Stephen Batchelor Quotes

Enjoy the top 79 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Stephen Batchelor.

Stephen Batchelor Quotes

Buddhism, it seemed, was a rational religion, whose truth-claims could withstand the test of reason.
— Stephen Batchelor —

What is it that makes a person insist passionately on the existence of metaphysical realities that can be neither demonstrated nor refuted? (176)

— Stephen Batchelor

Anxiety, alienation, loneliness, emptiness, and meaninglessness are the fruits of living as an isolated subject admist a multitude of lifeless objects. Although our scope of involvement may extend to numerous and diverse fields of interest and concern, as long as the notion of having predominates, our being remains empty and superficial.

— Stephen Batchelor

Buddhism, it seemed, was a rational religion, whose truth-claims could withstand the test of reason.

— Stephen Batchelor

Habitually, as we anxiously flee from the responsibility of our existence as a whole, we place our hope in the particular objects and situations of the world. This, however, fails to provide us with a secure refuge and our initial anxiety asserts itself again.

— Stephen Batchelor

Loneliness is not only positively characterized by a certain degree of isolation, but is negatively characterized by a deficiency of participation.

— Stephen Batchelor

As a way of life, a middle path is an ongoing task of responsiveness and risk, grounded on a groundless ground. Its twists and turns are as turbulent and unpredictable as life itself.

— Stephen Batchelor

There is nothing one can have that one cannot fear to lose. Instead of living life in order to have more abundantly, live life in order to be more abundantly.

— Stephen Batchelor

Ironically, we may discover that death meditation is not a morbid exercise at all. Only when we lose the use of something taken for granted (whether the telephone or an eye) are we jolted into a recognition of its value. When the phone is fixed, the bandage removed from the eye, we briefly rejoice in their restoration but swiftly forget them again. In taking them for granted, we cease to be conscious of them. In taking life for granted, we likewise fail to notice it. (To the extent that we get bored and long for something exciting to happen.) By meditat- ing on death, we paradoxically become conscious of life.

— Stephen Batchelor

So the Buddha is presenting awakening not as a single mystical experience that may come upon us at some meditation, some private moment of transcendence, but rather as a new engagement with life. He is offering us a relationship to the world that is more sensitized to suffering and the causes of suffering, and he gives rise to the possibility of another kind of culture, another kind of civilization.

— Stephen Batchelor

Buddhism, I think, is probably facing the single most difficult transition from one historical epoch to another, which is really the transition to modernity.

— Stephen Batchelor

I reject karma and rebirth not only because I find them unintelligible, but because I believe they obscure and distort what the Buddha was trying to say. Rather than offering the balm of consolation, the Buddha encouraged us to peer deep and unflinchingly into the heart of the bewildering and painful experience that life can so often be.

— Stephen Batchelor

Yet Gotama's Dhamma is more than just a series of axioms. It is to be lived rather than simply adopted and believed in. It entails that one embrace this world in all its contingency and specificity, with all its ambiguity and flaws.

— Stephen Batchelor

Inner spiritual transformation is just as dependent upon the effect of our economic life upon the world as transformations in the world are dependent upon spiritual re-orientation.

— Stephen Batchelor

Evasion of the unadorned immediacy of life is as deep-seated as it is relentless. Even with the ardent desire to be aware and alert in the present moment, the mind flings us into tawdry and tiresome elaborations of past and future. This craving to be otherwise, to be elsewhere, permeates the body, feeling, perceptions, will - consciousness itself. It is like the background radiation from the big bang of birth, the aftershock of having erupted into existence.

— Stephen Batchelor

It has taken four billion years of evolution to generate this kind of organism with this kind of brain, and yet we wake up in the morning and feel bored.

— Stephen Batchelor

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