Disrespect

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Disrespect

Postby Hunter » Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:25 pm

I see that in Theravada counries that many people talk about disrespect of the images of Buddha and that some people, like the music artist Akon, are banned from such countries for disrespect. I have also heard of other things too regarding disrespect in theravada countires. So what im wondering is, what constitutes disrespect towards an image of Buddha and what would the consequences be?
the Buddha said :

"Intention, monks, is karma, I say. Having willed, one acts through body, speech and mind."
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Re: Disrespect

Postby jcsuperstar » Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:44 pm

pointing your feet at the buddha, being naked in front of the buddha things like that. mostly people will just think youre an a@#hole, uncultured, rude etc
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Disrespect

Postby Hunter » Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:49 pm

But are there any Karmic Consequences? Did Buddha ever talk about this subject or is it not really of importance. The way I look at it is that the image of a Buddha represents his qualities and his teachings and should therefore be respected. I know that there are many people out there who have images of Buddha adorning their house and use the statues for decoration. Im sure the same people have also pointed their feet at the statue, and been naked around the statue sense they see it as decoration. What would happen to them? Would they have severe consequences or do they have to intend to be disrespectful?
the Buddha said :

"Intention, monks, is karma, I say. Having willed, one acts through body, speech and mind."
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Re: Disrespect

Postby jcsuperstar » Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:57 pm

weeeelllll there were no Buddha images at the time of the Buddha so he never taught about them. i think we have a thread going on right now about this also maybe you can look into that one see what others think. basically though your mental state determines everything so it is with mind that you make wholesome or unwholesome kamma.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Disrespect

Postby Monkey Mind » Tue Jun 22, 2010 6:10 pm

Okay, I couldn't immediately find the other thread you mentioned, so I will ask my question here. I was gifted a coffee mug with an image of Buddha (face of a statue), and a quote from the Dhammapada. It is a very pretty mug. I received some feedback from Tibetan practitioners that the mug might be offensive to some traditions. What about the Theravada crowd? Will people think I am "an a@#hole, uncultured, rude etc"? Or is it not a big deal from the Theravadan POV?
"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
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Re: Disrespect

Postby jcsuperstar » Tue Jun 22, 2010 6:37 pm

theravada isnt one big crowd, it would depend on if youre spending time with certain ethic buddhists, many american buddhists wouldnt care though. i wouldnt
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Disrespect

Postby Modus.Ponens » Tue Jun 22, 2010 8:08 pm

I don't see how a mug with the image of the Buddha would be disrespectful.

The Buddha talked about this. in the Vinaya it is said that he didn't want anyone to build images of him.
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Disrespect

Postby Hunter » Tue Jun 22, 2010 8:49 pm

Modus could you post the vinaya where Buddha talks about having no images of him. I have heard of this but I could never find it. Thanks!
the Buddha said :

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Re: Disrespect

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Jun 22, 2010 8:50 pm

Hunter wrote:I see that in Theravada counries that many people talk about disrespect of the images of Buddha and that some people, like the music artist Akon, are banned from such countries for disrespect. I have also heard of other things too regarding disrespect in theravada countires. So what im wondering is, what constitutes disrespect towards an image of Buddha and what would the consequences be?

When I was in Thailand in the mid 70's a couple Mormon missionary guys thought it would be cool have their photo taken sitting on one of Thailand's giant Buddha statues. They got six months in a fine local lock-up, which is a good wake up call to the _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Mormon church to train these dumb kids they send out their to be a bit more culturaly sensitive.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

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Re: Disrespect

Postby Modus.Ponens » Tue Jun 22, 2010 9:19 pm

Hunter wrote:Modus could you post the vinaya where Buddha talks about having no images of him. I have heard of this but I could never find it. Thanks!


I don't know where it is in the vinaya. Maybe other members can find it. The best I found was this:

J. C. Huntington, who claims that the Buddha image had come into being in Buddha's own lifetime, quotes a passage from the Vinaya of the Sarvastivadins in his Studies in Buddhist Art of South Asia under "The Origin of the Buddha Image". The passage is an indirect injunction against his image making, but the words used in it comprise as much a sanction for it. In the passage, Anathapindika asks the Great Lord," World honored one, if images of yours are not allowed to be made, pray, may we not at least make images of Bodhisattvas in attendance upon you?" The Buddha gives his assent to it

I wonder if this passage is found in the Theravada Vinaya. I always thought it was from the Theravada Vinaya.
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Disrespect

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Jun 22, 2010 10:09 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote:
I wonder if this passage is found in the Theravada Vinaya. I always thought it was from the Theravada Vinaya.
Not that I have ever seen.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Disrespect

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Jun 22, 2010 10:50 pm

Monkey Mind wrote:Okay, I couldn't immediately find the other thread you mentioned,

viewtopic.php?f=27&t=4655
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Re: Disrespect

Postby kc2dpt » Tue Jun 22, 2010 11:00 pm

Hunter wrote:So what im wondering is, what constitutes disrespect towards an image of Buddha and what would the consequences be?

A disrespectful attitude will have consequences, such as ending up close-minded to teachings you might hear.

If a teacher thinks you are disrespectful, either through things you say or things you do, he might be less inclined to help you; he may feel his time is better spent elsewhere. Or he may not care. It depends on the teacher.

Then there are cultural norms. This has nothing to do with Buddhism and everything to do with people growing up in different places. If you do something which another culture considers a sign of disrespect, such as pointing your feet at a Buddha image, they might become angry, or they might ignore you, or they might pay it no mind since you are from a different culture. It would depend in the individual.
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
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Re: Disrespect

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Jun 23, 2010 12:28 am

Hi Peter,
Peter wrote:If a teacher thinks you are disrespectful, either through things you say or things you do, he might be less inclined to help you; he may feel his time is better spent elsewhere. Or he may not care. It depends on the teacher.

This is a very good point that works on various levels.

We recently imported a new teacher from Thailand. In our conversations he has said he can tell I'm serious because I do my best to obey the conventions, to be respectful, and so on. On a recent retreat I asked him how he could tell whether I was doing something correctly (I don't recall what it was exactly) and he said he could just tell by looking at how I moved and behaved. There was no need to ask me questions about it.

Furthermore, many of these conventions are useful aids to mindfulness. One bows when one enters the hall. One tries to remember not to talk loudly or harshly, to pay respect to the monks and the older people. All really useful for refining one's attitude and mindfulness.

And, of course, JC puts it well:
jcsuperstar wrote:pointing your feet at the buddha, being naked in front of the buddha things like that. mostly people will just think youre an a@#hole, uncultured, rude etc

And you won't get much in the way of good interactions if you are see as an a@#hole...

Mike
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Re: Disrespect

Postby withoutcolour » Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:00 am

Gee I hope being naked in front of a Buddha statue isn't bad because my five Buddha statues watch me get dressed every day!!! :popcorn:

Anyway. The Buddha image isn't really the Buddha, don't be too attached to the image.
Obviously be respectful.
As mentioned before, in certain countries you shouldn't point your feet at the Buddha or take photos with it.
And again, Buddha never wanted statues erected of him, or to be worshiped really. The point of a Buddha statue, at least the way I was taught, is to remind us to be mindful, compassionate, and of the Buddha's teachings. Also, I was taught that bowing at statues of the Buddha is representation of bowing at one's own potential to be a Buddha, one's own compassion and wisdom, and one's potential attainments.

Bottom line is, in public just follow the local customs as to what's respectful.

-wc
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Re: Disrespect

Postby Hunter » Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:05 am

withoutcolour wrote:Gee I hope being naked in front of a Buddha statue isn't bad because my five Buddha statues watch me get dressed every day!!! :popcorn:

Anyway. The Buddha image isn't really the Buddha, don't be too attached to the image.
Obviously be respectful.
As mentioned before, in certain countries you shouldn't point your feet at the Buddha or take photos with it.
And again, Buddha never wanted statues erected of him, or to be worshiped really. The point of a Buddha statue, at least the way I was taught, is to remind us to be mindful, compassionate, and of the Buddha's teachings. Also, I was taught that bowing at statues of the Buddha is representation of bowing at one's own potential to be a Buddha, one's own compassion and wisdom, and one's potential attainments.

Bottom line is, in public just follow the local customs as to what's respectful.

-wc



Thats exactly how I see it too. Because I have too gotten dressed before my statue of Buddha.
the Buddha said :

"Intention, monks, is karma, I say. Having willed, one acts through body, speech and mind."
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Re: Disrespect

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Wed Jun 23, 2010 4:24 am

See the Lesser Discourse on the Analysis of Kamma

15. "Here, student, some woman or man is obdurate and haughty; he does not pay homage to whom he should pay homage, or rise up for whom he should rise up, or give a seat to whom he should give a seat, or make way for whom he should make way, or worship him who should be worshipped, or respect him who should be respected, or revere him who should be revered, or honor him who should be honored. Due to having performed and completed such kammas, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a state of deprivation... If instead he comes to the human state, he is low-born wherever he is reborn. This is the way that leads to low birth, that is to say, to be obdurate and haughty, not to pay homage to whom he should pay homage, nor rise up for..., nor give a seat to..., nor make way for..., nor worship..., nor respect..., nor revere..., nor honor him who should be honored.
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Re: Disrespect

Postby rowyourboat » Thu Jun 24, 2010 3:55 pm

Once a sri lankan meditating bikkhu said 'ganda keliye budunta mal puja kalath, vesi keliye mala paha kalath ekai'. Roughly translated to 'whether you offer flowers to the buddha or offer faeces to a toilet it is the same'. He was trying to shock his sri lankan disciples from their attachment to the buddha and trying to get them to see that everything is sankhara which were anicca dukkha and anatta. Some people found this quite difficult to swallow, others with vipassana insight could understand where he was coming from.
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Re: Disrespect

Postby PeterB » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:18 pm

I think that kind of response ( that of the Bhikkhu ) has to be contextualised rowyourboat.
In a context of those who may have been raised with an exaggerated and perhaps superstitious fear of certain kinds of imagery it might be a good corrective.
But the westerners have been raised with a widely internalised distrust of authority and with an iconoclastic view of the sacred.
This can lead westerners to many years of resistance to instruction, and of attempting a D.I.Y approach to Dhamma in a fruitless attempt to reinforce an independence that they in reality do not have . That in fact does not exist.

We should show respect to Buddha Rupas , not because we will go to hell if we don't, but because if we don't, at a deep level we are disrespecting ourselves and our best aspirations.
Incidentally, I don't think that getting dressed in front of a Buddha Rupa shows disrespect.
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Re: Disrespect

Postby mythree » Fri Jun 25, 2010 12:49 pm

i think it's people's attitude towards buddha.am from Sri Lanka couple of months ago SL government banned Akon concert here in colombo because of his video women dancing in swimming dress in front of buddha statue( Sexy Chik video). because the way we asians think of some matters are far different from the western thought.i have seen in some western countries they put buddha statues in coffee shops, bars, toilets so for as asians we think thats disrespect because he is a NOble Human who has been worshipped by more than 2550 years by billions of people. so buddha statue is not for bring luck or to attract people or a brand name. the buddha statue was build by Kushan Kings the only purpose is to worship and as a guide to attain liberation. so we dnt like it to be use as commercial item
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