Is disability a result of karma?

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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Nighthawk » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:51 am

Nemo wrote:
Arjan Dirkse wrote:I certainly wouldn't interpret a disability as some kind of punishment, it's just the way we're born. A chromosome or a tiny nugget of DNA is placed in some way, causing this or that to happen in the body.


The marks and signs of a perfectly enlightened Buddha directly contradict this view. It's no more a punishment than getting the bill after a big meal. But the bill still always comes. It is your bill, not someone else's. Disability is the result of nonvirtuous action in the Buddhist cannon. This is infinitely more comforting and empowering than just saying "shit happens" and living in a nihilistic void.


It's more comforting and empowering to think of themselves being complete assholes in their past life?
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Nemo » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:18 am

Suffering that is exhaustible with root causes that can be eradicated is comforting. Random suffering for no reason is the worst form of nihilism.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Mon Oct 21, 2013 2:24 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:is it really that important that disabled people know their disability is "their fault" from a Buddhist perspective? What possible reason could one have for thinking the clarification od such a thing is important, and is it a healthy one?

There isn't.
It's just a rationale for people.
As I mentioned,
you have to define what makes something undesirable
before you can say it is the result of some negative action.

I have even heard teachers say that a person suffers because of the negative actions of their ancestors.
what nonsense.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby futerko » Mon Oct 21, 2013 2:39 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote:I have even heard teachers say that a person suffers because of the negative actions of their ancestors.
what nonsense.
.
.
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On some levels it makes sense. Many situations were created by our forebears and we too are creating a situation for our descendants that they have no personal responsibility for, but will have to take on.

On top of that is the issue of language itself and the way that shapes us, which is a trans-generational phenomenon.

...and of course, all those Edgar Allen Poe movies starring Vincent Price to boot.
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Rigdrol » Mon Oct 21, 2013 5:09 am

All conditions are a result of previous actions. That realization is enough to force oneself to practice without delay.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Simon E. » Mon Oct 21, 2013 8:08 am

Taking responsibity in the present does not imply an internal dialogue to persuade oneself of past guilt.
And it certainly does mean assuring someone else of THEIR past guilt.
Taking responsibility means finding the means to awaken.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:00 am

The only people talking about guilt and blame (in reference to karma) are those that don't believe in the workings of cause and effect. Unfortunately they are still too tied up with their Abrahamic.

Denying cause and effect leaves us with explanations based either on nihilistic notions of random effects like luck or chance (on the one hand) or notions of a divine plan (on the other hand). In Buddhism, both these options are rejected as being tenable.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Simon E. » Mon Oct 21, 2013 10:19 am

I have seen no one deny cause and effect.
What I have seen is doubt concerning the possibility of assuming a specific cause, or category of cause from apparent effects..
The Zen people tell a story that goes something like..
A man has a son who grows into a strong and energetic young man.
His father tells himself and the local Buddhist priest frequently that it must be his good karma-vipaka to have such a son.
The priest says nothing.
One day they are loading a waggon and the axle gives way and the son suffers a badly broken leg.
His father wonders to the local priest what past misdeeds he or his son must have performed to result in such bad karma-vipaka..
The priest says nothing.
Two weeks later the local warlord sends a group of soldiers into the village to forcibly conscript all the young men to fight in a particularly bloody war that he is waging against another warlord..the young man is the only one from the village who escapes this fate because he is still laid up with a broken leg.
Again the man marvels to the priest about the good karma-vipaka that he and his son must share.
'You will never learn will you ?' says the priest.
A residue of half digested Abrahamic conditioning could have the effect of reducing the subtleties of Dharma to black and white platitudes.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:46 pm

SN 35.145 PTS: S iv 132 CDB ii 1211 (corrresponds to CDB 35.146)
Kamma Sutta: Action
translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
© 1997

"Monks, I will teach you new & old kamma, the cessation of kamma, and the path of practice leading to the cessation of kamma. Listen and pay close attention. I will speak.

"Now what, monks, is old kamma? The eye is to be seen as old kamma, fabricated & willed, capable of being felt. The ear... The nose... The tongue... The body... The intellect is to be seen as old kamma, fabricated & willed, capable of being felt. This is called old kamma.

"And what is new kamma? Whatever kamma one does now with the body, with speech, or with the intellect: This is called new kamma.

"And what is the cessation of kamma? Whoever touches the release that comes from the cessation of bodily kamma, verbal kamma, & mental kamma: This is called the cessation of kamma.

"And what is the path of practice leading to the cessation of kamma? Just this noble eightfold path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. This is called the path of practice leading to the cessation of kamma.

"So, monks, I have taught you new & old kamma, the cessation of kamma, and the path of practice leading to the cessation of kamma. Whatever a teacher should do — seeking the welfare of his disciples, out of sympathy for them — that have I done for you. Over there are the roots of trees; over there, empty dwellings. Practice jhana, monks. Don't be heedless. Don't later fall into regret. This is our message to you."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Emphasis added by me.
Last edited by Sherab Dorje on Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:50 pm

MN 135 PTS: M iii 202
Cula-kammavibhanga Sutta: The Shorter Exposition of Kamma
translated from the Pali by Ñanamoli Thera
© 1994

1. Thus have I heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was living at Savatthi in Jeta's Grove, Anathapindika's Park.

Then Subha the student (brahman), Todeyya's son, went to the Blessed One and exchanged greetings with him, and when the courteous and amiable talk was finished, he sat down at one side. When he had done so, Subha the student said to the Blessed One:

2. "Master Gotama, what is the reason, what is the condition, why inferiority and superiority are met with among human beings, among mankind? For one meets with short-lived and long-lived people, sick and healthy people, ugly and beautiful people, insignificant and influential people, poor and rich people, low-born and high-born people, stupid and wise people. What is the reason, what is the condition, why superiority and inferiority are met with among human beings, among mankind?"

3. "Student, beings are owners of kammas, heirs of kammas, they have kammas as their progenitor, kammas as their kin, kammas as their homing-place. It is kammas that differentiate beings according to inferiority and superiority."


4. "I do not understand the detailed meaning of Master Gotama's utterance spoken in brief without expounding the detailed meaning. It would be good if Master Gotama taught me the Dhamma so that I might understand the detailed meaning of Master Gotama's utterance spoken in brief without expounding the detailed meaning."

"Then listen, student, and heed well what I shall say."

"Even so, Master Gotama," Subha the student replied. The Blessed One said this:
...
For the full teaching click on the link http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nymo.html

Emphasis added by me.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Simon E. » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:52 pm

IF that is a response to my post it appears to me to be complete non-sequitur.
which neither affirms, qualifies, nor refutes it.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:54 pm

Simon E. wrote:I have seen no one deny cause and effect.
I guess you are not looking too closely then:
Arjan Dirkse wrote:If that is what "the cannon" says, then the cannon can blow itself to hell. It's just wrong in this instance, stuff written over a thousand years ago by people with limited understanding of how the universe works. What you call nihilistic void is just life, if you believe it is comforting to tell someone they deserve sickness and disability, then I can go without that comfort.
You see, I am not posting here just for you Simon E. ;)
There are other people taking part in this conversation.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Simon E. » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:58 pm

I wasn't responding to any simple expressions of wholesale disbelief in the Dharma ..what is the point in that ?
The poster does not even know the difference between the canon and ' a cannon '.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:04 pm

Simon E. wrote:I wasn't responding to any simple expressions of wholesale disbelief in the Dharma ..what is the point in that ?
The poster does not even know the difference between the canon and ' a cannon '.
Ummmm... I think you will find that they do know the difference and were "taking the mickey out" of Nemo who mistakenly mispelled the term. Anyway... What exactly is your point?
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Nemo » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:16 pm

lol, I was in bed typing on my phone. But ya, the last few years I've seen more autocannons than monks. My health suffered horribly in the Army, even as a medic. But now that I am out and trying to live more virtuously it is returning. When I was young I was poor. I took responsibility for it and tried to be very generous. I am no longer poor. Karma works on so many levels. One does not realize emptiness without a great store of merit. I can't say it is only Abrahamic religions that try to shame people into thinking they are unredeemable and broken. Shame is of little help. Guilt is wonderful though. In my world guilt is the knowledge of making a mistake and being able to fix it through effort. Guilt implies both personal agency in the universe and character as being the final arbiter of Karma.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Simon E. » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:19 pm

Just what I was wondering about yours.
You have posted a chunk of a sutta which as I said, seems to me to be a non sequitur in terms of the debate at hand.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Simon E. » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:21 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
Simon E. wrote:I have seen no one deny cause and effect.
I guess you are not looking too closely then:
Arjan Dirkse wrote:If that is what "the cannon" says, then the cannon can blow itself to hell. It's just wrong in this instance, stuff written over a thousand years ago by people with limited understanding of how the universe works. What you call nihilistic void is just life, if you believe it is comforting to tell someone they deserve sickness and disability, then I can go without that comfort.
You see, I am not posting here just for you Simon E. ;)
There are other people taking part in this conversation.

Which is why I said ' IF' and said it in caps.
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:31 pm

Nemo wrote:lol, I was in bed typing on my phone. But ya, the last few years I've seen more autocannons than monks. My health suffered horribly in the Army, even as a medic. But now that I am out and trying to live more virtuously it is returning. When I was young I was poor. I took responsibility for it and tried to be very generous. I am no longer poor. Karma works on so many levels. One does not realize emptiness without a great store of merit. I can't say it is only Abrahamic religions that try to shame people into thinking they are unredeemable and broken. Shame is of little help. Guilt is wonderful though. In my world guilt is the knowledge of making a mistake and being able to fix it through effort. Guilt implies both personal agency in the universe and character as being the final arbiter of Karma.
Remorse is better than guilt.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:34 pm

Simon E. wrote:You have posted a chunk of a sutta which as I said, seems to me to be a non sequitur in terms of the debate at hand.
How is it a non-sequitur? Why does it "not follow"? Seems to me that it quite clearly "follows".
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Is disability a result of karma?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:40 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:Denying cause and effect leaves us with explanations based either on nihilistic notions of random effects like luck or chance (on the one hand) or notions of a divine plan (on the other hand). In Buddhism, both these options are rejected as being tenable.

Those are not the only two choices,
and 'denial' may not be what is going on at all.
You refer to the cause and effect of what...appearances?
Or are you asserting that some sort of 'self' exists?
.
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The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.
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