TheNoBSBuddhist wrote:I'm sorry, but I am calling BS on this. [That being gay or a woman is a result of previous bad kamma.] And I'm the NoBS Buddhist. How in heaven's name does he know?? And honestly, with everyone here telling you that he's wrong, giving you references, teachings and articles to PROVE to you that he is wrong - why are you still giving him any credence whatsoever?? Quit making excuses or putting forward reasons - He is wrong!!
And I am calling BS on your opinion. No one has proved that he is wrong. He knows this, because unlike you, the elder has a good knowledge of the texts and Commentaries. One can find similar statements in books by other well-known elders, such as “What Kamma Is” by Sayādaw U Ṭhitila.
To complete the offence of un-chastity (sexual misconduct), four conditions are necessary, viz: the mind to enjoy the forbidden object, the attempt to enjoy, devices to obtain, and possession. The effects of un-chastity are: having many enemies, getting undesirable wives, birth as a woman or as an eunuch.
When elders make such statements, they are not just expressing their personal opinions as you are, nor do they have the knowledge of previous lives, but they do have knowledge of the texts and Commentaries.
Women suffer greater hardship than men do in this life — that is an undeniable fact even in liberal societies. Even nuns do not enjoy the same wide support that monks enjoy.
Women have to endure the effects of menstruation and childbirth. Gay men and women have to endure the additional suffering of rejection by their own parents or siblings, social ostracism, prejudice and discrimination in the workplace, and oppression from unjust laws in many countries. Those who know Buddhism well are neither sexist nor homophobic. They understand that sexual desire is the cause of birth, and that from birth the whole mass of suffering arises. Whether one is heterosexual, homosexual, or celibate, sexual desire leads to suffering.
They understand that the diversity of living beings is due to the diversity of their kamma, it is not just an accidental or random occurrence without any cause. They also understand that wholesome kamma always gives agreeable results, and that unwholesome kamma always gives disagreeable results. The concluding statement in De Silva's article shows the attitude of well-informed traditional Buddhists:
This had led some Western homosexuals to believe that homosexuality is quite accepted in Buddhist countries of South and South-east Asia. This is certainly not true. In such countries, when homosexuals are thought of at all, it is more likely to be in a good-humored way or with a degree of pity. Certainly the loathing, fear and hatred that the Western homosexual has so often had to endure is absent and this is due, to a very large degree, to Buddhism's humane and tolerant influence.
There is at least as much unwholesome kamma made by heterosexuals driven by craving as is done by homosexuals. Promiscuity, Adultery, Child molestation, Rape, etc., are all heavy unwholesome kamma. Homosexuals are no more and no less likely to commit sexual misconduct than heterosexuals, but they still have to suffer more due to societal prejudice.
culaavuso wrote: Conjecture about past lives does not seem to be particularly helpful to the path.
That would depend on how it is done. When we suffer injustice of any kind, we can reflect wisely that since it was not due to anything we did in this existence, that it may have been due to something done in a previous existence. Wise reflection will enable us to let go of enmity, and have compassion for the wrong-doer who is mistreating us.
It's easy to be happy and gay, as long as life goes one's own way,
But the man worthwhile is the man with a smile,
When everything goes dead wrong.