Buddhism for Tough Guys

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alan
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Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by alan » Mon Jul 25, 2011 3:45 am

OK, I see your point. But remember monks eat what is given.
Despite the best attempts of vegetarians to convince people otherwise, Buddha did not categorically forbid the eating of meat.
Last edited by alan on Mon Jul 25, 2011 3:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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manas
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Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by manas » Mon Jul 25, 2011 3:52 am

alan wrote:Don't get that.
Hi alan,
were you referring to what I just wrote, or to the OP?
andrew.
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

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manas
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Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by manas » Mon Jul 25, 2011 4:06 am

alan wrote:OK, I see your point. But remember monks eat what is given.
Despite the best attempts of vegetarians to convince people otherwise, Buddha did not categorically forbid the eating of meat.
I see your point too. In fact, I follow the same principle in my own dealings with hosts. If I am a guest somewhere, and they have prepared a meal for me, I just accept it as it is. In that situation, i consider that the best I can do is to not cause inconvenience for my hosts. Privately, however, I never purchase meat, out of concern for animals. So I'm trying to walk a 'middle path' here. I did not do this when I was into Hinduism, by the way; it was the Buddha's attitude that made me more pragmatic, more flexible. But if someone asks me, I do point out that what happens in slaughterhouses would shock any caring person, IMO. But I don't go about everywhere preaching this; I wait for the appropriate moment to discuss such things.
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

alan
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Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by alan » Mon Jul 25, 2011 5:07 am

Well said, friend.

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buddhismfordudes
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Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by buddhismfordudes » Tue Aug 23, 2011 5:24 pm

My "freeing the mosquito in your bedroom" reference comes from a Vipassana meditation book written by an American (or British?) woman who literally described her act of catching and freeing a mosquito that had invaded her bedroom. My take would be to kill it, but on the other hand I hold spiders in a sort of reverence (because they eat mosquitoes!) and have never harmed one or killed one in my life. When my daughter was little and she had a spider in her bedroom, I would catch it in my hand and pretend to eat it, and then let it go on my back porch. Anyone who kills spiders do so because they are scary, hence someone who kills spiders is not a tough guy, and suffers under the delusion that spiders are scary. Of course, some spiders are scary.

My take on things is common sense, which I believe is enhanced in someone developing a Buddhist mindset, because delusion is "cast out" through diligent Dhamma study and meditation. If you can come to see the spider in a new light, you can see people in a new light. I did case management for a long time because I like to see people succeed, and over the years I've helped "enhance the community presence" of disabled people, ex-cons, the homeless, and Asian refugees - even jungle villagers in Sri Lanka. But I did get paid for most of this activity (not much, not enough to support a family on). On the other hand, I got paid for what made me happy.

Come visit me at Buddhism for Tough Guys at http://www.buddhismfordudes.blog.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I promise I'll check in more.

Gerry Stribling
Author of "Buddhism for Dudes" and
"Confessions of a Buddhist Gunslinger"
(amazon.com/Kindle Store)
Gerry Stribling
Author of "Buddhism for Dudes"
Blog "Buddhism for Tough Guys" at buddhismfordudes.blog.com

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Pondera
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Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by Pondera » Tue Aug 23, 2011 8:11 pm

buddhismfordudes wrote: Anyone who kills spiders do so because they are scary, hence someone who kills spiders is not a tough guy, and suffers under the delusion that spiders are scary. Of course, some spiders are scary.
Anyone who kills spiders also invites a rainfall.

The Buddha was not a weak man.
I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Rajagaha at the Maddakucchi Deer Reserve. Now at that time his foot had been pierced by a stone sliver. Excruciating were the bodily feelings that developed within him — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — but he endured them mindful, alert, & unperturbed. Having had his outer robe folded in four and laid out, he lay down on his right side in the lion's posture, with one foot placed on top of the other, mindful & alert.

Then 700 devatas from the Satullapa retinue, in the far extreme of the night, their extreme radiance lighting up the entirety of Maddakucchi, went to the Blessed One. On arrival, having bowed down to him, they stood to one side.

As she was standing there, one of the devatas exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "What a naga is Gotama the contemplative! And like a naga, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"

Then another devata exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "What a lion is Gotama the contemplative! And like a lion, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"

Then another devata exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "What a thoroughbred is Gotama the contemplative! And like a thoroughbred, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"

Then another devata exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "What a peerless bull is Gotama the contemplative! And like a peerless bull, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"

Then another devata exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "What a strong burden-carrier is Gotama the contemplative! And like a strong burden-carrier, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"

Then another devata exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "What a tamed one is Gotama the contemplative! And like a tamed one, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"

Then another devata exclaimed in the Blessed One's presence: "See a concentration well-developed, a mind well-released — neither pressed down nor forced back, nor with mental fabrication kept blocked or suppressed. Whoever would think that such a naga of a man, lion of a man, thoroughbred of a man, peerless bull of a man, strong burden-carrier of a man, such a tamed man should be violated: what else is that if not blindness?"

SN 1.38
Nor were his fellows-in-company. And if you read closely you will see to what infinite levels a man might cower beneath the feet of such men.
“...Now King Okkaka had a slave-girl called Disa, who gave birth to a black child. The black thing, when it was born, exclaimed : “Wash me, mother! Bath me, mother! Deliver me from this dirt, and I will bring you profit!” Because, Ambattha, just as people today use the term hobglobin (pisaca) as a term of abuse, so in those days they said black (kanha). And they said : “As soon as he was born, he spoke. He is born a Kanha, a hobglobin!” That is how in former days … the Sakyans were the masters, and you are descended from a salve-girl of the Sakyans.”

On hearing this, the young men said : “Reverend Gotama, do not humuliate Ambattha too much with talk of his being descended from a salve-girl : Ambattha is well-born of a good family, he is very learned, he is well-spoken, a scholar, well able to hold his own in this discussion with the Reverend Gotama!”

Then the Lord said to the young men : “If you consider that Ambattha is ill-born, not of a good family, unlearned, ill-spoken, no scholar, unable to hold his own in this discussion with the ascetic Gotama, then let Ambattha be silent, and you conduct this discussion with me. But if you think he is … able to hold his own, then you be quiet, and let him discuss with me.”

“Ambattha is well-born, Reverend Gotama ... We will be silent, he shall continue.”

Then the Lord said to Ambattha : “Ambattha, I have a fundamental question for you, which you will not like to answer. If you don’t answer, or evade the issue, if you keep silent or go away, your head will split into seven pieces. What do you think, Ambattha? Have you heard from old and venerable Brahmins, teachers of teachers, where the Kanhayans came from, or who was their ancestor?” At this Ambattha remained silent. The Lord asked him a second time. Again Ambattha remained silent, and the Lord said : “Answer me now, Ambattha, this is not a time for silence. Whoever, Ambattha, does not answer a fundamental question put to him by a Tathagata by the third asking has his head split into seven pieces. 8

And at that moment Vajirapani the yakkha,9 holding a huge iron club, flaming, ablaze and glowing, up in the sky just above Ambattha, was thinking : “If this young man Ambattha does not answer a proper question put to him by the Blessed Lord by the third time of asking, I’ll split his head into seven pieces!” The Lord saw Vajirapani, and so did Ambattha. And at the sight, Ambattha was terrified and unnerved, his hairs stood on end, and he sought protection, shelter and safety from the Lord. Crouching down close to the Lord, he said : “What did the Reverend Gotama say? May the Reverend Gotama repeat what he said!” “What do you think, Ambattha? Have you heard who was the ancestor of the Kanhayans?” “Yes, I have heard it just as the Reverend Gotama said, that is where the Kahayans came from, he was their ancestor.”

Hearing this, the young men made a loud noise and clamour : “So Ambattha is ill-born, not of a good family, born of a slave-girl of the Sakyans, and the Sakyans are Ambattha’s masters! We disparaged the ascetic Gotama, thinking he was not speaking the truth!”

DN 3
Plenty of manliness there. Plenty cases of "tough men", "bulls of men", "nagas of men" -who happen to appear meek and non-confrontational in their unassuming robes and begging bowls. It's quite the opposite. It's not the "tough guys" of the world; lifters, carriers, butchers, cowboys, giants, and what have you -who yield the most power. It's the formless nagas of the world who appear and disappear from one part of the universe to another with ease.
Then the Blessed One, realizing with his awareness the line of thinking in Ven. Anuruddha's awareness — just as a strong man might extend his flexed arm or flex his extended arm — disappeared from among the Bhaggas in the Deer Park at Bhesakala Grove, near Crocodile Haunt, and re-appeared among the Cetis in the Eastern Bamboo Park, right in front of Ven. Anuruddha.

AN 8.30
[/quote]

[Disclaimer: The world is full of jerks who would like nothing more than to denigrate you with sly remarks or direct provocation -so it helps to be strong and confident, or "tough" (so to speak), -despite the fact that you may be of such a character that nowhere inside of you does there appear to be a tendency of ill-will towards other people (or flies, or spiders)]

Otherwise you will feel entirely intimidated and afraid for your feelings (while simply walking about town, for instance). It doesn't pay to be tough in the sense that anyone should go so far as to make themselves "hardened"; It pays to be "tough" in a certain way that gives you inner confidence, because, without that, it's nearly impossible to walk around certain neighborhoods peacefully and without a care. Around every third corner there is always another group of disinterested, bogus, duppas wishing to test a person's backbone when they perceive even an ounce of mental or physical weakness.

In normal neighborhoods, people need some some meat on their bones and to live peacefully in the "world" without giving the duppas of the day the satisfaction of having nourished their inner meanness.

On the other hand you can't practice "good religion" on a diet of meat and beer alone. And the point I'm making there is found here: in DN 24
Four simple meditations on earth, water, fire, and wind - leading to tranquility and pleasure, equanimity and peacehttps://drive.google.com/file/d/1G3qI6G ... sp=sharing

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buddhismfordudes
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Re: Buddhism for Tough Guys

Post by buddhismfordudes » Fri Aug 26, 2011 9:06 pm

I believe that toughness and self-reliance go hand in hand. Fear is the enemy. The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.

I was a tough guy (USMC 1970-72) before I became a Buddhist. My most meditative experience ever was a summer spent on the Appalachian Trail. In retrospect, I have a compassionate streak in me a mile wide - always been that way. For the last twenty years I've practiced "street-level" social work with the disabled, criminals, homeless, veterans and refugees from Asia. It was great to help others and actually get paid for it, because when I don't get paid for it, I do it for free anyway. A good advocate, I believe, should exude a little toughness - I've been able to make good things happen for people because I'm not the kind of guy (in an advocacy role) that takes "no" for an answer.

Buddhism, I believe, is all about helping others in whatever capacity one can. For me, it's all about "the other guy" and I believe that's the meaning of "anatta" in real life. In that sense, my Marine training (self-sacrifice, keep your buddy alive, your role is secondary to the team's mission) and my Buddhist training fit together quite nicely.

My goal with my blog "Buddhism for Tough Guys" and my little book "Buddhism for Dudes" (amazon.com) is to share the Dhamma with the kind of guys who follow NASCAR and the NFL, gun owners and sports fishermen and military. And under situations I've encountered, sometimes it takes a little intimidation to prevent violence from happening. I'm not too into preaching to the choir or quibbling over esoteric matters. I've had a great life so far, full of adventure and sometimes dangerous, but I wouldn't have been able to do that if I was afraid.
Gerry Stribling
Author of "Buddhism for Dudes"
Blog "Buddhism for Tough Guys" at buddhismfordudes.blog.com

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