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Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:35 am
by Ytrog
I was wondering: non-monogamous relationship forms like polyamory are increasingly common and personally I think love shared is love multiplied. I wonder however if this is against the Dhamma or if it is compatible?

See also: https://www.morethantwo.com/

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:46 am
by DooDoot
Hi Ytrog

My impression is the Buddhist "ideal" is "monogamy", as described in AN 4.55.

However, it seems obvious more than one wife was also a norm & not forbidden, such as described in SN 55.7.
‘If someone were to have sexual relations with my wives, I wouldn’t like it.

‘yo kho me dāresu cārittaṃ āpajjeyya, na metaṃ assa piyaṃ manāpaṃ

SN 55.7
Kind regards

:smile:

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 7:18 am
by Sam Vara
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:35 am
I was wondering: non-monogamous relationship forms like polyamory are increasingly common and personally I think love shared is love multiplied.
My view is that dispassionate love certainly is love multiplied, but that shared sexual relationships are trouble and grief multiplied.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:01 am
by Aloka
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:35 am
non-monogamous relationship forms like polyamory are increasingly common and personally I think love shared is love multiplied.
Are they? I live in a city and I've not yet known anyone of any age in a relationship like that. Sounds more like sexual lust multiplied .. and way too complicated .

:shrug:


.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:54 am
by Ytrog
Aloka wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:01 am
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:35 am
non-monogamous relationship forms like polyamory are increasingly common and personally I think love shared is love multiplied.
Are they? I live in a city and I've not yet known anyone of any age in a relationship like that. Sounds more like sexual lust multiplied .. and way too complicated .

:shrug:


.
I see it quite often actually 🤔

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 12:13 pm
by Akashad
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:54 am
Aloka wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:01 am
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:35 am
non-monogamous relationship forms like polyamory are increasingly common and personally I think love shared is love multiplied.
Are they? I live in a city and I've not yet known anyone of any age in a relationship like that. Sounds more like sexual lust multiplied .. and way too complicated .

:shrug:


.
I see it quite often actually 🤔
I don't see that at all 🤔 (only on tv).
Live in a big city.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 2:20 pm
by Ytrog
Akashad wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 12:13 pm
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:54 am
Aloka wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:01 am


Are they? I live in a city and I've not yet known anyone of any age in a relationship like that. Sounds more like sexual lust multiplied .. and way too complicated .

:shrug:


.
I see it quite often actually 🤔
I don't see that at all 🤔 (only on tv).
Live in a big city.
I live in The Netherlands. That might have something to do with it 😜

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:24 pm
by Virgo
Ytrog wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:35 am
I was wondering: non-monogamous relationship forms like polyamory are increasingly common and personally I think love shared is love multiplied. I wonder however if this is against the Dhamma or if it is compatible?

See also: https://www.morethantwo.com/
That may be true but it is also desire multiplied. Monks, obviously, practice strict celibacy. Laity can also practice celibacy. Failing that they should aim to be in a long-term relationship. Lay-people should be one or the other. It is better if lay people do not remain single and sleep around. We should not be peregrine. We should either be committed to a long-term relationship with a single partner (or looking to be) or become a lay celibate.

We should also go and practice intensive meditation when we have a chance, ideally.

Kevin

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:58 pm
by budo
There are few people in the canon who give up their multiple wives to become celibate in order to attain jhanas.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:22 pm
by dharmacorps
The ideal in the Suttas does seem to be monogamy. The Buddha praised monogamy and loyalty to a partner.

I live in an area where polyamory is common. My observation is it leads to more suffering and dissatisfaction than monogamy. I have also observed that it is particularly negative for the women involved in it, although all suffer. I have seen a lot of men use "polyamory" as an excuse to use women. It is particularly pernicious because it is represented as a "progressive" approach to relationships but it doesn't end up that way at all.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:20 pm
by DooDoot
budo wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:58 pm
There are few people in the canon who give up their multiple wives to become celibate in order to attain jhanas.
Really? Any statistical evidence for this? Also, the Holy Life is not lived for jhana. In MN 82, Ratthapala leaves multiple wives. I once read one of the famous disciples had three wives and said to them: "You can either find another husband or join me as a nun". Two wives found other husbands & one wife became a bhikkhuni. However, I cannot recall who this story applied to.
MN 82 wrote:Then, clasping each of his feet, Ven. Ratthapala's former wives said to him, "What are they like, dear master-son: those nymphs for whose sake you lead the holy life?"

"Sisters, we don't lead the holy life for the sake of nymphs."

"'Sisters' he calls us!" And they fell down right there in a faint.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 2:59 pm
by salayatananirodha
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.087.than.html wrote:Then Queen Mallika went to King Pasenadi Kosala and on arrival said to him, "What do you think, great king: Is Princess Vajiri dear to you?"

"Yes, Mallika, Princess Vajiri is dear to me."

"And what do you think: would sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair arise in you from any change & aberration in Princess Vajiri?"

"Mallika, any change & aberration in Princess Vajiri would mean an aberration of my very life. How could sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair not arise in me?"

"Great king, it was in connection with this that the Blessed One — the One who knows, the One who sees, worthy, & rightly self-awakened — said, 'Sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair are born from one who is dear, come springing from one who is dear.'

"Now what do you think, great king: Is the noble Queen Vasabha dear to you?... Is [your son] General Vidudabha dear to you?... Am I dear to you?"

"Yes, Mallika, you are dear to me."

"And what do you think: would sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair arise in you from any change & aberration in me?"

"Mallika, any change & aberration in you would mean an aberration of my very life. How could sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair not arise in me?"

"Great king, it was in connection with this that the Blessed One — the One who knows, the One who sees, worthy, & rightly self-awakened — said, 'Sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair are born from one who is dear, come springing from one who is dear.'

"Now what do you think, great king: Are [your subjects] the Kasis & Kosalans dear to you?"

"Yes, Mallika, the Kasis & Kosalans are dear to me. It is through the might of the Kasis & Kosalans that we use Kasi sandalwood and wear garlands, scents, & ointments."

"And what do you think: would sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair arise in you from any change & aberration in the Kasis & Kosalans?"

"Mallika, any change & aberration in the Kasis & Kosalans would mean an aberration of my very life. How could sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair not arise in me?"

"Great king, it was in connection with this that the Blessed One — the One who knows, the One who sees, worthy, & rightly self-awakened — said, 'Sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair are born from one who is dear, come springing from one who is dear.'"

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 3:07 pm
by salayatananirodha
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an03/an03.034.than.html wrote:Suppose a householder or householder's son has a house with a gabled roof, plastered inside & out, draft-free, with close-fitting door & windows shut against the wind. Inside he has a horse-hair couch spread with a long-fleeced coverlet, a white wool coverlet, an embroidered coverlet, a rug of kadali-deer hide, with a canopy above, & red cushions on either side. And there a lamp would be burning, and his four wives, with their many charms, would be attending to him. Would he sleep in ease, or not? Or how does this strike you?"

"Yes, lord, he would sleep in ease. Of those in the world who sleep in ease, he would be one."

"But what do you think, young man. Might there arise in that householder or householder's son any bodily fevers or fevers of mind born of passion so that — burned with those passion-born fevers — he would sleep miserably?"

"Yes, lord."

"As for those passion-born fevers — burned with which the householder or householder's son would sleep miserably — that passion has been abandoned by the Tathagata, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. Therefore he sleeps in ease.

"Now, what do you think, young man. Might there arise in that householder or householder's son any bodily fevers or fevers of mind born of aversion so that — burned with those aversion-born fevers — he would sleep miserably?"

"Yes, lord."

"As for those aversion-born fevers — burned with which the householder or householder's son would sleep miserably — that aversion has been abandoned by the Tathagata, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. Therefore he sleeps in ease.

"Now, what do you think, young man. Might there arise in that householder or householder's son any bodily fevers or fevers of mind born of delusion so that — burned with those delusion-born fevers — he would sleep miserably?"

"Yes, lord."

"As for those delusion-born fevers — burned with which the householder or householder's son would sleep miserably — that delusion has been abandoned by the Tathagata, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. Therefore he sleeps in ease.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Oct 15, 2019 3:12 pm
by polo
dharmacorps wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:22 pm
The ideal in the Suttas does seem to be monogamy. The Buddha praised monogamy and loyalty to a partner.

I live in an area where polyamory is common. My observation is it leads to more suffering and dissatisfaction than monogamy. I have also observed that it is particularly negative for the women involved in it, although all suffer. I have seen a lot of men use "polyamory" as an excuse to use women. It is particularly pernicious because it is represented as a "progressive" approach to relationships but it doesn't end up that way at all.
Where is this country that you are living where there is so much sex? Men are greedy they just want more women and they are enjoying sex with different women which is an illusion that they are not aware of.
Sex without real love will not last. Even with real love it doesn't last that long. Everything rises and pass away.

Re: Is Buddhism strictly monogamous?

Posted: Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:04 pm
by dharmacorps
polo wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 3:12 pm

Where is this country that you are living where there is so much sex? Men are greedy they just want more women and they are enjoying sex with different women which is an illusion that they are not aware of.
Sex without real love will not last. Even with real love it doesn't last that long. Everything rises and pass away.
I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. It seems pretty upside-down sometimes here.