Metta and Predation

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Metta and Predation

Postby MayaRefugee » Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:43 pm

Greetings Everyone,

Hoping to hear some thoughts on these propositions and get a dialogue happening.

Does one or can one cultivate enough Metta that your body/being need not fear/worry about predators?

How can you eradicate duality when experience teaches you that there are threats to your bodies perpetuation i.e. tigers, lions, sharks, snakes, etc.?

If a predator decides you're what it wants do you be unselfish and willingly let predators have their way with you?

Peace,

Maya
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby chownah » Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:08 pm

I don't worry about predators....I thought that most adults were similarly not concerned about predators....probably not all though.....if there is danger then take precautions I guess but really what are the chances.

I wouldn't let a predataor eat me.....why would I?.....I don't think that there is anything even remotely implied in the Buddha's teachings that suggest it is wrong to protect yourself from a predator....or that you should not do so.

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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby MayaRefugee » Thu Oct 07, 2010 3:20 pm

What about the sutra about the guy that let the other guy dismember him - that's predatory behaviour is it not?

Here something is being won (easement/satisfaction/intoxication for the predators mind/sense of self) and something is being lost (the volitional capacity/life/namarupa of the Buddhist).
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby cooran » Thu Oct 07, 2010 4:15 pm

Hello MayaRefugee,

I'm not aware of any such sutta. Can you please give a traceable link to it?

with metta
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby Hanzze » Thu Oct 07, 2010 4:29 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby Sobeh » Thu Oct 07, 2010 4:40 pm

cooran wrote:Hello MayaRefugee,

I'm not aware of any such sutta. Can you please give a traceable link to it?

with metta
Chris


I remember such a tale with these details: a king was demanding a monk to show his enlightenment or he'd cut off a hand or head or such, so when the monk said nothing the hand was cut off. The monk said something about enlightenment not being in his hand, so the other hand, feet, legs, and arms were all handled the same way (with the phrase "enlightenment is not in my <body part>" also following appropriately) until of course the monk died. Apparently this is when the evil king himself attained a realization, on account of the powerful monk.

I'm almost certain it's Mahayana.
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby Goofaholix » Thu Oct 07, 2010 6:31 pm

I don't know about yours but in my town humans are the top of the food chain, so no predators to worry about.
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby Hanzze » Thu Oct 07, 2010 6:38 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby cooran » Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:38 pm

MayaRefugee wrote:What about the sutra about the guy that let the other guy dismember him - that's predatory behaviour is it not?

Here something is being won (easement/satisfaction/intoxication for the predators mind/sense of self) and something is being lost (the volitional capacity/life/namarupa of the Buddhist).


Hello MayaRefugee,

In the Vissudhimagga ‘The Path of Purification’ IX, 40 [The Breaking Down of the Barriers- The Sign] pp 332-333, there are meditation instructions for learning how to be impartial towards all persons including oneself i.e. breaking down the barriers.

‘Suppose this person is sitting in a place with a dear, a neutral, and a hostile person, himself being the fourth; then bandits come to him and say ‘Venerable sir, give us a bhikkhu, and on being asked why, they answer ‘So that we may kill him and use the blood of his throat as an offering’, then if that bhikkhu thinks ‘Let them take this one, or this one’, he has not broken down the barriers. And also if he thinks ‘Let them take me but not these three’, he has not broken down the barriers either. Why? Because he seeks the harm of him whom he wishes to be taken and seeks the welfare of the others only. But it is when he does not see a single one among the four people to be given to the bandits and he directs his mind impartially towards himself and towards those three people that he has broken down the barriers.’

With metta
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby Anicca » Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:46 pm

MayaRefugee wrote:What about the sutra about the guy that let the other guy dismember him

cooran wrote:I'm not aware of any such sutta. Can you please give a traceable link to it?


There may be others:
From MN 21 Kakacupama Sutta: The Parable of the Saw (excerpt)
"Phagguna, if anyone were to give you a blow with the hand, or hit you with a clod of earth, or with a stick, or with a sword, even then you should abandon those urges and thoughts which are worldly. There, Phagguna, you should train yourself thus: 'Neither shall my mind be affected by this, nor shall I give vent to evil words; but I shall remain full of concern and pity, with a mind of love, and I shall not give in to hatred.' This is how, Phagguna, you should train yourself.

"Monks, even if bandits were to savagely sever you, limb by limb, with a double-handled saw, even then, whoever of you harbors ill will at heart would not be upholding my Teaching. Monks, even in such a situation you should train yourselves thus: 'Neither shall our minds be affected by this, nor for this matter shall we give vent to evil words, but we shall remain full of concern and pity, with a mind of love, and we shall not give in to hatred. On the contrary, we shall live projecting thoughts of universal love to those very persons, making them as well as the whole world the object of our thoughts of universal love — thoughts that have grown great, exalted and measureless. We shall dwell radiating these thoughts which are void of hostility and ill will.' It is in this way, monks, that you should train yourselves.

"Monks, if you should keep this instruction on the Parable of the Saw constantly in mind, do you see any mode of speech, subtle or gross, that you could not endure?"


From MN 28 Maha-hatthipadopama Sutta: The Great Elephant Footprint Simile:
"And if other people attack the monk in ways that are undesirable, displeasing, & disagreeable — through contact with fists, contact with stones, contact with sticks, or contact with knives — the monk discerns that 'This body is of such a nature that contacts with fists come, contacts with stones come, contacts with sticks come, & contacts with knives come. Now the Blessed One has said, in his exhortation of the simile of the saw, "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." So my persistence will be aroused & untiring, my mindfulness established & unconfused, my body calm & unaroused, my mind centered & unified. And now let contact with fists come to this body, let contact with stones, with sticks, with knives come to this body, for this is how the Buddha's bidding is done.'

"And if, in the monk recollecting the Buddha, Dhamma, & Sangha in this way, equanimity based on what is skillful is not established, he feels apprehensive at that and gives rise to a sense of urgency: 'It is a loss for me, not a gain; ill-gotten for me, not well-gotten, that when I recollect the Buddha, Dhamma, & Sangha in this way, equanimity based on what is skillful is not established within me.'


"And if other people attack the monk in ways that are undesirable, displeasing, & disagreeable — through contact with fists, contact with stones, contact with sticks, or contact with knives — the monk discerns that 'This body is of such a nature that contacts with fists come, contacts with stones come, contacts with sticks come, & contacts with knives come. Now the Blessed One has said, in his exhortation of the simile of the saw, "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." So my persistence will be aroused & untiring, my mindfulness established & unconfused, my body calm & unaroused, my mind centered & unified. And now let contact with fists come to this body, let contact with stones, with sticks, with knives come to this body, for this is how the Buddha's bidding is done.'



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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby lojong1 » Thu Oct 07, 2010 11:57 pm

Sobeh wrote:I remember such a tale with these details: a king was demanding a monk to show his enlightenment or he'd cut off a hand or head or such, so when the monk said nothing the hand was cut off. The monk said something about enlightenment not being in his hand, so the other hand, feet, legs, and arms were all handled the same way (with the phrase "enlightenment is not in my <body part>" also following appropriately) until of course the monk died. Apparently this is when the evil king himself attained a realization, on account of the powerful monk.
I'm almost certain it's Mahayana.

This one was about patience, not metta. "Patience Teacher Birth Story (Khantivādī Jātaka: J 313), a jealous king repeatedly asked an ascetic what the ascetic taught, to which the ascetic replied, "Patience," which the ascetic further defined as "not to get angry when injured, criticized or struck." To test the ascetic's patience, the king had the ascetic struck two thousand times with a whip of thorns, had the ascetic's hands and feet axed off, cut off the ascetic's nose and ears, and then kicked the ascetic in the heart. After the king left, the ascetic wished the king a long life and said, "Those like myself do not feel wrath." The ascetic died later that day." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kshanti
I think it has a Theravada twin.
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby MayaRefugee » Fri Oct 08, 2010 12:11 am

Thanks for your contributions guys.

Equanimity based on skillfullness; I like this.

Looks like I need to look into my idea/understanding of skillful, I don't know if I'm prepared to die/sacrifice my body in the name of the Dhamma if a situation arises that self-defense/counterattack would negate just yet - :thinking:

Here's another question:

In my original proposition I've used the word predator, this predator to me would be buddha nature being distorted by basic instincts/unwholesome desire, for one wanting to get rid of distinctions and permanently recognise everythings sameness/buddha nature how do yo do away with distinctions that allow you to be skillful/perform skillful actions or avoid and negate unwholesomeness - even though you might not get excited or frightened or whatever by the potential of predators/bandits aren't you still categorizing/differentiating them based on some quality/probability inherent to them i.e. unwholesome, wrong, idle, dangerous, greedy, etc?

Another way to ask this would be what seperates or allows you to distuinguish say a bikkhu from a shark?
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby ground » Fri Oct 08, 2010 1:08 am

MayaRefugee wrote:... I don't know if I'm prepared to die/sacrifice my body in the name of the Dhamma if a situation arises that self-defense/counterattack would negate just yet - :thinking:

If even there is no self there will be cherishing of others then that will be the point where such doubts resolve. If one would start from the point of the goal then there would be no doubt.

MayaRefugee wrote:Here's another question:

In my original proposition I've used the word predator, this predator to me would be buddha nature being distorted by basic instincts/unwholesome desire, for one wanting to get rid of distinctions and permanently recognise everythings sameness/buddha nature how do yo do away with distinctions that allow you to be skillful/perform skillful actions or avoid and negate unwholesomeness - even though you might not get excited or frightened or whatever by the potential of predators/bandits aren't you still categorizing/differentiating them based on some quality/probability inherent to them i.e. unwholesome, wrong, idle, dangerous, greedy, etc?

Another way to ask this would be what seperates or allows you to distuinguish say a bikkhu from a shark?

Wisdom has several aspects, discerning wisdom is one of them. It is not the goal to get rid of distinctions.

Kind regards
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby MayaRefugee » Fri Oct 08, 2010 3:39 am

TMingyur, if you cherish others you should still be wary of their cankers/wrong views/etc shouldn't you? - volatility/unpredictabilty is of concern to me, how can you find peace in a room/climate full of time bombs or in the lions den?

If you have no self but others are operating under the assumption they have a self and this self they have wants to objectify you and use you to satisfy some ends what do you do?

If others are playing by rules you don't agree with/like to play by and the repercussions of them playing by different rules could bring about your bodily extinction do you just cop it sweet? - Do you pull them up and sit them down and tell them your rules are better than theirs ans we should both play by them?

Is it neccessary to partition your life into worldly and spiritual affairs and your wisdom into worldly and spiritual wisdom?

Does anyone see anything in my words that reveals something in me that I am not seeing?
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby cooran » Fri Oct 08, 2010 7:39 am

Hello all,

Here is a thread on DhammaStudyGroup which is about the Canonicity of the Jatakas ¬ and shows that while the Jataka Verses are Canonical, the Jataka Tales are not Canonical.

Among those involved in the discussion from 1999 on Buddha-L and 2003 on DSG are Lance Cousins, Jim Anderson, Richard Hayes.

Canonicity of the Jatakas
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/dhammastu ... sage/23011

with metta
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby ground » Fri Oct 08, 2010 8:31 am

MayaRefugee wrote:TMingyur, if you cherish others you should still be wary of their cankers/wrong views/etc shouldn't you? - volatility/unpredictabilty is of concern to me, how can you find peace in a room/climate full of time bombs or in the lions den?

1st and 2nd noble truths.

MayaRefugee wrote:If you have no self but others are operating under the assumption they have a self and this self they have wants to objectify you and use you to satisfy some ends what do you do?

Since I have not yet abandned afflictive obscurations it makes no sense for me to speculate about scenarios which are born from thoughts permeated by afflictive obscurations. The teachings however teach to train in compassion and wisdom (only to mention two important aspects).

MayaRefugee wrote:If others are playing by rules you don't agree with/like to play by and the repercussions of them playing by different rules could bring about your bodily extinction do you just cop it sweet? - Do you pull them up and sit them down and tell them your rules are better than theirs ans we should both play by them?

These are all thoughts born from perception of "self" and "others".

MayaRefugee wrote:Is it neccessary to partition your life into worldly and spiritual affairs and your wisdom into worldly and spiritual wisdom?

It is just necessary to practice.

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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby 5heaps » Fri Oct 08, 2010 8:54 am

MayaRefugee wrote:how can you find peace in a room/climate full of time bombs or in the lions den?

because death is clearly understood, since the mind is clearly understood, as are persons

fear, anxiety, pride, etc only happen when persons are not understood. experiencing anything other than peace and lucidity in the most difficult of situations serves no practical purpose.
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby MayaRefugee » Fri Oct 08, 2010 10:36 am

If the Buddha reached enlightenment in woods also inhabited by lions and other meat eaters would he acknowledge the risk and react to it or would the lions and other meat eaters have taken him off their menu cause he reached nibbana? - assume their was no compound/fenced off area for the Buddha to retreat in to.

It just seems to me like physical threats/suffering and mental torment are two kettles of fish requiring two types of action to put an end to it - even if you don't care about dying wouldn't you still prefer to live? - don't the Shaolin monks have a rule where it's ok to defend but never attack, why would you make it easy for a lion to eat your body and end your stint here?
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Re: Metta and Predation

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Oct 08, 2010 8:10 pm

See MN 4 Bhaya-bherava Sutta: Fear & Terror
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"Yes, brahman, so it is. It's not easy to endure isolated forest or wilderness dwellings. It's not easy to maintain seclusion, not easy to enjoy being alone. The forests, as it were, plunder the mind of a monk who has not attained concentration. Before my Awakening, when I was still an unawakened Bodhisatta, the thought occurred to me as well: 'It's not easy to maintain seclusion, not easy to enjoy being alone. The forests, as it were, plunder the mind of a monk who has not attained concentration.'

"The thought occurred to me: 'When priests or contemplatives who are unpurified in their bodily activities resort to isolated forest or wilderness dwellings, it's the fault of their unpurified bodily activities that they give rise to unskillful fear & terror. But it's not the case that I am unpurified in my bodily activities when I resort to isolated forest or wilderness dwellings. I am purified in my bodily activities. I am one of those noble ones who are purified in their bodily activities when they resort to isolated forest or wilderness dwellings.' Seeing in myself this purity of bodily activities, I felt even more undaunted about staying in the wilderness.

:anjali:
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