Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Casual conversation between friends. Anything goes (almost).
Malcolm
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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:42 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:36 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:26 pm
Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 1:52 am
From the reading I've done and the few practicing Buddhists I know, I would gather that Buddhism leans to the right socially/politically...
Um, no, this is a misconception. A conservative would be very unhappy with Madhyamaka, for example, since Madhyamaka scholars ridicule monarchy, conservatives will not find this comfortable.

Also, Nāgārjuna, for example, recommends that sovereigns pardon criminals, abolish death sentences for capital crimes, provide universal healthcare and social services, etc.

Most Buddhists I know personally oppose abortion, since the Buddhist theory of conception means that a zygote is a sentient being. However, most Western Buddhists understand that all arguments against abortion are fundamentally religious arguments, and therefor, understand the necessity of not legislating religious values into law.
Well said.

Following up on Nagarjuna's Ratnavali his advice to a sovereign. Those policy recommendations, I think, resonate most closely with many contemporary progressive agendas. If I were to summarize, its a recommendation to a sovereign to rule with deep, profound kindness.
Exactly.

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Queequeg
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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Queequeg » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:50 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:40 pm
On the weak mindedness of Trump supporters:

“Trump supporters are highly suggestible. They believe whatever they are indoctrinated to believe.”

“The problem is, as has been demonstrated time and again, that for Trump, and for Trump supporters, facts don't matter.”

Hate:

“Maybe they could ban his immigration back into the USA on the grounds that he is making the trip to meet international terrorists”

“From political view, he is the MOST stupid politician I ever heard of.”

I see some hate brought forth on this forum, “Right now, he's bringing so much hate to the world, it's incredible.”

The search function doesn’t really work that well but I found these quotes within a few minutes. I don’t see the need to continue quote mining and I doubt I’m the first person to point out the bias on this forum. I understand the Mod’s have to approve each post but do they need to personally comment on each post they approve? Do you see how that sets up the direction of the convo?

Anyway, thanks. I wasn't trying to cause a fight or stir the pot just expressing my opinion and my first impressions as a new poster.

Stay blessed.
1. Mods do not weigh approval of all posts. Only the posts of New Users and Moderated Users, the latter of whom have demonstrated an inability to abide by the forum rules. viewtopic.php?f=109&t=30556 Please review the Terms of Service if you have questions about the moderation of this site.

2. I think you may suffer from a confirmation bias. We have conservatives members of this community who use comparable language to describe the progressives on this board. Its true, the overall political weight of this board falls on the left side of the political spectrum. The rabid rightys tend to get themselves suspended and/or banned when their racist, homophobic, misogynist etc. rhetoric starts slipping out, aside from being met with vigorous critique, some of which does end up in the gutter, this still being the internet and all.
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.
-Ayacana Sutta

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Blackthorne » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:57 pm

Well, I'm not a rabid righty, :twothumbsup:

This was just a topic that grew out of my reading of recent posts. It was not me seeking to confirm my bias but to see what Buddhism is all about. I appreciate your irenic responses to my questions and your patience.

Blackthorne

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Simon E. » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:58 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:40 pm
On the weak mindedness of Trump supporters:

“Trump supporters are highly suggestible. They believe whatever they are indoctrinated to believe.”

“The problem is, as has been demonstrated time and again, that for Trump, and for Trump supporters, facts don't matter.”

Hate:

“Maybe they could ban his immigration back into the USA on the grounds that he is making the trip to meet international terrorists”

“From political view, he is the MOST stupid politician I ever heard of.”

I see some hate brought forth on this forum, “Right now, he's bringing so much hate to the world, it's incredible.”

The search function doesn’t really work that well but I found these quotes within a few minutes. I don’t see the need to continue quote mining and I doubt I’m the first person to point out the bias on this forum. I understand the Mod’s have to approve each post but do they need to personally comment on each post they approve? Do you see how that sets up the direction of the convo?

Anyway, thanks. I wasn't trying to cause a fight or stir the pot just expressing my opinion and my first impressions as a new poster.

Stay blessed.
I would be careful if I were you. I am all for speaking ones mind and I frequently do. But I have been posting on here for some time and I am able to balance those sentiments I agree with against those I dont in the case of any given individual.
Selective quoting is not likely to give you a real understanding of the poster in question. Remember there are issues on which you will find a Buddhist consensus pretty much, and other issues on which you definitely won’t. Take your time to settle in.
“You don’t know it. You just know about it. That is not the same thing.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche to me.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Queequeg » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:14 pm

tkp67 wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:42 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:26 pm
As far as rhetoric goes, Donald Trump is a lawless gangster, and those who voted for him should shabsolutely ashamed of themselves and what the GOP has become. Lindsey Graham is the new poster boy for GOP fecklessness. Trump is not a conservative.

I hope this doesn't seem a critique Malcolm for it is not. I just feel this is an example that reveals how I think and how I act in response to the OP. if I had voted for trump I agree wholeheartedly with this statement. However if I make the same assumption for someone else who voted for trump aren't I assuming they have encountered the conditions to know my perspective?

That is where it could be seen a bit extreme. I could see that potentially causing that engaging more emotion instead of keeping conversation rooted in reason.

To complicate it however some traditions might deem this as productive compassionate wrath. Can we afford to be silent and not potentially expose ignorance?

The biggest obstacle for me is I often assume people hold the same predicate understanding that validates my own experiential wisdom. Personally I find it better not to assume. This is where equal compassion for all involved goes a long way IMHO. Are people being willingly belligerent in their decisions or are they "innocently" ignorant. I.E. suffering an ignorance they simply do not understand.

Innocent ignorance is like being thirst in a desert, water goes a long way to changing outlook.

Regards
In my experience talking with Trump supporters, I don't think I've encountered anyone who denies that Trump is, at best amoral, if not immoral; that he uses coarse language and has coarsened public discourse; that he flouts the rules... in short, that he is an ass hole.

A lot of them admire him for being an ass hole. They think this is what the country needs to break the hold of the ruling class and disrupt business as usual.

Many are worse.

As a base line, we ought to expect that American Citizens should understand how the government works and the philosophies that underlie it. They ought to understand that when Trump (or any executive for that matter) relies on the outsized executive powers that he invokes, that he is literally breaking our system of government. And in fact, many of those people do appear to understand this - if you bring up Obama or Clinton, you are likely to set off a tirade on how they abused executive power and undermined democracy. And yet, when Trump does it... crickets, at best, but usually, just spin.

We're not abiding in a vacuum, here. What we see here is informed by our actual experiences IRL.

As a matter of personal conduct, I don't think any of us, liberal or conservative, acts out what they say on the internet. I think there is something to the suggestion that we ought to conduct ourselves online as we do in real life. But, we're also here to have discussions with the understanding that we can push and test out ideas beyond what we could in real life. We can take a position, argue it vigorously, have it met with vigorous critique, and thereby, we have an excellent engine for the evolution and refinement of thinking. This is an amazing function - and for the most part at DW, its used for Dharma, which, IMHO, make this one of the jewels of the internet.

Sometimes we resort to calling names, but all in all, this is hardly one of the gutters of the internet.
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.
-Ayacana Sutta

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Queequeg
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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Queequeg » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:24 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:57 pm
Well, I'm not a rabid righty, :twothumbsup:

This was just a topic that grew out of my reading of recent posts. It was not me seeking to confirm my bias but to see what Buddhism is all about. I appreciate your irenic responses to my questions and your patience.

Blackthorne
I didn't mean to suggest that I thought you were. I hope my comment was not taken that way. You would not have seen the kinds of comments I referred to because we remove those from public view, and so there is no way that you might find sympathy with them.

In any event, a thoughtful conservative in the conversation is very welcome, although you will not often find camaraderie and may instead encounter outright confrontation and critique. If you can weather it, all the best. If not, you might avoid politics here and just stick to Dharma discussions.
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.
-Ayacana Sutta

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by tkp67 » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:27 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:14 pm

In my experience talking with Trump supporters, I don't think I've encountered anyone who denies that Trump is, at best amoral, if not immoral; that he uses coarse language and has coarsened public discourse; that he flouts the rules... in short, that he is an ass hole.

A lot of them admire him for being an ass hole. They think this is what the country needs to break the hold of the ruling class and disrupt business as usual.
Personally I don't believe in generalities such as terms like "trump supporters" because this does not represent true expression in regards to reality. But I concede that this "stereotypical" nature is common.

I do feel that politics makes it easy to engage a lower paths mentality. This is subtle and beyond the grasp of many to see in themselves. This does not mean they are not approachable or capable of coming to terms with the detriments in his manner.

We're not abiding in a vacuum, here. What we see here is informed by our actual experiences IRL.

As a matter of personal conduct, I don't think any of us, liberal or conservative, acts out what they say on the internet. I think there is something to the suggestion that we ought to conduct ourselves online as we do in real life. But, we're also here to have discussions with the understanding that we can push and test out ideas beyond what we could in real life. We can take a position, argue it vigorously, have it met with vigorous critique, and thereby, we have an excellent engine for the evolution and refinement of thinking. This is an amazing function - and for the most part at DW, its used for Dharma, which, IMHO, make this one of the jewels of the internet.

Sometimes we resort to calling names, but all in all, this is hardly one of the gutters of the internet.
Expressing the mind regardless of medium evokes causation. I am not question the validity of sharpening swords. I am suggesting that when the dialog mimics the tactics of DT by evoking emotion that this gives way to a view that this site is supporting samsara.

My suggestion was to compassionately hold all posters in mind because there everything is valid. It is the projection and response of unreasonable emotion that causes strife and mirrors samsara. I suggest to people who see it as samsaric as injecting compassion and reason without bias or judgement. Set the example. It is not impossible.

I believe we all have this capacity.

:anjali:

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by tkp67 » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:30 pm

There is something inspiring when these conversations give rise to emotion (a natural aspect of existence) and it is compassionately processed and kept from derailing the conversation to a fruitful result

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:34 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:40 pm

Anyway, thanks. I wasn't trying to cause a fight or stir the pot just expressing my opinion and my first impressions as a new poster.

And for my part, I have never understood how a republican can square their economic beliefs in unfettered free trade, their absurd climate change denialism, and their commitment to undermining education and healthcare with their supposed religious commitment to bearing love and compassion for all sentient beings. However, most of the GOP Buddhists I know do not belong to a mainstream Buddhist denomination, but rather somewhat fringy groups.

That said, there are Asian Buddhist leaders who do come from a more conservative mind set, and this causes their devoted western students to often experience cognitive dissonance when the latter discover their teacher is an antidemocratic authoritarian who hates muslims and black people, and thinks that Trump and Putin are the bomb.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Queequeg » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:36 pm

tkp67 wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:27 pm
Expressing the mind regardless of medium evokes causation. I am not question the validity of sharpening swords. I am suggesting that when the dialog mimics the tactics of DT by evoking emotion that this gives way to a view that this site is supporting samsara.

My suggestion was to compassionately hold all posters in mind because there everything is valid. It is the projection and response of unreasonable emotion that causes strife and mirrors samsara. I suggest to people who see it as samsaric as injecting compassion and reason without bias or judgement. Set the example. It is not impossible.

I believe we all have this capacity.

:anjali:
Well, you are certainly more idealistic about DW than I am. This is very much samsara and there is no question about it. A lot of what goes on here is prapanca. Sometimes you can find some jewels here.

TBH, without the prapanca... this place would be crickets. The goal is to balance out the entertainment value with at least a modicum of Dharma edification. If you want to use this as an avenue for practicing patience, go for it. In which case, you might want to encourage others to turn up the heat - all the better to practice patience and kindness.

I'm joking and serious.
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.
-Ayacana Sutta

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 15, 2020 7:08 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:36 pm


TBH, without the prapanca... this place would be crickets. The goal is to balance out the entertainment value with at least a modicum of Dharma edification. If you want to use this as an avenue for practicing patience, go for it. In which case, you might want to encourage others to turn up the heat - all the better to practice patience and kindness.

I'm joking and serious.
This is a good way of putting it. Just notice what happens when we get a super-contentious political thread, a thread on controversy etc. it's usually crickets everywhere else (i.e. actual Dharma discussion) and the political threads with their endless sniping go for page after page. It'd be pretty naive to think that all those pages are productive discussion. There are gems here and there, but we either have to dig or try starting conversations ourselves that lead to clear answers on Dharma questions. That means willingly letting go of the pleasure of reifying ourselves and others ideologies though, and it's actually a tougher thing to do than it seems.
"...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: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Blackthorne » Wed Jan 15, 2020 9:23 pm

And for my part, I have never understood how a republican can square their economic beliefs in unfettered free trade, their absurd climate change denialism, and their commitment to undermining education and healthcare with their supposed religious commitment to bearing love and compassion for all sentient beings. However, most of the GOP Buddhists I know do not belong to a mainstream Buddhist denomination, but rather somewhat fringy groups.

That said, there are Asian Buddhist leaders who do come from a more conservative mind set, and this causes their devoted western students to often experience cognitive dissonance when the latter discover their teacher is an antidemocratic authoritarian who hates muslims and black people, and thinks that Trump and Putin are the bomb.
I'm Canadian and have no dog in the fight when it comes to GOP vs. anyone.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:07 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:57 pm
Well, I'm not a rabid righty, :twothumbsup:

This was just a topic that grew out of my reading of recent posts. It was not me seeking to confirm my bias but to see what Buddhism is all about. I appreciate your irenic responses to my questions and your patience.

Blackthorne
This is just confirmation bias at work, combined with the fact that you don't see a lot of the right wing-generated insults or "hate", because 50% of it tends to break the Terms of Service and gets removed.

As a mod here I've been physically threatened by right wing users on the forum (not that I took it seriously, they were all talk), had them call me cuck, fag, libtard, and all kinds of other things. From my perspective the idea that there is "hate" only on one side is pretty laughable. I've had some really contentious conversations with what might be termed "SJW's" here too...but they never threatened me or called me names, thus they required a lot less moderation, generally speaking.

It -is- true that the forum itself skews to the left. So yes, there is a bias here simply by virtue of political demographics. I find that most political threads are not initiated for the purpose of debate in the first place here, but normally to attempt to make a political point somehow. Honestly that is as true of left wing political posts as it is right wing ones. Most political threads get locked here because they get predictably ugly. I've been criticized for locking them too quickly, but every time I see where one ends up I feel ok with those decisions.

I personally wish everyone would just use Dharmawheel engaged more for this kind of thing, but it hasn't worked out that way, so we have to set parameters of political debate here. It's a shame because these threads bring out the teeth quickly, and suck energy away from other threads.
"...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: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:14 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 9:23 pm
And for my part, I have never understood how a republican can square their economic beliefs in unfettered free trade, their absurd climate change denialism, and their commitment to undermining education and healthcare with their supposed religious commitment to bearing love and compassion for all sentient beings. However, most of the GOP Buddhists I know do not belong to a mainstream Buddhist denomination, but rather somewhat fringy groups.

That said, there are Asian Buddhist leaders who do come from a more conservative mind set, and this causes their devoted western students to often experience cognitive dissonance when the latter discover their teacher is an antidemocratic authoritarian who hates muslims and black people, and thinks that Trump and Putin are the bomb.
I'm Canadian and have no dog in the fight when it comes to GOP vs. anyone.
Canadian conservatives are basically liberals; unless you think Canada should eliminate universal health care, start letting Pharma set drug prices for your nation and so on, in which case, you are insane.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by justsit » Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:42 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:07 pm
I personally wish everyone would just use Dharmawheel engaged more for this kind of thing, but it hasn't worked out that way, so we have to set parameters of political debate here. It's a shame because these threads bring out the teeth quickly, and suck energy away from other threads.
DWT somehow shifted all political-type conversations to DWE a while ago; no clue what the mechanics of that process involved, but there is essentially no political discussion on DWT now. DWE now mostly skews right, because more conservative Western DWT members took their conversations there.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by steveb1 » Wed Jan 15, 2020 11:05 pm

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 1:52 am
From the reading I've done and the few practicing Buddhists I know, I would gather that Buddhism leans to the right socially/politically, but online I see a lot 'hate' toward conservative points of view.

Does Buddhism require you to be a liberal?

Thanks
As a Jodo Shinshu/Shin Buddhist, I do not feel obliged to be political at all, but certainly not liberal (which is the subject of this thread). Compassion is not solely a liberal or progressive virtue, but even so, that is irrelevant to Shin, because it teaches that we must in this life live out our past karma (presumably this includes political leanings), before karma is extinguished by Amida Buddha in His Pure Land. So if, with the best conscience possible, we are liberal or conservative in this life - our last life "on the wheel" - this is not a central factor for our Buddhism.
We are only obliged to do the best we can according to our own lights, and as far as we are capable, of practicing the Buddhistic precepts.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by Kim O'Hara » Thu Jan 16, 2020 12:09 am

justsit wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:42 pm
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:07 pm
I personally wish everyone would just use Dharmawheel engaged more for this kind of thing, but it hasn't worked out that way, so we have to set parameters of political debate here. It's a shame because these threads bring out the teeth quickly, and suck energy away from other threads.
DWT somehow shifted all political-type conversations to DWE a while ago; no clue what the mechanics of that process involved, but there is essentially no political discussion on DWT now.
The DWT admin at the time (and still now) wanted to get rid of all the non-dhamma stuff by simply shutting down the relevant sub-forums. DWE was proposed, either by him or by David, as a home for those kinds of discussions. I doubted that it would work, just because there wouldn't be enough activity to keep people coming back, but I thought it deserved a chance and I took on the job of founding admin. Having given it a year to flourish or die, I handed it back to DNS, in the absence of anyone else willing to do it, a few months ago.
DWE now mostly skews right, because more conservative Western DWT members took their conversations there.
That's not really fair or accurate. The only right-aligned active member is (somewhat ironically) the aforesaid DWT admin, retrofuturist, posting as SethRich.

And, sadly, there are hardly any conversations. DWM members can have more active political conversations right here, where there are simply more active members, and there never were many DWT members interested in social issues. Some of them/us were already members of DWM as well, anyway. And DWE is ... crickets.

:namaste:
Kim

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by tkp67 » Thu Jan 16, 2020 12:36 am

Queequeg wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:36 pm
tkp67 wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:27 pm
Expressing the mind regardless of medium evokes causation. I am not question the validity of sharpening swords. I am suggesting that when the dialog mimics the tactics of DT by evoking emotion that this gives way to a view that this site is supporting samsara.

My suggestion was to compassionately hold all posters in mind because there everything is valid. It is the projection and response of unreasonable emotion that causes strife and mirrors samsara. I suggest to people who see it as samsaric as injecting compassion and reason without bias or judgement. Set the example. It is not impossible.

I believe we all have this capacity.

:anjali:
Well, you are certainly more idealistic about DW than I am. This is very much samsara and there is no question about it. A lot of what goes on here is prapanca. Sometimes you can find some jewels here.

TBH, without the prapanca... this place would be crickets. The goal is to balance out the entertainment value with at least a modicum of Dharma edification. If you want to use this as an avenue for practicing patience, go for it. In which case, you might want to encourage others to turn up the heat - all the better to practice patience and kindness.

I'm joking and serious.
I don't wish to stifle candid conversation. In reality candid conversation reflects more of our experiential reality than dharma practices.

I am simply suggesting that it makes for a great opportunity to do both in an economy of efforts. That is attempt candid conversation while mindfully working to avoid marginalization of others in the process. All of our perspectives are personally valid if not always reasonable for everyone. Variation in perspective and even diametrically opposed perspectives are natural and normal. Often even conflicting perspectives were not crafted for that purpose. They simply are reflective of causes and conditions.

I think that some of the points of view would benefit from deeper evaluation using inductive/deductive reasoning. I think to the in the Lotus Sutra eyes of the world. It makes me think of how our various perceptions give a deeper perspective on the nature of reality. Hard to do polarized.

That kind of dialog seems to be potentially interesting and productive and perhaps this is where my bias lie.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by PeterC » Thu Jan 16, 2020 12:49 am

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 9:23 pm
And for my part, I have never understood how a republican can square their economic beliefs in unfettered free trade, their absurd climate change denialism, and their commitment to undermining education and healthcare with their supposed religious commitment to bearing love and compassion for all sentient beings. However, most of the GOP Buddhists I know do not belong to a mainstream Buddhist denomination, but rather somewhat fringy groups.

That said, there are Asian Buddhist leaders who do come from a more conservative mind set, and this causes their devoted western students to often experience cognitive dissonance when the latter discover their teacher is an antidemocratic authoritarian who hates muslims and black people, and thinks that Trump and Putin are the bomb.
I'm Canadian and have no dog in the fight when it comes to GOP vs. anyone.
I’m not so sure that being in Canada isolates you from the consequences of four more years of a republican/trump administration.

Practising the dharma does not require anyone to show consideration and accommodation towards views that are harmful or malign. A large part of what the current US regime is doing fits that description pretty well. Frankly I think categorizations such as conservative and liberal mean very little these days, the words have shifted meaning considerably over the years and now represent an agglomeration of positions that often have little to do with one another. A conservative in 1950s America would be a liberal today, for example.

We can debate whether people who elected, and continue to support the likes of trump (or bojo, or scomo, or other parts of the malignant global idiocracy) are misinformed, misguided, manipulated or just a little stupid and/or selfish. The answer is probably all of the above to differing degrees. I know a lot of very intelligent people who voted for trump despite profoundly disagreeing with most of what he intended to do simply because they were rich and wanted the inevitable tax breaks. They at least were honest about it.

What we shouldn’t do, Buddhist or not, is decide that showing “consideration”, “civility”, “kindness” or whatever is more important than being honest about the outcomes that their votes are advancing. Or pretend that somehow the likes of trump, graham, McConnell et al are not assholes. Because they are. Dishonesty here serves neither society nor the dharma.

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Re: Does Buddhism Require You To Be a Liberal?

Post by 明安 Myoan » Thu Jan 16, 2020 2:04 am

Blackthorne wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 1:52 am
From the reading I've done and the few practicing Buddhists I know, I would gather that Buddhism leans to the right socially/politically, but online I see a lot 'hate' toward conservative points of view.

Does Buddhism require you to be a liberal?

Thanks
Hello, Blackthorne.

In Mahayana Buddhism, there are the Ten Cardinal Mahayana Precepts. The form I learned them in is:
1. I vow not to kill.
2. I vow not to steal.
3. I vow not to commit sexual misconduct.
4. I vow not to lie.
5. I vow not to consume intoxicants.
6. I vow not to speak of others' errors and faults.
7. I vow not to praise myself and blame others.
8. I vow not to be stingy or withholding.
9. I vow not to harbor or incite anger.
10. I vow not to defile the Three Treasures
Discussing politics or others' political opinions makes it easy for me to break several of the above precepts, so I avoid it.

Some versions of the Ten Precepts include "or encourage others to do so" for each precept.

There's also this advice from Shantideva in Guide to the Bodhisattva Way of Life:
49. When my mind is haughty, sarcastic, full of conceit and
arrogance, ridiculing, evasive, and deceitful,
50. When it is inclined to boast, or when it is contemptuous of
others, abusive, and irritable, then I should remain still like a
piece of wood.
51. When my mind seeks material gain, honor, and fame, or
when it seeks attendants and service, then I will remain still
like a piece of wood.
52. When my mind is averse to the interests of others and seeks
my own self-interest, or when it wishes to speak out of a
desire for an audience, then I will remain still like a piece of
wood.
53. When it is impatient, indolent, timid, impudent, garrulous, or
biased in my own favor, then I will remain still like a piece
of wood.
54. Perceiving in this way that the mind is afflicted or engaged
in fruitless activities, the hero should always firmly control it
by means of an antidote to that.
55. Resolute, confident, steadfast, respectful and courteous,
modest, meek, calm, devoted to pleasing others,
56. Undistressed by the mutually incompatible desires of foolish
people, endowed with compassion, knowing that they are
like this as a consequence of the arising of their mental
afflictions,
57. Always resorting to irreproachable things for the sake of myself and others, I will maintain my mind free of pride, like an
apparition.
This has helped me develop a better sense for what kinds of conversations will lead to benefit or more problems.
With a heart wandering in ignorance down this path and that, to guide me I simply say Namu-Amida-Butsu. -- Ippen

Reciting the nembutsu and believing in birth in the Pure Land naturally give rise to the Three Minds and the Four Modes of Practice. -- Master Hōnen

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