Should sex be demonized so much?

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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Dan74 » Mon Sep 17, 2012 2:36 am

Hanzze wrote:
Dan74 wrote:The skillful way, as I see it, does not deal in absolutes, but in the right approach to every situation, to every individual, including ourselves.


If someone does expect something of cause, very needed. Maybe the problem is "skillful in regard of what?" I guess that is why the precepts have been given very simple and just to keep, one after the other, step by step.
We do not understand skillful, wholesome, "good" as long as we are not aware of the base, the roots of unskinfull acts. We are not easy aware of our attentions at all having not eager worked on being mindful in observing just what was taught to be skillful..


You have posted a lot on this subject which suggests to me that this issue resonates with you very strongly. Perhaps we can step back and examine our involvement and our assumptions here rather than projecting or guessing what others are or are not aware of?
_/|\_
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Mon Sep 17, 2012 2:50 am

If I would say that there is no more doubt that sex is unskillfull even it is done "skillful", would that be enough in regard to your question Dan? Would that support you to gain conviction?
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Dan74 » Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:29 am

Conviction in what?

I have no doubt that attachment to sex is unskillful and that generally sex proceeds from attachment. I also have no doubt than I am still attached to sex and that this attachment is unskillful. But I feel that rejecting sex is far from being the top priority of my practice and would be artificial and counter-productive. Rather learning to be skillful - to be attentive to my partner, gentle and thoughtful, in tune with sensuality while exercising self-restraint seem to be more appropriate for my situation and I suspect to most married householders.

What I doubt is that blanket statements like "sex is unskillful" are useful for people in their practice. I very much doubt that for most people these statements truly address where they are in their practice but instead are more likely fan the flames of aversion and foment inner conflict as attested to by the OP and his subsequent comments.
_/|\_
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:48 am

But I feel that rejecting sex is far from being the top priority of my practice and would be artificial and counter-productive.
So what is this doubt made of?

and counter-productive

Speculation?

What I doubt is that blanket statements like "sex is unskillful" are useful for people in their practice.
Not if skillful is understood, but yes if skillfull is misunderstood.

It even needs skill to seperate skillful from good, and unskillful from what is called bad, so there is always reflexion needed to learn.

We should not forget that practicing virtue has the use to overcome the raw ditthi (believe in an I) but if we use the practice to make that "I" be good or to be a good one, that preassure of course can cause many problems (because it is not really possible).

How ever, an avoiding of contact is very useful if one is not that strong and of coures an overcoming of such an disire while being permanent in contact with dangers might be a sign of great power. As long as we do not ceat ourself. We can always give it a prove and we will only addopt things if there is strong conviction or knowing by one self. The secound would not come without the first.
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Dan74 » Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:58 am

Thanks, Hanzze. The Buddha has already said it well.

But what do you have to contribute to this conversation?
_/|\_
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:09 am

Good question, we might also find it out for our self.

Maybe this:
Ayya Khema once pointed out that sexuall activity is much connected with the defilement of restlessness, maybe I remember were I saw it. How ever it is a good point to think about it anyway.
While I have seen for expamlpe some tibeten teacher who tell people that it is ok to have sex to calm restlessness, sensuallity can not be overcome by stilling it. But yes, we might solve the actual problem as it seems to us.
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Mr Man » Mon Sep 17, 2012 7:16 am

Alex123 wrote:

The more one is busy with a partner, the less time one has to read and contemplate Dhamma.

The dhamma is sanditthiko, Now is always the time to contemplate Dhamma

Why did Gotama left the palace, his riches, wife and newborn son?


That is an archetype. We all have to live the real.
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Tue Sep 18, 2012 1:30 am

Mr Man wrote:We all have to live the real.

What do you mean by live the real? Is there a must? What do we have to do and why?
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Alex123 » Tue Sep 18, 2012 2:33 am

Mr Man wrote:That is an archetype. We all have to live the real.



What do you believe that this palace story is supposed to teach us? That we can live at our rich homes and pursue the Dhamma as well as an ascetic Bhikkhu?
I was not; I was; I am not; I do not care."
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Dan74 » Tue Sep 18, 2012 3:26 am

I find it a bit odd if you mean that this story teaches that sex is bad or that we should leave our families.

Even Gotama after lifetimes of cultivation was married and had a child first before renouncing the life of a householder. Not to mention the fact that he was to become the Buddha, turning the Wheel of the Dhamma, which is a very different story from a noble disciple.

A layperson can go a very long way in practice if not the whole way.
_/|\_
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Tue Sep 18, 2012 3:57 am

A layperson can go a very long way in practice if not the whole way.

Of course if he/she developes "the non-doing of any evil, the performance of what's skillful, the cleansing of her/his own mind.

I don't think that Alex meant that everybody has to imitate his live what does not mean that it could be look like an imitation. "Individual" Kamma is never equal.
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Dan74 » Tue Sep 18, 2012 4:17 am

Hanzze wrote:
A layperson can go a very long way in practice if not the whole way.

Of course if he/she developes "the non-doing of any evil, the performance of what's skillful, the cleansing of her/his own mind.



Yay! :twothumbsup:

I've always like this story from Ajahn Chah:

In 1979 in Barre, Massachusetts, during a question-and-answer session while on retreat, someone asked Ajahn Chah, "Is it necessarily a barrier to be in a sexual relationship? Can one not view sex in terms of it being the dance of the sacred marriage? Couldn't it be noble and mystical?" After Ajahn Chah had the question translated, he pondered for a moment and then started picking his nose in a very graphic and extended way. When everyone was rolling on the floor laughing and he was sure they definitely got the point, he pulled his finger out of his nose: "There's nothing more to it than that, except what the mind adds to it." Perhaps this story has been altered a bit in the telling, but it's still a good story.


and there is also this great story from his early days as a monk:

When people met Ajahn Chah, they often asked how he came to embody such all encompassing wisdom. They wondered if it may have arisen through extensive study of the scriptures. Ajahn Chah responded to these assumptions in his characteristically direct and earthy way. "If wisdom has arisen," said Luang Por, "it was because of my defilements." Ajahn Chah was filled with restlessness, anger, tremendous doubt and voluminous lust. The only hindrance with which he was not blessed in full measure was dullness. The other hindrances blazed so magnificently in his psyche that there was no room for sleepiness.

As a new monk, Ajahn Chah wanted to get a handle on his sexual desire. He decided, as a plan of action, not to look at any woman for the entire three - month rain's retreat. Whenever a female person entered the monastery, he practiced restraint and looked down. At the end of the retreat, he thought he had done pretty well. To test whether he had been cured of his lust, he decided to deliberately look at the village women when they came to the monastery. Rather than having gone beyond lust, he found that he was a complete mess. As he related it, when his eyes rested on a woman, it was as if he had been struck by lightning - his lust was that overwhelming. Although he failed in this instance, he learned a valuable lesson: restraint is insufficient in overcoming defilements. One needs to develop understanding as well.
_/|\_
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Tue Sep 18, 2012 4:36 am

Restraint is insufficient in overcoming defilements. One needs to develop understanding as well.

Very good point, but that does not say that it is possible to understand it well if there is still no restain and somehow it also does not indicate that it would be easier if doing it without restain. It just tells that one who restains does not indicate that he has overcome lust.
That is a very importand thing as many believe that for instance a monk or ascet is a holy being forgetting that he could be a mine of lust.

a story from Abhidhamma in daily life:

2. Pariyutthana Moha

When moha arises together with the mind it is said that the bad mind, the unwholesome one; has appeared. Because of the concealing nature of this pariyutthana moha, evil consequences, which one may suffer in future, are not understood. And the evil of unwholesome actions of the present are also not understood. Therefore, even the learned and virtuous cannot see the evils of moha and will commit wrong deeds when moha arises. This moha in the domain of evils is the most wicked. In this world all wickedness and stupidity originate from moha; moha is the taproot of all evil.

The Wise Overwhelmed by Delusion

The Bodhisattva, Haritaca by name, having renounced the world, abandoning his immense wealth of eight crores of money became a hermit and attained the great supernatural power (jhana-abhinna). Then, as the rains were heavy in the Himalayas, he came to Baranasi and stayed in the King's garden. The King of Baranasi was his old friend who was fulfilling perfections parami to become the Venerable Ánanda. Therefore, as soon as he saw the hermit, he revered him so much that he asked him to stay in the royal garden and supported him with four requisites; he himself used to offer the hermit morning meals at the palace.

Once, a rebellion broke out in the country, the King himself had to go out to quell it. Before setting out with his army, he requested the queen again and again not to forget to look after the hermit. The queen did as told. One early morning, she took a bath with scented water and put on fine cloths and lay down on the couch awaiting for the hermit.

The Bodhisattva came through space with his supernormal power (abhinna), and arrived at the palace window. Hearing the flutter of the hermit's robe, the queen hastily rose from her cough and her dress fell off her. Seeing the naked queen, the anusaya moha which lay dormant in his mind-continuum, rose to the stage of pariyutthana moha, and filled with lust, he took the queen's hand and committed immoral transgression like a monster ogre.

Note:

We should consider the stupidity arising through moha in this story seriously. If such moha did not appear in him, he would not have committed such as evil deed even with the King's consent. But at the time, being overwhelmed by the darkness of delusion, he was unable to see evils of deed in the present and in future existences through out samsara, and consequently committed that improper transgression. The jhana-abhinna, which he acquired through practice for all his life, was unable to dispel the darkness of moha; instead, being overwhelmed by moha the jhana-abhinna powers themselves vanished from him.

But the hermit, being already quite matured in the perfection parami, learnt a bitter lesson and greatly repented his deed on the return of the King. He endeavored again and again his jhana-abhinna and contemplating, "I have done wrong because of dwelling in close proximity with the people," return to the Himalayas.

Note also, that Bodhisatta does not indicate "noble".

We actually do not train to be virtuos, but we train us in being virtouse to overcome moha.
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Mr Man » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:14 am

Hanzze wrote:
Mr Man wrote:We all have to live the real.

What do you mean by live the real?

I mean we can only work with things as they are now. Our situation as it is.
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:17 am

How is the situation? If you tell me that you are just in a swinger club, I understand your probelm but even so it has a door.
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Mr Man » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:22 am

Alex123 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:That is an archetype. We all have to live the real.



What do you believe that this palace story is supposed to teach us? That we can live at our rich homes and pursue the Dhamma as well as an ascetic Bhikkhu?


The palace story is irrelevant.
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Mr Man » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:24 am

Hanzze wrote:How is the situation? If you tell me that you are just in a swinger club, I understand your probelm but even so it has a door.


Hanzze, what are you talking about?
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:28 am

I ask how our (your) situation is, as you told to need to live according it. The swinger club should just bring the focus back on the topic and take your "situation-is the messure" with it.
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: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Mr Man » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:37 am

Hanzze wrote:I ask how our (your) situation is, as you told to need to live according it.

My personal situation is irrelevant. I don't think we are going anywhere here.
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Re: Should sex be demonized so much?

Postby Hanzze » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:39 am

My personal situation is irrelevant.

I guess also, the individual as well as the "real". So we can agree at this point?
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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