Buddhism: Zen and Vajrayana

Mahayana Buddhism itself has split into various forms, two major ones being Zen (in Japan) and Vajrayana (in Tibet). Zen Buddhism has a very interesting (and as Smith puts it, bizarre at first sight) way of attaining enlightenment. Zen Buddhists believe that reason is limited, for it cannot help us to think about the unseen,…

Buddhism: Theravada and Mahayana

As most religions eventually do, Buddhism has split into different denominations. Huston Smith describes reaching nirvana as going across a river, from the shore of ignorance to the other side of enlightenment and knowledge. The different kinds of Buddhism are merely different ways to the same end. Believers cross this river with a kind of…

Buddhism: Three Marks of Existence

The Buddha believed there were Three Marks of Existence 1. Dukkha (suffering) The way to combat this is by letting go of the world and entering nirvana. What is nirvana actually? Smith states it is the process of destroying the barriers the limit the finite. Some find this nihilistic, but Smith believes it is actually…

Buddhism: The Eightfold Path

The Fourth Noble Truth states that there is a way to end suffering, via the Eightfold Path. Here I list them (from Huston Smith’s “The World’s Religions”): 1. Use of good reason 2. Know your true intensions. Make them correct and genuine 3. Be truthful and kind in speech. Don’t belittle others, gossip, etc. 4.…

Buddhism: The Four Noble Truths

Buddha reached enlightenment after days of contemplation and concentration, so what did he actually come to realize? His epiphanies are known as The Four Noble Truths: 1. Life is suffering, or dukkha A quote from Huston Smith better explains the meaning behind this: The exact meaning of the First Noble Truth is this: Life (in…

Buddhism: Toward Enlightenment

I finally began the Buddhism chapter of “The World’s Religions” by Huston Smith. Once I finish, I’ll be halfway through the book (he wrote a whole lot on Hinduism and Buddhism). He starts off by telling the story of Siddhartha Gautama, a man who had everything. He was a prince, had a father who gave…

Reimbursements

I’ve started learning about how reimbursement works for physicians and hospitals. In short, it is very complicated . There are various reimbursement systems so I’ll just sum up the gist of what I learned from the third chapter of “Understanding Health Policy.” There are different ways medical care can be reimbursed to a physician or…