1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Theravāda in the 21st century - modern applications of ancient wisdom

Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby brahmabull » Sun Oct 30, 2011 4:07 am

If the lineage is broken, then it cannot be re-established by bhikkus (is how the argument goes, AFAIK).
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby brahmabull » Sun Oct 30, 2011 4:13 am

David N. Snyder wrote::goodpost:

Good posts, DanielLion and Bankei.

In about 2,600 years into this dispensation it is unrealistic to assume that somewhere along the line there was never some break in the lineage for bhikkhus either. At some time along the line there certainly must have been some preceptor with a parajika offense or some other thing making him ineligible, but that does not change the conviction in the heart of the person receiving the ordination and the subsequent men or women who followed and their conviction and practice with the Dhamma.

By focusing too much on the letter and the rules the only outcome is less worthy people ordaining or perhaps no one being allowed to ordain and the sooner the end of the Dhamma / this dispensation.


What is the status of Theravada lineage? Are there unbroken lineages?
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Oct 30, 2011 7:03 pm

brahmabull wrote:What is the status of Theravada lineage? Are there unbroken lineages?


That is debatable. I think it is unlikely that there has never been a break in any of the lineages, Theravada, Mahayana, or Vajrayana. But as I mentioned earlier, that does not change the conviction in the heart of the person receiving the ordination and keeping the tradition going and continuing this Dhamma dispensation for the good of the many.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby cooran » Sun Oct 30, 2011 7:20 pm

Hello brahmabull, all,

You may like to read through this older thread on:
Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso
viewtopic.php?f=14&t=2545

with metta
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby brahmabull » Sun Oct 30, 2011 7:33 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:
brahmabull wrote:What is the status of Theravada lineage? Are there unbroken lineages?


That is debatable. I think it is unlikely that there has never been a break in any of the lineages, Theravada, Mahayana, or Vajrayana. But as I mentioned earlier, that does not change the conviction in the heart of the person receiving the ordination and keeping the tradition going and continuing this Dhamma dispensation for the good of the many.


One would need specific historical data related to a lineage in question. Vajrayana, for example, will "Buddha-ize" a particular lineage founder and then there is generally clear unbroken status from the so-called "close lineages." (But there are many caveats in that world). It does seem as if the lineages emerging from after the Buddha's death are hard to identify. However, if we take lineages in a more abstract fashion, i.e., textual lineage, transmission lineage, practice lineage, etc., there is a very clear textual lineage with respect to the Pali literature. It does appear to be in tact and in good condition, unlike the tantra literature which is in tatters really.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Bankei » Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:51 am

danieLion wrote:@Bankei
Bhikkhuni legitimacy is not derived from lineage authority. It's derived from the authority of The Dhamma, which is public property.
DanieLion


Yes, I wasn't arguing against the reinstatement of Bhikkhuni but for it. The Bhikkhu lineage is full of holes, but largely accepted and so should the Bhikkhuni lineage.

ps. there are some monks in the Dhammayut lineage who regard themselves as the only valid bhikkhu, they would treat any Mahayanika monk as nothing more than a samenera.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:41 am

Bankei wrote:
danieLion wrote:@Bankei
Bhikkhuni legitimacy is not derived from lineage authority. It's derived from the authority of The Dhamma, which is public property.
DanieLion


Yes, I wasn't arguing against the reinstatement of Bhikkhuni but for it. The Bhikkhu lineage is full of holes, but largely accepted and so should the Bhikkhuni lineage.

ps. there are some monks in the Dhammayut lineage who regard themselves as the only valid bhikkhu, they would treat any Mahayanika monk as nothing more than a samenera.

viewtopic.php?f=19&t=3198&start=20&hilit=bhikkuni
I wrote about this on this thread. bankei you think that the bhikkhu order is now not properly ordained and that the lineage has been broken. This comes close to saying that these bhikkhus are not really bhikkhus and - in the case that the ordination lineage is still fully vaild(as i believe it is) - to accusing them of not being genuine bhiikkhus, a serious kamma to make.
It is so diiferent with the "bhikkhuni" who are long defunct and impossible to reinstate. By supporting their "ordination" one is again making serious kamma when it is clear they can never be properly ordained.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Gena1480 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:17 am

Hello i was reading the ordination book procedure
under Four Fulfilling Conditions
it says that one must be a male

http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/ordination.pdf
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby chownah » Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:05 pm

robertk wrote:http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=3198&start=20&hilit=bhikkuni
I wrote about this on this thread. bankei you think that the bhikkhu order is now not properly ordained and that the lineage has been broken. This comes close to saying that these bhikkhus are not really bhikkhus and - in the case that the ordination lineage is still fully vaild(as i believe it is) - to accusing them of not being genuine bhiikkhus, a serious kamma to make.
It is so diiferent with the "bhikkhuni" who are long defunct and impossible to reinstate. By supporting their "ordination" one is again making serious kamma when it is clear they can never be properly ordained.
I

Wow!!!! We are walking a virtual tight rope.....if we are not able to discern the truth about things and so have a wrong view then we are in for some seroius kamma!!!!maybe we are heading for the hell realm.....what is one to do if one really doesn't know which way to declare on this issue??????.......Life is so stressful!!!!.....maybe that is why people convert to christianity.....Jesus forgives all sins......in buddhism all you get is some serious kamma....
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Bankei » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:24 pm

robertk wrote:
Bankei wrote:
danieLion wrote:@Bankei
Bhikkhuni legitimacy is not derived from lineage authority. It's derived from the authority of The Dhamma, which is public property.
DanieLion


Yes, I wasn't arguing against the reinstatement of Bhikkhuni but for it. The Bhikkhu lineage is full of holes, but largely accepted and so should the Bhikkhuni lineage.

ps. there are some monks in the Dhammayut lineage who regard themselves as the only valid bhikkhu, they would treat any Mahayanika monk as nothing more than a samenera.

viewtopic.php?f=19&t=3198&start=20&hilit=bhikkuni
I wrote about this on this thread. bankei you think that the bhikkhu order is now not properly ordained and that the lineage has been broken. This comes close to saying that these bhikkhus are not really bhikkhus and - in the case that the ordination lineage is still fully vaild(as i believe it is) - to accusing them of not being genuine bhiikkhus, a serious kamma to make.
It is so diiferent with the "bhikkhuni" who are long defunct and impossible to reinstate. By supporting their "ordination" one is again making serious kamma when it is clear they can never be properly ordained.
I


Robert,

Why take such a fundamentalist view?

The Bhikkhuni are just as ordained as the Bhikkhu in my view.

Maybe you take this view because you think the non-Theravada lineages are not proper Buddhist lineages? Or maybe you consider these lineages broken?

Was the Buddha a Bhikkhu?
Was the Buddha a Buddhist or a Theravadin?

Kammically challenged

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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Zom » Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:08 pm

As for me, I think that bhikkhuni lineage can't be restored simply because of the lack of theravada bhikkhuni preceptor.
All bhikkshuni preceptors are of Mahayana-Dhamma. So then, any theravada bhikkhuni is simpy "mahayana bhikkhuni practising theravada".

Dhamma-Vinaya is one whole thing, they can't be separated. If we separate them, we may legitimately establish an order of monks with christian views )))
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby manas » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:02 pm

Zom wrote:As for me, I think that bhikkhuni lineage can't be restored simply because of the lack of theravada bhikkhuni preceptor.
All bhikkshuni preceptors are of Mahayana-Dhamma. So then, any theravada bhikkhuni is simpy "mahayana bhikkhuni practising theravada".

Dhamma-Vinaya is one whole thing, they can't be separated. If we separate them, we may legitimately establish an order of monks with christian views )))
'Ordained Mahayana, but practising Theravada'...sounds fine to me. It's what they do after their ordination, and for the rest of their monastic lives, that really counts, after all.

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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby AyyaSobhana » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:33 pm

Bhikkhu Analayo stated the case very succintly in a brief remark at the recent Spirit Rock bhikkhuni ordination. He said the textual evidence about restoring bhikkhuni ordination is "ambiguous."

Then, [me speaking] from great standards and from the example of many, many vinaya stories, the mandate is compelling: when the rule is not clear, choose the more compassionate interpretation. :heart:
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby manas » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:45 pm

It just occurred to me that the Buddha wanted us all to live in concord, in unity, as much as possible. Furthermore, to cause a schism in the Sangha is one of the 'kammas with immediate result' (in the next world), and a kamma-obstruction (although it could possibly be argued that the kind of schism previously referred to happened long, long ago already...I don't know...) Anyway, I hope that the Theravadan Buddhist community worldwide is able to advance on this issue harmoniously, for everyone's benefit...more effort needs to be put into that, imo.

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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Bankei » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:59 pm

manasikara wrote:
Zom wrote:As for me, I think that bhikkhuni lineage can't be restored simply because of the lack of theravada bhikkhuni preceptor.
All bhikkshuni preceptors are of Mahayana-Dhamma. So then, any theravada bhikkhuni is simpy "mahayana bhikkhuni practising theravada".

Dhamma-Vinaya is one whole thing, they can't be separated. If we separate them, we may legitimately establish an order of monks with christian views )))
'Ordained Mahayana, but practising Theravada'...sounds fine to me. It's what they do after their ordination, and for the rest of their monastic lives, that really counts, after all.

:namaste:


This is a general misunderstanding.

The 'Mahayana practicing Bhikkhuni' are ordained under vinaya of the Mulasarvastivada or Dharmaguptaka nikaya. These are not mahayana nikayas/schools but groups which were pre-mahayana (ie what is termed by some as hinayana). These schools are similar to Theravada, not the same, but closer to Theravada than Mahayana.

Once ordained under vinaya the Mahayanists then take additional ordinations such as the Bodhisattva precepts and they also follow a mahayanic philosophy.

It would be like a monk ordaining in Thailand under Theravada and then going to Japan and practising Zen in a monastery there without disrobing. Is he a Theravadin or a Zen monk?

Thai Buddhists often refer to the Theravada Bhikkhuni as being mahayanist. This just shows how ignorant they are of Buddhism in general and Buddhist history. They would have neither a mahayana ordination nor a Mahayanic belief.

(incidently I know of several western Theravada Bhikkhu who have also taken Bodisattva precepts).

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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Platypus » Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:24 am

This is all very convoluted, or as our Zen friends would say, focusing on the fingers and not the moon. It's probably best in this case to focus on the spirit of the law not the letter of the law. I see no reason why bhikkuni's can't have a bhikkuni ordination to establish the lineage. If the Buddha created it why can't the theravada community recreate it surely they'd care enough to establish it faithfully.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Dan74 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 10:04 am

Zom wrote:As for me, I think that bhikkhuni lineage can't be restored simply because of the lack of theravada bhikkhuni preceptor.
All bhikkshuni preceptors are of Mahayana-Dhamma. So then, any theravada bhikkhuni is simpy "mahayana bhikkhuni practising theravada".

Dhamma-Vinaya is one whole thing, they can't be separated. If we separate them, we may legitimately establish an order of monks with christian views )))


I thought a learned person, such as yourself, Zom, would know that there is no such thing as "Mahayana ordination". What Mahayana monastics have is Dharmagupta Vinaya, which comes from one of the Early Buddhist schools and is believed (just like Theravada) to be an unbroken lineage.

Besides I thought there was plenty of other good reasons to consider Bhikkhuni ordinations valid, starting from the Buddha's permission to change minor rules to his emphasis on the essence ("the raft") rather than the mere form of the teachings.

Whatever helps lead sentient beings to awakening is blessed by the Buddha.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Zom » Thu Nov 03, 2011 10:21 am

I thought a learned person, such as yourself, Zom, would know that there is no such thing as "Mahayana ordination". What Mahayana monastics have is Dharmagupta Vinaya, which comes from one of the Early Buddhist schools and is believed (just like Theravada) to be an unbroken lineage.


I'm going to ask you then - if we establish, using this or that Vinaya, a group of monks who will have such views: "We take Refuge in Triple Gem that is Christian The Holy Trinity". Are you going to consider them as valid monks? Are you going to bring them dana and support them? It seems there is everything alright with their Vinaya lineage ,) Would they be a Sangha? 8-)

And this is the good reason to consider bhikkhuni ordination invalid.
As I said, Dhamma-Vinaya is a whole thing. Long time ago Dharmagupta Vinaya become one and whole with Mahayana views. And such mahayana monks could not hold uposatha with theravadin monks. And theravadin monks won't hold uposatha with such mahayana monks. So, now, you can't just so simply separate Dhamma-Vinaya.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Dan74 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 10:29 am

Zom wrote:
I thought a learned person, such as yourself, Zom, would know that there is no such thing as "Mahayana ordination". What Mahayana monastics have is Dharmagupta Vinaya, which comes from one of the Early Buddhist schools and is believed (just like Theravada) to be an unbroken lineage.


I'm going to ask you then - if we establish, using this or that Vinaya, a group of monks who will have such views: "We take Refuge in Triple Gem that is Christian The Holy Trinity". Are you going to consider them as valid monks? Are you going to bring them dana and support them? It seems there is everything alright with their Vinaya lineage ,) Would they be a Sangha? 8-)

And this is the good reason to consider bhikkhuni ordination invalid.
As I said, Dhamma-Vinaya is a whole thing. Long time ago Dharmagupta Vinaya become one and whole with Mahayana views. And such mahayana monks could not hold uposatha with theravadin monks. And theravadin monks won't hold uposatha with such mahayana monks. So, now, you can't just so simply separate them.


Firstly it is important to distinguish ordination lineage and school. As far as I can tell what preserves the lineage is not some perceived deviation from the Dhamma but that the Vinaya is being upheld.

Secondly I think your sectarian bashing comment is extremely ill-informed and ill-spoken. If you care about Right Speech, I suggest you inform yourself properly before slighting hundreds of generations of venerable teachers of wisdom deeper than you can fathom.
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Re: 1000 Bhikkhunis in the World

Postby Zom » Thu Nov 03, 2011 10:31 am

I see no reason why bhikkuni's can't have a bhikkuni ordination to establish the lineage. If the Buddha created it why can't the theravada community recreate it surely they'd care enough to establish it faithfully.


There is one more good reason not to make any attempts to re-establish bhukkhuni - because this will lead to a schism in Sangha. Actually, I'm afraid, there IS already a schism happened because of this attempt. Now - who is guilty? That one, who made active actions to do it - not that one who resisted it.
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