One's duty

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Re: One's duty

Postby Aloka » Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:49 am

steve19800 wrote:
Aloka wrote:
McKoll wrote:I speculate that many moral dilemmas like these as the fruit of bad kamma


I really can't see any point in speculating about the results of kamma, especially as the Buddha said that "The [precise working out of the] results of kamma" was "unconjecturable"

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an04/an04.077.than.html



:anjali:



Because he is Samma-Sam-buddha, he knows everything what most beings don't know. Even generous people we can't really say he will live abundance life in the next as we don't know precisely. But when someone suffers, born handicapped for example that is for sure is not the result of the good deeds.


In my opinion, Kamma doesn't work like a cosmic punishment/rewards system.

.
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Re: One's duty

Postby binocular » Mon Jan 27, 2014 1:36 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
binocular wrote:Many people claim to be Buddhists, and they sometimes have very different views on the same matter.
You mean that there is only one truly true Buddhist point of view and if there is not adherence to that they are only "people [who] claim to be Buddhist"?

No. You are the one suggesting that.

It's trivially true that different people who claim to be Buddhists have a different take on the matter.


steve19800 wrote:lol.. it's simple question guys, what is your opinion that's it.

It's not a simple question.

There are, for example, some people who claim to be Buddhists, who will reply that it is sometimes skillful to kill.

Take the Mahayanist secondary Bodhisattva vows, for example:

Four Faulty Actions That Concern Situations in Which Our Main Consideration Is Others
/.../

(4) Not committing a destructive action when love and compassion call for it

Occasionally, certain extreme situations arise in which the welfare of others is seriously jeopardized and there is no alternative left to prevent a tragedy other than committing one of the seven destructive physical or verbal actions. These seven are taking a life, taking what has not been given to us, indulging in inappropriate sexual behavior, lying, speaking divisively, using harsh and cruel language, or chattering meaninglessly. If we commit such an action without any disturbing emotion at the time, such as anger, desire, or naivety about cause and effect, but are motivated only by the wish to prevent others' suffering – being totally willing to accept on ourselves whatever negative consequences may come, even hellish pain – we do not damage our far-reaching ethical self-discipline. In fact, we build up a tremendous amount of positive force that speeds us on our spiritual paths.

Refusing to commit these destructive actions when necessity demands is at fault, however, only if we have taken and keep purely bodhisattva vows. Our reticence to exchange our happiness for the welfare of others hampers our perfection of the ethical self-discipline to help others always. There is no fault if we have only superficial compassion and do not keep bodhisattva vows or train in the conduct outlined by them. We realize that since our compassion is weak and unstable, the resulting suffering we would experience from our destructive actions might easily cause us to begrudge bodhisattva conduct. We might even give up the path of working to help others. Like the injunction that bodhisattvas on lower stages of development only damage themselves and their abilities to help others if they attempt practices of bodhisattvas on higher stages – such as feeding their flesh to a hungry tigress – it is better for us to remain cautious and hold back.

Since there may be confusion about what circumstances call for such bodhisattva action, let us look at examples taken from the commentary literature. Please keep in mind that these are last resort actions when all other means fail to alleviate or prevent others' suffering. As a budding bodhisattva, we are willing to take the life of someone about to commit a mass murder. We have no hesitation in confiscating medicines intended for relief efforts in a war-torn country that someone has taken to sell on the black market, or taking away a charity's funds from an administrator who is squandering or mismanaging them. We are willing, if male, to have sex with another's wife – or with an unmarried woman whose parents forbid it, or with any other inappropriate partner – when the woman has the strong wish to develop bodhichittabut is overwhelmed with desire for sex with us and who, if she were to die not having had sex with us, would carry the grudge as an instinct into future lives. As a result, she would be extremelyhostile toward bodhisattvas and the bodhisattva path.

Bodhisattvas' willingness to engage in inappropriate sexual acts when all else fails to help prevent someone from developing an extremely negative attitude toward the spiritual path of altruism raises an important point for married couples on the bodhisattva path to consider. Sometimes a couple becomes involved in Dharma and one of them, for instance the woman, wishing to be celibate, stops sexual relations with her husband when he is not of the same mind. He still has attachment to sex and takes her decision as a personal rejection. Sometimes the wife's fanaticism and lack of sensitivity drives her husband to blame his frustration and unhappiness on the Dharma. He leaves the marriage and turns his back on Buddhism with bitter resentment. If there is no other way to avoid his hostile reaction toward the spiritual path and the woman is keeping bodhisattva vows, she would do well to evaluate her compassion to determine if it is strong enough to allow her to have occasional sex with her husband without serious harm to her ability to help others. This is very relevant in terms of the tantric vows concerning chaste behavior.

As budding bodhisattvas, we are willing to lie when it saves others' lives or prevents others from being tortured and maimed. We have no hesitation to speak divisively to separate our children from a wrong crowd of friends – or disciples from misleading teachers – who are exerting negative influences on them and encouraging harmful attitudes and behavior. We do not refrain from using harsh language to rouse our children from negative ways, like not doing their homework, when they will not listen to reason. And when others, interested in Buddhism, are totally addicted to chattering, drinking, partying, singing, dancing, or telling off-color jokes or stories of violence, we are willing to join in if refusal would make these persons feel that bodhisattvas, and Buddhists in general, never have fun and that the spiritual path is not for them.
/.../
http://www.berzinarchives.com/web/en/ar ... edges.html
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Re: One's duty

Postby binocular » Mon Jan 27, 2014 2:06 pm

steve19800 wrote:Well, obviously even though you know you can't prove it scientifically. Science has no exact tool to measure someone's kamma but that doesn't mean you don't know at least from what you have experienced.


With karma, there are two teachings that seem to be at odds:

One is from the sutta on the unconjecturables, namely, that the exact workings of karma are not to be speculated about.

The other is on this/that conditionality, and the instruction to reflect on one's actions and their consequences (such as in the instructions to Rahula) that suggests there is a causal relationship and that we can get insight into it.

I don't think the two teachings are mutually exclusive. While one might certainly not be able to have full insight into the workings of karma at all times, that doesn't mean that the whole principle of reflecting on actions and their consequences should be dismissed.

Personally, I find that the very act of reflecting on possible cause-effect scenarios is enough to lead to dispassion and to a calmer approach to the situation.
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Re: One's duty

Postby culaavuso » Mon Jan 27, 2014 4:28 pm

steve19800 wrote:But if that's the only way will you kill with no intention?


This question seems confused since it both asks about a decision and says that there is no decision to be made. For something to be the "only way" means there is no point in asking what someone would do because the nature of physics and conditionality is such that the outcome is a given. Making a choice to kill is an intention. Kamma is not a judge that will punish or reward you based on whether or not you can make a convincing argument that you "didn't want to". It's a natural cause and effect. Claiming that a choice is the "only way" is itself a choice that is made to deliberately lie to oneself about what intentions are present. Being honest about what is done and what is experienced in all circumstances is critical to developing insight into how conditionality operates.

MN 61
MN 61: Ambalatthika-rahulovada Sutta wrote:Then the Blessed One, having left a little bit of water in the water dipper, said to Ven. Rahula, "Rahula, do you see this little bit of left-over water remaining in the water dipper?"

"Yes, sir."

"That's how little of a contemplative there is in anyone who feels no shame at telling a deliberate lie."

Having tossed away the little bit of left-over water, the Blessed One said to Ven. Rahula, "Rahula, do you see how this little bit of left-over water is tossed away?"

"Yes, sir."

"Rahula, whatever there is of a contemplative in anyone who feels no shame at telling a deliberate lie is tossed away just like that."


Contemplation of these kinds of hypothetical situations is not the path to developing the discernment necessary to achieve release. As previous posters have already mentioned, if you practice to the best of your ability in your current situation then you will be better equipped to handle such a situation skillfully if it arises in the future.

MN 58
MN 58: Abhaya Sutta wrote:"Lord, when wise nobles or brahmans, householders or contemplatives, having formulated questions, come to the Tathagata and ask him, does this line of reasoning appear to his awareness beforehand — 'If those who approach me ask this, I — thus asked — will answer in this way' — or does the Tathagata come up with the answer on the spot?"

"In that case, prince, I will ask you a counter-question. Answer as you see fit. What do you think: are you skilled in the parts of a chariot?"

"Yes, lord. I am skilled in the parts of a chariot."

"And what do you think: When people come & ask you, 'What is the name of this part of the chariot?' does this line of reasoning appear to your awareness beforehand — 'If those who approach me ask this, I — thus asked — will answer in this way' — or do you come up with the answer on the spot?"

"Lord, I am renowned for being skilled in the parts of a chariot. All the parts of a chariot are well-known to me. I come up with the answer on the spot."

"In the same way, prince, when wise nobles or brahmans, householders or contemplatives, having formulated questions, come to the Tathagata and ask him, he comes up with the answer on the spot. Why is that? Because the property of the Dhamma is thoroughly penetrated by the Tathagata. From his thorough penetration of the property of the Dhamma, he comes up with the answer on the spot."


Maintaining unlimited good will includes good will for beings that are doing things you do not like, no matter how extreme.

Sn 1.8
Sn 1.8: Karaniya-Metta Sutta wrote:Think: Happy, at rest,
may all beings be happy at heart.
Whatever beings there may be,
weak or strong, without exception,
long, large,
middling, short,
subtle, blatant,
seen & unseen,
near & far,
born & seeking birth:
May all beings be happy at heart.

Let no one deceive another
or despise anyone anywhere,
or through anger or irritation
wish for another to suffer.

As a mother would risk her life
to protect her child, her only child,
even so should one cultivate a limitless heart
with regard to all beings.
With good will for the entire cosmos,
cultivate a limitless heart:
Above, below, & all around,
unobstructed, without enmity or hate.
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Re: One's duty

Postby Mkoll » Mon Jan 27, 2014 5:20 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Mkoll wrote:I speculate that many moral dilemmas like these as the fruit of bad kamma. If you're actually in a situation where you have to kill someone to protect your loved ones and there is no other option (like talking to the assailant), that is the fruit of bad kamma indeed
Maybe, but you don't know that.

Of course not. That's why I used the word speculate in the sense of this definition: "reasoning based on inconclusive evidence; conjecture or supposition." I am definitely not trying to make an argument here. However, I will preface any future speculation of this nature with the word "rampant" to make it more clear to others in what sense I am using the word "speculate".

Claiming that a choice is the "only way" is itself a choice that is made to deliberately lie to oneself about what intentions are present. Being honest about what is done and what is experienced in all circumstances is critical to developing insight into how conditionality operates.

:goodpost:

:anjali:
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Re: One's duty

Postby binocular » Mon Jan 27, 2014 5:52 pm

steve19800 wrote:Also it is our duty to protect our family member or loved ones. But to what extent? I think it is personal matter since some people for example are happy to kill if that is the only way to protect the family member while others choose not to kill because everyone has their own Kamma. And if you don't kill does it mean you are neglecting your duty? What is your view on his, can you please share?? Thank you.


Here's an opinion of a Buddhist on just this matter:

/.../
Mostly these are examples of what I call “extreme ethics,” ethical conundrums where someone has to die or suffer horribly or violate serious taboos. (The significant exception is the sexual one. This is just a case where a marriage has outlived its usefulness and the two people should go their separate ways.) In cases of extreme ethics there is no escape for the would-be virtuous person, no dodging the bullet. Either they sin by commission or by omission—sinning is not optional. These situations exist and they have to be considered if we are going to create—and practice—a mature ethic of living.

The issue I’m most interested in here is where somebody killing or dying appears unavoidable, and this is clearly what interested Sophia. She seemed of the opinion that Mahayanists were lax in this regard, less strict about the precept on not killing than Theravadans are. She may have a point. That is, I think there have been more instances of excuse-making within the Mahayana tradition as regards this precept than within the Theravada. Note, however, that I’m not going to try documenting this suspicion with textual evidence because I really don’t care which tradition is “better” or more “pure.” What interests me is the question of whether or not, in certain circumstances, it might be the “right” thing or at least the “better” thing to kill than not to kill.
/.../
My challenge to the Sophias of the world is this: Show me one instance in the Suttas or Vinaya where the Buddha or a rightly practicing disciple allowed him or herself or anyone else in immediate proximity to be murdered, beaten or raped while offering no resistance, even if it was just the exercise of psychic powers to effect escape or change the circumstances. If you can show me one unambiguous example I will reevaluate and, possibly, recant the position I have elaborated here.
http://buddhistbooksblog.wordpress.com/ ... me-ethics/



I think he is arguing against a strawman, as nobody suggested complete passivity in the face of being attacked.

He does state though that there are situations where sinning is not optional - where whatever one would do, would be a sin.

I'm not sure this holds, though.
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Re: One's duty

Postby steve19800 » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:30 am

culaavuso wrote:
steve19800 wrote:But if that's the only way will you kill with no intention?


This question seems confused since it both asks about a decision and says that there is no decision to be made. For something to be the "only way" means there is no point in asking what someone would do because the nature of physics and conditionality is such that the outcome is a given. Making a choice to kill is an intention. Kamma is not a judge that will punish or reward you based on whether or not you can make a convincing argument that you "didn't want to". It's a natural cause and effect. Claiming that a choice is the "only way" is itself a choice that is made to deliberately lie to oneself about what intentions are present. Being honest about what is done and what is experienced in all circumstances is critical to developing insight into how conditionality operates.

MN 61
MN 61: Ambalatthika-rahulovada Sutta wrote:Then the Blessed One, having left a little bit of water in the water dipper, said to Ven. Rahula, "Rahula, do you see this little bit of left-over water remaining in the water dipper?"

"Yes, sir."

"That's how little of a contemplative there is in anyone who feels no shame at telling a deliberate lie."

Having tossed away the little bit of left-over water, the Blessed One said to Ven. Rahula, "Rahula, do you see how this little bit of left-over water is tossed away?"

"Yes, sir."

"Rahula, whatever there is of a contemplative in anyone who feels no shame at telling a deliberate lie is tossed away just like that."



Maybe the possible scenario I posted was not accurate enough. So let me just pick one, a thief comes into your house at night he holds a gun on wife's head, he demands you to give him certain amount of cash which you don't have. This guy has a knife or a gun (don't ask me why he has gun), you want to safe your wife and you know the best thing to do is to shoot this guy, no second opportunity and you want to make it right.

Hope this scenario is good enough. If your intention is to protect your wife, do you need to consider whether you sow a good or a bad seed?
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Re: One's duty

Postby Mkoll » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:44 am

Maybe the thief stole your gun in your house and now he's threatening your wife with it. And now you bear responsibility if your wife gets hurt.

There's no problem that violence or the threat of violence can't make worse.
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Re: One's duty

Postby Kim OHara » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:47 am

steve19800 wrote:Maybe the possible scenario I posted was not accurate enough. So let me just pick one, a thief comes into your house at night he holds a gun on wife's head, he demands you to give him certain amount of cash which you don't have. This guy has a knife or a gun (don't ask me why he has gun), you want to safe your wife and you know the best thing to do is to shoot this guy, no second opportunity and you want to make it right.

Hope this scenario is good enough. If your intention is to protect your wife, do you need to consider whether you sow a good or a bad seed?

Hi, Steve,
How about we talk about this after it has happened to one of us - but not before?
We might have to hold off for about ... umm ... 1000 years but that would be better than this endless series of futile hypothetical questions.
When the time comes - if the time comes - all we can do is respond to the best of our knowledge and ability.

:namaste:
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Re: One's duty

Postby binocular » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:51 pm

I've always had issues with dogs, and I've had some bad encounters with dogs. I've thought about them a lot before, and then after. And I can see that once the situation actually occurs, it's very different from what I imagined it would be.
Much to my surprise, while in the scenarios I've thought up in my mind, there was no way out, later on, in reality, there's always been a way out.

(And the scenarios I've thought up were just standard scenarios one hears about in the news or reads about in books on dog aggression.)
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Re: One's duty

Postby Atanavat » Sun Feb 23, 2014 9:38 pm

I really like this thread and the debate, please continue :woohoo:
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Re: One's duty

Postby Atanavat » Sun Feb 23, 2014 9:52 pm

steve19800 wrote:
Maybe the possible scenario I posted was not accurate enough. So let me just pick one, a thief comes into your house at night he holds a gun on wife's head, he demands you to give him certain amount of cash which you don't have. This guy has a knife or a gun (don't ask me why he has gun), you want to safe your wife and you know the best thing to do is to shoot this guy, no second opportunity and you want to make it right.

Hope this scenario is good enough. If your intention is to protect your wife, do you need to consider whether you sow a good or a bad seed?


Why would it be bad to shoot the thief and save your wife? 1: You save the thief from the bad karma he will receive if he kills her (compassion). 2: You spare yourself of the anguish of letting her die (compassion to self). 3: You give her more time to improve her karmic chances (compassion). 4: The thief might also kill you, so you give yourself more time to improve your karma (compassion to self). 5. It is likely that you are "better" people than the thief, so you rid the world of his bad influences and gives the world more of your compassion, because you live on (compassion to all) Surely this choice is vastly superior.
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Re: One's duty

Postby culaavuso » Sun Feb 23, 2014 10:26 pm

Atanavat wrote:1: You save the thief from the bad karma he will receive if he kills her (compassion).


From what motivation? If this is done from a sense of aversion to loss and greed for what is dear then it seems unwise. It also results in dark kamma from intentionally killing another being, which is thus not compassionate towards everyone involved in the situation.

AN 3.69
AN 3.69: Mula Sutta wrote:Monks, there are these three roots of what is unskillful. Which three? Greed is a root of what is unskillful, aversion is a root of what is unskillful, delusion is a root of what is unskillful.


AN 8.41
AN 8.41: Uposatha Sutta wrote:All arahants, for as long as life lasts, have given up the intentional taking of life. The club and sword have been laid down. They have shame (of doing evil) and are compassionate toward all beings.


Atanavat wrote:2: You spare yourself of the anguish of letting her die (compassion to self).


It is useful to distinguish compassion for oneself from greed and aversion for the eight worldly conditions. The motivation to spare yourself the anguish of losing what is dear is aversion to loss rooted in delusion. True compassion for oneself would include consideration of the kamma of intentionally killing a human being.

This is perhaps one reason why the Buddha recommended as one of the contemplations from AN 5.57
AN 5.57: Upajjhatthana Sutta wrote:I will grow different, separate from all that is dear and appealing to me.


AN 8.6
AN 8.6: Lokavipatti Sutta wrote:He welcomes the arisen gain and rebels against the arisen loss. He welcomes the arisen status and rebels against the arisen disgrace. He welcomes the arisen praise and rebels against the arisen censure. He welcomes the arisen pleasure and rebels against the arisen pain. As he is thus engaged in welcoming & rebelling, he is not released from birth, aging, or death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, or despairs. He is not released, I tell you, from suffering & stress.


Atanavat wrote:3: You give her more time to improve her karmic chances (compassion).


This choice would also cut short the thief's chances to make the most of this precious human birth while creating difficulties for the killer's quest for liberation through the kamma of intentional killing.

Atanavat wrote:4: The thief might also kill you, so you give yourself more time to improve your karma (compassion to self).


The thief might also kill neither one of you if he hears an inspirational Dhamma talk. This is one reason why discussions of such hypothetical situations are often unfruitful. The variables which influence the situation can never be fully specified without encountering an actual situation. A skillful action resulting in everyone surviving is the ideal outcome. True compassion for oneself includes the consideration of the consequences of kamma. Ideally, compassion is developed as an unbounded compassion for all beings without limit.

Snp 1.8
Snp 1.8: Karaniya Metta Sutta wrote:With good will for the entire cosmos,
cultivate a limitless heart


MN 21
MN 21: Kakacupama Sutta wrote:Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: 'Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic, with a mind of good will, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading these people with an awareness imbued with good will and, beginning with them, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an awareness imbued with good will — abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.'


Atanavat wrote:5. It is likely that you are "better" people than the thief, so you rid the world of his bad influences and gives the world more of your compassion, because you live on (compassion to all) Surely this choice is vastly superior.


This seems to suggest conceit (thinking "I am superior"), aversion to the activities of the thief, and a willingness to discard virtue when it is expedient to do so. Such choices thus seem to be influenced through passion for a sense of self and for the eight conditions of the world.

SN 53.36
SN 53.36: Vidha Sutta wrote:There are, bhikkhus, these three types of conceit. Which three? The conceit 'I am superior', the conceit 'I am equal', the conceit 'I am inferior'.


SN 55.31
SN 55.31: Abhisanda Sutta wrote:the disciple of the noble ones is endowed with virtues that are appealing to the noble ones: untorn, unbroken, unspotted, unsplattered, liberating, praised by the wise, untarnished, leading to concentration. This is the fourth bonanza of merit, bonanza of skillfulness, nourishment of bliss.


AN 8.53
AN 8.53: Gotami Sutta wrote:Gotami, the qualities of which you may know, 'These qualities lead to passion, not to dispassion; to being fettered, not to being unfettered; to accumulating, not to shedding; to self-aggrandizement, not to modesty; to discontent, not to contentment; to entanglement, not to seclusion; to laziness, not to aroused persistence; to being burdensome, not to being unburdensome': You may categorically hold, 'This is not the Dhamma, this is not the Vinaya, this is not the Teacher's instruction.'
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Re: One's duty

Postby Atanavat » Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:45 pm

culaavuso wrote:
Atanavat wrote:1: You save the thief from the bad karma he will receive if he kills her (compassion).


From what motivation? If this is done from a sense of aversion to loss and greed for what is dear then it seems unwise. It also results in dark kamma from intentionally killing another being, which is thus not compassionate towards everyone involved in the situation.


Intention here is compassion towards the wife (or another victim if preferred) the choice is to kill the thief or he kills his chosen victim (or so you are absolutely convinced) so you are killing the "wife" victim by inaction.

culaavuso wrote:Monks, there are these three roots of what is unskillful. Which three? Greed is a root of what is unskillful, aversion is a root of what is unskillful, delusion is a root of what is unskillful.


So greed is bad karma-got it. You are killing the thief because otherwise the victim will die, so what is the "not greedy" choice ? kill thief or not.

culaavuso wrote:All arahants, for as long as life lasts, have given up the intentional taking of life. The club and sword have been laid down. They have shame (of doing evil) and are compassionate toward all beings.


Kill thief or not?

culaavuso wrote:
Atanavat wrote:2: You spare yourself of the anguish of letting her die (compassion to self).


It is useful to distinguish compassion for oneself from greed and aversion for the eight worldly conditions. The motivation to spare yourself the anguish of losing what is dear is aversion to loss rooted in delusion. True compassion for oneself would include consideration of the kamma of intentionally killing a human being.

This is perhaps one reason why the Buddha recommended as one of the contemplations from AN 5.57

I will grow different, separate from all that is dear and appealing to me.


So it is better to let the wife die and the thief live because that is more "separating from all that is dear and appealing to me." ?

culaavuso wrote:He welcomes the arisen gain and rebels against the arisen loss. He welcomes the arisen status and rebels against the arisen disgrace. He welcomes the arisen praise and rebels against the arisen censure. He welcomes the arisen pleasure and rebels against the arisen pain. As he is thus engaged in welcoming & rebelling, he is not released from birth, aging, or death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, or despairs. He is not released, I tell you, from suffering & stress.


So kill thief or not ? both choices have arisen, so choose.

culaavuso wrote:
Atanavat wrote:3: You give her more time to improve her karmic chances (compassion).


This choice would also cut short the thief's chances to make the most of this precious human birth while creating difficulties for the killer's quest for liberation through the kamma of intentional killing.


That sounds very suspect, I should not save a drowning man because it will rob him of this "bad karma burning" he is so busy with ?

Atanavat wrote:4: The thief might also kill you, so you give yourself more time to improve your karma (compassion to self).

culaavuso wrote:The thief might also kill neither one of you if he hears an inspirational Dhamma talk. This is one reason why discussions of such hypothetical situations are often unfruitful. The variables which influence the situation can never be fully specified without encountering an actual situation. A skillful action resulting in everyone surviving is the ideal outcome. True compassion for oneself includes the consideration of the consequences of kamma. Ideally, compassion is developed as an unbounded compassion for all beings without limit.


Nope he is defintely killing the wife, and the inspirational Dhammatalk was cancelled due to bad karma - I mean weather :D

culaavuso wrote:With good will for the entire cosmos,
cultivate a limitless heart

Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: 'Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic, with a mind of good will, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading these people with an awareness imbued with good will and, beginning with them, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an awareness imbued with good will — abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.'


Yeah sure that's cool, but this is not a choice where you can forgive someone for their misdeeds against you. This is between two people you can save one or the other.

culaavuso wrote:
Atanavat wrote:5. It is likely that you are "better" people than the thief, so you rid the world of his bad influences and gives the world more of your compassion, because you live on (compassion to all) Surely this choice is vastly superior.


This seems to suggest conceit (thinking "I am superior"), aversion to the activities of the thief, and a willingness to discard virtue when it is expedient to do so. Such choices thus seem to be influenced through passion for a sense of self and for the eight conditions of the world.


SN 53.36: Vidha Sutta wrote:There are, bhikkhus, these three types of conceit. Which three? The conceit 'I am superior', the conceit 'I am equal', the conceit 'I am inferior'.


i agree with that critique.

SN 55.31: Abhisanda Sutta wrote:the disciple of the noble ones is endowed with virtues that are appealing to the noble ones: untorn, unbroken, unspotted, unsplattered, liberating, praised by the wise, untarnished, leading to concentration. This is the fourth bonanza of merit, bonanza of skillfulness, nourishment of bliss.


:coffee:

AN 8.53: Gotami Sutta wrote:Gotami, the qualities of which you may know, 'These qualities lead to passion, not to dispassion; to being fettered, not to being unfettered; to accumulating, not to shedding; to self-aggrandizement, not to modesty; to discontent, not to contentment; to entanglement, not to seclusion; to laziness, not to aroused persistence; to being burdensome, not to being unburdensome': You may categorically hold, 'This is not the Dhamma, this is not the Vinaya, this is not the Teacher's instruction.'


:namaste:
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Re: One's duty

Postby boris » Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:52 pm

daverupa wrote:
steve19800 wrote:Buddha says the moment we are facing death is very crucial.


Not so:

SN 55.21 wrote:...'If I were to die at this moment, what would be my destination? What would be my future course?"

"Have no fear, Mahanama! Have no fear! Your death will not be a bad one, your demise will not be bad. If one's mind has long been nurtured with conviction, nurtured with virtue, nurtured with learning, nurtured with relinquishment, nurtured with discernment...


In terms of protecting people, various contexts call for different responses. The essential thing is the cultivation of right intention; during the spontaneous unfolding of complex new threats to individuals in one's care, the first and most readily available responses will be the ones that have been given long attention, long beforehand. Protecting others rightly integrates mental development first and foremost.


State of mind at the death time is very important, so this „not so” is rather mistaken. Mahanama was anyway sotapanna, so he was out of danger, but non-ariyan should be very careful at the death time. For example I heard an opinion that to die during sexual intercourse would be the most pleasant kind of death, while in reality, it can end up in disaster. Also we must consider that taking strong pain killers while dying may have same unpredictable consequences.
18. (iv) "Now there is the person who has abstained from killing living beings here... has had right view. And on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.[12] But (perhaps) the evil action producing his suffering was done by him earlier, or the evilaction producing his suffering was done by him later, or wrong view was undertaken and completed by him at the time of his death.
M 136 http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nymo.html

It would be better, bhikkhus, for the eye faculty to be lacerated by a red-hot iron pin burning, blazing, and glowing, than for one to grasp the sign through the features in a form cognizable by the eye. For if consciousness should stand tied to gratification in the sign or in the features, and if one should die on that occasion, it is possible that one will go to one of two destinations: hell or the animal realm. Having seen this danger, I speak thus.
SN 35: 235 http://suttacentral.net/sn35.235/en

This goes of course in opposite direction too, sotapanna dying in the state of jhana becomes non-returner. Also Suttas suggest that for realization of nibbana death time can be very supportive.
The man who wants to avoid grotesque collapses should not look for anything to fulfill him in space and time.

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Re: One's duty

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:59 pm

Householder to thief, “Please wait a bit while I visit the Dhamma Wheel forum and check if it's OK to shoot you. If they say no, then you can rape my wife and steal my property before shooting us both.”

Former Head of Corrections says that carrying out an execution is murder.

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Re: One's duty

Postby Atanavat » Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:24 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Householder to thief, “Please wait a bit while I visit the Dhamma Wheel forum and check if it's OK to shoot you. If they say no, then you can rape my wife and steal my property before shooting us both.”

Former Head of Corrections says that carrying out an execution is murder.

Allen Ault: The day I sent a man to the electric chair


Grim humor, but I like :thumbsup:
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Re: One's duty

Postby Mkoll » Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:41 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Householder to thief, “Please wait a bit while I visit the Dhamma Wheel forum and check if it's OK to shoot you. If they say no, then you can rape my wife and steal my property before shooting us both.”

Former Head of Corrections says that carrying out an execution is murder.

Allen Ault: The day I sent a man to the electric chair


:rofl:

Obviously the best course of action.
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Re: One's duty

Postby culaavuso » Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:44 am

Atanavat wrote:Intention here is compassion towards the wife (or another victim if preferred) the choice is to kill the thief or he kills his chosen victim (or so you are absolutely convinced) so you are killing the "wife" victim by inaction.


This false dichotomy is why hypothetical situations of this sort are problematic. Action has much more potential than simply choosing between A or B. The best choice in such a situation is likely to be the middle way avoiding both extremes. Perhaps the thief can be talked out of killing, or perhaps the thief can be distracted allowing the wife to escape, or perhaps the thief's ability to kill can be compromised without killing the thief, or any of a large number of other alternatives. Choosing to ignore alternatives is not the way to end ignorance.

As was discussed earlier in this thread, the best approach is to practice compassion, equanimity, and clear awareness now so that if such a situation arises in the future these alternatives can be seen and there won't be a limitation imposed on action by the view that only two choices are available. When such a situation arises, anyone in that situation must do the best they can given all of the specific details and capacities available at that time.
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Re: One's duty

Postby Mkoll » Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:57 am

culaavuso wrote:This false dichotomy is why hypothetical situations of this sort are problematic. Action has much more potential than simply choosing between A or B. The best choice in such a situation is likely to be the middle way avoiding both extremes.

:goodpost:
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