How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible.

How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby CalBudd » Tue Jul 30, 2013 6:59 am

I have no vices as such except couple of cigarettes a day and a bottle of beer at times. I have meat irregularly, about once a week. Am I breaking the five precepts ? Is there any guilt in Buddhism. I understand there is no sin in Buddhism.

Basically I am trying to ask what do I have to subtract from my daily life to be a good Buddhist (what activities - I already have a grasp of the emotional, psychological state expected of me). I am a bodybuilder in spare time. I googled "Buddhism + Bodybuilding" and read in another Forum that Buddhists should not pursue such things. But to me it seems ideal. A sane mind in a healthy body (not that i should use steroids). If I do not go to gym I will grow over weight.

:anjali:
CalBudd
 
Posts: 43
Joined: Sun Jun 30, 2013 11:40 am

Re: How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby Kim OHara » Tue Jul 30, 2013 7:35 am

Hi, CalBudd,
Starting points are the Five Precepts - http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dhamma/sila/pancasila.html - and the four Brahmaviharas - http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/nyanaponika/wheel006.html.
If you can maintain these all the time - or even most of the time - you will be a good person and a better Buddhist than most.

They are training rules and guidelines for conduct which will help you, and incidentally people around you, be happier. Breaking them, a little or a lot, is not a sin but is unhelpful and may cause regret, shame or guilt because it means you have let yourself down and maybe broken your promises to yourself.

Best wishes for the journey!

:namaste:
Kim
User avatar
Kim OHara
 
Posts: 3196
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:47 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby lyndon taylor » Tue Jul 30, 2013 8:22 am

The precepts are really important to me, because not only am I not accumulating bad karma, but I feel good about myself, being able to say I keep the precepts gives me a certain sense of worth or value, however vain, and ultimately unimportant that may be,

Honesty means very much to me, but right speech is a little harder. Sobriety is the secret to controlling my mental illness and keeping me employed. The buddhist precept on intoxicants can be interpreted two ways, the lazy way, don't do enough to get f'd up and lose you control; intoxicated, the strict way don't do any drink or drug that has the potential to get you f'd up, Many northern school apply this to cigarettes, many therevada, even monks allow smoking, because you can't loose control of your judgement by smoking or coffee, for instance. Me I still smoke cigs but One beer would affect me negatively, because I don't drink. At least for now I don't think you have anything to worry about anything. But if you're only drinking one beer a week, how hard would it be to give that up?? If not so hard, I say do it.

As to meat eating its too controversial, the Buddha allowed some meat eating, but didn't seem to want to make it easy, in fact his rules If strictly interpreted might apply against supermarket meat, because you're paying someone to kill the animal for you, I wouldn't let Buddhism tell you to or not to eat meat, I would use your own mind, The buddha loved animals, he didn't want us to kill them, you have to use you're own judgement how you interpret that.
18 years ago I made one of the most important decisions of my life and entered a local Cambodian Buddhist Temple as a temple boy and, for only 3 weeks, an actual Therevada Buddhist monk. I am not a scholar, great meditator, or authority on Buddhism, but Buddhism is something I love from the Bottom of my heart. It has taught me sobriety, morality, peace, and very importantly that my suffering is optional, and doesn't have to run my life. I hope to give back what little I can to the Buddhist community that has so generously given me so much, sincerely former monk John
User avatar
lyndon taylor
 
Posts: 911
Joined: Mon May 02, 2011 11:41 pm
Location: Redlands, Southern California, USA

Re: How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby Coyote » Tue Jul 30, 2013 8:54 am

CalBudd,

There is no contradiction between Buddhism and bodybuilding as far as I am aware of, in that case we may as well prohibit following fashion, using make-up and other things that may be interpreted as being vain. The key is moderation. I believe good bodily health, including proper nutrition, is doubly important given the state of health in western countries and across the world.
Although cigarettes are not usually seen as breaking any of the precepts, you may want to cut down or give up completely if you value your health, especially as a bodybuilder. There has been at least one member on this site that has done so. There is also no contradiction between (Theravada) Buddhism and meat eating in itself, although there are some who give up the practice of eating meat as an ascetic practice (usually monks) or out of compassion. Strict prohibition of meat for ethical reasons is done in the Mahayana branch of Buddhism.

Good luck and best wishes
"If beings knew, as I know, the results of giving & sharing, they would not eat without having given, nor would the stain of miserliness overcome their minds. Even if it were their last bite, their last mouthful, they would not eat without having shared."
Iti 26
Coyote
 
Posts: 556
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 12:42 pm
Location: Wales - UK

Re: How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby Ben » Tue Jul 30, 2013 10:35 am

Greetings Calbud

14. The Good Buddhist

The preceding sections of this essay will help the Buddhist lay follower to understand, from a practical angle, the main points of the Buddha's teachings as they bear on the conduct of daily life. Constant practice of these principles will ensure that they are built into his character, enabling him to develop into a well-rounded human being, a center of sanity in a confused world adrift in fashionable philosophies full of empty promises.

At the very minimum a lay follower of the Buddha must keep the Five Precepts, which enables him to develop virtue in regard to his bodily and verbal behavior. But one should not stop with this. One who seeks the true perfection of happiness must also attend to the cultivation of the mind. One must be mindful of the arising of unwholesome states such as greed, anger, and delusion, and know how to deal with them effectively when they threaten to throw one off balance. One should proceed even further and attempt to cultivate the mind systematically through the practice of meditation for tranquillity and insight.

The society in which we live is a reflection of the minds of the human beings who have created that society. If our society has become corrupt, rife with immorality, and destructive of the higher potentials of human nature, that is because the people who comprise that society have allowed themselves to drift into corrupt and immoral states of mind. The quality of a society inevitably rests on the quality of the lives led by the persons who make up that society. One single individual may not be able to change the whole society for the better. But each one of us can, at any rate, transform the world of our own mind.

How is this to be done? By observing the Five Precepts flawlessly, by being as mindful as possible in everyday life, by cleansing the mind of its blemishes, by cultivating the four sublime states, by meditating energetically every day, by listening to discourses on the Dhamma and clarifying one's doubts about the teaching. By following these guidelines one is sure to reap their fruits: peace of mind, contentment, the absence of inner conflicts even in the midst of our confusing and chaotic world.

A good Buddhist should ever seek the opportunity to do deeds of mercy, kindness, and charity. He should be keen on helping those less fortunate than himself. When practicing giving, however, one should give with discrimination, as the Buddha advises: viceyya danam databbam. Thus the most needy will be benefited with the things they need most.

A good Buddhist should set apart a few minutes every day to review the day's happenings, and to see whether or not he has strayed from the Master's teachings. If so, he should inquire why he has done so in order to avoid a future repetition. Methodical reading on the Dhamma will also help one to put the whole of life into the right perspective. It is a useful habit to read daily an inspiring discourse of the Buddha, such as the Maha-Mangala Sutta, or to recite some verses of the Dhammapada and reflect for a few moments on their relevance to one's own life. Doing so will help one to forget one's trifling worries and troubles, to clarify one's thinking, and to recall the ultimate values and truths upon which one should build one's life.

The Buddha's teachings consist of virtue, concentration, and wisdom. Only with their practice will the Buddha-Dhamma flourish; when they are neglected, the Buddha-Dhamma will decline. This fact should always be remembered by those who are anxious to avert the decline and disappearance of the Sasana. As religion withers the world over, more and more attention is paid to empty rites, rituals, and ceremonies, while little or no attention is paid to the actual practice of the principles of religion as they bear on real life. It is this, however, that matters most.

By following the above guidelines, a good Buddhist will grow in all aspects of the Dhamma. These guidelines will help to mold one's whole personality, to instil the true principles of the Dhamma into one's understanding, to train the emotions and to discipline the will. Doing so will conduce to the ultimate best interest of oneself, and help one to make one's life a blessing for others as well.

May you and I and all other beings
be well and happy.

-- http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... .html#ch14


You will also find that there are very many Buddhists who do maintain the body for wellbeing and longevity through exercise and good nutrition. Such as myself. When activities such as bodybuilding or other forms of exercise becomes unwholesome is when we develop attachment to the body (or the exercise), objectify the body or develop materialist views relating to the body. Attachment, conceit and wrong views are dealt with at length in the suttas.
kind regards,

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725


Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR
Buddhist Life Stories of Australia

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com
User avatar
Ben
Site Admin
 
Posts: 16311
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: Land of the sleeping gods

Re: How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby convivium » Tue Jul 30, 2013 3:33 pm

you don't have to be an anything in buddhism.
buddhism will give you stratagies, suggested guidelines, and perspectives.
explore and try them for yourself. see what works and what doesn't.
in daily life, mindfulness is important. lift weights mindfully.
Just keep breathing in and out like this. Don't be interested in anything else. It doesn't matter even if someone is standing on their head with their ass in the air. Don't pay it any attention. Just stay with the in-breath and the out-breath. Concentrate your awareness on the breath. Just keep doing it. http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Just_Do_It_1_2.php
User avatar
convivium
 
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 7:13 am

Re: How To Integrate Buddhism Into Daily Life

Postby mirco » Wed Jul 31, 2013 9:43 am

Dear CalBUdd,
CalBudd wrote:I have no vices as such except couple of cigarettes a day and a bottle of beer at times. I have meat irregularly, about once a week. Am I breaking the five precepts ? Is there any guilt in Buddhism. I understand there is no sin in Buddhism.

Basically I am trying to ask what do I have to subtract from my daily life to be a good Buddhist (what activities - I already have a grasp of the emotional, psychological state expected of me). I am a bodybuilder in spare time. I googled "Buddhism + Bodybuilding" and read in another Forum that Buddhists should not pursue such things. But to me it seems ideal. A sane mind in a healthy body (not that i should use steroids). If I do not go to gym I will grow over weight.

:anjali:

See, Buddhism is about outcomes. “What you do in the present moment, dictates what happens in the future!” It's Karma.
The "rules" are but suggestions to help making things easier.
If one lives by the silas, less hindrances will arise, meditation will become easier and progress is faster. That's all.
It's all connected.

  • intended killing → craving, lust, mind of "I want"
  • taking what is not given → hatred, aversion, mind of "I don't want"
  • sexual misconduct, that harms oneself or others → sloth and torpor
  • lying, gross speech, gossip, badger → restlessness, feelings of guilt, remorse, anxiety
  • taking drugs (alcohol is a drug) → doubt about the Buddha Dhamma plus it opens the gates for all the other things

What is Sila?

Warm Regards,
Mirco
I get what I give
User avatar
mirco
 
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2010 2:12 pm


Return to Discovering Theravāda

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests