Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby gyougan » Fri Aug 10, 2012 11:30 am

treehuggingoctopus wrote:
gyougan wrote:One more proof that true Buddhist masters are nearly extinct.


Interesting. Do you think that Buddhist teachers of the past didn't hold such views? That they were on the whole freer from prejudice and everyday misconceptions than the contemporary ones are?


I certainly hope they were! What's "realization" good for if it doesn't even free you from the most ridiculous misconceptions and prejudices held by ordinary, uneducated idiots?
gyougan
 
Posts: 81
Joined: Sat Jan 01, 2011 3:37 pm
Location: Helsinki, Finland

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby gyougan » Fri Aug 10, 2012 11:33 am

And by the way, I am not particularly pro-homosexuality. I am dubious about gay marriage and definitely against adoption rights for gay people.

But what Hsuan Hua is advocating here is simply put ridiculous and makes his realization questionable.
gyougan
 
Posts: 81
Joined: Sat Jan 01, 2011 3:37 pm
Location: Helsinki, Finland

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Fri Aug 10, 2012 12:21 pm

gyougan wrote:
treehuggingoctopus wrote:
gyougan wrote:One more proof that true Buddhist masters are nearly extinct.


Interesting. Do you think that Buddhist teachers of the past didn't hold such views? That they were on the whole freer from prejudice and everyday misconceptions than the contemporary ones are?


I certainly hope they were! What's "realization" good for if it doesn't even free you from the most ridiculous misconceptions and prejudices held by ordinary, uneducated idiots?


Well then I wonder when the Golden Age of Buddhist teachers actually ended. Because two or three hundred years ago things seem to have been worse. A thousand years ago a lot worse.
. . . there they saw a rock! But it wasn't a rock . . .
User avatar
treehuggingoctopus
 
Posts: 613
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 6:26 pm
Location: Mudhole? Slimy? My home, this is.

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby jmlee369 » Fri Aug 10, 2012 12:30 pm

This issue being of personal relevance to me, I have followed this matter for some time. Now, first off, I have managed to come across a scriptural reference to sexual activities which are considered sexual misconduct beyond the definitions in the Pali Suttas. It is found in 佛說優婆塞五戒相經(The Buddha Speaks the Upasaka’s Form of the Five Precepts Sutra) volume 24, #1476 in the Taisho. As far as I can understand, non-vaginal sex is deemed misconduct by the Sutra.

As for Master Hua's teachings, I have great respect for his efforts in propagating the Dharma, but have come to realise that not all pronouncements (or even conduct) of realised masters are neccesarily true. For example, there is a voice recording of the Master teaching on Youtube, in which the Master states that most Tibetan lamas have AIDS. That is one claim which we can easily discount. Looking at the actions of other masters, it becomes clear that a profound mastery and realisation of the Dharma does not seem to guarantee perfection of conduct and understanding. Thus, in the case of Master Hua's statements, I will learn from those teachings which I find to be in accord with the Dharma and beneficial in my study, and those that have a basis in Confucian or other cultural ideas, I will leave aside. Having attended two sessions at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, I have no doubt that the practice of Dharma that takes place at the City benefits numerous people.

I have heard elsewhere that DM Heng Sure had commented on this issue, but it would be best to contact him directly, since he is both a senior disciple and seemingly accessible figure.
jmlee369
 
Posts: 97
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:22 am

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Fri Aug 10, 2012 12:39 pm

jmlee369 wrote:Looking at the actions of other masters, it becomes clear that a profound mastery and realisation of the Dharma does not seem to guarantee perfection of conduct and understanding.


That merits a thread of its own:
viewtopic.php?f=66&t=9640
. . . there they saw a rock! But it wasn't a rock . . .
User avatar
treehuggingoctopus
 
Posts: 613
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 6:26 pm
Location: Mudhole? Slimy? My home, this is.

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby gyougan » Fri Aug 10, 2012 12:51 pm

Sadly people especially in Asia take anything these "masters" say as truth.
gyougan
 
Posts: 81
Joined: Sat Jan 01, 2011 3:37 pm
Location: Helsinki, Finland

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby zangskar » Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:05 pm

gyougan wrote:What's "realization" good for if it doesn't even free you from the most ridiculous misconceptions and prejudices held by ordinary, uneducated idiots?

Freedom from views and opinions does not mean modern education or other change of views or opinions, I think.
Best wishes
Lars
zangskar
 
Posts: 160
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:05 pm

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby JKhedrup » Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:15 pm

Yes for me it was profoundly sad to read these comments the first time I found them (while staying at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas incidentally), as I have great appreciation for Master Hsuan Hua and his community. It was not the fact that homosexuality was questioned per se, as of course especially in Mahayana Buddhism there are scriptural sources for this (not saying I necessarily agree with a literalist interpretation, just saying such scriptures are there). The disturbing point was the vehemence and lack of compassion with which it was said.
The comment about most lamas having AIDS I would appreciate a link for. If indeed the Master did say this, it is too ridiculous to even merit comment, and I will have to re-evaluate the esteem in which I hold him yet again. It almost sounds like sectarian posturing.
In order to ensure my mind never comes under the power of the self-cherishing attitude,
I must obtain control over my own mind.
Therefore, amongst all empowerments, the empowerment that gives me control over my mind is the best,
and I have received the most profound empowerment with this teaching.
-Atisha Dipamkara
brtsal ba'i bkhra drin
JKhedrup
 
Posts: 2324
Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 8:28 am
Location: the Netherlands and India

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby Astus » Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:16 pm

Interpretations of marriage, sexual life and many other social customs are not relevant to the path of liberation. They are just ideas of a culture in an era.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4142
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby jmlee369 » Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:28 pm

JKhedrup wrote:Yes for me it was profoundly sad to read these comments the first time I found them (while staying at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas incidentally), as I have great appreciation for Master Hsuan Hua and his community. It was not the fact that homosexuality was questioned per se, as of course especially in Mahayana Buddhism there are scriptural sources for this (not saying I necessarily agree with a literalist interpretation, just saying such scriptures are there). The disturbing point was the vehemence and lack of compassion with which it was said.
The comment about most lamas having AIDS I would appreciate a link for. If indeed the Master did say this, it is too ridiculous to even merit comment, and I will have to re-evaluate the esteem in which I hold him yet again. It almost sounds like sectarian posturing.


The comments occur at 1:10 here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mCOyNf0 ... re=related
The video contains not only statements from Master Hua, but also some additional writings by the creator of the video. Much of it is misinformed (but one example is the misidentification of the Gelug Chakrasamvara statue as the supposed Hindu Vinayaka), and many of them are built up on common Chinese misconceptions of Tibetan Buddhism. Please bear in mind that my Chinese Mandarin is not perfect, and I may have made a mistake. Master Hua was supposedly harshly critical of Tibetan Buddhism on numerous occasions, it seems. I do not know how my association with CTTB affects my samaya, but I genuinely believe that there is good Dharma to be found at CTTB too.
jmlee369
 
Posts: 97
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:22 am

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby Indrajala » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:27 pm

jmlee369 wrote:The comments occur at 1:10 here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mCOyNf0 ... re=related


Jesus wept.

Wherever did he get such ideas?
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5949
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Japan

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby Indrajala » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:34 pm

Astus wrote:Interpretations of marriage, sexual life and many other social customs are not relevant to the path of liberation. They are just ideas of a culture in an era.


It is understandable in many ways, too.

Even today a lot of Buddhist teachings are reworked and tailored to suit cultural, social and political developments. Buddhism as an institution has to be suitable and adaptable to the host culture otherwise it will never take root.
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5949
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Japan

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:42 pm

Astus wrote:Interpretations of marriage, sexual life and many other social customs are not relevant to the path of liberation.


They become relevant to the path of liberation the instant the supposedly highly realized teacher relates them to the path. Which is precisely what HH does:

Cultivators must be normal and not psychologically deranged. We must have proper knowledge and proper views to practice the proper Dharma. Without proper knowledge and proper views, we cannot practice the proper Dharma. Speaking of which, by being off by a hair's width at the beginning, we miss the mark by thousands of miles. Every Buddhist absolutely cannot make this mistake.


What he's saying is that the practice of the Dharma is absolutely incompatible with homosexuality - which he thus wholeheartedly and totally condemns, of course, but also relates to the practice; more than that, the issue of homosexuality is for him intrinsically and unavoidably related to the practice of Buddhadharma. Consequently, his morbid views on homosexuality do seem to be very much a part of his understanding of the Dharma.
. . . there they saw a rock! But it wasn't a rock . . .
User avatar
treehuggingoctopus
 
Posts: 613
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 6:26 pm
Location: Mudhole? Slimy? My home, this is.

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby LastLegend » Fri Aug 10, 2012 3:14 pm

The standard is sex in a marriage between a man and a woman. Anything else Buddha did not say. Another example is: do not kill any sentient beings. That's standard. Buddha did not say anything else about exceptions or no exceptions. Buddha went with standards.
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)
User avatar
LastLegend
 
Posts: 2228
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Washington DC

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby Jikan » Fri Aug 10, 2012 3:27 pm

treehuggingoctopus wrote:What he's saying is that the practice of the Dharma is absolutely incompatible with homosexuality - which he thus wholeheartedly and totally condemns, of course, but also relates to the practice; more than that, the issue of homosexuality is for him intrinsically and unavoidably related to the practice of Buddhadharma. Consequently, his morbid views on homosexuality do seem to be very much a part of his understanding of the Dharma.


To me, this suggests that Ven. Hsuan Hua's understanding of Dharma may be a bit Hinayana. I mean that in the sense of the vehicle-of-renunciation, not as a cipher for Theravada.

Right now our sangha is reading through the recent Buddhist Text Society translation of the Surangama Sutra. Of course, it includes selected commentary by Hsuan Hua, which are often extremely lucid and insightful. I don't think his excellent contribution to Buddhist culture in the English-speaking world should be underestimated. I don't think 100% of that contribution needs to be accepted at face value, or at all, by Buddhists who are not his students or students of his students.
Jikan
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5450
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:04 pm

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby Indrajala » Fri Aug 10, 2012 5:02 pm

LastLegend wrote:The standard is sex in a marriage between a man and a woman. Anything else Buddha did not say. Another example is: do not kill any sentient beings. That's standard. Buddha did not say anything else about exceptions or no exceptions. Buddha went with standards.


The Buddha suggested that it is better to stick your male member in a snake's mouth than into a woman's organ.

You can look that up in the Vinaya.

Your idea of a "standard" is just your own opinion.
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5949
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Japan

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby Lotus415 » Fri Aug 10, 2012 5:46 pm

Again, there is a difference between stating an opinion and stating such horrible things as is quoted. One wonders if he would have supported the "god hates fags" group who claim all disasters in the world come from homosexuality?
One can skirt around the issue and say he was "conservative" or preaching to "ethnic Chinese" (which he wasn't only, since his main goal was to bring the Dharma to the west, yet he did still require his disciples to learn Chinese), but the types of things recorded are really just vile.


"Homosexuality invites punishment onto itself. The sentence is a strange disease. Since yang counteracts yang, yin counteracts yin the way that magnets have a positive and a negative side. Attraction requires one side to be yin and the other to be yang. If both sides were yang or yin, they will not stick together. Deduce from the law of physics and we know that the principles of yin and yang cannot be dismissed.

The Book of Changes says, "one yin and one yang is called the Tao; too much yin and too much yang is a sickness." When yin and yang combine, it is the Tao. When yin and yang do not combine, sickness occurs. This is why homosexual behavior created AIDS. Some say the source of AIDS is Africa. But that is not the origin, the origin lies with homosexual behavior."

http://www.gbm-online.com/online/dharma/sincere.html

Well there's some "science" for you.
Lotus415
 
Posts: 39
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2012 11:42 pm

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Fri Aug 10, 2012 6:03 pm

Jikan wrote:
treehuggingoctopus wrote:What he's saying is that the practice of the Dharma is absolutely incompatible with homosexuality - which he thus wholeheartedly and totally condemns, of course, but also relates to the practice; more than that, the issue of homosexuality is for him intrinsically and unavoidably related to the practice of Buddhadharma. Consequently, his morbid views on homosexuality do seem to be very much a part of his understanding of the Dharma.


To me, this suggests that Ven. Hsuan Hua's understanding of Dharma may be a bit Hinayana. I mean that in the sense of the vehicle-of-renunciation, not as a cipher for Theravada.


Well, the problem is, he isn't saying 'sex is evil and if you have sex you go to hell and not paradise, sorry, nirvana, and thus it undeniably follows you must never have sex, you filthy you". Firstly, what he's condemning (a euphemism) is homosexual sex and homosexual sex only. Secondly, to commit further euphemisms, he's pretty radical. He's not even saying that gay sex makes Lord Buddha sad, milk go sour and kittens die. What he's saying is that having gay sex is heartily contributing to total all-encompassing genocide, cultural and otherwise, and it makes whole worlds and universes go BANG!, and it obliterates the Dharma by the ton:

Venerable HH wrote:This country will perish; the human race will end altogether. This is the stirring of monsters and demons, ghosts and goblins. They make people abnormal so that everyone dies in the end. When every country around the world condones homosexuality, the world is finished, destroyed.

If we do not have proper knowledge and proper views, not only are we inhuman, but we are no better than animals! Remember, we must bear in mind what is right and what is wrong. You must know what is the right way to be human and what is the wrong way; that way you can be a decent human being.

Homosexuality contradicts procreation and is a form of sexual misconduct. Sexual misconduct is forbidden according to Buddhism. The Five Precepts prohibiting killing, stealing, sexual misconduct, lying and taking intoxicants must be followed. If homosexuality becomes legal, then the human race will vanish. Why will it vanish? Heaven will punish us. Homosexuals exist due in part to the influence of a certain religion. This religion used to be underground and did not dare to promote homosexuality openly, but now that we're in an age where Dharma is on the decline, all kinds of strange phenomenon are happening. Consequently, these people protest, join parades, and lobby for legalizing homosexuality. This is essentially an omen for doomsday. We should know this because if everyone recognizes this as a fault, people may live a little longer. Otherwise, everyone will face cataclysm, a catastrophe of inordinate proportion that brings death to all. Since all the perversities and wickedness in our world now are too awful for words, people who still feel that this time and age is not bad might be crazy people, more or less.


Really, it's not even crazy talk. Words fail me here. :alien: :alien: :alien:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHjxr97oXKc

Lotus415 wrote:Again, there is a difference between stating an opinion and stating such horrible things as is quoted. One wonders if he would have supported the "god hates fags" group who claim all disasters in the world come from homosexuality?
One can skirt around the issue and say he was "conservative" or preaching to "ethnic Chinese" (which he wasn't only, since his main goal was to bring the Dharma to the west, yet he did still require his disciples to learn Chinese), but the types of things recorded are really just vile.


"Homosexuality invites punishment onto itself. The sentence is a strange disease. Since yang counteracts yang, yin counteracts yin the way that magnets have a positive and a negative side. Attraction requires one side to be yin and the other to be yang. If both sides were yang or yin, they will not stick together. Deduce from the law of physics and we know that the principles of yin and yang cannot be dismissed.

The Book of Changes says, "one yin and one yang is called the Tao; too much yin and too much yang is a sickness." When yin and yang combine, it is the Tao. When yin and yang do not combine, sickness occurs. This is why homosexual behavior created AIDS. Some say the source of AIDS is Africa. But that is not the origin, the origin lies with homosexual behavior."

http://www.gbm-online.com/online/dharma/sincere.html

Well there's some "science" for you.


In the context of his previously mentioned revelations about the Tibetan sangha: is he trying to say that Rinpoches are predominantly gay and it's them who may well be resposible for the current scope of AIDS? Simple yet brilliant! :crazy:
. . . there they saw a rock! But it wasn't a rock . . .
User avatar
treehuggingoctopus
 
Posts: 613
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 6:26 pm
Location: Mudhole? Slimy? My home, this is.

Re: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby undefineable » Fri Aug 10, 2012 6:24 pm

So mahayana Buddhism in theory is about avoiding the three poisons and cultivating an understanding of sunyata, whereas mahayana Buddhism in practice is about cultivating aversion towards sentient beings on the basis that they are inherently existent demons (unless they've managed to somehow hollow themselves out to leave an empty shell of confucian-style conformity).

If that's what Buddhism has to be, then I'll have to refrain from 'bad language'. There again, in delving deep into his own psyche, this Hua guy seems to have uncovered a whole new level of aversion and reification, as if he were letting it out of its kennel for a run in the park or something.

It's interesting to imagine how someone with old-fashioned prejudices who can't see beyond the colour of someone's skin or the kind of people someone fancies would react to our modern western -more-penetrating- perspectives, in which people are judged on the basis of the (apparent) fabric of what they are. In other words, how would Hua's mind shape up if he saw just how different -'psychologically deranged' in his words- people with conditions such as schizophrenia and autism really are from the majority, as well as how normal (and self-evidently more balanced than normal in 'yin-yang' terms) homosexuals are by comparison? Let's be thankful that all that appears to have gone over his head and under his radar, otherwise I suspect we'd be left with the the somewhat unwelcome headline "Chinese Buddhist leader running extermination camp for headcases" _ _

I mean, what are 'abnormal' practitioners -including all who have taken (or who are considering taking) refuge vows- supposed to do? Seal themselves up in vajra hell and vow never to leave? How exactly would sunyata and anatta hold up in a reality/dharmakaya so easily shattered by vagaries in the innate conditions of a few sentient beings? {I wonder if I should stop practicing any form of dharma. I thought it was enough that I understood parts of it :shrug: }
"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: Hsuan Hua on Homosexuality

Postby undefineable » Fri Aug 10, 2012 6:30 pm

Sorry I over-reacted -On further reading, it seems this guy is clearly preaching a-dharma-
"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

PreviousNext

Return to East Asian Buddhism

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: frank123, Inge and 9 guests

>