Ajahn Brahm for sale?

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tiltbillings
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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:04 pm

Mr Man wrote:
marc108 wrote: seems clear that no Vinaya rule has really been broken here
Is this the only criteria you use to determine what is appropriate?
Why do you care? Why is this question important enough for you to ask?

And, seriously, this question is the only response you had to Marc's msg and the video that goes along with it?
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:09 pm

Cittasanto wrote:Hi Marc
I am afraid the act stands by itself, motivation is not a mitigating factor. but you should read what I put instead of plucking one word out of context, or taking that as the whole of an argument against.

The Bhikkhunis have a roof over their head and greater comfort then they should expect in the life they have chosen, would extra space for lodgings now really be a multimillion dollar project? or is the project bigger than needed now? two new residences, new monastery, new carpark....
They already have land and a roof over their heads. new everything is not necessarily the best option.
You certainly do not have to like or approve of what he does, and your repeated stated objections are certainly noted. I think I'll trust the consideably more experienced and far more knowledgable bhikkhu on this.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by Cittasanto » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:28 pm

tiltbillings wrote:]You certainly do not have to like or approve of what he does, and your repeated stated objections are certainly noted. I think I'll trust the consideably more experienced and far more knowledgable bhikkhu on this.
where was I talking to you? and what is your point?
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He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
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He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by marc108 » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:37 pm

Hey Citta,

I'm sorry if you felt singled out. I intentionally didnt quote you to avoid that... I cherry picked what you said because I felt it best represented the overall sentiment. I did read what you said, and I understand your point of view.

I think you should watch that video. Ajahn Brahm states clearly that there aren't enough buildings for all the women who wish to become Bhikkhunis. I think when you say things like 'greater comfort than they should expect', again this is just reflecting your opinions and not necessarily what is best for Bhikkhu/ni's. Ajahn Brahms monastery is quite simple from my understanding, I seriously doubt he is trying to make a lavish multi-million dollar place. He's managed to create probably the largest and most thriving dual monastic-lay Sangha in the western world as well as train countless monks... I dont think we should all be so presumptuous as to assume we know more about what is conducive to the holy life than Ajahn Brahm.

I think Ajahn Brahms intent is to FULLY reestablish the Bhikkhuni order and this MUST include a thriving monastery with close western lay connection and a somewhat modern facility. A bunch of huts in the woods doesn't really cut it and isn't going to keep them fed and supported for the next thousand years...
Last edited by marc108 on Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by Mr Man » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:44 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Mr Man wrote:
marc108 wrote: seems clear that no Vinaya rule has really been broken here
Is this the only criteria you use to determine what is appropriate?
Why do you care? Why is this question important enough for you to ask?

And, seriously, this question is the only response you had to Marc's msg and the video that goes along with it?
Hi tiltbillings
I thought it was important enough to ask because I thought that the discussion was missing the point that the monastic code isn’t the only criteria to determine what is appropriate or inappropriate.

I had seen the video in the original link in the OP. I had also said in an earlier post
Mr Man wrote: If I were to put a positive spin on it I would say that it meant more as a wake up call and to make it clear that more support is needed and this is how far the Ven. Ajahn will go ”
, which touches on the other points raised by marc108.

Why do you have a problem with people thinking it is inappropriate? Should I not find it inappropriate?

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Mar 12, 2013 11:13 pm

Mr Man wrote: I thought it was important enough to ask because I thought that the discussion was missing the point that the monastic code isn’t the only criteria to determine what is appropriate or inappropriate.
Then it becomes a matter of "taste."
Why do you have a problem with people thinking it is inappropriate? Should I not find it inappropriate?
My complaint is with those who are pretty much maligning Ven B because they think that a fairly innocuous attempt at fund raising is a thing of figner wagging opprobrium. Ven Brahm deserves better than that.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by Cittasanto » Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:17 am

marc108 wrote:Hey Citta,

I'm sorry if you felt singled out. I intentionally didnt quote you to avoid that... I cherry picked what you said because I felt it best represented the overall sentiment. I did read what you said, and I understand your point of view.
singled out? no, but I did think you were replying to my post there.
anyway.
I think you should watch that video. Ajahn Brahm states clearly that there aren't enough buildings for all the women who wish to become Bhikkhunis. I think when you say things like 'greater comfort than they should expect', again this is just reflecting your opinions and not necessarily what is best for Bhikkhu/ni's. Ajahn Brahms monastery is quite simple from my understanding, I seriously doubt he is trying to make a lavish multi-million dollar place. He's managed to create probably the largest and most thriving dual monastic-lay Sangha in the western world as well as train countless monks... I dont think we should all be so presumptuous as to assume we know more about what is conducive to the holy life than Ajahn Brahm.
when I say greater comfort than they should expect I am refering to the minimum standard they are instructed to expect and their current situation. the cost of multi-million dollar that is from their own site and not all of it is for residence and the vast majority of development isn't residence, so sorry but I think you should look at the site http://www.dhammasara.org.au/sala-appeal.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
I wonder if the Buddha, Ajahn Mun, Ajahn Chah, Ajahn Maha-boowa or Pa Auk Sayadaw would agree that this plan is neccessary and a few huts don't cut it? how did they arrange their dwelling places in the forest?
I think Ajahn Brahms intent is to FULLY reestablish the Bhikkhuni order and this MUST include a thriving monastery with close western lay connection and a somewhat modern facility. A bunch of huts in the woods doesn't really cut it and isn't going to keep them fed and supported for the next thousand years...
The Bhikkhuni order has been re-established and had been before Ajahn Brahm. but nice requisites does not make it established or last longer.
But the motivation (reason why) is not a mitigating factor for the intent to sell himself and the rules and teachings relevant (some of which I have quoted previously) are still relevant to him as a monk.
whether or not the facitities are needed, funds should be obtained properly without turning away from the life they chose to live. you can say this is my opinion, but this opinion is based on the texts (including in part the vinaya) as I understand them. and have shared some of the relevant passages so you and others can decide for yourself and correct it based on what I am basing it on, so any failure to demonstrate is not mine. But where is your liking of this based? i see only a liking for laughter (hence the derogitory name calling of dour) or of wanting to support the nuns. but that doesn't make Ajahn Brahms selling of himself appropriate.
If the support here is representative of the wider community of lay followers I wonder why they need such intervention.
Blog, Suttas, Aj Chah, Facebook.

He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by Hickersonia » Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:47 am

I don't really care to put much into the argument (there is enough fuel here already) but, taken for whatever it is, I find it rather amusing even if it does possibly break some Vinaya rule or cause some other manner of ethical hiccup.

Honestly, I won't try to say for sure whether the Buddha would admonish Ajahn Brahm for this "stunt" or not, or even if I care honestly because the Buddha admonished other well-known disciples who were (or later became) arahants. The only thing I will say conclusively is that I LOL'd at work.

Thank you for teaching me once again that I really need to be careful about what I am looking at online while I'm on the clock.

:rofl:
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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by marc108 » Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:05 am

Cittasanto wrote: when I say greater comfort than they should expect I am refering to the minimum standard they are instructed to expect and their current situation. the cost of multi-million dollar that is from their own site and not all of it is for residence and the vast majority of development isn't residence, so sorry but I think you should look at the site http://www.dhammasara.org.au/sala-appeal.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
I checked it out... interesting, but I still dont find issue with that. I dont find that extravagant at all & I think this likely will be the center of the rebirth of the Bhikkhuni order for hundreds of years. I think the desire to integrate things like parking lots, a big sala, guest quarters is wise and actually quite vital to the survival of western monasteries. I trust Ajahn Brahms wisdom in this matter.
I wonder if the Buddha, Ajahn Mun, Ajahn Chah, Ajahn Maha-boowa or Pa Auk Sayadaw would agree that this plan is neccessary and a few huts don't cut it? how did they arrange their dwelling places in the forest?
this was in pre-industriliazed Thailand & ancient India where taking care of mendicants is built into the culture, it's not an accurate representation of what its like today to establish a western monastery nor a accurate comparison of how the pre-industrialized Sangha lived vs the laity or the societal norm. To say modern monastics should live the same as monastics in the 1800's doesnt make sense. I dont suppose, nor should any of us, to know what the Buddha or any of the great masters would think about the situation.

I respect your opinion and your [much more advanced than mine] understanding of the Vinaya but I still dont find problem with what Ajahn Brahm is doing. I view it as quite noble & selfless, and I believe history will side with this view and not view him as prostituting himself. Either way these are all just our opinions :)

also I did not call anyone names, you must be confusing me for someone else.
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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by pilgrim » Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:37 am

So generally, most people on this thread are agreeable that he has not transgressed any rule. So it is just a view by some that what he does is inappropriate. Even if this is your view it can't be denied that it has the intention and results to bring about lots of good.

I agree that monastery facilities should not be lavish, but they should be comfortable and appropriate to the times and culture. The Buddha and his sangha had no qualms spending most of his vassas at the Jetavana monastery, which went beyond comfortable in his time. Certainly it was not a bunch of huts in the wood. There is no reason to have an aversion to 'multi-million dollar facilities" if these facilities are designed for utility, not for luxury.

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by Sylvester » Wed Mar 13, 2013 2:04 am

marc108 wrote:
Cittasanto wrote: when I say greater comfort than they should expect I am refering to the minimum standard they are instructed to expect and their current situation. the cost of multi-million dollar that is from their own site and not all of it is for residence and the vast majority of development isn't residence, so sorry but I think you should look at the site http://www.dhammasara.org.au/sala-appeal.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
I checked it out... interesting, but I still dont find issue with that. I dont find that extravagant at all & I think this likely will be the center of the rebirth of the Bhikkhuni order for hundreds of years. I think the desire to integrate things like parking lots, a big sala, guest quarters is wise and actually quite vital to the survival of western monasteries. I trust Ajahn Brahms wisdom in this matter.
I wonder if the Buddha, Ajahn Mun, Ajahn Chah, Ajahn Maha-boowa or Pa Auk Sayadaw would agree that this plan is neccessary and a few huts don't cut it? how did they arrange their dwelling places in the forest?
this was in pre-industriliazed Thailand & ancient India where taking care of mendicants is built into the culture, it's not an accurate representation of what its like today to establish a western monastery nor a accurate comparison of how the pre-industrialized Sangha lived vs the laity or the societal norm. To say modern monastics should live the same as monastics in the 1800's doesnt make sense. I dont suppose, nor should any of us, to know what the Buddha or any of the great masters would think about the situation.
Sadhu to that! And here's an even more ancient precedent about mega-projects, one that resulted in the Migāramātupāsāda (the palace of Migāra's mother) -
Tasmā visākhā sayameva tassa mūlaṃ datvā satasahassādhikā nava koṭiyo sakaṭe āropetvā vihāraṃ netvā satthāraṃ vanditvā, ‘‘bhante, mayhaṃ ayyena ānandattherena mama pasādhanaṃ hatthena āmaṭṭhaṃ, tena āmaṭṭhakālato paṭṭhāya na sakkā taṃ mayā pilandhituṃ. Taṃ pana vissajjetvā kappiyaṃ upanessāmīti vikkiṇāpentī aññaṃ taṃ gaṇhituṃ samatthaṃ adisvā ahameva tassa mūlaṃ gāhāpetvā āgatā, catūsu paccayesu katarapaccayena upanessāmi, bhante’’ti. Pācīnadvāre saṅghassa vasanaṭṭhānaṃ kātuṃ te yuttaṃ visākheti ‘‘yuttaṃ, bhante’’ti visākhā tuṭṭhamānasā navakoṭīhi bhūmimeva gaṇhi. Aparāhi navakoṭīhi vihāraṃ kātuṃ ārabhi.

Therefore Visakha herself alone gave the price for it, and causing
the nine crores of treasure and a hundred thousand additional to be
placed in a cart, she caused it to be conveyed to the monastery. Then
she saluted the Teacher and said, "Reverend Sir, this thought has
been in my mind: 'My noble master. Elder Ananda, touched with his
hand my golden-creeper-parure, and from the moment he touched
it I decided that I could no longer wear it. Therefore I decided to sell
it and to give you the purchase-money.' But when I tried to sell it,
I could find no one who was able to buy it, and therefore made up the
price for it myself and have brought it to you. Which of the four
requisites shall I present to you. Reverend Sir?"
The Teacher replied, [413] "Visakha, would it suit you to erect
a dwelling-place for the monks at the eastern gate of the monastery?"
"That would suit me exactly, Reverend Sir," replied Visakha, her
heart filled with delight. So for nine crores she bought the site, and
with nine crores more began to build a dwelling-place for the monks.

Commentary to Dhp v.53, transl Burlingame
Don't even get me started on the size of the resulting monastery, or the fact the several venerables went around with psychic powers collecting trees and stones for the works.

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by Mr Man » Wed Mar 13, 2013 7:00 am

tiltbillings wrote:
Mr Man wrote: I thought it was important enough to ask because I thought that the discussion was missing the point that the monastic code isn’t the only criteria to determine what is appropriate or inappropriate.
Then it becomes a matter of "taste."
I had noticed that you had said it was in bad taste. Do monastics have a responsibility to the expectations of the lay community?

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by tiltbillings » Wed Mar 13, 2013 7:26 am

Mr Man wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
Mr Man wrote: I thought it was important enough to ask because I thought that the discussion was missing the point that the monastic code isn’t the only criteria to determine what is appropriate or inappropriate.
Then it becomes a matter of "taste."
I had noticed that you had said it was in bad taste. Do monastics have a responsibility to the expectations of the lay community?
Why do you care what I think? It is not necessarily a monastic function to be an arbiter of taste. Also, I said it was tacky; I do not believe I said bad taste, thoughI have no interest in going back over all of this.

Ven Brahm's students, I am sure, are less likely to be put off my his actions than what I have seen here, given that they know him and know what to expect from him and likely have a far better handle on his character. As I said, he is an highly experienced and knowledgeable monk, I would trust his judgment over what I seen in this thread in the highly judgemental opposition to his fund raising.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by tiltbillings » Wed Mar 13, 2013 8:27 am

This thread is tail chaser, covering the same ground, voicing the same opinions.

If Ven Brahm ever decides to discuss his reasons for his choice of fund raising methodology we certainly can revisit all of this.


The following was posted to me to share here, and I am happy to do so:
Students of Ajahn Brahm and the Dhammaloka community can be asked directly about this, too. In case one feels the need for further clarifications, asking there would certainly yield the benefit of understanding how the people at Dhammaloka and Ajahn Brahm himself see it. The Forum can be found here:
http://community.dhammaloka.org.au/forum.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Hearing the other side of the story can be helpful for one's understanding.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Ajahn Brahm for sale?

Post by DNS » Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:42 pm

tiltbillings wrote: http://community.dhammaloka.org.au/forum.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
There is a discussion of this at the Dhammaloka forum in the Papancha Lounge, but it is only viewable to members. I am a member and see that it is currently 34 posts long; so far no response from Ajahn Brahm or any other monastic in that thread.

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