General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
Venerables and friends,
I've been reading the Venerable Pa-Auk Sayadaw's guide "Knowing and Seeing", and noticed in the chapter on practicing mettā bhāvanā that the Sayadaw stresses the importance of beginning the practice in relation to someone of the same gender, as doing it towards someone of the opposite gender may cause lust to arise. I can see of course how this advice would apply to the heterosexual meditator, but wonder whether anyone has come across the Sayadaw's advice to homosexual meditators on this topic. Common sense would dictate that one should meditate with people of the opposite gender in mind in this case, but I am curious about anyone's experience with this issue directly with the Sayadaw.
Any sharing would be much appreciated!
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I suppose homosexual people extending metta to people of the opposite sex to avoid the arising of lust does make sense; what then about bisexual people? Maybe it should just be 'someone to whom there is no sexual attraction.'
If the intention is to avoid the arising of lust, I think that general rule makes a lot of sense.
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I think all gay men have male figures in their lives that they aren't attracted to. I'm sure that choosing a female for metta cultivation wouldn't be a bad idea, but they could also choose a male relative or close friend. I've used a close female friend of mine in metta bhavana often and it's never been a problem, as there is no attraction between us.
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.
Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.
His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti SuttaStuff I write about things.
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LonesomeYogurt wrote:I think all gay men have male figures in their lives that they aren't attracted to.
Same can be said for heterosexual men and women and bisexual men with both.
Suffering is asking from life what it can never give you.
mindfulness, bliss and beyond (page 8) wrote:Do not linger on the past. Do not keep carrying around coffins full of dead moments
If you see any unskillful speech (or other action) from me let me know, so I can learn from it.
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Chapter IX of the Visuddhimagga begins with an exposition of the development of Metta practice. You might find that reading it gives some perspective to historical and cultural influences at play... i.e. that this is not a personal view that the Sayadaw "stresses", but actually in accordance with the commentary.
The first couple of pages of the chapter are about this subject; and are interesting reading.
A pdf version can be downloaded here: http://bit.ly/PBAWsn
The intent seems to be to avoid the 'near enemy' of loving-kindness' which is lust. So, using whatever wisdom one has going, there is probably a work-around. Trial and error?
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