The Great Abortion Debate

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Malcolm
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Malcolm » Wed Mar 25, 2020 9:50 pm

Presto Kensho wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 6:04 pm
The Buddha's teachings for both monastics and laypeople forbid abortion as the taking of an innocent human life:

++++++++++++++++++++

So now we have the Buddha’s clear instructions on this and how serious of an offense it is.
https://essenceofbuddhism.wordpress.com ... -abortion/

Having said this, why should someone who believes in traditional Buddhist teachings be forced to pay for an abortion through their tax dollars?
It is not so clear. While it is true that if a monk causes an abortion after the 19th week, it is a parajika, prior to the 19th week it is not.

As far as paying for abortions. It is interesting you mention abortion, but not war.

The fact is, that your belief that abortion is wrong is only a belief, and it is not shared by others.

We do not pay taxes based on what personally believe. I don't like the fact that Christians get massive federal subsidies for their charter schools, but our taxes get spent on that too.

Basically, you are entitled to believe in whatever you like, but you are not entitled to force your religious beliefs on others. It is a violation of the establishment clause of the first amendment to do so.

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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:31 pm

Some argue that to abort a life interferes with the ripening of the karma of one about to take rebirth.
But one would also have to concede that such interruption is also the result of the karma of the one taking rebirth.
Last edited by PadmaVonSamba on Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Minobu
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Minobu » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:34 pm

So it all comes down to what men have written and deemed law .''


this guy had something to say about the whole paradigm.


You Know Who I Am
Leonard Cohen



I cannot follow you, my love,
You cannot follow me.
I am the distance you put between
All of the moments that we will be.
You know who I am,
You've stared at the sun,
Well I am the one who loves
Changing from nothing to one.
Sometimes I need you naked,
Sometimes I need you wild,
I need you to carry my children in
And I need you to kill a child.
You know who I am
If you should ever track me down
I will surrender there
And I will leave with you one…




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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:36 pm

“If one destroys an embryo inside a woman by making her take poison, one is guilty of 2 sins – the act [of killing] and its associated elements“
Buddhism doesn’t do “sins”.
Since this quote is an English language translation of a Chinese translation from Sanskrit, I’d be interested in seeing the original wording interpreted by someone who is a reader of Sanskrit.

Actions of body, speech, and mind are either conducive to the cessation of suffering, or they aren’t. They carry no weight on their own, but must be applied to the various conditions which arise.

Yes, of course it is better to not cause injury to any living being or to encourage it. If one has taken those precepts, as my teacher pointed out during a question & answer session regarding precepts, then having an abortion is regarded as a violation of those precepts. But this doesn’t mean those precepts apply to everyone, which is why people should think heavily before taking lay precepts, and definitely before being ordained. I can certainly support a person’s right to choose abortion without urging them to have one.

Anyway, legal abortions aren’t done by giving the woman poison (European belladonna). There is no “heartbeat at the moment of conception”.

And if killing living things was never allowed, I’m not sure how we could permit vaccines for the Coronavirus!!
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PeterC
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by PeterC » Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:38 am

Presto Kensho wrote:
Fri Mar 20, 2020 3:06 am
Malcolm wrote:
Fri Mar 20, 2020 2:50 am
Whether abortion is legal or not, women will continue to seek abortions. Where it is outlawed, or where access to abortion is restricted, women’s lives are placed in danger. So, one either chooses to understand that women need to be able to make this choice on their own, and wrestle with their own conscience, or keep dying because of illegal and botched abortions performed in back ally clinics. It’s more of a public health issue than anything else. And all arguments against abortion are religious in origin, none are based in science.
If all you want is for the government to stay out of abortion, why should taxpayers fund abortion through all nine months of pregnancy, like all the major 2020 Democratic presidential candidates propose? I didn't have doubts about the Democratic Party until recently, when it became the official position to support repealing the Hyde amendment.
This comment went unanswered, but it's worth picking up on, because it's completely wrong.

It is not the position of any major democratic presidential candidate to have taxpayers fund *all* abortions through all nine months of pregnancy, because that would be against the settled law of the land. There are exceptions to this, notably around situations where the health of the mother is endangered. The Hyde amendment prohibits use of federal funds to pay for abortions except for in situations where the pregnancy is a result of incest or rape, or it endangers the health of the mother. (The exact terms vary from time to time depending on exactly what language is re-enacted.) And if a government wishes not to re-enact the Hyde amendment, that's not necessarily wrong. The government of the US is supposed to be a secular government. The arguments presented against the use of abortion are generally religious arguments. From time to time people try to re-frame them as secular moral arguments, but this is almost always done in bad faith, as the people making those arguments had previously made religions arguments against it.

Now from a purely secular perspective, there's a good argument for allowing women access to abortion. A ton of evidence shows that (a) from a cost-benefit perspective, it improves women's lives and livelihoods; and (b) making abortion illegal just results in women seeking more dangerous, illegal abortions. Moreover (c) the opponents of abortion also fight tooth and nail to prevent any federal or state money being spent on the children once they're born, which again shows that they're discussing in bad faith when they claim that this is about the welfare of the children and the health of the mother, and (d) there is a good argument that the ultimate moral responsibility rests with the woman.

I also don't believe for a minute that you "didn't have doubts about the Democratic Party until recently". Please take your misleading talking points elsewhere.

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Grigoris
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 26, 2020 11:40 am

Presto Kensho wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 6:04 pm
Having said this, why should someone who believes in traditional Buddhist teachings be forced to pay for an abortion through their tax dollars?
For the same reason you are forced to pay for a medical intervention to remove any other group of cells from a human body.
"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."
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tkp67
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by tkp67 » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:25 pm

Perhaps the answer isn't as simple as getting all minds to perceive the value of life from the same point of view. I don't see why that need be contested. Rather if we accept the variety then the right to choose based on that variety puts a premium on personal choice. I imagine if women had more choice and less pressure regarding what choice they make, a greater percentages of best outcomes will occur for all life.

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Queequeg
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Queequeg » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:47 pm

I suspect most of the participants in the thread are men... just sayin.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
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Minobu
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Minobu » Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:07 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:47 pm
I suspect most of the participants in the thread are men... just sayin.
Most are claiming to follow Buddhist ideals.

Some treat their goldfish with more respect than they do with human life.

And whats with this collection of cells bullshit. Lets pretend that that's all they are..

It's like let's pretend that just because those cells appear to the human eye under microscope as just a bunch of cells, we shall ignore the DNA , and ignore the fact that they are part of our human development.

People who dismiss the reality of the situation and just refer to it as a bunch of cells is just wrong and misleading.

How do people choose to ignore any human connection with the first four cells of progression to a fully formed human being.

The mind is there , the DNA is there and the Karma is there. What more do you want.

Buddhist are expected to protect and foster life , not figure out angles to work around destroying life.

If you are a woman and are wanting to abort, in some societies you are given the safe option.
If you choose , realize you are making the choice for another sentient being.

Asd a man i would always support any one i got pregnant , for life...been there done that ...If the woman wants an abortion in the end it is her body and her choice.

I would take the time to explain to her that she is deciding to do with the human life growing in her womb...her womb.

with half my DNA and half her human DNA.

again laws are man made.. laws were made at one time that as lo9ng as you planted a flag on some heathen's land all the resource are yours because you will teach them the bible and they shall be saved by Christ and should be grateful.

Even some European countries made laws that allowed for human life to become slaves...people in North America had pieces of paper that declared they owned this human being..were those laws correct. People believed they were justified. Even in Canada we had slave owners.

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Minobu
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Minobu » Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:12 pm

as a side note, it occurs to me that people will adjust their beliefs for a political party.

Is it because you are a democrat you will say anything to protect abortion and take away any human element to the group of cells you want flushed.

Is it because you are a republican that at any cost you will not allow a woman to have an abortion.

just saying.

i find it hilarious when i see so called buddhists take political sides, when discussing topics such as this....

hypocrisy abounds!

edit..my opinion

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justsit
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by justsit » Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:28 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:47 pm
I suspect most of the participants in the thread are men... just sayin.
Yes, I've often wondered how many men - Buddhist or not - who are so concerned about their tax dollars and "Human life" will offer to raise an unwanted child in order to prevent an abortion?

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Minobu
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Minobu » Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:17 pm

justsit wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:28 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:47 pm
I suspect most of the participants in the thread are men... just sayin.
Yes, I've often wondered how many men - Buddhist or not - who are so concerned about their tax dollars and "Human life" will offer to raise an unwanted child in order to prevent an abortion?
thank you for being a good person who thinks with compassion.

I realize some woman just need to have it done, rape or incest and what not. They feel the child will ruin their life.

i'm glad i'm a man, in this instance and does not have to suffer the consequence of abortion.

Or do we? It's a lot to ask of a woman...my stance on it that is...

Are there Karmic breaks..like lets give them a break and let them terminate human life.

Karma.
then of course karma is intent...so if you bring up a child and teach them that abortion is a good thing to do , and your government makes it clear it's ok ...well there goes the bad intent out the window.

I look to the masters for advice. real advice.

where is it...people twist buddhist ideals to suit their private agendas.

hypocrisy and honesty are at odds with each here.

and to be honest i cannot make an honest judgement on if i was a woman and was raped by my father what would i do.
'cause i'm not a woman.

I knew a woman who had an abortion, she did it for financial reasons, and continued living with the father of the aborted fetus.

I never mentioned anything i posted here, but chanted hours for her life. I offered her my time and chanting without telling her .

The topic is fertile for growth in areas not even related to abortion.

thinking about life and what we are and what we do to each other is always a good thing.

As the Ninth Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa taught us, thinking about things is meditation.

Malcolm
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Malcolm » Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:10 pm

Minobu wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:07 pm

again laws are man made.. laws were made at one time that as lo9ng as you planted a flag on some heathen's land all the resource are yours because you will teach them the bible and they shall be saved by Christ and should be grateful.
Right, and we don't want your religious opinions being forced on women's bodies. That's all.

No one here is arguing for abortion. We are arguing that is just as wrong to impose Buddhist beliefs on non-buddhists as it is to impose Christian beliefs on non-christians.

Those who support a woman's right to choose are not imposing beliefs on anyone, since any woman who believes abortion is wrong is free to choose not to have an abortion should they do not want one.

It's pretty simple and has nothing with what the Buddha may or may not have said on the issue.

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:16 pm

PeterC wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:38 am
Presto Kensho wrote:
Fri Mar 20, 2020 3:06 am
Malcolm wrote:
Fri Mar 20, 2020 2:50 am
Whether abortion is legal or not, women will continue to seek abortions. Where it is outlawed, or where access to abortion is restricted, women’s lives are placed in danger. So, one either chooses to understand that women need to be able to make this choice on their own, and wrestle with their own conscience, or keep dying because of illegal and botched abortions performed in back ally clinics. It’s more of a public health issue than anything else. And all arguments against abortion are religious in origin, none are based in science.
If all you want is for the government to stay out of abortion, why should taxpayers fund abortion through all nine months of pregnancy, like all the major 2020 Democratic presidential candidates propose? I didn't have doubts about the Democratic Party until recently, when it became the official position to support repealing the Hyde amendment.
This comment went unanswered, but it's worth picking up on, because it's completely wrong.

It is not the position of any major democratic presidential candidate to have taxpayers fund *all* abortions through all nine months of pregnancy, because that would be against the settled law of the land. There are exceptions to this, notably around situations where the health of the mother is endangered. The Hyde amendment prohibits use of federal funds to pay for abortions except for in situations where the pregnancy is a result of incest or rape, or it endangers the health of the mother. (The exact terms vary from time to time depending on exactly what language is re-enacted.) And if a government wishes not to re-enact the Hyde amendment, that's not necessarily wrong. The government of the US is supposed to be a secular government. The arguments presented against the use of abortion are generally religious arguments. From time to time people try to re-frame them as secular moral arguments, but this is almost always done in bad faith, as the people making those arguments had previously made religions arguments against it.

Now from a purely secular perspective, there's a good argument for allowing women access to abortion. A ton of evidence shows that (a) from a cost-benefit perspective, it improves women's lives and livelihoods; and (b) making abortion illegal just results in women seeking more dangerous, illegal abortions. Moreover (c) the opponents of abortion also fight tooth and nail to prevent any federal or state money being spent on the children once they're born, which again shows that they're discussing in bad faith when they claim that this is about the welfare of the children and the health of the mother, and (d) there is a good argument that the ultimate moral responsibility rests with the woman.

I also don't believe for a minute that you "didn't have doubts about the Democratic Party until recently". Please take your misleading talking points elsewhere.
Worth noting here, generally US opponents of abortion also oppose the things that would make abortion less common. Strong social welfare systems and public education, including education on contraception. This isn’t true across the board, but I’ve found it to be generally accurate.
"...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."

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Minobu
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Minobu » Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:39 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:10 pm
Minobu wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:07 pm

again laws are man made.. laws were made at one time that as lo9ng as you planted a flag on some heathen's land all the resource are yours because you will teach them the bible and they shall be saved by Christ and should be grateful.
Right, and we don't want your religious opinions being forced on women's bodies. That's all.

No one here is arguing for abortion. We are arguing that is just as wrong to impose Buddhist beliefs on non-buddhists as it is to impose Christian beliefs on non-christians.

Those who support a woman's right to choose are not imposing beliefs on anyone, since any woman who believes abortion is wrong is free to choose not to have an abortion should they do not want one.

It's pretty simple and has nothing with what the Buddha may or may not have said on the issue.
you see this is where we are not on the same page.
you look to Buddhism as some religion.
I look it at it as reality.

I don't write novels or try to make money from Buddhism. Do you?

But it's not a religion it's reality.

The earth's evolutionary process is part and parcel to Lord Sakyamuni's Buddhahood.

you are turning Buddhism into something it isn't.

So this is malcolm's narrative:
Buddhism is a religion and malcolm wishes to twist it to his political needs.

you are showing your true colors here, i thank the Buddha for that.

Malcolm
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Malcolm » Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:44 pm

Minobu wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:39 pm

you look to Buddhism as some religion.

I recognize that to those who are not Buddhists, Buddhism is just another religion. Unlike you, I do not want to force my beliefs on others who do not share those same beliefs.

Have some humility, and recognize that you are not omniscient and do not know what is best for everyone.

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Grigoris
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:29 pm

Minobu wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:07 pm
And whats with this collection of cells bullshit. Lets pretend that that's all they are..
Until an embryo is capable of independent existence, it is no different to any other collection of cells in the body (like a cancer or an organ, for example).

Even you and I are nothing other than a collection of cells dependent on a million different factors for our continued existence (including people choosing whether we live or die).

As for being the only true (Scottish) Buddhist here... One would think that if one is a Buddhist, then they would put aside their personal opinions and sentimentality, and consider the teachings in the Vianaya as the ultimate guide. Unless of course (for you) Buddhism is whatever fits your particular present world view.

But I can understand all the confusion, it is a complicated matter after all, so here is a simple flow chart for all of us here to understand:



pro choice.jpg
pro choice.jpg (71.84 KiB) Viewed 502 times
Last edited by Grigoris on Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"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

Malcolm
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Malcolm » Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:31 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:29 pm
pro choice.jpg
:applause:

madhusudan
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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by madhusudan » Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:20 pm

"Is the fetus in your uterus?" deliberately frames the debate in language taking a particular side while ignoring that this is the entire crux of the issue.

It's as sincere as asking, "Are you the mother blessed with this child?"

Is the entity merely a collection of cells or a human life? When exactly does life begin?

Since it is FACT that this in contention. and the consequences are of the utmost importance, it makes sense to act in an overabundance of caution.
This is my reasoning for opposing abortion.

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Re: The Great Abortion Debate

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:22 pm

Opposing abortion personally and politically are two different animals. Especially if one lives in the US. The question is not simply opposition to abortion, but whether one supports policies which ultimately lessen the need for it. This being the case, it's easy to see that it is quite a grey area once we depart from simply opposing the act on a personal level.
"...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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