Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:suriyopama wrote:I know families that had to struggle with very difficult economic situations because they donated too much money, and they were avoiding friendship with "non-believers". But they were not able to see the cause of the problem because their minds were absorbed. Shouldn’t we have a little bit of compassion, and voice concerns about the dangers of the cults?
The true teachings of the Buddha are freely available, even if they are hard to distinguish from false teachings. Anyone who is wise can learn them. We do not need to be concerned with those who follow cults or wrong paths. Just teach the Dhamma, neither disparaging nor condoning others. Those who have the necessary wisdom to understand will do so. Those who have past bad kamma will not listen — being themselves motivated by greed they will donate to the greedy. If one attacks evil-doers, the gullible will defend their own teachers, and close their ears to your criticisms. So what is there to gain from this?
There are plenty of Theravāda monks with the same fault of greed, who amplify the benefits of giving charity, and downplay the benefits of study and practice. Of all the Theravāda monks who have nothing to do with the Dhammakāya, what proportion of them accept and make use of money? I reckon it is well over 90%. Should we concern ourselves with those millions in donations given to shameless Theravādin monks by gullible devotees who think that such adhamma dāna is meritorious?
I say, do not trouble yourself with that. Teach the genuine Dhamma, and practice it as well as you know how. If you cannot practice it perfectly, teach it anyway, but be ready to admit your own faults and limitations. To see the faults of others is easy, but it doesn't lead towards the cessation of suffering.
Now is the Dhamma-ending age. Those with good perfections are rare. Many place their faith in amulets, and anxiously “accumulate merit” hoping to meet Metteyya Buddha, or to enjoy celestial pleasures after death. The flood of false teachings cannot be turned back by anyone until the next Buddha appears. Meanwhile, the true teachings of Gotama Buddha are still extant — but it takes sincere and diligent effort to find them, and having found them, to practice them well.
Thank you for your words, Bhante. That is what I needed to listen at this moment.
Many of us have the tendency to do our best to improve or fix the things around us. Since I was pointed by my coworkers to be their staff representative, part of my duty is to point wrong-doing of persons with very good reputation (all of you may know our boss; I work for the largest non-profit organization on this world, but we shall not mention it for the sake of "reputation"). I am very disgusted to see so much wrong doing, hypocrisy and lack of integrity, that I cannot avoid to do all that is on my hands to try making things better. But I understand that in some point of my practice I will have to decide to take a further step to say STOP and search for seclusion “putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world”.
On the other side, there are many monks that are, or have been proactively pointing wrong-doing and doing campaigns working for a better society and reduce suffering, and they are therefore involved in politics, environment, human rights, etc. It is what some call “Engaged Buddhism”. Bikkhu Bodhi , Ajahn Brahm, Maha Boowa, Thich Nhat Hanh… The list is very long.
I have found this interesting readings, although there are hundreds of them about this topic:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el285.html
I am wondering what is your view.