While I find this a reasonable perspective, it doesn't tell the whole story, IMO.Sanghamitta wrote:A very good point indeed. What we have is a way of life preserved by ( mostly ) male monastics.jcsuperstar wrote:i think it may be helpful to keep in mind that there are very few suttas in regards to householders in comparison to those aimed at monastics for the simple fact that it was monastics that remembered and kept the discourses. if it had been householders who took the initiative to remember and keep the discourses we'd probably have a different canon all together.
Which must be extremely useful if you are a male who intends to live as a monastic or like one.
For the majority of lay Buddhists who do not it is not necessarily useful to be reminded that we fail the gold standard of the Vinaya. It would be useful to have the positive values of the FIVE precepts held up as OUR gold standard and reinforced when questions are asked about ethics, sexuality, etc.
The kamma for most of us is how to make the best of the teachings for lay people in the situations that they are in. Not in setting comparisons with those who have adopted the life of a Sangha member.
Some of those who have adopted the life of a Sangha member have also been householders, some with children and other responsibilities. Many have become monastics when the importance of renunciation and a complete dedication to practice became apparent to them, sometimes at the urging of a monastic.
So to extol the virtues of monastic life can actually be really helpful.
Of course it is a personal choice and it is unproductive to pass judgment. Some lay people also manage to renounce attachments in profound ways. But in whatever field, in order to succeed, one has to give it 100%. And typically (but not always) in lay life other priorities come first.