Dan74 wrote: ↑Sun Sep 13, 2020 2:33 pm
Yes, the issue is whether monks should involve themselves in these matters, not the merits of particular causes. From all that I've seen, monks who involve themselves in social justice, believe their causes to be just and noble, believe the facts to be on their side and the merit of this belief is somewhat outside this topic, I think.
Whether monks should support conservative causes like our own Bhante Dhammanando who posts about such matters on FB, or Paññobhāsa Bhikkhu, who aligns himself with the far-right and consorts with neo-Nazis, or indeed the monks mentioned here, who align with liberal and progressive causes, it is basically the same issue - should they involve themselves in politics, social justice or other "worldly" issues?
The merits of the said causes is a separate matter, I think.
They are two separate points, but both relevant. Why? Because it's important to be judicious when determining what is praiseworthy and blameworthy...
Avaṇṇāraha Suttaṃ wrote:“Endowed with four things, monks, one arises in hell as surely as if taken and put there. What four? Without having properly investigated and examined one speaks in praise of the blameworthy, without having properly investigated (ananuvicca) and examined (pariyogahetvā) one speaks in dispraise of the praiseworthy, without having properly investigated and examined one shows satisfaction (pasādaṃ) in a matter that does not inspire confidence, without having properly investigated and examined one shows dissatisfaction (appasādaṃ) in a matter that inspires confidence. Endowed with these four things, monks, one arises in hell as surely as if taken and put there.
“Endowed with four things, monks, one arises in heaven as surely as if taken and put there. What four? Having properly investigated and examined one speaks in dispraise of the blameworthy, having properly investigated and examined one speaks in praise of the praiseworthy, having properly investigated and examined one shows dissatisfaction in a matter that does not inspire confidence, having properly investigated and examined one shows satisfaction in a matter that inspires confidence. Endowed with these four things, monks, one arises in heaven as surely as if taken and put there."
Yet, even if one is satisfied that they have "properly investigated" at a certain point in time... they need to keep being across something indefinitely, if they are going to maintain that position of praise and blame indefinitely.
Dvayatanupasssana Sutta of the Sutta Nipata wrote:Just see a world with all its gods
Fancying a self where none exists
Entering into name and form
It builds the fancy - 'Ah! This is the truth'!
In whatever way one fancies of a thing
Thereby itself it turns otherwise
And that itself is the falsity in it
Falsifying by nature - the puny thing
But nibbana unfalsifying as it is
Noble Ones knew as the truth
And they by their understanding of the truth
Are hungerless and fully appeased.
Throughout the duration of this topic alone, we've seen the "public facts" on certain things change: Black Lives Matter, studies on the efficacy or otherwise of hydroxychloroquine, the circumstances surrounding the George Floyd incident etc. Some of these things literally change daily.
In contrast, since the Dhamma is timeless, such continual investigation and re-investigation is not required... nor the time commitment to doing and redoing it. Hence, why I think monastics with a penchant for "protesting social justice" should focus more on the Dhamma than worldly affairs, and hence my earlier question (now removed due to complaints about the presentation of evidence, pertinent to the application of the Avaṇṇāraha Sutta) about whether Ajahn Amaro still
endorses Black Lives Matter, even now