered to as "Sanskrit" when it is "perfected" and "Prakrit" when it is "Earthy" (informal).  It was like the difference between "Hello how do you do" and "Howdy, what's up" - both are English but the first is "Sanskrit" (formal and perfected) and the second is "Prakrit" (Earthy and informal).
« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 11:16:52 pm by Wonky Badger »

Offline Pema Rigdzin

  • Member
  • Posts: 220
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2009, 10:12:05 pm »
Ummm... the earliest writing only dates back to under FOUR thousand years, so there hasn't been any archaeological find of teachings of any kind from 35,000 years ago.

The Vedas also have quite different teachings than Buddhism, including Vajrayana Buddhism.

The rest of your post is just nasty and disrespectful and really out of left field.

Offline Kalachakra

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2009, 01:17:12 pm »
I described the artifact from 35,000 years BCE - it is an amulet not a written text.

Offline WonderlandAlli

  • Vipassana & Simplicity
  • Member
  • Posts: 219
  • I love the smell of turpentine in the morning...
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #11 on: December 03, 2009, 09:52:08 pm »
Kala comments in this thread not deleted in my house cleaning for the sake of LOLTrolls.   ;D
sÄ«la ♥ samādhi  ♥ paññā

♥ Please consider donating to my fundraiser for Out of the Darkness, for suicide awareness and prevention. ♥ 
http://afsp.donordrive.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&eventID=1088&participantID=108712

Offline humanitas

  • buddha's om-girl
  • Member
  • Posts: 2326
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2009, 11:21:44 am »
I saw this one too and thought... nah I won't delete it.  It's too funny!
This post was made with 100% recycled karma

Offline ABC

  • Member
  • Posts: 344
    • View Profile
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #13 on: January 25, 2010, 01:56:27 am »
The suttas use words such as bhavana (cultivation, development) to describe meditation.

 :dharma:

Therefore, Ananda, engage with me friends and not as opponents. That will be for your long-term well-being & happiness - MN 122

Yeshe

  • Guest
Re: Meditation is a Latin word Buddha never used
« Reply #14 on: January 25, 2010, 02:58:40 am »
Does any of this matter very much?

It is surely of more importance to establish whether the 'meditation' practices we follow are anything like the practices of Shakyamuni.
For our practice to be the same or similar we would, I guess, need to have that practical set of techniques transmitted through an unbroken lineage.  That's a pretty tall order, and we only have written records from a much later period to which we can refer.

We can verify for ourselves that what has been transmitted appears to work in one way or another, and even convince ourselves that it is capable of leading to enlightenment, but we have no contemporary written historical evidence for the practices Buddha performed - so the etymology of the label 'meditation' would seem to be a much less important issue.

(As we have continuity of practice of 'meditation' since Vedic times I am persuaded that, on the balance of probability, Buddhist meditation has been correctly transmitted over a far shorter period.  But that's just me. :)  )

As for the 35,000 year old artefact - IF it exists at all, sitting in a traditional Indian pose which is used all over India as the norm is hardly evidence that the figure is a Buddha, let alone anything at all connected with Shakyamuni. Non sequitur writ large. It was obviously a space being visiting to impregnate the womenfolk with lizards. LOL :)

 


SimplePortal 2.3.3 © 2008-2010, SimplePortal