Human Nature, Politics, and Culture

Anything goes (almost).

Re: Dzogchen, Buddhism and culture

Postby Anders » Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:47 pm

Malcolm wrote:
username wrote:So lets appreciate what we have inherited as civil rights and democracy which is not guaranteed to last forever.


Amen.


x2.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
User avatar
Anders
 
Posts: 783
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:39 pm

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:53 pm

Malcolm wrote:
kirtu wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Then you have healthcare.


No - most veterans who served in the late/final Cold War period do not have veteran's benefits (more correctly they don't have war era veteran's benefits) 1975/77 - 1991/2. I served in the middle of that period. I don't have healthcare benefits. I can't even claim the 5 pt federal preference on federal job applications (or couldn't while I was working in the federal government as a civilian - some generals and admirals have spoken out about this issue over the past 18 yrs).

Kirt



I see, well it seems likely that the Supreme Court will toss out Obama/Romney care, and then they will have a chance to do it right with Single Payer.


But Malcolm - this is the kind of indirectness and abandonment of logical thought that is a real problem in discussions. My point on health care is that the US does not have a health care system (not a universal health care system). So while President Obama's system is also not a universal health care system, Single Payer is certainly not a legitimate option, other than for powerful or greedy people who simply want to exploit others. It's this kind of thinking that we should reduce and not encourage. The US has not always taken an extreme "you are on your own" approach but it seems that it has been moving towards that extreme view since at least the 1st Great Depression (because homeless people and poor people were significnatly maltreated in that period).

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Dzogchen, Buddhism and culture

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:57 pm

Anders wrote:
username wrote:Old Plato's discourse might have been well intended but he was not as wise as Socrates and the logical conclusion of his ideas would be not far off George Orwell's 1984 given enough time since inevitably power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. So lets appreciate what we have inherited as civil rights and democracy which is not guaranteed to last forever.


Malcolm got it right when he termed the Republic 'the original fascist nightmare'.

If you actually read what he says without making apologies for him it's a dreadful vision of what society should be like.

Historically, it's also been given little attention. For 2000 years, no one bothered to read this work. It was Aristotle people quoted if they went to the ancient Greeks for political opinion. One of my own professors even went as far as saying, Plato didn't even take it very seriously himself. It was basically just a bit of Utopian fantasy.

It was only with the advent of romanticism it came in vogue again. Who admitted to admiring the work? Rousseau, who directly inspired the likes of Robespierre, Napoleon, Hitler and Stalin. Mussolini as well, though he took more direct inspiration from Plato's Republic.


Malcolm's pithy summary of Plato's bestseller is spot-on indeed, but I'm afraid it wasn't romanticism that made Platonic utopias fashionable again. (And, at any rate, romantic utopias are a very far cry from Plato's insanity.) The genre burgeoned in the horrid 17th century, producing such blood-curdling gems as Campanella's City of the Sun, More's Utopia - or Bacon's New Atlantis. Still not for the faint-hearted, especially the first two of them.
. . . there they saw a rock! But it wasn't a rock . . .
User avatar
treehuggingoctopus
 
Posts: 639
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 6:26 pm
Location: Mudhole? Slimy? My home, this is.

Re: Dzogchen, Buddhism and culture

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:11 pm

Sönam wrote:
kirtu wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Just an observation, but this thread seems to have seriously veered off course, but since it was a thread created out of another thread, may be this is normal...


I'm still asking what if anything beyond science, mathematics and engineering needs to be preserved in western culture. Is there a there there? Sally and username are discussing Marx from the starting point of Marx's criticism of capitalism.

Cultures arose historically mostly from little groups with mutual language comprehensibility or religious cohesion interacting. This is all embeded in a samsaric context and Tibetan culture is no different at lest on the secular level.

Why do we need to preserve cultures? The majority of cultures that have ever existed on the planet are gone as distinct, labelable entities. Cultures are identities that people attach to. Do cultures serve any real purpose for humans?

Kirt


so your reasonning should also be valid for Tibetan culture ... for human culture in general.


It does apply to Tibetan culture as well. Tibetan culture itself is samsaric. So when Namhkai Norbu said, in effect, "I love my culture, I have to preserve my culture" - the question is why? Why preserve samsaric culture? Sally suggests in a post that we need to preserve culture for the Mahayana purpose of using poison, in this case the artifacts of the culture, in order lead people to enlightenment.

Culture is the manifestation of human creativity, it is generaly made out of love, gratuitousnesss, energy, utopia and many other positive criteria.


Culture mostly reflects aggression, power domination, and the organization of people into different strata with different expectations and values. Culture is not composed primarily of the positive attributes you list. As an example in the US we see very few positive responses to the 2nd Great Depression and those we see are ignored or even physically attacked by city governments. We see something similar in the UK and Greece.

Umberto Eco proposed the classic Christian monastery from the Middle Ages as a kind of utopia that worked at least in some cases. The culture of these monasteries has been overlooked in the west as a model.

Culture is the trace of a universal behavior and what generally goes wrong is the exploitation of it by those who hijack it to obtain an immediat personnal advantage.


I'm not sure there is a universal behavior beyond eating, sleeping, eliminating, and sex for the individual. For societies there is language and customs but they are not universal. Personal gain, a fruit of the poisons, is also universal but not all people act on personal gain as a motivation.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:25 pm

kirtu wrote:
But Malcolm - this is the kind of indirectness and abandonment of logical thought that is a real problem in discussions. My point on health care is that the US does not have a health care system (not a universal health care system). So while President Obama's system is also not a universal health care system, Single Payer is certainly not a legitimate option, other than for powerful or greedy people who simply want to exploit others. It's this kind of thinking that we should reduce and not encourage. The US has not always taken an extreme "you are on your own" approach but it seems that it has been moving towards that extreme view since at least the 1st Great Depression (because homeless people and poor people were significnatly maltreated in that period).

Kirt


Single Payer = Universal Health Care in my lexicon i.e. healthcare as a basic human right, a base level of which should be gauranteed by the government, just as the government guarantees education as a basic human right.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 12745
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:28 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Virgo wrote:
Malcolm wrote:[
You have to realize that Kirt is basically a Monarchist.

M

Really? I am surprised

Kevin


Yes, he buys into the idea of enlightened rulers.


Well once you said this I basically have to agree with this. But it's more like a kind of anarchic, fluid leadership led by enlightened people. The problem with degrees of enlightenment is that no one is omniscient and therefore different leadership (or leadership activity) is needed for different problems. The advantage with enlightened leaders is that moral problems will be reduced particularly in a democratic system (although Goedel's Law guarantees that not all moral problems will be eliminated because all complex axiomatic systems have true statements that can only be proven using higher order axioms).

Of course at the end of the day that is just Plato's Repulic redux, the original fascist nightmare.


Not at all. Murder, genocide, taking everyone > 10 out into a field and killing them, etc. isn't right action. Fascism is a cultural phenomenon that should clearly be eliminated as an option.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:38 pm

Malcolm wrote:
kirtu wrote:
But Malcolm - this is the kind of indirectness and abandonment of logical thought that is a real problem in discussions. My point on health care is that the US does not have a health care system (not a universal health care system). So while President Obama's system is also not a universal health care system, Single Payer is certainly not a legitimate option, other than for powerful or greedy people who simply want to exploit others. It's this kind of thinking that we should reduce and not encourage. The US has not always taken an extreme "you are on your own" approach but it seems that it has been moving towards that extreme view since at least the 1st Great Depression (because homeless people and poor people were significnatly maltreated in that period).

Kirt


Single Payer = Universal Health Care in my lexicon i.e. healthcare as a basic human right, a base level of which should be gauranteed by the government, just as the government guarantees education as a basic human right.


Sorry, you are correct. The whole US discussion around health care is just bizarre to me and so I get my terminology wrong at times. It's bizarre because it's counterfactual and I also grew up in a "socialist" health care system in the US: the US military dependant health care system called CHAMPUS which was killed off in the 80's or 90's and replaced with TriCare.

Unfortunately overturing Obamas's healthcare proposal or Romney's implementation of healthcare is not guaranteed to move the US to a single payer system. Culturally US people really do believe that the principle that "you are on your own" is correct. Therefore most Republicans and many Democrats (almost all of whom are merely liberal Republicans anyway) agree with this point of view.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 04, 2012 5:56 pm

kirtu wrote:
Unfortunately overturing Obamas's healthcare proposal or Romney's implementation of healthcare is not guaranteed to move the US to a single payer system. Culturally US people really do believe that the principle that "you are on your own" is correct. Therefore most Republicans and many Democrats (almost all of whom are merely liberal Republicans anyway) agree with this point of view.

Kirt


AFAIC am concerned, that is better than mandated insurance coverage which I regard as a violation of my rights to choose and as something than makes Govt, interference in our lives all the more pervasive since it is tied to our income taxes.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 12745
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Human Nature, Politics, and Culture

Postby Sönam » Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:38 pm

mutualized french healthcare system is one of the best ... first there is a right "for all" to have access to treatment "universal healthcare" (CMU), a free health care for people on low incomes. Those wo can pay are generally charged on a base of 20% but then you can always found arrangments (not to pay) if necessary, and for a low cost you can have a complementary insurance so you will be 100%. Then if I look to my case, all medications and treatements, including all (examinationsalso very expensive ones, stay in hospital, etc.), are 100% free when your disease has to be cured for the rest of your live (heart and lungs in my case).

I was in the states when Clinton was elected, and everybody was speaking to take the french system as a base for US ... but they did'nt make it.

Sönam
By understanding everything you perceive from the perspective of the view, you are freed from the constraints of philosophical beliefs.
By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
- Longchen Rabjam -
User avatar
Sönam
 
Posts: 1999
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:42 pm

Malcolm wrote: .... mandated insurance coverage which I regard as a violation of my rights to choose and as something than makes Govt, interference in our lives all the more pervasive since it is tied to our income taxes.


This is a kind of thinking that is just incomprehensible to me. And many people born and raised in the US repeat this. The main principle is to work together to make sure that all people have access to quality health care rather than relying on economic rationing of health care through money.

Of course a money system could still be invoked with health care with richer people charged proportionally more than poorer people and with health care free below a particular income and dependant level.

Kirt
Last edited by kirtu on Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:46 pm

kirtu wrote:
This is a kind of thinking that is just incomprehensible to me. And many people born and raised in the US repeat this.


Either give health care to everyone (UHC/SP), or don't give it to anyone. But I'll be damned if I am going to be forced to pay some insurance company for health insurance I damn well don't need and won't use. Moreover, I am completely opposed to the present HMO system.

I really hope they do toss out Obama care on its ear.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 12745
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Sönam » Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:48 pm

kirtu wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
kirtu wrote:
Unfortunately overturing Obamas's healthcare proposal or Romney's implementation of healthcare is not guaranteed to move the US to a single payer system. Culturally US people really do believe that the principle that "you are on your own" is correct. Therefore most Republicans and many Democrats (almost all of whom are merely liberal Republicans anyway) agree with this point of view.

Kirt


AFAIC am concerned, that is better than mandated insurance coverage which I regard as a violation of my rights to choose and as something than makes Govt, interference in our lives all the more pervasive since it is tied to our income taxes.


This is a kind of thinking that is just incomprehensible to me. And many people born and raised in the US repeat this. The main principle is to work together to make sure that all people have access to quality health care rather than relying on economic rationing of health care through money.

Of course a money system could still be invoked with health care with richer people charged proportionally more than poorer people and with health care free below a particular income and dependant level.

Kirt


As a french guy, I also do not understand that point of view ... as for payement, in France, as the rights are established depending on your salary the richs pay more, and the poor do not pay at all ...

Sönam
By understanding everything you perceive from the perspective of the view, you are freed from the constraints of philosophical beliefs.
By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
- Longchen Rabjam -
User avatar
Sönam
 
Posts: 1999
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:59 pm

Sönam wrote:
As a french guy, I also do not understand that point of view ... as for payement, in France, as the rights are established depending on your salary the richs pay more, and the poor do not pay at all ...

Sönam


"Most general physicians are in private practice but draw their income from the public insurance funds. These funds, unlike their German counterparts, have never gained self-management responsibility. Instead, the government has taken responsibility for the financial and operational management of health insurance (by setting premium levels related to income and determining the prices of goods and services refunded)"

I have no problem with this --but Obamacare is not this.

Obamacare was set up by HMOs for HMOs
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 12745
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:02 pm

Malcolm wrote: But I'll be damned if I am going to be forced to pay some insurance company for health insurance I damn well don't need and won't use.


Just another version of: why should I help pay for other people's health care? IOW you are selfish and only looking out for yourself given this condition. Or as President Obama said: some people believe that "you are on your own" and that's the way things should be.

Anyway everyone is 100% guaranteed to use health care.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:12 pm

kirtu wrote:
Malcolm wrote: But I'll be damned if I am going to be forced to pay some insurance company for health insurance I damn well don't need and won't use.


Just another version of: why should I help pay for other people's health care? IOW you are selfish and only looking out for yourself given this condition. Or as President Obama said: some people believe that "you are on your own" and that's the way things should be.

Anyway everyone is 100% guaranteed to use health care.

Kirt


I am not saying that. I am saying do UHC/SP right or don't do it.Don't do a half-assed job that in end only serves to enrich HMO's and create needless beauracracy. You have no idea what a burden Romney/Obamacare is on many lower income people in Mass.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 12745
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:20 pm

Malcolm wrote:I am not saying that. I am saying do UHC/SP right or don't do it.Don't do a half-assed job that in end only serves to enrich HMO's and create needless beauracracy. You have no idea what a burden Romney/Obamacare is on many lower income people in Mass.


I understand. And when can we expect your candidacy for the MA legislature in order to amend the state heathcare system in order to remove the burden on lower income people?

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4613
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Institutional Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:24 pm

kirtu wrote:
Malcolm wrote:I am not saying that. I am saying do UHC/SP right or don't do it.Don't do a half-assed job that in end only serves to enrich HMO's and create needless beauracracy. You have no idea what a burden Romney/Obamacare is on many lower income people in Mass.


I understand. And when can we expect your candidacy for the MA legislature in order to amend the state heathcare system in order to remove the burden on lower income people?

Kirt


Well, I am pretty sure the USCUS will force a doover of the whole mess.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 12745
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Dzogchen, Buddhism and culture

Postby uan » Tue Jun 05, 2012 3:00 am

Malcolm wrote:Just an observation, but this thread seems to have seriously veered off course, but since it was a thread created out of another thread, may be this is normal...


now it is a thread created out of another thread out of another thread. Very normal from my experience here :rolling: :rolling:

(something tells me we're headed to another thread on Healthcare :tongue: )
uan
 
Posts: 382
Joined: Sat Aug 20, 2011 4:58 am

Re: Human Nature, Politics, and Culture

Postby LastLegend » Fri Jun 08, 2012 12:36 am

I am surprised nobody mentioned slavery and racism.

Power corrupts absolutely because it lacks wisdom and virtues. In ancient China, many dynasties had lasted for a long due to virtuous kings who happened to honor Buddhist teachings and support Buddhism. Can we apply wisdom and virtues in politics these days? Probably will not work. But never underestimate moral teachings of Buddhism and such. Indeed the mind manifests what it feeds. If sex, money, violence, competition for power, statues, etc are the common themes in the media, then we will have chaos.

Confucius:

Virtues, family, country, and peace (within that country)

America:

God, country, family, and community.
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―
User avatar
LastLegend
 
Posts: 2456
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Washington DC

Previous

Return to Lounge

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 9 guests

>