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Disability pension and Right Livelihood - Dhamma Wheel

Disability pension and Right Livelihood

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
jackson
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Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2009 4:40 am

Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby jackson » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:16 am

Hi everyone,
I'm wondering, if someone has a serious disability, and lives on a government pension, does this fall under wrong livelihood? I've read quotes from the Buddha that make it seem as though it would be, so I'm interested to know.
With metta, :smile:
Jackson
"The heart of the path is quite easy. There’s no need to explain anything at length. Let go of love and hate and let things be. That’s all that I do in my own practice." - Ajahn Chah

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cooran
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Location: Queensland, Australia

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby cooran » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:39 am

Hello Jackson,

If there is a disability, and the right conditions set by the government are in place, medical staff have signed the correct forms, and their is no fraud - then Yes, it is a Right Livelihood.

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

chownah
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Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby chownah » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:43 am

I think that someone giving you money is not the same thing as "livelihood".....it is just receiving a gift more or less.....
chownah

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cooran
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Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby cooran » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:48 am

Interesting chownah. With that reasoning a bhikkhu doesn't have Right Livelihood? .... I mean, he lives on Gift .... accommodation, food and requisites supplied by the Lay people. And someone on a Disability Pension lives on what the people of the country (the Taxpayers) supply. What do you think?

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

chownah
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Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby chownah » Sun Sep 11, 2011 8:01 am

I don't know what right livelihood means with regard to a monk. I guess that doing the things that a monk must do to remain a monk is what a monk does for livelihood in that the monk receives requisites because he/she performs certain duties. A disability pension does not require one to do anything to receive the money....there is nothing done to receive the money.....a disability pension is based on your condition and not on your activity.
chownah

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cooran
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Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby cooran » Sun Sep 11, 2011 9:25 am

---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

Jhana4
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Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 5:20 pm
Location: U.S.A., Northeast

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby Jhana4 » Sun Sep 11, 2011 12:14 pm

TEA party Buddhists, what next?

Jackson, no sarcasm, I would like to see the quotes you mentioned in the original post to this thread.

I'm not an expert of any kind, but from studying the suttas it seems to me that right and wrong livliehood are about avoiding harming others and avoiding occupations that would take one away from leading a contemplative, peaceful life conducive to building good kamma and pursuing the dhamma.

Cooran, in regards to your rejoinder about monks not having duties and people giving Dana to support the Sangha. Yes, that is true, in the idea -- in the religious texts that come to us from 2600 years ago. In reality, in Asia, people give dana because they expect to get a better next life ( bigger house, more beautiful body, more money and possibly, magically seeing beyond that mentality to discover something more spiritual ). No, that isn't all Asian Buddhists. In the situation of serious, non-materialistic Buddhists I would say that in exchange for their Dana these people receive from the monks an education about the Dhanma, meditation guidance, community leadership/support and a sense of support for the things most people talk to religious officials about.
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.

chownah
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Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby chownah » Sun Sep 11, 2011 12:41 pm

Cooran,
For all I know you could be exactly correct. My view is that a monk can not act in whatever manner they want and still be a monk and being a monk is necessary for them to receive the dana.....they must continue to be monks to continue to receive their livelihood which comes from dana.....a person receiving a disability pension does so because there has been some sort of "contract" or "agreement" that if some certain thing should transpire then money will be transfered in such a manner and for such a duration of time.....there is nothing needed to maintain the agreement as it is self maintaining.....if monks had the same situation they could just get a house and have wild parties and the dana would just keep coming...but it doesn't....I hope.....

When I think of "livelihood" in the context of the Buddha's teaching I think of "actions" one takes to provide for ones needs....perhaps this is more restrictive than the modern day worldly definition of "livelihood"....perhaps I am wrong......

I think an interesting thing to ponder is:
If a murderer, thief, drug dealer, and all around evil person gave someone money every month (but not his/her mother) and told that person that the money was gotten by evil rotten and dispicable means but the person accepts it anyway then many would consider it wrong livelihood.....but if that same murderer gave it as dana then it is ok.....I'm not saying anyone here would think this but my general impression of people out in the real world is that this sort of attitude would not be uncommon.
chownah

jackson
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Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2009 4:40 am

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby jackson » Sun Sep 11, 2011 6:17 pm

"The heart of the path is quite easy. There’s no need to explain anything at length. Let go of love and hate and let things be. That’s all that I do in my own practice." - Ajahn Chah

Jhana4
Posts: 1309
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 5:20 pm
Location: U.S.A., Northeast

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby Jhana4 » Sun Sep 11, 2011 6:34 pm

Thanks for the reply Jackson.

My uninformed guess would be that whoever wrote that was referring to willful indolence and not people becoming unable to support themselves through misfortune.

FWIW, "monk" is a western word and I *think* "bhikkhu" roughly translates to "beggar". At least in the idealized world of the texts 2600 years ago nothing was expected of Buddhist monks except meditation, proper behavior and teaching ( which was considered a gift, not a recompense for almsfood, robes, etc )
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.

morning mist
Posts: 251
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2011 3:31 pm

Re: Disability pension and Right Livelihood

Postby morning mist » Sun Sep 11, 2011 6:59 pm

with metta,


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