Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

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Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Luke » Fri Apr 23, 2010 1:07 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSm7BcQHWXk&NR=1

I wonder if the monkeys accumulate bad karma by stealing drinks, or if they are "immune" from the negative karmic effects of stealing because they are animals (sort of like I've heard that lions don't accumulate any extra negative karma because they have to eat meat)?
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Huifeng » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:03 am

Luke wrote:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSm7BcQHWXk&NR=1

I wonder if the monkeys accumulate bad karma by stealing drinks, or if they are "immune" from the negative karmic effects of stealing because they are animals (sort of like I've heard that lions don't accumulate any extra negative karma because they have to eat meat)?


Some say that only human "make" karma. They suggest that animals and the like only act out of "instincts".

I don't buy it. I've never seen a classic Buddhist text make such a distinction that "instincts" are somehow different from karma.

What is the root of karma, after all? Greed, aversion, ignorance. Seems like animals have a lot of these. How is the aggression of an animal any different from that of a human being?

The argument that "they do not know, therefore it is not karma", also seems strange. After all, not knowing is just ignorance. This actually makes bad karma worse, rather than somehow "nullifying" it.

That's my take.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:46 am

Greetings bhante,

I agree with your assessment.

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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Indrajala » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:32 am

This monkey stole my bag of peanuts:

Image

His intention I gather was to take forcefully from me what he thought would satisfy his hunger.

The sad thing is that I was willing to give them away freely, but he didn't care to share with his friends it seems.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Luke » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:28 am

Huifeng wrote:Some say that only human "make" karma. They suggest that animals and the like only act out of "instincts".

I don't buy it. I've never seen a classic Buddhist text make such a distinction that "instincts" are somehow different from karma.

What is the root of karma, after all? Greed, aversion, ignorance. Seems like animals have a lot of these. How is the aggression of an animal any different from that of a human being?

The argument that "they do not know, therefore it is not karma", also seems strange. After all, not knowing is just ignorance. This actually makes bad karma worse, rather than somehow "nullifying" it.

That's my take.

Interesting. Then do meat-eating animals accumulate bad karma every time they eat meat (whether they killed the animal or not)?

Is it possible for animals to create good karma? Or do they just have to wait for some of their bad karma to "expire" before they can be reborn in a higher realm?
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:43 am

Greetings,

Luke wrote:Is it possible for animals to create good karma?


To know that for sure, you would need to be able to read the mind-states of an animal, or at least know what motivates them to do what they do. Do they feed their young out of selfless love or compassion, or is it out of some possessive greed and desire to continue their lineage?

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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby ball-of-string » Sat Apr 24, 2010 5:52 pm

In the jataka stories, we learn of Buddha's previous births as animals, and as an animal he is able to generate merit.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Huifeng » Sun Apr 25, 2010 3:03 am

Luke wrote:
Huifeng wrote:Some say that only human "make" karma. They suggest that animals and the like only act out of "instincts".

I don't buy it. I've never seen a classic Buddhist text make such a distinction that "instincts" are somehow different from karma.

What is the root of karma, after all? Greed, aversion, ignorance. Seems like animals have a lot of these. How is the aggression of an animal any different from that of a human being?

The argument that "they do not know, therefore it is not karma", also seems strange. After all, not knowing is just ignorance. This actually makes bad karma worse, rather than somehow "nullifying" it.

That's my take.

Interesting. Then do meat-eating animals accumulate bad karma every time they eat meat (whether they killed the animal or not)?

Is it possible for animals to create good karma? Or do they just have to wait for some of their bad karma to "expire" before they can be reborn in a higher realm?


I don't know why one would specifically single out eating meat, of all things. Any sort of eating with greed, aversion etc. is creating karma. Killing the prey almost always involves some aggression and may some greed, too.

I think that some animals possibly could. There may be some real love for their offspring. More intelligent animals can and do perform very wholesome acts. eg. the dog who rescues it's owner from a burning building.

But on the whole, they probably create more unwholesome than wholesome. This is the problem, once out of a human rebirth, where one may have the intelligence and insight to know what wholesome acts are, one mainly commits unwholesome deeds driven by defilements. Result - the downward spiral into lower rebirths.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Luke » Sat May 15, 2010 11:39 am

Huifeng wrote:But on the whole, they probably create more unwholesome than wholesome. This is the problem, once out of a human rebirth, where one may have the intelligence and insight to know what wholesome acts are, one mainly commits unwholesome deeds driven by defilements. Result - the downward spiral into lower rebirths.


What is the best way to help these less fortunate non-human beings out of this downward spiral? To dedicate the merits accumulated from my meditations to them? To chant mantras in their presence?
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Ngawang Drolma » Sat May 15, 2010 5:19 pm

I think dedicating merit is good :)
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby justsit » Sat May 15, 2010 7:09 pm

Advice from Lama Zopa on benefiting animals here.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby muni » Sun May 16, 2010 10:26 am

Thank you so for that webside! :anjali:

Here is a small dog and a big one. The small is suffering from jealousy, he cannot see the rabbit get a carrot, he must steal it (almost as quick as a monkey). Slowly I praise him to be so kind while he must sit by me and just look how rabbit eats. It works.
The big dog is generous. He don't steal and brings toys to all animals. Rabbit gets regullarly his huge toy bear. First time rabbit got that thing in front of his nose, he ran in high speed for the safety of his life.

Teaching animals.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Luke » Sun May 16, 2010 12:17 pm

That's so cute, Muni! Thank you for sharing. :D
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Aemilius » Fri Jul 23, 2010 8:21 am

"Stealing"??? Who made the laws that humans own everything ?
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby ronnewmexico » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:46 pm

I agree as has been stated here....animals are no differing from humans in this thing of karma. Ignorance is the forebearer of their state, ours is perhaps other, with ignorance as undertone.

Humans continually cause harm just by living. We for instance have mites that live in the hair foliciles on our skin and in our eyelids. Undoubtably with the scratching of a itch in these places we do indeed kill some. And how many times do we scratch a itch in such places daily.....many.

I can easily see those in the godly realm looking upon poor humans and the death and destruction they are causing just by living in the fashion they do(looking perhaps at the mites) and stateing as we perhaps may of a lion....well it is just their lot to cause such things, that is why they in the main never advance to our state so sorry and painful is their lot.
Could blame it on instinct I'd guess...one may say to another.... see they have this instinct to scratch.

And not to mention various bacteria and microbes that invariably die when we perform simple digestive functions and the small small bugs killed in the harvest of any sort of fruit or vegetable or grain even if one is the strictest of vegans.

This is no rational to not seek to perform lesser or least harm but it is invariably true we cause harm just by living as humans.

This is why we seek enlightenment not just for our own sake but for others we harm in the gross form.

Karma.....no sentient being to my opinion is free from karma. If sense of self is present, even present in the most minimal form, as a amoeba may seek to advert a prick, karma is at play.
Animals however can be directed as muni suggests to a more cerebral way of looking at things with time and effort. As such animals can rebirth as humans and humans can rebirth as animals given propensity to cultivate the baser aspects of the human reality. When we die it seems the habit or tendency to act determins rebirth for most. There is no guarantee we remain human nor god nor animal. Some humans it may be observed, the karma that allows them to rebirth as humans presently is quickly expireing due to bad deeds and as such it may be observed they obtain the characteristics most closely associated with the animal realm, a life characterized by greed overt ignorance and baser desires that must be saitiated. Animals much as we like to romanticize our companions in this realm are always ignorant as predominant aspect and this ignorance leads to their birth as animals. While we are ignorant we have other predominance coupled with a compassionate aspect that directs our tendencies to a human birth.

YOu want to assure a human future rebirth....act compassionately that is all.
YOu want to assure a animal rebirth....act ignorantly in all things that is all.

Monkeys are not very far from us. To give or allow them to steal such a thing...probably produces a bad result for the monkey. It should not be done, expecially not to entertain humans. That would be particularly bad for the human as well as monkey.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Aemilius » Mon Jul 26, 2010 9:12 am

ronnewmexico wrote:I agree as has been stated here....animals are no differing from humans in this thing of karma. Ignorance is the forebearer of their state, ours is perhaps other, with ignorance as undertone.

Humans continually cause harm just by living. We for instance have mites that live in the hair foliciles on our skin and in our eyelids. Undoubtably with the scratching of a itch in these places we do indeed kill some. And how many times do we scratch a itch in such places daily.....many.

I can easily see those in the godly realm looking upon poor humans and the death and destruction they are causing just by living in the fashion they do(looking perhaps at the mites) and stateing as we perhaps may of a lion....well it is just their lot to cause such things, that is why they in the main never advance to our state so sorry and painful is their lot.
Could blame it on instinct I'd guess...one may say to another.... see they have this instinct to scratch.

And not to mention various bacteria and microbes that invariably die when we perform simple digestive functions and the small small bugs killed in the harvest of any sort of fruit or vegetable or grain even if one is the strictest of vegans.

This is no rational to not seek to perform lesser or least harm but it is invariably true we cause harm just by living as humans.

This is why we seek enlightenment not just for our own sake but for others we harm in the gross form.

Karma.....no sentient being to my opinion is free from karma. If sense of self is present, even present in the most minimal form, as a amoeba may seek to advert a prick, karma is at play.
Animals however can be directed as muni suggests to a more cerebral way of looking at things with time and effort. As such animals can rebirth as humans and humans can rebirth as animals given propensity to cultivate the baser aspects of the human reality. When we die it seems the habit or tendency to act determins rebirth for most. There is no guarantee we remain human nor god nor animal. Some humans it may be observed, the karma that allows them to rebirth as humans presently is quickly expireing due to bad deeds and as such it may be observed they obtain the characteristics most closely associated with the animal realm, a life characterized by greed overt ignorance and baser desires that must be saitiated. Animals much as we like to romanticize our companions in this realm are always ignorant as predominant aspect and this ignorance leads to their birth as animals. While we are ignorant we have other predominance coupled with a compassionate aspect that directs our tendencies to a human birth.

YOu want to assure a human future rebirth....act compassionately that is all.
YOu want to assure a animal rebirth....act ignorantly in all things that is all.

Monkeys are not very far from us. To give or allow them to steal such a thing...probably produces a bad result for the monkey. It should not be done, expecially not to entertain humans. That would be particularly bad for the human as well as monkey.




You have to realize that "ownership" is humanmade, it is based on who has the most terrible weapons, etc...
There are studies in the field of biology about the principles that animals have that correspond to "ownership". There is no "stealing" before you have a consensus in the society about ownership. Ownership is based on need.

An obvious example are the cultivated fields that humans have, do they not constitute stealing from many other species of life ?
This example exists in the buddhist history of the world, according to which long ago humans lived on a higher level, where cultivation of land had not yet appeared. This legendary account of the beginning of the world period also explains how stealing appears!
You can find it in several sutras of the Hinayana, and also in the books of Abhidharma.

About karma: it has been defined, by Guru Rimpoche and elsewhere, that a karmic deed requires consciousness and decision. If your purpose is to wash yourself in order not to be unpleasant to others, it is a karmic deed. The killing of some tiny creatures was not your intention and your purpose in your washing, and therefore this latter aspect does not create karma.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby ronnewmexico » Mon Jul 26, 2010 6:22 pm

Sorry no no no

Karma creation does not require a willed intent to establish. It requires only self concept even if very rudimental to establish. I could establish any number of reference to this if I so desired but it would most likely be a effort in futility. Research it yourself or study it yourself through meditational means.

It is literally defined as action....as in one act becomes another, cause and effect. And animals and other sentient beings do indeed establish karma as we do, this accounts for their unfortunate state. That may be karma as defined by some belief system Hindu or some such I don't claim to know, but karma as it works does indeed involve all actions and result of actions when self is established. If a animal averts or attaches likes or dislikes some things as opposed to others or any being for that matter we can conclude self concept is established. Even though perhaps very minutely by our consideration. This is the motion of the wheel what establishes karma as opposed to simple mechanical action. What makes it all go this wheel of delusion, self concept, or identity. It starts with like dislike extends to self other, object subject and on from there to establish birth and death. Animals are not exempt from that cycle of things in samsara. All sentinent beings are equal in that. If it can suffer it has a sense of singular identity. So this is how we qualify what is sentient from what is inert, not by basis of animal or human nor thoughful nor not, or what we call counscious or instinctual behavior.....if it can suffer(avert) it is a sentinet being the same as us.

Karma is stronger or has stronger effect if willed or intended, much stronger. But even unwilled actions are action and have result. REsult coupled with sense of self in even a very basic form is what precipitates what we call karma. That we are complex and they more simple infers no such thing as no karma. The idea that animals are fundamentally different than humans is totally untrue. They are the same. In hindu and other faiths christianity and such they are not as we are. HIndus very often do not believe animals can reincarnate as human or humans as animals. I make no statement on their beliefs and the value of those beliefs to humans as religious aspect..... but find them not true. False completely.

As to stealing, the romantic idea animals are pure and do no such things as stealing being greedy or selfish is entirely nonsense. If you watch monkey or some animal closely related to us, (though this is found in virtually all animals as ignorant displayal).....they will really actually commonly steal from one and other daily. A piece of food is put on the ground for one monkey if that monkey is distracted another will come and steal it and eat it. It is pure and simple stealing and readily obvious. I have dogs and they do this same thing continually, those that have the inclination. Some like humans are not so inclined but most due to ignorance do daily. The advent of agriculture as accountable and the inferal that humans were once pure and did no things like steal and be greedy...interesting and entertaining but simply again not the truth of the matter. Human Beings were greedy and stole various thngs way way before the advent of agriculture and this is obvious today in study of the rare rare event of hunter gatherer people that still do exist today. They are simply not berift of the defilements of humans by their occupations.

So very sorry but no no no.

No offense but where do you get this stuff....."There is no "stealing" before you have a consensus in the society about ownership." In a court of law I'd guess. LIfe is not a court of law nor is karma so determined by a court of law nor personal opinion of what constitutes it....
"This order considers that progress can be achieved more rapidly during a single month of self-transformation through terrifying conditions in rough terrain and in "the abode of harmful forces" than through meditating for a period of three years in towns and monasteries"....Takpo Tashi Namgyal.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Aemilius » Wed Jul 28, 2010 9:08 am

Where do I get it from ? Karma ?
1. For example John Myrdhin Reynolds has a good description of karma in his book "Self Liberation Through Seeing With Naked Awareness".
2. When I wrote it I was mainly thinking of Guru Rimpoche's description of karma that is in "Dakini Teachings".
3. Vasubandhu's Karma Siddhi Prakarana ( Discussion For the Demonstration of Action). Which is good but requires some concentrated study.
4. Nagarjuna quotes in Mulamadhyamaka Karika a definition of karma which is short and precice: "Karma is will and what is willed ( acts of speech and body)".
5. Then there are various works that are based on theravada sources on karma, these are numerous,... and ofcourse the Theravada Suttas themselves where karma is discussed,

Buddha himself refutes the notion that "everything is karma", as does Vasubandhu and Guru Rimpoche in above mentioned works.
In some texts it has been explained that there are other levels of causality than the karmic one.


I don't mean to say that animals do not steal, I only say that their sense of moral action is different from the human one, which is also most varied in different areas and different groups of people!

You should study the sutras or suttas that describe the beginning of the world period or the kalpa. They clearly described how ownership etc gradually develop.

The idea that stealing manifests when there is ownership, has been expressed numerous times in european philosophy !!!

with best wishes !!
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby ronnewmexico » Wed Jul 28, 2010 6:20 pm

Yeah...best wishes...geeze louise.

You are representing partial facts about things and partial understandings.
Karma does not of course comprise simple cause and result, as I state it involves...

Self

Self it is that inspires karma and karmic effect. Anything with sense of self has as result karma. That is why some consider a Buddha may not generate karma, he/she is considered to not have a sense of self as we know self to be. That is why a tree is not though to be a sentient being nor accumulate karma...it is thought to have no sense of self.

I will not provide literature directly quoted which shows this as fact....it would be time wasted. I would suggest you may care to study literature that directly addresses this thing of karma and meditate upon it's statements.

Yes stealing in a philosophical or theoritical or legal sense is quite involved. In a conventional sense the realm we live in as do the monkey.... stealing is taking what is owned by another without their permisssion.

I may be sitting in a forest eating a sandwich. Someone is there with me. That person is hungry. He distracts me by stateing he sees a bear behind my head. I turn around quickly and drop the sandwich. There is no bear there. He picks up and eats the sandwich.That is stealing and monkeys do the equilivent(most of them)...every day.

Such stealing karmically is bad for monkey though it is not a conscious act as we(human) define it. We think in words. Monkeys dogs cats and such think in pictures. Insects think in linear black and white projections of a sort....

That we do this thing of self in differing fashions does not mean not a bit that no karma is formed by monkeys or any other sentient beings because they do not do things in our fashion.
The same principals are in effect. STudy you own mind the mind of animals and insects and you can easily see such things..... it is not hidden and quite obvious. We within our consciousness have the minds of monkeys insects gods demons and all else. Nothing is simply seperate. As such we may invoke and study each of these things...it is not rocket science and is quite simple.

Any distinction of this sort is a false distinction. Spend more time with the meditation and less with the books perhaps....what you are reading you are reading in the light of delusion. Things may seem to be
said in that fashion, but the context and scope infer other. Some write things in that fashion, some Hindu christians and others....but belief it is, not fact, nor sustained in the findings of the real world of observation.....which is meditation.


Sorry....You are not making sense in this thing.
"This order considers that progress can be achieved more rapidly during a single month of self-transformation through terrifying conditions in rough terrain and in "the abode of harmful forces" than through meditating for a period of three years in towns and monasteries"....Takpo Tashi Namgyal.
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Re: Alcoholic Vervet Monkeys

Postby Aemilius » Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:45 am

According to many buddhists there in fact is no self, "self" is only projected on the skandhas, skandhas change constantly, they consist of parts and are selfless.

I have also watched animals, for example the Blackheaded Gulls, they constantly take food from others, from other gulls and from other bird species, if you call it "stealing" it is a projection of human values on the gull society. You can also see it as their way of life, their way of arranging the food distribution. Karma is the intention in the gulls' consciousness.
Gulls do have some principles, they don't always take food from every single other bird, a gull can stand next to a female duck that has little kids with it, and then suddenly it doesn't take its food !!

"what is owned by an other" is again a human projection, it does not say on a morsel of food that it is owned by a particular duck, or a crow, or a gull, so who "owns" it ? The idea is only in your mind!
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