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Companionship With The Wise by Dr. R.L. Soni

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  • antony272b2
    The suttas warn one against companionship with bad people in this way: because of bad company one gives ear to evil advice; because of such advice evil
    Message 1 of 9 , Feb 1, 2011
      "The suttas warn one against companionship with bad people in this way:
      because of bad company one gives ear to evil advice;
      because of such advice evil reflections occupy the mind;
      because of such reflections mental confusion prevails
      and the senses are uncontrolled;
      as a result of this,
      actions of body and speech are faulty
      and the five hindrances gain strength
      holding one to sensual cravings and resulting in sufferings.

      On the other hand,
      through companionship with the wise the sequence is:
      listening to good advice,
      rational faith,
      noble thoughts,
      clear thinking,
      self-control,
      good conduct,
      conquest of the hindrances,
      gaining of wisdom and the consequent liberation."
      http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/soni/wheel254.html
      From: Life's Highest Blessings
      The Maha Mangala Sutta
      Translation and Commentary by Dr. R.L. Soni
      revised by Bhikkhu Khantipalo
      For Free Distribution, as a gift of Dhamma, from Access to Insight and the Buddhist Publication Society http://www.bps.lk

      With metta / Antony.
    • antony272b2
      One thing we can do to bring more metta into our lives is to look at the effects of our everyday actions. We all tend to see ourselves as consumers these
      Message 2 of 9 , Nov 15, 2011
        "One thing we can do to bring more metta into our lives is to look at the effects of our everyday actions. We all tend to see ourselves as consumers these days, but we often don't consider that what and how we consume has truly global effects. If we want to develop the quality of metta, then it makes sense to look at what effects our actions have.

        Of course we'd sometimes rather not know what consequences our actions have. Ignorance is bliss, right? (Well, if not exactly blissful, ignorance can be a way of avoiding taking responsibility). Once we are aware of the consequences of our actions, then we are faced with choices about how to respond. We have to deal with the discomfort that our conscience presents us with if those actions aren't congruent with our ethical compass. So remember that you have choices here. You may choose to skip this section, for example, although I hope you don't.

        Much of our consumerism causes harm. We can't possibly avoid causing harm at all, but we can become aware of the consequences of our consumerism and make choices that cause less harm. It's not a black and white, either/or set of choices we're working with here. It's more a question of worse/better or more harmful/less harmful.

        Metta, meat, and vegetarianism

        One of the main areas in which we can make a difference is that of food. We're talking meat here (or not meat). It's undeniable that eating meat causes harm to the animals that are killed for us. And in addition there's a large amount of ecological damage that is done in order to feed those animals. A hugely disproportionate amount of grain, soybeans, and water goes to feed cattle in the West. This particular use of resources is highly wasteful. It takes a lot of grain and soybeans to make a pound of cow. It would be much more efficient if we cut out the animal and fed ourselves on plant proteins. It's perfectly simple, feasible, and healthy to do this. We may have to buy a recipe book or two to get some ideas for what to cook. But once we've done it we'll end up with a diet that is cheaper, probably more interesting and varied, and almost certainly healthier than a diet containing meat. (I go into these arguments in more detail in my book, "Vegetarianism").

        If you don't think you can give up meat altogether, then try cutting down. You might find that's a first step towards vegetarianism, or you might just stick there. If you do end up going no further then at least by cutting down on the amount of meat you eat you'll have had some effect on reducing the amount of suffering in the world. Eating only organic meat would be another positive step.

        We're encouraged in many ways throughout our lives to dismiss the sufferings of animals as irrelevant or unimportant, or to think that animals have a pretty nice life on a farm (cartoon chickens on TV adverts, rather improbably, are always smiling). Actually, life on modern farms is stressful and painful. As a student, I worked on pig, dairy, and sheep farms, and saw at first hand how painful life can be for domestic animals. An animal's pain is as real to it as yours is to you. And perhaps in some ways it is worse, since animals do not have the consolations of philosophy.

        Going a step further

        If you're already a vegetarian then you could consider becoming vegan, or even just eating less dairy products and eggs. The production of milk and eggs also involves suffering. I've been a vegan for several years now and I've never felt healthier. I hardly ever get a cold (even when everyone else seems to be coming down with them) and when I do get ill it passes very quickly.

        Another step most of us can take is to eat more organic food (food grown without artificial fertilizers, insecticides, and weed killers). This has beneficial effects not only on your body but for the environment as well, since artificial compounds can linger in the food chain for many years. Of course it's more expensive to eat organic food, but at least we can buy some organic food from time to time. Remember that we're not talking black and white here. We're talking about degrees of suffering and harm that can be avoided.
        Becoming a responsible consumer

        You can look at other purchases you make. Where are the clothes you buy made? Are they produced in sweatshop conditions, or using child labor? If they do, then perhaps you could write to a company and tell them you disapprove of their employment practices.

        And there is transportation, and the effect of carbon dioxide and other emissions. These are all things that we can think about. Perhaps we can carpool (some days at least), or take public transport, or cycle, or buy a more fuel-efficient vehicle.

        These are just a few suggestions of course. Each of our lives is different, and each of us needs to look at his or her own life and see what implications the practice and cultivation of metta has."
        http://www.wildmind.org/applied/daily-life/metta-diet-and-lifestyle
        Copyright © 2000 - 2011 Wildmind

        With metta / Antony.
      • Jim Jamison
        Antony, while I support your choice to be vegetarian, Dharma does not require it, the Buddha did not teach it, and much of the Sangha worldwide does not
        Message 3 of 9 , Nov 17, 2011
          Antony, while I support your choice to be vegetarian, Dharma does not require it, the Buddha did not teach it, and much of the Sangha worldwide does not practice it. Your choice is laudible, in that you desire to reduce suffering, but your personal choices should not be presented as Dharma. Thank you. Be well and be happy.


          Jim Jamison
          jimbodhi@...




          -----Original Message-----
          From: antony272b2 <antony272b@...>
          To: Buddhaviharas <Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Tue, Nov 15, 2011 6:17 pm
          Subject: [Buddhaviharas] Metta, Diet & Lifestyle by Bodhipaksa





          "One thing we can do to bring more metta into our lives is to look at the effects of our everyday actions. We all tend to see ourselves as consumers these days, but we often don't consider that what and how we consume has truly global effects. If we want to develop the quality of metta, then it makes sense to look at what effects our actions have.

          Of course we'd sometimes rather not know what consequences our actions have. Ignorance is bliss, right? (Well, if not exactly blissful, ignorance can be a way of avoiding taking responsibility). Once we are aware of the consequences of our actions, then we are faced with choices about how to respond. We have to deal with the discomfort that our conscience presents us with if those actions aren't congruent with our ethical compass. So remember that you have choices here. You may choose to skip this section, for example, although I hope you don't.

          Much of our consumerism causes harm. We can't possibly avoid causing harm at all, but we can become aware of the consequences of our consumerism and make choices that cause less harm. It's not a black and white, either/or set of choices we're working with here. It's more a question of worse/better or more harmful/less harmful.

          Metta, meat, and vegetarianism

          One of the main areas in which we can make a difference is that of food. We're talking meat here (or not meat). It's undeniable that eating meat causes harm to the animals that are killed for us. And in addition there's a large amount of ecological damage that is done in order to feed those animals. A hugely disproportionate amount of grain, soybeans, and water goes to feed cattle in the West. This particular use of resources is highly wasteful. It takes a lot of grain and soybeans to make a pound of cow. It would be much more efficient if we cut out the animal and fed ourselves on plant proteins. It's perfectly simple, feasible, and healthy to do this. We may have to buy a recipe book or two to get some ideas for what to cook. But once we've done it we'll end up with a diet that is cheaper, probably more interesting and varied, and almost certainly healthier than a diet containing meat. (I go into these arguments in more detail in my book, "Vegetarianism").

          If you don't think you can give up meat altogether, then try cutting down. You might find that's a first step towards vegetarianism, or you might just stick there. If you do end up going no further then at least by cutting down on the amount of meat you eat you'll have had some effect on reducing the amount of suffering in the world. Eating only organic meat would be another positive step.

          We're encouraged in many ways throughout our lives to dismiss the sufferings of animals as irrelevant or unimportant, or to think that animals have a pretty nice life on a farm (cartoon chickens on TV adverts, rather improbably, are always smiling). Actually, life on modern farms is stressful and painful. As a student, I worked on pig, dairy, and sheep farms, and saw at first hand how painful life can be for domestic animals. An animal's pain is as real to it as yours is to you. And perhaps in some ways it is worse, since animals do not have the consolations of philosophy.

          Going a step further

          If you're already a vegetarian then you could consider becoming vegan, or even just eating less dairy products and eggs. The production of milk and eggs also involves suffering. I've been a vegan for several years now and I've never felt healthier. I hardly ever get a cold (even when everyone else seems to be coming down with them) and when I do get ill it passes very quickly.

          Another step most of us can take is to eat more organic food (food grown without artificial fertilizers, insecticides, and weed killers). This has beneficial effects not only on your body but for the environment as well, since artificial compounds can linger in the food chain for many years. Of course it's more expensive to eat organic food, but at least we can buy some organic food from time to time. Remember that we're not talking black and white here. We're talking about degrees of suffering and harm that can be avoided.
          Becoming a responsible consumer

          You can look at other purchases you make. Where are the clothes you buy made? Are they produced in sweatshop conditions, or using child labor? If they do, then perhaps you could write to a company and tell them you disapprove of their employment practices.

          And there is transportation, and the effect of carbon dioxide and other emissions. These are all things that we can think about. Perhaps we can carpool (some days at least), or take public transport, or cycle, or buy a more fuel-efficient vehicle.

          These are just a few suggestions of course. Each of our lives is different, and each of us needs to look at his or her own life and see what implications the practice and cultivation of metta has."
          http://www.wildmind.org/applied/daily-life/metta-diet-and-lifestyle
          Copyright © 2000 - 2011 Wildmind

          With metta / Antony.









          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • sharon werner
          A valid point to be sure, though I don t think Antony is presenting this as his personal choice, but excerpting from another author s writings. Thich Nhat
          Message 4 of 9 , Nov 17, 2011
            A valid point to be sure, though I don't think Antony is presenting this as his personal choice, but excerpting from another author's writings. Thich Nhat Hanh's sangha across the world practices or promotes vegetarianism, as do many Western sanghas. It is interesting that many traditional Buddhist countries do not.

            It is an interesting area for discussion.

            In lovingkindness,

            Sharon

            --- In Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com, Jim Jamison <Jimbodhi@...> wrote:
            >
            > Antony, while I support your choice to be vegetarian, Dharma does not require it, the Buddha did not teach it, and much of the Sangha worldwide does not practice it. Your choice is laudible, in that you desire to reduce suffering, but your personal choices should not be presented as Dharma. Thank you. Be well and be happy.
            >
            >
            > Jim Jamison
            > jimbodhi@...
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > -----Original Message-----
            > From: antony272b2 <antony272b@...>
            > To: Buddhaviharas <Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com>
            > Sent: Tue, Nov 15, 2011 6:17 pm
            > Subject: [Buddhaviharas] Metta, Diet & Lifestyle by Bodhipaksa
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > "One thing we can do to bring more metta into our lives is to look at the effects of our everyday actions. We all tend to see ourselves as consumers these days, but we often don't consider that what and how we consume has truly global effects. If we want to develop the quality of metta, then it makes sense to look at what effects our actions have.
            >
            > Of course we'd sometimes rather not know what consequences our actions have. Ignorance is bliss, right? (Well, if not exactly blissful, ignorance can be a way of avoiding taking responsibility). Once we are aware of the consequences of our actions, then we are faced with choices about how to respond. We have to deal with the discomfort that our conscience presents us with if those actions aren't congruent with our ethical compass. So remember that you have choices here. You may choose to skip this section, for example, although I hope you don't.
            >
            > Much of our consumerism causes harm. We can't possibly avoid causing harm at all, but we can become aware of the consequences of our consumerism and make choices that cause less harm. It's not a black and white, either/or set of choices we're working with here. It's more a question of worse/better or more harmful/less harmful.
            >
            > Metta, meat, and vegetarianism
            >
            > One of the main areas in which we can make a difference is that of food. We're talking meat here (or not meat). It's undeniable that eating meat causes harm to the animals that are killed for us. And in addition there's a large amount of ecological damage that is done in order to feed those animals. A hugely disproportionate amount of grain, soybeans, and water goes to feed cattle in the West. This particular use of resources is highly wasteful. It takes a lot of grain and soybeans to make a pound of cow. It would be much more efficient if we cut out the animal and fed ourselves on plant proteins. It's perfectly simple, feasible, and healthy to do this. We may have to buy a recipe book or two to get some ideas for what to cook. But once we've done it we'll end up with a diet that is cheaper, probably more interesting and varied, and almost certainly healthier than a diet containing meat. (I go into these arguments in more detail in my book, "Vegetarianism").
            >
            > If you don't think you can give up meat altogether, then try cutting down. You might find that's a first step towards vegetarianism, or you might just stick there. If you do end up going no further then at least by cutting down on the amount of meat you eat you'll have had some effect on reducing the amount of suffering in the world. Eating only organic meat would be another positive step.
            >
            > We're encouraged in many ways throughout our lives to dismiss the sufferings of animals as irrelevant or unimportant, or to think that animals have a pretty nice life on a farm (cartoon chickens on TV adverts, rather improbably, are always smiling). Actually, life on modern farms is stressful and painful. As a student, I worked on pig, dairy, and sheep farms, and saw at first hand how painful life can be for domestic animals. An animal's pain is as real to it as yours is to you. And perhaps in some ways it is worse, since animals do not have the consolations of philosophy.
            >
            > Going a step further
            >
            > If you're already a vegetarian then you could consider becoming vegan, or even just eating less dairy products and eggs. The production of milk and eggs also involves suffering. I've been a vegan for several years now and I've never felt healthier. I hardly ever get a cold (even when everyone else seems to be coming down with them) and when I do get ill it passes very quickly.
            >
            > Another step most of us can take is to eat more organic food (food grown without artificial fertilizers, insecticides, and weed killers). This has beneficial effects not only on your body but for the environment as well, since artificial compounds can linger in the food chain for many years. Of course it's more expensive to eat organic food, but at least we can buy some organic food from time to time. Remember that we're not talking black and white here. We're talking about degrees of suffering and harm that can be avoided.
            > Becoming a responsible consumer
            >
            > You can look at other purchases you make. Where are the clothes you buy made? Are they produced in sweatshop conditions, or using child labor? If they do, then perhaps you could write to a company and tell them you disapprove of their employment practices.
            >
            > And there is transportation, and the effect of carbon dioxide and other emissions. These are all things that we can think about. Perhaps we can carpool (some days at least), or take public transport, or cycle, or buy a more fuel-efficient vehicle.
            >
            > These are just a few suggestions of course. Each of our lives is different, and each of us needs to look at his or her own life and see what implications the practice and cultivation of metta has."
            > http://www.wildmind.org/applied/daily-life/metta-diet-and-lifestyle
            > Copyright © 2000 - 2011 Wildmind
            >
            > With metta / Antony.
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
          • antony272b2
            Hello Jim, Sharon, all, Thanks for the feedback. Yes actually I am not a vegetarian. My next-door neighbor is a butcher and invited me to dinner asking if a
            Message 5 of 9 , Nov 18, 2011
              Hello Jim, Sharon, all,

              Thanks for the feedback. Yes actually I am not a vegetarian. My next-door neighbor is a butcher and invited me to dinner asking if a roast dinner was okay. Buddhism recommends accepting food that is offered. Sometimes I have a vegetarian meal if I am on my own. Even vegans are not completely pure: I've heard for example that one hundred ants are killed for every stalk of broccoli.

              Bodhipaksa, although a vegetarian, made this point in the article:

              "If you don't think you can give up meat altogether, then try cutting down. You might find that's a first step towards vegetarianism, or you might just stick there. If you do end up going no further then at least by cutting down on the amount of meat you eat you'll have had some effect on reducing the amount of suffering in the world. Eating only organic meat would be another positive step."

              With metta / Antony.

              To: Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com
              From: Jimbodhi@...
              Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2011 13:35:29 -0500
              Subject: Re: [Buddhaviharas] Metta, Diet & Lifestyle by Bodhipaksa

              Antony, while I support your choice to be vegetarian, Dharma does not require it, the Buddha did not teach it, and much of the Sangha worldwide does not practice it. Your choice is laudible, in that you desire to reduce suffering, but your personal choices should not be presented as Dharma. Thank you. Be well and be happy.

              Jim Jamison
              jimbodhi@...

              -----Original Message-----
              From: antony272b2 <antony272b@...>
              To: Buddhaviharas <Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Tue, Nov 15, 2011 6:17 pm
              Subject: [Buddhaviharas] Metta, Diet & Lifestyle by Bodhipaksa

              "One thing we can do to bring more metta into our lives is to look at the effects of our everyday actions. We all tend to see ourselves as consumers these days, but we often don't consider that what and how we consume has truly global effects. If we want to develop the quality of metta, then it makes sense to look at what effects our actions have.

              Of course we'd sometimes rather not know what consequences our actions have. Ignorance is bliss, right? (Well, if not exactly blissful, ignorance can be a way of avoiding taking responsibility). Once we are aware of the consequences of our actions, then we are faced with choices about how to respond. We have to deal with the discomfort that our conscience presents us with if those actions aren't congruent with our ethical compass. So remember that you have choices here. You may choose to skip this section, for example, although I hope you don't.

              Much of our consumerism causes harm. We can't possibly avoid causing harm at all, but we can become aware of the consequences of our consumerism and make choices that cause less harm. It's not a black and white, either/or set of choices we're working with here. It's more a question of worse/better or more harmful/less harmful.

              Metta, meat, and vegetarianism

              One of the main areas in which we can make a difference is that of food. We're talking meat here (or not meat). It's undeniable that eating meat causes harm to the animals that are killed for us. And in addition there's a large amount of ecological damage that is done in order to feed those animals. A hugely disproportionate amount of grain, soybeans, and water goes to feed cattle in the West. This particular use of resources is highly wasteful. It takes a lot of grain and soybeans to make a pound of cow. It would be much more efficient if we cut out the animal and fed ourselves on plant proteins. It's perfectly simple, feasible, and healthy to do this. We may have to buy a recipe book or two to get some ideas for what to cook. But once we've done it we'll end up with a diet that is cheaper, probably more interesting and varied, and almost certainly healthier than a diet containing meat. (I go into these arguments in more detail in my book, "Vegetarianism").

              If you don't think you can give up meat altogether, then try cutting down. You might find that's a first step towards vegetarianism, or you might just stick there. If you do end up going no further then at least by cutting down on the amount of meat you eat you'll have had some effect on reducing the amount of suffering in the world. Eating only organic meat would be another positive step.

              We're encouraged in many ways throughout our lives to dismiss the sufferings of animals as irrelevant or unimportant, or to think that animals have a pretty nice life on a farm (cartoon chickens on TV adverts, rather improbably, are always smiling). Actually, life on modern farms is stressful and painful. As a student, I worked on pig, dairy, and sheep farms, and saw at first hand how painful life can be for domestic animals. An animal's pain is as real to it as yours is to you. And perhaps in some ways it is worse, since animals do not have the consolations of philosophy.

              Going a step further

              If you're already a vegetarian then you could consider becoming vegan, or even just eating less dairy products and eggs. The production of milk and eggs also involves suffering. I've been a vegan for several years now and I've never felt healthier. I hardly ever get a cold (even when everyone else seems to be coming down with them) and when I do get ill it passes very quickly.

              Another step most of us can take is to eat more organic food (food grown without artificial fertilizers, insecticides, and weed killers). This has beneficial effects not only on your body but for the environment as well, since artificial compounds can linger in the food chain for many years. Of course it's more expensive to eat organic food, but at least we can buy some organic food from time to time. Remember that we're not talking black and white here. We're talking about degrees of suffering and harm that can be avoided.

              Becoming a responsible consumer

              You can look at other purchases you make. Where are the clothes you buy made? Are they produced in sweatshop conditions, or using child labor? If they do, then perhaps you could write to a company and tell them you disapprove of their employment practices.

              And there is transportation, and the effect of carbon dioxide and other emissions. These are all things that we can think about. Perhaps we can carpool (some days at least), or take public transport, or cycle, or buy a more fuel-efficient vehicle.

              These are just a few suggestions of course. Each of our lives is different, and each of us needs to look at his or her own life and see what implications the practice and cultivation of metta has."
              http://www.wildmind.org/applied/daily-life/metta-diet-and-lifestyle
              Copyright © 2000 - 2011 Wildmind

              With metta / Antony.
            • antony272b2
              The suttas warn one against companionship with bad people in this way: because of bad company one gives ear to evil advice; because of such advice evil
              Message 6 of 9 , Nov 24, 2012
                "The suttas warn one against companionship with bad people in this way:
                because of bad company one gives ear to evil advice;
                because of such advice evil reflections occupy the mind;
                because of such reflections mental confusion prevails
                and the senses are uncontrolled;
                as a result of this,
                actions of body and speech are faulty
                and the five hindrances gain strength
                holding one to sensual cravings and resulting in sufferings.

                On the other hand,
                through companionship with the wise the sequence is:
                listening to good advice,
                rational faith,
                noble thoughts,
                clear thinking,
                self-control,
                good conduct,
                conquest of the hindrances,
                gaining of wisdom and the consequent liberation."
                http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/soni/wheel254.html
                From: Life's Highest Blessings
                The Maha Mangala Sutta
                Translation and Commentary by Dr. R.L. Soni
                revised by Bhikkhu Khantipalo
                For Free Distribution, as a gift of Dhamma, from Access to Insight and the Buddhist Publication Society http://www.bps.lk

                With metta / Antony.
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