The Buddha started his career by studying under two of the most exalted Hindu teachers. Both teachers recognized the Buddha-to-be as reaching the highest possible level in meditative absorption and getting to the equal transcendental plane as themselves. Still, the Buddha was not impressed, and admitted that such level of accomplishment was not enough. After surpassing his teachers, the Buddha got disillusioned and went forward on his own, practicing harsh austerities. But that didn’t work either, and finally he relaxed and then discovered the secrets of the Middle Way practice. Thus, he attained unequaled liberation.Alex Bunardzic
The Buddha himself felt the application of harsh austerities to be the wrong way to go about things in order to reach the goal. He himself acknowledged His own failure of approach, adjusted, overcame.
Isn’t that the way of things though? Mustn’t a Master of any art or skill or science or genre – of anything at all – necessarily fail and be wrong about a great many things until said master has arrived at the rightness of the goal?
Is not the Noble Eight-fold Path the very definition of and answer to the wrongness of approach in so far as its Eight directives explicitly define what is right? And was this not discovered and disseminated by the Buddha Himself who personally experienced both sides of this coin, namely the wrongness and rightness, in order to overcome the same and attain balance in the Middle Way?
This topic does not address Prajnaparamita – the Perfection of Wisdom – beyond judgement – where right and wrong no longer have any meaning at all and are finally reduced to the same constructs being bantered about in countless social media threads. It was a simple question, one which only the Buddha was able to appropriately answer. And He did. And He left us teachings based on the unparalleled wisdom He was able to obtain by virtue of His discovered wrongness.
One might even go so far as to deduce that it was the discovery of the wrongness of His approach to Life itself that lead to the formulation of the Four Noble Truths viz. #1 Life is Suffering. He sure knew that to be wrong!
…is a Saiva Tantrika, Gyana Yogi and founder of Uma Maheshwara Yoga & Ayurveda. David has an MA in Semiotics, lives in Japan with his family and works as a coach in L & D, devoting his time to developing science-based tools and programs that help people reach the fullest potential of the human condition.