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Re: [Pali] Re: About suicide in early Buddhism

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  • Piya Tan
    A Singapore friend suggested that with the kind of enthusiasm I have I should change my name to a Western one. I m just wondering :) I m still mystified how my
    Message 1 of 22 , May 19 8:37 PM
      A Singapore friend suggested that with the kind of enthusiasm I have
      I should change my name to a Western one. I'm just wondering :)

      I'm still mystified how my posting has in anyway plugged the flow of
      new insights. As you may have noticed I do not make so many postings
      as I used to.

      My apologies for the over-enthusiasm to the Moderator.

      Piya

      On 5/20/07, Ong Yong Peng <pali.smith@...> wrote:
      >
      > Dear Piya,
      >
      > Happy Vesak.
      >
      > Your extensively researched articles and the effort you put in for
      > them deserve credits. However, that should not plug the flow of new
      > insights.
      >
      > Any post which reach the group can be replied to by any other member,
      > subject to moderation.
      >
      > metta,
      > Yong Peng.
      >
      > --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com <Pali%40yahoogroups.com>, Piya Tan wrote:
      >
      > My article tries to be a digest of the latest discussions on the
      > topic, with special emphasis on the Suttas.
      >
      >
      >


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Ong Yong Peng
      Piya, I thought you meant your article concludes any prevailing discussion. :) My apologies. metta, Yong Peng. ... I m still mystified how my posting has in
      Message 2 of 22 , May 19 8:51 PM
        Piya, I thought you meant your article concludes any prevailing
        discussion. :)

        My apologies.

        metta,
        Yong Peng.


        --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Piya Tan wrote:

        I'm still mystified how my posting has in anyway plugged the flow of
        new insights.

        > Your extensively researched articles and the effort you put in
        > for them deserve credits. However, that should not plug the flow
        > of new insights.

        >> My article tries to be a digest of the latest discussions on the
        >> topic, with special emphasis on the Suttas.
      • Piya Tan
        Yong Peng, I know this is funny (see the :) ): I thought...you thought...such and such. Ironically I am working on just this very fascinating subject: papanca,
        Message 3 of 22 , May 19 9:14 PM
          Yong Peng, I know this is funny (see the :) ): I thought...you
          thought...such and such.

          Ironically I am working on just this very fascinating subject: papanca,
          which is how
          the mind proliferates from a single thought into a tsunami of ideas mostly
          from
          past demons and project them onto others.

          I have also listened to two online audios on papanca by speakers from the
          USA
          Vipassana people, and it's amazing how good they (Donald Rothberg & Rodney
          Smith)
          are in their talks: I am proud of them and I am humbled at the same time.

          My over-enthusiam or perception of it are probably echos of the pains of
          constant
          inroads from the zealous evangelists: the best way to protect the Suttas is
          to talk
          about them. And perhaps a bit of Berkeley, too, where we try to share what
          we think
          is really worthwhile, and we never get put down for it :)

          I think the Internet can be a spiritual connection if we allow it.

          Thanks for understanding.

          Happy Vesak again.

          Piya




          On 5/20/07, Ong Yong Peng <pali.smith@...> wrote:
          >
          > Piya, I thought you meant your article concludes any prevailing
          > discussion. :)
          >
          > My apologies.
          >
          > metta,
          > Yong Peng.
          >
          > --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com <Pali%40yahoogroups.com>, Piya Tan wrote:
          >
          > I'm still mystified how my posting has in anyway plugged the flow of
          > new insights.
          >
          > > Your extensively researched articles and the effort you put in
          > > for them deserve credits. However, that should not plug the flow
          > > of new insights.
          >
          > >> My article tries to be a digest of the latest discussions on the
          > >> topic, with special emphasis on the Suttas.
          >
          >
          >


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Ong Yong Peng
          Dear Piya, thanks for sharing your recent study. When I use the similey :) , I am not trying to be funny, it means I was smiling as I typed at that moment.
          Message 4 of 22 , May 19 9:42 PM
            Dear Piya,

            thanks for sharing your recent study. When I use the similey " :) ", I
            am not trying to be funny, it means I was smiling as I typed at that
            moment. When I wrote "I thought...", it was a mild expression of
            writing "you sounded like...". (so as not to be offensive)

            Perhaps I was struck by a tsunami of ideas when I read your previous
            post, and projected it onto you? How good if we can do that with real
            tsunamis. :-)

            metta,
            Yong Peng.


            --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Piya Tan wrote:

            Yong Peng, I know this is funny (see the :) ): I thought...you
            thought...such and such.
          • Ngawang Dorje
            Hi, Here are some articles: Suicide as A Response to Suffering Michael Attwood
            Message 5 of 22 , May 19 9:57 PM
              Hi,

              Here are some articles:

              Suicide as A Response to Suffering
              Michael Attwood
              http://www.westernbuddhistreview.com/vol4/suicide_as_a_response_to_suffering.html

              Buddhism and Suicide: The Case of Channa
              By Damien Keown
              http://www.buddhistethics.org/3/keown3.html

              Attitudes to Euthanasia in the Vinaya and Commentary
              By Damien Keown
              http://www.buddhistethics.org/6/keown993.html

              Best wishes,
              Rahula


              ---------------------------------
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              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • thomaslaw03
              Dear Piya and Yong Peng, Thank you very much for your replies about my question. Piya s articles are very useful for the topic. Thanks again. Best wishes,
              Message 6 of 22 , May 19 11:16 PM
                Dear Piya and Yong Peng,

                Thank you very much for your replies about my question. Piya's articles
                are very useful for the topic. Thanks again.

                Best wishes,

                Thomas Law
              • Ong Yong Peng
                Thomas, you are welcome. Can you tell us something about yourself, like where you live, and what you do for a living. Thank you. metta, Yong Peng. ... Thank
                Message 7 of 22 , May 20 3:37 AM
                  Thomas,

                  you are welcome. Can you tell us something about yourself, like where
                  you live, and what you do for a living. Thank you.

                  metta,
                  Yong Peng.


                  --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, thomaslaw03 wrote:

                  Thank you very much for your replies about my question.
                • Gunnar Gällmo
                  ... And perhaps somewhat similar to vikings - violent for certain, but not in order to convert others to their own religion. Of course, Japanese culture has a
                  Message 8 of 22 , May 20 5:25 AM
                    --- Ong Yong Peng <pali.smith@...> skrev:

                    > In a way, this attitude is built into many Asian
                    > cultures, and the
                    > samurai's culture is quite an extreme example of
                    > Buddhist influence.
                    > But, then, the samurai is a warrior, a person who
                    > should have been
                    > through the worst of life, even though his function
                    > to kill has
                    > deviated from the Buddhist value of compassion.
                    > Also, do not associate
                    > a samurai with a Jihadist or Crusadist suicide
                    > bomber. A samurai is
                    > just like an elite soldier you find in your
                    > country's military.

                    And perhaps somewhat similar to vikings - violent for
                    certain, but not in order to convert others to their
                    own religion.

                    Of course, Japanese culture has a special tradition of
                    "honorable" suicide - harakiri or seppuku; but I don't
                    know its historical origins. It certainly is not
                    recommended by Therarada Buddhism. Perhaps a Shinto
                    idea? (It may have some parallells in Pre-Christian
                    Nordic tradition as well.)

                    On the other hand, not recommending suicide does not
                    necessarily mean condemning those who practice it, as
                    was done for many centuries in the West, with the
                    "self murderers" entombed first in the forest, and
                    later at the north (and "evil") side of church. I
                    think the basic idea there was that only God can give
                    life, and only God may take it (that later part was
                    not always practiced by kings), so taking your own
                    life was doing something only permissible to God, and
                    therefore an "unforgivable" sin. Such a theory, of
                    course, could have no basis in Buddhism.

                    In Buddhism, there is a special case of Arahants
                    deciding not to go on living although they may be able
                    to do so. In the Mahaparinibbaanasutta, the Buddha
                    himself is told to have made such a renounciation some
                    months before his death, and it seems that he ate his
                    last meal knowing it to be poisonous. Whether this is
                    to be called "suicide" is peerhaps a matter of
                    definition, but Arahants don't make kamma anyway -
                    their personal problems are already permanently
                    solved.

                    Gunnar







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                  • Yojana Bhagat
                    there are said to be two types of marana, that is death in Buddhism- the kaala marana that is the timely death - the death which is by the exhaustion of
                    Message 9 of 22 , May 20 12:10 PM
                      there are said to be two types of marana, that is death in Buddhism- the kaala marana that is the timely death - the death which is by the exhaustion of particular kammas and in the old age.the other is the akaala marana, that is the untimely death. the vipaka of some kammas are so great that the rupa ceases to exist and the nama continues in the next form. such death is the one in young age in some kind of accident or so on.
                      suicide could be considered into the kind of untimely death where the kammas are not yet exhausted and you yourself is curtailing the rupa. it is believed that the balance life with the kammas and the kammavipaka of the act of commiting suicide combines and gives one the next birth where one has to live the balance life of the earlier one and also the current one.
                      that is the reason the suicide is not talked about or favoured by in buddhism. this is what i have read.
                      may be you can say something more on it.

                      in metta
                      Dr. Yojana Bhagat


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                    • Ong Yong Peng
                      Dear Gunnar, Piya and friends, I would like to express my personal views, in addition to what I have replied to Thomas Law earlier. I like to especially expand
                      Message 10 of 22 , May 24 4:11 AM
                        Dear Gunnar, Piya and friends,

                        I would like to express my personal views, in addition to what I have
                        replied to Thomas Law earlier.

                        I like to especially expand on the notion of subjectivism in Piya's
                        article. To me, being subjective is to consider an object or an issue
                        totally based on one's opinions and experience, without considering
                        external facts. It is unholistic, unwholesome and a very narrow-minded
                        way of looking at things.

                        Social issues like suicide, martyrdom, euthanasia (mercy killing),
                        cannibalism, murder, human sacrifice (the list can goes on), all
                        involve human lives, and one or more of these has been promoted or
                        tolerated by certain societies at certain times throughout history.

                        Discussing these issues from a Buddhist viewpoint means considering
                        them with compassion. Otherwise, the discussion can get personal and
                        subjective. On the topic of suicide, looking purely at the 'moral'
                        aspect of suicide will never help us understand suicidal tendencies.
                        At best, we are like Sariputta and Mahacunda in MN144 trying to talk
                        Channa out of it. At worst, we develop unwholesome mental attitudes
                        towards people and society.

                        metta,
                        Yong Peng.


                        --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Gunnar Gällmo wrote:

                        On the other hand, not recommending suicide does not necessarily mean
                        condemning those who practice it, as was done for many centuries in
                        the West, with the "self murderers" entombed first in the forest, and
                        later at the north (and "evil") side of church.
                      • Ong Yong Peng
                        Dear friends, the recent discussion on suicide provides us a very important lesson on what makes a good discussion and what does not. Before continuing, I have
                        Message 11 of 22 , May 25 10:57 PM
                          Dear friends,

                          the recent discussion on suicide provides us a very important lesson
                          on what makes a good discussion and what does not.

                          Before continuing, I have to clearly state that I am not directing
                          this against Piya or anyone in particular. Piya's efforts and
                          contributions to the group is worthy of compliments.

                          And I also like to say that I would rather spend my time on something
                          more productive or more enjoyable than typing this message. So, I will
                          keep it real short.

                          For a meaningful discussion to exist, there has to be a discussion. It
                          is fine to refer to articles/materials elsewhere, but repeatedly
                          referring to a single article without any other inputs is bad.

                          This mailing list is one of the few successful ones with a Buddhist
                          theme and active participation. Very often, we have seen people
                          stirring up either out of envy, jealousy, ignorance or arrogance. Its
                          future success to remain as a useful online resource for Pali study
                          will depend on your support for open and honest discussions. Thank you.

                          metta,
                          Yong Peng.


                          --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Ong Yong Peng wrote:

                          I would like to express my personal views, in addition to what I have
                          replied to Thomas Law earlier.
                        • Peter Tomlinson
                          Hello to all, With all due respect, I knew Nanasumana, one of the last people to see Nanavira alive, and I visited Bundala, the sire of Nanavira s life and
                          Message 12 of 22 , May 26 9:46 PM
                            Hello to all,
                            With all due respect, I knew Nanasumana, one of the last people to see Nanavira alive, and I visited Bundala, the sire of Nanavira's life and death. I have read "Notes on Dhamma" often and respect Nanavira's claim of Sotapanna. His sexual troubles notwithstanding, his Amoebiosis was what he claimed was killing him.

                            I do not deny the Satyriosis that he admitted to. It is a psychological problem I am told, yet does this mean he was deluded about his attainment? does this cast doubt on "Notes on Dhamma"?

                            His suicide was tragic, but he claimed he believed that he would be reborn in a state where he could practice Dhamma as he would have done had it not been for his disease. I read all of his letters and helped compile his writings with Sumana and Nanasuci and others.

                            I feel often that many did not understand what Nanavira tried to do by sending out "Notes on Dhamma" and that this has caused criticism.
                            Please forgive me if I have offended, that is not my intention.

                            Peter Tomlinson

                            Piya Tan <dharmafarer@...> wrote: On 5/26/07, Piya Tan <dharmafarer@...> wrote:

                            Lest Yong Peng be misunderstood, please note that he is not criticizing me,
                            > but
                            > referring to section of "The danger of subjectivism" (Intro 2) in my
                            > essay. I need to
                            > clarify this.
                            >
                            > Looking back (I worked on the essay in 2005), other than the Sutta
                            > translation, I enjoyed researching section 5 of the Introduction, about why
                            > and how the Italian wealthy eccentric Baron Evola tried to force his
                            > romanticized idea of suicide into Buddhism, and how the tragic western monk
                            > Nanavira, troubled with his sexuality, in the end committed suicide. These
                            > are painful truths many monks even today face.
                            >
                            > For them, let me say it is vital to find good spiritual friends in
                            > teachers with still minds. There is often the danger when they don the robe
                            > they think they should not listen to
                            > other teachers, esp teachers from other Buddhist ordinations. As they
                            > reach seniority,
                            > it becomes harder for them to learn, esp thinking more devotees respect
                            > them. So they
                            > live a Jekyll and Hyde life.
                            >
                            > Buddhism is about liberating yourself, not about self-pride or which
                            > school one belongs to.
                            >
                            > Piya Tan
                          • Piya Tan
                            Peter, It is to one s advantage to be able to see good even in the evil, although this may be difficult in some cases who have done great evil (such as
                            Message 13 of 22 , May 27 6:02 PM
                              Peter,

                              It is to one's advantage to be able to see good even in the evil, although
                              this may be
                              difficult in some cases who have done great evil (such as Hitler).
                              Nevertheless, with
                              some understanding we will see that people are mostly products of their past
                              karma
                              and present circumstances.

                              Anyone who seeks inner peace (as Nanavira and others like him) surely have
                              great
                              potential goodness within. Whether or not one is a saint is only another's
                              guess. (I
                              have written a whole article on this elsewhere based on the Suttas.)

                              As I said earlier, one great way to deeper wisdom (not that I claim it) is
                              to constantly
                              sk "why do I think this way" (I try to do that). In understand this as a
                              form of wise
                              attention (yoniso manasikaara) taught as vitakka,sankhaara,santhaana in the
                              Vitakka
                              Santhana Sutta (M 20).

                              I think the Buddha has made the rule about monastics' not claiming spiritual
                              states (esp
                              those who have not truly attained) is not only to prevent flies from coming
                              to the sugar
                              (and so drown in it), but to encourage each of us to work towards inner
                              stillness so
                              that we can ourselves attain stream-winning in this life itself.

                              Thank you Peter for reminding me of Nanavira's good side, which I fail to
                              mention. And also
                              for thoughtfully sharing your insights.

                              If we are respectfully open and curious about one another ,even facelessly
                              on the net, we
                              can still bring out one another's goodness. I always try to remember what,
                              after all, learning
                              Pali is about, it is about the grammar of word, but more so about the
                              grammar of sprituality
                              of the Buddha Dhamma.

                              Every day is Vesak for those who seek within.

                              Piya Tan

                              On 5/27/07, Peter Tomlinson <gnanayasa@...> wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              > Hello to all,
                              > With all due respect, I knew Nanasumana, one of the last people to see
                              > Nanavira alive, and I visited Bundala, the sire of Nanavira's life and
                              > death. I have read "Notes on Dhamma" often and respect Nanavira's claim of
                              > Sotapanna. His sexual troubles notwithstanding, his Amoebiosis was what he
                              > claimed was killing him.
                              >
                              > I do not deny the Satyriosis that he admitted to. It is a psychological
                              > problem I am told, yet does this mean he was deluded about his attainment?
                              > does this cast doubt on "Notes on Dhamma"?
                              >
                              > His suicide was tragic, but he claimed he believed that he would be reborn
                              > in a state where he could practice Dhamma as he would have done had it not
                              > been for his disease. I read all of his letters and helped compile his
                              > writings with Sumana and Nanasuci and others.
                              >
                              > I feel often that many did not understand what Nanavira tried to do by
                              > sending out "Notes on Dhamma" and that this has caused criticism.
                              > Please forgive me if I have offended, that is not my intention.
                              >
                              > Peter Tomlinson
                              >
                              > Piya Tan <dharmafarer@... <dharmafarer%40gmail.com>> wrote: On
                              > 5/26/07, Piya Tan <dharmafarer@... <dharmafarer%40gmail.com>> wrote:
                              >
                              > Lest Yong Peng be misunderstood, please note that he is not criticizing
                              > me,
                              > > but
                              > > referring to section of "The danger of subjectivism" (Intro 2) in my
                              > > essay. I need to
                              > > clarify this.
                              > >
                              > > Looking back (I worked on the essay in 2005), other than the Sutta
                              > > translation, I enjoyed researching section 5 of the Introduction, about
                              > why
                              > > and how the Italian wealthy eccentric Baron Evola tried to force his
                              > > romanticized idea of suicide into Buddhism, and how the tragic western
                              > monk
                              > > Nanavira, troubled with his sexuality, in the end committed suicide.
                              > These
                              > > are painful truths many monks even today face.
                              > >
                              > > For them, let me say it is vital to find good spiritual friends in
                              > > teachers with still minds. There is often the danger when they don the
                              > robe
                              > > they think they should not listen to
                              > > other teachers, esp teachers from other Buddhist ordinations. As they
                              > > reach seniority,
                              > > it becomes harder for them to learn, esp thinking more devotees respect
                              > > them. So they
                              > > live a Jekyll and Hyde life.
                              > >
                              > > Buddhism is about liberating yourself, not about self-pride or which
                              > > school one belongs to.
                              > >
                              > > Piya Tan
                              >
                              >



                              --
                              The Minding Centre
                              Blk 644 Bukit Batok Central #01-68 (2nd flr)
                              Singapore 650644
                              Website: dharmafarer.googlepages.com


                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • Ong Yong Peng
                              Dear Piya and Peter, someone used to say, Without religion, it takes good men to do good and evil men to do evil. With religion, it takes good men to do
                              Message 14 of 22 , May 28 7:06 AM
                                Dear Piya and Peter,

                                someone used to say, "Without religion, it takes good men to do good
                                and evil men to do evil. With religion, it takes good men to do evil."
                                If we look at the history of religion, we can clearly see the validity
                                of this statement. Even in the present day, there are plenty of
                                examples. James Kopp is a good one.

                                Piya: I have not heard about Nanavira previously, but reading your
                                article (I have not read your article until last week) leaves behind a
                                lot of questions about him. While you must have achieved your
                                objectives for your article, your brief account of Nanavira does not
                                necessarily do him right. Alas. A dead man cannot speak for himself.

                                I can understand that your writings are always evangelical in flavor,
                                from when you were a monk up till now. However, I believe there is a
                                limit as to how far evangelism should go before it starts getting onto
                                people's nerves. Most people just want to be good, and live a life of
                                their choice. You chose to become a monk, and later you chose to have
                                a family. Those were your choices. Similarly, everyone should have be
                                able to make choices for him/herself.

                                Peter: Buddhism is a religion about respect. Out of respect for life,
                                we abstain from killing, neither do we encourage suicide. Nanavira's
                                story is no doubt a tragic one, it reminds us of the constant
                                challenges we have to face in life, and the compassion and wisdom we
                                need to develop to help ourselves and others through times of difficulty.

                                To all: Let's take a break from this topic. If there is any questions
                                on Piya's article, please write to him in private.

                                metta,
                                Yong Peng.


                                --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, "Piya Tan" <dharmafarer@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > Peter,
                                >
                                > It is to one's advantage to be able to see good even in the evil,
                                although
                                > this may be
                                > difficult in some cases who have done great evil (such as Hitler).
                                > Nevertheless, with
                                > some understanding we will see that people are mostly products of
                                their past
                                > karma
                                > and present circumstances.
                                >
                                > Anyone who seeks inner peace (as Nanavira and others like him)
                                surely have
                                > great
                                > potential goodness within. Whether or not one is a saint is only
                                another's
                                > guess. (I
                                > have written a whole article on this elsewhere based on the Suttas.)
                                >
                                > As I said earlier, one great way to deeper wisdom (not that I claim
                                it) is
                                > to constantly
                                > sk "why do I think this way" (I try to do that). In understand this as a
                                > form of wise
                                > attention (yoniso manasikaara) taught as vitakka,sankhaara,santhaana
                                in the
                                > Vitakka
                                > Santhana Sutta (M 20).
                                >
                                > I think the Buddha has made the rule about monastics' not claiming
                                spiritual
                                > states (esp
                                > those who have not truly attained) is not only to prevent flies from
                                coming
                                > to the sugar
                                > (and so drown in it), but to encourage each of us to work towards inner
                                > stillness so
                                > that we can ourselves attain stream-winning in this life itself.
                                >
                                > Thank you Peter for reminding me of Nanavira's good side, which I
                                fail to
                                > mention. And also
                                > for thoughtfully sharing your insights.
                                >
                                > If we are respectfully open and curious about one another ,even
                                facelessly
                                > on the net, we
                                > can still bring out one another's goodness. I always try to remember
                                what,
                                > after all, learning
                                > Pali is about, it is about the grammar of word, but more so about the
                                > grammar of sprituality
                                > of the Buddha Dhamma.
                                >
                                > Every day is Vesak for those who seek within.
                                >
                                > Piya Tan
                                >
                                > On 5/27/07, Peter Tomlinson <gnanayasa@...> wrote:
                                > >
                                > >
                                > > Hello to all,
                                > > With all due respect, I knew Nanasumana, one of the last people to see
                                > > Nanavira alive, and I visited Bundala, the sire of Nanavira's life and
                                > > death. I have read "Notes on Dhamma" often and respect Nanavira's
                                claim of
                                > > Sotapanna. His sexual troubles notwithstanding, his Amoebiosis was
                                what he
                                > > claimed was killing him.
                                > >
                                > > I do not deny the Satyriosis that he admitted to. It is a
                                psychological
                                > > problem I am told, yet does this mean he was deluded about his
                                attainment?
                                > > does this cast doubt on "Notes on Dhamma"?
                                > >
                                > > His suicide was tragic, but he claimed he believed that he would
                                be reborn
                                > > in a state where he could practice Dhamma as he would have done
                                had it not
                                > > been for his disease. I read all of his letters and helped compile his
                                > > writings with Sumana and Nanasuci and others.
                                > >
                                > > I feel often that many did not understand what Nanavira tried to do by
                                > > sending out "Notes on Dhamma" and that this has caused criticism.
                                > > Please forgive me if I have offended, that is not my intention.
                                > >
                                > > Peter Tomlinson
                                > >
                                > > Piya Tan <dharmafarer@... <dharmafarer%40gmail.com>> wrote: On
                                > > 5/26/07, Piya Tan <dharmafarer@... <dharmafarer%40gmail.com>> wrote:
                                > >
                                > > Lest Yong Peng be misunderstood, please note that he is not
                                criticizing
                                > > me,
                                > > > but
                                > > > referring to section of "The danger of subjectivism" (Intro 2) in my
                                > > > essay. I need to
                                > > > clarify this.
                                > > >
                                > > > Looking back (I worked on the essay in 2005), other than the Sutta
                                > > > translation, I enjoyed researching section 5 of the
                                Introduction, about
                                > > why
                                > > > and how the Italian wealthy eccentric Baron Evola tried to force his
                                > > > romanticized idea of suicide into Buddhism, and how the tragic
                                western
                                > > monk
                                > > > Nanavira, troubled with his sexuality, in the end committed suicide.
                                > > These
                                > > > are painful truths many monks even today face.
                                > > >
                                > > > For them, let me say it is vital to find good spiritual friends in
                                > > > teachers with still minds. There is often the danger when they
                                don the
                                > > robe
                                > > > they think they should not listen to
                                > > > other teachers, esp teachers from other Buddhist ordinations. As
                                they
                                > > > reach seniority,
                                > > > it becomes harder for them to learn, esp thinking more devotees
                                respect
                                > > > them. So they
                                > > > live a Jekyll and Hyde life.
                                > > >
                                > > > Buddhism is about liberating yourself, not about self-pride or which
                                > > > school one belongs to.
                                > > >
                                > > > Piya Tan
                                > >
                                > >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > --
                                > The Minding Centre
                                > Blk 644 Bukit Batok Central #01-68 (2nd flr)
                                > Singapore 650644
                                > Website: dharmafarer.googlepages.com
                                >
                                >
                                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                >
                              • Gunnar Gällmo
                                Dear Piya Tan and Peter, With all respect, I think discussing the psychological problems of individual persons in this list is not proper, especially if the
                                Message 15 of 22 , May 28 7:20 AM
                                  Dear Piya Tan and Peter,

                                  With all respect, I think discussing the psychological
                                  problems of individual persons in this list is not
                                  proper, especially if the person discussed has passed
                                  away and can't defend himself.

                                  Please let us keep to the problems discussed at a
                                  general level.

                                  Gunnar




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                                • Peter Tomlinson
                                  Thanks to everyone for being such good Dhamma teachers. Yes, I need reminders, pointers, and encouragement to sustain Dhamma practice in this samsara realm.
                                  Message 16 of 22 , May 28 7:30 AM
                                    Thanks to everyone for being such good Dhamma teachers. Yes, I need reminders, pointers, and encouragement to sustain Dhamma practice in this samsara realm. Much of this world seems quite disturbed, even mad. I concur that metta, and sutta study and meditation and sila practice are important. I am very glad to know you, Piya Tan, and Ong Yong Peng even through e mail.

                                    Thanks again for your compassionate attention to the essentials of what the Buddha taught, wasn't it "only this do I teach, suffering and its end to reach"? Because of people like you I return daily to the practice, however imperfectly to keep sila and at least do a little study and meditation, (too little, I am afraid).

                                    I have few wishes to promulgate controversy any longer, and I cannot compare to the dedication or scholarship of any of you, still you keep me going through this difficult life.

                                    With metta,
                                    Pete Tomlinson

                                    Ong Yong Peng <pali.smith@...> wrote: Dear Piya and Peter,

                                    someone used to say, "Without religion, it takes good men to do good
                                    and evil men to do evil. With religion, it takes good men to do evil."
                                    If we look at the history of religion, we can clearly see the validity
                                    of this statement. Even in the present day, there are plenty of
                                    examples. James Kopp is a good one.

                                    Piya: I have not heard about Nanavira previously, but reading your
                                    article (I have not read your article until last week) leaves behind a
                                    lot of questions about him. While you must have achieved your
                                    objectives for your article, your brief account of Nanavira does not
                                    necessarily do him right. Alas. A dead man cannot speak for himself.

                                    I can understand that your writings are always evangelical in flavor,
                                    from when you were a monk up till now. However, I believe there is a
                                    limit as to how far evangelism should go before it starts getting onto
                                    people's nerves. Most people just want to be good, and live a life of
                                    their choice. You chose to become a monk, and later you chose to have
                                    a family. Those were your choices. Similarly, everyone should have be
                                    able to make choices for him/herself.

                                    Peter: Buddhism is a religion about respect. Out of respect for life,
                                    we abstain from killing, neither do we encourage suicide. Nanavira's
                                    story is no doubt a tragic one, it reminds us of the constant
                                    challenges we have to face in life, and the compassion and wisdom we
                                    need to develop to help ourselves and others through times of difficulty.

                                    To all: Let's take a break from this topic. If there is any questions
                                    on Piya's article, please write to him in private.

                                    metta,
                                    Yong Peng.

                                    --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, "Piya Tan" <dharmafarer@...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    > Peter,
                                    >
                                    > It is to one's advantage to be able to see good even in the evil,
                                    although
                                    > this may be
                                    > difficult in some cases who have done great evil (such as Hitler).
                                    > Nevertheless, with
                                    > some understanding we will see that people are mostly products of
                                    their past
                                    > karma
                                    > and present circumstances.
                                    >
                                    > Anyone who seeks inner peace (as Nanavira and others like him)
                                    surely have
                                    > great
                                    > potential goodness within. Whether or not one is a saint is only
                                    another's
                                    > guess. (I
                                    > have written a whole article on this elsewhere based on the Suttas.)
                                    >
                                    > As I said earlier, one great way to deeper wisdom (not that I claim
                                    it) is
                                    > to constantly
                                    > sk "why do I think this way" (I try to do that). In understand this as a
                                    > form of wise
                                    > attention (yoniso manasikaara) taught as vitakka,sankhaara,santhaana
                                    in the
                                    > Vitakka
                                    > Santhana Sutta (M 20).
                                    >
                                    > I think the Buddha has made the rule about monastics' not claiming
                                    spiritual
                                    > states (esp
                                    > those who have not truly attained) is not only to prevent flies from
                                    coming
                                    > to the sugar
                                    > (and so drown in it), but to encourage each of us to work towards inner
                                    > stillness so
                                    > that we can ourselves attain stream-winning in this life itself.
                                    >
                                    > Thank you Peter for reminding me of Nanavira's good side, which I
                                    fail to
                                    > mention. And also
                                    > for thoughtfully sharing your insights.
                                    >
                                    > If we are respectfully open and curious about one another ,even
                                    facelessly
                                    > on the net, we
                                    > can still bring out one another's goodness. I always try to remember
                                    what,
                                    > after all, learning
                                    > Pali is about, it is about the grammar of word, but more so about the
                                    > grammar of sprituality
                                    > of the Buddha Dhamma.
                                    >
                                    > Every day is Vesak for those who seek within.
                                    >
                                    > Piya Tan
                                    >
                                    > On 5/27/07, Peter Tomlinson <gnanayasa@...> wrote:
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > > Hello to all,
                                    > > With all due respect, I knew Nanasumana, one of the last people to see
                                    > > Nanavira alive, and I visited Bundala, the sire of Nanavira's life and
                                    > > death. I have read "Notes on Dhamma" often and respect Nanavira's
                                    claim of
                                    > > Sotapanna. His sexual troubles notwithstanding, his Amoebiosis was
                                    what he
                                    > > claimed was killing him.
                                    > >
                                    > > I do not deny the Satyriosis that he admitted to. It is a
                                    psychological
                                    > > problem I am told, yet does this mean he was deluded about his
                                    attainment?
                                    > > does this cast doubt on "Notes on Dhamma"?
                                    > >
                                    > > His suicide was tragic, but he claimed he believed that he would
                                    be reborn
                                    > > in a state where he could practice Dhamma as he would have done
                                    had it not
                                    > > been for his disease. I read all of his letters and helped compile his
                                    > > writings with Sumana and Nanasuci and others.
                                    > >
                                    > > I feel often that many did not understand what Nanavira tried to do by
                                    > > sending out "Notes on Dhamma" and that this has caused criticism.
                                    > > Please forgive me if I have offended, that is not my intention.
                                    > >
                                    > > Peter Tomlinson
                                    > >
                                    > > Piya Tan <dharmafarer@... <dharmafarer%40gmail.com>> wrote: On
                                    > > 5/26/07, Piya Tan <dharmafarer@... <dharmafarer%40gmail.com>> wrote:
                                    > >
                                    > > Lest Yong Peng be misunderstood, please note that he is not
                                    criticizing
                                    > > me,
                                    > > > but
                                    > > > referring to section of "The danger of subjectivism" (Intro 2) in my
                                    > > > essay. I need to
                                    > > > clarify this.
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Looking back (I worked on the essay in 2005), other than the Sutta
                                    > > > translation, I enjoyed researching section 5 of the
                                    Introduction, about
                                    > > why
                                    > > > and how the Italian wealthy eccentric Baron Evola tried to force his
                                    > > > romanticized idea of suicide into Buddhism, and how the tragic
                                    western
                                    > > monk
                                    > > > Nanavira, troubled with his sexuality, in the end committed suicide.
                                    > > These
                                    > > > are painful truths many monks even today face.
                                    > > >
                                    > > > For them, let me say it is vital to find good spiritual friends in
                                    > > > teachers with still minds. There is often the danger when they
                                    don the
                                    > > robe
                                    > > > they think they should not listen to
                                    > > > other teachers, esp teachers from other Buddhist ordinations. As
                                    they
                                    > > > reach seniority,
                                    > > > it becomes harder for them to learn, esp thinking more devotees
                                    respect
                                    > > > them. So they
                                    > > > live a Jekyll and Hyde life.
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Buddhism is about liberating yourself, not about self-pride or which
                                    > > > school one belongs to.
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Piya Tan
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > --
                                    > The Minding Centre
                                    > Blk 644 Bukit Batok Central #01-68 (2nd flr)
                                    > Singapore 650644
                                    > Website: dharmafarer.googlepages.com
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    >






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