E-Sangha

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

Re: E-Sangha

Postby jcsuperstar » Sat Jan 31, 2009 10:54 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Please don't let unwholesome thoughts about E-Sangha consume your mind and lead you to unhappy destinations.


man that would be the worst wouldnt it? to die mad at esangha and have that determine your rebirth... doomed to wander the burning hells of internet trolldom... :coffee:
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby clw_uk » Sat Jan 31, 2009 10:57 pm

One thing that seems to come accross on reading some posts on here and also on e-sangha itself is that people appear to be getting to involved in the site itself forgetting that it is just a friendly discussion about dhamma.

I dont think anyone on e-sangha has set out to intentionaly offend people/groups although it does on some occasions come accross as such.

Any website, organisation etc that offers a platform to discuss and spread dhamma in a peaceful and friendly way is doing a great service. I think troubles occur when, as stated above, people become to attached.

Thats just my take on things anyway :smile:

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“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby Placid-pool » Sat Jan 31, 2009 11:06 pm

I'm sure that ESangha provides a useful and necessary forum for discussion ... well, before this one was created - I just got utterly and totally fed up with the pervs that joined purely to air their obssessions and then tried to argue from a Dhamma point of view when someone asked them politely to stow it.

I know that all fora attract their fair share of nits but that one seemed to get more than theirs of people who needed serious psychiatric help.

And I agree - the best solution, if one is unhappy is to walk. Walk away and don't discuss it any more. The people who are left are happy there, the people who leave are happier - end of problem.

A similar situation happened on one of the bigger Pagan fora - many of us upped and offed. But there are still people around, four years down the line bad-mouthing everyone who has anything to do with it on any forum they can find ....... unhealthy and unhelpful.

Now let's all have a nice cup of tea and wish them well - they're welcome to a bit of cake any time too. I am totally non-sectarian in my cake-sharing :toast:
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby jcsuperstar » Sat Jan 31, 2009 11:11 pm

i think its just a matter of mixing traditions and thinking theres not going to be problems, as if all buddhist traditions have gotten along just fine up until the internet.

dhammawheel is a bit different from esangha as it has a focus of sorts that while open to all traditions theres an expectation that theravada isnt going to be subjected to being "real buddhisms" kid brother. we dont have to deal with hinayana this or provisional buddhism that.

there was once a question posed by a member over there as to why other sects where dismissive of their sect, and i replied that all the members of their sect i had ever met never knew any teachings of buddhism outside of that sect. and i got back basicly that there was no need to learn "provisional buddhism" i didnt go back to respond, but i was left thinking, there's the answer to your question as to why other buddhist dont think to highly of your sect...
and this atitude is found pretty much in all sects,

theres seems to be this attitude that theravada is the basics or foundation of mahayana, but doesnt that imply that it's what you learn first? so all those on the mahayana path should be not only well aquainted with the doctrines of theravada but at least to the level of stream enterer, as that would at least meant that they had the "basics" down before moving on right?

i dont know.. people like to have the last word, and people like to be right, and sometimes its just too much to just leave things be. and the internet lets people say things to other people they may never say in real life. which is a double edged sword
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby hrtbeat7 » Sat Jan 31, 2009 11:13 pm

retrofuturist wrote: E-Sangha offers a valuable service, particularly I think to absolute beginners who can adjust quickly to the laws of the land.


Great post, Thanks!

:namaste:
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby davcuts » Sat Jan 31, 2009 11:26 pm

I hope I didn't come across as badmouthing e-Sangha. I have no desire to leave. It just feels different. I suppose I am attached to it. It's the only Sangha I've got so it means a lot to me. I'm sad to see people leave, and yes that does come from attachment. I'm also a moderator for a group and I know it's not always easy. I've had to ban people, mainly trolls. I can understand why some people have been removed from e-Sangha. Why some had to be banned is still a mystery to me. Ultimately I have to respect e-Sangha's policies. While I do that I'll try to work on my attachment. :cry:
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby clw_uk » Sat Jan 31, 2009 11:43 pm

jcsuperstar wrote:i think its just a matter of mixing traditions and thinking theres not going to be problems, as if all buddhist traditions have gotten along just fine up until the internet.

dhammawheel is a bit different from esangha as it has a focus of sorts that while open to all traditions theres an expectation that theravada isnt going to be subjected to being "real buddhisms" kid brother. we dont have to deal with hinayana this or provisional buddhism that.

there was once a question posed by a member over there as to why other sects where dismissive of their sect, and i replied that all the members of their sect i had ever met never knew any teachings of buddhism outside of that sect. and i got back basicly that there was no need to learn "provisional buddhism" i didnt go back to respond, but i was left thinking, there's the answer to your question as to why other buddhist dont think to highly of your sect...
and this atitude is found pretty much in all sects,

theres seems to be this attitude that theravada is the basics or foundation of mahayana, but doesnt that imply that it's what you learn first? so all those on the mahayana path should be not only well aquainted with the doctrines of theravada but at least to the level of stream enterer, as that would at least meant that they had the "basics" down before moving on right?

i dont know.. people like to have the last word, and people like to be right, and sometimes its just too much to just leave things be. and the internet lets people say things to other people they may never say in real life. which is a double edged sword


:goodpost:


I do agree that it seems most people dont examin the other sects enough, it is important to get a good knowledge of all thats being offered. Myself I will admit that I know very little about mahayana (something that im working on) so I do try to keep an open mind. Trouble is all beginners have craving so it seems natural for them to fall into a trap of grasping at their particular teachings and being dismissive of the rest. Most seem to shake this as there practice goes on but i think some unfortunately stay with it.
“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby kc2dpt » Sat Jan 31, 2009 11:51 pm

genkaku wrote:Elevating or suppressing the one in order to eradicate the other is a fool's errand.

Are you familiar with the Buddha's teaching on Right Effort?
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby appicchato » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:10 am

:thumbsup:
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby Dharmajim » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:28 am

There is an aspect to the history of e-sangha that I think should be taken into account. Many of the initial participants at e-sangha had bitter experience with previous online inter-Buddhist forums. I am thinking particularly of Tricycle, which used to operate an online forum that in some ways was structured along the lines of e-sangha. I was a participant in the Tricycle Forum, so I am speaking from firsthand knowledge.

The Tricycle Forum collapsed due to Tricycle's inability to effectively moderate trolls who became more and more aggressive. Some of their posts bordered on the threatening. My recollection is that at least one person was actually threatened. Sarcasm and name calling became pervasive. When it reached that stage Tricycle closed it down, and I don't blame them. It takes a lot of time and commitment to moderate such a forum and achieving the right balance is a difficult challenge. That is why, when one small Tibetan sect was banned from e-sangha that, in my experience, did not deserve it, I did not protest. I felt that I understood the motivation, which was not to have a repeat of what happened at Tricycle (and some other early online inter-Buddhist groups; for example there was a very large, many thousands, inter-Buddhist group at MSN groups which collapsed for similar reasons).

Understanding this background has helped me to comprehend some of the decisions that were made even when I didn't agree with them. I hope this is of some assistance.

Sincerely,

Jim
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby teacup_bo » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:40 am

genkaku wrote:I may have missed the point -- not unusual -- but I was trying to suggest that the 'good' -- however beautifully wrapped -- and the 'bad' -- however disgustingly portrayed -- come as a single package. So the upshot is, for my money, to investigate the 'good' with as much care as anyone might bring to the 'bad' ... and not be shy about it. Elevating or suppressing the one in order to eradicate the other is a fool's errand.

Or anyway, that's my take.


:buddha1:

What genkaku is pointing to is entirely within the sensibilities of the Dhamma masters.

"The teaching of Buddhism is about giving up evil and practicing good. Then, when evil is given up and goodness is established, we must let go of both good and evil."

"The mind of one who practices is the same; it doesn't run away anywhere, it stays right there. Good, evil, happiness, and unhappiness, right and wrong arise, and he knows them all. The meditator simply knows them, they don't enter his mind. That is, he has no clinging. He is simply the experiencer. To say he simply experiences is our common language. In the language of Dhamma we say he lets his mind follow the Middle Way."

Luang Por Chah
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:45 am

:hello: Hi, Bo!

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: E-Sangha

Postby genkaku » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:47 am

Peter wrote:
genkaku wrote:Elevating or suppressing the one in order to eradicate the other is a fool's errand.

Are you familiar with the Buddha's teaching on Right Effort?


Dear Peter -- Thanks very much. I was interested in the phrase, "for the sake of" -- a phrase I did not take to mean using one thing as a means of eradicating another.

But perhaps I am wrong.
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:59 am

genkaku wrote:
Peter wrote:
genkaku wrote:Elevating or suppressing the one in order to eradicate the other is a fool's errand.

Are you familiar with the Buddha's teaching on Right Effort?


Dear Peter -- Thanks very much. I was interested in the phrase, "for the sake of" -- a phrase I did not take to mean using one thing as a means of eradicating another.

But perhaps I am wrong.


That was how I took it Genkaku but I seem to have a different interpretation from the other three people who have commented on it.

Lift up that which is wholesome.
Reject that which is unwholesome.

But do them both-it's not like a see-saw with one side relying on the other. It's not like you can't do both at the same time by cultivating Right Intention. They're not interdependent in that sense. Rather, develop a love for that which is wholesome, and tendency to reject that which is unwholesome without having to weigh one against the other because hopefully with practice it becomes obvious. Change the habits.

Anyhow, that's how I took it. I like my crazy way of reading things :cookoo:

As to the subject at hand, it seems that Retro really put thought into that post he wrote. Cool :ugeek:

I like e-sangha a lot and I read and post there. And when I don't write there I'm still reading usually.

Kindly,
Drolma
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby teacup_bo » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:02 am

retrofuturist wrote::hello: Hi, Bo!

Metta,
Retro. :)


Hello retro - hope the heat is not too insufferable
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:04 am

Thanks Bo... it's cooled down over the last day or two back into the 30's... so back to "normal Summer".

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby teacup_bo » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:10 am

Dharmajim wrote:There is an aspect to the history of e-sangha that I think should be taken into account. Many of the initial participants at e-sangha had bitter experience with previous online inter-Buddhist forums. I am thinking particularly of Tricycle, which used to operate an online forum that in some ways was structured along the lines of e-sangha. I was a participant in the Tricycle Forum, so I am speaking from firsthand knowledge.

The Tricycle Forum collapsed due to Tricycle's inability to effectively moderate trolls who became more and more aggressive. Some of their posts bordered on the threatening. My recollection is that at least one person was actually threatened. Sarcasm and name calling became pervasive. When it reached that stage Tricycle closed it down, and I don't blame them. It takes a lot of time and commitment to moderate such a forum and achieving the right balance is a difficult challenge. That is why, when one small Tibetan sect was banned from e-sangha that, in my experience, did not deserve it, I did not protest. I felt that I understood the motivation, which was not to have a repeat of what happened at Tricycle (and some other early online inter-Buddhist groups; for example there was a very large, many thousands, inter-Buddhist group at MSN groups which collapsed for similar reasons).

Understanding this background has helped me to comprehend some of the decisions that were made even when I didn't agree with them. I hope this is of some assistance.

Sincerely,

Jim


This is a very helpful perspective, Jim. Thankyou for bringing it. I believe, in the realm of causes and conditons, this is just how things are. As we here (and in the new upcoming forums) will be 'influenced' by our experiences at E-sangha, and hence in our style and direction, so have they.

There is no single cause for anything, and whilst I find some parts of the moderation there not agreeable to me, it does not mean that E-sangha was a write off or poor even now.

In fact it is still a valuable contributor to Buddhist discussion, community and exploration.

The fact is everyone is just where they are, and I have never been guilt free in any of what has happened in our world. The fact that there are many complaints is a function of some over zealous moderation and lack of transparency, which I have disagreed with as well - and still would, but also that it is the largest board at the moment - it is hard to please everyone and the stance as taken is what it is. As Jim points out, it is not always easy to strike that balance, and the team at the helm do have a certainly cultural element (cultural as in similarity in outlook/approach). Still, they are doing what they know and that is the case for nearly all of us, I suspect.

I would not write them off completely yet. Things change and they do play a valuable - and fundamentally sound role, I believe as I said above.

And even if one does, there are now quite a plethora of Buddhist/spiritual forums around with scatterings of good practitioners around - a community which E-sangha also helped us bring together in the first place. So we are where we are - let's look ahead.

Bless E-sangha, bless the world, bless us all.
Last edited by teacup_bo on Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:16 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby hrtbeat7 » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:12 am

genkaku wrote:Elevating or suppressing the one in order to eradicate the other is a fool's errand.



I find a lot of resonance in this, from Nisargadatta Maharaj:

"Just realize that you are dreaming a dream you call the world, and stop looking for ways out. The dream is not your problem. Your problem is that you like one part of your dream and not another. Love all, or none of it, and stop complaining. "

:namaste:
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby teacup_bo » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:15 am

retrofuturist wrote:Thanks Bo... it's cooled down over the last day or two back into the 30's... so back to "normal Summer".

Metta,
Retro. :)


I really felt for the tennis players on the 40 day - ahh well until I saw their prize money :) Best wishes.
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Re: E-Sangha

Postby teacup_bo » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:20 am

hrtbeat7 wrote:
genkaku wrote:Elevating or suppressing the one in order to eradicate the other is a fool's errand.



I find a lot of resonance in this, from Nisargadatta Maharaj:

"Just realize that you are dreaming a dream you call the world, and stop looking for ways out. The dream is not your problem. Your problem is that you like one part of your dream and not another. Love all, or none of it, and stop complaining. "

:namaste:


Whilst I don't know much about dreams, I do know that the Buddha Way is not about suppression, stifling or fiddling personalities - it is a bit more "transcendent" than that if you can excuse my poor use of terminology. Thus, I found what genkaku pointed out a helpful pointer.

namaste.
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