Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

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gendun
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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby gendun » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:24 pm

I hardly think that the struggle that women have mounted to be seen as autominous functioning citizens in their own right, able to choose their own roles and life styles and vocations, amounts to " conventions "..
What are the growing numbers of Gay and Lesbian Buddhists to make of these injunctions ?
I'll tell you what they make of them..they join a Mahayana Sangha is what.
If this really represents the position that the Theravada is seriously proposing to import into the west then it is doomed to remain a small self enclosed cult. Like the Shakers or Mennonites.
Maybe thats OK with you.
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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Coyote » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:37 pm

gendun wrote:I hardly think that the struggle that women have mounted to be seen as autominous functioning citizens in their own right, able to choose their own roles and life styles and vocations, amounts to " conventions "..
If this really represents the position that the Theravada is seriously proposing to import into the west then it is doomed to remain a small self enclosed cult. Like the Shakers or Mennonites
Maybe thats OK with you.


I don't think I have said that those things mentioned by you should be discarded. Merely that when social conventions and dhammic advice come into conflict it would be best to choose the Dhamma as presented in the Suttas, not our own ideals, or those of our culture. It is always a choice, nothing forced. As for the second comment: I think it is important that practices and teachings don't change just to pander to the sensitivities of some converts. If that means Theravada representation is small, then that is none of my concern. Whether this is one of those things, I am not sure. I'm not sure I feel confident enough to comment further.

:anjali:
Last edited by Coyote on Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:39 pm

If you want to practice the Dhamma as taught by the Lord Buddha you are free to do so. If you choose to practice your own beliefs you are free to do so. Just be clear about what you're doing.
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby gendun » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:42 pm

So is that what you would say to a gay or lesbian Buddhist who was asking about this specific issue
Khalil Bodhi ?
Khalil Bodhi wrote:If you want to practice the Dhamma as taught by the Lord Buddha you are free to do so. If you choose to practice your own beliefs you are free to do so. Just be clear about what you're doing.
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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:47 pm

This is what I would say Gendun:

If you want to practice the Dhamma as taught by the Lord Buddha you are free to do so. If you choose to practice your own beliefs you are free to do so. Just be clear about what you're doing.
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby gendun » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:53 pm

But the socio/political position of gay and lesbian Buddhists..or single parent Buddhists, or Buddhists married to non Buddhists are not covered by the Buddha's injunctions Khalil Bodhi.
So in regard to these specifics social mores in relationship terms.... neither conventional interpretations of Dhamma nor subjective ideas are of use.
These lifestyle variations are evolving as we speak.there is no precedent.
Last edited by gendun on Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:56 pm

Now you're talking about something completely different. My statement was in relation to the OP. When considering things which were not proscribed or described by the Buddha I always find it useful to refer to the 4 Great Standardss: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/ariyesako/layguide.html
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby yawares » Tue Feb 05, 2013 4:01 am

Khalil Bodhi wrote:This is what I would say Gendun:

If you want to practice the Dhamma as taught by the Lord Buddha you are free to do so. If you choose to practice your own beliefs you are free to do so. Just be clear about what you're doing.


Dear Khalil Bodhi,

yawares :anjali:

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby shaunc » Tue Feb 05, 2013 4:44 am

gendun wrote:But the socio/political position of gay and lesbian Buddhists..or single parent Buddhists, or Buddhists married to non Buddhists are not covered by the Buddha's injunctions Khalil Bodhi.
So in regard to these specifics social mores in relationship terms.... neither conventional interpretations of Dhamma nor subjective ideas are of use.
These lifestyle variations are evolving as we speak.there is no precedent.


Hi Gendun. I'm married to a non-buddhist (practising catholic) & have 4 kids, we both work hard & do our best with life in general. I'd like to let you know that my wife would be considered by the buddhist advice in Yawares story as a very good wife without being mine, the kids, her bosses or anyone elses sub-servient hand-maid. The buddha handed out all sorts of advice to all types of people. This advice was handed down to a married woman (wife). Some advice was handed down to husbands, businessmen, military men, monks etc. Most of it is pretty good advice but if you're not the type of person it was intended for don't take it too much to heart. :)

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby shaunc » Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:18 am

yawares wrote:Dear Members,

Image

Buddha's advice/dhamma truly work for my family, my husband/daughter love me so very much. We love/trust each other. We have happy family-life. That's why we so love the Buddhas/Dhamma :heart:

Husband and Wife
[www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/dhammananda/marriage]


According to Buddhist teaching, in a marriage, the husband can expect the following qualities from his wife:
— love
— attentiveness
— family obligations
— faithfulness
— child-care
— thrift
— the provision of meals
— to calm him down when he is upset
— sweetness in everything

In return, the wife's expectation from husband is:
— tenderness
— courtesy
— sociability
— security
— fairness
— loyalty
— honesty
— good companionship
— moral support

Apart from these emotional and sensual aspects, the couple will have to take care of day-to-day living conditions, family budget and social obligations. Thus, mutual consultations between the husband and wife on all family problems would help to create an atmosphere of trust and understanding in resolving whatever issues that may arise.

The Husband

The Buddha, in reply to a householder as to how a husband should minister to his wife declared that the husband should always honor and respect his wife, by being faithful to her, by giving her the requisite authority to manage domestic affairs and by giving her befitting ornaments. This advice, given over twenty five centuries ago, still stands good for today.

Knowing the psychology of the man who tends to consider himself superior, the Buddha made a remarkable change and uplifted the status of a woman by a simple suggestion that a husband should honor and respect his wife. A husband should be faithful to his wife, which means that a husband should fulfill and maintain his marital obligations to his wife thus sustaining the confidence in the marital relationship in every sense of the word. The husband, being a bread-winner, would invariably stay away from home, hence he should entrust the domestic or household duties to the wife who should be considered as the keeper and the distributor of the property and the home economic-administrator. The provision of befitting ornaments to the wife should be symbolic of the husband's love, care and attention showered on the wife. This symbolic practice has been carried out from time immemorial in Buddhist communities.

************
Image

:heart: Love Buddha's dhamma :heart:
yawares/tep/sirikanya :anjali:


Thank-you Yawares. You have said much better what I was trying to say. There are 2 people involved in a marriage. Both partners have certain rights & expectations, which of course means that they also have certain responsobilities.

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Sokehi » Tue Feb 05, 2013 8:44 am

gendun wrote:Even if we view it as a way to somehow improve samsara :? how do fixed gender roles enforced by threat of hell for naughty women aid that ?
Please tell me that the Theravada view of social roles is not in a state of arrested development circa 1960. :( " Sweetness in all things " yuk yuk yuk.
A hundred years of feminism is not about to be set aside in order to incorporate the conventions of an obsolete culture.
Do none of you actually know any western women ?


It's not a "theravada view" dear kagyu student.

It's a stanza from the pali canon, a source every other buddhist tradition is based upon. And I'm sure you've read my posting above suggesting (in the spirit of the kalama sutta) to not blindly believe - what you thankfully don't do - but to practice for yourself. That is a perfect theravadin view, no blind believe, investigation by oneself. So if you'd like to transform this here into a "theravada is sexist" debate I hope you will look deeper into it.
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What does womanhood matter at all, when the mind is concentrated well, when knowledge flows on steadily as one sees correctly into Dhamma. One to whom it might occur, ‘I am a woman’ or ‘I am a man’ or ‘I’m anything at all’ is fit for Mara to address. – SN 5.2

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby gendun » Tue Feb 05, 2013 8:57 am

I have no such intention. The Theravada is as it is.
When I first joined this forum I made my reasons clear.
I was one of a number of students of my teacher to whom it was suggested that we attend a 10 day Vipassana retreat. Having done so I realised that in fact I knew little of the Theravada, so I joined this forum to redress that balance.

I wish you all well and thank you for the instruction . I now know a lot more about the Theravada.
And I think I have had a tiny glimpse of the Theravada mind set.


:anjali: :anjali: :anjali:
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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby yawares » Tue Feb 05, 2013 1:31 pm

Dear Shaunc,

Image

I truly appreciate your kind words...and a song for you/your wife:

One Good Woman : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ok2Jyjtm698

yawares :anjali: :thanks:

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby pegembara » Tue Feb 05, 2013 2:16 pm

Sorry for hijacking this thread but I just couldn't resist posting this story. :sage:

4 WIVES

Once upon a time there was a rich King who had four wives. (What's new? MEN!!)

He loved the 4th wife the most, as she was Beautiful, and adored
her with rich robes, perfumes and treated her to the finest of
delicacies. He gave her nothing but the best.

He also loved the 3rd wife very much and was always showing her off to neighboring kingdoms. However, he feared that one day she would leave him for another.

He also loved his 2nd wife. She was his confidant and was always
kind, considerate and patient with him. Whenever the King faced a problem, which is ever so often, he could confide in her, and she would help him get through the difficult times.

The King's 1st wife was a very loyal partner and had made great
contributions in maintaining his wealth and kingdom. However, he did not love the first wife. Although she loved him deeply,
he hardly took notice of her!

One day, the King fell ill and he knew his time was short. He thought of his luxurious life and wondered, I now have four wives with me,
but when I die, I'll be all alone."

Thus, he asked the 4th wife , "I loved you the most, endowed you with the finest clothing and showered great care over you. Now that I'm
dying, will you follow me and keep me company?"

"No way!", replied the 4th wife, and she walked away without another word.

Her answer cut like a sharp knife right into his heart.

The sad King then asked the 3rd wife, "I loved you all my life. Now that I'm dying, will you follow me and keep me company?"

"No!", replied the 3rd wife. "Life is too good! When you die,
I'm going to remarry!"
His heart sank and turned cold.

He then asked the 2nd wife, "I have always turned to you for help and you've always been there for me.

When I die, will you follow me and keep me company?"

"I'm sorry, I can't help you out this time!", replied the 2nd wife.
"At the very most, I can only walk with you to your grave."
Her answer struck him like a bolt of lightning, and the King
was devastated.

Then a voice called out: "I'll go with you. I'll follow you no
matter where you go."

The King looked up, and there was his first wife. She looked hagged, old and neglected (as most first wives do lah!). Greatly
grieved, fearful and finally repentent (much too late lor!), the King said, "I should have taken much better care of
you when I had the chance!"

In truth, we all have the 4 wives in our lives:

Our 4th wife is our body. No matter how much time and effort we lavish in making it look beautiful, it will leave us when we die.

Our 3rd wife is our possessions, status and wealth. When we die, it will all go to others.

Our 2nd wife is our family and friends. No matter how much they have been there for us, the furthest they can stay by us is up to the grave.

And our 1st wife is our Kamma. Often neglected in pursuit of wealth,
power and pleasures of the world. However, our Kamma
is the only thing that will follow us wherever we go.

Take good care of Kamma now, for it is the only thing that will follow us and continue with us throughout samsara. It is our inheritance, our constant companion and the force which makes us BECOME beings over and over again.
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby yawares » Wed Feb 06, 2013 2:14 pm

Dear Pegembara,

Image

I truly..truly love your '4 Wives' story that I copied/posted at my SD/JTN Dhamma groups(and I do hope that you don't mind)...Thank you very much :anjali:

Love the story! :heart:
yawares

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby pegembara » Thu Feb 07, 2013 4:34 am

:anjali:
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Maitri » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:17 pm

Personally, I think that taking one passage the Buddha taught to someone as representative of the entire Buddhist canon is a bit overzealous. There are portions in other suttas (and in Mahayana Sutras that are far more "troubling" than this) when it comes to sexism. Sex discrimination is there, but this isn't it. I take this passage as the Buddha simply stating that there is no free pass on how we treat others. If you treat a stranger or a loved one poorly, negative results will follow.

The Buddha also said the following in the Sigalovada Sutta:

"In five ways, young householder, should a wife as the West be ministered to by a husband:
(i) by being courteous to her, (ii) by not despising her, (iii) by being faithful to her, (iv) by handing over authority to her, (v) by providing her with adornments.

"The wife thus ministered to as the West by her husband shows her compassion to her husband in five ways:
(i) she performs her duties well, (ii) she is hospitable to relations and attendants[10] (iii) she is faithful, (iv) she protects what he brings, (v) she is skilled and industrious in discharging her duties.

"In these five ways does the wife show her compassion to her husband who ministers to her as the West. Thus is the West covered by him and made safe and secure.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nara.html

Notice that the Buddha provides a balance of how husband and wives treat one another. Is this limiting women to the home life- yes of course! We are talking about 2,500 years ago a long time before the Industrial Revolution changed the way both men and women work in and out of the home. Is it such a shock to see that the Buddha taught about all sectors of life- including on morality and how we behave with each other? Personally, I enjoy seeing the Lord Buddha's advice on how to live life. As a female, I do all the typical modern "liberated" stuff women do and still abide by gender roles.It doesn't have to be one or the other.

Adapting these teachings to the modern world isn't about dispatching them entirely, but seeing their purposes and usefulness in context. I don't live in a country where I can offer food to monastics everyday on their alms round, so I have to be inventive in how I share my dana with a Dhamma center. I don't just throw out the guidelines because the culture makes it difficult, but I try to find a way to practice that is in my best keeping with the Dhamma.

Maybe it's just me, but it is confusing to see people astounded by Buddhist morality, guidelines and precepts. :thinking:
May all beings be well, happy, calm, and at ease.

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Re: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives

Postby Maitri » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:19 pm

Khalil Bodhi wrote:If you want to practice the Dhamma as taught by the Lord Buddha you are free to do so. If you choose to practice your own beliefs you are free to do so. Just be clear about what you're doing.



Sadhu, Sadhu, Sadhu! :buddha1:
May all beings be well, happy, calm, and at ease.


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