The harms of Masturbation and Porn

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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

theanarchist wrote:
Zhen Li wrote: In order to truly be disciplined and have a tamed mind.

Having a tamed mind and discipline in a dharma sense has nothing to do with what we here in the west usually consider to be discipline.


Because the definition of discipline in buddhism is totally different to how the word is defined in western languages.
The Buddhist definition of discipline is at odds with every culture. Every culture consists of ignorant fools.

Do you wanna be a cowboy or a Buddhist? Does Dharma matter more to you, or culture?
Malcolm
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Malcolm »

Zhen Li wrote: Do you wanna be a cowboy or a Buddhist? Does Dharma matter more to you, or culture?
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theanarchist
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Zhen Li wrote: The Buddhist definition of discipline is at odds with every culture. Every culture consists of ignorant fools.

Ah, we are going all judgemental again?

Different words having different definitions in different cultures has nothing do do with people being fools. Even in English vs German, my native language, words that superficially have the same meaning are not a 1:1 translation. You have to know the exact definition in each language to pick the right word(s) to translate correctly. That doesn't mean anyone is stupid or foolish.

And if you don't translate correctly, the actual meaning of what was said is lost, or partly lost, or muddled.
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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

You're moving the goal posts. We were talking about cultural views of discipline versus the Dharma's approach to discipline.

Now you're talking about translation difficulties, using statements that are enough to excuse you from practicing any Dharma.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Zhen Li wrote:You're moving the goal posts. We were talking about cultural views of discipline .

No, we are currently talking about different definitions of "discipline" in different cultural contexts.


I have tried to learn Tibetan for a while 15 years ago and what puzzled me first is that all those terms you find in dharma texts in Tibetan language are actually really hard to translate fully, because one word in our western language doesn't do justice to what the meaining in Tibetan is.

And I would assume that it's similar with dharma texts in sanskrit or pali or chinese.


So if you find the word "discipline" in some dharma text in a western language you can be sure that the original has a meaning that is is only partly covered by that one word.
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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

theanarchist wrote:
Zhen Li wrote:You're moving the goal posts. We were talking about cultural views of discipline .

No, we are currently talking about different definitions of "discipline" in different cultural contexts.


I have tried to learn Tibetan for a while 15 years ago and what puzzled me first is that all those terms you find in dharma texts in Tibetan language are actually really hard to translate fully, because one word in our western language doesn't do justice to what the meaining in Tibetan is.

And I would assume that it's similar with dharma texts in sanskrit or pali or chinese.


So if you find the word "discipline" in some dharma text in a western language you can be sure that the original has a meaning that is is only partly covered by that one word.
Far too general a statement. Some terms are ambiguous, others are not - talk specifics or you're not being serious. Sila is not a highly ambiguous term, particularly because we know what it entails as it is stated explicitly in the texts.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

smcj wrote:
Ah, we are going all judgemental again?
I think theanarchist's highlighting of the issue of being judgmental is right on the money for our western pathology. I see a parallel with 12 step spirituality here, where addiction is portrayed to be a disease, thus removing any judgement or criticism. I don't actually believe that addiction is a disease, unless you define it as a spiritual disease (dis/not + ease). But in any case the salient truth is that in order to turn the situation around there has to be no judgement or criticism involved.


Which corresponds very much with the technique of shamata.

Where the risings ONLY settle and clam down if you don't start to endulge in judgmental afterthoughts about them, if you become judgmental, you feed them.


The same way, celibacy with an attitude of "sex is dirty and evil" will not work. Catholicism has proven that for centuries.
Last edited by theanarchist on Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

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smcj wrote:
Ah, we are going all judgemental again?
I think theanarchist's highlighting of the issue of being judgmental is right on the money for our western pathology. I see a parallel with 12 step spirituality here, where addiction is portrayed to be a disease, thus removing any judgement or criticism. I don't actually believe that addiction is a disease, unless you define it as a spiritual disease (dis/not + ease). But in any case the salient truth is that in order to turn the situation around there has to be no judgement or criticism involved.
If you don't judge the deeds, you can't evaluate whether they are healthy or an addiction.

I believe you have to dislike bad habits and wrong views, as a training tool, in order to overcome them. That doesn't mean you continue using those training tools once you are beyond them.

This is why the sutras teach meditation on the foulness of the body, and list innumerable disadvantages to unwholesome deeds.

You must know the downfalls in order to have the motivation to overcome them. Ignorance is the problem, and viewing the pleasurable as painful and the painful as pleasurable is the worst kind of ignorance when it comes to improving one's practice and discipline.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Malcolm »

Zhen Li wrote: This is why the sutras teach meditation on the foulness of the body...
.
If you are a common Mahāyāna practitioner, this is fine. This is not acceptable in Vajrayāna.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

Malcolm wrote:
Zhen Li wrote: This is why the sutras teach meditation on the foulness of the body...
.
If you are a common Mahāyāna practitioner, this is fine. This is not acceptable in Vajrayāna.
Of course.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Zhen Li wrote:
This is why the sutras teach meditation on the foulness of the body, and list innumerable disadvantages to unwholesome deeds.

This is an antidote to counteract the idealisation of the body that come with attachment. An anti idealisation and attachment medicine, like an Aspirin is an anti headache medication. It's meant to remedy a wrong view, it's not meant to become a new wrong view itself.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Malcolm wrote:
Zhen Li wrote: This is why the sutras teach meditation on the foulness of the body...
.
If you are a common Mahāyāna practitioner, this is fine. This is not acceptable in Vajrayāna.


It's not acceptable in Mahayana either, as in emptiness nature, there is no such thing as pure or impure, so this idea is conceptual thinking and has to be overcome.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Karma Dondrup Tashi »

theanarchist wrote:... if you become judgmental, you feed them. The same way, celibacy with an attitude of "sex is dirty and evil" will not work.
Right but if your ethics are crap the base for your meditations will also be crap. If you begin with non-judgmentalism outside of equipoise the non-judgmentalism of equipoise won't be stable.
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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

Zhen Li wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Zhen Li wrote: This is why the sutras teach meditation on the foulness of the body...
.
If you are a common Mahāyāna practitioner, this is fine. This is not acceptable in Vajrayāna.
Of course.
I should say, it is also not acceptable once you get above the level of the very basics in both Hinayana and Mahayana as well.
theanarchist wrote:This is an antidote to counteract the idealisation of the body that come with attachment. An anti idealisation and attachment medicine, like an Aspirin is an anti headache medication. It's meant to remedy a wrong view, it's not meant to become a new wrong view itself.
Yup. That's why I said it is a training practice.

They exist for a reason, and we are talking about both the harms of certain habits and how to overcome them from the perspective of Dharma.
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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:
theanarchist wrote:... if you become judgmental, you feed them. The same way, celibacy with an attitude of "sex is dirty and evil" will not work.
Right but if your ethics are crap the base for your meditations will also be crap. If you begin with non-judgmentalism outside of equipoise the non-judgmentalism of equipoise won't be stable.
I really don't buy this idea that you are feeding your habits by judging them. Plenty of people who practice celibacy are still on the level where they benefit from such trainings.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:
theanarchist wrote:... if you become judgmental, you feed them. The same way, celibacy with an attitude of "sex is dirty and evil" will not work.
Right but if your ethics are crap the base for your meditations will also be crap. If you begin with non-judgmentalism outside of equipoise the non-judgmentalism of equipoise won't be stable.


Yes, but the ethics have to be based on the right assumptions. For example murdering someone is not bad because it's evil. It's bad because it harms yourself and another being. Deeds don't have inbuilt attributes in themselves, they are causing happiness or suffering or are neutral, that's all.
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Zhen Li
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

Judging a habit doesn't mean labeling it as inherently evil. It means evaluating the state of mind or deed, as well as its causes and motivations, for whether or not it is wholesome or unwholesome - which means being conducive to welfare and happiness or not.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Zhen Li wrote: I really don't buy this idea that you are feeding your habits by judging them..

You do. Because you start a war against your unwanted tendencies within your mind. That's a war you can't win.

You can not overcome negativity by rejecting it. Because by rejecting it you turn aggression against a part of your psyche.

As the Buddha said: You can not overcome aggression with aggression. Only love can overcome aggression.

You can suppress/repress those things for a while when you turn against them, but they will not go away.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by theanarchist »

Zhen Li wrote:Judging a habit doesn't mean labeling it as inherently evil. It means evaluating the state of mind or deed, as well as its causes and motivations, for whether or not it is wholesome or unwholesome - which means being conducive to welfare and happiness or not.


Again, your words about this only three days ago were very VERY different!


Zhen Li wrote:Dopamine is mind altering, and indulging in the causes of dysregulation in the brain's reward system is very damaging.

Alcohol is different not because of the result, which is the same for the reward system, but because we don't have a drive for alcohol prior to trying it. However, if you don't believe there is a way to overcome the sex drive, that's rejecting fairly basic aspects of the Dharma.

Sex is mentally and physically damaging, it's an incredibly filthy and disease prone activity, some of which can cause death. It also gives rise to birth, which is suffering. It also is a major source of desire and attachment and hence perpetuates dependent origination. This is not to say that there are not cleaner or safer ways of doing it.

I don't know if you are just uninformed, inexperienced in meditation and overcoming desires, or if you are trying to be as radically different from the Buddhist approach as possible.

Most nominal Buddhists don't actually practice. This is ashame. But if you give it a go you may find beneficial results.
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Re: The harms of Masturbation and Porn

Post by Zhen Li »

Overcoming one's habits through training techniques isn't suppression or repression.

And we are not talking about aversion, we are talking about seeing things in different ways. If you see attachment as leading to craving, you are not being averse to the attachment, you are seeing how it causally relates to something else.
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