Buddhist Hate Crimes

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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Adi » Sun Feb 23, 2014 8:31 pm

Kindly add my thanks for the clarity of understanding presented here.

Malcolm wrote:...When we bring to mind our bodhicitta vows we are not saying, "I vow to do this practice just to save only the sentient beings I like", we are saying "I am practicing the six perfections in order to become a Buddha so that I might rescue all beings from samsara."
….


And all means all, something that to me when realized becomes a kind of inconceivable simplicity of intention and action where one no longer has to make distinctions between sentient beings, liking some and not liking others. All means all, which is also to me part of a view that encompasses everything, an inconceivable expansiveness vast as space. Of course all this means equanimity and discriminating wisdom must also be developed, but if done with the expansive view the chances of that turning into bias and ineffectiveness are vastly reduced.

-Adi
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby muni » Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:56 am

Adi wrote:Kindly add my thanks for the clarity of understanding presented here.

Malcolm wrote:...When we bring to mind our bodhicitta vows we are not saying, "I vow to do this practice just to save only the sentient beings I like", we are saying "I am practicing the six perfections in order to become a Buddha so that I might rescue all beings from samsara."
….


And all means all, something that to me when realized becomes a kind of inconceivable simplicity of intention and action where one no longer has to make distinctions between sentient beings, liking some and not liking others. All means all, which is also to me part of a view that encompasses everything, an inconceivable expansiveness vast as space. Of course all this means equanimity and discriminating wisdom must also be developed, but if done with the expansive view the chances of that turning into bias and ineffectiveness are vastly reduced.

-Adi


Wow! Thanks both of you. :smile:
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby tellyontellyon » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:41 pm

Can I ask about the reponsibility for others.

E.g. If I know that somebody is hurting somebody else e.g. going after somebody with an axe, then I have a choice... Do I intervene or not intervene? Could something I do or fail to do change the outcome of the situation and the ensuing Karmic outcome for both the victim and the attacker.
I am not saying that I am karmically responsible for what the attacker does... but I am karmically responsible for what I do. I.e. intervening or not.

If, for example, I could phone the police but decide not to, or wash my hands on the matter, then a decision that I have made has the likely outcome of greater harm or even the death of the victim, even though I didn't swing the axe myself.

Surely there would be serious karmic consequences for myself if I failed to intervene in a situation that: I know about, and know that it is in my power to help?
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby odysseus » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:57 pm

As Buddhists, these kind of actions have an impact on us also. We´re not directly responsible as individuals but we should have compassion and show responsibility and tell them to not to do it again. Not so easy, since many are Buddhists from birth and may not be so serious about their practice and just want to live.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Malcolm » Wed Feb 26, 2014 2:07 pm

tellyontellyon wrote:Can I ask about the reponsibility for others.

E.g. If I know that somebody is hurting somebody else e.g. going after somebody with an axe, then I have a choice... Do I intervene or not intervene? Could something I do or fail to do change the outcome of the situation and the ensuing Karmic outcome for both the victim and the attacker.
I am not saying that I am karmically responsible for what the attacker does... but I am karmically responsible for what I do. I.e. intervening or not.

If, for example, I could phone the police but decide not to, or wash my hands on the matter, then a decision that I have made has the likely outcome of greater harm or even the death of the victim, even though I didn't swing the axe myself.

Surely there would be serious karmic consequences for myself if I failed to intervene in a situation that: I know about, and know that it is in my power to help?


We do what we can, and we wish happiness on all. But the best use of our time, until we really have the capacity to truly practice engaged bodhicitta, is to practice Dharma to increase our wisdom. Until that time we should not be giving away our limbs, nor risking our lives trying to "help" others thinking that this is somehow "bodhisattva" activity. As long as we have limited compassion, we should be judicious about how we decide we are going to "help".
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Feb 26, 2014 4:41 pm

tellyontellyon wrote:Can I ask about the reponsibility for others.

E.g. If I know that somebody is hurting somebody else e.g. going after somebody with an axe, then I have a choice... Do I intervene or not intervene? Could something I do or fail to do change the outcome of the situation and the ensuing Karmic outcome for both the victim and the attacker.
I am not saying that I am karmically responsible for what the attacker does... but I am karmically responsible for what I do. I.e. intervening or not.

If, for example, I could phone the police but decide not to, or wash my hands on the matter, then a decision that I have made has the likely outcome of greater harm or even the death of the victim, even though I didn't swing the axe myself.

Surely there would be serious karmic consequences for myself if I failed to intervene in a situation that: I know about, and know that it is in my power to help?



There are so many things going on right now that you will have failed to intervene in, how do you pick? I mean "knowing" about a situation does not make you the most qualified to deal with it. In this instance, not being Burmese, not living there, and not having any connection other than being a Western Buddhist sort of lessens your chances of having any immediate impact, unless you work for an NGO trying to stem violence of something. I would guess that the answer is an unequivocal "yes" to what you are asking overall, but that it mainly applies when you actually stand a good chance of doing something, if it applied to every atrocity we were aware of due to modern media capabilities we wouldn't even know where to start. The world is awash with this kind of activity.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby tellyontellyon » Thu Feb 27, 2014 6:24 pm

Hiya Johnny,
Yes, it is a difficult question. If you were standing by the side of a river and drowning children kept floating past, how many would you pull out? Would you have to rest? In the end, nobody can do it all... but I did say "...and know that it is in my power to help?"

My power is pretty limited so I would be bound to get tired and I have other responsibilities to other people too... so at some point I would have to stop.

But, my real point was about whether it is possible to 'opt-out' of making a decision. I don't think it is possible for somebody to just put their hands in their pockets in an attempt to convince themselves that they can somehow have no responsibility in the matter. We have far more responsibility than we would like to have.

I take the point of what Malcolm said about how if we are acting as unenlightened beings we may be acting out of ignorance and ego and actually making things worse.. That is true, even though I think this comes more from Naess than Buddha. My power to know the right thing to do is also limited.

'Not acting' or even 'not choosing' are in themselves really choices and acts, and have karmic consequences. 'Not-acting' is also a choice made in ignorance by unenlightened beings...

But the point I am making is to not-choose or to not-act is in fact an impossibility. Not doing something is still a choice that has consequences that we are responsible for. So I am compelled to make a choice, I must choose between acting or not acting and must take the consequences of either.

I don't have a choice about having to choose. So even being aware of our limitations and ignorance, we can't simply fall back on 'not acting' as a default position. IMO

I'm making this as a general point rather than just about Burma.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Asbestos Buddha » Sun Apr 13, 2014 5:34 am

Jigme Tsultrim wrote:I have seen little open discussion of Buddhist hate crimes as occurred in Sri Lanka, and more recently in Myanmar. I will skip recounting the long list of atrocities in either case. Or the human rights abuses committed just 3 months ago in Thailand by failing to give protection to 1500 refuges of Buddhist violence in Myanmar. Rather than granting them asylum, or allowing them to continue on their own to Indonesia or Malaysia, they were held in detention camps and then deported back to their abusers in Myanmar.
So is the larger Buddhist community not in any way responsible for bringing these crimes to account? Where is/was the outcry by the Tibetans, the Japanese, the Koreans, the Chinese, etc. For that matter what about the Politically Correct minions of the so called "developed" countries?
I know I am sickened and deeply ashamed. Are YOU??


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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Alfredo » Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:19 am

I am concerned about these things too. Most of the examples involve Theravadin monks (probably because most of the countries in which Buddhist monks have any real political power are Theravadin), but Bhutan's government (officially Drukpa Kargyud, with some Nyingma representation) perpetrated ethnic cleansing of Nepali-speaking Hindus in the 1990's. I'm not sure if the FPMT Maitreya Project rises (or rather descends) to the level of these atrocities--perhaps it is better compared to the various scandals involving charismatic Buddhist leaders.

So, what to do. Write letters to the editor? The Dalai Lama has already spoken out against the Burmese situation, to no obvious effect. Donate money to some sort of legal campaign? If any are being organized, I would appreciate knowing about them. Abandon Buddhism in protest? But any religion is going to suffer scandals, and surely there is a baby amidst all this bathwater.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Malcolm » Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:44 pm

Alfredo wrote: but Bhutan's government (officially Drukpa Kargyud, with some Nyingma representation) perpetrated ethnic cleansing of Nepali-speaking Hindus in the 1990's. \


Not at all. Bhutan expelled illegal immigrants in response to a communist threat against their government.

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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Alfredo » Thu Apr 17, 2014 3:17 pm

The reality is that a bunch of people who had been born in Bhutan were forced into exile, apparently in order to prevent that Nepali-speaking Hindu population from gaining a demographic majority, and then having Bhutan face a Sikkim-like fate.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Zhen Li » Thu Apr 17, 2014 3:43 pm

It doesn't matter if you cross a border illegally and then have a baby, it's still illegal immigration, which should only warrant expulsion. The fact was that this population was not only illegally colonising land owned by the Bhutanese crown, but was highly militant in reaction to attempts to police them. Personally, I am more offended by the idea that the government tried to cover this up by claiming they had signed "Voluntary Migration Forms." They had every right to expel the colonists forcibly.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Malcolm » Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:39 pm

Alfredo wrote:The reality is that a bunch of people who had been born in Bhutan were forced into exile, apparently in order to prevent that Nepali-speaking Hindu population from gaining a demographic majority...


That is the communist version of events. In reality, there was a terrorist campaign waged by Nepalis in order to gain control of the Bhutanese Government -- but they failed.

Also, the United States is one of the very few countries where citizenship is granted through birth. Most countries in the world do not do this.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Alfredo » Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:03 am

While some of the Nepalis may well have been there "illegally," bear in mind that the law was changed retroactively, and enforced with none too much solicitude for the rights of those deported.

The communist (Naxalite) movement based in NE India did make "incursions" into Bhutan (and were ultimately repulsed), and probably had a lot of support from the general Nepali-speaking population--and they had the right to be communists, no?--but this is a fundamentally different issue. The average Hlotsampa did not take up arms against the government.

Too often, Western dharma practitioners value the "preservation" of Tibeto-Himalayan culture above the human rights of others whose cultures are less attractive. But culture changes anyway. If things had been a little different, Bhutan might have embraced the principle of respect for diversity alongside their much-vaunted democratic reforms.

Some links:

Dhimal describes the day in June 1992 when Tshring Togbe, the district magistrate, arrived in Lali accompanied by Bhutanese soldiers. Togbe called the villagers to assemble and then announced over a loudspeaker that they had seven days to pack up their belongings and leave the country. He spoke to them in Nepali. When a few of the peasants protested, an army officer shouted, “This is a hunting ground, and we can take you like monkeys.” Dhimal, his wife and five young children decided to leave. They had heard of people being killed in neighboring villages.



http://www.thenation.com/article/166667/enigma-bhutan#

“The army took all the people from their houses,” a young refugee told me. “As we left Bhutan, we were forced to sign the document. They snapped our photos. The man told me to smile, to show my teeth. He wanted to show that I was leaving my country willingly, happily, that I was not forced to leave.”

http://www.hrw.org/news/2008/01/31/bhut ... -cleansing

Look what you are supporting. Are you not ashamed?
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Malcolm » Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:41 am

Alfredo wrote:Are you not ashamed?

Nope.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Alfredo » Fri Apr 18, 2014 10:50 am

There are thousands more stories like this. You must have great confidence in the Bhutan government, military, and police. Or a remarkable hatred of conmmunism, that you would show such disregard for the human rights, and civil legal rights, of noncombatants.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Malcolm » Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:27 pm

Alfredo wrote:There are thousands more stories like this. You must have great confidence in the Bhutan government, military, and police. Or a remarkable hatred of conmmunism, that you would show such disregard for the human rights, and civil legal rights, of noncombatants.


The Bhutanese were fair, as far as I am concerned. The Nepali Communists wanted to take over Nepal, and used the presence of the Lhotsampas as a pretext for agitation. The whole situation is far more complicated than you paint it. And in the end, the Bhutanese Gvt. has the right to secure their borders and expel those they deem illegal. Not all Lhotsampas were expelled, incidentally. The real crime is the way the Nepalese Communists have abandoned their own countrymen in camps in Eastern Nepal.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Nighthawk » Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:30 pm

Malcolm wrote:
We do what we can, and we wish happiness on all. But the best use of our time, until we really have the capacity to truly practice engaged bodhicitta, is to practice Dharma to increase our wisdom. Until that time we should not be giving away our limbs, nor risking our lives trying to "help" others thinking that this is somehow "bodhisattva" activity. As long as we have limited compassion, we should be judicious about how we decide we are going to "help".


You may be right but this is a very weak attitude.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Malcolm » Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:39 am

Nighthawk wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
We do what we can, and we wish happiness on all. But the best use of our time, until we really have the capacity to truly practice engaged bodhicitta, is to practice Dharma to increase our wisdom. Until that time we should not be giving away our limbs, nor risking our lives trying to "help" others thinking that this is somehow "bodhisattva" activity. As long as we have limited compassion, we should be judicious about how we decide we are going to "help".


You may be right but this is a very weak attitude.


No, it is a realistic attitude.
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Re: Buddhist Hate Crimes

Postby Jikan » Sun Apr 20, 2014 8:39 pm

The Maoists are one faction among many with an interest in taking leadership in Nepal. Participatory democracy is like that--people try to take control of the country. And with an establishment of such delightful leaders as these, it's hard not to blame the Reds for thinking they just might do a better (fairer) job of it than this crowd.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dipendra_of_Nepal

Malcolm's right that the political situation in central Asia is very complicated.
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