“The Power of Ideas”: from Ancient to Modern Philosophies

Karma explains that what people become in the present life is a result of their actions in the past life. Every action is followed by another action or an event appropriate, which may last a lifetime. An individual by surrendering to God and becoming enlightened on liberation can build up good karma and escape its bondage.

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Samsara is the final result of the ceaseless series of births and rebirths a human goes through till, at last, the final release from the bonds of life such as sensual lusts takes place. Nirvana occurs when an individual achieves liberation from Samsara and Karma. At this point, one’s soul is said to be united with that of Brahma and their temporary existence into the ultimate reality (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 498)

Brahman is regarded as the fundamental principle or reality lacking attributes but is an absolute and everlasting spirit, the origin, and the upholder of all things. Hindu ideas of Brahman show that circumstances in life are not real, that selfhood is an illusion, and only Brahman is real. Atman is viewed as the self of all living creatures.

Hindu ideas of Atman state that an individual through meditation and contemplation must realize that Brahman and Atman are one which enables an individual to recognize that the world and an individual’s ego are not real. Reality to the Hindu is not only about what constitutes it but also the relation of human beings to reality.

Hindu acknowledges several viewpoints that interpret reality. Samkara believed that only Brahman exists, and everything else is an illusion. Ramanuja believed in Brahman, but he also believed that the world was real. Madhva believed that although Brahman is the source of the world the soul exists independently (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 488)

The first truth is there is suffering. Buddha explains that suffering is a universal fact in life. It states that all existence is permeated with misery and suffering. It recognizes that suffering exists in all forms. The second truth states the cause of suffering. It explains that suffering is caused by thirst, desire, or craving, which leads to rebirth. Karma also causes suffering as the effects of one’s actions may last a lifetime. The third truth explains how suffering can be stopped.

The truth asserts that suffering can be done away with if there would be complete rooting and destruction of all desires. Such a situation is called Nirvana, where an individual is free from any form of desire and attains serenity. The fourth truth is the path that leads to the cessation of suffering. This path is declared as the Eightfold path.

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It is achieved through practicing the eight habits necessary for seeing things as they are, and it liberates an individual from cravings and anxiety and achieves Nirvana. Buddha is correct in his view as suffering is universal with fear, anxiety, and desires for pleasure, comfort, and physical gratification as the major causes of suffering. The only way to end suffering as Buddha states is to do away with its cause (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 490)

The habits in the eightfold path include; right view which can be achieved when one internalizes the four noble truths concerning suffering and gets knowledge on those things that cause suffering to humans such as selfish desires, right aim which involves directing one’s mind towards detachment from the world by overcoming selfish desires, right speech which requires one to desist from lying, slandering and being rude, right action which requires one to reject dishonest dealings and stay clear of all illegitimate sexual contacts, right living which requires one to find a profession that does not harm other creatures, right effort which means promoting a healthy state of mind, right mindfulness which requires one to strive to be aware of everything that goes around, every bodily sensation, every fleeting thought or emotion and how such emotions arise and disappear , and right contemplation which is an intense version of right mindfulness which sets the mind free of selfish desires and cravings.

This is a reasonable philosophy for life as it is both highly practical and intellectual. It helps an individual see things as they are. Once a person practices the paths, one is able to remove all craving and so bring to an end all Karma formations (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 491- 492).

Tao is a system of philosophy that gives rise to two forces, the liberal forces and the contractive forces, which are Yang and Yin, respectively (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 496).

Effortless non-striving lacks the self-desire and achieves eternal effects produced with less effort and appear mysterious as they are allowed to unfold in their own way. It simply implies doing the right thing in the right conditions, and contentment is achieved without resistance. It involves seeking to be concerned with all things not to gain anything but to be of help to them. It is leading a simple life and letting the world take its natural course (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p.497).

This principle emphasizes the reciprocal cooperation between people and between people and nature. It gives the measure of all things and states that when things work in line with this principle, there is less conflict and more nourishment. It advocates for moderation in human behavior (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 505).

Women, according to Murasaki, should not wait for reincarnation to start the series of philosophical enlightening rather, they should start it in this life by living. Women, as seen from Muraski’s views, are agents of morals as they take full charge of their deeds, avoiding the blame game (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 519).

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Anselm argues that God exists and contests anyone who believes that God does not exist. He believes that God exists in reality and understanding (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 398)

Guanilo objects the ontological argument where it states that God exists in the understanding. He argues that the perfect existence of any being is to exist in reality (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 399).

The five ways are; motion, which states that in the world, some things move. Movement can only be as a result of being moved by another as a thing cannot be the reason behind a move and be moved itself and God is the mover, nature of efficient cause which states that a thing in the world cannot be a cause of itself hence God is the first efficient cause, possibility, and necessity which states that beings are possible because there exists some necessity.

Therefore God exists and has his own necessity and causes necessity in others, gradation found in things states that God exists and he is the cause of all beings exist, and governance of the world which asserts that a being exists that directs all natural things (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 400).

Leibniz lays his claims on the fact that God chose to exist in this world, meaning it’s the best in the world. I agree with his assertion because if this world was not good, God could not have chosen it (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 410).

Friedrich claims that God is dead means that intelligent people by now should recognize that there is no force behind the things that happen in the world. Rather everything that happens is pasted from the human mind (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 420).

William states that in issues of religious beliefs people should not apply the commandments of rational thinkers most especially avoiding errors as it is better to hold on to religious beliefs than to be safe from errors to avoid losing the benefits that come with religious beliefs (Moore & Bruder, 2010, p. 421).

My religious values are right because I practice and believe in them, and they are in accordance with reality.

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Moore, B. N., & Bruder, K. (2010). Philosophy The Power of Ideas (8th ed.).

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