Buddhist fundamentalists?

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Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Mon Jun 06, 2011 3:26 am

The term "fundamentalism' can be defined as the strict and literal interpretation of ancient or fundamental doctrines of any religion or ideology. It is often associated with god-based religions. Fundamentalists are generally regarded as being very close-minded, as opposed to 'open-minded' meaning in this context that they cannot see from another person's point of view.

Do you think this occurs among buddhists?

Have you ever known or encountered someone you would consider to be a Buddhist fundamentalist?"
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Jun 06, 2011 4:25 am

Buddhism is "the middle way" so you wouldn't expect to find fundamentalists, but like any human organization, there are going be some imperfections. There have been what could be called "fundamentalists" who hold rigidly to the literal words in the suttas/sutras often to the detriment of Buddhism.

A recent example is over the bhikkhuni issue in Theravada and the bhikkshuni issue in Tibetan Buddhism. For some, it has been felt that the female nun lineage cannot be reinstated since there are no female nuns to ordain the new novices. But this is mistaken when considering that the Dharmaguptaka line has remained unbroken and nuns from that lineage can be used (and in fact have been used and today there are over 1,000 Theravada and Tibetan nuns). But some of the more literal interpreters of the sutras and Vinaya feel that these ordinations are invalid.

see also: Bhikkhuni ordination

19. “Much though he recites the sacred texts, but acts not accordingly, that heedless man is like a cowherd who only counts the cows of others — he does not partake of the blessings of the holy life.

20. Little though he recites the sacred texts, but puts the Teaching into practice, forsaking lust, hatred, and delusion, with true wisdom and emancipated mind, clinging to nothing of this or any other world — he indeed partakes of the blessings of a holy life.”

The Buddha, Dhammapada verses 19-20
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Jun 06, 2011 7:31 am

I believe that the term "fundamentalism" has come to mean something different in our society (though it includes the definition you have offered) and that is a tenacious grasping to ones tenents or system of belief as the only valid form of truth and a denigration of all other belief systems, in which case I believe that I have met (and continue to meet) a number of Buddhist fundamentalists.
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One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Indrajala » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:41 am

As a Buddhist fundamentalist, I am fundamentally opposed to violence, hatred and greed. I advocate vegetarianism, organic farming and environmentalism. I believe in social welfare, free healthcare, free education and free rehabilitation for drug users. I believe animals should be treated with respect and not tested on, nor should they be butchered to feed us.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Jnana » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:04 am

Huseng wrote:As a Buddhist fundamentalist, I am fundamentally opposed to violence, hatred and greed. I advocate vegetarianism, organic farming and environmentalism. I believe in social welfare, free healthcare, free education and free rehabilitation for drug users. I believe animals should be treated with respect and not tested on, nor should they be butchered to feed us.

I don't think that any of these beliefs and values are unique to Buddhism. Sounds kinda like the Canadian NDP platform.... :tongue:

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Indrajala » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:13 am

Jñāna wrote:
Huseng wrote:As a Buddhist fundamentalist, I am fundamentally opposed to violence, hatred and greed. I advocate vegetarianism, organic farming and environmentalism. I believe in social welfare, free healthcare, free education and free rehabilitation for drug users. I believe animals should be treated with respect and not tested on, nor should they be butchered to feed us.

I don't think that any of these beliefs and values are unique to Buddhism. Sounds kinda like the Canadian NDP platform.... :tongue:

All the best,

Geoff


Bunch of fundamentalists them NDPers. :thumbsup:
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Jnana » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:16 am

Huseng wrote:Bunch of fundamentalists them NDPers. :thumbsup:

And now the official opposition party!...

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:46 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:
A recent example is over the bhikkhuni issue in Theravada and the bhikkshuni issue in Tibetan Buddhism. For some, it has been felt that the female nun lineage cannot be reinstated since there are no female nuns to ordain the new novices. But this is mistaken when considering that the Dharmaguptaka line has remained unbroken and nuns from that lineage can be used (and in fact have been used and today there are over 1,000 Theravada and Tibetan nuns). But some of the more literal interpreters


Well, they are still Dharmaguptaka nuns. You cannot mix monastic ordination lineages.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby tobes » Mon Jun 06, 2011 2:34 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:I believe that the term "fundamentalism" has come to mean something different in our society (though it includes the definition you have offered) and that is a tenacious grasping to ones tenents or system of belief as the only valid form of truth and a denigration of all other belief systems, in which case I believe that I have met (and continue to meet) a number of Buddhist fundamentalists.
:namaste:


I like this. I think to some extent, being human, it is so hard not to be a fundamentalist. Only the greats and the truly wise find a way out.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 06, 2011 2:44 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:I believe that the term "fundamentalism" has come to mean something different in our society (though it includes the definition you have offered) and that is a tenacious grasping to ones tenents or system of belief as the only valid form of truth and a denigration of all other belief systems, in which case I believe that I have met (and continue to meet) a number of Buddhist fundamentalists.
:namaste:


By that token then, you would assert the Buddha was a "fundamentalist" since he was clear there was no liberation at all outside of his dharma and vinaya.

N
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby adinatha » Mon Jun 06, 2011 3:20 pm

I am a Buddhist fundamentalist. Every single sentient being has buddha-nature, but only this human life may be put to any good use. This prison of samsara may only be opened by Three Jewels. All phenomena are absolutely impermanent. Samsara is utterly meaningless without a single exception and nothing but endless suffering no matter what you do. Karma is an irrevocable law. Maitri and bodhichitta are the only bliss in the universe. Only by taking refuge and precepts, may one engage in the Six Paramitas, traverse the paths and bhumis and be liberated into the nature of ultimate bodhichitta.

These can be rounded up to the pith with the foremost instructions of the master, but these truths are without exception the only way to live without suffering. Simply put the Four Noble Truths are absolutes.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby pueraeternus » Mon Jun 06, 2011 3:44 pm

Namdrol wrote:
David N. Snyder wrote:
A recent example is over the bhikkhuni issue in Theravada and the bhikkshuni issue in Tibetan Buddhism. For some, it has been felt that the female nun lineage cannot be reinstated since there are no female nuns to ordain the new novices. But this is mistaken when considering that the Dharmaguptaka line has remained unbroken and nuns from that lineage can be used (and in fact have been used and today there are over 1,000 Theravada and Tibetan nuns). But some of the more literal interpreters


Well, they are still Dharmaguptaka nuns. You cannot mix monastic ordination lineages.


What is the reason for not mixing the ordination lineages? Would a Dharmagupta nun be hindered in practicing Mahaviharin praxis? Also, would non-Mulasarvastivadin nuns be prevented from practicing Mahayana/Vajrayana?
When I set out to lead humanity along my Golden Path I promised a lesson their bones would remember. I know a profound pattern humans deny with words even while their actions affirm it. They say they seek security and quiet, conditions they call peace. Even as they speak, they create seeds of turmoil and violence.

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 06, 2011 3:59 pm

pueraeternus wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
David N. Snyder wrote:
A recent example is over the bhikkhuni issue in Theravada and the bhikkshuni issue in Tibetan Buddhism. For some, it has been felt that the female nun lineage cannot be reinstated since there are no female nuns to ordain the new novices. But this is mistaken when considering that the Dharmaguptaka line has remained unbroken and nuns from that lineage can be used (and in fact have been used and today there are over 1,000 Theravada and Tibetan nuns). But some of the more literal interpreters


Well, they are still Dharmaguptaka nuns. You cannot mix monastic ordination lineages.


What is the reason for not mixing the ordination lineages? Would a Dharmagupta nun be hindered in practicing Mahaviharin praxis? Also, would non-Mulasarvastivadin nuns be prevented from practicing Mahayana/Vajrayana?


It has to do with the way the different ways different schools conduct rites of ordination. They cannot be mixed.

N
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby pueraeternus » Mon Jun 06, 2011 4:26 pm

Namdrol wrote:It has to do with the way the different ways different schools conduct rites of ordination. They cannot be mixed.

N


Could you quote just a brief example? Just trying to understand the various reasonings from different angles.
When I set out to lead humanity along my Golden Path I promised a lesson their bones would remember. I know a profound pattern humans deny with words even while their actions affirm it. They say they seek security and quiet, conditions they call peace. Even as they speak, they create seeds of turmoil and violence.

- Leto II, the God Emperor
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Jun 06, 2011 4:42 pm

Namdrol wrote:By that token then, you would assert the Buddha was a "fundamentalist" since he was clear there was no liberation at all outside of his dharma and vinaya.

N
The Buddha was not a "Buddhist" and anyway how much of the Buddhas word (the existing Buddhadharma) was his own words or mere embellishments over 2500 years is a little hard to gauge. I would even dare to add that how much of the vinaya (as it stands) is conducive to liberation or not is also a matter of debate.

Possibly (yes that was a disclaimer) clinging to Vinaya and Buddhadharma can become an obstacle to liberation IF the intention behind the clinging is merely an attempt to bolster ones sense of self. It would fall into the wrong view of clinging to rites and rituals as a source of liberation. I believe that you might admit that we see this amongst Buddhists quite often.
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"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 06, 2011 4:44 pm

pueraeternus wrote:
Namdrol wrote:It has to do with the way the different ways different schools conduct rites of ordination. They cannot be mixed.

N


Could you quote just a brief example? Just trying to understand the various reasonings from different angles.


I mean that procedures and so on for each of the ordination lineages is different. They could only be integrated is all of the Vinayadharas decided to consolidate the three remaining ordination lineages. And that won't happen.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jun 06, 2011 4:50 pm

gregkavarnos wrote: It would fall into the wrong view of clinging to rites and rituals as a source of liberation. I believe that you might admit that we see this amongst Buddhists quite often.
:namaste:



Clinging to rites and rituals is a criticism of Vedic practice and certain kinds of acetic practices like standing on one leg for whole life.

It does not refer to Vinaya.

N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby pueraeternus » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:00 pm

Namdrol wrote:
pueraeternus wrote:
Namdrol wrote:It has to do with the way the different ways different schools conduct rites of ordination. They cannot be mixed.

N


Could you quote just a brief example? Just trying to understand the various reasonings from different angles.


I mean that procedures and so on for each of the ordination lineages is different. They could only be integrated is all of the Vinayadharas decided to consolidate the three remaining ordination lineages. And that won't happen.


Thanks Namdrol. Still can't see how the technicalities of one ordination could hinder practice of another lineage's praxis, but I understand if it's too technical to go into details here.
When I set out to lead humanity along my Golden Path I promised a lesson their bones would remember. I know a profound pattern humans deny with words even while their actions affirm it. They say they seek security and quiet, conditions they call peace. Even as they speak, they create seeds of turmoil and violence.

- Leto II, the God Emperor
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:29 pm

Namdrol wrote:Clinging to rites and rituals is a criticism of Vedic practice and certain kinds of acetic practices like standing on one leg for whole life.

It does not refer to Vinaya.

N
I agree that this may be the case when it was formulated but I suspect that many current "Buddhist" practices would fall into this category if the Buddha were around right now and saw how everything had worked out 2500 years later! Even at his Mahaparinirvana he alluded that maybe they could do away with some of the minor rules and regulations. But anyway, I was more referring to something along the lines of:
Not by a shaven head does an undisciplined man, who utters lies, become
a monk. How will one who is full of desire and greed be a monk?

10. He who wholly subdues evil deeds both small and great is called a monk
because he has overcome all evil.
Dhammapada 264 and 265 http://www.aimwell.org/assets/Dhammapada.pdf
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Kyosan » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:56 pm

Namdrol wrote:Clinging to rites and rituals is a criticism of Vedic practice and certain kinds of acetic practices like standing on one leg for whole life.

It does not refer to Vinaya.

N

Clinging to Vinaya can be a hindrance, in the same way that clinging to myriads of others things can be a hindrance.
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