Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Whether you're exploring Buddhism for the first time or you're already on the path, feel free to ask questions of any kind here.

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Apr 11, 2012 5:15 pm

skittish wrote:
gregkavarnos wrote:Falling over is an integral part of learning to walk. Aspergers or not, we all get hurt by social encounters that have derailed.
In other words, you can, should, and will participate in Dharma according to convention. All kleshas are equivalent, so no avoiding anything. It's all empty - no excuses!
Bzzzzt... Wrong! All I am saying is that when a social encounter (like our conversation) goes awry, then regardless of whether you have Aspergers or not, you will get hurt. That's the thing with being open, it lets everything in: joyful and painful. I am not saying one should be a doormat to every sociopath out there, nor am I saying one should build walls out of fear (which is what you are advising).
Assuming you heal at all, which is often unlikely with aspies. We tend to move on, which is a shame if we lose connection with a teacher, especially our Root Teacher.
"Aspies" are not alone in doing this. Most "normal" people display this attitude and pattern of behaviour too.
gregkavarnos wrote:Who is "we" and what is "correct"?

Do we really lead with emptiness, and to a person facing these challenges? What tradition endorses that? Yikes.
What are you talking about? You make sweeping generalisations without defining categories:
Unfortunately, we're not "correct", and being too naive about our ability to comply is dangerous.
And then when asked to define them you talk gibberish?
:namaste:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 10286
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby catmoon » Thu Apr 12, 2012 7:38 am

skittish wrote: You won't see Dharma practitioners violating the limitations they "perceive" they have, such as not walking straight through traffic, teaching Dharma to their cats, or leaving their infant children home alone all day.


Ok, not bad, two out of three and all that...
Sergeant Schultz knew everything there was to know.
User avatar
catmoon
Former staff member
 
Posts: 2995
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2009 3:20 am
Location: British Columbia

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby jundo cohen » Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:09 am

Mr. G wrote:
Shutoku wrote:If you are interested in Zen, you could look into http://www.treeleaf.org
It is an online Soto sangha. They have a discussion board, and meditation sessions via webcam, and one on one's with the Roshi, a fellow called "Jundo".


This is the priest who doesn't believe in rebirth and thinks the Buddha was just some ordinary person right?


Hi All,

Thank you for maintaining this wonderful forum.

Since I was mentioned here, I thought maybe to correct that description.

I don't believe or not believe in rebirth, but choose to let rebirth be rebirth should it exist. Live as a good person now, avoiding the poisons, and rebirth ...if there is rebirth ... will take care of itself. I have seen people create very real hells for their"self" and those around them right in this life through greed, anger and ignorance without regard to any hellfires to come or not come. Anyway, we are all reborn in every instant again and again ... and in every blade of grass too.

I believe the Buddha was an ordinary chap, and that the "ordinary" is also anything but ordinary! There is also Buddha, unconditioned, beyond and through-and-through all conditions ... and including all thoughts of "miraculous or mundane!"

I think that many stories about Buddhas and Ancestors are hagiographies, exaggerated tales of idealized figures dipped in gold ... filled with superstitions and fantastic claims taken as real events. However, I know that the reality of Buddha is even more fantasticly wonderful than that!

I hope that clarifies things!

Gassho, Jundo Cohen

PS - We say in Soto Zen that a "Roshi" is some old guy who can get other people to call him "Roshi"
User avatar
jundo cohen
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 7:57 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Dechen Norbu » Thu Apr 12, 2012 3:59 pm

:roll:

Jundo,

I'm not even going to comment the sheer amount of things that disqualify you as a Buddhist, in my personal opinion, let alone as a Buddhist teacher. But that's my take, and you surely disagree.
In my opinion, you are that kind of guy who makes a living as lifeguard, all geared up and everything, in spite of not having the slightest idea about how to swim. Result? When you enter the water to save someone, both drown.
Just notice, as a friendly reminder, that this isn't ZFI. The sort of "teachings" you pass as Buddhadharma over there won't be allowed here unless in the Dharma-free-for-all subforum, opened to debate under its rules.


To all,

A fantastic meal with a drop of poison will kills you guys, not mattering how yummy it seems. Keep that in mind.
Poison in disguise is still poison. Some of Jundo's teachings and opinions are very controversial, even if very eloquent and well presented in this day and age. They are seen by many as gross corruptions of the Buddhist teachings. So, caveat emptor.
User avatar
Dechen Norbu
 
Posts: 2755
Joined: Sat Mar 26, 2011 6:50 pm

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Jikan » Thu Apr 12, 2012 4:43 pm

jundo cohen wrote:PS - We say in Soto Zen that a "Roshi" is some old guy who can get other people to call him "Roshi"


spoken in jest, or meant literally?

Althusser wrote:Pascal's formula for belief: "Pascal says more or less: 'Kneel down, move your lips in prayer, and you will believe'"
Need help getting on retreat? Want to support others in practice? Pay the Dana for Dharma forum a visit...

viewtopic.php?f=114&t=13727
Jikan
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5766
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:04 pm

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Indrajala » Thu Apr 12, 2012 5:23 pm

jundo cohen wrote:I don't believe or not believe in rebirth, but choose to let rebirth be rebirth should it exist. Live as a good person now, avoiding the poisons, and rebirth ...if there is rebirth ... will take care of itself.


This is adharma, i.e., false dharma or a wrong view that eradicates the roots of virtue and practice. Without confidence in the reality of rebirth, which is intricately tied to karma as the Buddha explained it, practices will be undertaken in vain and will not bring liberation.

Your fence sitting is your right, but if you are held by anyone to be a teacher of dharma, then your misguided views should be addressed by the community at large.
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5986
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Taiwan

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Seishin » Thu Apr 12, 2012 5:24 pm

This thread has gone WAAY out there now :alien:
User avatar
Seishin
Former staff member
 
Posts: 1468
Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 11:53 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Sherab Dorje » Thu Apr 12, 2012 5:45 pm

Yes, well, the new title of the thread is:

Finding a teacher you dislike and interacting with them. :tongue:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 10286
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Mr. G » Sun Apr 15, 2012 12:02 pm

skittish wrote:
Mr. G wrote:And please tell us what the "party lines" are that we parrot. This is a ridiculous accusation.


The "party line" is the presumption against other-emptiness, which is in fact prevalent, and thus, my statement is not ridiculous.


This was definitely not what I was thinking of when you wrote your previous comments, and I honestly do not see "anti other-emptiness" fascists on this forum.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4027
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby muni » Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:21 pm

Please, don't generalise and label the vastness of these. A Buddhist student psychology who has some problems like "Autism Spectrum" told me about the danger. She said: "when we have a flu, we say i have flu. But by for example Asperger one should say: I am an Asperger." See what happens? We become that, what is reinforcing the independent state of limitations. The label is dependent on evolution, culture, the need to give the child a name and so on, even there is lots of variation.

Watch the new DSM statestics for 2013, Asperger will even not be mentioned anymore.

May you find good guidance through your Dharma journey Angelic. :namaste:
muni
 
Posts: 3042
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:59 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby skittish » Sun Apr 15, 2012 8:08 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:All I am saying is that when a social encounter (like our conversation) goes awry, then regardless of whether you have Aspergers or not, you will get hurt. That's the thing with being open, it lets everything in: joyful and painful. I am not saying one should be a doormat to every sociopath out there, nor am I saying one should build walls out of fear (which is what you are advising).


Yes, I hear you. But I did not advise fear of either Dharma centers or Teachers (or gross paranoia, which I qualified), all of which I view as extreme advice. It may not be evident to you whether the views of many aspies are primarily the result of experience, or of some form of persecutory ideation. Theory of mind deficits are routinely conflated with delusional and/or persecutory disorders, as a great deal of AS presents with what superficially appear to be psychiatric symptoms, and behaviors or views derived from repeated interactions by those with such deficits are likewise often misinterpreted.

I hope this is a helpful clarification, for while delusional and/or persecutory disorders may in fact benefit from facing the joy (and pain) of discovering these delusions to be merely that (like all of our delusions of self), ToM deficit is never reduced, let alone transformed, simply by repeated engagement in social situations or the openness advised by convention in Dharma. If it were so, then this aspect of ASD would be easily remedied by this approach. Our naive intuition that openness benefits ToM deficit is incorrect. It does nothing to address the deficit, serving merely to perpetuate the practitioner's experience of it and generating repeated opportunities for negativity. ToM deficit has not to my knowledge been recognized as an abating deficit, and may be akin to having big feet, such that even highly realized practitioners may retain their big feet right up to the very end. Prodding those with such a deficit to pass through the doors indicated for those without such a deficit is as silly as prodding those with big feet to try to reduce their shoe size.

Doctrinally, there are justifications too for advising persons facing such challenges with what you may perceive as an extreme of caution. It would be lengthy to get into this, but as Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche said quite simply, "If we are unable to judge our own capacity, we risk taking the wrong path", and, as Dagpo Rinpoche said, "If one does not get the crucial point of the teachings, even if one practices, the Dharma itself becomes the cause for falling into the lower realms". These are critical points for practitioners facing the challenges of ASD as the ability to judge our own capacity is not at all a given depending on where we are on the spectrum. The precise level and nature of our particular deficit bears directly on what types of practices we are capable of or suited for, and may even determine whether or not our present state actually constitutes a precious human life according to the teachings. There are high-functioning autistics, and some aspies, who's ToM deficit renders them incapable of certain aspects of Dharma practice, or who's mental habits are such that even simple breath counting indicated by foundational meditation practice (in most traditions) is likely to cement, or worsen repetitive actions that function as obstacles to any progress on the path whatsoever, and this may occur on day one.

I hope I have addressed your major criticisms in a way that is beneficial to the poster.
skittish
 
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2012 6:58 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby shel » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:22 pm

Dechen Norbu wrote::roll:
Jundo,
...

Just notice, as a friendly reminder, that this isn't ZFI. The sort of "teachings" you pass as Buddhadharma over there won't be allowed here unless in the Dharma-free-for-all subforum, opened to debate under its rules.

Just a brief note. Jundo's "teachings" do not go over well even at ZFI, were he is all but banned.
shel
 
Posts: 1500
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 9:38 pm

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Wesley1982 » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:51 am

What's wrong with interacting with your teacher? Most are lucky to find one or be near the location of a zendo.
User avatar
Wesley1982
 
Posts: 739
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:45 pm
Location: Magga ~ Path to Liberation.

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:01 am

skittish wrote:
gregkavarnos wrote:All I am saying is that when a social encounter (like our conversation) goes awry, then regardless of whether you have Aspergers or not, you will get hurt. That's the thing with being open, it lets everything in: joyful and painful. I am not saying one should be a doormat to every sociopath out there, nor am I saying one should build walls out of fear (which is what you are advising).


Yes, I hear you. But I did not advise fear of either Dharma centers or Teachers (or gross paranoia, which I qualified), all of which I view as extreme advice. It may not be evident to you whether the views of many aspies are primarily the result of experience, or of some form of persecutory ideation. Theory of mind deficits are routinely conflated with delusional and/or persecutory disorders, as a great deal of AS presents with what superficially appear to be psychiatric symptoms, and behaviors or views derived from repeated interactions by those with such deficits are likewise often misinterpreted.

I hope this is a helpful clarification, for while delusional and/or persecutory disorders may in fact benefit from facing the joy (and pain) of discovering these delusions to be merely that (like all of our delusions of self), ToM deficit is never reduced, let alone transformed, simply by repeated engagement in social situations or the openness advised by convention in Dharma. If it were so, then this aspect of ASD would be easily remedied by this approach. Our naive intuition that openness benefits ToM deficit is incorrect. It does nothing to address the deficit, serving merely to perpetuate the practitioner's experience of it and generating repeated opportunities for negativity. ToM deficit has not to my knowledge been recognized as an abating deficit, and may be akin to having big feet, such that even highly realized practitioners may retain their big feet right up to the very end. Prodding those with such a deficit to pass through the doors indicated for those without such a deficit is as silly as prodding those with big feet to try to reduce their shoe size.

Doctrinally, there are justifications too for advising persons facing such challenges with what you may perceive as an extreme of caution. It would be lengthy to get into this, but as Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche said quite simply, "If we are unable to judge our own capacity, we risk taking the wrong path", and, as Dagpo Rinpoche said, "If one does not get the crucial point of the teachings, even if one practices, the Dharma itself becomes the cause for falling into the lower realms". These are critical points for practitioners facing the challenges of ASD as the ability to judge our own capacity is not at all a given depending on where we are on the spectrum. The precise level and nature of our particular deficit bears directly on what types of practices we are capable of or suited for, and may even determine whether or not our present state actually constitutes a precious human life according to the teachings. There are high-functioning autistics, and some aspies, who's ToM deficit renders them incapable of certain aspects of Dharma practice, or who's mental habits are such that even simple breath counting indicated by foundational meditation practice (in most traditions) is likely to cement, or worsen repetitive actions that function as obstacles to any progress on the path whatsoever, and this may occur on day one.

I hope I have addressed your major criticisms in a way that is beneficial to the poster.
I think you are just making excuses for your attitude and using Aspergers to justify it. That's what I can gather from your posts thus far.

Gotta be careful with the sense of self, it'll use anything to fortify the delusive experience of its existence.
:namaste:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 10286
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby muni » Mon Apr 16, 2012 11:16 am

All beings seek warmth, comfort, fellows who understand us, and we all have our limitations. The problem is that we do not listen enough to each other but expect all are like us. We feel to have distance since we cannot understand each other. Then people land for protection by those-like-us and build walls around "us" and "they". These cocoons are locking us in "here I belong too". In some way these are helping and give some temporary consolation, but not understanding- "others" are kept out. The samenesses in the group we maximize and the differences with "others" as well.
This is a habit of humans, like my friends and my enenies as well. Always those walls!!!

A saying: " we are all diamonds, perfect, even of different shapes". In this way walls aren't.

Talking over the internet is not so easy, still sure some good contacts can bring one by careful guidance without locking one up in "me and those where I belong". Keep the possibilities open.

We should stop to categorize people and put all in labeled boxes. Our nature is already enough hidden in our cocooning ideas.

Just two cents.
muni
 
Posts: 3042
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:59 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby undefineable » Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:16 pm

Lhasa wrote:Aspies are already nondual, I suggest you start there. A nondual teacher will see that in you, and will see that as an asset, not a problem.


Yes - No Other; only Self. Hence the term 'autism'. {Reminds me of a sectarian Indian yogi's online assertion that many of the mahahamsas (gurus) of Advaita Vedanta were autistic!}

Thinking about your second sentence reminds us that every so-called obstacle can be used as an asset on the path - We can potentially up-end the fictional Irishman's answer to the question "what's the best way to get to Dublin?"

However, 'nonduality' in Buddhism typically refers to a stage in which the mind's Self/Other and Space/Object distinctions such as may be present (the same thing when your sense of Self is very spacey!) is seen through. See: http://buddhism.multiply.com/journal/it ... on-dualism

skittish wrote:The "party line" is the presumption against other-emptiness, which is in fact prevalent, and thus, my statement is not ridiculous. The line goes something like: Everything's empty, including ALL kleshas and perceived limitations. Therefore, relinquish acceptance and rejection and don't be cynical, bring it all on.
This is careless, rubbish advice for an aspy, especially one just entering the Dharma, regardless of the yana.


I'm an "aspy" who'se progressed in Dharma at a very leisurely pace, but I sense that I have enough renunciation to drop as demonstrably useless my natural interest in gaining and maintaining any particular identity. As such, I no longer need to approach the world as women choose lovers, since anyone I "welcome into (my) inner space" would be excluded automatically if their thoughts cease being relevant to my journey.

Having said that, dharma teachings (i.e. advice, as that is all they tend to be) are ofcourse best given 1:1, taking the practitioner's individual circumstances into account. 'Correctness' in dharma practice is meant to be individualised rather than generalised in Buddhism; I hope this assertion is recognised as being too ubiquitous to need referencing - The term 'mahasiddha' should be enough to demonstrate Buddhism's uneasy relationship with convention.

I don't see the relevance of "other-emptiness" by the way-?
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
undefineable
 
Posts: 500
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Infinite » Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:14 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:Yes, well, the new title of the thread is:

Finding a teacher you dislike and interacting with them. :tongue:

I am intrigued by this technique and wish to know more. How does one go about finding someone they hate and trying to learn from them? It sounds like a lot of fun. :meditate: :applause:
Infinite
 
Posts: 66
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 12:20 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby skittish » Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:57 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:I think you are just making excuses for your attitude and using Aspergers to justify it. That's what I can gather from your posts thus far.


That is the common perception.

gregkavarnos wrote:Gotta be careful with the sense of self, it'll use anything to fortify the delusive experience of its existence.
:namaste:


People might say the same about color blindness, astigmatism, etc. ToM deficit, or mind-blindess, is similar in that it won't cease being a deficit simply via repeated social interaction. You can choose not to believe that if you like, but there's plenty of diagnostics out there which supports this. This is not to say that other remedies for dealing with it are not available to us, just that the particular notion of forcing people with the deficit to behave and interact as if they don't have it is not credible.
skittish
 
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2012 6:58 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby skittish » Mon Apr 16, 2012 11:17 pm

undefineable wrote:
skittish wrote:The "party line" is the presumption against other-emptiness, which is in fact prevalent, and thus, my statement is not ridiculous. The line goes something like: Everything's empty, including ALL kleshas and perceived limitations. Therefore, relinquish acceptance and rejection and don't be cynical, bring it all on.
This is careless, rubbish advice for an aspy, especially one just entering the Dharma, regardless of the yana.


I'm an "aspy" who'se progressed in Dharma at a very leisurely pace, but I sense that I have enough renunciation to drop as demonstrably useless my natural interest in gaining and maintaining any particular identity. As such, I no longer need to approach the world as women choose lovers, since anyone I "welcome into (my) inner space" would be excluded automatically if their thoughts cease being relevant to my journey.

Having said that, dharma teachings (i.e. advice, as that is all they tend to be) are ofcourse best given 1:1, taking the practitioner's individual circumstances into account. 'Correctness' in dharma practice is meant to be individualised rather than generalised in Buddhism; I hope this assertion is recognised as being too ubiquitous to need referencing - The term 'mahasiddha' should be enough to demonstrate Buddhism's uneasy relationship with convention.


That there is increasing intolerance toward consideration of individual circumstances such as AS, ToM deficit, whatever, is the point. I have witnessed some severe reactions too from spouses of those with AS, who find it unbearable to see their practitioner-others corralled by cookie-cutter social/behavioral expectations.

In my experience exclusion of the irrelevant is precisely what an asperger is likely to default to over time anyway, and hence, it's best to begin this way to avoid both negativity and the tendency to overestimate our capacities and push ourselves into boats we ought not have bought. I understand this is not received by most as an approach that is conducive to growth, but then the common perception is that ToM deficit will dissolve via practice, which is largely folly, and very unkind advice for those about to begin.

undefineable wrote:I don't see the relevance of "other-emptiness" by the way-?
Not highly relevant unless one is interested in the philosophical underpinnings of the tendency to produce cookie-cutter models, nihilism, or the like.
skittish
 
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2012 6:58 am

Re: Finding a teacher when you dislike interaction

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:43 am

skittish wrote:
gregkavarnos wrote:I think you are just making excuses for your attitude and using Aspergers to justify it. That's what I can gather from your posts thus far.


That is the common perception.
It's not a common perception. I am not getting this feeling from what AngelicFruitcake and undefinable are saying at all.
People might say the same about color blindness, astigmatism, etc. ToM deficit, or mind-blindess, is similar in that it won't cease being a deficit simply via repeated social interaction.
Nobody here said anything of the sort. This is called a straw man.

You see, the more you post the more it becomes apparent that a portion of what you ascribe to your "condition" is merely a personality trait that you personally possess. A part of your personality that can be found in people without your "condition". Personality traits that can be overcome with the practice of Dharma (ie by minimizing your investment in the trait as part of a perceived immutable whole or "self").
:namaste:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 10286
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

PreviousNext

Return to Exploring Buddhism

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 10 guests

>