Buddhism under persecution

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Manopubbangama
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Buddhism under persecution

Post by Manopubbangama » Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:08 pm

We are extremely lucky right now in the West that there is no real threat of persecution at the moment.

I'm wondering if there is a correct way to propagate Dhamma under persecution.

A few historic examples of Persecution would be:

The Leftist-Atheist Khmer Rouge - Virtually annihilated Theravada in Cambodia.

The Confucian persecutions in China.

Islamic liquidation of Buddhism in Afghanistan and Indonesia.

etc
Sabbe Sankhara Anicca - Sabbe Sankhara Dukkha - Sabbe Dhamma Anatta

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Sam Vara
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:30 pm

Manopubbangama wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:08 pm
We are extremely lucky right now in the West that there is no real threat of persecution at the moment.

I'm wondering if there is a correct way to propagate Dhamma under persecution.

A few historic examples of Persecution would be:

The Leftist-Atheist Khmer Rouge - Virtually annihilated Theravada in Cambodia.

The Confucian persecutions in China.

Islamic liquidation of Buddhism in Afghanistan and Indonesia.

etc
Here is a similar idea expressed in the suttas. But remember that it might be a counsel of perfection!
"Lord, there is a country called Sunaparanta. I am going to live there."

"Punna, the Sunaparanta people are fierce. They are rough. If they insult and ridicule you, what will you think?"

"If they insult and ridicule me, I will think, 'These Sunaparanta people are civilized, very civilized, in that they don't hit me with their hands.' That is what I will think, O Blessed One. That is what I will think, O One Well-gone."

"But if they hit you with their hands, what will you think?"

"...I will think, 'These Sunaparanta people are civilized, very civilized, in that they don't hit me with a clod.'..."

"But if they hit you with a clod...?"

"...I will think, 'These Sunaparanta people are civilized, very civilized, in that they don't hit me with a stick.'..."

"But if they hit you with a stick...?"

"...I will think, 'These Sunaparanta people are civilized, very civilized, in that they don't hit me with a knife.'..."

"But if they hit you with a knife...?"

"...I will think, 'These Sunaparanta people are civilized, very civilized, in that they don't take my life with a sharp knife.'..."

"But if they take your life with a sharp knife...?"

"If they take my life with a sharp knife, I will think, 'There are disciples of the Blessed One who — horrified, humiliated, and disgusted by the body and by life — have sought for an assassin, but here I have met my assassin without searching for him.' [1] That is what I will think, O Blessed One. That is what I will think, O One Well-gone."

"Good, Punna, very good. Possessing such calm and self-control you are fit to dwell among the Sunaparantans. Now it is time to do as you see fit."
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

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Zom
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by Zom » Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:45 pm

I'm wondering if there is a correct way to propagate Dhamma under persecution.
Don't tell anyone. Luckily, for the most part everything must be done inside your own mind 8-)

SarathW
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by SarathW » Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:54 pm

A true Buddhist must be able to function under any condition.
The problem in declining Buddhism is due to not understanding the Buddhism.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Manopubbangama
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by Manopubbangama » Sat Oct 27, 2018 11:20 pm

The Sunaparanta people didn't create mass graves of monks like the Khmer Rouge did.

At any time an ideology can spread like wildfire and destroy all in its path like what was represented in the story of MN 56.

Just consider at any one time what you are NOT allowed to criticize and that will point to where the power of persecution lie.
Sabbe Sankhara Anicca - Sabbe Sankhara Dukkha - Sabbe Dhamma Anatta

SarathW
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by SarathW » Sun Oct 28, 2018 12:20 am

For instance, see what is happening in Tibet.
This happened in throughout the history.
What we should investigate is how Buddhism survive 2600 years.
We have to repeat the same strategy.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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DooDoot
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by DooDoot » Sun Oct 28, 2018 1:56 am

Manopubbangama wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:08 pm
The Leftist-Atheist Khmer Rouge - Virtually annihilated Theravada in Cambodia.
The above does not sound like a persecution of Buddhism but a persecution of the entire society. A similar persecution is the most likely to occur in the near future as Europe and the USA evolve towards a totalitarian dystopia. The Neo-Cons that run the US govt are Trotskyites.
Manopubbangama wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:08 pm
The Confucian persecutions in China.
We might have to investigate whether the Buddhists in China did karma to reap a bad result.
Manopubbangama wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:08 pm
Islamic liquidation of Buddhism in Afghanistan and Indonesia.
The Mongols (rather than Arabs and Persians) did this; many of who were originally Buddhists or trained in Buddhism.
SarathW wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 12:20 am
For instance, see what is happening in Tibet.
Is Buddhism illegal in Tibet? Or did the Dalai Lama break/transgress the Seventeen Point Agreement? :shrug:

SarathW
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by SarathW » Sun Oct 28, 2018 3:14 am

Is Buddhism illegal in Tibet?
I am not sure.
This is what happens when Buddhist monks try to govern a country.
Governing a country is not up to monks.
I strongly oppose when monks involve in politics even in Sri Lanka.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

dharmacorps
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by dharmacorps » Sun Oct 28, 2018 10:53 pm

The dhamma won't always be proclaimed. At some point, it will fall away from existence as per the suttas. When that happens its really up to humanity it seems. That's why its best to practice it while we are here in this life.

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pilgrim
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by pilgrim » Sun Oct 28, 2018 11:46 pm

I'm not sure if it can be considered as persecution but Buddhism is suppressed or manipulated in all Communist countries. In Korea, it is often attacked by fundamentalist Christians. It Bangladesh and NE India, it is victimised by Muslims, often with the backing of the government. Buddhism is not allowed in Islamic countries in the middle east.

This is a good summary page of persecutions past and present.
https://ipfs.io/ipfs/QmXoypizjW3WknFiJn ... hists.html

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Manopubbangama
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by Manopubbangama » Mon Oct 29, 2018 7:29 pm

pilgrim wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 11:46 pm
I'm not sure if it can be considered as persecution but Buddhism is suppressed or manipulated in all Communist countries. In Korea, it is often attacked by fundamentalist Christians. It Bangladesh and NE India, it is victimised by Muslims, often with the backing of the government. Buddhism is not allowed in Islamic countries in the middle east.

This is a good summary page of persecutions past and present.
https://ipfs.io/ipfs/QmXoypizjW3WknFiJn ... hists.html
Great link.

All leftwing indoctrination seeps into Buddhist institutions in Anglo countries; not just those communist countries (where Christianity is also manipulated).

That guy with the tie, Schopen, frazzled a lot of people with his "Buddhas as businessman" video, but we should be honest with ourselves that Buddhism is an institute that Marx would call "reactionary" and with good reason.

Buddha told his followers, who were not monks, to make a lot of money and to give chunks of it to the Sangha.

He had no intention whatsoever to level society and create a new intelligensia to administer economic equality.

The Buddhist monuments we all see today were funded by extremely rich men.
Sabbe Sankhara Anicca - Sabbe Sankhara Dukkha - Sabbe Dhamma Anatta

Justsit
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by Justsit » Mon Oct 29, 2018 8:15 pm

SarathW wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 3:14 am
Is Buddhism illegal in Tibet?
I am not sure.
"Buddhism" as defined by the Chinese government is not illegal in Tibet. Buddhism as traditionally practiced in Tibet is frowned upon; images of and references to the Dalai Lama, Panchen Lama, etc. are strictly forbidden and breaches of that policy can result in imprisonment. The monks in the Potala Palace in Lhasa, the DL's former residence and the seat of government, must all be approved by the Chinese Communist Party and must espouse that version of "Buddhism." The Party also appoints its own high Lamas. The traditional teachings are still practiced in the more rural areas of the country, and many practitioners there maintain secret allegiance to the DL.

Historically, Tibet was a Buddhist theocracy from about the 7th CenturyAD until the Chinese invasion in 1959. The secular Tibetan government administration remains intact in exile in India. The current DL resides in Dharamsala, India.

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AgarikaJ
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by AgarikaJ » Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:57 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 3:14 am
This is what happens when Buddhist monks try to govern a country.
Governing a country is not up to monks.
I strongly oppose when monks involve in politics even in Sri Lanka.
I would concur; however, from the earliest days on, Buddhism was closely attached to the ruling classes throughout India and Southeast Asia, who used it as a tool to legitimize their rulership. Therefore, the Buddha advised a strong relationship between the Sangha and ruling classes.

Where it all goes wrong is, when monks decide to take bureaucratic tasks or even managing money tasks upon themselves. From this, very quickly you get exclusive structures who have little to do with realizing the Dhamma -- often leading to (sometimes violent) backlash when the ruling classes change.

Now how should a monk react under persecution? By either bearing it quietly (see the Sutta posted by Sam Vara) or by moving away from it... as a Sangha cannot function properly any more, if it's connection to the laiety is broken. And it is not the task for any monk to go naked or hungry, but to search out circumstances that allow the betterment of is attainments.
The teaching is a lake with shores of ethics, unclouded, praised by the fine to the good.
There the knowledgeable go to bathe, and cross to the far shore without getting wet.
[SN 7.21]

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DooDoot
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by DooDoot » Tue Oct 30, 2018 10:38 am

AgarikaJ wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:57 am
Therefore, the Buddha advised a strong relationship between the Sangha and ruling classes.
Could you kindly post some examples of the Buddha's advice about this, from the suttas? Thanks

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AgarikaJ
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Re: Buddhism under persecution

Post by AgarikaJ » Tue Oct 30, 2018 2:25 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 10:38 am
AgarikaJ wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:57 am
Therefore, the Buddha advised a strong relationship between the Sangha and ruling classes.
Could you kindly post some examples of the Buddha's advice about this, from the suttas? Thanks
Not quite subtle, the Buddha proposed, that as long as rulers strengthened the Sangha, they themselves will be strengthened.
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .vaji.html
"What have you heard, Ananda: do the Vajjis duly protect and guard the arahats, so that those who have not come to the realm yet might do so, and those who have already come might live there in peace?"
"I have heard, Lord, that they do."
"So long, Ananda, as this is the case, the growth of the Vajjis is to be expected, not their decline."
Furthermore, while it is true that the Buddha never openly spoke out in favor of aligning the Sangha with the ruling classes of their region -- or rather, no such word was written down later in the Suttas -- actions sometimes speak louder than words.
The rain retreats of the formative years of the Sangha were spent by him in the urban centers of power on the Gangetic Plain, not any more in the poor rural surroundings to which he was brought back -- again according to the Suttas -- only by his travels towards the end of his life.
King Pasenadi and Kind Bimbisara, for example, from the earliest days of the Sangha onwards, where strong patrons and the Buddha sought out contact to them on many occasions, and he quite readily accepted presents from them and other rulers of the region.
http://www.palikanon.com/english/pali_n ... senadi.htm
http://www.palikanon.com/english/pali_n ... bisara.htm

No Sutta quote, but also see as an introduction: The Early Buddhist View of the State
https://www.jstor.org/stable/596944
Royal Support was one of the leading factors that helped the spread of early Buddhism in India.
...
The Buddha established a special relationship with the monarchs of his time and the creed established by him benefited in many ways from royal patronage. These kings built monasteries for the Sangha and amended many of their laws which otherwise would have made the Sangha's activities very difficult, if not impossible.
...
Pasenadi claimed a special bond between him and the Enlightened One because both were Kosalans while Bimbisara's special interest in the Buddha was due to the fact that much of the Buddha's ministry was spent in his domain of Maghada.
And already in the Suttas, we find the ideal of the Wheel-turning Monarch (cakkavatti),
http://enlight.lib.ntu.edu.tw/FULLTEXT/ ... 542175.pdf
https://suttacentral.net/dn17/
a king who advances the dhamma through his governance. A basic description of how a king becomes a wheel-turner, and of the seven treasures that he obtains by doing so, is given in the Mahāsudassana Sutta.
Maybe less relevant, but still part of Pali literature, in the Jatakas we can read about the Ten duties of the righteous king (the Rajādhamma, see: Jātaka 385).
The teaching is a lake with shores of ethics, unclouded, praised by the fine to the good.
There the knowledgeable go to bathe, and cross to the far shore without getting wet.
[SN 7.21]

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