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am i breaking my sila - Dhamma Wheel

am i breaking my sila

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
jason c
Posts: 128
Joined: Mon May 21, 2012 11:41 am

am i breaking my sila

Postby jason c » Sun May 27, 2012 11:57 pm

if someone is begging for money and i posess first hand knowledge that the person will use that money to harm someone it would be unwise to support this person.
as a self employed business owner my government orders me to collect and submit taxes to them. now i posess first hand knowledge that my country uses a portion of this money to manufacture weapons that can only be used to hurt. posessing this knowledge and handing over taxes (supporting their behavior) am i breaking my sila?

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hanzze_
Posts: 261
Joined: Fri May 25, 2012 4:30 am

Re: am i breaking my sila

Postby hanzze_ » Mon May 28, 2012 2:20 am

Jason,

First of all, as a Buddhist you have to follow the national laws and you will never have a problem with them, if you observe Silas correctly. Secondly, the use of tax is not the matter in regard of the later use and so you are not involved directly, which would be different, if you are involved in direct voting for this or that use, or this or that way.
So what to do with it, is a matter of your voting. The act of sharing your part, is just the act of sharing your part and your thought while doing it.

You can tax pretty good as Dana. Important is that you give it without a wish back, for the good of others and the good mind setting before, while and after the act of giving.

And third, if you do not violent taking what is not giving, you even would not have a problem with paying tax. Silas are the way to get free of new bad conscience or bad effects, they are not to use them for your ideas of good and bad (judgment of others) and no excuse for ones disability in letting go. Actually they are a support, because you always need to get deeper into your intentions and ways of thought.

Do not speculate, just observe Silas. And your are not a big patron who shares his own, remember that it is taken and not really yours, so tax is just a way to compensate peoples disability to share.
In countries where gratitude on generosity was naturally practiced, the was long time no need for tax. In times where duties are out and illusory rights are in, quarrels will be not be lessened.

If one does not come in conflict with a higher problem, he does not quarrel with some minor issues. Dig the unwholesome intention up and do not fall into hypocritical ways. Last but not least, if you like to have it easier, there is a reason why people leave their homes into the homeless state. Its good to practice step by step.

And if such thoughts of "I support the bad man" come up, better think on the own greed government of of thought and put a veto if they do not good.

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manas
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Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:04 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: am i breaking my sila

Postby manas » Mon May 28, 2012 4:12 am

Then the Blessed One, picking up a tiny bit of dust with the tip of his fingernail, said to the monk, "There isn't even this much form...feeling...
perception...fabrications...consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity."

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hanzze_
Posts: 261
Joined: Fri May 25, 2012 4:30 am

Re: am i breaking my sila

Postby hanzze_ » Mon May 28, 2012 5:08 am

It would be a risky speculation if we put our wage on, that the (mentioned) beggar would harm lesser if he has not got what you have to much. Over all, you are not able to do wrong by your self if you have no more power (money) in your hand.

Reductor
Posts: 1381
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 6:52 am
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: am i breaking my sila

Postby Reductor » Mon May 28, 2012 6:40 am

A man is walking down the street. Through no fault of his own, he is mugged. That mugger then buys a nice shiny gun with the proceeds and uses it to kill his drug dealer.

Should the man who was mugged be held accountable for the drug dealer's death?

Last I heard, we're not allowed to opt out of taxes; if you don't pay, you go to jail.

But it's not even so bleak as that analogy above, because the government occasionally provides us with assistance at least, while the mugger doesn't (unless he is a very strange mugger).

So no, I'd say your doing fine.

jason c
Posts: 128
Joined: Mon May 21, 2012 11:41 am

Re: am i breaking my sila

Postby jason c » Mon May 28, 2012 11:49 am

thanks for your replies, they have been understood.
taxes are not a real big problem in my life, i shut my home building business down in 2009, when the economy went belly up. now i operate a carpentry business from the back of my bicycle (sounds depressing) but i highly reccomend it. i'm fortunate, my wife is a school teacher and brings home most of our families money. my government would be hard pressed to buy a slingshot with my meager contributions.
there has been alot of talk about the buddha's teachings being a bit outdated, and i was just wondering if there was a direct teaching of the buddha that addressed this current topic?
maybe this is why he created the order of monks and nuns, for those who want to take morality to its perfection?
metta,
jason

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hanzze_
Posts: 261
Joined: Fri May 25, 2012 4:30 am

Re: am i breaking my sila

Postby hanzze_ » Mon May 28, 2012 1:17 pm



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