Why is it called the Middle Way?

TOPICS: Teaching is always for a certain level of consciousness – Hinduism stifled by doctrines – ascetics went to the other extreme – Middle Way means beyond extremes –

Question: We know that the Buddha’s teaching about the Middle Way is not the middle between two dualistic extremes. Now I’m curious about why it became called the Middle Way.

Answer from ascended master Gautama Buddha through Kim Michaels:

As we have explained many times, when we give a teaching, we are not attempting to bring forth the highest possible teaching. For we do not even operate with the concept of the highest. For this is, of course, a dualistic concept of high and low and of comparisons. So what we give is a teaching that is adapted to the specific people that we are seeking to reach. And we must adapt a teaching to their culture, to their belief system, to their state of consciousness.

So when I brought forth the teachings of Buddhism, you had a situation, where Hindu society had become so rigid with the many artificial constructs of the Brahmins, that they had solidified into the outer path of ritual. Yet on the other hand you had a long-standing tradition in India of the ascetics who had withdrawn from the world, who put their bodies through all kinds of extreme measures and tortures, almost as a way to punish the body for providing a prison for the mind.

And so it was my aim to bridge the gap, where many spiritual people of the time thought that they had to be in either one extreme or in the other. And as I discovered myself, neither extreme could lead to enlightenment. But the enlightenment had to be found somewhere, not in-between, but in a different approach.

So at the time the concept of the Middle Way, especially in the eastern culture, did not have the same meaning that you have today in the West, where the western mind is more linear—and thus thinks of the Middle Way as being the mid-point between the two extremes. Whereas to the eastern mind, especially at the time, it had a different concept, a different connotation, of being something beyond, beyond the old approaches.


Copyright © 2007 by Kim Michaels