Buddhist fundamentalists?

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:03 pm

pueraeternus wrote:
Namdrol wrote:The key point is this: the Mūlasatvastivadas, the Theravadins and the Dharmaguptakas all have their own Vinaya tradition. They are not interchangeable, though some wish it were so.

Traditionally, each vinaya tradition came from one of Buddha's arhat disciples. So for example, Mulasarvastivada came from Rahula; Thervada from Upali, and so on.

Each vinaya has its own oral tradition and explanations of the vows, as well as procedures for ordination. They are not interchangeable.


Just a thought: in all the sutric accounts of the Buddha's parinirvana, he said the sangha is free to remove the minor rules if they so wish after his death. This would mean he gave the permission to alter the vinaya. Would this be a valid reason to recreate the Theravadin and Mulsarvastivadin bhikshuni lineage by altering the existing bhikshu vinaya vows of the respective sects?


The Buddha never told Ananda which minor rules. Therefore, no one ever removed any.

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby pueraeternus » Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:10 pm

Namdrol wrote:
pueraeternus wrote:
Namdrol wrote:The key point is this: the Mūlasatvastivadas, the Theravadins and the Dharmaguptakas all have their own Vinaya tradition. They are not interchangeable, though some wish it were so.

Traditionally, each vinaya tradition came from one of Buddha's arhat disciples. So for example, Mulasarvastivada came from Rahula; Thervada from Upali, and so on.

Each vinaya has its own oral tradition and explanations of the vows, as well as procedures for ordination. They are not interchangeable.


Just a thought: in all the sutric accounts of the Buddha's parinirvana, he said the sangha is free to remove the minor rules if they so wish after his death. This would mean he gave the permission to alter the vinaya. Would this be a valid reason to recreate the Theravadin and Mulsarvastivadin bhikshuni lineage by altering the existing bhikshu vinaya vows of the respective sects?


The Buddha never told Ananda which minor rules. Therefore, no one ever removed any.

N


So it may be the case it depends on how bold the current elders of the remaining traditions are - they could take it upon themselves to agree to changes in the minor rules based on that statement by the Buddha, and do not necessarily have to consult other traditions. But alas, even that is probably doomed due to weakness of heart - if the transmission is destroyed due to that, they will have brought upon the end of the sasana by their hand. And they won't know either way until their current life ends.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:08 pm

Namdrol wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Everything is useless if you don't learn from it.



Yes, so you must take your own advice.


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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:32 pm

This discussion reminds me of my original post, a question of 'buddhist fundamentalism' because, if we are talking about why one tradition is incompatible with another, and someone brings up, "Well, Buddha said this...." there is a sort of irony, aside from the fact that nobody knows exactly what the Buddha said, and what the context of that very moment was on that particular day some 2500 years ago. This is what I see as 'fundamentalism'.

The irony is this:
1. If what the Buddha taught, if the dharma he explained can bring a person to the same realization that he had (and you can call it nirvana or end of samsara or liberation from dukkha or enlightenment or peppermint or any word you want, I think I'll use 'realization' here) then his teachings are valid. If they can't a person to the same realization, then they are essentially useless, or at least not worth disagreeing over.

2. This can only be determined if in fact, by following his teachings, others have attained 'realization' . Most buddhists believe that there are others who have attained 'realization' in these 2500 years, whether they be roshis, ajahns, rinpoches or whatever. If not, then again, these disagreements would not be worth the effort.

3. If (we assume that) 'realization' is 'realization' , meaning that it is essentially one 'realization' and thus the same for anyone who attains it, then whatever is taught or transmitted

(through refuge, lay vows, vinaya, precepts, empowerments, blessings and cosmic sneezes)

are just as valid
(if received from a tradition which has been able to effectively preserve and replicate this 'realization')

--as if the Buddha had given them himself. It's like a vaccine: If it really works, then any licensed doctor can administer it.

4. If we assert that only those words which we believe were spoken by the Buddha are the only valid teachings, then aren't we essentially denying that anyone else has ever attained the Buddha's 'realization' ?

Unless someone might have an allergic reaction to taking vows or precepts, I think they should be given to those who want them, and let them get on with the business of keeping them.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby catmoon » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:16 pm

Astus wrote:
Namdrol wrote:All the vows come from the Buddha, they are just different transmissions.


Since the vows are different the transmissions are corrupted - .


That statement assumes that there can be only a single correct set of vows. I'd like to point out that the vows changed even within the time of Buddha's teaching. Vows are supposed to be a flexible adaptation to circumstances. They are as impermanent as the problems they attempt to deal with.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:07 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Unless someone might have an allergic reaction to taking vows or precepts, I think they should be given to those who want them, and let them get on with the business of keeping them.


Sure, providing they come from a living lineage.

N
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

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he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby mudra » Thu Jun 09, 2011 1:23 am

A vow is something which arises in the mind in reliance on several factors, it needs a basis.

If you take a vow to uphold the practices pertaining to a certain lineage, if you did not receive them from a living and unbroken lineage, how is this supposed to arise within the mind? If it is broken, it is obviously no longer a a viable lineage.

Other vows need other types of basis: a simple case is the bodhisattva vow. Without refuge - complete confidence in the Buddha's teachings, then such a vow cannot arise.

These are 'true fundamentals'. But the present day connotation of 'fundamentalist' is somehow confused with this. The negative 'fundamentalists' are those who do not tolerate others' views. If someone wants to be something else, why not, please by all means. But don't call it or assume it to be the same thing, that is confusion.

Just because one refuses to acknowledge that a mango tree arises from a chili seed doesn't make one a 'negative fundamentalist'. It's when one thinks there should only be mango trees (or chili bushes) that one commits a grave error.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Thu Jun 09, 2011 2:36 am

mudra wrote:
These are 'true fundamentals'. But the present day connotation of 'fundamentalist' is somehow confused with this. The negative 'fundamentalists' are those who do not tolerate others' views. If someone wants to be something else, why not, please by all means. But don't call it or assume it to be the same thing, that is confusion.

Just because one refuses to acknowledge that a mango tree arises from a chili seed doesn't make one a 'negative fundamentalist'. It's when one thinks there should only be mango trees (or chili bushes) that one commits a grave error.

Couldn't agree more.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Thu Jun 09, 2011 2:54 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote:This discussion reminds me of my original post, a question of 'buddhist fundamentalism' because, if we are talking about why one tradition is incompatible with another, and someone brings up, "Well, Buddha said this...." there is a sort of irony, aside from the fact that nobody knows exactly what the Buddha said, and what the context of that very moment was on that particular day some 2500 years ago. This is what I see as 'fundamentalism'.

The irony is this:
1. If what the Buddha taught, if the dharma he explained can bring a person to the same realization that he had (and you can call it nirvana or end of samsara or liberation from dukkha or enlightenment or peppermint or any word you want, I think I'll use 'realization' here) then his teachings are valid. If they can't a person to the same realization, then they are essentially useless, or at least not worth disagreeing over.

2. This can only be determined if in fact, by following his teachings, others have attained 'realization' . Most buddhists believe that there are others who have attained 'realization' in these 2500 years, whether they be roshis, ajahns, rinpoches or whatever. If not, then again, these disagreements would not be worth the effort.

3. If (we assume that) 'realization' is 'realization' , meaning that it is essentially one 'realization' and thus the same for anyone who attains it, then whatever is taught or transmitted

(through refuge, lay vows, vinaya, precepts, empowerments, blessings and cosmic sneezes)

are just as valid
(if received from a tradition which has been able to effectively preserve and replicate this 'realization')

--as if the Buddha had given them himself. It's like a vaccine: If it really works, then any licensed doctor can administer it.

4. If we assert that only those words which we believe were spoken by the Buddha are the only valid teachings, then aren't we essentially denying that anyone else has ever attained the Buddha's 'realization' ?

Unless someone might have an allergic reaction to taking vows or precepts, I think they should be given to those who want them, and let them get on with the business of keeping them.

Let me give you an example that may help you to understand. Imagine you want to go from A to B. There are several paths to get from one point to another.
One goes through a plane desert and takes longer. Another goes through a dense forest and it's a little faster. The last one is a shortcut that goes through high freezing mountains and it's the fastest of them all.

Fundamentalism would be saying that only going through the forest (or any other of the presented routes) takes you from A to B. Fundamentalism would also be saying that traversing the desert would be the best path for everyone. Fundamentalism would also be saying that for all people it's faster going through the mountains.

All these paths take you from A to B; not everyone deals well with extreme heat; not everyone can climb mountains. So, the best path is the one that takes you, with all your strengths and weaknesses, faster from A to B.

Now, A is samsara and B is Nirvana, as you figured already. The different routes represent the different turnings of the wheel of Dharma or different approaches to the Buddhadharma in general (lay practitioner vs ordained). Each person has it's own karma and that is what allows choosing which path is best. Let's assume I'm not very athletic. Perhaps going through a plane is easier. If I think, "well, but the mountain route is faster" and I decide to go there, I may get stuck in a very tricky situation. It may take many lives for me to get out of that mountain, more than would take if I had decided crossing the desert planes.

Now, let's assume I decide to cross the mountain. There's a lot of gear I need and surely that gear is not the same I would use to cross the forest or the planes. Saying that any gear will do, since all paths lead from A to B is pretty dumb. So, Buddha and subsequent masters taught many things, but we can't mix them without skill and expect them to work. If you are a monk, you can't keep your vows and practice karmamudra. If you practice Dzogchen, having a sutric approach will hinder your path. These are just examples. Each path has its methods and these things, even if having some flexibility, aren't all interchangeable.

So if your capacities are best suited to cross the forest you shouldn't go through the mountains equipped with desert gear. Do you get what I'm saying?
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:08 am

Dechen Norbu wrote:So if your capacities are best suited to cross the forest you shouldn't go through the mountains equipped with desert gear. Do you get what I'm saying?


That is expressed beautifully.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:12 am

Namdrol wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Unless someone might have an allergic reaction to taking vows or precepts, I think they should be given to those who want them, and let them get on with the business of keeping them.


Sure, providing they come from a living lineage.

N


What lineage did Sakyamuni come from?
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:17 am

I'm lazy :lol: so I'll quote wiki. caveat emptor, but it should answer your question:

Samyaksambuddhas (Pali: sammasambuddha) gain Nirvana by their own efforts, and discover the Dhamma without having a teacher to point it out. They then lead others to enlightenment by teaching the Dhamma in a time or world where it has been forgotten or has not been taught before, because a Samyaksambuddha does not depend upon a tradition that stretches back to a previous Samyaksambuddha, but instead discovers the path anew.[2] The historical Buddha, Gautama Buddha, is considered a Samyaksambuddha. See also the list of 28 sammasambuddhas.

Unless one is a Samyaksambuddha, one needs a living lineage.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:29 am

Dechen Norbu wrote: Unless one is a Samyaksambuddha, one needs a living lineage.


Yes, of course. So, living lineages need to make some adjustments, because sentient beings are relying on them.
When a person takes refuge, or vows, or precepts, is it with their mind or their genitals? I know it is with body, speech & mind, but I hope it's mostly with the mind, or else my weenie has a lot of bowing to catch up on.
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jun 09, 2011 3:31 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Unless someone might have an allergic reaction to taking vows or precepts, I think they should be given to those who want them, and let them get on with the business of keeping them.


Sure, providing they come from a living lineage.

N


What lineage did Sakyamuni come from?


That all depends upon which yāna you are considering. Which account would you like?

N
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Thu Jun 09, 2011 3:34 pm

Namdrol wrote:
That all depends upon which yāna you are considering. Which account would you like?

N


How about Baton Rouge, Louisiyana?
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PMTF » Sun Jun 12, 2011 5:37 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote: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.

hi PadmaVonSamba

your pleas & exhortations to 'open-mindedness' are starting to sound rather intolerant & fundamentalist.

take care with "dogma". it comes in many forms

kindly :namaste:
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jun 12, 2011 5:44 am

PMTF wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote: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.


hi PadmaVonSamba

your pleas & exhortations to 'open-mindedness' are starting to sound rather intolerant & fundamentalist.

take care with "dogma". it comes in many forms

kindly :namaste:


well, I said "can be" and basically pieced this definition together from two reference sources.
My effort was to offer a context of usage for the word, not to assert that this is its only usage.
All of the statements, if you read them carefully, are true. I have broken the quote into separate lines for your inspection.

i didn't know that I had pleaded for anything. Perhaps you have me confused with somebody else inside your computer?
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PMTF » Sun Jun 12, 2011 6:16 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote:All of the statements, if you read them carefully, are true.

Please refer to my previous post.

:thanks:
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jun 12, 2011 1:24 pm

PMTF wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:All of the statements, if you read them carefully, are true.

Please refer to my previous post.

:thanks:

I make no claims.
I said "can be", "often" and "generally" for a reason.
Not because it is my position, but because these views do sometimes occur.
The fact that these views occur is...well...a fact.
Please explain to me what you mean because I don't understand. What specifically are you referring to?

So, I guess that I was asking whether people who practice dharma may become unable to see things from another person's point of view.

Maybe you answered my question!!! :applause:
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Re: Buddhist fundamentalists?

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:18 pm

Namdrol wrote:That all depends upon which yāna you are considering. Which account would you like?


Buddhayana

:tongue:
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