Page 1 of 3

Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:59 pm
by Dan74
One of our favourite topics, especially with all the scandals and such. Many folks in Mahayana (incl Zen) and Vajrayana basically think it's ok for teachers to sleep with their students, even in secret, even when one of both are married. Teachers are human too, the reasoning goes, and not some perfect embodiment of our fantasy of an enlightened guru. True, that is, at least in 99% of cases, and it's always good to get disabused of fantasies. But it's also good to know what's wholesome and what's not.

In East Asian Buddhist, the Sutra of Complete Enlightenment (Perfect Enlightenment) has traditionally been very important. And this is what it says:
"Good sons, all sentient beings transmigrate because of their possession, from beginningless time, of affection, attached love, craving and desire."

"Since all the different types of beings—those born from eggs, those born from wombs, those born from moisture and those born by transformation all receive their birth and life from sexual desire, you should realize that cyclic existence has attached love as its basis. This tendency to be gripped by attached love is abetted by the existence of all desires, therefore it is able to empower the continuity of saṃsāra. Desire arises depending upon attached love; life force exists depending upon desire. Furthermore, the attached love and life of sentient beings have desire as their root. Attached love and desire are causes, attached love and life are results."

"It is in reference to the objects of desire that you arise all likes and dislikes. When the object is contrary to the attached mind, you arise aversion and jealousy and go around creating all sorts of karma. It is because of this that you are reborn as a hell-being or a hungry ghost. But then, knowing that desire should be abandoned and attaching to the path of abandonment of karmic activity, you cast off evil and enjoy goodness; hence, you are reborn as a god or man. Again, knowing that you should dislike all forms of attachment, you let go of attachment and enjoy detachment. This greatly nourishes the root of attachment and you automatically produce conditionally enhanced positive states. But since all of this is cyclic existence, you still do not attain to the sagely Way. Therefore, sentient beings who desire to be free from birth and death and want to escape cyclic existence, first have to sever desire and rid themselves of attached love."
http://www.acmuller.net/bud-canon/sutra ... nment.html

While we work with the circumstances and our karma such as they are, I think it's important to realise what binds us. What do you think?

_/|\_

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:03 pm
by seeker242
Dan74 wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:59 pm
Many folks in Mahayana (incl Zen) and Vajrayana basically think it's ok for teachers to sleep with their students, even in secret, even when one of both are married.
I've never heard anyone say that.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:10 pm
by Monlam Tharchin
What is attached love? Is it automatically any kind of familial or marital relationship, or maybe specifically self-cherishing in those relationships? I think many married folks would agree that marriage has taught me a great deal about cherishing the well-being of another over myself.

Thanks!

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 6:37 pm
by M.G.
Dan74 wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:59 pm
One of our favourite topics, especially with all the scandals and such. Many folks in Mahayana (incl Zen) and Vajrayana basically think it's ok for teachers to sleep with their students, even in secret, even when one of both are married. Teachers are human too, the reasoning goes, and not some perfect embodiment of our fantasy of an enlightened guru. True, that is, at least in 99% of cases, and it's always good to get disabused of fantasies. But it's also good to know what's wholesome and what's not.

In East Asian Buddhist, the Sutra of Complete Enlightenment (Perfect Enlightenment) has traditionally been very important. And this is what it says:
"Good sons, all sentient beings transmigrate because of their possession, from beginningless time, of affection, attached love, craving and desire."

"Since all the different types of beings—those born from eggs, those born from wombs, those born from moisture and those born by transformation all receive their birth and life from sexual desire, you should realize that cyclic existence has attached love as its basis. This tendency to be gripped by attached love is abetted by the existence of all desires, therefore it is able to empower the continuity of saṃsāra. Desire arises depending upon attached love; life force exists depending upon desire. Furthermore, the attached love and life of sentient beings have desire as their root. Attached love and desire are causes, attached love and life are results."

"It is in reference to the objects of desire that you arise all likes and dislikes. When the object is contrary to the attached mind, you arise aversion and jealousy and go around creating all sorts of karma. It is because of this that you are reborn as a hell-being or a hungry ghost. But then, knowing that desire should be abandoned and attaching to the path of abandonment of karmic activity, you cast off evil and enjoy goodness; hence, you are reborn as a god or man. Again, knowing that you should dislike all forms of attachment, you let go of attachment and enjoy detachment. This greatly nourishes the root of attachment and you automatically produce conditionally enhanced positive states. But since all of this is cyclic existence, you still do not attain to the sagely Way. Therefore, sentient beings who desire to be free from birth and death and want to escape cyclic existence, first have to sever desire and rid themselves of attached love."
http://www.acmuller.net/bud-canon/sutra ... nment.html

While we work with the circumstances and our karma such as they are, I think it's important to realise what binds us. What do you think?

_/|\_
I haven’t heard students say that this sort of thing is OK, though maybe others have.

What I generally have found is that there’s a lot of reticence to admit that teachers make mistakes, and that very often gossip takes a role which might be better served by public dialogue. (That’s human nature for you.)

Basically, as long as things are consensual and the teacher isn’t claiming celibacy, or publically preaching a sexual ethic they don’t actually follow, I think any relations they have with students are OK.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 7:12 pm
by Grigoris

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 7:58 pm
by Rick
Hi Dan! :-)

I just read this in the Alan Wallace online course I'm taking and got such a kick out of it I immediately emailed it to my teacher who LOVED it! It's talking about Düdjom Lingpa's life and, as you'll see, is relevant to this thread:

Dodrupchen Rinpoché states in Wonder Ocean that all treasure revealers
have consorts. In order to reveal teachings concealed in the mind’s essential
nature, “it is also necessary to have the spontaneously arisen bliss which can
be produced by a special consort who has made the appropriate aspirations in
the past, and who is to become the key to accomplishment.” Besides having
been told that he was able to withdraw only half of the treasures revealed to
him for lacking a consort, Düdjom Lingpa received numerous instructions
to rely upon consorts, both wisdom beings and worldly ḍākinīs, along with
predictions of the accomplished sons to issue from his relationships with the
worldly ones. He fathered eight sons by three consorts — all eight of whom
were recognized as reincarnations of renowned masters.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 8:22 pm
by smcj
Monlam Tharchin wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:10 pm
What is attached love? Is it automatically any kind of familial or marital relationship, or maybe specifically self-cherishing in those relationships? I think many married folks would agree that marriage has taught me a great deal about cherishing the well-being of another over myself.
I think the party line on this is that there is value in married life for the reason that you describe. However in the final analysis it is a finite and ultimately limiting expression of your Buddha Nature.

A real Buddha has/is spontaneous love and compassion for everybody. That is a greater expression of love, so by comparison it falls short.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:07 pm
by Malcolm
rachmiel wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 7:58 pm

Dodrupchen Rinpoché states in Wonder Ocean that all treasure revealers
have consorts.
Most, not all. He mentions significant exceptions like Rigzin Jatson Nyingpo, etc.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:32 pm
by Rick
Malcolm wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:07 pm
rachmiel wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 7:58 pm

Dodrupchen Rinpoché states in Wonder Ocean that all treasure revealers
have consorts.
Most, not all. He mentions significant exceptions like Rigzin Jatson Nyingpo, etc.
Hmm ... I hope he had a nice big picture of White Tara to keep him warm in those cold Tibetan nights:

Image

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:34 pm
by Jesse
There are many predators out there who are glad you think so too. :juggling:

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:50 pm
by Rick
Jesse, et al, if my posting offended you ... if you feel it puts something harmful out into the world ... let me know and I'll delete it. I'm aware of the "Me too" effort going on now, I posted a "Me too" on my Facebook page. A little White Tara levity doesn't disturb me at all, but that's me. If it disturbs anyone else, OFF with its head!

Let me know. :namaste:

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:54 pm
by Jesse
There's nothing wrong with the picture. They are just breasts. I think the issue is if people find themselves filled with desire, which is the opposite of the Buddhist path. I think the entire sex thing within Vajrayana is at best counterproductive, and at worst a great excuse for predators to take advantage of others.

Edit: On second thought, how the hell does she WALK? Man, that'd hurt.. and why does she look like she just smoked a doob?

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:24 pm
by Rick
So you're okay with my leaving the image there?

Just say the word and I'll get Kali to chop off WT's head! (Did you know Kali is the only demon who is capable of beheading the Buddha?)

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:35 pm
by Sherab
I think it is important to get one thing straight. In the context of Buddhism, whether something is ok or not ok is referenced only to whether it helps or hinders the liberation of beings (including yourself) from involuntary cycling through various existences.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:51 pm
by Rick
So, in that context, is the White Tara image and attendant joke ok?

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:03 pm
by Jesse
Sherab wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:35 pm
I think it is important to get one thing straight. In the context of Buddhism, whether something is ok or not ok is referenced only to whether it helps or hinders the liberation of beings (including yourself) from involuntary cycling through various existences.
Absolutely, there is a catch, however. It's far too easy to use that as an excuse to do the thing's we want or to justify our otherwise unbecoming behavior.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:35 pm
by Sherab
Jesse wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:03 pm
Sherab wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:35 pm
I think it is important to get one thing straight. In the context of Buddhism, whether something is ok or not ok is referenced only to whether it helps or hinders the liberation of beings (including yourself) from involuntary cycling through various existences.
Absolutely, there is a catch, however. It's far too easy to use that as an excuse to do the thing's we want or to justify our otherwise unbecoming behavior.
If in doubt, don't.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:57 pm
by PuerAzaelis
Only psychotics have no doubt.

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 12:24 am
by jkarlins
seeker242 wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:03 pm
Dan74 wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:59 pm
Many folks in Mahayana (incl Zen) and Vajrayana basically think it's ok for teachers to sleep with their students, even in secret, even when one of both are married.
I've never heard anyone say that.
yes, me neither.

I've heard it in other circles, but not really Buddhist ones, and usually after scandals.

Jake

Re: Buddhism and Lust, is it ok, not ok, kind of ok?

Posted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 12:26 am
by Monlam Tharchin
PuerAzaelis wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:57 pm
Only psychotics have no doubt.
What does this sentence mean?