Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby KonstantKarma » Wed Aug 04, 2010 1:33 pm

Not that I'm an enlightened Buddha or anything :buddha2:

I would say the ideas to kill a rapist are, naturally, very anti-buddhist and the buddhist approach would be to imprison one to keep society safe (and provide him the opportunity for reflection and personal change and growth).

I agree with what Ben said. :anjali:

I am the kind of person who has, and probably in the future will, advocate killing when angry or unmindful.

Doesn't mean it's the correct thought.

:toilet:
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby chownah » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:09 pm

Mawkish1983 wrote:Tell that to the girl.

The above is a response to my post which was, "The Buddha taught that we would do best to have no doctrine of self whatever......from this I take that I should not view the "rapist" as having self or as having no self but rather I should try to see that what happened was due to conditions....the "rapist" was acting from conditioning that goes back for god only knows how long..........I think the Buddha would teach that rape there is but no rapist (or victim) can be found.....
chownah"

My reply is that I would gladly tell the girl......unless she has been brain washed by society into thinking that she has been irrevocably damaged she is probably right now in her school yard playing skip rope or some other such fun childish pastime......she probably will have no lasting malaise.....unless of course society instills (as it almost always does) its fear and loathing into her psyche. A bad thing has happened to her.....bad things happen to alot of people and usually they recover quite nicely. The idea that this little girls will be tortured all her life by what happened to her is mostly just an idea in your head....it is the "self" that you have made up for her.....this deluded "self" is one example of why the Buddha advised us to have no doctrine of self....in my view.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby PeterB » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:27 pm

wow....I dont know where to begin to express my disgust at such callous disregard for another human being..
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:33 pm

PeterB wrote:wow....I dont know where to begin to express my disgust at such callous disregard for another human being..


Me too... I think what Chownah said is nihilism, more or less.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Vepacitta » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:40 pm

"she probably will have no lasting malaise.....unless of course society instills (as it almost always does) its fear and loathing into her psyche. A bad thing has happened to her.....bad things happen to alot of people and usually they recover quite nicely. The idea that this little girls will be tortured all her life by what happened to her is mostly just an idea in your head....it is the "self" that you have made up for her.....this deluded "self" is one example of why the Buddha advised us to have no doctrine of self....in my view.
chownah"


Hey there - There is something to this.

Example: When I was a kid - I was hit by a car and dragged under it. I didn't have too much damage, considering, lots of bruises, needed some stitches here and there and my two front teeth were broken - but that was it - no broken bones, no internal damage - I was out of my hospital bed the next day. I didn't really feel too bad about this. However my parents (esp. my Mother) and other people's attitudes REALLY hurt me. Some made me feel like a cripple (I was up and about - albeit gingerly) the next day; some made me feel like I was "accident prone"; some made me feel like I deserved it (as a great big 7 year old kid - I look at 7 year olds and realise they are not that big) should have been more careful; my brother a few years ago said (dramatically, mind you) that "you were NEVER the same after that!!!!! Never!!!) (Oy vey is mir - what a maroon! :roll: )

At any rate - although this example isn't nearly as awful as what happened to that little girl - I concede this - I think it still may serve to prove Chownah's point. You see - I didn't feel horrible about it the accident at all. What I did feel horrible about was other's projects of their own crap (self) onto it. That tortured me - that angered me - that created loads of ill will - not towards the person in the car who hit me by the way - towards everyone else.

To this day - this still brings up feelings. Ahh, uppadana (clinging/grasping/adhering) - it's a bitch! :x

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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby KonstantKarma » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:42 pm

The good part is, the girl's mind will push it out, the same as ours did when bad things happened at 10 years old. 10 is a very malleable age and the brain's a lot more liquid. Thank god 'cause if not I'd be a lot more screwed up now than I already am!

The bad news is the people surrounding her outside of family will try to keep her rooted in the past, preventing her from living mindfully or day-to-day. Everyone will point and whisper, people will always ask if she's okay, friends will ask her to relive it, and she'll be known as "that girl".
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Vepacitta » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:46 pm

Exactly, Konstant Kamma!

FNA,

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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:47 pm

Vepacitta wrote:Hey there - There is something to this.


I don't think so.

The problem that I see in Chownah's post, was that if he said that there is Anatta (I agree that this is true), then why would Chownah have to make an insensitive post about something that "doesn't exist"?

\Why would he have to make up this image of a girl (that he holds in his head apparently), and then make up a sociopathic post about her? That's just absurd. There is absolutely no practice of compassion or kindness in that. This is an absolutely wrong view of the Anatta... and not only that, it's a slander to the Dhamma.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby PeterB » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:49 pm

On a regular basis I treat people of both sexes who have been sexually abused and who are still suffering decades later. Often they have told no one about the matter in the intervening years.
I think those with no personal or professional experience of the issue should reflect on their opinions before unleasing them onto the world.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby KonstantKarma » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:53 pm

PeterB wrote:On a regular basis I treat people of both sexes who have been sexually abused and who are still suffering decades later. Often they have told no one about the matter in the intervening years.
I think those with no personal or professional experience of the issue should reflect on their opinions before unleasing them onto the world.


I agree, experience is the key. Of course mine is different from the next persons, and so on.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby PeterB » Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:59 pm

If anyone seriously thinks that the Buddhist response to a 10 year old who has been raped is to give them a wee sermon on Anatta and assure them that life is suffering anyway then they have not the slightest dimmest understanding of Buddhadhamma, and frankly I wonder why they are wasting their time.They have not even become a functioning adult human being...which is the base line for practising the Dhamma.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Vepacitta » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:09 pm

Honestly - I certainly wouldn't give anyone (who has undergone whatever traumatic event) a sermon about anything! They don't bloody well want it. They want compassion - which is sometimes to just listen and shut up. I grok that - honestly.

However, others' projections onto us can be damaging - even if they are well intentioned. That was my point - if it was done unskilfully - my apologies - but there is truth to that. I think Konstant Kamma said it quite nicely and perhaps Chowdah (sp?) put it a bit awkwardly.

Let's not accuse folks of slandering the Dhamma here - do any of us truly realise it anyway? I know we aspire to realise it - but - have we (yet)? (I do hold out the hope).

This is a very touchy issue and it's hard to look at with skilfull dhamma. We have to start with the really small things that annoy us and go from there. Ajhan Sumedho speaks nicely to this in his treatise on The Four Noble Truths. You can access this on the web - it's an interesting read.
:anjali:

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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby PeterB » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:23 pm

If you could sit beside me for a day Vepacitta and listen to those who have actually been abused and whose lives have been distorted by that experienced, and I have someone who fits that description referred to me most weeks, every month, and if you could see the life sapping and emotionally crippling effect of that abuse on the victims of it.
.Or if you could listen to the anguished story of someone who has raped his mother as a result of childhood abuse from his father...
Or listen to the sobs of a woman who has smothered her children to death when afflicted by recurring depression and despair as a result of being used by her fathers friends as a sex toy..I think you too might be less inclined to take a detached and philosophical view of these issues and maintain a respectful silence in the face of the victims..
What I am hearing here on this thread is a lot of alienation being mistaken for equanimity.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Vepacitta » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:44 pm

Peter- I actually don't take a detached view of this sort of thing. In fact, it arises the most intense anger in me for the affected person. Did you not see my earlier post wondering whether it might actually be a form kindness to get rid of the perpetrators of this disgusting and awful crime? (But, o no, that's not "Buddhist" - so it can't be discussed here. Funny - I could discuss that in a Buddhist Sutta Class with no one freaking out - but it can't be stated here.

Yes, when something that traumatic happens to someone they ARE crippled - and I certainly wouldn't lecture them on Anatta or any other philosophical or religious ideas. I woud listen to them - just goddam listen to them. I said that already.

All I was attempting to do is demonstrate that sometimes others' projections onto a victim of such crime (or any accident or unfortunate event) can have debilatating effects. Even with the best of intentions, it can make things even worse.

I haven't been on the I-Net for many years - now I remember why - people just jump onto stuff so they can fight.

Ridiculous.

FYFNA,

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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby PeterB » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:48 pm

chownah wrote:
Mawkish1983 wrote:Tell that to the girl.

The above is a response to my post which was, "The Buddha taught that we would do best to have no doctrine of self whatever......from this I take that I should not view the "rapist" as having self or as having no self but rather I should try to see that what happened was due to conditions....the "rapist" was acting from conditioning that goes back for god only knows how long..........I think the Buddha would teach that rape there is but no rapist (or victim) can be found.....
chownah"

My reply is that I would gladly tell the girl......unless she has been brain washed by society into thinking that she has been irrevocably damaged she is probably right now in her school yard playing skip rope or some other such fun childish pastime......she probably will have no lasting malaise.....unless of course society instills (as it almost always does) its fear and loathing into her psyche. A bad thing has happened to her.....bad things happen to alot of people and usually they recover quite nicely. The idea that this little girls will be tortured all her life by what happened to her is mostly just an idea in your head....it is the "self" that you have made up for her.....this deluded "self" is one example of why the Buddha advised us to have no doctrine of self....in my view.
chownah

This is what sparked my intervention...I make no apologies for that intervention. If this is "one example of why the Buddha advised us to have no doctrine of self."..then I am off to join the Salvation Army.
It isnt of course. And the fact that it isnt needs stating clearly.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:32 pm

Peter, I wholeheartedly agree.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Tex » Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:39 pm

chownah wrote:My reply is that I would gladly tell the girl......unless she has been brain washed by society into thinking that she has been irrevocably damaged she is probably right now in her school yard playing skip rope or some other such fun childish pastime......she probably will have no lasting malaise.....unless of course society instills (as it almost always does) its fear and loathing into her psyche. A bad thing has happened to her.....bad things happen to alot of people and usually they recover quite nicely. The idea that this little girls will be tortured all her life by what happened to her is mostly just an idea in your head....


Whether "society instills fear and loathing into her psyche" or not is irrelevant. Yes, in some cultures being a rape victim carries a certain stigma. But in all cultures being the victim of a violent trauma at a young age does have lasting psychological effects. And being violated sexually before you're even old enough to understand sex is just about the most damaging thing that can happen to a young mind.

This incident doesn't necessarily have to ruin this girl's entire life, and hopefully she's getting the love, support, and professional help she needs, but to say that a child rape victim can easily put it behind her is simply incorrect. And that's the Right Speechiest way I can say it.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby PeterB » Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:44 pm

I admire your Right Speechiestness Tex.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby beeblebrox » Thu Aug 05, 2010 11:26 am

Vepacitta wrote:Let's not accuse folks of slandering the Dhamma here - do any of us truly realise it anyway? I know we aspire to realise it - but - have we (yet)? (I do hold out the hope).


You're right, I went a bit overboard with that. I really apologize... to Chownah, and everyone who might be put off by that. It really contributed nothing.

I thought some more about what I replied, and hope that the following will clarify my own understanding about anatta (for anyone who's interested):

You need to be careful about substituting something for a self. Substituting the "conditions" for a self doesn't make it anatta. Calling a delusion something else doesn't make it stop being a delusion.

If you say that the rapist and the girl, their actions, their experiences were all based on conditions, with "no self" involved... does that really make their situation any better? I don't think so. Those conditions were still experienced.

Also, if you talk about the conditions as if they would be better off if they didn't have a "self"... that would be a nihilist viewpoint. This is a wrong grasp of what the Buddha actually taught.

Be well, everyone.
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Re: Buddhist response to a monstrous act of rape?

Postby Ben » Thu Aug 05, 2010 12:36 pm

Mawkish1983 wrote:Peter, I wholeheartedly agree.


Seconded!

Vepacitta wrote:I haven't been on the I-Net for many years - now I remember why - people just jump onto stuff so they can fight.

I apologise if you feel that I targetted you with my earlier post. I could have been more skilful in the way I worded my response.
Dhamma Wheel is a vibrant Theravadin discussion forum which is actively moderated. As such, discussion is robust. Many of our members come here for inspiration, companionship and the sharing of ideas. Sometimes, that takes the form of dynamic discussion. Occassionally, less than ideal behaviour ensues, but I haven't seen evidence of that on this thread.

vepacitta wrote:What I did feel horrible about was other's projects of their own crap (self) onto it. That tortured me - that angered me - that created loads of ill will - not towards the person in the car who hit me by the way - towards everyone else.

I am no psychologist, but I would agree. But at the same time, what Chownah has said as a response to a rape victim discounts it to the point of trivialization. They are the two extremes, FNA.

vepacitta wrote:Hey there - just to clarify - I'm not encouraging anyone to kill anyone (or anything). Sometimes, I just wonder - IS it a kindness to let certain people .. continue on in the world due to the utter misery that they cause.

It's a question - not a definative statement.

There are parallels in history. (Look at any Dictator - Hitler- Stalin - Mao - Amin and think about the various points when those regimes could have been nipped in the bud but and esp. in re: Hitler - look what damage "keeping the peace" did ) but I find I am getting

At any rate - it is a question - what harm is done by letting the evil (for lack of better word) live? Something I ponder - but don't encourage.

This is what I was getting at earlier. If it is an intentional act to kill another human being, irregardless of what that person has done or what you can only suspect that she/he will do, no good will come from it. If the situation is that you are defending yourself and/or others and you kill the person in the process of neutralizing their threat, then its not so bad. Foreknowledge of the future, whereby you could see when a child is born that they would grow into a murderous tyrant, is limited to Buddhas (and perhaps chief disciples),according to the Canon. If you were in a position to assassinate a tyrant such as Hitler,Amin or Pol Pot and know that by doing so you would save millions of lives,then I think the kamma may be mixed and it will depend on the intention of the killer and the intention of those who have supported the killer and those who have given praise to the killing. Its imponderable. Fortunately, for most of us its a moral dilemma that will remain purely academic.
kind regards

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