Charging for Dharma

Forum for discussion of Tibetan Buddhism. Questions specific to one school are best posted in the appropriate sub-forum.
Locked
Crazywisdom
Posts: 1725
Joined: Fri May 23, 2014 5:48 pm

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Crazywisdom » Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:12 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:24 pm
Nemo wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:12 pm
Old days teachers gave too much. Now many in the new generation treat it like a business. Some can't wait to get upstairs and count the money.

Did the Buddha charge for teachings? Probably not considering he forbade monks from touching money. Capitalism is a revolutionary force. Everything has a value in money and the thought that something can't have a price put on it is scandalous. The solution is of course to squeeze money out of people to be taught something no one owns that is the birthright of every sentient being. How will we charge the birds that hear the tinkling bells on the stupa? They are stealing the blessing for free!
How we forget:

"Then Vairocana and Legdrup offered Shri Singha a two pints of gold dust and a finger sized golden ingot and made a request, “The king of Tibet has comprehended the Dharma of cause and result. Since he has send us to seek the Dharma that transcends cause and result, please grant our request for the Dharma beyond cause and effect.”

Lets see, two pints of gold dust costs approximately $40,000 in todays money. Guess those Indian masters were really scandalous...and they had not even received any teachings...
So gold is like $1300/oz today. 1 gold coin = 1 oz. The price of a Roman senators robes, one gold coin. The price of a quality men’s suit fit for the Senate, about $1,300 including shoes and belt.

Price of dharma $40,000. I paid that a few times. So... nothing has changed. So figure, that $100 you paid? What do you think you got? One of the transmissions is received was told it was worth $1.000,000
I got my Chili Chilaya.

User avatar
Queequeg
Global Moderator
Posts: 6387
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:24 pm

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Queequeg » Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:26 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:00 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:55 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:24 pm


How we forget:

"Then Vairocana and Legdrup offered Shri Singha a two pints of gold dust and a finger sized golden ingot and made a request, “The king of Tibet has comprehended the Dharma of cause and result. Since he has send us to seek the Dharma that transcends cause and result, please grant our request for the Dharma beyond cause and effect.”

Lets see, two pints of gold dust costs approximately $40,000 in todays money. Guess those Indian masters were really scandalous...and they had not even received any teachings...
I don't think you guys are talking about the same "old days."
I think here we are talking about Vajrayāna teachings.
You are. Nemo seems to be conflating things - he apparently refers to vajrayana but then also to the Buddha - different old days, I'd say.

Just pointing that out before this imprecision leads to disagreements.

But it may be worth fleshing this out -

Vajrayana communities are not organized on the same principles as Theravada and Mahayana communities. Some of these expectations about how a Vajrayana teacher or community ought to be may mistakenly take Theravada and Mahayana ideals as the standard.
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

User avatar
Queequeg
Global Moderator
Posts: 6387
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:24 pm

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Queequeg » Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:37 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:11 pm
Nemo wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:12 pm
Did the Buddha charge for teachings?
People donated vast tracts of land to the Buddha. If westerners donated vast tracts of land to teachers and centers then maybe they wouldn't have to charge as much since one of the major expenses (rent) would be negated.

Do you want to donate some land?
The comparison with the Buddha is hard to make... providing for sravakas was more or less built into the socio-economic system at the time. Anathapindika donating the Jeta Grove probably had a lot to do with Buddhism getting established, but before the land was donated, Buddha was itinerant and living on alms only. And the rules about collecting alms shows a lot about treading lightly in the world.

Also, when talking about donating... its not like Buddha got a deed for the Jeta Grove...

Comparing anyone to Buddha is always going to be tough.
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

User avatar
Queequeg
Global Moderator
Posts: 6387
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:24 pm

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Queequeg » Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:50 pm

Quay wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 7:27 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 5:00 pm
Quay wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 12:53 am
There are Dharma paths where the consensus of the group is key...
What Dharma paths are these? Sounds like a rhetorical straw man.
It is not. What you hear is simply something you're not familiar with.

An example of such a path would be one offered at some Zen centers after they dealt with scandals involving abbots and/or senior teachers. For example, the San Francisco Zen Center is very much a kind of republic, if you will, in that there is a governing board that answers to all members and seeks consensus on policy and procedure including things like what to teach and when. They also set policy as regards donations, memberships, event charges, etc.
Not particularly conducive to having a discussion when we assume what the other sees/hears/knows...

I get what you're saying. I wouldn't quite say that SFZC is a consensus driven Dharma path, but that's semantics.
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

User avatar
Nemo
Posts: 887
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 3:23 am
Location: Canada

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Nemo » Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:03 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:24 pm
Lets see, two pints of gold dust costs approximately $40,000 in todays money.
So that is what Dharma teachings are worth? Is that their exact monetary value? Or would a billion dollars still be too little? You just proved my point.

Grigoris wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:11 pm
Nemo wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:12 pm
Did the Buddha charge for teachings?
People donated vast tracts of land to the Buddha. If westerners donated vast tracts of land to teachers and centers then maybe they wouldn't have to charge as much since one of the major expenses (rent) would be negated.

Do you want to donate some land?
I have. And years of my life. And large amounts of useless bits of paper people think are valuable. Turning Dharma into a product to sell is a bad road. I already see the effects in my lifetime.

I want to buy the sky. How much? Ok, that's too much how much for just the moon?
Last edited by Nemo on Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Nyedrag Yeshe
Posts: 469
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:06 am
Location: Brazil

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Nyedrag Yeshe » Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:30 pm

Milarepa said to Marpa, “I have created heavy negative karma, so I have now come to practice Dharma. I have nothing to offer you but my body, speech and mind. Please give me the Dharma and also food and clothing.” Milarepa asked for food and clothing because he didn’t have anything at all.
“Whatever has to happen, let it happen!”
“Whatever the situation is, it’s fine!”
“I really don’t need anything!
~Tsangpa Gyare Yeshe Dorje (1161-1211)
ओं पद्मोष्णीष विमले हूँ फट । ओं हनुफशभरहृदय स्वाहा॥
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔ ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།

User avatar
Virgo
Global Moderator
Posts: 3480
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 3:47 am
Location: Uni-verse

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Virgo » Sat Aug 04, 2018 12:02 am

Nyedrag Yeshe wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:30 pm
Milarepa said to Marpa, “I have created heavy negative karma, so I have now come to practice Dharma. I have nothing to offer you but my body, speech and mind. Please give me the Dharma and also food and clothing.” Milarepa asked for food and clothing because he didn’t have anything at all.
He had karma.

Kevin...

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 28527
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Malcolm » Sat Aug 04, 2018 12:05 am

Nemo wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:03 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:24 pm
Lets see, two pints of gold dust costs approximately $40,000 in todays money.
So that is what Dharma teachings are worth? Is that their exact monetary value?
It is an example. Rwa Lotsawa had a menu on his door, this much for the wang, this much for the sadhana, this much for the instruction, and so on. But on the other hand, no one says you have to pay the initiation fee for this or that teaching demanded this by or that guru. You are free to pass up any teachings you don't feel inclined to pay for.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 28527
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Malcolm » Sat Aug 04, 2018 12:08 am

Nyedrag Yeshe wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:30 pm
Milarepa said to Marpa, “I have created heavy negative karma, so I have now come to practice Dharma. I have nothing to offer you but my body, speech and mind. Please give me the Dharma and also food and clothing.” Milarepa asked for food and clothing because he didn’t have anything at all.
Yes, and Marpa taught Milarepa nothing for years...
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

haha
Posts: 197
Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 3:30 pm

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by haha » Sat Aug 04, 2018 12:12 am

They all did prostrations and offered one drey of gold dust. Master Padma said, "Give me some morel" The emissaries stripped off their clothes and offered them, but the master again said, "Still give me whatever you have!"

The emissaries replied, ''The king did not supply us with more than this. Also we do not have any more ourselves, so now we offer you our body, speech, and mind in your service." They then made prostrations and circumambulated Master Padma and placed his foot at the crown of their heads.

The master was pleased by this and said, "I was checking whether or not the faith of Tibetans is fickle. For me all appearances are gold." While saying this he stretched out his right arm in the direction of Sky Plain in Mang-yul, and the mountains on the left side shifted to the right. When he stretched his left arm to the west, the earth and rocks all turned into zi stones, agate, coral, gold, and turquoise, some of which he gave to the emissaries. Assuming a gaze, he made the sun and moon sink to the ground and, with a threatening gesture, he made the river reverse its flow. "This is the type of miraculous power and ability I possess! You should have trust in this. I have no need for your gold, but in order to fulfill the king' s aspiration and to allow him to gain merit, I should keep some." Saying that, Master Padma flung some gold toward Mang-yul and Nepal. "Later, Tibetan gold will be plentiful in the areas of Mangyul and the direction of Nepal."

Translated by Erik Perna Kunsang, "The Lotus-Born: The Life Story of Padmasambhava"
There are so many stories about gold throwing on the air.

In this world hatred never ceases with hatred
With non hatred it ceases, this is the ancient lore.

Upakilesasuttaṃ

User avatar
Virgo
Global Moderator
Posts: 3480
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 3:47 am
Location: Uni-verse

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Virgo » Sat Aug 04, 2018 12:14 am

I haven't really participated thus far because this is an extremely impractical discussion. Fact: people charge to give teachings. Fact: some will charge a lot and some will charge a little. Fact: some that charge a lot will let some in at little or no charge, some that do not charge a lot will lets some in at little or no charge. Nothing said in this discussion will change that. Moving ahead any day now...

Kevin...

User avatar
Johnny Dangerous
Global Moderator
Posts: 8346
Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:58 pm
Location: Olympia WA
Contact:

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Sat Aug 04, 2018 12:41 am

Yep, we're done.
"it must be coming from the mouthy mastermind of raunchy rapper, Johnny Dangerous”

-Jeff H.

User avatar
Grigoris
Global Moderator
Posts: 17987
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Charging for Dharma

Post by Grigoris » Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:20 pm

"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Locked

Return to “Tibetan Buddhism”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Anders, heart, yan kong and 68 guests