a confession

A forum for discussion of Buddhist ethics.
floatingbubbles07
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a confession

Post by floatingbubbles07 »

I have something I'd like y'all to know. Call me a whore, an unholy person, or any insult you may think of if you want. All I want now is to get this off my shoulders and to get some answers.

There was this thing I read about how indulging your carnal lust in a sangharama is a deadly sin that will send one to hell. Well, I wanted to tell you all that I did just this, or what I think of as just this as a 15 year old.

I masturbated in a temple, on a monks chair, in front of Buddha statues, while no one was watching. I remember climaxing many times. I remember feeling satisfied at the end since I knew it was wrong, but I wanted to see what I could get away with by doing that inside a temple.

After looking it up online and finding out that it was a deadly sin a couple years later, I started to feel really guilty. I wish I could turn back time and not have done that. I think as long as I know that I've done this in the past and that it may bring me to hell, I'll always have scrupulosity (religious) OCD. I want to redeem myself, I want to get rid of this OCD once and for all. Because this OCD has made my life living hell, and I don't even want to describe what I had to go through with it. I just want this all to be over.

I don't really know what I'm asking for, nor do I really know the purpose of me posting this, but you can call me whatever you want. I just need some advice I guess. How is one supposed to live knowing that they're going to hell after they die? Is there anything I can do to redeem myself and maybe not be reborn in hell?
Pero
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Re: a confession

Post by Pero »

Not sure if this is real or not haha but while disrespectful you're not going to hell for this. To do that you'd have to do one of the following:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anantarika-karma wrote: Intentionally murdering one's father.
Intentionally murdering one's mother.
Killing an Arhat (fully enlightened being).
Shedding the blood of a Buddha.
Creating a schism within the Sangha, the community of Buddhist monks, nuns and pariṣā who try to attain enlightenment.
Although many individuals in this age appear to be merely indulging their worldly desires, one does not have the capacity to judge them, so it is best to train in pure vision.
- Shabkar
floatingbubbles07
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Re: a confession

Post by floatingbubbles07 »

I found this.....
The Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha then addressed the Holy Mother, saying, "In southern Jambudvipa, the retribution for various sins is as follows: If someone should fail to fulfill his filial duty toward his parents or, at worst, kill or harm them, he will fall into Avici Hell, where he will remain for thousands of myriads of millions of kalpas without a date for release. If someone should shed the blood of a Buddha, ridicule the Three Jewels or fail to respect the sutras, he, also, will fall into Avici Hell, where he will remain for thousands of myriads of millions of kalpas without a date for release. If someone should encroach upon or steal the property of some Buddhist establishment, slander bhiksus or bhiksunis, indulge his carnal lust in a sangharama, or kill or harm others, then he or she will fall into Avici Hell and remain there for thousands of myriads of millions of kalpas without a date for release.
cjdevries
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Re: a confession

Post by cjdevries »

One possibility is praying to a Buddha or Bodhisattva for purification, and then visualizing them and really imagining receiving their blessings. Another option is penance; sort of like karma yoga; where you actually verbally or mentally say "I am doing this to atone for this specific action". One important note is that purification and penance are two different things. Penance will help to lessen the effect of the karma I believe, but it will not eradicate the karma. Proper purification will eradicate the karma. Purification is the most important because without it the karma will still have some effect. However, I have read Tulku Thondup saying that doing penance is a valid method for overcoming past karmas. You just have to say something like "I am doing this as penance for this past action". It helps if you visualize a source of blessings such as Avalokiteshvara or Tara, and really feel that they are hearing your prayer and they are imbuing it with their blessings and energy to purify your wrongdoing. So, if it was me, I would focus on purification, then penance; additionally, I would work on accumulating merit by doing some other unselfish deeds, basically karma yoga, service work of some kind. For example, I work on taking care of my household chores and we meet as a household and contribute together on different projects as a team; maybe we tend the garden together, etc. so I feel like I'm doing something for a community. It helps. Anything where we are contributing to a greater cause is immensely purifying. Also, Tulku Thondup has a great book about planting blessings for rebirth in Sukhavati.
Last edited by cjdevries on Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Please call me by my true names so I can wake up; so the door of my heart can be left open: the door of compassion." -Thich Nhat Hanh
Fortyeightvows
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Re: a confession

Post by Fortyeightvows »

I think you should make some donations to that temple
floatingbubbles07
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Re: a confession

Post by floatingbubbles07 »

cjdevries wrote: Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:05 pm So, if it was me, I would focus on purification, then penance; additionally, I would work on accumulating merit by doing some other unselfish deeds, basically karma yoga, service work of some kind.
How exactly do you do purification and penance?
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Losal Samten
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Re: a confession

Post by Losal Samten »

floatingbubbles07 wrote: Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:13 pmHow exactly do you do purification and penance?
Three Heaps Sutra and the 35 Confessional Buddhas is the standard Mahayana purification practice.
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
ཨཱོཾ་མ་ཏྲི་མུ་ཡེ་སལེ་འདུ།།
Fortyeightvows
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Re: a confession

Post by Fortyeightvows »

floatingbubbles07 wrote: Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:13 pmHow exactly do you do purification and penance?
Generally there are four parts to purfication & penance

1. refuge
2. regret doing it
3. do something to make up for it
4. try to not do it again

So in this case, you made a certain type of connection to temple, so now since you have that connection to the temple, you want to make sure it is a good connection. Do something good to make up for it- to even it out.
cjdevries
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Re: a confession

Post by cjdevries »

Tulku Thondup has instructions in his book Peaceful Death, Joyful Rebirth. Basically, to do penance, you set out to perform a beneficial action such as donating to a charity or doing service work like helping someone and before you go to do it, you say outloud or silently "I am doing this as penance for ___ specific action". When you say this, make sure that you really feel the presence or visualize an enlightened being such as Tara or Kwan Yin. You want an enlightened being to hear you and bless you in your penance. I believe that penance will lessen the power of the negativity. Tulku Thondup says it's a good method and he encourages it. Personally, I make tsa tsas as penance for some specific negative deeds and before I make them I really feel that I am atoning fro my wrongdoings by doing something positive. I'm far from an expert on purification. I would probably ask someone more experienced, because there are many methods. Or check out Tulku Thondup's book. He provides many methods of purification in his book Peaceful Death, Joyful Rebirth. One method I have used is visualizing Tara above me and praying for purification, imagining her light filling me and cleansing out all past karmas and wrongdoings and then really feeling that I am purified. This is a method that I believe anyone can do; from my understanding there is no need for initiations for the basic practice of visualizing the deity and imagining the light or nectar purifying you. But if you have OCD, that method might be more difficult. I am speaking from experience; I have a form of OCD, intrusive thoughts, and I have a very hard time visualizing dieties especially certain ones. Thankfully, there are many methods of purification.
"Please call me by my true names so I can wake up; so the door of my heart can be left open: the door of compassion." -Thich Nhat Hanh
cjdevries
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Re: a confession

Post by cjdevries »

Other traditions have different methods of purification too. Don't try this unless you are working with a highly trained medicine man or shaman from a reputable tradition, but I went to a highly regarded South African Sangoma who gave me homework for purification. He did a divination, gave me some blessed medicine and then said go home and write down every wrong action you can think of on a sheet of paper. Go to the pier or a cliff and throw throw the paper over the side imagining that you are cleansed of all of these actions. He said that his spirit guides would watch me and they would actually cleanse the wrong actions from my consciousness if I did the homework properly. That is just an idea of what is out there, but obviously you have to find someone who is highly skilled and is working with very good spirit guides. This shaman I went to had a very high vibration and he actually visited me in my dream the night before the divination.
"Please call me by my true names so I can wake up; so the door of my heart can be left open: the door of compassion." -Thich Nhat Hanh
cjdevries
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Re: a confession

Post by cjdevries »

Other options for purification are visiting holy places and making prayers for purification; you can also make others prayers such as may I be happy, fulfilled, overcome all my obstacles and wrongdoings, and quickly find enlightenment. Some places have such high vibration that your prayers have a good chance of being answered. One of my Buddhist teachers says it is important for prayers to be said out loud not just silently because it has more power if you use your speech. Plus, the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas need to hear you for the best effect to be had. In order for that to happen, it's good to visualize or imagine that a Buddha or Bodhisattva is close to you when you make prayers.

There are even places you can visit where it is purported for wishes to come true, such as Mount Kailash. I know the holy mountain Aranachula has had a lot of divine happenings around it for centuries. It might be one of those special places where wishes are said to come true, but I don't know. I definitely know verified stories of wishes that come true on Mt. Kailash. There are many sacred places, but it might take an expensive pilgrimage to get to many of them. Thankfully, many Buddhist masters have been building stupas in various parts of the world and these are more accessible. Miraculous events happen around stupas and prayers will be answered there too. Also, one Buddhist master said that all those who viewed a particular relics exhibit would have their sins forgiven.

I think one option is to go to a stupa and strongly pray to a Buddha that these wrongdoings may be forgiven. I think it may also work to find a picture of a stupa and make prayers in front of it, but it may not be as effective and you'd want to ask a teacher before you try it.
"Please call me by my true names so I can wake up; so the door of my heart can be left open: the door of compassion." -Thich Nhat Hanh
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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: a confession

Post by PadmaVonSamba »

Fortyeightvows wrote: Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:09 pm I think you should make some donations to that temple
Or to a sperm bank instead
:jumping:
Be kindness
cjdevries
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Re: a confession

Post by cjdevries »

Here is a website with a list of all the stupas in the U.S.: https://kscmiami.wordpress.com/current-u-s-stupas/

Also, I read somewhere today that making tsa tsas is thought to be an excellent method to purify the effect of harmful actions, obscurations, and broken vows or commitments. I make them every day and I find it to be a relaxing practice.
"Please call me by my true names so I can wake up; so the door of my heart can be left open: the door of compassion." -Thich Nhat Hanh
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DNS
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Re: a confession

Post by DNS »

Lucky for you, apparently there were no cameras in the area. Most temples and houses of worship have cameras for security. You could have been charged with at least a misdemeanor, vandalizing property.

Or worse, what if someone got sexually assaulted in that area and then the police, judge, and jury would have "DNA evidence" that you did the assault, even though you did not do it (and end up in prison for a long time).

As suggested by others, giving funds to the temple sounds like a good idea. It would be a sort of restitution and making merit.
pemachophel
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Re: a confession

Post by pemachophel »

Pero,

The five sins of immediate retribution that you list are the sins that take you immediately to hell when you die without passing through the bardo or taking another life in-between. There are plenty of demeritorious actions beyond these five that can take you to hell. However, it is only these five that take you immediately to hell. But, not to worry, there are a number of different mantra that, when recited with the Four Powers (of confession and purification) can eliminate even the karma of the five sins of immediate retribution.
Pema Chophel པདྨ་ཆོས་འཕེལ
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TharpaChodron
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Re: a confession

Post by TharpaChodron »

Sounds like this compulsion to do this was maybe part of your OCD symptoms, feeling compelled to do something that you knew was wrong. So, even as much as you do penance also realize that you may have your illness which is not a choice partially at fault, so be kind to yourself. But, umm, don’t do it again either. ;)
Malcolm
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Re: a confession

Post by Malcolm »

pemachophel wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 8:12 pm Pero,

The five sins of immediate retribution that you list are the sins that take you immediately to hell when you die without passing through the bardo or taking another life in-between. There are plenty of demeritorious actions beyond these five that can take you to hell. However, it is only these five that take you immediately to hell. But, not to worry, there are a number of different mantra that, when recited with the Four Powers (of confession and purification) can eliminate even the karma of the five sins of immediate retribution.
Also practicing dzogchen bypasses these.
Charlie123
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Re: a confession

Post by Charlie123 »

floatingbubbles07 wrote: Fri Aug 07, 2020 8:35 pm I have something I'd like y'all to know. Call me a whore, an unholy person, or any insult you may think of if you want. All I want now is to get this off my shoulders and to get some answers.

There was this thing I read about how indulging your carnal lust in a sangharama is a deadly sin that will send one to hell. Well, I wanted to tell you all that I did just this, or what I think of as just this as a 15 year old.

I masturbated in a temple, on a monks chair, in front of Buddha statues, while no one was watching. I remember climaxing many times. I remember feeling satisfied at the end since I knew it was wrong, but I wanted to see what I could get away with by doing that inside a temple.

After looking it up online and finding out that it was a deadly sin a couple years later, I started to feel really guilty. I wish I could turn back time and not have done that. I think as long as I know that I've done this in the past and that it may bring me to hell, I'll always have scrupulosity (religious) OCD. I want to redeem myself, I want to get rid of this OCD once and for all. Because this OCD has made my life living hell, and I don't even want to describe what I had to go through with it. I just want this all to be over.

I don't really know what I'm asking for, nor do I really know the purpose of me posting this, but you can call me whatever you want. I just need some advice I guess. How is one supposed to live knowing that they're going to hell after they die? Is there anything I can do to redeem myself and maybe not be reborn in hell?
Hi,

I also have OCD. It certainly does make spiritual practice and life in general much more difficult than it needs to be.

Really, I'm sorry you are going through this; I have had my fair share of hellish OCD experiences and can relate. How are you doing now?
floatingbubbles07
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Re: a confession

Post by floatingbubbles07 »

How are you doing now?
I'm on medications right now and that's made things somewhat better, but I still think that I'm going to hell every single day. I feel so guilty for what I did back then and I really wish I hadn't done it. I just wish there was a way I could turn back time. I hope you're doing well, though. I understand first hand that OCD is a real pain and I wouldn't wish what I've gone through on anyone.
Charlie123
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Re: a confession

Post by Charlie123 »

floatingbubbles07 wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 7:26 pm
How are you doing now?
I'm on medications right now and that's made things somewhat better, but I still think that I'm going to hell every single day. I feel so guilty for what I did back then and I really wish I hadn't done it. I just wish there was a way I could turn back time. I hope you're doing well, though. I understand first hand that OCD is a real pain and I wouldn't wish what I've gone through on anyone.
Yeah, there is no real “cure”. For me, I think it is good to just take it one day at a time, and to do my best.

If you make effort consistently , you might be able to eventually let all that bullshit go.
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