I am sort of with this ... though I am highly skeptical of morality and to some extent ethics.
If free will is an illusion, then morality needs a good careful look. And I think Genesis 3:22 points the way.
Why look at this through a Jesus or even a Christ lens. Why not look at it through a 2000 y old lens? Are there not improved lenses to look at the human condition since then? Why not make our lens? Insights from various aspects of science, evolutionary psychology is one example.
I would say that there is ethics "according to the law" and alternatively our "ethics" - words and actions - that issue choicelessly. My old mate Stephen Batchelor.......
After speaking of a psuedo integrity that responds to a moral dilemma only by repeating the gestures and words of a parent, an authority figure or a religious text, he writes:-
( we sometimes act )....in a way that startles us. A friend asks our advice about a tricky moral choice. Yet instead of offering him consoling platitudes or the wisdom of someone else, we say something that we did not know we knew. Such gestures and words spring from body and tongue with shocking spontaneity. We cannot call them "mine" but neither have we copied them from others. Compassion has dissolved the stranglehold of self. And we taste, for a few exhilarating seconds, the creative freedom of awakening.
( From "Buddhism Without Beliefs")
As Burl has implied in his post above, there is a transition between the two, variously walked. Maybe we must beware of running before we can walk. Which makes me think again of the old zen story I have told before.......of the old zen master who only speaks broken English, walking around his monastery with a newly enlightened westerner. At each and every statue of the Buddha the old master stops and bows deeply. The westerner looks on with increasing disdain and eventually exclaims "Don't you think that we are a bit above that sort of thing now? Speaking for myself, I think I would just as soon spit at those status as bow to them" To which the old master says "OK. You spit, I bow"
There is a transition that changes nothing, we just arrive at the place where we started and know it for the first time.
What is a pure freedom of mind? I'm reading a biography of Dali at the moment. There is no doubt that Dali was free of all inhibitions and the writer (who spent much time with Dali) speaks of there being many small jewels amidst "the garbage" of Dali's life. How do we judge "freedom"?
I think the mind can perform somersaults when we witness a zen master burning the very sutras that he has studied assiduously for year upon year. Has he in fact dispensed with them or turned them into a living word? What are the words themselves?
Edited by tariki, 16 March 2017 - 03:51 AM.