Unwholesome friendship?

Help required with personal difficulties.
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Monlam Tharchin
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Unwholesome friendship?

Post by Monlam Tharchin » Sat Jan 23, 2016 6:40 pm

Say you have someone in your life, a friend, who enjoys your company and conversation.
However, their presence and past actions make you regularly feel angry, sad, and sometimes jealous, perhaps even wishing to sever contact.

Is it more fruitful to:
A. Maintain contact as your presence brings them some happiness, and use the opportunity to work with strong defilements you maybe rarely experience.
B. Avoid misleading the person about your side of things, and also avoid sowing future unwholesome karma by dint of these states that you have so far not resolved?

Thank you.

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Unwholesome friendship?

Post by dzogchungpa » Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:52 pm

Monlam Tharchin wrote:Say you have someone in your life, a friend, who enjoys your company and conversation.
However, their presence and past actions make you regularly feel angry, sad, and sometimes jealous, perhaps even wishing to sever contact.
This is how I feel about DW sometimes. :(
If you focus on an object, you are not meditating. - Dudjom Rinpoche

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jundo cohen
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Re: Unwholesome friendship?

Post by jundo cohen » Sun Jan 24, 2016 2:34 am

Monlam Tharchin wrote:Say you have someone in your life, a friend, who enjoys your company and conversation.
However, their presence and past actions make you regularly feel angry, sad, and sometimes jealous, perhaps even wishing to sever contact.

Is it more fruitful to:
A. Maintain contact as your presence brings them some happiness, and use the opportunity to work with strong defilements you maybe rarely experience.
B. Avoid misleading the person about your side of things, and also avoid sowing future unwholesome karma by dint of these states that you have so far not resolved?

Thank you.
Hi Monlam,

I would say to first try to keep your still and quiet center, with equanimity, not letting them get to you. Maybe your subtle peace and stillness will even be a good influence on them over time.

On the other hand, if their anger and jealousy etc. is really more than you feel you can handle, or worse, if you find that it is stimulating like emotions within you and rubbing off, then you may need to back off. The Buddha advised to have wholesome friends who nurture the wholesome in us.

Gassho, Jundo
Priest/Teacher at Treeleaf Zendo, a Soto Zen Sangha. Treeleaf Zendo was designed as an online practice place for Zen practitioners who cannot easily commute to a Zen Center due to health concerns, living in remote areas, or work, childcare and family needs, and seeks to provide Zazen sittings, retreats, discussion, interaction with a teacher, and all other activities of a Zen Buddhist Sangha, all fully online. The focus is Shikantaza "Just Sitting" Zazen as instructed by the 13th Century Japanese Master, Eihei Dogen. http://www.treeleaf.org

SeeLion
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Re: Unwholesome friendship?

Post by SeeLion » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:26 am

However, their presence and past actions make you regularly feel angry, sad, and sometimes jealous, perhaps even wishing to sever contact.
Unless that person purposefully tries to upset you in one way or another, I don't think any of the above is a serious problem.

Now the question to what extent should one maintain friendship with people who are not working together with you to progress on the path, that I have asked myself sometimes and haven't come yet to an answer.

Saoshun
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2014 11:16 pm

Re: Unwholesome friendship?

Post by Saoshun » Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:05 am

The enemy hates the ego, which the seeker wants to kill; thus, like the anvil to the goldsmith, he is actually a friend.

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