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Karmic view of war

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Karmic view of war
Answer
11/30/13 12:01 AM
Hi all,

Long time reader of Daniel Ingram's books, first time poster.

We just finished watching Zero Dark Thirty, and I've been thinking about war. It seems easy to say that the hatefulness and arrogance of the US breeds further hatred and that that the dehumanization of opponents is a disavowal of truth that leads to more pain.

However, it also seems clear that in come cases it is justifiable to kill someone (for example, I would fully support the murder of Hitler before the holocaust.) Without getting into specifics about how such a case could be decided, I'm curious what a karmic and Buddhist-informed view of these things is.

Also, I wonder if the Buddhist wisdom tradition has anything like a prescription for getting from here to there -- it seems clear that love is the solution to international conflict, but in what way could it ever be applied to affect problems of such a large scale? I suppose if we could get every single American in a fully loving state, we could approach the rest of the world and convey that to them...but absent that possibility, is there another way state governments could be approaching these problems other than with their current, extremely dual models?

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
11/30/13 2:29 AM as a reply to Michael Jared Morgenstern.
You think you want to prevent other people suffering, but really what you want is to end your own potential for suffering.

The only reason why the world's strife is a problem is because it makes you feel bad. If it didn't make you feel bad, then all the murder, torture, warfare and abuse would not be a problem.

To end suffering, we are told to stop holding opinions about things. Apparently the world is exactly as it should be. If you struggle internally against that idea, then that's the old ego preventing you from knowing your true self. Struggle is the ego at play. Wanting things to be better or different is the ego at play.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
11/30/13 6:08 AM as a reply to This Good Self.
C C C:
You think you want to prevent other people suffering, but really what you want is to end your own potential for suffering.

The only reason why the world's strife is a problem is because it makes you feel bad. If it didn't make you feel bad, then all the murder, torture, warfare and abuse would not be a problem.

To end suffering, we are told to stop holding opinions about things. Apparently the world is exactly as it should be. If you struggle internally against that idea, then that's the old ego preventing you from knowing your true self. Struggle is the ego at play. Wanting things to be better or different is the ego at play.
leggo ma eggo Dr. Seus 2 CCC

no point looking back
cuz
blood is all she wrote
no point lookin forward
to any other note
I'm all green down on the green
yellow to the core
nothing much in sky to see

never catch up anyway
brand new stars shining down every other day
saw the supernovas getting closer couple years now back
soon be hitting any movers picking up the slack
drives old Zeus to blue and green half crazy spinning like a top
if you think its shaking now on this little rock

still
tripleplayinallknightlong moondancin

Thunk it Thru again CCC
Thunk again a little more

Eye
Tries again to set it free
Tries again a little more
I see the reflector
I see the objector
See the time and space and more
See in to it ever day
One eye looking either way
It's difficult to snore
Head out to the door
Eye
Seed the flowers on the floor
I am is the acceptor
Thus is what a flower's for

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
11/30/13 9:42 AM as a reply to Michael Jared Morgenstern.
Michael Jared Morgenstern:
However, it also seems clear that in come cases it is justifiable to kill someone (for example, I would fully support the murder of Hitler before the holocaust.)


Yes "Help Ever, Hurt Never". emoticon If I help Hitler then I'm hurting people and if I hurt Hitler I'm helping people. LOL!

I think as long as people are addicted to power and control there will be conflict. Just pursuing something in front of other people is enough for people to think it's valuable simply because you pursue it. "If so and so wants it then I should want it too". Getting a promotion causes envy in others who don't get it. Envy even exists between family members. Only when people look at status as not that important will fighting die off. Because hunger and desire is built into people I would give up following some belief that this will change any time soon because any organization that tries to do that will have politics built in that very organization and will involve the same pursuit of status (communism for example?)

Having systems where the best of competition is allowed to flourish but with societal controls (democracy/constitutions/rule of law) to prevent that from getting out of control is a more realistic than Buddhism. Unless you can get a much higher rate of stream-entry in the public it will fail spectacularly.

Secondly, just sitting around and enjoying the moment or staring at a tree is not going to be many people's cup of tea. They will want to play sports/adventure/create etc and these will often involve some kind of passion in order to create. Trying to stop this is futile (and not what most of us want) yet Buddhism is all about eradicating passion completely. You would have to divorce religion from brain science in order to get people who are atheist materialists to even look at your opinion. Then you would want to have a system that allows some passion to be retained so there's balance instead of no passion or, so much passion they are neurotic and addicted.

If we get more and more democracies to replace dictatorships that will be a huge improvement in reducing war. After that it would be more detailed work to reduce what war is left down and down further. When I'm saying this I'm talking about obvious crime and curing criminal brains which we're still in the dark ages in dealing with.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
11/30/13 9:55 AM as a reply to Richard Zen.
Thanks all,

Interesting thoughts, and to me this gets to the heart of a contradiction in Buddhism, which is that of action/acceptance. It's not possible to create a doctrine that isn't prescriptive in some way, and any description of the path is often highly prescriptive, morality even more so. But then there is the idea of acceptance. I'm told that, looked through a certain lens, this is not a contradiction, but I'm not there yet.

I'm also curious about the Buddhist perspective on somebody who breaks morality in the short term (kills someone) for a positive benefit in the long term (averting genocide, for example.) Of course, everyone thinks they are doing someone some good with their actions, but Buddhism has a concept of people who better understand reality and therefore might have more "justification" to do such a thing.

I suppose my first stab at an answer would be that morality in Buddhism exists to remind everyone that, no matter how enlightened they believe themselves to be, they are never so enlightened that they can know that killing is justified? Or is that a misreading?

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
11/30/13 10:29 AM as a reply to Michael Jared Morgenstern.
It's hard because even Buddhists could resort to violence in the past (Thailand, Myanmar, Sri Lanka). In the heat of the moment you will find justification for your survival and the survival of your people you love. There will be accidents and misunderstandings so trying to avoid situations where that moment will occur and being vigilant is all one can do. The rest is up to court systems/police/conventional morality to make it even better. As you pointed out sometimes it will be war.

Buddhism virtually disappeared in India and flourished more elsewhere. Hindus looked at Buddhists with their monkish lifestyles and simply said that praying to Buddha is praying to Vishnu and so co-opted Buddhism. Buddhism will always be co-opted because most people just want some equanimity and self-discipline. They don't want to abandon families. Once they have enough equanimity they can get on with their lives. Living in a commune is not a paradise and the politics involved there will always disenchant people.

To me the future of Buddhism is including scientific observation. In the end there will be many agreements between different religions (as long as there is scientific observation) because morality tends to be similar in different cultures. The variances will then be harmless differences that add comparative specialities that society needs.

If you live in a Democracy you already have a lot of what you need to pursue healthy desires and life objectives in peace. The rest is up to the individual which often has to be a reminder for people who cling painfully to a future orientation that ends up looking like some Star Trek Utopia. Enjoy what you have with the understanding of the three characteristics and pursue major values.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/1/13 9:32 PM as a reply to triple think.
triple think:
C C C:
You think you want to prevent other people suffering, but really what you want is to end your own potential for suffering.

The only reason why the world's strife is a problem is because it makes you feel bad. If it didn't make you feel bad, then all the murder, torture, warfare and abuse would not be a problem.

To end suffering, we are told to stop holding opinions about things. Apparently the world is exactly as it should be. If you struggle internally against that idea, then that's the old ego preventing you from knowing your true self. Struggle is the ego at play. Wanting things to be better or different is the ego at play.
leggo ma eggo Dr. Seus 2 CCC

no point looking back
cuz
blood is all she wrote
no point lookin forward
to any other note
I'm all green down on the green
yellow to the core
nothing much in sky to see

never catch up anyway
brand new stars shining down every other day
saw the supernovas getting closer couple years now back
soon be hitting any movers picking up the slack
drives old Zeus to blue and green half crazy spinning like a top
if you think its shaking now on this little rock

still
tripleplayinallknightlong moondancin

Thunk it Thru again CCC
Thunk again a little more

Eye
Tries again to set it free
Tries again a little more
I see the reflector
I see the objector
See the time and space and more
See in to it ever day
One eye looking either way
It's difficult to snore
Head out to the door
Eye
Seed the flowers on the floor
I am is the acceptor
Thus is what a flower's for


If all the animals on the equator were capable of flattery, then Thanksgiving and Hallowe'en would fall on the same date.

Cryptic messages can be fun but only when the other person is in on the joke. Otherwise it's a form of narcissism, don't you think?

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/4/13 11:46 PM as a reply to This Good Self.
C C C:
triple think:
C C C:
You think you want to prevent other people suffering, but really what you want is to end your own potential for suffering.

The only reason why the world's strife is a problem is because it makes you feel bad. If it didn't make you feel bad, then all the murder, torture, warfare and abuse would not be a problem.

To end suffering, we are told to stop holding opinions about things. Apparently the world is exactly as it should be. If you struggle internally against that idea, then that's the old ego preventing you from knowing your true self. Struggle is the ego at play. Wanting things to be better or different is the ego at play.


Thunk it Thru again CCC
Thunk again a little more

Eye
Tries again to set it free
Tries again a little more
I see the reflector
I see the objector
See the time and space and more
See in to it ever day
One eye looking either way
It's difficult to snore
Head out to the door
Eye
Seed the flowers on the floor
I am is the acceptor
Thus is what a flower's for


If all the animals on the equator were capable of flattery, then Thanksgiving and Hallowe'en would fall on the same date.

Cryptic messages can be fun but only when the other person is in on the joke. Otherwise it's a form of narcissism, don't you think?
hi CCC

If it makes you think/feel in any way that you or I am bettered or improved to think my shitty poetry is narcissistic, by all means go ahead and proclaim it bloody crap CCC. It sounds like a fair assessment.

Here is your "assisted punchline" for the "visually impaired" then:

This seems like the place to tell 'the story of the tiger' in my signature.

There is nowhere else for these last of the Thai tigers to go besides the butchers outside the gate.

The monks at the Wat where I am in this picture have taken in a host of displaced wildlife in southern Thailand.

The big cats live with the monastics and were found as orphaned cubs.

Villagers come upon the cubs mewing at the skinned carcases of the mother cats and take them to the Wat. The skins are a valuable black market commodity and bring a high price. Large tigers don't last long in the wild given the prices these skins fetch.

The monks do their work with the wildlife in these same ways with orphans of many species at the same time. The monks and volunteers radiate BrahmaViharas in and around the cubs and adult cats 24/7 to heal them of their traumas. They all sleep with the cats and live near to them all of the time. The monastics and volunteers are always covered in cat scent, cat piss and cat scat. They sleep and walk with the cats near to them day and night. Everywhere the scent of cat in the heat is intense. It is a tiger hothouse with a concentrated amonia-like sticky and pungent scent.

Every day the ( two dozen or so at that time ) cats get about 20 pounds of raw meat at around 11 a.m.. After the cats are well fed and the noon day sun beats down ( when I was there about 42 C ) with its full heat, the cats sleep for a couple hours. At this point the traveling curious are allowed to visit for a few hours.

After the tourists have had a chance to pet and hug the cats for a while; any visitors, the cats, the monks and the volunteers go for a walk together among the herds of water buffalo, deer and other wildlife also living at the Wat.

The volunteers understand, as the monks do, that if a cat should become upset or violent, what they will do is step in between the cat(s) and any visitor and let the cat maul them instead.

This is what Samsara is like now in this world.

I, my father, my friends, anyone like us understands that all we can do is stand in between murders on one side and murderers on the other side and be destroyed.

We all think/feel that there are better places than this world to be and become in.

Any one of us would rather die than harm another and we would rather die than have another harm any other.

This is our understanding and this is our practice, knee deep in shit, piss and blood, this is our world today.

We do not think it is difficult to see this about our world, it seems obvious to us
We do not think it is funny and we do not make fun of it.
Sorry again for my bloody, pissy, shitty poetry.

Please, take care, not to step in my shit, piss and blood when my day to become meat and skin also arrives.

-triplethink

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 12:21 PM as a reply to triple think.
Thank you for the story triple think.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 4:58 PM as a reply to Drew Miller.
Drew Miller:
Thank you for the story triple think.
no problem Drew, glad you saw the light. War is Hell.
Just pissing on my campfire until the steam went out. : ;
four eyes go out like a light on that question.
eye keep at least one eye on it at all times
best of luck with all the bs/,
?/
.>=++>3Bird>

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 7:20 PM as a reply to triple think.
I didn't say it was crap, I just didn't understand it. But then again I think that's the idea isn't it - that no one really should be able to understand it? To create an air of mystery around you than no one can penetrate?

If I start typing in Windings every now and then, people might think "hmmm, mystery man... how intriguing! How wonderful!". &%$&**(::+_+

When I read the words of enlightened people, they don't seem at all fussed about the horrible state of the World... the blood the piss and shit as you call it. Of course I am fussed, but I'm not enlightened. I already know Life's a goddamned bitch, from the unenlightened perspective. The Masters say the World is exactly as it should be, with all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. There's no suffering. War is the equivalent of a child's birthday party.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 7:56 PM as a reply to This Good Self.
C C C:
I didn't say it was crap, I just didn't understand it. But then again I think that's the idea isn't it - \! How wonderful!". &%$&**(::+_+

When I read the words of enlightened people, they don't seem at all fussed about the horrible state of the World... the blood the piss and shit as you call it. Of course I am fussed, but I'm not enlightened. I already know Life's a goddamned bitch, from the unenlightened perspective.



The Masters say the World is exactly as it should be, with all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. There's no suffering. War is the equivalent of a child's birthday party.
There's no suffering. = Masters of the World = you + all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. = They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. ? Masters All? say war =childs birthday party,,,,,,,,!FU@U2
.
.
,
This U=v?\|V._____________//?U.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 8:06 PM as a reply to triple think.
triple think:
C C C:
I didn't say it was crap, I just didn't understand it. But then again I think that's the idea isn't it - \! How wonderful!". &%$&**(::+_+

When I read the words of enlightened people, they don't seem at all fussed about the horrible state of the World... the blood the piss and shit as you call it. Of course I am fussed, but I'm not enlightened. I already know Life's a goddamned bitch, from the unenlightened perspective.



The Masters say the World is exactly as it should be, with all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. There's no suffering. War is the equivalent of a child's birthday party.
There's no suffering. = Masters of the World = you + all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. = They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. ? Masters All? say war =childs birthday party,,,,,,,,!FU@U2
.
.
,
This U=v?\|V._____________//?U.


You think I'm attacking you, but there's no ill will here. You're ok as you are triplethink. There's nothing wrong with you. Look after yourself. Take care of your basic needs and desires and practise meditation when it feels right... and I'll do the same. Sorry to hand out advice, but I felt like you were in a bad place.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 8:11 PM as a reply to This Good Self.
C C C:
triple think:
C C C:
I didn't say it was crap, I just didn't understand it. But then again I think that's the idea isn't it - \! How wonderful!". &%$&**(::+_+

When I read the words of enlightened people, they don't seem at all fussed about the horrible state of the World... the blood the piss and shit as you call it. Of course I am fussed, but I'm not enlightened. I already know Life's a goddamned bitch, from the unenlightened perspective.



The Masters say the World is exactly as it should be, with all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. There's no suffering. War is the equivalent of a child's birthday party.
There's no suffering. = Masters of the World = you + all it's destruction, abuse, and pain and torture. = They don't care if a tiger dies or even if the whole species becomes extinct. ? Masters All? say war =childs birthday party,,,,,,,,!FU@U2
.
.
,
This U=v?\|V._____________//?U.


You think I'm attacking you, but there's no ill will here. You're ok as you are triplethink. There's nothing wrong with you. Look after yourself. Take care of your basic needs and desires and practise meditation when it feels right... and I'll do the same. Sorry to hand out advice, but I felt like you were in a bad place.

.
.
.


"Wish You Were Here" .triplethinkU/\ /\ CCCU.

>/0\<

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 8:12 PM as a reply to Richard Zen.
Michael Jared Morgenstern:
to me this gets to the heart of a contradiction in Buddhism, which is that of action/acceptance. It's not possible to create a doctrine that isn't prescriptive in some way, and any description of the path is often highly prescriptive, morality even more so. But then there is the idea of acceptance. I'm told that, looked through a certain lens, this is not a contradiction, but I'm not there yet.


Definitely one thing that's hard about Buddhism is that it is a path towards a state which cannot be encompassed with words. From the standpoint of enlightenment, this moment right now is the only moment. Every minute thing which happens cannot be separated from the overall situation around it, and cannot be truly and completely judged on the basis of conceptions based on occurrences in the past. Thus one cannot say definitively what should and should not be done; all action is situational.

Thus, on the relative (conceptual) level we have teachings on morality, which are good as general guidelines. However, on the ultimate level, in which each situation is unique and must be uniquely judged and responded to, it is more wise to act based on situational understanding than general guidelines for good conduct. The idea of acceptance is not of passiveness, it is accepting the truth of the situation, not continually striving to mentally impose a conception of how one wishes the situation to be.

Michael Jared Morgenstern:
I'm also curious about the Buddhist perspective on somebody who breaks morality in the short term (kills someone) for a positive benefit in the long term (averting genocide, for example.) Of course, everyone thinks they are doing someone some good with their actions, but Buddhism has a concept of people who better understand reality and therefore might have more "justification" to do such a thing.


I have heard the example fairly commonly when it comes to relative and ultimate truth, and morality of that which you have suggested above: in general killing is bad, but it may be acceptable in certain situations. emoticon

Those people who 'understand reality' understand the non-separateness of all things and are not bound by conceptual confusion. They know the true nature of all things, in that they are one; they do not literally know everything though. Their actions are unclouded by confused dualistic perception, but still they are acting on a human basis. Enlightenment doesn't make you super-human, it simply makes you aware of what you truly are. You do not gain anything you didn't already have.

Richard Zen:

Secondly, just sitting around and enjoying the moment or staring at a tree is not going to be many people's cup of tea. They will want to play sports/adventure/create etc and these will often involve some kind of passion in order to create. Trying to stop this is futile (and not what most of us want) yet Buddhism is all about eradicating passion completely. You would have to divorce religion from brain science in order to get people who are atheist materialists to even look at your opinion. Then you would want to have a system that allows some passion to be retained so there's balance instead of no passion or, so much passion they are neurotic and addicted.


Buddhism is not about eliminating passion, it is about eliminating dualistic confusion. Do not think it is possible to eliminate the sting of life. Do you think enlightened people are numb?! They may have open their hearts to a great degree, but in existence everyone learns lessons. Enlightenment is not the end state, it is simple recognition of the wholeness of all things, of the truth of the matter.

I too would be bored staring at a tree all day. You cannot conceive of the enlightened state! How many times must this be said?!! Do you think we have a choice how much passion we eliminate? All or nothing baby! All people must shed their delusions on the path, taking none with them. You must die to be reborn.

You cannot chose how you progress, you must drop your delusion and accept that one truth which will never go away.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 9:53 PM as a reply to T DC.
T DC:
Richard Zen:
Secondly, just sitting around and enjoying the moment or staring at a tree is not going to be many people's cup of tea. They will want to play sports/adventure/create etc and these will often involve some kind of passion in order to create. Trying to stop this is futile (and not what most of us want) yet Buddhism is all about eradicating passion completely. You would have to divorce religion from brain science in order to get people who are atheist materialists to even look at your opinion. Then you would want to have a system that allows some passion to be retained so there's balance instead of no passion or, so much passion they are neurotic and addicted.


Buddhism is not about eliminating passion, it is about eliminating dualistic confusion. Do not think it is possible to eliminate the sting of life. Do you think enlightened people are numb?! They may have open their hearts to a great degree, but in existence everyone learns lessons. Enlightenment is not the end state, it is simple recognition of the wholeness of all things, of the truth of the matter.

I too would be bored staring at a tree all day. You cannot conceive of the enlightened state! How many times must this be said?!! Do you think we have a choice how much passion we eliminate? All or nothing baby! All people must shed their delusions on the path, taking none with them. You must die to be reborn.

You cannot chose how you progress, you must drop your delusion and accept that one truth which will never go away.


Uh what?

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/5/13 11:02 PM as a reply to Richard Zen.
Richard Zen:
T DC:


Buddhism is not about eliminating passion, it is about eliminating dualistic confusion. Do not think it is possible to eliminate the sting of life. Do you think enlightened people are numb?! They may have open their hearts to a great degree, but in existence everyone learns lessons. Enlightenment is not the end state, it is simple recognition of the wholeness of all things, of the truth of the matter.

I too would be bored staring at a tree all day. You cannot conceive of the enlightened state! How many times must this be said?!! Do you think we have a choice how much passion we eliminate? All or nothing baby! All people must shed their delusions on the path, taking none with them. You must die to be reborn.

You cannot chose how you progress, you must drop your delusion and accept that one truth which will never go away.


Uh what?


Alright, so here's more explanation for the statements in blue:

1. Buddhism is not about eliminating passion. It sounds to me like you are taking the Theravada approach in which one seeks to destroy emotional afflictions. Is this the case? Frankly I do not think the purpose of Buddhism is to eliminate the passions. As I said above, the purpose of the path is to eliminate dualistic confusion, and in my experience this is all one can hope to do on the path. If any passions are eliminated as a result of that, than so be it, but I do not think elimination of passions is an accurate way to describe the mental changes that result from attainment. Which dovetails nicely with the second blue bit..

2a. We do not have a choice in how much passion we eliminate. You proposed above that in order to have a well functioning society we need eliminate some passion, but not too much because that might be a bad thing (paraphrasing). How exactly do we decide how much passion is good? And more importantly how do we go about eliminating this passion until only the desired amount remains? The way we make mental changes on the path is to progress in attainments; which can be translated as the eradication of dualistic confusion, or our ability to perceive emptiness/the truth of reality. Attainments simply are what they are. We do not create them. We do not think, 'oh, I'd like to have an attainment where I perceive this much emptiness'. The attainments are steps on the path to enlightenment, and like enlightenment, they simply are what they are; they are not unique person to person for they are the recognition of universal truth. Thus..

2b. All or nothing baby! We cannot chose to have some passion and leave some behind. We cannot chose to have some confusion and leave some behind. If you want to drop your confusion you have to take ALL of your cloths off and walk into the fire, you have to give up EVERYTHING. There is no holding on. Enlightenment is completely letting go of all your conceptions, all your preconceived notions, letting go completely so that you see only that which remains when there is nothing left of your false conceptual clinging. As Ajahn Chah said, "If you let go a little, you will have a little peace, if you let go completely you will have complete peace." If you only let go of some of your passions, you still have farther to go. It's ridiculous to think the optimal state is somewhere halfway down the path. Obviously the point of mediation and Buddhism is enlightenment and so obviously it is better to be fully rather than half enlightened!

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/6/13 11:54 AM as a reply to Michael Jared Morgenstern.
Another Lion Rests this Day on African Soil.

All others bow before him.

All Phoenix scan the horizon for new light, all Dragon bend wing.

Others weep, pray, morn and make ready the victory celebration.

A conqueror lies still.


Sleep like a Rock Great Sir, rest easy, rest for the age, a great work done.

Let us, let others finish this work, finish this, the bitter sweet cup.

- A man.

______________________________________________

"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself.

A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." - D. H. Lawrence

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/6/13 9:26 PM as a reply to T DC.
The problem is 2b is contradicting 1. If you assume 2b is only letting go of what is bad then it would work. Could an Arhat daydream about a painting they want to create and then have a huge desire to paint it and finish it? If he/she could then it doesn't eliminate all passions. Then I would be down for it.

If it's...

Kenneth Foik 9 stages of enlightenment

Lots of disorientation. At times some sense of “divine retardation,” in which practitioner feels him or herself losing interest in some things that mattered previously, while simultaneously feeling profoundly OK with these changes.


I could see many people wanting this but I equally could see that many would not and they still could be full functioning moral human beings.

What I want is passionate creativity for positive things on the one hand without the pride/self-referencing bullshit that gets in the way on the other hand.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/6/13 10:25 PM as a reply to Richard Zen.
Richard Zen:


I see what you mean about the contradiction. I guess what I meant was; one can still feel passionate after enlightenment, and also that in the sense of giving things up, everything must go. If you feel passion to be a good quality in yourself, then by all means don't try to quash it, but of course you must let go of clinging to it. Enlightenment isn't the eradication of any personality, it is essentially the elimination of self-referencing as you said above.

The thing about people wanting it or not it tricky. What we are talking about (passionless) could be looked at as an external characteristic, enlightened people seem not to feel passion. One cannot hope to attain enlightenment if their basis is to be like the appearance of the master, if their striving is based on becoming how they imagine the master to be, or feel. Genuine striving for enlightenment has to do with clear internal suffering as a result of false-self sort of confusion, not materialistic searching.

That quote by Kenneth Folk about divine retardation is interesting, at times I have felt annoyed with my lack of drive to change things, as a result of knowing there is nothing to change. Whether or not people think they would prefer this or not, is somewhat beside the point. The state I am in is the eradication of all dualistic confusion, and thus the eradication of suffering. I believe this state must and will be reached by all people on earth at some point before they can move on in their endless cosmic spiritual journey. And at any rate it's not bad. Whether or not I feel the urge to create paintings, I can do what I please now with the knowledge that I am not changed at all fundamentally by any and all external circumstances.

So yes by all means external pursuits matter less now. But what is the goal of external pursuits? Satisfaction? The enlightened state is one of constant satisfaction.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/7/13 11:16 AM as a reply to T DC.
T DC:
Richard Zen:


I see what you mean about the contradiction. I guess what I meant was; one can still feel passionate after enlightenment, and also that in the sense of giving things up, everything must go. If you feel passion to be a good quality in yourself, then by all means don't try to quash it, but of course you must let go of clinging to it. Enlightenment isn't the eradication of any personality, it is essentially the elimination of self-referencing as you said above.

The thing about people wanting it or not it tricky. What we are talking about (passionless) could be looked at as an external characteristic, enlightened people seem not to feel passion. One cannot hope to attain enlightenment if their basis is to be like the appearance of the master, if their striving is based on becoming how they imagine the master to be, or feel. Genuine striving for enlightenment has to do with clear internal suffering as a result of false-self sort of confusion, not materialistic searching.

That quote by Kenneth Folk about divine retardation is interesting, at times I have felt annoyed with my lack of drive to change things, as a result of knowing there is nothing to change. Whether or not people think they would prefer this or not, is somewhat beside the point. The state I am in is the eradication of all dualistic confusion, and thus the eradication of suffering. I believe this state must and will be reached by all people on earth at some point before they can move on in their endless cosmic spiritual journey. And at any rate it's not bad. Whether or not I feel the urge to create paintings, I can do what I please now with the knowledge that I am not changed at all fundamentally by any and all external circumstances.

So yes by all means external pursuits matter less now. But what is the goal of external pursuits? Satisfaction? The enlightened state is one of constant satisfaction.


Don't ignore that want to change things. That's existential angst over missed opportunities and a call to responsibility. I never want to lose that. It doesn't mean you have to ruminate obsessively over missed opportunity because then that would paralyse you and letting go would be appropriate. It doesn't mean you have to change things that are out of your power. Focus on what's in your power. There's this element of Carpe Diem (Seize the day) that is true. Just because conventional goals are impermanent and don't satisfy completely doesn't mean you can't alter the way you go about it. Life is nothing but conventional goals and rewards, otherwise you would be sitting around waiting to die.

Using mindfulness and concentration to get things done that are responsible and worthy of your time will give your brain rewards. Because you have the advantage to see that interest and rewards are just only that and not a self there's no danger that you will be fooled by it. Enjoying good results from completing tasks doesn't have to lead to massive self-referencing like it does for ego-maniacs. When I wash the floor I enjoy the smell and the results of a clean floor. It doesn't have to be more complicated than that. I don't have to uproot the floor and replace it with better and better materials and add heated floors, etc.

The problem with addiction is that when you start it can be hard to stop but for people who have meditated for long period of time and have had their amygdala shrink in size what's the worry to enjoy something when appropriate and then let go of it. I drink good beer and wine sometimes but I don't find it hard to stop. emoticon I watch less movies, TV, and enjoy less music but I don't stop it completely. Depression is only seeing the bad and ignoring the good. That's what Shinzen Young described as way to get people away from depression when emptiness in practice scares them into negative mind states and nihilism.

When I felt I needed to develop motivation (because it was too low) I started just thinking about the benefits of getting things done and that little bit of dopamine felt healthy. There were a few moments of awkwardness until my brain started giving healthy rewards to completing tasks and now I've regained what was good in the first place but used disenchantment to prevent addictiveness and to seek out aversion on purpose so I can melt it with mindfulness. I'm having so much more fun now and feel normally sane.

Going back to the Dalai Lama, it's important to perceive the good and bad in situations to see how good things can have bad elements to them and bad things can have good elements to them. By using imagination you can get desire and motivation to be interested in projects but if you add thoughts about a downside you can disenchant where needed. If the drawbacks are too large then don't do it. Addiction is simply looking at the benefits and never looking at the drawbacks. Once a habit of looking at both sides of a coin are developed then temptations are less of a problem. Instead of sidestepping the amygdala you can use it properly. Concentration aids the imagination process so you can explore avenues without having to act on impulse. To me that's a good example of skillful-means.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/7/13 12:18 PM as a reply to Richard Zen.
I look at it this way, even at paths 3 & 4 pre-fruition 4th path, it is still passion
after the final ''splashdown" it is aaaaaaaaaaalllllllllll.

Calm
Passion


addendum
-n///n/solution

______________________________________________________________

Narrative insights:

So, for instances;

As I have no clue ultimately where I am at,
since everything, not only 'my self', has lost it's centers,
and I am in total 'free fall',
from no-where to no-how and no-when.
then
no wonder,

it is hard to find NORTH
or IN
or OUT
or UP
or DOWN
or WHATEVER

so

I work on the anxiety/agitation vectors,

WHERE EVER
HOW EVER

there is a tremble
or a trumble
or a trumpet or a toodle doodle doo

Attend, note, consider, reflect,
maybe even attempt to act...

as Kurt Vonnegut once brilliantly penned:

"We do, doodley do, doodley do, doodely do,
What we must, muddily must, muddily must, muddily must;
Muddily do, muddily do, muddily do, muddily do,
Until we bust, bodily bust, bodily bust, bodily bust."

— Bokonon, “Cat’s Cradle”

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/8/13 9:54 PM as a reply to Richard Zen.
Richard Zen:


Don't ignore that want to change things. That's existential angst over missed opportunities and a call to responsibility. I never want to lose that. .....Life is nothing but conventional goals and rewards, otherwise you would be sitting around waiting to die.

... By using imagination you can get desire and motivation to be interested in projects but if you add thoughts about a downside you can disenchant where needed. If the drawbacks are too large then don't do it. Addiction is simply looking at the benefits and never looking at the drawbacks. Once a habit of looking at both sides of a coin are developed then temptations are less of a problem. Instead of sidestepping the amygdala you can use it properly. Concentration aids the imagination process so you can explore avenues without having to act on impulse. To me that's a good example of skillful-means.


Ok look, I appreciate it, but I don't need advice on this. In the enlightened state, conception of solutions to problems are seen as what they truly what they are; the problem itself. While perhaps the drive to accomplish seems nice from your perspective, from mine it is clearly based on dualistic and materialistic thinking; believing that a solution to your problems can be found in the world outside of yourself. If you have a problem, the problem is in your perception of it, and in your grasping at an external solution.

As for using imagination and disenchantment as needed.., I don't believe that's possible. To be honest, if you believe yourself to have that much control over your mind you're fooling yourself. The point of the path is enlightenment, freedom, not some sort of mind state seemingly well balanced between good and bad. The point is transcendence. No mental state is lasting. Your seeming ability to regulate your mind state will not last, and if it does, no doubt it will be unsatisfactory. That is the ground rule, all compounded phenomena are in-transient and unsatisfactory.

My point is, I disagree that one can simply use the mind skillfully thanks to meditation/concentration practice. Thinking you can control your mind is an illusion. What arises will arise, and then you have to deal with it; you have no control over what arises. Thus in order to 'conquer' or 'tame' the mind, you must see the false, empty, or unreal nature of all that arises, which simultaneously allows one to recognize that which is permanent and intransigent, that which one is, and that which all things are, always and without separation. It is all that ever was, is or will be. There is no lasting delusory, samsaric happiness, but that which is found beyond the conceptual delusion is always present, ever loving, and exists forever.

RE: Karmic view of war
Answer
12/9/13 8:13 AM as a reply to T DC.
Alright no prob. Good luck!