Mudita

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
mabw
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Mudita

Post by mabw »

Greetings,

What has, in your experience, been most effective in cultivating sympathetic joy and reducing jealousy?


Thank you in advance.
Alino
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Re: Mudita

Post by Alino »

Letting go of desires and attachments.
We don't live Samsara, Samsara is living us...

"Form, feelings, perceptions, formations, consciousness - don't care about us, we don't exist for them"
JohnK
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Re: Mudita

Post by JohnK »

mabw wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 2:54 pm Greetings,

What has, in your experience, been most effective in cultivating sympathetic joy and reducing jealousy?


Thank you in advance.
As I think Alino's reply also suggests, it is hard to point to one specific practice. I'm not especially jealous, but it's hard to know specifically what practice or experiences led to that, so to answer, I have to speculate a bit.
Extensive metta practice supports goodwill; when sincere goodwill sees others' successes, the mind is glad.
What we are typically jealous of are worldly acquisitions/successes; believing/knowing that these things do not lead to true happiness makes them less relevant or worthy of our attention (these people we are jealous of are still stuck with their dukkha -- we are on a different path).
Having some taste of a deep contentment that is apart from worldly acquisitions/successes also helps to put these worldly things in perspective.
So for me, I can speculate that retreats and sutta study have been the most effective -- and also just seeing that people who have lots of stuff are not necessarily happy!
Those who grasp at perceptions & views wander the internet creating friction. [based on Sn4:9,v.847]
SarathW
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Re: Mudita

Post by SarathW »

I think Muditha is a result of seen the interconnected was and not seen someone’s success as a benefit rather than a threat.
Can the West appreciate the success of China when they see that as a threat and vice versa.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”
asahi
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Re: Mudita

Post by asahi »

Perhaps Joy can be obtained by simply having feeling of affection to other people or sharing other person happiness or accomplishment .

SarathW wrote: Sun May 09, 2021 1:18 am I think Muditha is a result of seen the interconnected was and not seen someone’s success as a benefit rather than a threat.
Can the West appreciate the success of China when they see that as a threat and vice versa.
Feeling of threat or not safe seems to be coming from having a body and hence the i . The majority of west or the east never listen to the dhamma , i wonder how are they going to free from fears .
SarathW
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Re: Mudita

Post by SarathW »

How can we have Mudita when someone have a lagge chest of war?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”
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Dhamma Chameleon
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Re: Mudita

Post by Dhamma Chameleon »

SarathW wrote: Sun May 09, 2021 3:26 am How can we have Mudita when someone have a lagge chest of war?
Mudita is the wrong Brahmavihara in this case; criminal and reprehensible behaviour requires upekkha, equanimity.

When jealousy arises I find it helpful to remember that someone's gain isn't my loss. Cultivating an attitude of enough for everyone and counting your blessings, whatever they are. Like coming across dhamma in this lifetime and having the opportunity to practice.
SarathW
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Re: Mudita

Post by SarathW »

Dhamma Chameleon wrote: Sun May 09, 2021 10:06 am
SarathW wrote: Sun May 09, 2021 3:26 am How can we have Mudita when someone have a lagge chest of war?
Mudita is the wrong Brahmavihara in this case; criminal and reprehensible behaviour requires upekkha, equanimity.

When jealousy arises I find it helpful to remember that someone's gain isn't my loss. Cultivating an attitude of enough for everyone and counting your blessings, whatever they are. Like coming across dhamma in this lifetime and having the opportunity to practice.
:goodpost:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”
mabw
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Re: Mudita

Post by mabw »

JohnK wrote: Sat May 08, 2021 2:30 pm
What we are typically jealous of are worldly acquisitions/successes; believing/knowing that these things do not lead to true happiness makes them less relevant or worthy of our attention (these people we are jealous of are still stuck with their dukkha -- we are on a different path).
Having some taste of a deep contentment that is apart from worldly acquisitions/successes also helps to put these worldly things in perspective.
So for me, I can speculate that retreats and sutta study have been the most effective -- and also just seeing that people who have lots of stuff are not necessarily happy!
While this is true, and I sometimes hear Buddhists coming from this angle, this does not sound very sincere to me. It's like "I know the right answer and you don't", "you're unhappy and you don't even know it". Sounds rather conceited, don't you think.
JohnK
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Re: Mudita

Post by JohnK »

mabw wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:52 am
JohnK wrote: Sat May 08, 2021 2:30 pm
What we are typically jealous of are worldly acquisitions/successes; believing/knowing that these things do not lead to true happiness makes them less relevant or worthy of our attention (these people we are jealous of are still stuck with their dukkha -- we are on a different path).
Having some taste of a deep contentment that is apart from worldly acquisitions/successes also helps to put these worldly things in perspective.
So for me, I can speculate that retreats and sutta study have been the most effective -- and also just seeing that people who have lots of stuff are not necessarily happy!
While this is true, and I sometimes hear Buddhists coming from this angle, this does not sound very sincere to me. It's like "I know the right answer and you don't", "you're unhappy and you don't even know it". Sounds rather conceited, don't you think.
Hello, mabw.
You originally asked about personal experience and I tried to answer you sincerely (though perhaps better in the personal experience section).
Immediately above, you begin with "...this is true," but then say it does not sound "sincere;" -- so I'm not sure what you mean there. The Buddha said that his teaching goes against the stream, so I think that does suggest a knowing a right way that others don't. Also, I certainly did not say "you're unhappy and you don't even know it" -- I think many people who acquire a lot of stuff and worldly success know they are not truly happy. So, I guess I am concluding, again attempting a sincere answer to your question, that no, i don't think what I'm saying sounds rather conceited.
By the way, the Buddha actually did say that many people are unhappy and don't know it -- if you are not familiar, check out the sutta about the leper (MN75).
https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/MN/MN75.html
I think Bhikkhu Bodhi, in a series of lectures on the MN suttas, said that if he started with this one, people would stop showing up -- they really don't want to hear it.
:anjali:
Edit: In case there was a miscommunication, I did not intend to imply that people were not worthy of attention, but that worldly acquisition is not so worthy of the attention we often give to it.
Those who grasp at perceptions & views wander the internet creating friction. [based on Sn4:9,v.847]
justindesilva
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Re: Mudita

Post by justindesilva »

mabw wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 2:54 pm Greetings,

What has, in your experience, been most effective in cultivating sympathetic joy and reducing jealousy?


Thank you in advance.
Mudita is a wholesome mental factor leading to nibbana. Mudita leads to upekka which is not a mental factor but a state of brahma vihara. Mudita is also joy of sympathy arising out of success and wellbeing and success of others, this others is beyond ones near and dear.
With reference to the post , a clear example of mudita could be that of a teacher. As an example if the teacher conducts a class that includes its own child, & when his own child fails wheras another child is successful, the joy arising can be classed as mudita.This joy void of anger or jealousy (issha) leading to equanimity.
The same could be expressed when in a community of sangha, just when one achieves marga pala, the joy arising with others could be mudita.
Mudita is a mind state, that has to be developed with virya ( effort) against loba, dosa, moha. Mudita is included in samma ajiva of arya ashtanga marga.
mabw
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Re: Mudita

Post by mabw »

JohnK wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:43 am What we are typically jealous of are worldly acquisitions/successes; believing/knowing that these things do not lead to true happiness makes them less relevant or worthy of our attention (these people we are jealous of are still stuck with their dukkha -- we are on a different path).
I meant no disrespect. My thoughts ran this way,

True- Worldly successes do not in themselves lead to true happiness
Conceited- these people we are jealous of are still stuck with their dukkha -- we are on a different path
JohnK wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:43 am The Buddha said that his teaching goes against the stream, so I think that does suggest a knowing a right way that others don't
Possibly. But to take this as a basis to console us sounds a little conceited. Hence, me saying this sounds like "I know the right answer and you don't", "you're unhappy and you don't even know it".
JohnK wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:43 am I did not intend to imply that people were not worthy of attention, but that worldly acquisition is not so worthy of the attention we often give
Okay, well, to refine my question, the jealousy I am referring to can also include jealousy one feels over the progress another makes spiritually, or maybe how one's life seems to be a constant struggle while another seems to be smooth-sailing etc.
JohnK
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Re: Mudita

Post by JohnK »

mabw wrote: Tue May 11, 2021 2:27 pm True- Worldly successes do not in themselves lead to true happiness
Conceited- these people we are jealous of are still stuck with their dukkha -- we are on a different path
We can agree to disagree on the conceited part of this. I did not say we are free of our dukkha, just that the Buddha has offered us a different path to a more reliable happiness. You asked how not to be jealous, and I offered this perspective. What you are calling conceit might alternatively be called faith or a framework that inspires practice.
mabw wrote: Tue May 11, 2021 2:27 pm
JohnK wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:43 am The Buddha said that his teaching goes against the stream, so I think that does suggest a knowing a right way that others don't
Possibly. But to take this as a basis to console us sounds a little conceited.
I did not think consoling was the topic here.
mabw wrote: Tue May 11, 2021 2:27 pm Okay, well, to refine my question, the jealousy I am referring to can also include jealousy one feels over the progress another makes spiritually, or maybe how one's life seems to be a constant struggle while another seems to be smooth-sailing etc.
Again, I think such jealousy can motivate practice.
Seeing one's own suffering (both the constant struggle and the suffering of jealousy itself) is a part of the path. Understanding dukkha is the task associated with the First Noble Truth -- you have to see it to come to understand it.

By the way, "conceit" has a rather technical meaning in the suttas -- comparing oneself to others -- it is one of the final fetters to be broken. I think you have been using "conceit" in the more vernacular way ("I'm better than you"). In the suttas, conceit can be any type of comparing, that is, I'm better, worse, or even the same. So, jealousy is in fact a form of conceit (comparing) as the term is used in the suttas -- interesting. It is perhaps consoling to know that conceit (including jealousy) is among the final fetters, broken only by the most accomplished.
There is a sutta that notes the possibility of using conceit to put an end to conceit; using jealousy to put an end to jealousy -- basically, along the lines of: "If so-and-so can make progress, I will too." I'll see if I can find the sutta.

Good luck with all this. As I said in my first reply, I think retreats and sutta study have been helpful for me in this regard.
Those who grasp at perceptions & views wander the internet creating friction. [based on Sn4:9,v.847]
mabw
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Re: Mudita

Post by mabw »

JohnK wrote: Tue May 11, 2021 4:49 pm
There is a sutta that notes the possibility of using conceit to put an end to conceit; using jealousy to put an end to jealousy -- basically, along the lines of: "If so-and-so can make progress, I will too." I'll see if I can find the sutta.
A considered response. Thank you. Yes, please post a link to the sutta should you be able to find it.

I was using conceit to mean pride, which seems to tie in to the definition you gave , in a sense anyway. Since conceit is when one thinks one is superior, equal or inferior to another, the context of my reply was with regards to the first.
JohnK
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Re: Mudita

Post by JohnK »

mabw wrote: Tue May 11, 2021 5:05 pm ... please post a link to the sutta should you be able to find it.
https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/AN/AN4_159.html
A portion:
“‘This body comes into being through conceit. And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.’ Thus it was said. And in reference to what was it said? There is the case, sister, where a monk hears, ‘The monk named such-&-such, they say, through the ending of the effluents, has entered & remains in the effluent-free awareness-release & discernment-release, having directly known & realized them for himself right in the here & now.’ The thought occurs to him, ‘The monk named such-&-such, they say, through the ending of the effluents, has entered & remains in the effluent-free awareness-release & discernment-release, having directly known & realized them for himself right in the here & now. Then why not me?’ Then, at a later time, he abandons conceit, having relied on conceit. ‘This body comes into being through conceit. And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.’ Thus it was said, and in reference to this was it said.
Those who grasp at perceptions & views wander the internet creating friction. [based on Sn4:9,v.847]
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