Insects practice?

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Tenma
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Tenma » Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:06 am

fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:09 am
Why be bothered about the death of insects, but not be bothered by the death of bacteria? Have you ever taken anti-biotics? How did you feel about the death of trillions of living beings?
Ah, but are we not killing bacteria every second? So why complain when we're all killing bacteria even right now? Also, does bacteria even count in the category of sentient beings even though it's scientifically alive?
If you're going to complain about bacteria as sentient beings, why don't you try liberating them yourself? And what's wrong with antibiotics? They are a great benefit to humanity to live on and not die from infections and so forth, thus ending at least a portion of the suffering(except now its getting weaker due to it being used for everything and people not using enough of it as prescribed such as emptying the bottle, except they just leave some left when they feel better).

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javier.espinoza.t
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by javier.espinoza.t » Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:47 pm

fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:09 am
Why be bothered about the death of insects, but not be bothered by the death of bacteria? Have you ever taken anti-biotics? How did you feel about the death of trillions of living beings?
i'm not sure if cells have self-reference, but is an interesting subject
what are you doing

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Re: Insects practice?

Post by pemachophel » Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:59 pm

bacteria are in the vegetable kingdom. so are not sentient beings in any case by Buddhist definition. (you should've asked about anti-protozoals or anti-helminthics.)
Pema Chophel པདྨ་ཆོས་འཕེལ

Tenma
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Tenma » Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:14 pm

pemachophel wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:59 pm
bacteria are in the vegetable kingdom. so are not sentient beings in any case by Buddhist definition. (you should've asked about anti-protozoals or anti-helminthics.)
Actually, bacteria have an entirely different kingdom AND domain.

Varis
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Varis » Tue Mar 13, 2018 6:07 pm

fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:09 am
Why be bothered about the death of insects, but not be bothered by the death of bacteria? Have you ever taken anti-biotics? How did you feel about the death of trillions of living beings?
That's Jain dharma, not Buddhadharma.

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Lobsang Chojor
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:21 pm

Tenma wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:14 pm
pemachophel wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:59 pm
bacteria are in the vegetable kingdom. so are not sentient beings in any case by Buddhist definition. (you should've asked about anti-protozoals or anti-helminthics.)
Actually, bacteria have an entirely different kingdom AND domain.
There is a difference between the Linnaean classification and the Buddhist classification of life
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  • Aryasura, Paramitasamasa 6.5
ༀ་ཨ་ར་པ་ཙ་ན་དྷཱི༔ Oṃ A Ra Pa Ca Na Dhīḥ

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Thomas Amundsen
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Thomas Amundsen » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:00 pm

Tenma wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:14 pm
pemachophel wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:59 pm
bacteria are in the vegetable kingdom. so are not sentient beings in any case by Buddhist definition. (you should've asked about anti-protozoals or anti-helminthics.)
Actually, bacteria have an entirely different kingdom AND domain.
Yep. Also, my teacher says bacteria are sentient beings, which I'm inclined to agree with. Khenpo said our bacteria are deities in our vast body mandala. Kathok Getse Rinpoche gave instructions once to not eat ginger or turmeric while on retreat, and when I asked Khenpo about this, he said it is because these herbs kill the bacteria deities.


I've also had an online discussion with a practitioner whose lama is some kind of biology researcher or something like that, and his teacher also considers bacteria to be sentient beings.

Tenma
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Tenma » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:03 pm

Thomas Amundsen wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:00 pm
Tenma wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:14 pm
pemachophel wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:59 pm
bacteria are in the vegetable kingdom. so are not sentient beings in any case by Buddhist definition. (you should've asked about anti-protozoals or anti-helminthics.)
Actually, bacteria have an entirely different kingdom AND domain.
Yep. Also, my teacher says bacteria are sentient beings, which I'm inclined to agree with. Khenpo said our bacteria are deities in our vast body mandala. I've also had an online discussion with a practitioner whose lama is some kind of biology researcher or something like that, and his teacher also considers bacteria to be sentient beings.
Wait, then we're already killing many bacteria even right now. So how is one supposed to reach enlightenment when they clean themselves which kills off bacteria and consumption of certain things only destroys more bacteria? Are we supposed to starve ourselves(even though that might kill bacteria as well)? What on earth are we supposed to do with each of these cells? Next thing you know, viruses count as sentient beings(though I doubt that as they can only reproduce and cannot consume nor excrete).

fckw
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by fckw » Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:53 pm

My point is: Living is an inherently violent act. Whether you like it or not, being a living being takes away space that could be occupied by other living beings. Taking anti-biotics necessarily kills innumerable other living beings in order to save one single living being or at least to reduce its suffering. Buddhists caring about insects, but then arbitrarily drawing a line at an even smaller scale - it's simply absurd. (The argument, this be "Jain" but not "Buddhist" view is even more absurd, it's actually hilarious to me. It goes without saying that some thousands of years ago bacteria were not known to exist, hence claiming that one is"Jain" and the other "Buddhist" is essentially fantasy.) Either you don't kill any living beings (which is impossible, because it's what keeps your body alive), or you accept that your physical presence means death to numerous other living beings. Necessarily so.

There's another level on which the whole argument is simply wrong. People discussing death of insects usually (not always, but usually) replace LIVING Buddhism with Buddhist IDEAS. One's alive, it's practice anchored in reality. It accepts that the world is inherently ambiguous and that there are no ultimate rules as to what is and will always be valid. Obviously, that's no excuse for sloppy morals, rather it's acceptance that we have no full control over the world. The other is concepts, i.e. thinking about reality, that have replaced the living relationship with being. Not harming insects is of course a moral thing to do. Accepting that they take over your house is stupidity.

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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Aryjna » Tue Mar 13, 2018 10:08 pm

fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:53 pm
My point is: Living is an inherently violent act. Whether you like it or not, being a living being takes away space that could be occupied by other living beings. Taking anti-biotics necessarily kills innumerable other living beings in order to save one single living being or at least to reduce its suffering. Buddhists caring about insects, but then arbitrarily drawing a line at an even smaller scale - it's simply absurd. (The argument, this be "Jain" but not "Buddhist" view is even more absurd, it's actually hilarious to me. It goes without saying that some thousands of years ago bacteria were not known to exist, hence claiming that one is"Jain" and the other "Buddhist" is essentially fantasy.) Either you don't kill any living beings (which is impossible, because it's what keeps your body alive), or you accept that your physical presence means death to numerous other living beings. Necessarily so.

There's another level on which the whole argument is simply wrong. People discussing death of insects usually (not always, but usually) replace LIVING Buddhism with Buddhist IDEAS. One's alive, it's practice anchored in reality. It accepts that the world is inherently ambiguous and that there are no ultimate rules as to what is and will always be valid. Obviously, that's no excuse for sloppy morals, rather it's acceptance that we have no full control over the world. The other is concepts, i.e. thinking about reality, that have replaced the living relationship with being. Not harming insects is of course a moral thing to do. Accepting that they take over your house is stupidity.
You said "Why be bothered about the death of insects, but not be bothered by the death of bacteria?" But I don't think anyone said they were bothered by the death of insects. The question was how to benefit insects.

Also, assuming bacteria are sentient, which is debatable, one can benefit bacteria by doing any kind of practice, and since they are in your body already you benefit them automatically when you practice anyway, even if you are not doing it consciously. So what is the problem?

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Thomas Amundsen
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Thomas Amundsen » Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:00 am

fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:53 pm
My point is: Living is an inherently violent act. Whether you like it or not, being a living being takes away space that could be occupied by other living beings. Taking anti-biotics necessarily kills innumerable other living beings in order to save one single living being or at least to reduce its suffering. Buddhists caring about insects, but then arbitrarily drawing a line at an even smaller scale - it's simply absurd. (The argument, this be "Jain" but not "Buddhist" view is even more absurd, it's actually hilarious to me. It goes without saying that some thousands of years ago bacteria were not known to exist, hence claiming that one is"Jain" and the other "Buddhist" is essentially fantasy.) Either you don't kill any living beings (which is impossible, because it's what keeps your body alive), or you accept that your physical presence means death to numerous other living beings. Necessarily so.

There's another level on which the whole argument is simply wrong. People discussing death of insects usually (not always, but usually) replace LIVING Buddhism with Buddhist IDEAS. One's alive, it's practice anchored in reality. It accepts that the world is inherently ambiguous and that there are no ultimate rules as to what is and will always be valid. Obviously, that's no excuse for sloppy morals, rather it's acceptance that we have no full control over the world. The other is concepts, i.e. thinking about reality, that have replaced the living relationship with being. Not harming insects is of course a moral thing to do. Accepting that they take over your house is stupidity.
There's a difference in the intention of the act of killing. Eating a meal that unknowingly kills some unknown amount of bacteria is not the same intention as knowingly but regretfully killing a roach in your home, which is different in intention from purposefully squishing an ant or caterpillar in the park for fun and enjoyment.

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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Wed Mar 14, 2018 2:02 am

Thomas Amundsen wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:00 am
fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:53 pm
My point is: Living is an inherently violent act. Whether you like it or not, being a living being takes away space that could be occupied by other living beings. Taking anti-biotics necessarily kills innumerable other living beings in order to save one single living being or at least to reduce its suffering. Buddhists caring about insects, but then arbitrarily drawing a line at an even smaller scale - it's simply absurd. (The argument, this be "Jain" but not "Buddhist" view is even more absurd, it's actually hilarious to me. It goes without saying that some thousands of years ago bacteria were not known to exist, hence claiming that one is"Jain" and the other "Buddhist" is essentially fantasy.) Either you don't kill any living beings (which is impossible, because it's what keeps your body alive), or you accept that your physical presence means death to numerous other living beings. Necessarily so.

There's another level on which the whole argument is simply wrong. People discussing death of insects usually (not always, but usually) replace LIVING Buddhism with Buddhist IDEAS. One's alive, it's practice anchored in reality. It accepts that the world is inherently ambiguous and that there are no ultimate rules as to what is and will always be valid. Obviously, that's no excuse for sloppy morals, rather it's acceptance that we have no full control over the world. The other is concepts, i.e. thinking about reality, that have replaced the living relationship with being. Not harming insects is of course a moral thing to do. Accepting that they take over your house is stupidity.
There's a difference in the intention of the act of killing. Eating a meal that unknowingly kills some unknown amount of bacteria is not the same intention as knowingly but regretfully killing a roach in your home, which is different in intention from purposefully squishing an ant or caterpillar in the park for fun and enjoyment.
Exactly. We cannot control the fact that samsara involves constant killing, but we can adjust how and whether we benefit from other beings suffering, as well as trying to help beings where we can. It's less a question of black and white actions, and more one of overall effect nad many different actions and intention.
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DiamondMeru
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by DiamondMeru » Wed Mar 14, 2018 2:21 am

Killing insects is one of my challenges to fully embracing Not Killing part of the Eightfold path. My secular Western mind sees pests as to be dealt with as they spread and cause damage or health issues to your home. I am guilty of killing ants and feel sad and alway pray for them to have a fortunate rebirth but my logical mind says I am being to illogical with my faith. I found that taking extra precautions to keep them from entering the home, such as sweeping floors regularly, and washing surfaces with vinegar helps. I feel sadness every time I see roadkill and say a prayer for their souls, feeling ridiculous but true to my faith. It seems to me the whole insect protection is a way to practice Dharma to become more empathic towards all life. There is nothing wrong in practicing compassion even in the opposition of logical pest control.

Tenma
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Tenma » Wed Mar 14, 2018 2:32 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 2:02 am
Thomas Amundsen wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:00 am
fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:53 pm
My point is: Living is an inherently violent act. Whether you like it or not, being a living being takes away space that could be occupied by other living beings. Taking anti-biotics necessarily kills innumerable other living beings in order to save one single living being or at least to reduce its suffering. Buddhists caring about insects, but then arbitrarily drawing a line at an even smaller scale - it's simply absurd. (The argument, this be "Jain" but not "Buddhist" view is even more absurd, it's actually hilarious to me. It goes without saying that some thousands of years ago bacteria were not known to exist, hence claiming that one is"Jain" and the other "Buddhist" is essentially fantasy.) Either you don't kill any living beings (which is impossible, because it's what keeps your body alive), or you accept that your physical presence means death to numerous other living beings. Necessarily so.

There's another level on which the whole argument is simply wrong. People discussing death of insects usually (not always, but usually) replace LIVING Buddhism with Buddhist IDEAS. One's alive, it's practice anchored in reality. It accepts that the world is inherently ambiguous and that there are no ultimate rules as to what is and will always be valid. Obviously, that's no excuse for sloppy morals, rather it's acceptance that we have no full control over the world. The other is concepts, i.e. thinking about reality, that have replaced the living relationship with being. Not harming insects is of course a moral thing to do. Accepting that they take over your house is stupidity.
There's a difference in the intention of the act of killing. Eating a meal that unknowingly kills some unknown amount of bacteria is not the same intention as knowingly but regretfully killing a roach in your home, which is different in intention from purposefully squishing an ant or caterpillar in the park for fun and enjoyment.
Exactly. We cannot control the fact that samsara involves constant killing, but we can adjust how and whether we benefit from other beings suffering, as well as trying to help beings where we can. It's less a question of black and white actions, and more one of overall effect nad many different actions and intention.
Perhaps keep ourselves healthy and let the bacteria benefit us/each other to get the merit of helping(even though there may include some sacrifices...)?

tingdzin
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by tingdzin » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:20 am

In a few years we will probably all be looking back on the "good old days" when we had the leisure and inclination to debate whether bacteria are sentient.

Varis
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Re: Insects practice?

Post by Varis » Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:02 pm

fckw wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:53 pm
The argument, this be "Jain" but not "Buddhist" view is even more absurd, it's actually hilarious to me. It goes without saying that some thousands of years ago bacteria were not known to exist, hence claiming that one is"Jain" and the other "Buddhist" is essentially fantasy.
Ancient Indians postulated the existence of microorganisms thousands of years ago. The Jain's call them "nigoda", and claimed they are sentient beings, this is why Jain's avoid eating potatoes and garlic. There is absolutely no reason to treat bacteria as sentient beings unless you can prove they're sentient and capable of suffering.

Ahimsa is about refraining from harming sentient beings, not living beings. Otherwise we would refrain from picking vegetables too.

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