Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Samma
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by Samma » Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:12 pm

So the answer to "Is then murder justified in Buddhism, if it saves lives?"

Would be it depends on the circumstance. What kind of murder. How many lives. And so on. Of course this is all in the speculative realm and perhaps best put aside...

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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:18 pm

Samma wrote:So the answer to "Is then murder justified in Buddhism, if it saves lives?"

Would be it depends on the circumstance. What kind of murder. How many lives. And so on. Of course this is all in the speculative realm and perhaps best put aside...

Hitler and Stalin ...


Or to put it another way

Would you be violent, and possibly kill, a gang that was gang raping a woman if you had access to a gun. Or would you be mindful and remain in equanimity and let it continue to its conclusion?


I realise these aren't nice things to think about, but they seem to be important


I will be honest, I think I would shoot and possibly kill if faced with such a situation, even if I don't know the woman. Yet is this ethical in Buddhism? Would Buddha approve or disapprove?
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Dan74
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by Dan74 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:33 pm

There are many less extreme examples where monks were reported to have avoided touching a woman even those she was in need of help. The 'avoidance of the unwholesome' seems to always trump compassion and coming to aid. I wonder if there is some Hindu purity culture that has influenced this?
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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:38 pm

Dan74 wrote:There are many less extreme examples where monks were reported to have avoided touching a woman even those she was in need of help. The 'avoidance of the unwholesome' seems to always trump compassion and coming to aid. I wonder if there is some Hindu purity culture that has influenced this?

Maybe so

It seems that reason seems to fall to blind tradition and common sense


Seems that Buddhists tend towards deontological ethics.


Interestingly I can't seem to define Buddhas ethics, be it deontological, consequentialist, natural ethics, sceptical or subjective etc.

To be the seem to be consequentialist, since they aim at the outcome of letting to. However I'm still not so sure.


Any thoughts?
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Samma
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by Samma » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:06 am

Would you be violent, and possibly kill, a gang that was gang raping a woman if you had access to a gun. Or would you be mindful and remain in equanimity and let it continue to its conclusion?
Certainly equanimity is not best in every circumstance. Maybe the best course there is something like fire a couple shots to scare them off.
That from an early Buddhist perspective equanimity is not considered as invariably superior to the other divine abodes can be seen in a passage in the A#guttara-nikāya. This passage reports that Sāriputta was publicly contradicted several times
by another monk. The Buddha finally intervened and upbraided the other monks for not intervening earlier (AN III 194). Why, he asked, did they not have compassion when a
senior monk was being vexed in public, and instead continued to look on with equanimity? This passage shows that in early Buddhism equanimity was not considered as the appropriate response to every situation. Instead, at times an active intervention is required and should be undertaken, out of compassion. (Analayo, fromcraving p 115)
Interestingly I can't seem to define Buddhas ethics, be it deontological, consequentialist, natural ethics, sceptical or subjective etc.
To be the seem to be consequentialist, since they aim at the outcome of letting to. However I'm still not so sure.
I suppose its because he did not try to compose some unifying ethical theory.
There is a section in Peter Harvey's An Introduction to Buddhist ethics p49 on Comparisons with Western ethical systems.
Overall, the rich field of Buddhist ethics would be narrowed by
wholly collapsing it into any single one of the Kantian, Aristotelian or
Utilitarian models, though Buddhism agrees with each in respectively
acknowledging the importance of (1) a good motivating will, (2) cultivation of character, and (3) the reduction of suffering in others and
oneself. (Harvey, p.51)

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tiltbillings
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:07 am

clw_uk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
clw_uk wrote:
Does that break Buddhist moral code, or is the Buddhist moral code subjective/relative?
You tell me.

Is then murder justified in Buddhism, if it saves lives?
You tell me.

I was asking you ... :coffee:
So, in other words, you have no idea.
>> 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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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:21 am

So, in other words, you have no idea.

Once again, I was asking Your opinion

So it's not a case of if im guessing or not, since I haven't stated my position, not yet anyway, but have asked for yours. It's a case of you actually responding to a post, which once again your failing to do.


I dread to think how you would perform in an actual face to face debate :/
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tiltbillings
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:29 am

clw_uk wrote:
So, in other words, you have no idea.

Once again, I was asking Your opinion

So it's not a case of if im guessing or not, since I haven't stated my position, not yet anyway, but have asked for yours. It's a case of you actually responding to a post, which once again your failing to do.


I dread to think how you would perform in an actual face to face debate :/
Better than you, no doubt. At this point in the discussion, you need to be stating what you think rather than asking others here to do the heavy lifting.
>> 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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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:32 am

Better than you, no doubt. At this point in the discussion, you need to be stating what you think rather than asking others here to do the heavy lifting.

No dear, you need to answer my post first ;)

Better than you, no doubt
I would be careful of inductive reasoning ;)
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tiltbillings
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:34 am

clw_uk wrote:
I would be careful of inductive reasoning
It is direct observation from the rebirth thread.
>> 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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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:39 am

tiltbillings wrote:
clw_uk wrote:
I would be careful of inductive reasoning
It is direct observation from the rebirth thread.

As I said, be careful of inductive reasoning dear


Just because the sun arose today, it doesn't mean it will tomorrow (which was the implication of your flimsy post)


:)
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tiltbillings
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:41 am

clw_uk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
clw_uk wrote:
I would be careful of inductive reasoning
It is direct observation from the rebirth thread.

As I said, be careful of inductive reasoning dear


Just because the sun arose today, it doesn't mean it certainly will tomorrow (which was the implication of your flimsy post)
So, as you have consistently argued poorly in the past, I can safely assume that you are going to continue that trend, though I would have no problem with being shown to be wrong. Good luck with 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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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:46 am

Well if you dont answer me, then how can you see if I fail again or not, in your eyes :)

Yet atm I'm better off getting blood from a stone than getting a meaningful response from you


Though on a side note, your understanding of my recent posts in the rebirth thread has been, shall we say, poor at best. :P
Last edited by clw_uk on Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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clw_uk
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by clw_uk » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:56 am

I suppose its because he did not try to compose some unifying ethical theory.
There is a section in Peter Harvey's An Introduction to Buddhist ethics p49 on Comparisons with Western ethical systems.
Interesting point

Would you see western ethical theories as a failure as they try to reduce morality to one concept?
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Samma
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Re: Improving Buddhism/The Imperfect Buddha

Post by Samma » Fri Sep 20, 2013 2:34 am

I don't know, what constitutes a failure, all the various well known theories tend to address and make good points right?
A key aspect of Western ethical systems is that moral prescriptions
should be universally applicable to all people who can understand them.
Buddhism, though, is generally gradualist in approach, so while it has
ethical norms which all should follow from a sense of sympathy with
fellow beings (such as not killing living beings), others only apply to those
who are ready for them, as their commitment to moral and spiritual
training deepens. (Harvey, p. 51)
Remembering what was said and done long ago :reading: ...chp 16 of idiots guide to ethics makes the points of mixing recipes, "Life is complicated, and no single theory can adequately handle all the myriad life-and-death dilemmas that crop up."
http://www.books.google.com/books?id=IN ... ing+Ethics

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