[Buddha-l] angels

Gad Horowitz horowitz at chass.utoronto.ca
Thu May 26 11:49:54 MDT 2005

thats all very well, but for Levinas"s Judaism "God" refers to our
obligation to do our utmost and more for the other.  Does the Buddha not
relate to such an obligation?  Why then does he teach?

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "r.g.morrison" <sgrmti at hotmail.com>
To: "Buddhist discussion forum" <buddha-l at mailman.swcp.com>
Sent: Thursday, May 26, 2005 3:00 AM
Subject: Re: [Buddha-l] angels

> Gad Horowitz writes:
> : perhaps God COMMANDEDthe Buddha to teach and the Buddha accepted this as
> his
> : OBLIGATION.  This is the burden of a Levinasian critique/contribution to
> : Buddhism that I wrote a few years ago titled "Emmanuel, Robert".
> is
> : Robert Magliola, author of Derrida on the Mend, an exCatholic Buddhist
> : deconstructionist who teaches in Hong Kong.)
> Well here's what the sutta says (using Bhikkhu Bodhi's translation):
> '.. Brahma Sahampati disappeared from the brahmaa world and reappeared
> before the Blessed One.  He arranged his upper robe over one shoulder,
> down with his right knee on the ground, raised his hands in reverential
> salutation towards the Blessed One ...', and then asked the Buddha to
> There is nothing here that could possibly suggest a 'command'.  Brahma
> Sahampati, like all the other brahmas one meets with in the suttas, is of
> inferior spiritual status to the Buddha.  The very next sutta makes it
> that the Buddha could not see any other among the maras, devas, brahmaas,
> ascetics, etc. that he could look up to and honour as, being a buddha, he
> had no equal in the universe.  One can make of this what one will, but I
> think any 'contribution to Buddhism' should take into consideration what
> Buddhist texts actually say, and not just one's own beliefs and
> And if one looks at what these suttas have to say about gods who think
> created the world, one will see that such beings are treated as objects of
> ridicule and satire.
> Robert Morrison
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