Renunciation Impossible?

No holds barred discussion on the Buddhadharma. Argue about rebirth, karma, commentarial interpretations etc. Be nice to each other.

Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:21 pm

Huseng wrote:The need to earn an income is tied to having to rent or upkeep a private residence, maybe drive a car, eat whatever you want rather than living on donated foods, etc... whereas a renunciate by definition is supposed to be free of such concerns.


Yes, but in this day and age the path of renunciation is impossible.

N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Indrajala » Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:36 am

Namdrol wrote:
Huseng wrote:The need to earn an income is tied to having to rent or upkeep a private residence, maybe drive a car, eat whatever you want rather than living on donated foods, etc... whereas a renunciate by definition is supposed to be free of such concerns.


Yes, but in this day and age the path of renunciation is impossible.

N



Why do you say that?
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
Former staff member
 
Posts: 5570
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: India

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:31 pm

Huseng wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Huseng wrote:The need to earn an income is tied to having to rent or upkeep a private residence, maybe drive a car, eat whatever you want rather than living on donated foods, etc... whereas a renunciate by definition is supposed to be free of such concerns.


Yes, but in this day and age the path of renunciation is impossible.

N



Why do you say that?


Because the power of afflictions is too strong.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Caz » Sat Aug 06, 2011 1:30 pm

Namdrol wrote:
Huseng wrote:The need to earn an income is tied to having to rent or upkeep a private residence, maybe drive a car, eat whatever you want rather than living on donated foods, etc... whereas a renunciate by definition is supposed to be free of such concerns.


Yes, but in this day and age the path of renunciation is impossible.

N


Im sure you know as well as I renunciation is a mind, Perhapes it maybe true that the lifestyle attached to one whom is a traditional renunciate may not be appropriate in the west but the mind is more then possible. :buddha1:
Abandoning Dharma is, in the final analysis, disparaging the Hinayana because of the Mahayana; favoring the Hinayana on account of the Mahayana; playing off sutra against tantra; playing off the four classes of the tantras against each other; favoring one of the Tibetan schools—the Sakya, Gelug, Kagyu, or Nyingma—and disparaging the rest; and so on. In other words, we abandon Dharma any time we favor our own tenets and disparage the rest.

Liberation in the Palm of your hand~Kyabje Pabongkha Rinpoche.
Caz
 
Posts: 539
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 12:49 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Astus » Sat Aug 06, 2011 1:39 pm

Namdrol wrote:Because the power of afflictions is too strong.


What exactly is it that made afflictions any stronger than a hundred years back? Or is it geographical, or cultural perhaps? I don't see any apparent reason why living as a renunciate now would be more difficult than any time before. True, Buddhism doesn't have the same level of support as in Asian countries, however, that is a different matter that can change with time.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4127
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:06 pm

Caz wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Huseng wrote:The need to earn an income is tied to having to rent or upkeep a private residence, maybe drive a car, eat whatever you want rather than living on donated foods, etc... whereas a renunciate by definition is supposed to be free of such concerns.


Yes, but in this day and age the path of renunciation is impossible.

N


Im sure you know as well as I renunciation is a mind, Perhapes it maybe true that the lifestyle attached to one whom is a traditional renunciate may not be appropriate in the west but the mind is more then possible. :buddha1:


The path of renunciation is not effective anymore, that is the point. If the path of renuncitation were still effective, there would be no need for Vajrayāna.

N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby ground » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:23 pm

Namdrol wrote:If the path of renunciation were still effective, there would be no need for Vajrayāna.


Actually the path of renunciation still is very effective ... hmh ... what does this tell us about Vajrayāna then (if your logic is right)?


Kind regards
User avatar
ground
 
Posts: 1782
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2009 8:31 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby LastLegend » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:25 pm

TMingyur wrote:
Namdrol wrote:If the path of renunciation were still effective, there would be no need for Vajrayāna.


Actually the path of renunciation still is very effective ... hmh ... what does this tell us about Vajrayāna then (if your logic is right)?


Kind regards


:bow: You have come once again my friend. :anjali:
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)
User avatar
LastLegend
 
Posts: 1736
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Washington DC

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:28 pm

TMingyur wrote:
Namdrol wrote:If the path of renunciation were still effective, there would be no need for Vajrayāna.


Actually the path of renunciation still is very effective ... hmh ... what does this tell us about Vajrayāna then (if your logic is right)?



If you exemplify the path of renunciation, I rest my case -- it is not effective anymore.

N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby ground » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:34 pm

Namdrol wrote:
TMingyur wrote:
Namdrol wrote:If the path of renunciation were still effective, there would be no need for Vajrayāna.


Actually the path of renunciation still is very effective ... hmh ... what does this tell us about Vajrayāna then (if your logic is right)?



If you exemplify the path of renunciation, I rest my case


How could I exemplify anything other than "postings"?

The case be yours, mine is none.


Kind regards
User avatar
ground
 
Posts: 1782
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2009 8:31 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:37 pm

TMingyur wrote:How could I exemplify anything other than "postings"?

The case be yours, mine is none.



Right, the words you repeatedly say in this board have no meaning, no effect, no karma, no consequences....sure.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby ground » Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:43 pm

Namdrol wrote:
TMingyur wrote:How could I exemplify anything other than "postings"?

The case be yours, mine is none.



Right, the words you repeatedly say in this board have no meaning, no effect, no karma, no consequences....sure.


You say it. Harboring the idea of having said or saying anything that is of importance beyond one's own sphere would be a case of exemplifying the opposite of renunciation.


kind regards
User avatar
ground
 
Posts: 1782
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2009 8:31 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 06, 2011 4:50 pm

TMingyur wrote:Harboring the idea of having said or saying anything that is of importance beyond one's own sphere would be a case of exemplifying the opposite of renunciation.



Truly, you are only talking to yourself.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby ground » Sat Aug 06, 2011 4:59 pm

Namdrol wrote:
TMingyur wrote:Harboring the idea of having said or saying anything that is of importance beyond one's own sphere would be a case of exemplifying the opposite of renunciation.



Truly, you are only talking to yourself.


Yes and while doing so I enjoyed talking to you again.

Take care.

Kind regards
User avatar
ground
 
Posts: 1782
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2009 8:31 am

Re: Renunciation not Impossible

Postby Will » Sat Aug 06, 2011 5:18 pm

Namdrol, what a dopey notion that renunciation is impossible because of modern afflictions. I must be missing something.

What exactly do you mean by renunciation?
Revealing one essence: this means the inherently pure, complete, luminous essence, which is pure of its own nature. -- Fa-tsang
User avatar
Will
 
Posts: 1740
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2009 4:21 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby ronnewmexico » Sat Aug 06, 2011 6:14 pm

As a aside and I hope N doesn't mind...well thank you Will.

I know I also am presumptive and combative at times..... but I can recognize a good way to say a thing.... that was a excellent way to express disagreement without the added presumption of ignorance or moral fault in the opponant.

I'm sure you don't necessarily need that statement of mine but I thought we should recognize good conduct as well as we recognize bad.... :smile:

ON N's issue..yes that seems to bear explaination... what do we mean by this. I lived as a younger person at times for years total on the dole begging for money with my own personal spiritual quest of sorts but I'd guess this is way off context here though that be a form of renunciation.
What form is intended?
"This order considers that progress can be achieved more rapidly during a single month of self-transformation through terrifying conditions in rough terrain and in "the abode of harmful forces" than through meditating for a period of three years in towns and monasteries"....Takpo Tashi Namgyal.
User avatar
ronnewmexico
 
Posts: 1601
Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2009 10:17 pm

Re: Renunciation not Impossible

Postby daelm » Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:19 pm

Will wrote:Namdrol, what a dopey notion that renunciation is impossible because of modern afflictions. I must be missing something.

What exactly do you mean by renunciation?


actually, it's a very serious idea and not dopey at all :). the notion in classical Buddhist teachings is that renunciation becomes harder and harder over time in cycles - as early as Buddhaghosa, Buddhist commentators are cataloging the stages of the decline of Buddhism (and the concomitant dilution of the power of renunciation).

if you find that classical approach hard to swallow, then a different way of looking at it - one that convinced me to take it more seriously - is by population growth, urbanization and increasing depth of distractions. basically, 2500 years ago the human population of the world was roughly half a billion. at the same time, urbanization was weaker than it is now and the type of urbanization was significantly different.

with less of the world terminally committed to urban systems, the scope for living outside of the urban structures is greater. in other words, there are more non-urban, peri-urban and part-urban lifestyles thrown into every community mix, and so the scope for being simply non-urban is much, much greater. the reason this is important is because urbanization is quite bad for us - it goes hand in hand with (a) a much, much greater mercantile focus, and (b) a much greater utilization of an individual's time in highly structured routines. both of these qualities directly counter effective renunciation in obvious ways - the former focuses the individual on attachment, and the second utilizes his or her time intensely and habitually without time for a balance to be rediscovered. worse, it's not merely that the time is used, but that the unallocated time is spent recovering from the allocated time.

in fact, urbanization is so bad for humans in so many ways that when the biologist and ecologist Jared Diamond was asked what was the worst mistake humans beings have made he replied "the agricultural revolution" merely on the grounds that it made urbanization possible.

the modern world has taken this to an extreme and tied all of us into working as wage-slaves in a highly urbanized, highly systematized commercial economy, merely for food. the scope for wandering, free from the fetters of the past, free from the fetters of the future (as the first Buddhist sangha did) is nil. in our reality, the only people who come close to this freedom in terms of pure logistics are the homeless and beggars. this is important because the complete freedom from planning, from thoughts of the past and future, the dedicated time for immersive meditation, the relinquishment of any clinging to both desires and the actual objects of desire in practice (not merely in aspiration) is repeatedly mentioned by the Buddha in the sutras: it is these freedoms that make the practice come to life, he says. so the web of urbanization works against effective renunciation in a very serious way.

then, there is population growth itself - in tandem with increasing urbanization has come increasing population growth. the effect of that has been to (a) make it harder to find real solitude and (b) clutter the airwaves. the first is easy to describe, being simply the fact that as there are more and more people, you tend to bump into them more and more. another way of looking at this is as the problem of "away". if you really think about it, the history of human beings has been the history of "away". whenever people didn't like where they were, they went away, and since they were often like-minded, the places they settled tended to be formed around ideas that were different to the place they left. so, historically, "away" meant that there would always be lots of diversity in human communities and (as any ecologist will tell you) diversity in a system is a sign of strength. in modern times, we've used up all the "aways", and we are headed towards a mono-culture of commerce and urban acquisition. with all the "aways" being used up, real solitude is harder to find and to become established in. the second part is harder to swallow, but i have - if we accept that this realm is is the composite creation of the beings that experience it, then the more beings experiencing it the harder it is for one of them to shake it off. there is a type of focusing of the attention that comes with large groups of animals and we're not that immune.

lastly, the specific type of urbanization we're undergoing is frighteningly new in the world. there has never before been a global practice of attempting to inculcate shades of desire and gluttony (marketing and advertising), never before been such extraordinary (and evil?) sophistication in the quality of analysis applied to keeping us infantile, chewing, sucking, reaching, holding and crying. never before has there been such an orchestrated sensory overload of films,television, live spectacles and so on, consisting of sharp visuals, movement, color, pervasive sexual imagery, constant violence, loud shocking sounds, all adrenaline inducing and all supported by specific analysis of our neurology. even more amazing, the objects that we have as part of our lives (even the good ones and the useful ones) are specifically tailored to bypass our discriminatory consciousness and push all our buttons. a kettle has long since stopped being a utilitarian thing (a pot for tea) and every kettle is now entombed in a marketing campaign that promises you eternal youth for using it.

so even if you are modern renunciate, in a monastery, some part of your day is spent planning for the future, some part analyzing the past, because the monastery has to exist in this kind of world. so some part of your day is spent accounting, some budgeting, some fund-raising. some part of your day is aware of cell-phones that are designed to be suited to your needs, some to workstations or laptops, some to flight schedules, online booking services, some to office work, and so on. each of these objects and activities comes with a string of needs and mundane context, planting a fifth column of ordinary attachment in your mind stream, and working against the power of your renunciation.

if you read the Pali Canon, people are getting enlightened all the time. they hear something, enter the Path of Seeing or its equivalent immediately, and are pretty much on track with not a lot left to do. it makes sense to me that the reasons that there are such afterwords and footnotes and codicils to the sutras, are because people had both the mental space (the freedom from a highly sophisticated intrusion of urbanization and commerce into their personalities and from a sensory assault like none that ever been seen before) as well as the physical space to set off into and bring their experience into completeness. so they did.

that we are not seeing that anymore, is an effect of the changing state of the world. this is not much different from the classical notion of Buddhist decline. just a decline clothed in our everyday experience.



d

(caveat: value of previous characters = two cents)
daelm
 
Posts: 143
Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 8:49 pm

Re: Renunciation not Impossible

Postby Malcolm » Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:28 pm

Will wrote:Namdrol, what a dopey notion that renunciation is impossible because of modern afflictions. I must be missing something.

What exactly do you mean by renunciation?


Giving up sense objects.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby mindyourmind » Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:51 pm

My only possible gripe would be with the "impossible" part.

Difficult, damn-near impossible yes, but (hopefully) not impossible.
As bad as bad becomes its not a part of you

Talk Talk
User avatar
mindyourmind
 
Posts: 457
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 11:11 am
Location: South Africa

Re: Renunciation Impossible?

Postby Malcolm » Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:01 pm

mindyourmind wrote:My only possible gripe would be with the "impossible" part.

Difficult, damn-near impossible yes, but (hopefully) not impossible.


The point is that the path of renunciation is no longer effective. There used to be hundreds of thousands of arhats, now there are none. There used to be hundreds of thousands of bodhisattvas on the stages, now there are very few.

The Hinayāna and Mahāyāna paths of renunciation is no longer effective in this degenerate age.

That does not mean we should not have renunciation in the more general sense of a sense of renunciation of samsara and so on -- but the path of renunciation is no longer effective overall.

N
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10217
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Next

Return to Open Dharma

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: conebeckham, jeeprs, MSNbot Media, Phuntsog Tashi and 26 guests

>