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Thread: Self-Defense

  1. #51

    Re: Self-Defense

    Hello Christopher,

    just another two novice cents that you are all free to take with a pinch of salt and ignore as you see fit.

    As far as I can tell, nobody here stated that "the finger was the moon". IMHO different positions are being exchanged regarding points that are by no means "finer points" but instead fundamental points - the topic of this thread is Self-Defense and this led to a very important meta-discussion about where we get our understanding from of what would be an appropriate "Buddhist" response to a real life dilemma.

    This discussion can help us all to question our own positions, see where they might be coming from and how we can drop them all on the cushion.

    As I mentioned earlier, everyone of us has a different cut-off point and definition-preference as to what constitutes Buddhadharma and how this flows into/interacts and informs our day to day practice.

    On a purely personal level I am all for modern day re-interpretations in many cases, but once it comes to a point where one might just as well sit like a frog or alternatively like a follower of the Advaita Vedanta path, the question arises, why one practises the Zen-Buddhist path and not another one? For some the answer is faith in particular parts of doctrine, for others meditation experiences, or aesthetics, for others again it is an underlying idea of a Philosophia Perennis to be found in different religions all doing more or less exactly the same, for others it really doesn't matter and for others they just practise because causal relationships have somehow brought them here.

    It's good to be able to see/read all these different perspectives based on individual life experience.

    Thank you all for sharing your insights.

    Gassho,

    Hans

  2. #52

    Re: Self-Defense

    Why wait for the cushion Hans?

    Have a good weekend and a Happy Mother's Day the lot of you!

  3. #53

    Re: Self-Defense

    This is getting complicated to follow what with all the quotes and all, so I just say a bare minimum (edit: which I just noticed was quite wordy!)!

    Not at all, The Sravakayana, is the path where enlightenment is restricted to those on the path to Becoming Buddhas, by way of becoming monks Stream entry through arhatship etc... Laymen are left to make merit by supporting the monks... This is how it has been historically. This is why it is called the small or lesser vehicle. Or at least this is what I have heard...
    It is called small by mahayanists who came to see hinayana teachings as lesser, because they misunderstood what hinayanists really meant. In Theravada, you can only achieve nirvana for yourself, and usually it is monks (almost exclusively, yes) who achieve nirvana. The merit-making lay follower who benefit from the teachings from the monks, could achieve rebirth as a monk, thus completing the training him- and herself. No one is thus left out, as long as you don't see this one lifetime as the only one, because then I could see your point. This path doesn't make it any lesser, or small; instead, it's an alternative route.

    I can not imagine how the differences between the schools could be taught like that, that seems so strange to me. Many of the Mahayana sutras The Lotus and Mahaperinirvana off the top of my head, seem to make it clear that the Sravakayana sutras are not to be relied upon.
    Yes they do, because of the polemical context in which they were composed. But, if you look for example at the Everyday zen website, they say: "Although the Pali Canon has been handed down by the Theravadin school of Buddhism, its texts represent teachings from the time before the Buddhist community divided into different schools, and are thus a source of the common heritage of the entire Buddhist tradition. They cover a wide range of topics, addressing both monastic and lay concerns and clarify many fundamental Buddhist doctrines including compassion, ethical conduct, the path of spiritual development and transformation, and liberation of the mind. For Everyday Zen, these texts are foundational, and we return to them again and again "

    Jundo has pointed to articles about the pali suttas, for example when we discussed the precepts (refrain from taking lives, I believe).

    My guess is therefore that the pali canon at least hold some bearing on our practice. But you are right, whenever a mahayana sutra and a pali sutta were in disagreement, we should follow the sutra. That doesn't mean that there isn't a point in studying the suttas, or that they have nothing to teach us. Many of the mahayana sutras are based on facts that can be found in the canon, such as the four truths of the noble ones, the eightfold path, dependent origination, rebirth ... I see this as definitely valid, but you are correct in that there are parts that perhaps isn't valid, such as arhatship preferred over bodhisattvahood. I'll give you that . In my previous example, in the devadatta sutta, I don't feel that this information is disagreed upon in any mahayana sutra.

    Again, because the sutra you were using is from the sravakayana, it is still not valid, however if you had gone for the next few verses after what I quoted in the Mahaperinirvana sutra, you could have totally shot me down... not that it changes my view on the original argument at all....
    You don't realize that you have already been shot down?

    (I kid!)

    Ah, so are you saying that for you ultimate reality occupies a fixed position? We should definitely start another thread for that one if you do, caus that I want to hear about...
    Well, it depends on what you mean by fixed position, of course. I believe that ultimate reality is always ultimate reality, which can be found. The ultimate reality does not change depending on your or my view. It doesn't change depending on what we think is right or wrong.

    Back to the original point, and I hope you are enjoying this as much as I am...

    It is my view, that we should not use the precepts as a measure for anyone's practice but our own.

    Do you agree or disagree? Please provide your answer from your own reason and not from a textbook.
    I neither agree nor disagree, and at the same time I both agree and disagree. No, we shouldn't judge other people's practice, but we must also not let the precepts turn into anything goes, because in that case, we would be obliged to speak out concerning that practice, which may be harmful and adharmic. In that case, we must use the precepts as a measure on another's practice. Erroneous views originating from faulty precepts could indeed be unskillful. As stated earlier, there is a difference depending on what level we are talking about: the relative or the absolute.

  4. #54
    Senior Member Heisoku's Avatar
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    Re: Self-Defense

    Just an interesting background on martial arts and Buddhism.
    http://globalmartialarts.blogspot.co...-in-india.html

    I practise Tai Chi and Aikido and I have never needed to use any of these skills, neither have any of my fellow practitioners or teachers. I guess we do not go looking for trouble and realise the ease with which harm can be done.
    The benefits are in learning to harmonise, blend, be mindful in body-mind, as well as in the exercise.

    The wisdom is to find skillful alternatives to using violence, including avoiding trisky situations, and to know you have the skills to immobilise if necessary. As the UK has fewer firearms this aspect does not enter into the mindset here, although we did have an aikido v gun session from a consultant who had worked in Iraq. He is now dealing with those experiences through non martial activities....I guess if you live by the sword you die by the sword, in the sense that 'dying' can happen emotionally and mentally.

    As the Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra says;

    No gain – thus Boddhisattvas live this Prajna Paramita
    With no hindrance of mind –
    No hindrance therefore no fear.
    Far beyond all delusion, Nirvana is already here.

    For me this says it all. Gassho to all.

  5. #55

    Re: Self-Defense

    Christopher, I agree with your last post wholeheartedly.

    Rich, It sounds like you are on the verge of Buddha-hood, just remember, the light at the end of the tunnel might just be you!

    Hans, Keep on keeping on!

    Rev R, Happy mothers day weekend to you as well.

    ANISTA,

    Quote Originally Posted by anista
    This is getting complicated to follow what with all the quotes and all, so I just say a bare minimum (edit: which I just noticed was quite wordy!)!
    Yes indeed.

    Not at all, The Sravakayana, is the path where enlightenment is restricted to those on the path to Becoming Buddhas, by way of becoming monks Stream entry through arhatship etc... Laymen are left to make merit by supporting the monks... This is how it has been historically. This is why it is called the small or lesser vehicle. Or at least this is what I have heard...
    Quote Originally Posted by anista
    It is called small by mahayanists who came to see hinayana teachings as lesser, because they misunderstood what hinayanists really meant. In Theravada, you can only achieve nirvana for yourself, and usually it is monks (almost exclusively, yes) who achieve nirvana. The merit-making lay follower who benefit from the teachings from the monks, could achieve rebirth as a monk, thus completing the training him- and herself. No one is thus left out, as long as you don't see this one lifetime as the only one, because then I could see your point. This path doesn't make it any lesser, or small; instead, it's an alternative route.
    This is not my experiance at all. The view I expressed comes from me working along side of Thais and Cambodians and is a reflection of how they expressed their view.

    I understand that academia and reality do not always agree, but I tend to favor reality.

    I can not imagine how the differences between the schools could be taught like that, that seems so strange to me. Many of the Mahayana sutras The Lotus and Mahaperinirvana off the top of my head, seem to make it clear that the Sravakayana sutras are not to be relied upon.
    Yes they do, because of the polemical context in which they were composed. But, if you look for example at the Everyday zen website, they say: "Although the Pali Canon has been handed down by the Theravadin school of Buddhism, its texts represent teachings from the time before the Buddhist community divided into different schools, and are thus a source of the common heritage of the entire Buddhist tradition. They cover a wide range of topics, addressing both monastic and lay concerns and clarify many fundamental Buddhist doctrines including compassion, ethical conduct, the path of spiritual development and transformation, and liberation of the mind. For Everyday Zen, these texts are foundational, and we return to them again and again "

    Jundo has pointed to articles about the pali suttas, for example when we discussed the precepts (refrain from taking lives, I believe).

    My guess is therefore that the pali canon at least hold some bearing on our practice. But you are right, whenever a mahayana sutra and a pali sutta were in disagreement, we should follow the sutra. That doesn't mean that there isn't a point in studying the suttas, or that they have nothing to teach us. Many of the mahayana sutras are based on facts that can be found in the canon, such as the four truths of the noble ones, the eightfold path, dependent origination, rebirth ... I see this as definitely valid, but you are correct in that there are parts that perhaps isn't valid, such as arhatship preferred over bodhisattvahood. I'll give you that . In my previous example, in the devadatta sutta, I don't feel that this information is disagreed upon in any mahayana sutra.

    Again, because the sutra you were using is from the sravakayana, it is still not valid, however if you had gone for the next few verses after what I quoted in the Mahaperinirvana sutra, you could have totally shot me down... not that it changes my view on the original argument at all....

    You don't realize that you have already been shot down?

    (I kid!)
    Clearly you have not even winged me sir!

    , so are you saying that for you ultimate reality occupies a fixed position? We should definitely start another thread for that one if you do, caus that I want to hear about...
    Well, it depends on what you mean by fixed position, of course. I believe that ultimate reality is always ultimate reality, which can be found. The ultimate reality does not change depending on your or my view. It doesn't change depending on what we think is right or wrong.

    Back to the original point, and I hope you are enjoying this as much as I am...

    It is my view, that we should not use the precepts as a measure for anyone's practice but our own.

    Do you agree or disagree? Please provide your answer from your own reason and not from a textbook.
    I neither agree nor disagree, and at the same time I both agree and disagree. No, we shouldn't judge other people's practice, but we must also not let the precepts turn into anything goes, because in that case, we would be obliged to speak out concerning that practice, which may be harmful and adharmic. In that case, we must use the precepts as a measure on another's practice. Erroneous views originating from faulty precepts could indeed be unskillful. As stated earlier, there is a difference depending on what level we are talking about: the relative or the absolute.
    I am not sure what you are saying here, you seem to want to have it both ways, and I understand where you are coming from. Believe me I could make an argument for either opinion, but mostly I think that the precepts we take as individuals today are different from rules for living in the community which are not (and this may be the key) voluntary but compulsory. Again, I see the precepts as a tool for studying the self, not for regulating a community. For regulation of the community there are other rules which get enforced through various means both by the laity and law enforcement.

    Heisoku, Indeed, I would even say “?” (for those without Sanskrit fonts loaded that is the first character of the sanskrit alphabet, it is also the “Shortest Sutra that contains the entire buddha dharma”) says it all as well.

  6. #56
    Senior Member Ekai's Avatar
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    Re: Self-Defense

    I am having trouble following the conversation like Rich since I have not studied much of the suttas or sutras either.

    I would still use self-defense to get out of a very dangerous situation. However, attackers usually prey on a woman they feel can be controlled easily without a fight. They want control and dominance so they can do want they want whether it is rape, killing or other torture. Martial arts teaches awareness, mindfulness of the environment and walking with confidence to project a strong presence to help deter attackers. There other self-defense tips that are emphasized as well but that is a long list.

    If none of these stop an attack and if I am ever faced in this type of situation, my intention would be to do enough to get me the heck out of there. And who knows what that "enough" would be? If that "enough" is simply a compliance technique or an Aikido throw, then great. If that "enough" means causing severe bodily harm to save my life, prevent a brutal rape or save a loved one's life, then I would have to reflect on my actions deeply. I definitely wouldn't be partying in the streets and/or bragging about it. But I would share the experience with other women so they can learn how to live their lives safely.

  7. #57

    Re: Self-Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by jodi_heisz
    I am having trouble following the conversation like Rich since I have not studied much of the suttas or sutras either.

    I would still use self-defense to get out of a very dangerous situation. However, attackers usually prey on a woman they feel can be controlled easily without a fight. They want control and dominance so they can do want they want whether it is rape, killing or other torture. Martial arts teaches awareness, mindfulness of the environment and walking with confidence to project a strong presence to help deter attackers. There other self-defense tips that are emphasized as well but that is a long list.

    If none of these stop an attack and if I am ever faced in this type of situation, my intention would be to do enough to get me the heck out of there. And who knows what that "enough" would be? If that "enough" is simply a compliance technique or an Aikido throw, then great. If that "enough" means causing severe bodily harm to save my life, prevent a brutal rape or save a loved one's life, then I would have to reflect on my actions deeply. I definitely wouldn't be partying in the streets and/or bragging about it. But I would share the experience with other women so they can learn how to live their lives safely.
    Jodi, I think you are doing just fine, please ignore the psudointelectual ramblings above, the only way a suta or sutra would help you out in the situation you are talking about would be as an improvised weapon.

  8. #58

    Re: Self-Defense

    From Dogen's Maka-Hannya-Haramitsu:
    Subhuti says, "Kausika! When good sons and good daughters abide in the profound prajna-paramita as thus preached, they are just guarding it. When good sons and good daughters abide in the profound prajna-paramita as thus preached, they never stray. Remember, even if all human and nonhuman beings were looking for an opportunity to harm them, in the end it would be impossible. Kausika! If you want to guard the bodhisattvas who abide in the profound praja-paramita as thus preached, it is no different from wanting to guard space.

    In Gudo's commentary he says "The right decision comes from the right state of body and mind, and the right state of body and mind comes when our body and mind are balanced and harmonized. And Zazen is the practice by which our body and mind enter the state of balance and harmony. Maha-prajna-paramita, then is the essence of Zazen."

    This prajna wisdom sounds like a pretty good deal and I have no doubt it would be helpful in a self defense situation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fuken
    Rich, It sounds like you are on the verge of Buddha-hood, just remember, the light at the end of the tunnel might just be you!

    Sorry but I'm really not into that
    And I do respect your knowledge of suttas, sutras and Buddhism.

  9. #59

    Re: Self-Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by Hans
    Hello Christopher,

    just another two novice cents that you are all free to take with a pinch of salt and ignore as you see fit.

    As far as I can tell, nobody here stated that "the finger was the moon". IMHO different positions are being exchanged regarding points that are by no means "finer points" but instead fundamental points - the topic of this thread is Self-Defense and this led to a very important meta-discussion about where we get our understanding from of what would be an appropriate "Buddhist" response to a real life dilemma.

    This discussion can help us all to question our own positions, see where they might be coming from and how we can drop them all on the cushion.

    As I mentioned earlier, everyone of us has a different cut-off point and definition-preference as to what constitutes Buddhadharma and how this flows into/interacts and informs our day to day practice.

    On a purely personal level I am all for modern day re-interpretations in many cases, but once it comes to a point where one might just as well sit like a frog or alternatively like a follower of the Advaita Vedanta path, the question arises, why one practises the Zen-Buddhist path and not another one? For some the answer is faith in particular parts of doctrine, for others meditation experiences, or aesthetics, for others again it is an underlying idea of a Philosophia Perennis to be found in different religions all doing more or less exactly the same, for others it really doesn't matter and for others they just practise because causal relationships have somehow brought them here.

    It's good to be able to see/read all these different perspectives based on individual life experience.

    Thank you all for sharing your insights.

    Gassho,

    Hans
    Guten Tag mein freund,

    I never get a chance to speak German anymore (probably forgot most of it by now). Anyway, I will admit that I have difficulty expressing what I am trying to say, so let me try again with a little help. What I have seen in this thread is a lot of discussion over suttas, sutras, and different points of doctrine. This definitely has its place in our practice, these ancient words can help us to see our Buddha nature, and are some of the sign posts our ancestors used while walking the Path. What I am saying is that they should not be used as points of practice, in that at their core, they are meant to help us to realize our self nature, not to be held up as...well....as scripture.

    I'll ask Bodhidharma to expound a bit on what I was trying to say, by way of a few excerpts from his Bloodstream Sermon.

    "If you don't see your nature, invoking Buddhas, reciting sutras, making offerings, and keeping precepts are all useless. Invoking Buddhas results in good karma, reciting sutras results in a good memory, keeping precepts results in a good rebirth, and making offerings results in future blessings - but no Buddha."

    "A Buddha doesn't observe precepts. A Buddha doesn't do good or evil."

    Is Bodhidharma saying that since Shakyamuni's life is the guide of our lives that we should abandon the Precepts and forget the sutras? No, not at all, but he is saying that the sutras point towards our essential Buddha nature, helpers to realization. Beyond that, as Bodhidharma later says, sutras become so much prose.

    This sutra, that sutra, Mahayana, Theravada, what does it all matter if you don't see your own true nature? The nature that sees that there are no sutras, no Mahayana, no Theravada, no Buddha beyond the Buddha that is everyone and everything.

  10. #60
    Senior Member Hoyu's Avatar
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    Re: Self-Defense

    Fuken wrote:
    Jodi, I think you are doing just fine, please ignore the psudointelectual ramblings above, the only way a suta or sutra would help you out in the situation you are talking about would be as an improvised weapon.
    What a great response to tie all this back to the original question of this post!

    Gassho,
    John

  11. #61

    Re: Self-Defense

    Hi,

    I have enjoyed this tangled thread(s), but would like to offer a few comments on some things mentioned ...

    _______________

    - 1 - The connection with the "samurai" was just the reality of history ... for the warriors were the government in Japan for centuries. Even Dogen had a sponsor who was a "warlord" (Hatano Yoshishige) ... as did probably all the major temples in Japan (for there was simply no having a temple without official sponsorship). Read pages 30 and 31 here on Lord Hatano ...

    http://books.google.com/books?id=BnLOFw ... ge&f=false

    Brian Victoria's book "Zen At War" also discusses how Buddhists of all stripes in Japan sometimes got caught up in the nationalism of the day. (Although, great inaccuracies and exaggerations in that book have since led me to take some of the content with a grain of salt) ...

    viewtopic.php?p=17608#p17608

    But the truth is that, in the realities of the world, Buddhism ... from the beginning ... has been associated with kings, lords and (thus) military power, in India, Thailand, Burma, Sri Lanka, China, Korea.

    The Buddha also seems to have been of two minds on this, and certainly accepted support and donations from powerful people. On the one hand, there are some writings in which he is framed to say that killing is never skillful.

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ssage.html

    On the other hand, in other Sutta he did seem to countenance a nation having an army for certain limited purposes, and its discreet use.

    http://www.beyondthenet.net/thedway/soldier.htm

    http://www.urbandharma.org/udharma6/militarycanon.html

    Now, I believe that a Buddhist would counsel the warrior to make peace whenever possible, but also recognized that societies in this complex world need armies.

    Fuken, who is in active service and also quite involved with the "military Sangha" of soldiers, sailors and marines who are Buddhist practitioners, is much more conversant on the topic than I am.

    _______________

    - 2 - The Precepts were not originally intended to be rigid. In fact, there were no Precepts at all in the early days, and the vast body of Precepts only developed, one by one, as various serious harmful acts occurred over the years in the ever growing Sangha. The Buddha was much like a legislature making rules as problems appeared (and exceptions and interpretations to rules too).

    As well, just before his death, he advised his successors to do away with all the "minor" Precepts and just keep the "major" ones. However, he never spelled out exactly what he meant by "minor" and "major", so his successors thought it best to keep about -ALL- of them for fear of mistakenly abandoning what the Buddha meant as "major"! Over the centuries, the literal and fixed interpretation of these hundreds of rules often become quite rigid.

    Furthermore, the Precepts ... like all societal rules ... were very closely tied to the cultural traditions, values and societal structures in which they were created. Because ancient India was not classical China which was not medeivel Japan, interpretations of these rules did change in many ways as they moved from culture to culture, age to age. Now, as they move to the 21st century west, and toward a more lay oriented practice, they are adjusting again. The fact of the matter is that even the Zen clergy in Japan and the West has moved from a "celibate monastic" model to something more resembling "ministers" having wives, children and home lives. The Precepts have adjusted to fit these needs.

    BUT, this flexibility does not mean we run to libertine extremes, throwing out the baby with the bath water either. That would be a specious argument to assert that any change or "loosening" of the rules means we have to all now have orgies of unprotected sex, drugs and violence! :shock: The "Bodhisattva Precepts" (which are the Precepts for both lay and ordained in Japanese lines, and which we undertake in our annual Jukai) have come, over the centuries, to uphold and express what is at the Heart of all the Precepts ... non-harming ... while also allowing for great flexibiity.

    Why? Because life is complicated, with ever changing situations, and any law or rule that does not have flexibility will break if it does not bend. Even Orthodox Jews know this, and thus their rabbis will always find interpretations, and exceptions within exceptions, to the equally detailed rules they follow.

    For further reading on all of the above, I very much recommend all the various scholars papers contained in this book:

    Going Forth: Visions of Buddhist Vinaya
    http://www.amazon.com/Going-Forth-Visio ... 0824827872

    _______________

    - 3 - The Buddhist Sutta/Sutras were written by 1000 different men, with 1000 different viewpoints on the details of Buddhist Practice. Even if actually the words of the historical Buddha, he may have spoken somewhat different teachings ... and recommended various practices ... to different people, at different times with differing needs. I sometimes think of Gautama Buddha as the "founder" (much like Henry Ford for the Model T car), and then Buddhism took off on a couple of thousand years of refinement, change to suit cultures, trial and error, adding and subtracting and evolution. Although the Heart of these wonderful Teachings are as much alive today as they were anywhere or any time in the past ... they come in many flavors.

    The Mahayana folks looked down on the earlier "Hinayana" teachings as "lesser" teachings, "half baked" Buddhism. That is for sure. (And Zen folks did the same with many non-Zenny teachings, even in the Mahayana, even in competing Zen schools). However, I have no trouble (neither did Dogen) with dipping into the ancient "Hinayana" Suttas when there is a worthwhile teaching or parable or recommendation there. I also feel no compulsion to accept all of it, because one size of practice does not fit all in Buddhism. All wonderful, even if we do not take it all.

    _______________

    - 4- As to self-defense, we have had some wonderful chats on this in the past in preparation for our 'Jukai', looking at the Precept on Preserving Life, and elsewhere too:

    viewtopic.php?p=33414#p33414

    Although there may be times to sacrifice one's own life for a greater good, I also am likely to use serious or deadly force if there is an intruder in my house seemingly about to do harm to my wife or child (or me!). I believe that both the law in about all Western countries ... and the Buddhist Precepts ... allow for that. I do not believe it hypothetical, because I am sure that I would if faced with an intruder who I perceived as any such threat.

    Apart from that, my wife is an Ai-ki-do-ist (2nd Dan black belt ... actually, I probably will let her deal with the intruder! :shock: ) ... and I believe that Jodi says it right:

    In my martial arts school, we are taught numerous methods to prevent attacks in the first place and to fight only in self-defense. ... Don't attack them unless they actually attack you. If that same person does move to attack you with that knife even after you give them your wallet, then use the self-defense necessary to get away safely.
    But if necessary, do what is necessary.

    Yet ...

    Almost all the Buddhist teachers I can think of (including me too, for what it is worth) would say that we must also bear all the Karmic consequences of our volitional words, thoughts and acts, no matter whether we had a "reason" for killing or not.

    You may kill the cat, but you still likely have to pay the price in some way.

    A Tibetan teacher (Chagdud Tulku) relates this famous Jataka legend about a previous incarnation of the Buddha ...

    (In a previous life, the Buddha was Captain Compassionate Heart, sailing with 500 merchants. An evil pirate, Dung Thungchen (Blackspear) appeared, threatening to kill them all. )The captain, a bodhisattva himself, saw the [pirate]'s murderous intention and realized this crime would result in eons of torment for the murderer. In his compassion, the captain was willing to take hellish torment upon himself by killing the man to prevent karmic suffering that would be infinity greater than the suffering of the murdered victims. The captain's compassion was impartial; his motivation was utterly selfless.
    I am not sure about the effect of our Karma in lives to come ... but I do know that we likely will bear the effects of our actions in this life in some way. I have a friend, an ex-policeman, who had to kill someone in a perfectly necessary and justified act to save lives. Yet, my friend still carries that with him to this day.

    No, taking lives is never a "good" thing.
    Gassho, Jundo

    PS - As Chris said too ...

    However, no matter what, I would always look at the man who thought to attack me and my family and wonder. What happened that he saw this as an acceptable choice? What must have gone on in his life to drive him to this extreme? Was his heart truly evil, or was it just his circumstance that put this thought in his mind? What kindness could have been shown to him in his life, instead of suffering, that could have precluded this action?

  12. #62

    Re: Self-Defense

    Great posts.

    I remember hearing a talk where the Dalai Lama was addressing self-defense he said;
    "If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun. Not at the head, where a fatal wound might result. But at some other body part, such as a leg."

    If someone one is attacking you, you must defend yourself. Living in accord with the precepts of do not take life includes protecting your own life as well. We should not be walking around like "I am a Buddhist, I'm a bodhisattva, here take my wallet no attachment...oh a knife...well you know the story of the Buddha where he said if you are walking under a tree..."

    the trick is, if you have the training and the skill to control your attacker and control the situation to the point where you are in a good position, call the police, run away...flee...the point is do not return the same violence back, show compassion by allowing the cops to arrest...

    Gassho

    Seiryu

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    Replies: 57
    Last Post: 11-10-2011, 11:21 AM
  3. In defense of holding on, sort of
    By AlanLa in forum TREELEAF COMMUNITY: Topics about Zazen, Zen, Buddhism & MORE ZAZEN!
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 07-01-2011, 12:48 PM

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