Coarse language

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pemachophel
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Re: Coarse language

Post by pemachophel » Sun Feb 02, 2020 8:59 pm

I talked to my wife on our lunchtime walk and she agreed with me that the incidence of profanity, cursing, swearing, whatever you want to call it markedly escalated with us Boomers. She said her mother, grandmother, aunt, and even her grandfather never swore. Her father swore only when he was drunk and angry at the same time. My father and grandfather never swore, and my grandfather grew up in Hell's Kitchen and went to work when he was 12. Even when I worked in our family factory, I never heard my father and uncle swear. I didn't even know what swear words were until I went to an all boys school in 5th grade.

Now, in this dark age of conflict, in the final era of 500 [years],
The five poisons grow [ever] more violent in all sentient beings.
Recklessly, [we] indulge in the kleshas and the five poisons dominate [our mind-]streams.
At a time such as this, may [Your] compassion be [our] protection.
Great Compassionate One, [You] lead those with faith to the higher realms.
Orgyen Pema Jungnay to[ You we] pray.
Grant [Your] blessings that [all our] wishes be spontaneously accomplished.
Pema Chophel པདྨ་ཆོས་འཕེལ

Malcolm
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Malcolm » Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:03 pm

pemachophel wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 8:59 pm
I talked to my wife on our lunchtime walk and she agreed with me that the incidence of profanity, cursing, swearing, whatever you want to call it markedly escalated with us Boomers.
Yeah, I guess I don't agree. My experience is different than yours. My grandmother on my dad's side, and my grandfather on my mom's side, were both champion swearers.

Remember, "god damn" used to be a very heavy swear word, as was "Jesus Christ!" Tibetans swear by saying "dKon mchog gsum!", but they also have more colorful words.

And the 16th Karmapa swore all the time, being a Khampa.

tkp67
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Re: Coarse language

Post by tkp67 » Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:13 pm

In American media there has been a marked increase in vulgarity since the 80's although compared to some European/latin nations we might have been viewed as unreasonably conservative. My grandparent's generation did not curse at all. It was seen as a gravely offensive behavior.

I have seen the same words both bond and wound people based on timing and interpretation. Seems contexts matters as well.

Malcolm
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Malcolm » Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:19 pm

tkp67 wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:13 pm
My grandparent's generation did not curse at all. It was seen as a gravely offensive behavior.
You mean no one cursed at all in their generation? Well, the evidence firmly stands against this idea.

tkp67
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Re: Coarse language

Post by tkp67 » Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:25 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:19 pm
tkp67 wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:13 pm
My grandparent's generation did not curse at all. It was seen as a gravely offensive behavior.
You mean no one cursed at all in their generation? Well, the evidence firmly stands against this idea.
lol I should have worded that better but the whole of that generation I knew on both sides of the family carried themselves in such a way that this type of behavior was seen as abhorrent. A few dozen people if you include acquaintances.

My grandfather canceled HBO because it was too over the top and he died in 77'

They where an upright generation, at least the ones I was exposed to.

Malcolm
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Malcolm » Sun Feb 02, 2020 10:16 pm

tkp67 wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:25 pm


They where an upright generation, at least the ones I was exposed to.
And a lot of them swore like sailors and truck drivers.

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Virgo
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Virgo » Sun Feb 02, 2020 10:40 pm

Is swearing something that really warrants this much time in discussing?

Virgo

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Keith__
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Keith__ » Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:02 pm

Probably not. I'm grateful for the advice that's been given here. Thank you all.

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Virgo
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Virgo » Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:05 pm

Keith__ wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:02 pm
Probably not. I'm grateful for the advice that's been given here. Thank you all.
I any event, I think what you are doing is admirable Keith. I just don't understand why people are so easily offended by words. Words are only words, it's not something particularly harmful. To me it never made sense.

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Re: Coarse language

Post by Virgo » Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:33 am

Virgo wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 10:40 pm
Is swearing something that really warrants this much time in discussing?

Virgo
Good points have been raised by all, so I am certainly not trying to denigrate anyones contributions in this thread. I am just having a lot of difficulty with this one. I can't comprehend how foul language is connected with strong akusala. I kind of feel like I have been gaslighted here. I really don't think that foul language is very strong akushala. I think it is something minor. This thread is pretty frustrating. I think being strongly offended by the foul language is probably stronger akushala karma because it denotes an unecessary level of heightened aversion.

Virgo

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:12 am

Malcolm wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:19 pm
tkp67 wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:13 pm
My grandparent's generation did not curse at all. It was seen as a gravely offensive behavior.
You mean no one cursed at all in their generation? Well, the evidence firmly stands against this idea.
The people with the biggest pottymouths I've known (and I have a bit of one myself) have all been over 80 years old.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Keith__
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Keith__ » Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:06 am

Virgo wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:05 pm
I just don't understand why people are so easily offended by words.
This standard formula is found in lots of places in the Pali Canon:
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, and from idle chatter: This is called right speech.
Some folk find swearing objectionable, so to them it is abusive and divisive. As Right Speech is a factor in the Eightfold Path, it's something I would rather like to develop. Maybe swearing is fine and irrelevant to spiritual development, maybe it matters, I don't know. Regardless, I reckon there's more to gain and less to lose by trying to be more mindful of my use of words.
Last edited by Keith__ on Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:36 am

Keith__ wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:06 am
Virgo wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:05 pm
I just don't understand why people are so easily offended by words.
This standard formula is found in lots of places in the Pali Canon:
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, and from idle chatter: This is called right speech.
Some folk find swearing objectionable, so to them it is abusive and divisive. As Right Speech is a factor in the Eightfold Path, it's something I would rather like to develop. Maybe swearing is fine and irrelevant to spiritual development, maybe it matters, I don't know. Regardless, I reckon there's more to gain and less to lose by trying to be more mindful of my use of words.
Swearing only fits the criteria for abusive or divisive speech if it operates as such in context. So, to me following this precept would contain aspects of what is called "emotional intelligence" these days. That is, being able to read when your speech is harmful and when it is not - being that the precept covers external actions. Aside from this, one has to examine what is the effect of swearing on one's mindstream. It's not uniformly negative, but as I mentioned, we often do it when we feel frustrated/obstructed by something. in this way, it becomes a practice to gain awareness of one's conditioning.

One can be downright abusive with their speech and attitudes towards others without ever uttering a swear word, so again I feel that examining the inner reasons for swearing, as well as the effect on the mind is a big deal
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Re: Coarse language

Post by Malcolm » Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:38 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:12 am
Malcolm wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:19 pm
tkp67 wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:13 pm
My grandparent's generation did not curse at all. It was seen as a gravely offensive behavior.
You mean no one cursed at all in their generation? Well, the evidence firmly stands against this idea.
The people with the biggest pottymouths I've known (and I have a bit of one myself) have all been over 80 years old.
This shows a positive correlation between use of profanity and longevity. People who swear more are happier and less stressed.

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:44 am

Malcolm wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:38 am
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:12 am
Malcolm wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:19 pm


You mean no one cursed at all in their generation? Well, the evidence firmly stands against this idea.
The people with the biggest pottymouths I've known (and I have a bit of one myself) have all been over 80 years old.
This shows a positive correlation between use of profanity and longevity. People who swear more are happier and less stressed.
My in laws are Jewish, swearing is it not even weird in their particular cultural corner. I mean it's not overboard, but it's an expressive thing. I also grew up working class in a working class area...again, everyone swore.

This is one of those things that is mainly about one's culture. it's good to be mindful of other people's culture in this way. I work around mainly working class people who swear..it would actually affect my job negatively to make myself stand out by "taking a stand" against swearing. I don't swear around my older Dharma friends who I know are more reserved that way. In both cases I try to adjust my behavior based on who I am around, not to 'fit in' so much as to communicate on a similar wavelength. I am not sure I would avoid if it I simply thought someone was overly sensitive though, as I am not sure there is any particular benefit to them or myself.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Re: Coarse language

Post by Mantrik » Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:18 am

In the absence of any clearly objective definition of what comprises the sacred and the profane in terms of language, I'd dump the concepts as useless and simply try to avoid harmful speech. It's another can of worms of course these days, as you daren't call someone a 'lemon' in case it offends their fruitarian sensibilities as 'hate speech'.

The UK is rich with a vocabulary of swearing, and it is all a matter of what is acceptable where and to whom. When I worked on building sites there very few people could manage a sentence without dropping an f-bomb or calling someone a sexual organ. In lecturing amongst academics, it was less frequent but not much more creative.

It's a great emotional outlet and recommended greatly as acute pain relief.

What is missing is really creative foulness, the ability to string together long and expressive phrases, a linguistic skill we really need to introduce to our youth.

They can barely get through a sentence without 'like', which is a tediously raddled excrescence of redundant verbiage, about as much use as a pus-seeping gangrenous penile carbuncle. ;)
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Simon E.
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Simon E. » Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:54 am

All of this... :good:
I asked for a definition, but the member who first used the word “profanity” in the thread did not proffer a definition.
He/she possibly thought it was self explanatory.
Which it isnt. Not on a Buddhist forum. It’s a term that has meaning in a Theistic context in contrast to “ sacred”....
“You don’t know it. You just know about it. That is not the same thing.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche to me.

tkp67
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Re: Coarse language

Post by tkp67 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:56 am

Malcolm wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:38 am
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:12 am
Malcolm wrote:
Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:19 pm


You mean no one cursed at all in their generation? Well, the evidence firmly stands against this idea.
The people with the biggest pottymouths I've known (and I have a bit of one myself) have all been over 80 years old.
This shows a positive correlation between use of profanity and longevity. People who swear more are happier and less stressed.
my grandmother was 105 when she passed ... never cursed ... ever

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Ayu
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Re: Coarse language

Post by Ayu » Mon Feb 03, 2020 1:07 pm

I don't really umderstand the point in this discussion (as member, not as mod).

There are ten unwholesome deeds defined in Tibetan buddhism as well. Four of them are about speech. One of them is called 'coarse speech'. Defined in sutra and lam rim.
So, in buddhist terms, how can violent speech be not an issue? Especially when it doesn't come from an enlightened being but an ordinary person.
And how should speech be not affecting? I don't understand. Viewed from my experiences, it makes no sense.

If language had no effect we don't need to use it at all.
For the benefit and ease of all sentient beings. :heart:

tkp67
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Re: Coarse language

Post by tkp67 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 1:48 pm

Ayu,

I think it reveals a conundrum of the degenerate age. As I see it many of us are born into these behaviors and traits as simple norms. The reaction of someone from that background would not be the same as someone who has not. That said I have watched this dynamic used to force and manipulate people.

As someone with a trauma disorder I would wake in the middle of the night cursing and screaming and it in turn traumatized me children. I took medicine, saw doctors and still worked towards accumulating merit but the causation was the same. It happened without my active intent or desire.

The challenges didn't stop there. It mind was really damaged and I had little control over verbal impulse. It marginalized my life and the life of others. At some point I had to take ownership without self anger or other negative emotions which are a hallmark of one of my disorders.

By seeking a compassionate solution for my family's suffering I realized I had to be compassionate in regards to my own condition. I didn't put it there and it was ok and in this context I could be mindful of it without emotional distress.

On a side note there is another side. For example I can also present science that says cursing is honest.

Either way I think mindfulness regarding regarding the dynamics is helpful. I do believe understanding the way something like language expressed throughout the whole of the population can lead to a more skillful use of said language.

In this conversation I have experienced both ends of the pool.

Regards

:anjali:

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