Right Speech: Getting Personal

Buddhist ethical conduct including the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).
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I can see how the following comment(s) might reasonably be taken personally by someone else.

(1) "I disagree with you."
2
3%
(2) "You are incorrect."
6
8%
(3) "How could a person with the qualities you advocate ever take the position you hold to be true?"
6
8%
(4) "Here is the source of your confusion." (When you do not believe you are confused.)
7
9%
(5) "... backing away slowly ..." (followed by eye-roll emoji)
13
17%
(6) "You are too pig-headed to listen."
14
18%
(7) A post pointing out "your increasingly hysterical comments."
10
13%
(8) "You are a solipsist."
7
9%
(9) "That is your own idiosyncratic view, but the Buddha teaches ..."
7
9%
(10) "I can see how my comment may have offended you."
4
5%
 
Total votes: 76

binocular
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by binocular »

L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:02 am
Goofaholix wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:51 am
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:39 amWho is the chastiser, and who has been chastised?
There is no who that is the chastiser, there is no who that is being chastised. Without a who, there is nothing for "personal" comments to land on or cling to.
That's pretty much how I feel. I find it bizarre that people are reading "outbursts" and "prissiness" into this. The Topic was intended for a friendlier audience.
If there's no one, there's also no audience, friendly or otherwise.
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by L.N. »

In an attempt to get back on Topic.

As the poll suggests, a variety of even seemingly innocuous comments might "reasonably" be taken personally. We just don't always know how our words will be taken.

Some of the comments in the poll are not personalized comments; some are. Personalized comment "play the person, not the ball" (or, as our esteemed administrator retrofuturist prefers, "play the man, not the ball"). When we make a personalized comment, we run the risk of creating conflict. This conflict created by our words, justified or not, is worth noting. The Dhamma teaches that we are to take personal responsibility for the words we speak. The kernel of truth might be: "I spoke in a manner which came across as personal, but I did not intend to speak about your person." Or the kernel of truth might be: "I intended to speak about your person, because I intend to comment about your state of mind." But we should acknowledge the kernel of truth and take personal responsibility for it.

The following is worth quoting in full as it conveys the main points of Dhamma which I have been trying, unsuccessfully, to get across:
Reconciliation, Right & Wrong
by
Thanissaro Bhikkhu

"These two are fools. Which two? The one who doesn't see his/her transgression as a transgression, and the one who doesn't rightfully pardon another who has confessed his/her transgression. These two are fools.

"These two are wise. Which two? The one who sees his/her transgression as a transgression, and the one who rightfully pardons another who has confessed his/her transgression. These two are wise."


— AN 2.21

"It's a cause of growth in the Dhamma and Vinaya of the noble ones when, seeing a transgression as such, one makes amends in accordance with the Dhamma and exercises restraint in the future."

— DN 2

The Buddha succeeded in establishing a religion that has been a genuine force for peace and harmony, not only because of the high value he placed on these qualities but also because of the precise instructions he gave on how to achieve them through forgiveness and reconciliation. Central to these instructions is his insight that forgiveness is one thing, reconciliation is something else.

The Pali word for forgiveness-khama-also means "the earth." A mind like the earth is non-reactive and unperturbed. When you forgive me for harming you, you decide not to retaliate, to seek no revenge. You don't have to like me. You simply unburden yourself of the weight of resentment and cut the cycle of retribution that would otherwise keep us ensnarled in an ugly samsaric wrestling match. This is a gift you can give us both, totally on your own, without my having to know or understand what you've done.

Reconciliation — patisaraniya-kamma — means a return to amicability, and that requires more than forgiveness. It requires the reestablishing of trust. If I deny responsibility for my actions, or maintain that I did no wrong, there's no way we can be reconciled. Similarly, if I insist that your feelings don't matter, or that you have no right to hold me to your standards of right and wrong, you won't trust me not to hurt you again. To regain your trust, I have to show my respect for you and for our mutual standards of what is and is not acceptable behavior; to admit that I hurt you and that I was wrong to do so; and to promise to exercise restraint in the future. At the same time, you have to inspire my trust, too, in the respectful way you conduct the process of reconciliation. Only then can our friendship regain a solid footing.

Thus there are right and wrong ways of attempting reconciliation: those that skillfully meet these requirements for reestablishing trust, and those that don't. To encourage right reconciliation among his followers, the Buddha formulated detailed methods for achieving it, along with a culture of values that encourages putting those methods to use.

The methods are contained in the Pali Vinaya's instructions for how monks should confess their offenses to one another, how they should seek reconciliation with lay people they have wronged, how they should settle protracted disputes, and how a full split in the Sangha should be healed. Although directed to monks, these instructions embody principles that apply to anyone seeking reconciliation of differences, whether personal or political.

The first step in every case is an acknowledgement of wrongdoing. When a monk confesses an offense, such as having insulted another monk, he first admits to having said the insult. Then he agrees that the insult really was an offense. Finally, he promises to restrain himself from repeating the offense in the future. A monk seeking reconciliation with a lay person follows a similar pattern, with another monk, on friendly terms with the lay person, acting as mediator. If a dispute has broken the Sangha into factions that have both behaved in unseemly ways, then when the factions seek reconciliation they are advised first to clear the air in a procedure called "covering over with grass." Both sides make a blanket confession of wrongdoing and a promise not to dig up each other's minor offenses. This frees them to focus on the major wrongdoings, if any, that caused or exacerbated the dispute.

To heal a full split in the Sangha, the two sides are instructed first to inquire into the root intentions on both sides that led to the split, for if those intentions were irredeemably malicious or dishonest, reconciliation is impossible. If the group tries to patch things up without getting to the root of the split, nothing has really been healed. Only when the root intentions have been shown to be reconcilable and the differences resolved can the Sangha perform the brief ceremony that reestablishes harmony.

Pervading these instructions is the realization that genuine reconciliation cannot be based simply on the desire for harmony. It requires a mutual understanding of what actions served to create disharmony, and a promise to try to avoid those actions in the future. This in turn requires a clearly articulated agreement about — and commitment to — mutual standards of right and wrong. Even if the parties to a reconciliation agree to disagree, their agreement needs to distinguish between right and wrong ways of handling their differences.

Yet right and wrong have gotten a bad rap in Western Buddhist circles, largely because of the ways in which we have seen right and wrong abused in our own culture — as when one person tries to impose arbitrary standards or mean-spirited punishments on others, or hypocritically demands that others obey standards that he himself does not.

To avoid these abuses, some people have recommended living by a non-dual vision that transcends attachment to right and wrong. This vision, however, is open to abuse as well. In communities where it is espoused, irresponsible members can use the rhetoric of non-duality and non-attachment to excuse genuinely harmful behavior; their victims are left adrift, with no commonly accepted standards on which to base their appeals for redress. Even the act of forgiveness is suspect in such a context, for what right do the victims have to judge actions as requiring forgiveness or not? All too often, the victims are the ones held at fault for imposing their standards on others and not being able to rise above dualistic views.

This means that right and wrong have not really been transcended in such a community. They've simply been realigned: If you can claim a non-dual perspective, you're in the right no matter what you've done. If you complain about another person's behavior, you're in the wrong. And because this realignment is not openly acknowledged as such, it creates an atmosphere of hypocrisy in which genuine reconciliation is impossible.

So the solution lies not in abandoning right and wrong, but in learning how to use them wisely. Thus the Buddha backed up his methods for reconciliation with a culture of values whereby right and wrong become aids rather than hindrances to reconciliation. To prevent those in the right from abusing their position, he counseled that they reflect on themselves before they accuse another of wrongdoing. The checklist of questions he recommended boils down to this: "Am I free from unreconciled offenses of my own? Am I motivated by kindness, rather than vengeance? Am I really clear on our mutual standards?" Only if they can answer "yes" to these questions should they bring up the issue. Furthermore, the Buddha recommended that they determine to speak only words that are true, timely, gentle, to the point, and prompted by kindness. Their motivation should be compassion, solicitude for the welfare of all parties involved, and the desire to see the wrong-doer rehabilitated, together with an overriding desire to hold to fair principles of right and wrong.

To encourage a wrongdoer to see reconciliation as a winning rather than a losing proposition, the Buddha praised the honest acceptance of blame as an honorable rather than a shameful act: not just a means, but the means for progress in spiritual practice. As he told his son, Rahula, the ability to recognize one's mistakes and admit them to others is the essential factor in achieving purity in thought, word, and deed [MN 61]. Or as he said in the Dhammapada, people who recognize their own mistakes and change their ways "illumine the world like the moon when freed from a cloud" [Dhp 173].

In addition to providing these incentives for honestly admitting misbehavior, the Buddha blocked the paths to denial. Modern sociologists have identified five basic strategies that people use to avoid accepting blame when they've caused harm, and it's noteworthy that the Pali teaching on moral responsibility serves to undercut all five. The strategies are: to deny responsibility, to deny that harm was actually done, to deny the worth of the victim, to attack the accuser, and to claim that they were acting in the service of a higher cause. The Pali responses to these strategies are: (1) We are always responsible for our conscious choices. (2) We should always put ourselves in the other person's place. (3) All beings are worthy of respect. (4) We should regard those who point out our faults as if they were pointing out treasure. (Monks, in fact, are required not to show disrespect to people who criticize them, even if they don't plan to abide by the criticism.) (5) There are no — repeat, nohigher purposes that excuse breaking the basic precepts of ethical behavior.

In setting out these standards, the Buddha created a context of values that encourages both parties entering into a reconciliation to employ right speech and to engage in the honest, responsible self-reflection basic to all Dhamma practice. In this way, standards of right and wrong behavior, instead of being oppressive or petty, engender deep and long-lasting trust. In addition to creating the external harmony conducive to Dhamma practice, the process of reconciliation thus also becomes an opportunity for inner growth.

The Buddha admitted that not all disputes can be reconciled. There are times when one or both parties are unwilling to exercise the honesty and restraint that true reconciliation requires. Even then, though, forgiveness is still an option. This is why the distinction between reconciliation and forgiveness is so important. It encourages us not to settle for mere forgiveness when the genuine healing of right reconciliation is possible; and it allows us to be generous with our forgiveness even when it is not.
"Reconciliation, Right & Wrong", by Thanissaro Bhikkhu. Access to Insight (BCBS Edition), 18 July 2011, http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ation.html.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。
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Goofaholix
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by Goofaholix »

L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:02 am That's pretty much how I feel. I find it bizarre that people are reading "outbursts" and "prissiness" into this.
Clearly they are taking your comments personally then, so should you take personal responsibility for the words or would it be better if they take personal responsibility for the reactions?
“Peace is within oneself to be found in the same place as agitation and suffering. It is not found in a forest or on a hilltop, nor is it given by a teacher. Where you experience suffering, you can also find freedom from suffering. Trying to run away from suffering is actually to run toward it.” ― Ajahn Chah
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by L.N. »

binocular wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:03 amIf you want to make an argument from adherence to the Dhamma, then it should be rightfully pointed out to you that adherence to the Dhamma should come 1st, not 4th. But it's also not possible to demand of people to adhere to the Dhamma. So your point is moot.
The title of the Topic is "Right Speech." This is a forum devoted to Dhamma discussion. This Topic clearly was intended to be about the Dhamma from the starting gate.

By the way, it has come to my attention that someone from the DW Team edited the OP of the following Topic without notice to me: viewtopic.php?f=16&t=30614. I have not done a word-for-word check, so I am not sure of everything that was changed. However, this practice calls the credibility of the Forum into question. Apparently, the Team can and will go into OPs without notice and change the wording. I do not know if the OP on this Topic similarly has been altered.
Last edited by L.N. on Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by L.N. »

Goofaholix wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:14 am
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:02 am That's pretty much how I feel. I find it bizarre that people are reading "outbursts" and "prissiness" into this.
Clearly they are taking your comments personally then, so should you take personal responsibility for the words or would it be better if they take personal responsibility for the reactions?
No, we all need to take personal responsibility for the kamma we perform. Nobody is responsible for my reactions but me. Anybody who has read my other posts on this Forum will see that I have consistently advocated personal responsibility, across the board. Similarly we all (myself included) are responsible for the words we speak, whether kind or unkind. When we do something which has an unintended consequence, we all (myself included) can recognize the kernel of truth regarding our role in the situation or conflict which has arisen conditioned by our words/actions.

But nobody else is responsible for one's reactions than oneself. I always assumed this was a given. I see now that people have been hearing a different message, thus the personalized comments directed at me, I suppose.

I hope there is at least one person who has understood the point. Personalized comments are rampant here, and this would be a friendlier forum if each of us exercised a little more self-regulation, as the TOS envision. This is not an attempt at policing or controlling others. It is a reminder that we can do better. (All of us.)
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings L.N.,
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:23 am Nobody is responsible for my reactions but me. Anybody who has read my other posts on this Forum will see that I have consistently advocated personal responsibility, across the board.
Does this sense of emotional self-responsibility extend to personal reactions to the existence of topics whose subject matter is in conflict with one's own personal preferences?

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

"Why now do you assume 'a being'? Mara, have you grasped a view?" (SN 5.10)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by L.N. »

retrofuturist wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:41 amDoes this sense of emotional self-responsibility extend to personal reactions to the existence of topics whose subject matter is in conflict with one's own personal preferences?
Yes. What is your point? That Members should not speak out unless you agree with them?

Are you the person who edited the OP? I understand you can and will do whatever you want. You are responsible for your reactions, too.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings,
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:44 am Yes. What is your point? That Members should not speak out unless you agree with them?
Members (including you, including me) can say what they like, so long as they adhere to the Terms of Service.... and they won't be censored merely because their words or chosen subject matter has offended the sensibilities of any individual members (including you, including me).

My "point", as you call it, was just about the principle of taking ownership of one's own mind and reactions, applying sense restraint where relevant, and the general decorum of not making one's private emotional turmoils a public matter.
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:44 amAre you the person who edited the OP? I understand you can and will do whatever you want. You are responsible for your reactions, too.
No. I have no idea what you're talking about.

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

"Why now do you assume 'a being'? Mara, have you grasped a view?" (SN 5.10)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by L.N. »

By the way, the following is an excellent point:
retrofuturist wrote: Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:03 pmA civil society certainly values courtesy and consideration, but no person is inherently entitled to this. To the world, to society, one's feelings are absolutely insignificant and it is inflated self-indulgence to think otherwise. To ourselves and to our loved ones, feelings are valued and acknowledged, but do not in the least expect this from a complete stranger or society at large. They owe nothing to ones subjectivity. Do not expect it, and if kind consideration does occur then it is a delightful privilege, not a right.
As stated, we are all responsible for the kamma we ourselves perform. This personal responsibility has been the point from the very beginning of this Topic. A point which apparently has been missed by many here.
retrofuturist wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:51 amMembers (including you, including me) can say what they like, so long as they adhere to the Terms of Service.... and they won't be censored merely because their words or chosen subject matter has offended the sensibilities of any individual members (including you, including me).
Nobody has advocated censorship. I don't know where you got that from.
My "point", as you call it, was just about the principle of taking ownership of one's own mind and reactions, applying sense restraint where relevant, and the general decorum of not making one's private emotional turmoils a public matter.
That has been my point as well.
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:44 amAre you the person who edited the OP? I understand you can and will do whatever you want. You are responsible for your reactions, too.
No. I have no idea what you're talking about.
My mistake, It's actually the OP of the other controversial Topic I started which has been altered, not this OP. viewtopic.php?f=16&t=30614 Perhaps as the almighty administrator, you can look back and see who edited the OP in that Topic. I don't know if you or anyone else edited the OP in this topic.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings L.N.,
Nobody has advocated censorship. I don't know where you got that from.
That's funny, you were awfully insistent in a recent topic that any and all discussion and critique of Islam and Mohammad should be stopped.

Have you changed your position, and become tolerant to the existence of such discussion?

Have you come to respect the autonomy of others to decide for themselves whether participation in such topics is of net benefit?

Is your crusade now over?

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

"Why now do you assume 'a being'? Mara, have you grasped a view?" (SN 5.10)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by L.N. »

retrofuturist wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:02 amThat's funny, you were awfully insistent that any discussion and critique of Islam and Mohammad should be stopped.
Yes, I still am insistent the discussion and critique should be much more measured. You should rein in the hate speech about other faiths, especially in light of the persecution of Rohingya Muslims at the hands of self-identified Buddhists. But again, that is your business, and your kamma to perform.
Have you changed your position, and become tolerant to the existence of such discussion?
While I am open to changing my position, in this instance I have not changed any position. Rather, you have misunderstood my position from the very start.
Have you come to respect the autonomy of others to decide for themselves whether participation in such topics is of net benefit?
Have you stopped beating your wife? What kind of silly question is that. You are the one who hijacked this thread for the purpose of making personalized comments about me. I does not feel as though you have respected the autonomy of others to speak messages with which you personally disagree.
Is your crusade now over?
If you mean my efforts to discuss Dhamma in a meaningful way, no, this is not yet over.

If it hasn't dawned on you yet, you have completely missed my point. Your posts have helped to make my point regarding personalized comments. You probably still don't get it.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings L.N.,
retrofuturist wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:02 amThat's funny, you were awfully insistent that any discussion and critique of Islam and Mohammad should be stopped.
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:09 amYes, I still am insistent the discussion and critique should be much more measured. You should rein in the hate speech about other faiths, especially in light of the persecution of Rohingya Muslims at the hands of self-identified Buddhists. But again, that is your business, and your kamma to perform.
Ah, so in fact you are advocating censorship and controls, despite your "Nobody has advocated censorship. I don't know where you got that from" protests. Glad we cleared that up.
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:09 am I does not feel as though you have respected the autonomy of others to speak messages with which you personally disagree.
That's interesting.... I don't recall censoring or starting up a rally cry for the censorship of those with whom I personally disagree. I don't recall starting up a poll trying to demonize, tar, and feather those whose speech upset me. I don't remember reporting a whole swathe of posts that violated my personal feelings, but did not violate the Terms of Service.

Oh, that's right, that was you, wasn't it? :)

Don't think your double-standards and hypocrisy will get you very far with me, mate.

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

"Why now do you assume 'a being'? Mara, have you grasped a view?" (SN 5.10)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by Sam Vara »

L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:01 am It is not meant to be workable for the forum. It is meant to be workable for oneself. In other words, when one makes a personalized comment, playing the person rather than the ball, one can anticipate unexpected responses. In which case one can take personal responsibility for the words spoken. As the poll shows, different people have different ideas of what comments might reasonably be taken personally.
I didn't say "workable for the forum". I said "workable on the forum". I entirely agree that when one makes a personalised comment, playing the person, etc., one can anticipate unexpected responses. But as I didn't make a personalised comment, your point does not apply. Your entire point is based upon simply choosing your particular interpretation against the good advice of others.

The poll does not show that anyone would take the comment that I made personally. The poll does not ask whether people would take a particular statement personally, having been told by the person who made it that it was not personal. I also note that the poll does not ask whether, having taken a particular interpretation, one should repeatedly denounce the author despite their remonstration that the interpretation is wrong. Nor does the poll ask whether people think that it is possible to misinterpret someone's utterance.
The point is that it was a personalized comment
Unsupported repetition. Who allows you to judge with objectivity and finality whether comments are personal? The point is that it was a comment that you chose to interpret as being personal. Despite reassurances that it was not, and that you did not need to. And yet you maintain that you take responsibility for your actions. Why do you not take responsibility for interpreting the words of others? That interpretation is a mental act which is free in that you could have done otherwise, you could have revised that interpretation. It could have been a misinterpretation. It is this insistence on your own self-righteousness that makes your holier-than-thou routine so risible.
Last edited by Sam Vara on Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:41 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by Aloka »

L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:09 am If you mean my efforts to discuss Dhamma in a meaningful way, no, this is not yet over.

If it hasn't dawned on you yet, you have completely missed my point. Your posts have helped to make my point regarding personalized comments. You probably still don't get it.
Why keep on arguing all the time ? Let go, let go, let go!

Worth consideration......

"Monks, there is the case where some worthless men study the Dhamma: dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question & answer sessions [the earliest classifications of the Buddha's teachings]. Having studied the Dhamma, they don't ascertain the meaning (or: the purpose) of those Dhammas [5] with their discernment. Not having ascertained the meaning of those Dhammas with their discernment, they don't come to an agreement through pondering.

They study the Dhamma both for attacking others and for defending themselves in debate. They don't reach the goal for which [people] study the Dhamma. Their wrong grasp of those Dhammas will lead to their long-term harm & suffering. Why is that? Because of the wrong-graspedness of the Dhammas.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

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Re: Right Speech: Getting Personal

Post by binocular »

L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:17 amThe title of the Topic is "Right Speech." This is a forum devoted to Dhamma discussion. This Topic clearly was intended to be about the Dhamma from the starting gate.
You're forgetting who the posters here are. This isn't a debate class at a Buddhist university.

- - -
L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:12 amThe kernel of truth might be: "I spoke in a manner which came across as personal, but I did not intend to speak about your person." Or the kernel of truth might be: "I intended to speak about your person, because I intend to comment about your state of mind." But we should acknowledge the kernel of truth and take personal responsibility for it.
Some people just want to get personal.

Those who want an impersonal discussion, (can) take a debate class at a university. Or they can go to Prosblogion or a similar Buddhist site (if there is one). Those who don't want things to be so impersonal, or who believe that the way to discuss the Dhamma (or anything relevant) can only be done personally, will have a different approach to communication.

Like I said earlier, there are topics, especially in the field of morality and religion, which in their nature are such that the speaker vouches with their person for their veracity, and expects the same from others.

This approach is supported by instructions In the suttas that instruct how to test and evaluate a monk before opening up to him and in the suttas that instruct to choose one's friends wisely.

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L.N. wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:23 amIt is a reminder that we can do better. (All of us.)
People have vastly different ideas about what it means "to do better."


Edited for misplaced edit.
Last edited by binocular on Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Hic Rhodus, hic salta!
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