Celibacy

A forum for discussion of Buddhist ethics.
In the bone yard
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Re: Celibacy

Postby In the bone yard » Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:22 pm

Not you greg, how did you get that?
I meant a Church (or a top head in the church) telling parishioners they can or can't do something, morally speaking.
The church is still going through a lot of hypocrisy right now.

In the bone yard
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Re: Celibacy

Postby In the bone yard » Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:43 pm


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Grigoris
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Grigoris » Mon Aug 12, 2013 7:14 am

"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

In the bone yard
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Re: Celibacy

Postby In the bone yard » Mon Aug 12, 2013 10:06 pm

I'm sorry about that...I'm not as good as I want to be with these forums. I'm still learning!

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Aemilius
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Aemilius » Wed Aug 14, 2013 11:18 am

svaha

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Konchog1
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Konchog1 » Thu Aug 15, 2013 10:50 pm

Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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wisdom
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Re: Celibacy

Postby wisdom » Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:00 pm

Its just my opinion, although one shared by many others, that ultimately those who are really serious about the path will seek to *eventually* become chaste in thought, word and deed at least for a period of time in order to overcome sexual desire and lust. The benefits of this are recorded in many traditions throughout the world and it spans thousands of years of time, it has been said by many of the greatest sages this world has ever produced.

The best approach is to not develop any neurosis about it. Whatever you do, if you create more stress and suffering, that is not the path (in the Dharma). Although struggle might be required and so a brief period of internal war or stress might ensue, ultimately if one is ready for the practice of celibacy one will experience directly the cessation of attachment to sexual desire and the benefits of chastity will arise on their own.

Sexual activity of any kind is samsaric like everything else. As such it is ultimately unreal and unimportant. Any importance or value placed on it is placing importance and value on a samsaric activity. The only case where such value and importance is in line with the path to enlightenment is as skillful means in the various paths of using sex and desire as the path that many traditions offer. Otherwise its essence is suffering, its nature is endless, and it is a form of bondage and delusion.

If you are looking for a way to justify bringing yourself to orgasm this is equal to looking for a way to justify engaging samsara because of your desires. Whether the penis enters the vagina or not is irrelevant. If you think you need to masturbate and engage in mental fantasy you basically think you need to create mental and emotional obscurations and indulge them for your own pleasure. I fail to see how anyone can actually line this up with the Dharma regardless of what scripture says unless it is combined with skillful means.

If anyone thinks otherwise, I challenge them to try to remain chaste in thought, word and deed for even a week (not in isolation) and see what happens. Most people will experience effects that will show them that their minds are totally attached to this idea and these actions, and you will be able to see just how entangled in samsara we get when it comes to sex.

By not placing value on sex, we can enjoy it when it is available and not be attached to it when it is not. By not placing value on sexual activity, we can simply refrain from the pointless actions of masturbation. The only case where masturbation as indulgence is really in line with Dharma is when ones lust is so strong that one cannot focus for even a moment on ones practice. It is better to release that energy and then engage in meaningful practice than to try to practice while fantasizing and sick with desire.

I say all this as someone who has struggled with this issue for years and experienced both the benefits of chastity and the pitfalls of continuing with sexual activity of any kind. Ultimately all of samsara is a misappropriation of value onto something which is valueless and pointless. Its like making a cheap product but then calling it a luxury item and selling it in a store for the rich. People spend 600$ on an item that is usually worth 20$ because someone told them its valuable. The true wealth is freedom from samsaric entanglements. We can enjoy sensory input when it is combined with skillful means and wisdom. Otherwise, we are screwed :tongue:

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Konchog1
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Konchog1 » Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:54 am

Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:49 pm

"it must be coming from the mouthy mastermind of raunchy rapper, Johnny Dangerous”

-Jeff H.

greentara
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Re: Celibacy

Postby greentara » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:09 pm

Johnny, Spot on! "I remember going to strip clubs as a young man, one thing that is very interesting about these places is just how little what is going on is actually about sex, the pervasive feeling is loneliness, isolation, and people lacking a feeling of love, acceptance, or belonging..on both ends of the transaction, it's a fantasy of being "wanted", played out through sex" You're a reflective man. Unfortunately many keep repeating the same old repetitive fantasy and then feel isolated but don't know why. Why is life so pointless, so meaningless?
To know why and when to stop is maturity....that is the spiritual journey.

In the bone yard
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Re: Celibacy

Postby In the bone yard » Thu Dec 12, 2013 12:15 am

Engaging in SIE is socially acceptable. Perfectly normal. And if it's socially acceptable then what could be wrong with it?

Several weeks ago while at work this subject came up, and it was agreed that we are human and it is a biological need...it was impossible for anyone to avoid doing it. I asked if the saints from the bible had done it. I just wanted to see where they were spiritually on the topic. After it was confirmed that they had, I asked if Jesus had ever done it. The answer after a short pause was, "Yea of course!" Joining in on the debate was a 'registered' minister belonging to a church. He has one of those licenses that verify one as being a licensed minister. Been married 20 years.

After that ran its course I asked them what the moral requirements were to become a saint from the bible, or to be declared a saint by today's standard. The answer didn't have an impact on me or I would have remembered it, and telling them what it meant to be a buddhist saint would have been a waste of time.

There are people in this world who believe it's impossible not to engage in SIE. What if it weren't socially acceptable? What if it was considered shameful like it used to be? Would it be possible then?

But if there are people who are bothered by it then there has to be something to it. I'm reminded of when I was young and struggling with being a strict Catholic. I thought it was unfair that I had to abide by all these rules and others were living seemingly free and unaffected. I knew I could never be free without being unhappy. I didn't think this was fair and I questioned it deeply for years. Were these people going to heaven when they died and where did that leave me?

It is said in the tantras that desire closes to the door to virtue.
Virtue brings joy.
Mahayana sutras state that joy arises when we care more about others than ourselves.

grihamedhi
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Re: Celibacy (against sin of masturbation)

Postby grihamedhi » Thu May 08, 2014 2:40 pm


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Zhen Li
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Zhen Li » Thu May 08, 2014 7:20 pm

Buddhism doesn't have sin, and doesn't have God (it has devas who aren't able to be moral enforcers). How skilful and not skilful work in Buddhism is simple: you act by desire, you give rise to attachment. You then will want something you don't have, or not want something you do have, and you suffer.

As for hell, I'm pretty sure masturbation isn't said to lead to hell (that's usually intended for predominantly angry/hateful deeds), but if you are sexually attracted to yourself, I recall Berzin saying you'll be reborn as a fly who enjoys eating faeces and flying around urinals (those are the most annoying). Of course, I can see masturbation as leading to rebirth as an animal of various sorts, or a ghost.

Of course, for lay people only the Pali texts don't define sexual misconduct as including masturbation. The Upāsakaśīla Sūtra does however, which is available in Chinese. That being said, you can only uphold the precept you know about, and usually it's not defined in the precept bestowal ceremony. How to stop? Same way as anything else in Buddhism.

And by the way, Krishna certainly is more erotic that people like ISKON will admit (just see Kumarasambhava for instance), and when you worship him, you worship a penis (lingam) whether you like it or not. :twothumbsup:

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rory
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Re: Celibacy

Postby rory » Fri May 09, 2014 4:17 am

Wow this forum is filled with a bunch of Christians, your obsessions are so weird to me (jewish background, sex is regarded as perfectly normal and desirable)...

Now as for porn and other sex addictions this for sure is a male problem. Because every day in my neighborhood I see half-naked guys in tiny shorts baring their washboard stomachs, showing off their firm buttocks and toned legs and I'm fine. wait, I'm a lesbian! Well the heterosexual ladies manage to restrain themselves just fine and go about their business and I do too. For addictions you need to see an analyst and work through your problem, repressing it won't help.

Anyway I manage to read romance novels (women like them) with explicit scenes and I enjoy them and then I put them down and go back to work, studying, dating, practicing the Dharma....like a million other women.


gassho
Rory
Namu Kanzeon Bosatsu
Chih-I:
The Tai-ching states "the women in the realms of Mara, Sakra and Brahma all neither abandoned ( their old) bodies nor received (new) bodies. They all received buddhahood with their current bodies (genshin)" Thus these verses state that the dharma nature is like a great ocean. No right or wrong is preached (within it) Ordinary people and sages are equal, without superiority or inferiority
Paul, Groner "The Lotus Sutra in Japanese Culture"eds. Tanabe p. 58
https://www.tendai-usa.org/

Myoho-Nameless
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Myoho-Nameless » Fri May 09, 2014 7:35 am

I do appreciate the lack of anti sex sentiment in Japanese Buddhism...
I just don't belong.

greentara
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Re: Celibacy

Postby greentara » Fri May 09, 2014 7:47 am

Sex is not bad of itself, its simply that lust and desire disturb the mind. Anyone who thinks about the subject deeply has to admit that the mind is affected.. To gloss over the issue with ideas that sound free wheeling and breezy does not address the underlying issue and seems to lack any sort of serious reflection.
I have also read and watched trash movies and books but realise they are not conducive to meditation and stilling the mind. Heartfelt devotion to a teacher or teaching is a great help.

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Kaccāni
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Kaccāni » Fri May 09, 2014 8:53 am

Well. I see a couple of aspects to this.

1. Yes, sex comes with feeling, or even arises on feeling. Nature made it like that.
2. If sex is done, the feeling subsides, instantly. Nature made it like that. You do not even need to meditate to get rid of it. Instant liberation.
3. You do not need to create an artificial emotion from that. That´s what Porn does, so to speak. It keeps you artificially in a state of arousal for an unusually long period of time, and in that time there even can be conditioning of the mind, dependent on that state of arousal. That´s what Porn does also, in which case it is bad, because it conditions a dependency for continually increased stimuli to achieve the same. So it alters the normal bodily function.
4. Tantric people also found that out that this "energy" can be used, but there the conditioning is used a tad different ...

So yes, that permanent everyday arousal is sort of bad, and extensive porn consumption on top sure doesn´t make it better. And the subtle levels of advertising sexual ideals in every day media as the norm are probably even worse.

But as little as one has to create an artificial emotion out of a mere feeling that arises in the body during sex, or upon spotting a "potential partner", as little is it necessary to create an emotional story of aversion of that feeling arising and becoming puritan. I cannot see how both would hardly be beneficial to liberation.

So the problem is not arousal (bodily sensation). The problem is creating stories on it. So if there are two arousals, and there is consent, so why not. Then there is not more to that. If there is arousal, but there is attachment or aversion, then better let the defilements subside or problems will come.

Otherwise one could just as well say "eating is not good for the mind."

Best wishes
Gwenn
Shush! I'm doing nose-picking practice!

Simon E.
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Simon E. » Fri May 09, 2014 9:00 am

" My heart's in the Highlands
my heart is not here.
My heart's in the Highlands
chasing the deer."

Robert V.C. Burns.

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Dan74
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Dan74 » Fri May 09, 2014 11:18 am


Andrew108
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Re: Celibacy

Postby Andrew108 » Fri May 09, 2014 12:33 pm

If masturbation led to an inferior birth then there wouldn't be many humans left. Everyone masturbates at some point in their life after pubity. And why not?

We never see sexuality as a form if intelligence. I wonder why?
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.


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