Bodhicitta is fleeting...

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Jeff H
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Location: Vermont, USA

Re: Bodhicitta is fleeting...

Post by Jeff H » Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:36 pm

bokki wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 3:17 am
very, very interesting, for me, ideas and the whole thread, thnx all.
we are talking about bodhicitta, the will for enlightenment, here and by that topic, also, about compassion.
imo, only in my opinion, all and everything , from little quarks, electrons, protons, molecules
cells, organisms, are a representation and result of bodhicitta.
i am surely wrong about that and i aM open to hear other, more precise thoughts about bodhicitta.

but, hey kausalya,
You forgive the wolf for acting in ignorance, & you take steps to prevent it from causing harm, on the basis that it can't control its current form or the state of its mind.
hmm, you forgive it? for being a wolf? or for being ones mother?
and what are these steps that one should take? please be precise, if the mods allow it...
what would be compassionate, in the view of bodhicitta, to a wolf that wants to eat your cow?

you certainly know, the world is full of such, much worse examples.
hypothetically only, if a rabid wolf, appears in front of ones family,
what compassion will one use..
while forgiving the frothing and foaming at the mouth wolf?
will one think of mothers, compassion and bodhicitta?

i hope not.

well, i ask these things, as it is quite important to me that we stay true to the words of the teachings,
which sometimes make startling , should i say, confusing, ideas.

how is a worm , now, ever ones mother, my friends?
are you really so literal in your reading of the teachings?
Bodhicitta is more than the wish to attain enlightenment. It is a wish for enlightenment because one cannot bear to see any beings suffering. The end of suffering cannot be attained within samsara, which itself is the product of ignorant, erroneous views of reality.

This is why the primary focus of Buddhism is on transforming one’s view. Secondarily we still must do whatever we can to lessen the suffering of beings. Before enlightenment one is only a trainee in that endeavor, lacking the necessary depth of vision and breadth of knowledge to realize the consequences of one’s own actions, let alone those of others.

When the wolves come for your cattle, there are many whose only response is killing them. The same is true for insects invading your house. People who are genuinely trying to lessen the suffering of all beings have to struggle with alternative responses, many of which are completely impractical within the limitations of samsara. Buddhadharma is not fully realizable within those limitations, so the results are spotty at best. By way of example, although I don’t know the details, I believe that some years ago there was a successful effort to repatriate the wolves of Yellowstone and create alternatives for peaceful co-existence with the local farmers.

BTW, it isn't about forgiveness. There is nothing to forgive. We're all ignorant and behaving out of that ignorance. The way out of samsara begins by realizing that we're all in this together, by making the effort to recognize our universal ignorance, and by taking steps to reduce ignorance and increase wisdom.

The teaching about every being having been your mother is not meant to imply that a worm gave birth and it was “you”. It is intended to help us realize that the causally linked successions of experiential moments, which we identify with as “self” within any given lifetime, has been transmuting through countless rebirths in all six realms of samsara. Each separate lifetime we have experienced has required a mother to sponsor us, so the logical conclusion is drawn that within an infinity of births, every mental continuum has been in a mother-child relationship with every other mental continuum at some point.

The focus is placed on “mother” because, regardless of our individual experiences of our mothers of this life, there is a shared, ideal concept of motherhood as a supremely nurturing relationship. We have an idea of what a good mother should be, and this teaching tells us to keep that idea of having been fondly nurtured by every other being uppermost in mind. The same teaching implies that we have also been worst enemies with every other being at some point, but if we can hear the wisdom of the every-mother teaching, we need to realize it is time that we focus on positive relationships rather than negative.
We who are like children shrink from pain but love its causes. - Shantideva

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