Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Training of Sila, the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).

Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Tue Jan 06, 2009 3:21 pm

Hi, all,

Perhaps you have watched the US series "Dog" the bounty- hunter from Hawaii on TV.

I watched it yesterday, suddenly wondering what type of livelihood that is.

On the one hand, it is some sort of trade with human beings.

You catch them, and get money for them.

But it's not trading slaves or prostitutes.

It's getting criminals off the roads, who could do more damage to our society if free.

So actually it's good livelihood, despite of the trade traces, or no? And then think of the karmic dimension of this.

I think this is quite fascinating to think about...also, because Dog had a past which was not so golden and he might be undoing some bad karma...

Your thoughts?

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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Fede » Tue Jan 06, 2009 8:38 pm

They seem to be very determined and are not put off by being given the run-around.
The language is rich too.
However, (whatever your religious persuasion) they do pray a lot, and seem most devout.
And another thing I have noticed, is that they seem to care and have compassion for those they hunt, track down and bring in.
They're not physically gentle, but they use loving words, and seem to project a good attitude.
And they want a lot of the folks they catch to "clean up their act".

It's entertaining.

His wife is something else though..... :lol:
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:28 pm

Yes, they show compassion. Their intentions are good. They pray, I like that. They ask for blessings and protection in the way that is common in their environment, not very different from the Buddhist prayers I sometimes see.

So, is it wrong or right livelyhood, in the Buddhist sense, Fede? What would you say?
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby kc2dpt » Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:28 pm

"Trading in humans" means slave trade. Bounty hunters seem more like police consultants, hired to help enforce the law. I don't think this is wrong livelihood.
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:31 pm

Greetings,

I agree with Peter that it doesn't constitute Wrong LIvelihood per se, but I think it would be a real challenge to uphold the Noble Eightfold Path as a Bounty Hunter... particularly Right Action and Right Thought/Intention.... even though apparently they do OK at the Right Speech.

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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Jan 07, 2009 12:56 am

Don't care for the program! it is not a case of justice but wallet is served!
yes some criminals need to be tracked down, but people are employed to do this, bounty hunters are looking for the money and in this case possible redemption.
bounty hunters pray not only on those who are wanted but on the pocket of those who want protecting!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby stuka » Wed Jan 07, 2009 8:08 am

Live by the sword, die by the sword.

That cat only just barely escaped Mexican prison -- only by his media-generated, and backed, celebrity -- for the kidnapping that brought so much initial media attention to his little freak show. Mexican prison makes Angola (LA) look like a cakewalk.

I am reminded of that "Crocodile Hunter" idiot, throwing himself on a stingray's barb.

One day, that poor attention-seeking moron will attempt to strut and showboat his way through some desperate soul's front door just long enough for them to place both barrels of a 12-gauge right on his lips and splatter his brains all over the following cameras and your television screen.

The price of ego-clinging is indeed high.
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 9:20 am

Manapa wrote:Don't care for the program! it is not a case of justice but wallet is served!
yes some criminals need to be tracked down, but people are employed to do this, bounty hunters are looking for the money and in this case possible redemption.
bounty hunters pray not only on those who are wanted but on the pocket of those who want protecting!


Greetings, Braveheart, :D

but I didn't really want to know wether you feel aversion to the series. ;)

Right livelihood ? Yes or No? :twisted:

:smilie with courteous bow:

bounty hunters pray not only on those who are wanted but on the pocket of those who want protecting!


Do you mean "prey" or "pray"? (Truly not sure....) I assume it's the first...

To be honest, I also prey on the wallets of my customers, lest I want to starve.

That I enjoy my job is the cherry on the cake.... ;)

I also assume we all prey on the reward of our work, so to speak the wallet of our employers or customers? You keep 'em satisfied so you have to eat, no=? :D

Unless you are a born billionaire....

I'm not.

Thus, I too, am a bird of prey,- right on.
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby stuka » Wed Jan 07, 2009 9:41 am

Right livelihood ? Yes or No? :twisted:


No.
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 10:00 am

stuka wrote:Live by the sword, die by the sword.

That cat only just barely escaped Mexican prison -- only by his media-generated, and backed, celebrity -- for the kidnapping that brought so much initial media attention to his little freak show. Mexican prison makes Angola (LA) look like a cakewalk.

I am reminded of that "Crocodile Hunter" idiot, throwing himself on a stingray's barb.

One day, that poor attention-seeking moron will attempt to strut and showboat his way through some desperate soul's front door just long enough for them to place both barrels of a 12-gauge right on his lips and splatter his brains all over the following cameras and your television screen.



I am reminded of that "Crocodile Hunter" idiot, throwing himself on a stingray's barb.


Ouch! That hurts ....I'm sure this is some colorful language, but what happened to right speech and to compassion? :o

One day, that poor attention-seeking moron will attempt to strut and showboat his way through some desperate soul's front door just long enough for them to place both barrels of a 12-gauge right on his lips and splatter his brains all over the following cameras and your television screen.


Boah...!!!


Please.

Anyhow, even though I am obviously less familiar with the series and Dog Chapman as most members here, I hear he caught a serial rapist , for which I assume a lot of victims and possible future victims and families are thankful.

I am also quite sure with this he accumulated good karma.

I also know that the local auhtorities often can't or won't investigate and search as thouroughly as necessary,- they are often not as motivated to work as selfemployed people whose livelihood depends on success, and not on physical presence in their shift.

I don't think there is anything wrong with catching criminals, is there?

Many jobs are dangerous.

Life will kill ya anyhow.
Last edited by Annapurna on Wed Jan 07, 2009 10:07 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 10:02 am

stuka wrote:
Right livelihood ? Yes or No? :twisted:


No.


Please explain why it doesn't constitue right livelhood according to the Buddhadharma.

Thanks!
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Ben » Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:27 am

Hi Annabel

Perhaps we need to define what wrong livelihood is:

"A lay follower should not engage in five types of business. Which five? Business in weapons, business in human beings, business in meat, business in intoxicants, and business in poison."

— AN 5.177


It could be argued that bounty hunting is wrong livelihood because of the significant role of weapons and the similarity to human trafficking. Whichever way you want to argue it, it is pretty clear that the activities of the bounty hunter in question are morally reprehensible. Personally, I wouldn't pursue bounty hunting as a career option if I could avoid it and I don't think 'Dog' or any of his associates would make for model citizens.
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby stuka » Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:40 am

Annabel wrote:
Ouch! That hurts ....I'm sure this is some colorful language, but what happened to right speech and to compassion? :o


It is being balanced with experience and clear-seeing.
One day, that poor attention-seeking moron will attempt to strut and showboat his way through some desperate soul's front door just long enough for them to place both barrels of a 12-gauge right on his lips and splatter his brains all over the following cameras and your television screen.


Boah...!!!


Please.


Ah, please, ...what...?

Anyhow, even though I am obviously less familiar with the series and Dog Chapman as most members here, I hear he caught a serial rapist , for which I assume a lot of victims and possible future victims and families are thankful.


You really think that wasn't staged and all set up nice and safe for him....?
I am also quite sure with this he accumulated good karma.


...yeah...sure... :roll:

I also know that the local auhtorities often can't or won't investigate and search as thouroughly as necessary,- they are often not as motivated to work as selfemployed people whose livelihood depends on success, and not on physical presence in their shift.


Sounds like a rather broad and self-serving over-generalization to me. You haven't been following the recent activities of the Denver Metro police forces lately, I can see.
I don't think there is anything wrong with catching criminals, is there?

Many jobs are dangerous.

Life will kill ya anyhow.


retreat, retreat, retreat....
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby stuka » Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:43 am

Ben wrote:Hi Annabel

Perhaps we need to define what wrong livelihood is:

"A lay follower should not engage in five types of business. Which five? Business in weapons, business in human beings, business in meat, business in intoxicants, and business in poison."

— AN 5.177


It could be argued that bounty hunting is wrong livelihood because of the significant role of weapons and the similarity to human trafficking. Whichever way you want to argue it, it is pretty clear that the activities of the bounty hunter in question are morally reprehensible. Personally, I wouldn't pursue bounty hunting as a career option if I could avoid it and I don't think 'Dog' or any of his associates would make for model citizens.
Kind regards

Ben


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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 12:09 pm

Ben wrote:Hi Annabel

Perhaps we need to define what wrong livelihood is:

"A lay follower should not engage in five types of business. Which five? Business in weapons, business in human beings, business in meat, business in intoxicants, and business in poison."

— AN 5.177


It could be argued that bounty hunting is wrong livelihood because of the significant role of weapons and the similarity to human trafficking. Whichever way you want to argue it, it is pretty clear that the activities of the bounty hunter in question are morally reprehensible. Personally, I wouldn't pursue bounty hunting as a career option if I could avoid it and I don't think 'Dog' or any of his associates would make for model citizens.
Kind regards

Ben


Thank you, Ben! Very helpful.


However, don't you find the word "business" a bit vague as well?

I read "dealing" in other translations, as here for instance by Bikkhu Bodhi, which seems to be a bot more specific, at least in my understanding. "Business" is a very vast field.

Right Livelihood (samma ajiva)

Right livelihood is concerned with ensuring that one earns one's living in a righteous way. For a lay disciple the Buddha teaches that wealth should be gained in accordance with certain standards. One should acquire it only by legal means, not illegally; one should acquire it peacefully, without coercion or violence; one should acquire it honestly, not by trickery or deceit; and one should acquire it in ways which do not entail harm and suffering for others.34 The Buddha mentions five specific kinds of livelihood which bring harm to others and are therefore to be avoided: dealing in weapons, in living beings (including raising animals for slaughter as well as slave trade and prostitution), in meat production and butchery, in poisons, and in intoxicants (AN 5:177). He further names several dishonest means of gaining wealth which fall under wrong livelihood: practicing deceit, treachery, soothsaying, trickery, and usury (MN 117). Obviously any occupation that requires violation of right speech and right action is a wrong form of livelihood, but other occupations, such as selling weapons or intoxicants, may not violate those factors and yet be wrong because of their consequences for others.

The Thai treatise discusses the positive aspects of right livelihood under the three convenient headings of rightness regarding actions, rightness regarding persons, and rightness regarding objects.35 "Rightness regarding actions" means that workers should fulfill their duties diligently and conscientiously, not idling away time, claiming to have worked longer hours than they did, or pocketing the company's goods. "Rightness regarding persons" means that due respect and consideration should be shown to employers, employees, colleagues, and customers. An employer, for example, should assign his workers chores according to their ability, pay them adequately, promote them when they deserve a promotion and give them occasional vacations and bonuses. Colleagues should try to cooperate rather than compete, while merchants should be equitable in their dealings with customers. "Rightness regarding objects" means that in business transactions and sales the articles to be sold should be presented truthfully. There should be no deceptive advertising, misrepresentations of quality or quantity, or dishonest manoeuvers.


So, let's take a look at bounty hunting.

1. Obviously, it is not dealing with slaves, = people who are illegally deprived of their freedom.

2. Obviously, it is not dealing with prostitutes.

3.It is not dealing with animals.

4. It is not dealig with intoxicants.

5. It is not dealing with weapons, only using them as both a protection against armed criminals and to be able to arrest armed criminals.

6. They don't violate the law by wearing arms.

7. They don't violate the law by arresting criminals, on the contrary, the State approves of them.

8. They only use coercion in a defensive manner: when peaceful means don't have a grip on people who resist the laws and their executives, police and bounty hunters.

The Laws of the State say you may not offer resistance. So when you do, somebody has to interfere, and protect the others: our Police would be wrong livelyhood, and I don't think Buddha wanted to say or teach that, mattroffact, herhe says:" only by legal means, not illegall", and the institution of Police is legal, also catching criminals the Police can't get a hold of.



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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby stuka » Wed Jan 07, 2009 12:16 pm

Looks like you have already convinced yourself of whatever it is that you want to believe. Why are you asking us jackals for our opinions, then...? :roll:
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 1:04 pm

stuka wrote:
Annabel wrote:
Ouch! That hurts ....I'm sure this is some colorful language, but what happened to right speech and to compassion? :o


It is being balanced with experience and clear-seeing.
One day, that poor attention-seeking moron will attempt to strut and showboat his way through some desperate soul's front door just long enough for them to place both barrels of a 12-gauge right on his lips and splatter his brains all over the following cameras and your television screen.


Boah...!!!


Please.


Ah, please, ...what...?

Anyhow, even though I am obviously less familiar with the series and Dog Chapman as most members here, I hear he caught a serial rapist , for which I assume a lot of victims and possible future victims and families are thankful.


You really think that wasn't staged and all set up nice and safe for him....?
I am also quite sure with this he accumulated good karma.


...yeah...sure... :roll:

I also know that the local auhtorities often can't or won't investigate and search as thouroughly as necessary,- they are often not as motivated to work as selfemployed people whose livelihood depends on success, and not on physical presence in their shift.


Sounds like a rather broad and self-serving over-generalization to me. You haven't been following the recent activities of the Denver Metro police forces lately, I can see.
I don't think there is anything wrong with catching criminals, is there?

Many jobs are dangerous.

Life will kill ya anyhow.


retreat, retreat, retreat....


It is being balanced with experience and clear-seeing.


Are you saying that wrong speech is allowed and a lack of compassion is also excused as long as you have experience and clarity of ---what exactly?

Ah, please, ...what...?


I was hoping you would understand without elaboration. Since you asked, kindly :

I hope to enjoy gentle speech and compassion and sympathy for all beings, as that is what the Tathagatha taught us... :)

It hurts me when you call Steve Irwin a moron... Do you really want to hurt me? :?
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 1:06 pm

Had to split up the message, here is the rest.

You really think that wasn't staged and all set up nice and safe for him....?


No, I didn't initially think so.

...yeah...sure... :roll:


Putting a serial rapist behind bars is good, or no? No more suffering and trauma for more daughters, sisters, wifes, and their families.

Reduction of suffering...

So, why wouldn't it generate good karma when you reduce the suffering for others?
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 1:10 pm

Sounds like a rather broad and self-serving over-generalization to me.


That self-employed people have a different attitude to work?

It is a general view, sure, because you have exceptions to the rule everywhere.

But where is it self serving? What do I gain from stating facts reality presents?

It is a fact for me, based on experience and comparison. I'm not saying employed people are not with genuine joy, interest and devotion at work, but you can (in general) multiply it for the self employed and employers because.

No work- no food. No unemployment money when there is no work.

You'd probably have to be there to know.

Back to right livelihood?
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Re: Bounty-hunters-wrong livelihood? Or a good job?

Postby Annapurna » Wed Jan 07, 2009 1:15 pm

stuka wrote:Looks like you have already convinced yourself of whatever it is that you want to believe. Why are you asking us jackals for our opinions, then...? :roll:


First of all, I'm not calling anybody a jackal here, whatever that implies, you do. Jackal....hm :?:

Then: If I were already convinced why would I start a topic and ask what others are thinking? That makes no sense.

Do I have to agree with everything that others say, even if it doesn't sit perfectly right with me yet, or can we discuss this some more when I have further thoughts?

Is that a problem, somehow?
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