I am going to split this off from another thread, because an important topic ...
Well, we all make questionable choices in our youth ... although they do eventually get us right where we are now.Originally Posted by Grizzly
And the Buddha certainly performed a service for the greater good of all sentient beings ... even at sacrifice of his own family.
It was the culture of the time for religious seekers to cut themselves off from ties to family and social duties ... and the Buddha was a man of his times, doing much as was done by other Indians on the spiritual path.
As was said, the Buddha before his enlightenment was certainly not quite the same fellow as before ... nor yet "the Buddha". Still, the Buddha continued to emphasize literal "home leaving" even after his insights under the Bodhi Tree ... a practice that continued for thousands of years to this day.
While the Buddha's child was certainly not left to neglect ... that cannot be said of all the wives and children left alone as the Buddha encouraged thousands of men to leave their families behind and join his flock after the Buddha's enlightenment.
Perhaps the Buddha was enlightened on some key aspects of Truth ... but that does not mean he was enlightened on all aspects of Truth.
The Buddha's teaching at that time emphasized cutting our ties as the way to cut attachments, leaving emotional relationships fully as the way to quell desires ... all very different from flavors of Buddhism emphasizing 'non-attachment amid and expressing life's connections and relations', seeing through excess desires even while holding lightly healthy and balanced desires. This is a positive development in Buddhism.
So, one need not agree with every choice and idea professed by the old boy to still find treasure in this Practice. There were other likely "clunkers" too (so much superstition and nonsense in parts of the old teachings). So long as the Buddha was 90% right, and right on all the central points ... it is fine if he made some needless and ill informed calls on the rest.
Just because the guy was "Buddha" and "enlightened" does not mean one need agree with all his so called "enlightened choices".