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Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 7:30 pm
by identification
I heard a monk once tell a joke about one of his disciples telling him he ate cake after the noon meal. He said something like well next time you eat cake after the noon meal then share it with the rest of us, then laughed and told everyone it was a joke and he didn't say that. Funny joke, but every time I come across an opportunity to tell a joke like this in front of other people I wonder if this is breaking the fourth precept. I mean technically it's not true. I also wonder about this with songs, like if I sing a song from a songwriter and the lyrics aren't true, isn't it the case that I'm lying? Like if a song says I feel stupid and I sing that, well I don't feel stupid, so yeah.

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 7:39 pm
by Sam Vara
I don't think so, as the intention is not to deceive. Context is all. In the case of jokes, it is worth looking at whether anyone will be hurt or upset by you telling it.

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 7:48 pm
by Nicolas
Ambalatthika-rahulovada sutta (MN 61) wrote: you should train yourself, 'I will not tell a deliberate lie even in jest.'

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 8:22 pm
by Mkoll
Nicolas wrote:
Ambalatthika-rahulovada sutta (MN 61) wrote: you should train yourself, 'I will not tell a deliberate lie even in jest.'
This is the ideal way to go about it although it's not easy, especially if you like laughing at your own jokes. :P

A monk should be aiming for that though, IMO. I think it's part of developing and having stainless virtue.

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 9:15 pm
by SarathW
:goodpost: James

Life is not a laughing matter.
Even if you listening to Ajhan Braham, you can see the seriousness in his face when he come to the end of the sermon.
:thinking:

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Fri Jan 23, 2015 9:17 pm
by tiltbillings
SarathW wrote::goodpost: James

Life is not a laughing matter.
Oh?

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:29 am
by Dhammanando
Nicolas wrote:
Ambalatthika-rahulovada sutta (MN 61) wrote: you should train yourself, ‘I will not tell a deliberate lie even in jest.’
tasmātiha te, rāhula, ‘hassāpi na musā bhaṇissāmī’ti: evañhi te, rāhula, sikkhitabbaṃ.

Ñāṇamoli:
“Therefore, Rāhula, you should train thus: ‘I will not utter a falsehood even as a joke.’”

I.B. Horner:
“Wherefore, for you, Rāhula, ‘I will not speak a lie, even for fun’ – this is how you must train yourself, Rāhula.”

The scope of hassā musā is somewhat narrower than its usual English translations might seem to suggest. It would include such acts as falsely telling someone that she has a bug crawling in her hair or knowingly sending someone on a fruitless errand. It wouldn’t include telling jokes in the sense of funny fictional anecdotes with a punchline, whose fictional character is implicitly understood by speaker and audience.

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 3:50 am
by Mkoll
Thank you for that input, Bhante. :anjali:

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:01 am
by Sam Vara
Dhammanando wrote:
The scope of hassā musā is somewhat narrower than its usual English translations might seem to suggest. It would include such acts as falsely telling someone that she has a bug crawling in her hair or knowingly sending someone on a fruitless errand. It wouldn’t include telling jokes in the sense of funny fictional anecdotes with a punchline, whose fictional character is implicitly understood by speaker and audience.
Nor, as a householder, would I feel confident ascribing to a code of conduct which proscribed all story-telling. There never were three little pigs who built little houses, and this would make my children's bedtimes quite boring.

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:38 am
by Dhammanando
Sam Vara wrote:There never were three little pigs who built little houses, and this would make my children's bedtimes quite boring.
That's a great one. But when your children get a bit older you can start telling it like this...


Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:48 am
by Aloka
SarathW wrote: Life is not a laughing matter.
Even if you listening to Ajhan Braham, you can see the seriousness in his face when he come to the end of the sermon

i suggest you watch this short video of Ajahn Brahm talking about laughing together and the "Hahayana path".

.



:anjali:

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:54 pm
by Tom
Dhammanando wrote:
Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:29 am
Nicolas wrote:
Ambalatthika-rahulovada sutta (MN 61) wrote: you should train yourself, ‘I will not tell a deliberate lie even in jest.’
tasmātiha te, rāhula, ‘hassāpi na musā bhaṇissāmī’ti: evañhi te, rāhula, sikkhitabbaṃ.

Ñāṇamoli:
“Therefore, Rāhula, you should train thus: ‘I will not utter a falsehood even as a joke.’”

I.B. Horner:
“Wherefore, for you, Rāhula, ‘I will not speak a lie, even for fun’ – this is how you must train yourself, Rāhula.”

The scope of hassā musā is somewhat narrower than its usual English translations might seem to suggest. It would include such acts as falsely telling someone that she has a bug crawling in her hair or knowingly sending someone on a fruitless errand. It wouldn’t include telling jokes in the sense of funny fictional anecdotes with a punchline, whose fictional character is implicitly understood by speaker and audience.
so as long as there is no intent to deceive with a joke it wouldn't fall under this category?

Re: Lying and telling jokes.

Posted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:33 am
by Dhammarakkhito
“Lying—when indulged in, developed, & pursued—is something that leads to hell, leads to rebirth as a common animal, leads to the realm of the hungry ghosts. The slightest of all the results coming from lying is that, when one becomes a human being, it leads to being falsely accused.
...
“Idle chatter—when indulged in, developed, & pursued—is something that leads to hell, leads to rebirth as a common animal, leads to the realm of the hungry ghosts. The slightest of all the results coming from idle chatter is that, when one becomes a human being, it leads to words that aren’t worth taking to heart.

https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/AN/AN8_40.html

something like a storytelling joke with a punchline or one based on wordplay is more idle chatter but it's still bad kamma. something more like a lie (even in jest) is to tell someone they have a spider in their hair so they twirl around and get in a frenzy; it's found in the world to be 'funny' but it's actually very cruel. and for some, jokes arent apparent all the time because of tiredness or a condition like autism
only speak words that are beneficial, as prescribed in suttas about right speech. remember as well that the buddha said that a comedian intoxicates his crowd and will end up the hell of laughter

here, timestamped, ajahn siripanyo talks about cracking jokes as a form of addiction, a sense pleasure

songs do say generally very foolish, useless things and that's why they shouldn't be sung or listened to. they are wrong speech entwined in pleasant tones so they get stuck in your head and program you to evil. and the more you engage in something the more your mind inclines to that. this is why with sīla we abstain from misconduct in order to take an impartial look at it and ultimately destroy the conditions for misconduct to arise. happiness is better found outside frivolous speech; is a few seconds of laughter worth the cycle of death and rebirth?