Help wanted: what do suttas say, about metta even for very evil people?

Buddhist ethical conduct including the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).
manas
Posts: 2654
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:04 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Help wanted: what do suttas say, about metta even for very evil people?

Post by manas »

I read every reply and quote, and I thank you all. Reading some of them, I literally got tears in my eyes - because, I really do want to learn how to be free from ill-will, towards any being whatsoever. It has come to mean more to me lately, especially. I can see how much freer my heart would feel, were I able to simply 'not go there' anymore. To bring forth more wholesome fabrications to bear on the difficult situation (ie, hearing of such crimes in the news, etc).

I could reply to each comment individually, but I would prefer to just state that I read every reply, and that I will note what especially resonates with me, from reading the sum total of your helpful contributions.

Equanimity: all beings are owners of their kamma, heirs to their kamma, born of their kamma, related through their kamma, abide supported by their kamma...whatever kamma they shall do, for good of for ill, of that they will be the heir.."

I need more equanimity in general, also the ability to let go of the notion that i could somehow protect all those vulnerable kids (a wholesome sentiment, but unrealistic in the extreme! and of course I've always known it's impossible, but the wish has been there at times) - in any case, they too might be experiencing the results of past bad kamma, of course we cannot know at this stage, but we have all probably done some atrocious things during our long,long wandering though Samsara...and probably paid dearly for that also, although without the higher knowledge of recollection of previous lives, we can only take that as a 'reasonable working hypothesis' for now, one that does make good sense to me, however. In a sense, no-one is truly innocent; we're all creating & reaping kamma all the time.

I will look up that sutta where it says, 'what should I expect?' Was the Buddha implying here, 'this is what happens in Samsaric life, why are you so surprised?' or something along those lines?

Lastly, someone wrote about wishing the folks doing great harm to others, would cease and desist - in other words, 'may you learn the causes for true happiness, and act on that knowledge for your own benefit, and that of others', or words to that effect, which would entail ceasing & desisting from the evil actions they are doing, of course. When I contemplate that, I feel this sense of sadness, yes, but not anger. I can feel compassion for both victim and aggressor. I think my 'blockage' regarding this issue, is being resolved, thanks to all your good advice. I'm not saying there is not work to do, just that, I have some great advice and links to suttas I can utilize.

As I wrote in my opening post, the wish to be free of ill-will, has been steadily increasing within me for a while. In a sense, my heart has grown somewhat 'weary' of ill-will; there's this perception of it as a burden (and as an 'illness', as in the five hindrances simile). Not just because it hinders meditation, but because, I would like to be able to extend goodwill to all beings, without exception - and now I feel, I'm on the path to that.

This Forum is a great blessing, that we can get assistance like this, from around the world. A heartfelt thanks to everyone once more.

So to finish off...

May all beings without exception, abide in goodwill & kindness, learn the causes for true happiness, and act in such a way that brings happiness to both themselves and others. :heart:

🙏🙏🙏
“It would be better for the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person to hold to the body composed of the four great elements, rather than the mind, as the self. Why is that? Because this body composed of the four great elements is seen standing for a year, two years, three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred years or more. But what’s called ‘mind,’ ‘intellect,’ or ‘consciousness’ by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another." - SN 12:61 (excerpt)

JohnK
Posts: 1107
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:06 pm
Location: Tetons, Wyoming, USA

Re: Help wanted: what do suttas say, about metta even for very evil people?

Post by JohnK »

manas wrote:
Fri Jan 31, 2020 4:59 am
...
This Forum is a great blessing, that we can get assistance like this, from around the world. A heartfelt thanks to everyone once more.

So to finish off...

May all beings without exception, abide in goodwill & kindness, learn the causes for true happiness, and act in such a way that brings happiness to both themselves and others. :heart:

🙏🙏🙏
:goodpost:
That was a very beautiful post to close the thread.
:bow:
Those who grasp at perceptions & views wander the internet creating friction. [based on Sn4:9,v.847]

User avatar
confusedlayman
Posts: 1404
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:16 am

Re: Help wanted: what do suttas say, about metta even for very evil people?

Post by confusedlayman »

JohnK wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:13 pm
manas wrote:
Fri Jan 31, 2020 4:59 am
...
This Forum is a great blessing, that we can get assistance like this, from around the world. A heartfelt thanks to everyone once more.

So to finish off...

May all beings without exception, abide in goodwill & kindness, learn the causes for true happiness, and act in such a way that brings happiness to both themselves and others. :heart:

🙏🙏🙏
:goodpost:
That was a very beautiful post to close the thread.
:bow:
Stop creating human being and see aggregates as aggregates.
Find a tree and practice jhana or dont regret later- Buddha
Something exist, dont exist, both exist and non exist, neither exist nor dont exist .. all these four possibilities are wrong- Nagarjuna
Find a dhamma companion or roam alone like rhinoceros in the wild- Buddha
If you are not happy even after following 8NP then you are doing it wrong- CL (confused layman)

User avatar
Nicolas
Posts: 1037
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2014 8:59 pm
Location: Somerville, MA, USA

Re: Help wanted: what do suttas say, about metta even for very evil people?

Post by Nicolas »

Yet the Buddha taught metta towards all beings, amongst other “being”-related Dhamma. There are stages in the path, and for some, having intermediary purification of mind of this kind can be useful without going straight to not seeing beings and only seeing aggregates.

Post Reply