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Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life - Dhamma Wheel

Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Dan74
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Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Dan74 » Sun Feb 07, 2010 9:47 am

Have you noticed yourself become more averse to all sorts of things in your life since becoming a Buddhist?

I have and it's not necessarily a bad thing for sure, if it gets us to drop some bad habits and develop more wholesome behaviours. But if we become averse to the sort of things that are part and parcel of our lives as lay people, in the hope that one day we might become monastics, then this is living in fantasy and not what the Buddha taught, is it?

I wanted to ask people if they've experienced this kind of a half-way renunciation, which is not a good thing I think, because we are not really renouncing, but rather we are cultivating aversion to what we do, to our repsonsibilities and our actual environment. So instead of engaging in a compassionate and helpful way we will be more likely to withdraw and make some sort of a Buddhist excuse for doing so.

Does it ring a bell for anyone?

_/|\_
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zavk
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby zavk » Sun Feb 07, 2010 9:57 am

With metta,
zavk

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tiltbillings
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:11 am


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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:29 am

• • • • (Upasampadā: 24th June, 1979)

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tiltbillings
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:33 am


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Ben
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Ben » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:37 am

Hi Dan
I think its a bit more complex than inadvertently developing subtle aversion, though I am sure that does happen as well. I think that its quite easy to mistake equanimity as aversion as a result of either retreat experiences or intensive day-to-day practice when one reacquaints oneself with loved and desired people and objects.

As a case in point, it is quite easy to mistake a practice like contemplation of death, of body parts or of the repulsiveness of food as developing aversion when in fact its about developing equanimity so that we can see things as they really are.

A recent experience of mine, however insignificant, was to attend a summer school course on cuisine design following a ten-day course. It appeared to me that my relationship with the unique Tasmanian produce we were sampling and learning to cook, was not characterized by the same depth of craving that I had in the past. The lack of "passion", I noted, was interesting to say the least.

I'm not suggesting that subtle aversion doesn't take place and we don't excuse it within ourselves through some kind of conceited perception. I'm sure all of us, myself included, are guilty if not capable of that. I think its interesting to analyze what's going on within ourselves.
kind regards

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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retrofuturist
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:45 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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baratgab
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby baratgab » Sun Feb 07, 2010 11:57 am

Did you consider that the aversion arises not from the lay activities, but from the act of forcing them on yourself despite of the fact that you reached the point on the path where these things would naturally fall away? After all, it is just natural that our inclinations change as we go along the path, in the direction of less busyness, less noise, less needless interaction and so on... :geek:

(While I was a Zen Buddhist I harboured the idea that mindfully living the everyday life is just the best practice that one could do; but fortunately I managed to get rid of this idea, which I think might have prevented me from reaching any attainments in this life.)
"Just as in the great ocean there is but one taste — the taste of salt — so in this Doctrine and Discipline there is but one taste — the taste of freedom"

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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Goofaholix » Mon Feb 08, 2010 4:55 am


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Dan74
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Dan74 » Mon Feb 08, 2010 1:17 pm

_/|\_

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LauraJ
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby LauraJ » Mon Feb 08, 2010 11:48 pm




Conquer the angry man by love. Conquer the ill-natured man by goodness. Conquer the miser with generosity. Conquer the liar with truth. -The Dhammapada

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Guy
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Guy » Mon Feb 08, 2010 11:59 pm

Four types of letting go:

1) Giving; expecting nothing back in return
2) Throwing things away
3) Contentment; wanting to be here, not wanting to be anywhere else
4) "Teflon Mind"; having a mind which doesn't accumulate things

- Ajahn Brahm

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Dan74
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Dan74 » Tue Feb 09, 2010 12:05 am

Like Bikkhu Pesala above says, we should bring mindfulness to aversion as it arises and observe it carefully (and without aversion :hug: )

_/|\_
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LauraJ
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby LauraJ » Tue Feb 09, 2010 12:21 am




Conquer the angry man by love. Conquer the ill-natured man by goodness. Conquer the miser with generosity. Conquer the liar with truth. -The Dhammapada

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Dan74
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Re: Half-way renunciation - cultivating aversion to lay life

Postby Dan74 » Tue Feb 09, 2010 12:48 am

Ordinary :shrug: extraordinary :shrug:

I just know I need to have a shower and take a nap (3 hours of sleep don't make dan a happy man)

_/|\_
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