The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Discuss the application of the Dharma to situations of social, political, environmental and economic suffering and injustice.
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Does propaganda of the law of karma contribute to the obedience of the masses?

yes
4
57%
no
1
14%
yes and no
1
14%
other
1
14%
 
Total votes: 7

Viach
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The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Viach » Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:39 pm

Does propaganda of the law of karma contribute to the obedience of the masses? (especially in undemocratic regimes)

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well wisher
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by well wisher » Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:15 pm

As history already shown, any systems can be abused by extremists authoritarians / dictators, so that includes the concept of Karma and courts & justice system, and financial systems as well.
The question of fairness and responsible freedom always needs to be asked - ideally no one should be above the law, but we know this is not the case in real life, as there are many under-table secret deals and hidden corruptions & scandals that often goes uncaught and un-reported. And no freedom means cruelty.

I believe the true Karma system describes the cause and effect of each person's actions towards other objects or sentient beings as well as self, like a inter-personal relationships system, but on a personal case-by-case basis.
It should not mandated or controlled by any government, it cannot be feasibly properly enforceable anyways, as the system is too complex, and everybody's standards are different.
You own actions shall be your own judge - you control your own destiny in the end.

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Queequeg
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Queequeg » Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:27 pm

karma has been used to construct social orders that segregate people with varying impacts.

See: Indian caste systems; burakumin in Japan.

It also informs admirable behavior depending on interpretation and application.

Give people enough time and they'll turn any idea into a means to assert dominance over others.
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

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Thu Aug 15, 2019 2:01 am

Viach wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:39 pm
Does propaganda of the law of karma contribute to the obedience of the masses? (especially in undemocratic regimes)
Just like favor/disfavor of God can used to this end in societies subscribing to Abrahamic beliefs, some societies indeed have used elements of Karma as a reason to do terrible things, avoid helping others, etc..

This should be completely unsurprising, and is a reflection of the nature of samsara, not Dharma. The question is asking "do people misuse ideas", do you even need someone to answer that?
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Könchok Thrinley
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Könchok Thrinley » Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:32 am

Karma can be easily misunderstood. Just look at the way it is currently misunderstood in the west. It supports rejoicing in bad luck/failure/tragedy of others who have been bad. Which ofcourse from a buddhist POV is not good. Also its various overly fatalistic interpretations can be seen around the world especially in India, where (if I am correct) it was/is one of the pillars for caste system.
“Observing samaya involves to remain inseparable from the union of wisdom and compassion at all times, to sustain mindfulness, and to put into practice the guru’s instructions”. Garchen Rinpoche

Formerly known as Miroku.

shaunc
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by shaunc » Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:48 am

All religious teachings can be used to control the masses.

Viach
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Viach » Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:59 am

I live in an authoritarian regime and see a lot of illegal actions of the authorities. On the one hand, I can reassure myself with the law of karma (because, according to this law, anyone cannot experience undeserved injustice), on the other hand, I see political prisoners, not admitting opposition candidates, etc., against which the bodhisattva seems to be obliged to fight. How to solve this dilemma?

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Könchok Thrinley
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Könchok Thrinley » Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:24 pm

Viach wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:59 am
I live in an authoritarian regime and see a lot of illegal actions of the authorities. On the one hand, I can reassure myself with the law of karma (because, according to this law, anyone cannot experience undeserved injustice), on the other hand, I see political prisoners, not admitting opposition candidates, etc., against which the bodhisattva seems to be obliged to fight. How to solve this dilemma?
Sometimes the best thing is to rise up and fight. Sometimes it is better to sit down and do the real hard work which is bring about love and compassion in your heart.

I mean, there are many things one can do and in times of violent oppression, when lies are being told and opposition is dealt with violently, the biggest weapon can be calm mind, loving heart and ethical living. Be an island of positive deviation.
“Observing samaya involves to remain inseparable from the union of wisdom and compassion at all times, to sustain mindfulness, and to put into practice the guru’s instructions”. Garchen Rinpoche

Formerly known as Miroku.

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Queequeg
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Queequeg » Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:07 pm

Viach wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:59 am
I live in an authoritarian regime and see a lot of illegal actions of the authorities. On the one hand, I can reassure myself with the law of karma (because, according to this law, anyone cannot experience undeserved injustice), on the other hand, I see political prisoners, not admitting opposition candidates, etc., against which the bodhisattva seems to be obliged to fight. How to solve this dilemma?
I don't think anyone on the outside looking in can offer you any good advice. You and your fellow citizens are going to have to figure that one out. When is it appropriate to work below the gaze of authorities to undermine their authority? When is it appropriate to emerge and oppose the authorities openly? And with what strategies? Political? Civil disobedience? Violent insurrection?

I don't think anyone can assess the lay of the land before you. I don't think anyone can tell you the best path forward or tell you what kind of sacrifices you should make. You have to tap into your wisdom.

May liberty roll forth for you quickly, with minimum suffering on the road to there.
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

Viach
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Re: The law of karma as a means of humility with injustice (social, political, etc.)

Post by Viach » Wed Aug 21, 2019 12:53 pm

Moreover, many of my familiar bodhisattvas like the authoritarian regime in which we (I and they) live. It may well be that I will go to a peaceful demonstration, and one of my familiar bodhisattvas will beat me with a baton, wring my hands, judge and put me in prison, etc. And then, maybe we will do collective practices together. And what about this?

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