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sects

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  • Axel Hinze
    ... For me it s interesting to get an explanation for a common word of a different language of which I am not a native, even more so as I always tend to get a
    Message 1 of 6 , Nov 5, 2003
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      Dear Joyce:

      > A "sect" is usually a group who has taken one portion of a lineage, school
      > or teaching and practices it exclusively.
      > They are "one belief" organizations.

      For me it's interesting to get an explanation for a common word of a
      different language of which I am not a native, even more so as I always tend to get
      a "feeling" and try to understand how the words are used.

      Concerning the "sects" issue, the word is deriven from the Latin language,
      stemming from the same word like "secular" which means that political powers
      are distinct from religious. It is connotates with a fierce separation that
      remains from the need to keep the Catholic church out of politics where those
      people had intervened for centuries (the famous walk to Canossa of the third
      German/Roman Emperor Otto, somewhere in the 900s C.E. to appease the pope
      tells a lot about the story). From the side of the christian churches, especially
      the dear catholics, sectarian or sect has always been a swear word to
      humiliate those who have gone away from mother church (I omit my comments on that
      as it goes too far off topic).

      In Central Europe, where I live, religious groups no matter of what colour,
      especially, if non-christian, but also those fashionable American christian
      groups, als called "sects" to shine a negative light on them in order to warn
      people: "you will lose your money, your free will, your own authority and so
      on if you participate". Things like that have happened, especially in those
      so-called charismatic movements.

      But to use such a word to describe several lineages or traditions of a
      completely different religion is - IMHO - completely inappropriate.

      _()_
      Axel
    • Kindnsruls@aol.com
      In a message dated 11/5/2003 3:32:22 AM Eastern Standard Time, A.Hinze@gmx.net writes: But to use such a word to describe several lineages or traditions of a
      Message 2 of 6 , Nov 5, 2003
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        In a message dated 11/5/2003 3:32:22 AM Eastern Standard Time, A.Hinze@... writes:

        But to use such a word to describe several lineages or traditions of a
        completely different religion is - IMHO - completely inappropriate.
        Thanks for the official definition Axel.......I was just stating the useage I hear in spoken language.....people speak of  traditions, schools, and then often a subdivision of either is referred to as a sect.
        Where in Central Europe are you?
         
         
         
        May All Beings Be Happy.

                    Joyce
      • Axel Hinze
        ... That s what I said: every language uses word differently. For you it s normal, here (for me, in Berlin/Germany) it s an offence. Axel
        Message 3 of 6 , Nov 5, 2003
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          > Thanks for the official definition Axel.......I was just stating the
          > useage I
          > hear in spoken language.....people speak of traditions, schools, and then
          >
          > often a subdivision of either is referred to as a sect.
          > Where in Central Europe are you?

          That's what I said: every language uses word differently. For you it's
          normal, here (for me, in Berlin/Germany) it's an offence.

          Axel
        • Kindnsruls@aol.com
          In a message dated 11/5/2003 11:13:22 AM Eastern Standard Time, A.Hinze@gmx.net writes: That s what I said: every language uses word differently. For you it s
          Message 4 of 6 , Nov 5, 2003
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            In a message dated 11/5/2003 11:13:22 AM Eastern Standard Time, A.Hinze@... writes:

            That's what I said: every language uses word differently. For you it's
            normal, here (for me, in Berlin/Germany) it's an offence.

            Axel
            LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL. :D
            I certainly did not mean to offend you Axel.
             
            (I asked where in Central Europe as I lived for a time in Prague.)
             
            Shall we have a discussion on the word "sect" in Buddhist analytical terms? :D
            Words are only words.
            When we are offended by words it is not the word itself that is offensive.
            Words are empty.
            If the word "sect" were inherently offensive from it's own side than it would always be offensive to anyone who heard it in any situation......just as if wealth caused happiness everyone with wealth would be happy all of the time.....which in both cases we can plainly see is not true.
            When we hear a word..... we then have a reaction either positive, negative, or neutral.
            Whichever of these reactions we have will determine the feeling that arises.
            In this case for "Axel" (the label for the impuned "I" of the being with whom I am communicating) has a negative reaction to "sect" causing afflictive negative emotion.....which could possibly lead to negative thought, speech, and/or action, which would then lead to negative karma.
            Many words carry many differing connotations in many cultures.
            There are words that would be considered offensive in all cultures.
            Nonetheless it is not the word itself that is offensive......but the concept we attach to it, and the reaction to that concept that is offensive/offended.
            The impuned "I" who believes itself to be offended.
            This is the function of the aggregates.
            The basis for our misunderstanding of "self," and reality around us.
             
            Do you agree/disagree?
             
             
            May All Beings Be Happy.

                    Joyce
          • Oelund Fairking
            I think respect should override correctness. Drudche ... it s ... analytical terms? :D ... offensive. ... than it would ... situation......just as if ... the
            Message 5 of 6 , Nov 5, 2003
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              I think respect should override correctness.

              Drudche



              --- In Buddhism_101@yahoogroups.com, Kindnsruls@a... wrote:
              > In a message dated 11/5/2003 11:13:22 AM Eastern Standard Time,
              > A.Hinze@g... writes:
              >
              > That's what I said: every language uses word differently. For you
              it's
              > normal, here (for me, in Berlin/Germany) it's an offence.
              >
              > Axel
              > LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL. :D
              > I certainly did not mean to offend you Axel.
              >
              > (I asked where in Central Europe as I lived for a time in Prague.)
              >
              > Shall we have a discussion on the word "sect" in Buddhist
              analytical terms? :D
              > Words are only words.
              > When we are offended by words it is not the word itself that is
              offensive.
              > Words are empty.
              > If the word "sect" were inherently offensive from it's own side
              than it would
              > always be offensive to anyone who heard it in any
              situation......just as if
              > wealth caused happiness everyone with wealth would be happy all of
              the
              > time.....which in both cases we can plainly see is not true.
              > When we hear a word..... we then have a reaction either positive,
              negative,
              > or neutral.
              > Whichever of these reactions we have will determine the feeling
              that arises.
              > In this case for "Axel" (the label for the impuned "I" of the being
              with whom
              > I am communicating) has a negative reaction to "sect" causing
              afflictive
              > negative emotion.....which could possibly lead to negative thought,
              speech, and/or
              > action, which would then lead to negative karma.
              > Many words carry many differing connotations in many cultures.
              > There are words that would be considered offensive in all cultures.
              > Nonetheless it is not the word itself that is offensive......but
              the concept
              > we attach to it, and the reaction to that concept that is
              offensive/offended.
              > The impuned "I" who believes itself to be offended.
              > This is the function of the aggregates.
              > The basis for our misunderstanding of "self," and reality around us.
              >
              > Do you agree/disagree?
              >
              >
              > May All Beings Be Happy.
              >
              > Joyce
            • Kindnsruls@aol.com
              The next aggregate is called Volitional Formations or Conditioning, Sankhara, and refers to all those states of mind, negative, positive and neutral. It is all
              Message 6 of 6 , Nov 5, 2003
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                The next aggregate is called Volitional Formations or Conditioning, Sankhara, and refers to all those states of mind, negative, positive and neutral. It is all our emotions and moods.  It is in this aggregate that we can say we experience the sufferings and the joys of life.  It is one of the aims of meditation to cleanse this aggregate of all the negative states and move towards those states of mind the Buddha called the Divine Abodes! That is, abiding in loving Kindness, compassion, sympathetic joy and equanimity.

                These volitional conditionings are that part of the mind that reacts to incoming data, sensations and perceptions.  It is very important here for the meditator to grasp what is happening if such negativity is to be undermined.  By negativity here is simply meant all those states of mind that we experience as unpleasant, disagreeable and painful, depression, anxiety, fear, frustration, guilt, sorrow and so on.

                Jack sits in the armchair with a cup of tea after a hard day's work, finally enjoying a bit of peace and quiet. Suddenly through the dividing wall heavy rock comes bursting through from next door. The insistent thud beats its rhythm on Jack's eardrum.  Feelings arise perceived as unpleasant.  This perception of 'noise' sharpens the focus and the reaction arises. This reaction is how Jack has taught himself to respond to such a perception.  He's fuming with anger, more so because he' d asked his neighbours not to play their 'music' so loud.  Now, at first glance, it seems that Jack is justified in his anger.  That his anger is ‘caused' by next door who are not being neighbourly.  But is his anger really caused by their lack of neighbourliness, or by the heavy rock? Or is his anger the way he has taught himself to react when he hears such a 'noise'?

                This is a crucial point and once we've grasped the mechanics here and actually see what is happening within ourselves, we will be able to make great headway in reducing the amount of emotional suffering we bear. This is one of the reasons for meditation, to become more and more aware of our passing moods, how they arise and how they pass away.  This aggregate, translated as volitional formations or volitional conditionings, is precisely so called because these mental states are the product of our own will.  Nobody has made Jack angry.  Nothing at all in fact makes Jack angry.  Jack's anger is his own learnt response, willed by him and him alone.  When Jill, his teenage daughter, comes in, looking for something, she quite unconsciously starts humming the tune, subliminally delighted by that very same 'noise' that Jack, her dad, says ruins his tea!

                Indeed, if anger were caused by an outside object, then we could argue that there must be an object in the world that makes everyone angry as soon as they see or hear it.  But this is not so.  We all have our own conditioning and individual conditionings have their own individual reactions.

                Now you might ask, ‘Well, how is it I get angry even when I don't mean to. If it is really all to do with me conditioning myself, if it is all to do with my will, why don't I have immediate control?’  The fact is that will has conditioned this category of mind.  Habits have been formed.  That part of the mind which contains our emotional reactions and moods has been habituated, trained, conditioned to respond in certain ways.   The first step in undermining this conditioning is to realise for ourselves the role of the  will.  Then we can see clearly that our emotions and moods are truly the result of past acts of will. We then realise that by refusing to will, refusing to entertain these states of mind, they will pass away.

                Jack believes he is right to get angry with his neighbours.  He believes it is justified.  In fact, he's tricked himself into believing that the music and the neighbours themselves are directly causing his anger!  So long as he believes this, every time anger arises because of the music and neighbours, he will indulge that anger.  When he indulges that anger, he is actually saying, ‘Yes I will get angry.’  If only Jack would meditate!  If he did, he would soon come to realise that it is he himself who wills his own anger.  By refusing to will it, to indulge it, he would undermine his own learnt response!  Eventually, he would come to perceive the noise as simply sound!  He may even be influenced by his teenage daughter and come to recognise some musicality.

                When a meditator who has always believed that others were the cause of their anger, depression, stress and so on, realises that they are in fact self-taught responses, a great insight has been made.  For from now on, the state of their mind will come more and more under his personal control. They realise that they can control it, given time and ardent practice. This practice is two fold.  Firstly, not to indulge in any negative states of mind, thereby allowing old conditioning to die out. Secondly, not to will any new negative states of mind, thereby keeping the mind pure. This is a very liberating insight.

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