Starving Oneself to Death

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Starving Oneself to Death

Postby bga » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:42 pm

After reading http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/sex-and-death-on-the-road-to-nirvana-20130606 from the Rolling Stone magazine about a Tibetan Buddhist :quote: cult in which a member died from severe dehydration, I've become concerned and confused. This organization (Diamond Mountain) is not traditionally Buddhist, and yet the Buddha himself fasted for many days on end, nearly to the point of death. Is this practice encouraged by the Buddha? I know that fasting is, but even in pursuit of enlightenment, hurting oneself to the point of disrepair seems almost irresponsible. Thoughts?
:anjali:
Well-makers lead the water (wherever they like)
fletchers bend the arrow
carpenters bend a log of wood
wise people fashion themselves
-Dhp (80)
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Re: Starving Oneself to Death

Postby Ben » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:52 pm

It was actually an ascetic practice rejected by the Buddha as not conducive to the path.
Anyone who thinks that extreme fasting and Buddhism are compatible are mistaken.
kind regards,

Ben
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Re: Starving Oneself to Death

Postby BlackBird » Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:10 am

Someone ought to send a correction the journalist who wrote the piece.
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
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Re: Starving Oneself to Death

Postby santa100 » Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:17 am

In MN 25 ( http://palicanon.org/index.php/sutta-pi ... a-the-bait ), the Buddha gave a great simile to taught us the "middle way" which avoids both extremes of indulgence in sensual pleasures and extreme austerites..
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Re: Starving Oneself to Death

Postby chownah » Thu Jul 04, 2013 2:43 am

I think that the term fasting can be applied to the Buddhas promoting of abstaining from food after noon.....but of course this is not at all what is being discussed.......but on the other hand it can be said that the Buddha did suggest that fasting is beneficial given an expanded meaning for fasting.
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Re: Starving Oneself to Death

Postby robertk » Thu Jul 04, 2013 2:52 am

He (roach)spent ten years always within 15 feet of his consort.
I think anyone who can endurw that has superhuman powers. Bodhisatta of the year?
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Re: Starving Oneself to Death

Postby Ben » Thu Jul 04, 2013 4:45 am

robertk wrote:Bodhisatta of the year?

No, I wouldn't call him that.
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Hereclitus


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