Do you watch tv?

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

Do you watch tv?

Postby Digity » Mon May 27, 2013 5:04 am

Tomorrow I plan to cancel my cable tv subscription. I'm just so bored of tv and barely ever watch it anymore. I might get Netflix, but we'll see. Do most people here watch tv? I think the more I've gotten into the practice the less interested I've become spending my time watching television. I think there's a correlation.
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Crazy cloud » Mon May 27, 2013 5:14 am

Been watching less on all plattforms, including tv. Finds information to be less and less relevant to my major "walking business".

guess i'm going for "all in" pretty soon

one long pure beautiful road of pain
and the beauty of death and no pain


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your name Mori means forest like the infinite fresh green distances of your blindness
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Vern Stevens » Mon May 27, 2013 5:38 am

I still watch TV, but I'm finding that I'm losing interest in certain types of shows/movies.

I'm still very much a fan of The Walking Dead though. This is more of a thinking/philosophical show than I think many people give it credit for. Once you get past the zombies being monsters, you can see that they simply represent another obstacle for humanity to overcome (plagues, wars, famine) and that the real struggle remains how dealing with our fellow man represents the greatest threat or the greatest asset. The characters continually face moral choices and the fact that life can be fleeting is ever present with the loss of several major characters throughout the series.
“What we think, we become.“ - The Buddha
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Aloka » Mon May 27, 2013 6:50 am

Digity wrote:Tomorrow I plan to cancel my cable tv subscription. I'm just so bored of tv and barely ever watch it anymore. I might get Netflix, but we'll see. Do most people here watch tv? I think the more I've gotten into the practice the less interested I've become spending my time watching television. I think there's a correlation.


Hi Digity,

I very rarely watch TV these days- maybe a couple of programs a week. I also don't watch movies or read fiction stories any more, because I lost interest in occupying my mind with illusory situations and fantasies created by other people.

with kind wishes,

Aloka :)
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby kilanta » Mon May 27, 2013 7:30 am

I watch documentaries and dhamma talks from Youtube quite frequently, but don't own an actual television apparatus and haven't had one since 90s. So yes, I watch tv in a way.
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby BlackBird » Mon May 27, 2013 8:52 am

Mostly BBC Knowledge/World, Nat Geographic & History. I record shows on Soho (NZ Sky's HBO/AMC chan) - It's not all boob tubes, but I can understand cancelling your cable.
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Sam Vara » Mon May 27, 2013 7:07 pm

I gave away my TV about five years ago, and have not regretted it once. Most of my time spent watching TV was utterly wasted. I have the fond idea that a small number of TV programmes are well made and have artistic merit, but when I see TV now (for example on holiday, or on-line to catch something people tell me I have "just got to watch!") I find it all mildly irritating. It just looks crude and predictable in form and content.
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Viscid » Mon May 27, 2013 7:14 pm

I mainly stick to youtube content, and that's mostly of lectures/music/docs, with a couple personalities thrown in. For TV, I'll download an entire series, but in the past few years that's been limited to Breaking Bad. Soon I'll watch Game of Thrones, mostly because it's become a fairly important shared mythos and I am doing a grave disservice to my friends by making them feeling guilty about discussing events in the show without my having watched it. Which they do quite often.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Mojo » Mon May 27, 2013 10:55 pm

I quit paying for cable because of the expense Oct 11 and am in an area where I can't get digital reception, so I've been just watching dvds from the library since. I don't ever plan on paying for cable or satelite again, though I'd get an antenna someday if my geography permits to watch PBS. I hate commercials. I didn't realize how badly till I was without them for a few days.
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby manas » Tue May 28, 2013 2:37 am

I allow myself to watch TV, if there's something that is both interesting and not too unwholesome on. But due to both of those criteria hardly ever being met, I too find myself watching less and less as time passes. But in my experience actually throwing out the TV set and thus making it impossible, isn't necessarily the best way to reduce TV watching. I got rid of my set once and ended up regretting it, and having to get another one (free and off the side of the road, thankfully). I find that if one lives alone and sometimes spends an entire day hardly ever seeing anyone else, that a bit of TV in the evening can sometimes alleviate that feeling of isolation. But it just can't compete with the Internet anymore. Most of what's on TV is really low-grade stuff, and being able to search for quality videos on places like youtube is a much better way to get one's entertainment fix, if that is what one needs. So I would say I'm down to just a few hours a week now, and not by any act of willpower, just because it's mostly so very dull and boring.

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Primum non nocere: "first, do no harm."
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Mindstar » Tue May 28, 2013 10:26 am

I watch TV only rarely and i avoid anything with violence in it as everything has an effect on the mind.
Most of the time i watch some funny show for a good laugh. The only show i`m watching regularly (on the internet) is Running Man.
Never fails to make me smile love the humour.
I also watch japanese shows for entertainment occasinally as i find the mix of kawaii and funny very enjoyable.
If i`m in the mood/mind state for something intellectual i watch Dhamma Tube.

manas wrote:II find that if one lives alone and sometimes spends an entire day hardly ever seeing anyone else, that a bit of TV in the evening can sometimes alleviate that feeling of isolation. But it just can't compete with the Internet anymore. Most of what's on TV is really low-grade stuff, and being able to search for quality videos on places like youtube is a much better way to get one's entertainment fix, if that is what one needs. So I would say I'm down to just a few hours a week now, and not by any act of willpower, just because it's mostly so very dull and boring.

:anjali:


I totally agree as i´m living on purpose alone too. I try to practice but in between i allow myself to enjoy a little bit of entertainment also as i´m only meeting friends at the weekends.
Wherever he goes, there he is unafraid.. Wherever he sleeps, there he is unalarmed!
The nights and days does neither touch nor burn him. He sees nothing in this world
that is to be kept or lost.. Therefore his mind dwells in goodwill and gentle kindness
towards all beings until he falls asleep.
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Ben » Tue May 28, 2013 10:58 am

What on earth are you people talking about?
TV is good for you.

Seriously, TV is just a medium and is only as good or as bad is what you choose to consume, uncritically.
kind regards,

Ben
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Kim OHara » Tue May 28, 2013 11:46 am

Ben wrote:What on earth are you people talking about?
TV is good for you.

Seriously, TV is just a medium and is only as good or as bad is what you choose to consume, uncritically.
kind regards,

Ben

"choose to consume, uncritically"? The problem is often that people don't actually choose at all, just switch the thing on - though I'm glad to see not many people here fall into the trap.
Like most who have answered already, I don't watch much (in my case, usually half an hour of news per day plus occasional nature or science doco's and even more occasional drama) and I'm gradually shifting to viewing online anyway. Cable/satellite? Never had it, never wanted it.

:popcorn:
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Ben » Tue May 28, 2013 12:24 pm

Hi Kim,
Kim O'Hara wrote:"choose to consume, uncritically"? The problem is often that people don't actually choose at all, just switch the thing on.


And switching the TV on is something they are choosing to do, right?
kind regards,

Ben
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

Sayagyi U Ba Khin


Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global Relief
UNHCR Syria Emergency Relief AppealTyphoon Haiyan Relief AppealKiva: (person to person micro-finance)

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Spiny Norman » Tue May 28, 2013 1:37 pm

I'd like to think there is a meditation practice called "Mindfulness with TV", but I haven't been able to find it in the suttas yet.... :tongue:
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Viscid » Tue May 28, 2013 4:47 pm

The problem is people habituate themselves into watching television over doing activities requiring some actual effort. Once they develop the habit of watching television excessively, doing productive and/or fulfilling activities becomes much more difficult.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Vern Stevens » Tue May 28, 2013 8:50 pm

People habituate all kinds of unskillful choices. I know I still make unskillful choices despite my best efforts to be more mindful. As Ben alluded to earlier, TV is but one tool which people can either use skillfully or unskillfully.
“What we think, we become.“ - The Buddha
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby BlackBird » Tue May 28, 2013 9:56 pm

Ben is quite correct. There is no such thing as unconscious action, action may be mindfully done or mindlessly done, but it cannot be unconscious.

Television is what you make it, by itself it is merely a medium.

metta
Jack
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Coyote » Tue May 28, 2013 10:13 pm

I don't watch a lot of TV if I am by myself - just a few shows like Game of Thrones that I am keeping up on. I have picked up the bad habit of watching TV while I eat, which is usually comedy or some kind of documentary. I don't think it is any worse a habit than the other media I engage in - fiction books and music. I do try to be mindful of getting caught up in these kind of things though, especially dramas.
"If beings knew, as I know, the results of giving & sharing, they would not eat without having given, nor would the stain of miserliness overcome their minds. Even if it were their last bite, their last mouthful, they would not eat without having shared."
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Re: Do you watch tv?

Postby Viscid » Tue May 28, 2013 10:27 pm

BlackBird wrote:...action may be mindfully done or mindlessly done, but it cannot be unconscious.


Plainly wrong. There are lots of actions which are unconscious: breathing, chewing, swallowing, walking, and even speaking can be unconscious (sleepwalkers.) How we act at any moment is conditioned by our history. Most of the time we're doing ritualized actions day after day without much conscious thought. If we had to make conscious decisions for every minor action we make, we'd be paralyzed by the buzz of constant deliberation.

People don't consciously decide about whether or not to watch TV before they do, they generally just do it because they always do it.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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