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Only in America - Dhamma Wheel

Only in America

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.
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tiltbillings
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Only in America

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:17 am


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ground
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Re: Only in America

Postby ground » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:49 am

Essential is that buddhists do like all people equally.

Kind regards

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octathlon
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Re: Only in America

Postby octathlon » Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:16 am

Only in America? How about in Islamic countries for example?

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Kim OHara
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Re: Only in America

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:55 am


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Ben
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Re: Only in America

Postby Ben » Thu Sep 23, 2010 7:03 am

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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tiltbillings
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Re: Only in America

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:04 am


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tiltbillings
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Re: Only in America

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:26 am


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Phra Chuntawongso
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Re: Only in America

Postby Phra Chuntawongso » Thu Sep 23, 2010 9:21 am

It would be interesting to get Ven.Yuttadhammos take on this as he looks to start up a meditation center in California.
While the Thai population no doubt are happy to have him there,it seems that he has had the occasional brush with the law,due to people reporting his suspicious behavior.It also appears that some"enlightened"beings have forseen his next rebirth in some sort of hell realm. :quote:
And crawling on the planets face,some insects called the human race.
Lost in time
Lost in space
And meaning

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appicchato
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Re: Only in America

Postby appicchato » Thu Sep 23, 2010 9:30 am

I (an American, but who has not lived there for more than thirty years) visited my family in Southern Califonia last year (in robes), and for the most part (other than the gawking at my attire) was ignored...the prevalant acknowledgment being 'Hare Krishna'...the rare 'wai' was warming though...I mention this just in passing...and SoCal is a breed apart...

Was oh so happy to return to Thailand...

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Ben
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Re: Only in America

Postby Ben » Thu Sep 23, 2010 12:00 pm

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

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SDC
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Re: Only in America

Postby SDC » Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:25 pm


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SDC
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Re: Only in America

Postby SDC » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:11 pm


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tiltbillings
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Re: Only in America

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:35 pm


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Monkey Mind
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Re: Only in America

Postby Monkey Mind » Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:00 pm

The dominant culture in America was founded almost simultaneously by Pilgrims [religious extremists who were banned from England] and criminals who sent to convict colonies. Both of these cultures blended together, and eradicated any domestic cultures they encountered along the way. A lot of our oddities can be explained by thinking about these two seemingly contradictory histories. Growing up here, every year in school I would learn how the poor pilgrims were unfairly persecuted by the English, and there was never a mention of the crazy-making these people caused when they were in England. Likewise, there is minimal or nil mention of our more colorful convict ancestors: pirates, murderers, rapists, etc.

I have been interacting with a group of Western Thai monks who have started alms rounds in a very rural, and predominately conservative area. So far they have only encountered a couple of negative comments, much curiosity, and their supporters are growing each week. This completely contradicts any assumptions or stereotypes I had before about American culture, or how said culture would receive Buddhists.
"As I am, so are others;
as others are, so am I."
Having thus identified self and others,
harm no one nor have them harmed.

Sutta Nipāta 3.710

Individual
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Re: Only in America

Postby Individual » Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:35 pm

Don't know about you all, but I'm content with America the way it is and am glad I don't live in a third-world country or face any actual oppression (employment & housing discrimination, violence, etc.). I've never had somebody refuse me something or hurt me in some way because of my religion. If they're ignorant of what I believe or don't like it -- that's OK and it's their right. I'm ignorant of a lot of stuff and don't like a lot of other religions too. When discussing it, people I know are indifferent to Buddhism because they know nothing about it. It is only when I mention I am an Atheist that they are in disbelief, "You're not really an Atheist, are you?" and try to convince me to believe otherwise.

And anyway, Sociology is hardly scientific because it relies on such a high degree of subjective interpretation. Sociologists rely on the epistemological scraps left by the research of other more prestigious fields and then do polls and surveys, and create fancy terminology to feel important; it really can't be taken that seriously. I saw a study a while back which claimed Atheists were the most hated group in America. How the heck do you objectively quantify "how people feel" about Buddhism? You could word the question 10 different ways and end up with 10 different results.
The best things in life aren't things.


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BubbaBuddhist
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Re: Only in America

Postby BubbaBuddhist » Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:10 pm

I find it difficult to speak of Buddhism to non-Buddhists, perhaps because of the parts of the country where I've lived. So I've learned just to not mention it. When I do talk about it the other person becomes confused rather quickly, so there's not much point in it anyway. :lol:

J
Author of Redneck Buddhism: or Will You Reincarnate as Your Own Cousin?

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octathlon
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Re: Only in America

Postby octathlon » Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:42 pm


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Kim OHara
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Re: Only in America

Postby Kim OHara » Fri Sep 24, 2010 12:18 am


Kenshou
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Re: Only in America

Postby Kenshou » Fri Sep 24, 2010 12:34 am


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AdvaitaJ
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Location: Michigan, USA

Re: Only in America

Postby AdvaitaJ » Fri Sep 24, 2010 12:57 am

The U.S. is a fairly big place and has a number of distinct geographical areas with distinct cultural differences. Where I live, the "midwest", people are generally tolerant although I do believe my career advancement potential would cease if my Buddhist practice were to become known at work.

I have also lived "in the South" and have travelled through areas of the country known as "the bible belt". In those areas, you'd be downright foolish to take up a permanent residence and let it be known you're a Buddhist (or a Hindu or a ______). Oh you'd probably be fine in some neighborhoods, even in the bible belt, but there are certainly large areas of the U.S. where vandalism or some form of hate crime would be considered socially acceptable against "one of them" despite being completely illegal.

There is a great deal of ignorance throughout the U.S. as to exactly what Buddhism means. Based on my own experience, I suspect most Americans, if they think about it at all, believe that Buddhists worship the Buddha as some sort of pagan god, believe in reincarnation, and have weird or unnatural secret rituals. The imagination is free to wander when facts are not known and that, I believe, is the best argument for doing something, anything, to help educate (NOT convert) my fellow Americans. Ignorance in this country about an issue as charged as religion can be hazardous to your health.

Regards: Jim
The birds have vanished down the sky. Now the last cloud drains away.
We sit together, the mountain and me, until only the mountain remains.
Li Bai


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