Sweeping ants.

Buddhist ethical conduct including the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).
Post Reply
User avatar
Miguel
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2016 4:22 am
Location: Oviedo, Spain.

Sweeping ants.

Post by Miguel » Sun Aug 27, 2017 1:17 am

Sometimes, when I'm sweeping the floor, I notice little ants running among the dust and dry leaves. I try my best not to sweep them away too, but sometimes they, too alarmed and not knowing what is going on, run towards the broom. Even if I try to be careful, some of them always end injured (and sometimes, to speak truthfully, it's frustrating to be trying not to harm them when I'm sweeping an entire corridor, and I end up just doing it all as quickly as I can). Obviously I don't try to kill them, but if I truly wanted to, I think I could hurt none (at the cost of spending half a day sweeping very carefully a couple meters of a courtyard, for example).

Although I try to remember myself that Buddhist ethics tend to be in the middle ground, between extreme scrupulousness and lax negligence, this question still stays in my mind, because I'm not harming them fully without knowing, even if it's not on purpose that I do so: am I acting wrong? How do monks in forest monasteries, when sweeping the dirt paths, deal with little creatures like these?

User avatar
TreeSleeper
Posts: 35
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:27 pm

Re: Sweeping ants.

Post by TreeSleeper » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:06 am

Miguel wrote:Sometimes, when I'm sweeping the floor, I notice little ants running among the dust and dry leaves. I try my best not to sweep them away too, but sometimes they, too alarmed and not knowing what is going on, run towards the broom. Even if I try to be careful, some of them always end injured (and sometimes, to speak truthfully, it's frustrating to be trying not to harm them when I'm sweeping an entire corridor, and I end up just doing it all as quickly as I can). Obviously I don't try to kill them, but if I truly wanted to, I think I could hurt none (at the cost of spending half a day sweeping very carefully a couple meters of a courtyard, for example).

Although I try to remember myself that Buddhist ethics tend to be in the middle ground, between extreme scrupulousness and lax negligence, this question still stays in my mind, because I'm not harming them fully without knowing, even if it's not on purpose that I do so: am I acting wrong? How do monks in forest monasteries, when sweeping the dirt paths, deal with little creatures like these?
Just try as hard as you can not to kill any bugs.

User avatar
BasementBuddhist
Posts: 292
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 1:03 pm

Re: Sweeping ants.

Post by BasementBuddhist » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:37 pm

Some will die. That is just how life is. Do your best.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 22 guests