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What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?

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What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? D. 11/14/17 5:12 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? seth tapper 11/14/17 7:12 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? C P M 11/14/17 7:17 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Dom Stone 11/14/17 7:42 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Incandescent Flower 11/14/17 8:49 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Alesh Vyhnal 11/14/17 9:28 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Yilun Ong 11/14/17 9:39 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Alesh Vyhnal 11/14/17 9:39 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Frater Geur 11/15/17 7:11 AM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Sean 11/15/17 7:45 AM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? D. 11/15/17 3:05 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Jinxed P 11/15/17 11:53 AM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Doctor Avocado 11/15/17 12:10 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Stirling Campbell 11/15/17 4:30 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Ward Law 11/15/17 5:46 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Alesh Vyhnal 11/16/17 5:23 AM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Lars 11/16/17 12:49 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Fran Ko 11/16/17 1:40 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? streamsurfer 11/16/17 2:37 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Change A. 11/16/17 8:08 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Nick O 11/16/17 9:10 PM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? Chris André 11/21/17 10:41 AM
RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory? seth tapper 11/21/17 11:27 AM
DISCLAIMER: I'm not suicidal, and I do not plan to take my life. This is an honest question that I've been thinking about.

I am curious about people what people think the 'point' of living is. It just seems like a set of boring cyclical routines and suffering that you repeat uday after day until death finally comes for you with no actual incentive to NOT end your life(besides social stigma and being too much of a pussy to do it.)

Surely the quickest way to end all your suffering is suicide? Why chase after stream-entry, when experience will always, and ultimately, be unsatisfactory?

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 7:12 PM as a reply to D..
Ever snuggle a child, watch a whale or eat something that is so delicious your knees buckle? 

When I am doing those things, having a point seems moot. 

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 7:17 PM as a reply to D..
There are lots of incentives, since this is a meditation forum, here is a meditation incentive: train your mind using meditation technology to (this is from Shinzen Young)

• Reduce physical or emotional suffering.
• Elevate physical or emotional fulfillment.
• Achieve deep self knowledge.
• Make positive changes in objective behavior.
• Develop a spirit of love and service towards others.

If you are able to make even small progress in this manner, the need to ask your question goes away.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 7:42 PM as a reply to D..
Experience is empty of inherent existence, as well as all objects that make up this experience.

By itself, there is nothing unsatisfactory about it, as your true nature cannot be affected by anything. You are pure knowing, empty of form.

The problem lies with the habitual nature of the mind. From birth, we have shrouded our true nature with ideas of permanence and continuity. This is evolutionarily necessary to keep you alive in a world that, ultimately has no colour or pain. It is this constant grasping to shifting concepts that make samsara what it is, a painful karmic process leading on and on. By mediating, we teach the mind to be still, and the unsatisfactoriness lessens. It's impossible to tell whether anybody alive today has truly overcome all dissatisfaction as such knowledge can only be known empirically, however this is the aim, and it is an awesome journey!

In short, it is the mind that finds suffering, you yourself are not your mind, therefore theoretically, if you can disembed from the illusion of self, you can be free from it in this lifetime.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 8:49 PM as a reply to D..
Deepankar:
DISCLAIMER: I'm not suicidal, and I do not plan to take my life. This is an honest question that I've been thinking about.

I am curious about people what people think the 'point' of living is. It just seems like a set of boring cyclical routines and suffering that you repeat uday after day until death finally comes for you with no actual incentive to NOT end your life(besides social stigma and being too much of a pussy to do it.)

Surely the quickest way to end all your suffering is suicide? Why chase after stream-entry, when experience will always, and ultimately, be unsatisfactory?

I don't think we choose what the point of living is, I think it's something we just feel or don't feel. Further, I don't recall ever having made the choice of being born, and there's nothing to suggest that I'll have a choice of what happens to me at death, so at least working within the constraints of my present life I have the benefit of some regularity/routine. This not having a choice is actually wrapped up in what I understand as the "point" of life, personally, and is very much implied in the fundamental thrust of compassion.

As for your last question, to answer simply it's because stream entry is the first taste of non-experience and its resulting freedom.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 9:28 PM as a reply to D..
"Empty-handed I entered the world. Barefoot I leave it. My coming, my going--two simple happenings that got entangled." --Kozan Ichigyo


For me the meaning of life is to constantly try to find one: The angels carrying Goethe's Faust's soul to safety pronounce: Wer immer strebend sich bemüht, Den können wir erlösen (Who strives always to the utmost, Him we can save).



RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 9:39 PM as a reply to D..
Deepankar:
Why chase after stream-entry, when experience will always, and ultimately, be unsatisfactory?

The purpose is to see suffering so clearly and know it for what it is, that no sane being will hold on to it.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/14/17 9:39 PM as a reply to D..
But if you have symptoms of depressive disorder only modern psychopharmacology can save you. But if you can overcome your suffering by your will than it is not depressive disorder.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 7:11 AM as a reply to D..
Some thoughts: the assumption in your question is that life has something to do with experience. Does it? Life lives. Regardless of the shittiness of experience, life lives.

Another thought: what is our standpoint upon the unsatisfactoriness of experience? To know that experience is unsatisfactory implies it might be otherwise -- the concept of the Perfect, or the Good. The incentive to live is to realise as fully as possible in life what is perfect and good.

What else were you planning to do today?

Big Love!

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 7:45 AM as a reply to D..
S.:
"Surely the quickest way to end all your suffering is suicide? Why chase after stream-entry, when experience will always, and ultimately, be unsatisfactory?"

Reincarnation.


Then what for the modern secular buddhists who don't believe in reincarnation? I don't think there is an answer.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 11:53 AM as a reply to D..
Well Bill Hamilton did call the ancient buddhists a cosmic suicide cult...

Being that their goal was to stop suffering, which meant stopping existence, and the only way to stop being reborn was to become enlightened.

For the modern secular buddhist..meditate because it makes you happy, and the people who are enlightened claim that their life is pretty awesome. 

Or as Tyrion Lannister once said, "Death is so final. While life, is so full of possibilities."

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 12:10 PM as a reply to D..
To reduce the suffering of others, even just a little bit, seems like a worthwhile enough reason to stick around

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 3:05 PM as a reply to Sean.
Personally, I believe in reincarnation as well. It's probably one of the reasons I don't off myself in the midst of the useless suffering I go through.

But, I don't see the 'positive utility' as great unless I can feel/be like that 24/7. Maybe I just dislike aspects of impermanence, but if my suffering will never be at 0% forever, then it just seems like I got a raw deal coming into life. And, that's me speaking as a pampered fuccboi in the 1st world who has the ease to pursue a spiritual path, so I assume others in the world are even worse off comparitively.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 4:30 PM as a reply to D..
Certainly elightenment is not going to give you a point/meaning/reason to live. Point/meaning/reason to live is all thinking... all subject/object conceptualization. What this all REALLY is exists outside of, and without subject/object entirely. 

Try this:

Stare at your hand, take a deep breath, then count to 5 silently. 

Was there "meaning" in that 5 seconds? Ideas? Suffering? A "you" separate from your hand and the counting?

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/15/17 5:46 PM as a reply to D..
Perhaps we have less choice in the matter than we think. If one is at a point in life where suicide seems to be the most rational and auspicious choice, one must still contend with the hard-wired will of the human organism to survive, in all its clever ways. This conflict might not reach a climax until the means and opportunity (e.g., gun, helium, cliff, freezing weather) are at hand and the intellectual decision has been made. The hard-wired survival instinct wins, I presume, more than half the time, giving rise to story lines such as "a sudden change of heart" or an appreciation of how precious each moment of life is. I think it's even harder to go through with such a choice if there are loved ones till present in your life.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/16/17 5:23 AM as a reply to D..
The surest way to end all the suffering of sentient beings would be a doomsday device:

Nuclear weapons theorists such as
Leo Szilard 
conceived of a doomsday machine, a massive thermonuclear device surrounded by hundreds of tons of cobalt which, when detonated, would create massive amounts of Cobalt-60, rendering most of the Earth too radioactive to support life.

But no one will do it. And this perhaps points to some higher meaning.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/16/17 12:49 PM as a reply to Alesh Vyhnal.
Alesh Vyhnal:
The surest way to end all the suffering of sentient beings would be a doomsday device:


This assumes that there is only life on earth, and ignores reincarnation (if time doesn't really exist you could still be reborn in the past when earth was not yet a radioactive ruin, even if time does exist you could be reborn on the radioactive earth as a tardigrade which could survive the radiation). Also, if the multiverse hypothesis is correct you would only be destroying one of an infinite number of earths, and suffering would continue on all the others.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/16/17 1:40 PM as a reply to D..
Deepankar:
DISCLAIMER: I'm not suicidal, and I do not plan to take my life. This is an honest question that I've been thinking about.

I am curious about people what people think the 'point' of living is. It just seems like a set of boring cyclical routines and suffering that you repeat uday after day until death finally comes for you with no actual incentive to NOT end your life(besides social stigma and being too much of a pussy to do it.)

Surely the quickest way to end all your suffering is suicide? Why chase after stream-entry, when experience will always, and ultimately, be unsatisfactory?
Seeing that it is you who assigns value and meaning to things the "point" can be whatever you want it to be. And because there is no self to assign meaning, there is also no ultimate point in life.

After a while though one realizes these philosophical debates and intelectual masturbations are almost always useless and tiring dead-ends, so we remember the Lord Buddha and his parable of the poisoned arrow (commentary by Thitch nhat Hahn):
The Buddha always told his disciples not to waste their time and energy in metaphysical speculation. Whenever he was asked a metaphysical question, he remained silent. Instead, he directed his disciples toward practical efforts. Questioned one day about the problem of the infinity of the world, the Buddha said, "Whether the world is finite or infinite, limited or unlimited, the problem of your liberation remains the same." Another time he said, "Suppose a man is struck by a poisoned arrow and the doctor wishes to take out the arrow immediately. Suppose the man does not want the arrow removed until he knows who shot it, his age, his parents, and why he shot it. What would happen? If he were to wait until all these questions have been answered, the man might die first." Life is so short. It must not be spent in endless metaphysical speculation that does not bring us any closer to the truth.[2]
So, in keeping with the pragmatic spirit of DhO, my advice would be to remove the poisoned arrow first, ask questions later. if questioner still remains, rinse, repeat emoticon

FranKo 

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/16/17 2:37 PM as a reply to D..
I had to think about efortless effort and the moveless mover, just moving in life for the pure joy of it. Birds do what their existence determines them, as well as ants, gazelles and other animals, humans are the only to complain about their life emoticon
I can recommend reading Marc Aurel or other stoics on that. You don't need a motivation or reward for your life. You have to do what this human life demands of you, there is no choice. Why do you expect there more to be as there is in lifes simplest form?

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/16/17 8:08 PM as a reply to D..
There is no point of living.

But then there is no point of dying either. 

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/16/17 9:10 PM as a reply to D..
My A&P experience flooded me with weeks of love and euphoria yet simultaneously spilled the beans that nothing really matters. At the time, that realization was a huge weight off my shoulders. However, after the honeymoon faded and I returned to my old ways, the other side of the coin reared its ugly head. Three months ago I was sitting on the couch every night after work chugging beers, thinking, "whatever, nothing really matters". And in my darkest hours I have thought to myself the only reason I stick around in this world is because of the people who love me. Sobering up and pursuing the Dharma fully in the last couple months has brought that incentive back for my art and the simple joys in life. Experience may be technically unsatisfactory, but we still find joy don't we? And as for suicide, reincarnation or not, I don't think it solves our perdicament in a way that is beyond our human understanding.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/21/17 10:41 AM as a reply to D..
Life happens. It is in the nature of my physical body to want to survive. To that I surrender. People always ask about the meaning of life, or how to create meaning in your life, but I think it is a greater freedom to tune into just pure beingness beyond both meaning and lack of meaning. I just surrender to existence. Existence exists. Somehow I'm part of that. Everything in me as a biological being wants to thrive and succeed, and if not, something is out of balance and I'll try to get back into balance. Suicide doesn't really seem like a choice to me. It is more of a theoretical concept, and for those few who commits suicide, or are suicidal, I think of it as being seriously out of balance and I think no living being would have done so if they had found a way to bring themselves back into balance. So there is no need for any incentive because this is what we got. Life wants to live.

RE: What is the incentive to live if experience is unsatisfactory?
Answer
11/21/17 11:27 AM as a reply to Chris André.
I think this is a really good answer.  I would add that if you are contemplating suicide, you are by definition mired in a false belief that there is something to kill.  You are thinking in a completely delusional paradigm.