"The Broken Buddha" by Ven.Dhammika and other scandals

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Ben
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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by Ben » Thu Jul 18, 2013 5:36 am

Thank you, Bhante.
:anjali:
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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Jul 18, 2013 5:49 am

forestmat wrote:Feel free to take whatever you believe is the correct course of action with this thread.
I am not a moderator here. I already took what I believe to be correct course of action by airing my opinions. However, you didn't answer my question about your reasons for posting these stories. Are you a non-Buddhist who is just trolling, or do you have some other motivation? Do you honestly think you're doing us all a favour by highlighting these scandals? What could it possibly achieve?
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Ben
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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by Ben » Thu Jul 18, 2013 6:10 am

forestmat wrote:
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote: No one's trying to sweep things under the carpet, but repeating scandals from public newspapers on a Buddhist discussion forum is a waste of everyone's time — I regard it as trolling. We can all find those articles ourselves if we're interested in such tittle-tattle.
Greetings Bhikkhu Pesala,

apologies if you feel that my post in the Lounge forum was 'trolling'.

Feel free to take whatever you believe is the correct course of action with this thread.
Hi Forestmat,

For what its worth - I don't consider what you were doing as intentionally trolling.

However, we do need to be mindful that many of the things we come across be they publications, newspaper articles or news stories on TV or radio are at best a version of the truth. At worst - little more than unsupported allegation. Because something gets published or is aired by the BBC or some other authority - it doesn't mean that its representative of the truth or correct. Quite often, it is incomplete, biased and one-sided. Be sure that many issues whether they relate to events within a monastery or in the secular world are far more complicated than what is presented in the press (or other publications).

All of us need to be careful that we do not pour petrol on the fire by propagating untested allegation as fact or participating in trial by popular opinion. While Dhamma Wheel is a discussion forum devoted to the Dhamma of the Theravada - no one here has an absolute right to discussion. All of us have a responsibility to ourselves and to protect the Dhamma and the best way we can do that is by devoting ourselves to walking on the path. If we personally know of misdeeds - then your concerns should be lodged with the relevant authorities.
The moderators, administrators and I will be reviewing our terms of service with regards to right speech in light of recent discussions.
kind regards,

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com..

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Mr Man
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Re: Scandals in the Sangha and the relevance to our practice

Post by Mr Man » Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:26 am

I think it is important moment when you realise your teachers aren't what you would like them to be. Buddhism as it "is" is not what I want to be. Monks behave in a way that "I" don't think is appropriate & it goes on - this is the world.

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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by BlackBird » Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:33 am

I don't consider what you have done trolling, forestmat, and I don't think you should be subjected to such criticism, I find the fact that you have been, quite an unjustified judgement and quite ironic given the sentiments expressed in this thread. I hope your experience in this thread has not discouraged you from participating on these forums, it shouldn't.

I''ll just leave it at that.
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta

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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by forestmat » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:18 am

Clearly I misunderstood the meaning of ''Lounge" - Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

Bhikkhu Pesala - forgive me for not answering your questions...

I am a Buddhist - have lived in Asia for the best part of 20 years, including for some several years of my life in various monasteries in Thailand, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka and four years in the UK.

I am also married to a Thai and live in the northeast of Thailand where I now work as a registered photojournalist.

My motivation was nothing more than posting an article on Thai Buddhism in the Lounge forum of Dhamma Wheel of news that involved a fairly large amount of misappropriated money, coming as it does hot on the heels of the recent Luang Pu Nen Kham story. I see now that perhaps I shouldn't have posted, despite having checked first to see that other members had started similar threads by posting 'news' items.

Ben and BlackBird, thank you both for your comments.

Apologies to all for having posted - I will endeavour to be more mindful in future and may I take this opportunity to ask for your forgiveness.

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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by perkele » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:32 am

forestmat wrote:Clearly I misunderstood the meaning of ''Lounge" - Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.
No no, you did not misunderstand. It feels only maybe for some a bit "hot" at the moment. No need to apologize.
And one other very important thing that some here have noticed lately, is that sangha scandals are not really good for "casual discussion".

Although what you said was certainly not harmful.

Thank you very much for being so considerate, circumspect and patient. It seems really quite needed at this time.

:anjali:

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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by BlackBird » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:53 am

You need not apologise for posting, your intentions were clearly not as some would like to make out. And as has already been stated, had this thread not being one among many lately in the same vein, you would probably not have been criticised for posting this. Your presence here at the board is valued forestmat, do not be discouraged.

But your humility given the nature of the posts in this thread speaks volumes about yourself, I wish I could be more like you in these situations.

metta
Jack
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta

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Re: Scandals in the Sangha and the relevance to our practice

Post by perkele » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:58 am

Mr Man wrote:I think it is important moment when you realise your teachers aren't what you would like them to be. Buddhism as it "is" is not what I want to be. Monks behave in a way that "I" don't think is appropriate & it goes on - this is the world.
There are still good monks. We must learn how to support the sangha. Of course it is a question of culture. When in the culture over there all breaks down, still some noble ones search for other shores.
But the noble ones have their own customs, namely: any old lodging will do, etc...
So they will even go quite unsupported and endure much hardship.

We also have some good monks and monasteries in the West (and nuns of course, not to forget). It's a question of generosity, providing the means.

But of course also in Asia there are still good monks. We can't be so prejudiced and think we know all, only because we like to indulge in slander. Of course it's probably true, there's quite a lot of corruption. But this low mood actually comes from rejoicing in such in some subconscious depressed way. Advocates of the apocalypse can do much damage. But when really things break down we must be circumspect and also have to see how to support the noble ones that are left, if we want to benefit from the continued existence of the Buddha Sasana. I think the reason lies very much in that in our consumer culture, generosity and gratitude are mostly forgotten. So good things break down. Everyone wants to "get". But where does it come from?
Conditions must be supported.
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:In the past, I have spoken out against corruption when I knew from direct observation that it was going on, and got expelled from my last residence for my efforts. I have left another monastery of my own accord for the same reasons, and got thrown out of another because others didn't agree with me.
Such integrity must also be supported.


Of course, everyone in their own sphere, how they support and where they support and if they support, all in line with their own good intentions.
Step by step good conditions grow from good intentions.
"The giving of gifts is good", said the blessed one.
From giving, everything grows.

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Re: Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by appicchato » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:57 pm

Perhaps I'm the one that should be apologizing, I'm the one that lit the match...sorry...

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GraemeR
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Surin monk accused of B56m fraud

Post by GraemeR » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:59 pm

forestmat wrote:Clearly I misunderstood the meaning of ''Lounge" - Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

Bhikkhu Pesala - forgive me for not answering your questions...

I am a Buddhist - have lived in Asia for the best part of 20 years, including for some several years of my life in various monasteries in Thailand, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka and four years in the UK.

I am also married to a Thai and live in the northeast of Thailand where I now work as a registered photojournalist.

My motivation was nothing more than posting an article on Thai Buddhism in the Lounge forum of Dhamma Wheel of news that involved a fairly large amount of misappropriated money, coming as it does hot on the heels of the recent Luang Pu Nen Kham story. I see now that perhaps I shouldn't have posted, despite having checked first to see that other members had started similar threads by posting 'news' items.

Ben and BlackBird, thank you both for your comments.

Apologies to all for having posted - I will endeavour to be more mindful in future and may I take this opportunity to ask for your forgiveness.
Personally I can't see any reason why anyone could object to passing on a news article related to Thai Buddhism such as this

We ought to be mature enough to face up to criticism and discriminate news reports

With Metta

Graham

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Mr Man
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Re: Scandals in the Sangha and the relevance to our practice

Post by Mr Man » Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:27 pm

This is taken from Ajahn Sumedho -

Having found a teacher like Ajahn Chah, I remember wanting him to be perfect. I'd think, 'Oh, he's a marvellous teacher -- marvellous!' But then he might do something that would upset me and I'd think, 'I don't want him to do anything that upsets me because I like to think of him as being marvellous.' That was like saying, 'Ajahn Chah, be marvellous for me all the time. Don't ever do anything that will put any kind of negative thought into my mind.' So even when you find somebody that you really respect and love, there's still the suffering of attachment. Inevitably, they will do or say something that you're not going to like or approve of, causing you some kind of doubt -- and you'll suffer.

At one time, several American monks came to Wat Pah Pong, our monastery in Northeastern Thailand. They were very critical and it seemed that they only saw what was wrong with it. They didn't think Ajahn Chah was a very good teacher and they didn't like the monastery. I felt a great anger and hatred arising because they were criticising something that I loved. I felt indignant -- 'Well, if you don't like it, get out of here. He's the finest teacher in the world and if you can't see that then just GO!' That kind of attachment -- being in love or being devoted -- is suffering because if something or someone you love or like is criticised, you feel angry and indignant.

http://enlight.lib.ntu.edu.tw/FULLTEXT/ ... 139982.pdf

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Re: "The Broken Buddha" by Ven.Dhammika and other scandals

Post by DNS » Thu Jul 18, 2013 4:33 pm

Moderator note:

Lately there have been several threads relating to scandals in the Sangha. Too many threads relating to this subject gives the appearance of a tabloid. Not allowing such threads would give an appearance of hiding the truth. Therefore, we will allow the posting of scandals, as long as it remains in the frame of Right Speech, not gossiping and as long as such posts are placed into this thread. Do not make any new threads relating to Sangha scandals. Thank you for your cooperation.

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Re: "The Broken Buddha" by Ven.Dhammika and other scandals

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Jul 18, 2013 4:44 pm

Should One Criticise Shameless or Immoral Monks?
“When a person, knowing a monk to be shameless or immoral, speaks ill of him or condemns him, either directly or indirectly, does he attract the ten evil results? (Dhp v 1237) By doing so, is he free from evil or not?”
Right Speech (Sammā Vācā).
"And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech."

— SN 45.8
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Re: "The Broken Buddha" by Ven.Dhammika and other scandals

Post by tiltbillings » Thu Jul 18, 2013 5:43 pm

Thank you, Bhante.
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Should One Criticise Shameless or Immoral Monks?
“When a person, knowing a monk to be shameless or immoral, speaks ill of him or condemns him, either directly or indirectly, does he attract the ten evil results? (Dhp v 1237) By doing so, is he free from evil or not?”
Right Speech (Sammā Vācā).
"And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech."

— SN 45.8
>> 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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