Buddhists and politics

A place to bring a contemplative / Dharmic perspective and opinions to current events and politics.
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clw_uk
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Buddhists and politics

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:11 am

Its been my experience in life that most Buddhists tend to be left wing as opposed to conservative or right wing/libertarian.


Why do you think that is?
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Mr Man
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Mr Man » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:19 am

Have a look at this forum. Have a look at the admin team. You have come to the home of right wing Buddhism.

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Polar Bear
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Polar Bear » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:19 am

Because conservative parties seem to care less about sentient beings. They seem to care less about the environment, less about animals, less about the poor, less about the sick, less about the welfare of people in other countries, and less about actively promoting the welfare of citizens through good education, safety nets etc. They seem to more obviously serve corporate interests rather than, or at the expense of, people and the rest of the biosphere.

:anjali:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

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clw_uk
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:20 am

polarbear101 wrote:Because conservative parties seem to care less about sentient beings. They seem to care less about the environment, less about animals, less about the poor, less about the sick, less about the welfare of people in other countries, and less about actively promoting the welfare of citizens through good education, safety nets etc. They seem to more obviously serve corporate interests rather than, or at the expense of, people and the rest of the biosphere.

:anjali:
Or the opposite
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clw_uk
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:21 am

Mr Man wrote:Have a look at this forum. Have a look at the admin team. You have come to the home of right wing Buddhism.
You must be pretty far left if you think the admins are right wing. Centre right at best.
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clw_uk
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:22 am

Mr Man wrote:Have a look at this forum. Have a look at the admin team. You have come to the home of right wing Buddhism.

But being centre right or right wing is satisfying. Too many Buddhists and Buddhist groups are left wing. Seems all you get are echo-chambers and censors in Buddhist groups the last few years. Its good to if its jazzed up a bit, IMO
Last edited by clw_uk on Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:23 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Mr Man
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Mr Man » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:23 am

clw_uk wrote:
Mr Man wrote:Have a look at this forum. Have a look at the admin team. You have come to the home of right wing Buddhism.
You must be pretty far left if you think the admins are right wing. Centre right at best.
I'm not.

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Kim OHara
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Kim OHara » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:25 am

polarbear101 wrote:Because conservative parties seem to care less about sentient beings. They seem to care less about the environment, less about animals, less about the poor, less about the sick, less about the welfare of people in other countries, and less about actively promoting the welfare of citizens through good education, safety nets etc. They seem to more obviously serve corporate interests rather than, or at the expense of, people and the rest of the biosphere.

:anjali:
That's the way I see it, too. Maybe Oz isn't so different from the Northern Hemisphere after all.

:namaste:
Kim

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Mr Man
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Mr Man » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:26 am

clw_uk wrote:Too many Buddhists and Buddhist groups are left wing. Seems all you get are echo-chambers and censors in Buddhist groups the last few years.
Which Buddhist groups do you attend? and why "Too many"
clw_uk wrote: Its good to if its jazzed up a bit, IMO
Is that what you are trying to do?

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Kim OHara
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Kim OHara » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:34 am

Mr Man wrote:
clw_uk wrote:
Mr Man wrote:Have a look at this forum. Have a look at the admin team. You have come to the home of right wing Buddhism.
You must be pretty far left if you think the admins are right wing. Centre right at best.
I'm not.
Depends on your frame of reference. Left-wing in US terms is centre-right in European and Oz terms.
:thinking:

More broadly, however, Theravada is "conservative" by its very definition and somewhat authoritarian in its reluctance to tolerate change - even compared to other schools of Buddhism, let alone most Xtian and Islamic schools - so calling it "right wing Buddhism" isn't totally inappropriate.
But the simple-minded right-left dichotomy doesn't do anyone much justice. Conservative socially, economically, or both? Laissez-faire or radical anarchist? Sexually permissive or not? Or any combination of the above.

:namaste:
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clw_uk
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:39 am

Mr Man
Which Buddhist groups do you attend? and why "Too many"
Some in the UK and various pages and groups online throughout the years




Is that what you are trying to do?
No. I just express my opinions. Some people like it, others do not. It's better though that all voices can be heard, don't you think?
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Bundokji
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Bundokji » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:49 am

Maybe this is more common among western Buddhists, so your observation might be biased.

During the last few decades, the value system of the western culture has been transformed. The advancement in technology as well as major wars such as WW2 and the cold war (especially Vietnam) caused a reaction. The relative increase in wealth which was not accompanied by reducing suffering pushed more people to question the reality of common sense, so more emphasis on the individual and on the deconstruction of meaning.

Buddhism also focuses on the individual and can appear to be deconstructing our common sense (Buddhists argue a lot whether they exist or not!), but for totally different reasons than what is happening in the west. The common understanding of freedom in the west is linked to enabling the individual to do whatever he wants (as long as he is not hurting anyone).

Buddhism, instead of forcing people to follow it, it simply invites people to investigate, which seems to be compatible with the temperament of left leaning people. Also the Buddhist doctrine of not self seems to offer consolation to minorities and people who sympathize with them (which are mostly left wing)
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.

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clw_uk
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by clw_uk » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:50 am

Bundokji wrote:Maybe this is more common among western Buddhists, so your observation might be biased.

During the last few decades, the value system of the western culture has been transformed. The advancement in technology as well as major wars such as WW2 and the cold war (especially Vietnam) caused a reaction. The relative increase in wealth which was not accompanied by reducing suffering pushed more people to question the reality of common sense, so more emphasis on the individual and on the deconstruction of meaning.

Buddhism also focuses on the individual and can appear to be deconstructing our common sense (Buddhists argue a lot whether they exist or not!), but for totally different reasons than what is happening in the west. The common understanding of freedom in the west is linked to enabling the individual to do whatever he wants (as long as he is not hurting anyone).

Buddhism, instead of forcing people to follow it, it simply invites people to investigate, which seems to be compatible with the temperament of left leaning people. Also the Buddhist doctrine of not self seems to offer consolation to minorities and people who sympathize with them (which are mostly left wing)
A good post :smile:
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Mr Man
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Mr Man » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:52 am

Kim OHara wrote:
Mr Man wrote:
I'm not.
Depends on your frame of reference. Left-wing in US terms is centre-right in European and Oz terms.
:thinking:
That's true. I would see "far left" as a fully committed communist, revolutionary Marxist, Trotskyite etc.
Kim OHara wrote: More broadly, however, Theravada is "conservative" by its very definition and somewhat authoritarian in its reluctance to tolerate change - even compared to other schools of Buddhism, let alone most Xtian and Islamic schools - so calling it "right wing Buddhism" isn't totally inappropriate.
But the simple-minded right-left dichotomy doesn't do anyone much justice. Conservative socially, economically, or both? Laissez-faire or radical anarchist? Sexually permissive or not? Or any combination of the above.
I agree

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Mr Man
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Re: Buddhists and politics

Post by Mr Man » Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:58 am

clw_uk wrote:Mr Man
Which Buddhist groups do you attend? and why "Too many"
Some in the UK and various pages and groups online throughout the years
Well the Theravada groups I have had contact with in the UK have all seemed fairly apolitical (as a group) and more interested in the practice of Buddhism.

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