‘The arising of form and the ceasing of form – everything that has been heard, sensed, and known, sought after and reached by the mind – all this is the embodied world, to be penetrated and realized.’ Buddha, from the Samyutta Nikāya.
Gautama Buddha (‘the Buddha’) did not claim to be God, or a god, nor a ‘son’ or ‘agent’ of any such god, nor even a prophet. When asked about himself, he simply said, ‘I am awake.’ The essence of being ‘awake’ is this---always stay mindfully present from one moment to the next ... and 'come and see.'
Japan, June 2011
The Buddha taught that it is through the regular practice of mindfulness (sati) from one moment to the next, that we experience---note that word experience---life directly ... without those mental filters and psychological barriers which we tend to erect between ourselves and the objects of experience. Alan Watts, a well-known authority on Buddhism (and Zen Buddhism, in particular), has written that ‘the method of Buddhism is above all the practice of clear awareness, of seeing the world [that is, ‘things’] yathābhūtam – just as it is [they are]’, for it is recorded in the Pāli texts that the Buddha said, Bhūtam bhūtatopassati (‘See a thing as it really is’). He was talking about things (bhūta) that can be directly experienced. Now, in order to do that successfully, the Buddha made it unambiguously clear---as I hope I have as well in many previous posts---that we must not put any barriers between ourselves and external reality – barriers such as beliefs, views (especially speculative ones), thoughts, ideas, theories, opinions, and doctrines.