Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Wed May 02, 2012 6:58 pm

As I remember, the five precepts use the word "avoid killing", not "Do not kill" . If I am in extreme pain and no medication can offer me comfort, must I continue this way? - that would be hell on earth! Surely, if I ask someone to put myself out of misery, is it a murder/ killing?- By definition, killing is to take life, correct? What is it then? - It's an act of compassion, certainly there will be no (bad) Karma for someone who helps me.

Buddhism has always been taking middle ground.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Thrasymachus » Thu May 03, 2012 7:53 am

Personally I wouldn't do it. For me ethics and not harming others takes precedence over money and the social status of a job. Helping the military produce research that can allow them to improve soldiering is part of a casual chain that helps them harm, dominate and kill others.

There is a great book that deals with this: Disciplined Minds: A Critical Look at Salaried Professionals and the Soul-battering System That Shapes Their Lives. Jeff Schmidt, the author, is a Physics Phd graduate. He says the way that graduate school is set up, if you look to really develop a general knowledge of your field via self study, you will flunk out. What works, especially in his field is learning the mathematical tricks, shortcuts and selective memorization which you will need to pass the heavy burden of testing. What this does is weed out all the inside oriented people who are autonomous, and selects the externally controlled and motivated who will use their degrees to achieve positions of technocratic management. Regarding research, Schmidt states that the military makes freely available what fields or areas it has interest in. He says that those applying for research grants know this, and the successful ones are good at writing proposals that will capture such funding. Another aspect is that these professionals with certified post-graduate degrees like to consider themselves liberal for their "political" opinions. But that is just theoretical, in reality they are highly conservative and tend to lack a sense of compassion or justice that comes from being able to think outside of the system. Their liberalism disappears where they actually have social power, in their work life, there they tend to be very by the book and undemocratic. Ultimately, what he is saying, is that the system certifies professionals and rewards them with more social power in the workplace, more money, because it knows they have the right attitude and ideology to uphold the system, because they cannot think outside of it, they proved that. Such people feel that the world needs better technocratic managers like them wrangling and haggling over technical details, that the "bad" politicians get in their way. They cannot understand that the whole foundation of our civilization is built on greed, gluttony and vices. Unwelcome Guests converted this work into an audiobook available here.

You have to ask yourself where your priorities are. For example, in the capitalist governing ethos, humans are said to be selfish beings who only seek to maximize their self-interest and profit at the expense of all and everything. If you felt the situation demanded it and you took an ethical stance that led to leaving that job, most people would ostracize you and not be able to empathize, they cannot understand such a position. The question is if you can live with yourself or not for helping the military do its imperialist work.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Nighthawk » Fri May 04, 2012 10:55 am

In the pure land tradition specifically Jodo Shu many have achieved birth in the pure land including warriors, butchers, and fishermen etc.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Fri May 04, 2012 2:41 pm

Also, one thing I want you to see, is that soldiers are not bad people- they are actually good people willing to do what is necessary to protection their country and countryman- including giving up their lives. Soldiers have no say about what they can or can't do, they must follow the orders give by their commanders which by the way come from the politicians. When the 9/11 happened, many people knew what they had to do, some did not come back, many came back w/ PTSD, unfortunately, as we know now that lives have been lost unnecessary in some theater, due to the lack of judgement, or even to profit from situation by certain high-ranking politicians. Remember soldiers are also good father, mother, husband, wife, brother, sister and friend- not the killing robots as you may have been lead to believe. And most soldiers are not combat soldiers, but support units- MP, Lawyer, Doctor,Nurse, IT technician, Supply, Truck driver, Cook or Civil Engineer.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Fri May 04, 2012 4:40 pm

Meditator wrote:And most soldiers are not combat soldiers, but support units- MP, Lawyer, Doctor,Nurse, IT technician, Supply, Truck driver, Cook or Civil Engineer.
Supporting what exactly?
This? (Warning, links to basic google image searches)
http://www.google.gr/search?q=dead+iraq ... 4QSNx9SRCQ
Or this?
http://www.google.gr/search?q=dead+iraq ... 80&bih=685
"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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby deepbluehum » Fri May 04, 2012 6:06 pm

The specific mention of wrong livelihood pertaining your case is engaging in the manufacture and/or sale of weapons for war. You are sort of in a gray area. If you feel you are helping create better killers, I think that would fall into the gray area near black.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Fri May 04, 2012 8:43 pm

http://www.defense.gov/home/features/tsunami/



http://www.defense.gov/home/features/2006/2005yearinreview/article2.html


All bad things are hardly bad, and all good things are hardly good. What exactly is your intention? Why is it necessary for me to worry about what others are doing, when I myself should be following my own path? Must I seek your approval so I can truely be happy w/ myself?

If my path is to be a warrior, then I will fight and die bravely. If my path- a street sweeper, then I will make sure that the grounds are as clean as my bed. If I must give my life so other can live- so be it! Search your heart, and you will find your own answer.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby ronnewmexico » Fri May 04, 2012 8:53 pm

Agreeing with that comment above....

the question always is....is it wrong for us. It is always person, who exactly is doing this living attached to live/li/hood.
To ask the question, If I would so ask the question would be the answer enough for me......why did I ask the question if it right for me?
NEVER would I ask it.

So asking the question it is already found....not right for me. I must then abandon it, it is not for me.

Perhaps all are differing then me..perhaps not.
If different please disregard this comment.
"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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Fri May 04, 2012 9:04 pm

Meditator wrote: All bad things are hardly bad, and all good things are hardly good. What exactly is your intention? Why is it necessary for me to worry about what others are doing, when I myself should be following my own path? Must I seek your approval so I can truely be happy w/ myself?
Nope, just be VERY careful where your path takes you, since you choose your path, will will also have to suffer it's consequences:
"Apparently, headman, I haven't been able to get past you by saying, 'Enough, headman, put that aside. Don't ask me that.' So I will simply answer you. When a warrior strives & exerts himself in battle, his mind is already seized, debased, & misdirected by the thought: 'May these beings be struck down or slaughtered or annihilated or destroyed. May they not exist.' If others then strike him down & slay him while he is thus striving & exerting himself in battle, then with the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in the hell called the realm of those slain in battle. But if he holds such a view as this: 'When a warrior strives & exerts himself in battle, if others then strike him down & slay him while he is striving & exerting himself in battle, then with the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in the company of devas slain in battle,' that is his wrong view. Now, there are two destinations for a person with wrong view, I tell you: either hell or the animal womb."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
If my path is to be a warrior, then I will fight and die bravely. If my path- a street sweeper, then I will make sure that the grounds are as clean as where my bed. If I must give my life so other can live- so be it! Search your heart, and you will find your own answer.
Yawn! Yes, well, I've read the "Perfection of Yoga" too and you know what? It's not a Buddhist teaching. So go and become a street sweeper, that way you will avoid a tonne of suffering and actually do something useful, and if you want to be a warrior then I recommend folowing the teachings given by the Buddha here http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html and here http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Everything is just a testosterone driven (wet) fantasy.
: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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Fri May 04, 2012 9:30 pm

Thank you for your advice. A street sweeper or a warrior- I shall be and only my path can tell. No sorrow and no regret.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sat May 05, 2012 8:34 am

Meditator wrote:Thank you for your advice. A street sweeper or a warrior...
A street sweeper AND a warrior, don't try to bend my words.

... and only my path can tell.
Your "path" cannot tell you anything, how can a path dictate? You dictate (choose) your path, it does not choose you. That is Buddhist karma in a nutshell.

No sorrow and no regret.
And, in closing, "no sorrow and no regret" can also come about as a consequence of delusion and stupidity rather than equanimous wisdom.

In the end its your ass that's on the line, if you want to waste this precious human life creating the causes for suffering, it is 100% up to you.
: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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Sat May 05, 2012 11:48 am

Thank you again for pointing out. Whatever that path is, I will be mindful as I have always been, every breath, every moment, every leave that I rake. And, if someone must take my life for what I did, I will bow down for it.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sat May 05, 2012 12:06 pm

You've been watching too many samurai movies my friend! :smile: Just relax and be natural. Tension arises through too much conceptualisation and grasping at the concepts, wisdom arises through relaxation.
"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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Sat May 05, 2012 1:07 pm

Sorry, I don't watch movie. I meditate, and be mindful of my breathing, my thoughts and my action- other may disagree, but this is what I do.

You call me friend, but your words are hardly friendly- yet you mentioned wisdom and relaxation.

Nonetheless, I thank you for allowing me to express my point of view, to be tested, looked down upon and yet still remaining calm and focus. To be aware of what I shall do and affirm my conviction. And to thank those all of you who serve and ultimately give the life to protect me and my family from internal and external threats. Also to those of you who made my life a bit more comfortable- I bow my head.
Last edited by Meditator on Sat May 05, 2012 2:06 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sat May 05, 2012 1:45 pm

Sounds good! Who is your teacher?
: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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Sat May 05, 2012 1:54 pm

Suffering is my teacher. That's why I am on this planet. There are so many teachers here.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sat May 05, 2012 2:02 pm

Suffering is not a teacher, it is just an experience that occurs to all sentient beings. A teacher is somebody that helps you overcome suffering. If suffering was a teacher then all sentient beings in Samsara would be liberated already.

At least now I am aware of the source of your misundertandings.
: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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Meditator » Sat May 05, 2012 2:08 pm

And I shall suffer more.
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Re: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Sat May 05, 2012 2:23 pm

If that is what you choose.
: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: Is My Job Wrong Livelihood?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Sat May 05, 2012 5:01 pm

tomamundsen wrote:Thanks Dechen (and everyone else). That about wraps up the thread.

You are welcome.

As the OP stated, the thread has exhausted itself long ago.
As such, I'll close it.
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