Buddhism as a Critique of Culture

High school
Pages 2 (502 words)
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According to Watts, Eastern religions like Buddhism, Taoism and Hinduism do not confine merely to the boundaries of religious beliefs, making it inherently impossible to classify them as "religion, philosophy, sciences or mythologies" or even their "amalgamations" (Watts 7).


This is the aim, even with regard to 'normal' people in the world, since they tend get confused, and develop problems due to wrong identification of the patterns of life or 'samsara' (Watts 16) shrouded in 'maya' which is explained as being more than illusory; 'maya' encompasses the entire range of concepts from culture, one's cultural identity, to the way one perceives the world (Watts 9).
An individual is an inseparable organism of the universe, and simultaneously unique, since all organisms are not uniform and differ in their identities accorded as per the societal constructs such as sex, class, and others. Conflicts arise because the rules of the universe and cosmos may not always be in consonance with that of the societal conventions, and the individual struggles to integrate between these two inherently differing components of reality and social constructs or maya (Watts 9).
In these eastern thoughts, 'nirvana' or liberation (Watts 16) is the solution to the problems arising from afore mentioned conflict. The aim of nirvana is not to destroy maya, but rather, to see through maya; and to do this one must come out of the social constructs and see reality (Watts 9). ...
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