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Re: Buddhist economics

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  • Ong Yong Peng
    Dear Kare, Nina, Mike and friends, Mike: I can understanding your style of writing emails. I think it is totally a matter of personal taste the way an
    Message 1 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
      Dear Kare, Nina, Mike and friends,

      Mike: I can understanding your style of writing emails. I think it is
      totally a matter of personal taste the way an individual compose his
      messages. However, I do sometimes find them too blunt. It is still ok
      to talk rough between guys, provided no one gets personal. However,
      please be mindful that there are ladies on the list too. Therefore, I
      would suggest that we go a bit light-hearted in our exchanges.

      Otherwise, I think you have raised a valid point. But, then, Nina may
      have other opinions.

      metta,
      Yong Peng.


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

      > "There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them"

      What is your understanding of the goal of what the Buddha taught is
      if it isn't to escape nama and rupa?
    • Gunnar Gällmo
      ... For one thing, he must have been quite aware that not everyone is able to live on only 25% of his or her gross income. I never could, and I don t feel too
      Message 2 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
        --- Ong Yong Peng <yongpeng.ong@...> wrote:
        > I would like to say that where personal wealth
        > management is concerned,
        > anything along this line is fine. However, I believe
        > the Buddha didn't
        > intend it to be dogmatic

        For one thing, he must have been quite aware that not
        everyone is able to live on only 25% of his or her
        gross income. I never could, and I don't feel too
        sorry for being unable to follow the letter of his
        advice.

        Gunnar


        gunnargallmo@...
      • olbeggaols
        Yong Peng, I understand your concern here is to keep the discussion polite. Reviewing the post, I imagine you would have preferred I had left out the: With
        Message 3 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
          Yong Peng,

          I understand your concern here is to keep the discussion polite.

          Reviewing the post, I imagine you would have preferred I had left out
          the:

          "With all the best wishes for you personally, this has got to be
          either a thoughtless statement on your part or an outright pernicious
          belief that you should let go of, that is, your statement that:

          "There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them"

          and the closing:

          "It just comes down to what I would call a discouraging word."

          That would have left:

          "What is your understanding of the goal of what the Buddha taught is
          if it isn't to escape nama and rupa?"

          And that would most likely have been a better way to go, all things
          considered, so if Nina will accept a retraction I would re-state the
          post:

          Nina:

          You say: "There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them"

          In reference to that I ask: "What is your understanding of the goal
          of what the Buddha taught is if it isn't to escape nama and rupa?"

          Now if I am not mistaken, Nina is no idiot, and she sees exactly that
          my intent is in this attempt to enter into debate with her:

          1. It is for the sake of pointing out by way of analysis of the
          response how it was a statement made without thought or was a
          pernicious belief held onto by her.

          2. It is for the sake of pointing out to those who are just learning
          how such a view is not Dhamma, (it's not even realistic in ordinary
          terms) and that it is one of our duties in our concern for the
          preservation of Dhamma to point out what is and what is not Dhamma.

          It is a matter of judgment, in my judgment, as to whether it is less
          blunt to be blunt and get the cards out on the table and by that
          point out the purposes of raising the issue or to be what appears to
          me to be excessively circumspect and risk loss of the point
          altogether while having gained nothing in terms of what Nina (and
          anyone else thinking about the matter) understands to be the intent.

          I actually fall on the side of being more circumspect and have been
          working on that issue in my posts; it goes against my upbringing and
          perception of what does and what does not constitute the best way for
          an individual to hear that he is dead wrong about something, but it
          is definately a better way when considering my own peace of mind and
          the hassles of dealing with misunderstanding my intentions.

          The other issue here is: since such statements as the one made by
          Nina here constitute a 'blunt' attack on many people's belief systems
          (within the Dhamma) (sort of my parallel to 'there are women
          present') shouldn't policy be just as thorough in coming down on such
          as on coming down on poorly constructed reaction to such? Equal
          treatment to all according to the same standard is one of the four
          basics for developing friendships.
        • Nina van Gorkom
          Hi Mike Olds, Sorry to cause misunderstandings. I meant something different from what you read. Nama and rupa are everywhere and they can be objects of
          Message 4 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
            Hi Mike Olds,
            Sorry to cause misunderstandings. I meant something different from what you
            read.
            Nama and rupa are everywhere and they can be objects of understanding. We
            cannot avoid them, because they are right here. But, the development of
            right understanding of them will eventually lead to the end of samsara, and
            then there will not be the arising of nama and rupa anymore.
            I just saw your other post, but no need to worry. We are just studying
            Dhamma.
            Nina.
            op 03-04-2005 13:05 schreef olbeggaols op MikeOlds@...:

            > With all the best wishes for you personally, this has got to be
            > either a thoughtless statement on your part or an outright pernicious
            > belief that you should let go of, that is, your statement that:
            >
            > "There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them"
            >
            > What is your understanding of the goal of what the Buddha taught is
            > if it isn't to escape nama and rupa?
            >
            > It just comes down to what I would call a discouraging word.
          • Stephen Hodge
            ... I think this is all rather over the top and still not a little offensive or hurtful. To me, it is quite clear from the context that Nina was not saying
            Message 5 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
              Mike wrote:

              >> "There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them"
              > 1. It is for the sake of pointing out by way of analysis of the
              > response how it was a statement made without thought or was a
              > pernicious belief held onto by her.

              I think this is all rather over the top and still not a little offensive or
              hurtful. To me, it is quite clear from the context that Nina was not saying
              that one cannot escape from nama-rupa in the Buddhist sense, but they are an
              ever-present problem that we are burdened with, so as far as I can see she
              was merely saying that the demands of life are sometimes rather presssing.

              You should always remember that not everybody on this list is a native
              speaker of English -- though she has an excellent command of the language,
              English is not Nina's mother tongue. Allowances should be made for the
              occasional linguistic infelicity which would not have been written by
              masters of our language such as yourself.

              > what does and what does not constitute the best way for
              > an individual to hear that he is dead wrong about something
              You, of course, are impeccably qualified to judge such things ?

              Best wishes,
              Stephen Hodge
            • "Kåre A. Lie"
              ... I agree. The reason why I am interested in these matters, is that I am writing a book (in Norwegian) on Buddhism from a humanist perspective, and I find it
              Message 6 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
                At 14:23 03.04.2005 +0200, you wrote:

                >--- Ong Yong Peng <yongpeng.ong@...> wrote:
                > > I would like to say that where personal wealth
                > > management is concerned,
                > > anything along this line is fine. However, I believe
                > > the Buddha didn't
                > > intend it to be dogmatic
                >
                >For one thing, he must have been quite aware that not
                >everyone is able to live on only 25% of his or her
                >gross income. I never could, and I don't feel too
                >sorry for being unable to follow the letter of his
                >advice.

                I agree.

                The reason why I am interested in these matters, is that I am writing a
                book (in Norwegian) on Buddhism from a humanist perspective, and I find it
                useful to have some stories to illustrate that the Buddha also showed a
                concern for the daily life and economics of ordinary lay people.

                I do not recommend that anyone should take these stories dogmatically. What
                they show, however, is that from a Buddhist point of view lay persons can
                pursue their carreers and earn money with a good conscience, provided they
                earn their money in a rightful way, spend their earnings wisely and also
                use them to help others.

                I found that there are several small dialogues in the AN that illustrate
                this, and I think I'll use the one in DN 69 (IV, VII, 62). But I am
                thankful for the suggestions I got. They pointed me in the right direction.

                Yours,

                Kåre A. Lie
                http://www.lienet.no/

                THESAURUS (n.): An ancient reptile with
                an excellent vocabulary.
              • "Kåre A. Lie"
                ... Thank you. I ve got the PTS books in English and the CSCD with the Pali texts, so that is no problem at all. Best regards, Kåre A. Lie
                Message 7 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
                  At 11:05 03.04.2005 +0000, you wrote:


                  >Kåre,
                  >
                  >ATI is down at the moment, but if you get to the 8s there are two
                  >translations of the Longknee sutta there:
                  >
                  >http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/anguttara/an08-054a.html

                  Thank you. I've got the PTS books in English and the CSCD with the Pali
                  texts, so that is no problem at all.

                  Best regards,

                  Kåre A. Lie
                  http://www.lienet.no/

                  THESAURUS (n.): An ancient reptile with
                  an excellent vocabulary.
                • "Kåre A. Lie"
                  ... Thank you, Nina. This is also a very interesting dialogue. It is a bit long for my purpose, but I think I will find use for parts of it. Best regards,
                  Message 8 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
                    At 11:35 03.04.2005 +0200, you wrote:

                    >Hi Kåre,
                    >op 02-04-2005 14:19 schreef Kåre A. Lie op alberlie@...:
                    >
                    > > If someone have
                    > > some other suggestions about this or other sayings about the same theme -
                    > > householders and economics - I'd be most thankful.
                    >N: Ang. Book of Eights, Ch 5, Gotamid, § 4, Longknee or Diighajaanu. Also
                    >edited in Wheel no 14. I cannot quote much now: conditions of worldly
                    >progress, accomplishment of watchfulness, good friendship, etc.
                    >What I like in all these suttas; the advice is very practical for laymen and
                    >at the end there are spiritual counsels. The accomplishment of wisdom:
                    >insight that realizes impermanence. Satipatthana is implied, and to be
                    >developed in daily life. Also when earning one's living, playing music in
                    >our case! There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them.
                    >Nina.

                    Thank you, Nina. This is also a very interesting dialogue. It is a bit long
                    for my purpose, but I think I will find use for parts of it.

                    Best regards,

                    Kåre A. Lie
                    http://www.lienet.no/

                    THESAURUS (n.): An ancient reptile with
                    an excellent vocabulary.
                  • Ven. Yuttadhammo
                    ... Dear Friends, I think another thing to take into consideration here is our extravagent lifestyles in the West that drive up prices of housing, food, etc.
                    Message 9 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
                      >--- Ong Yong Peng <yongpeng.ong@...> wrote:
                      > > I would like to say that where personal wealth
                      > > management is concerned,
                      > > anything along this line is fine. However, I believe
                      > > the Buddha didn't
                      > > intend it to be dogmatic
                      >
                      >For one thing, he must have been quite aware that not
                      >everyone is able to live on only 25% of his or her
                      >gross income. I never could, and I don't feel too
                      >sorry for being unable to follow the letter of his
                      >advice.

                      Dear Friends,

                      I think another thing to take into consideration here is our
                      extravagent lifestyles in the West that drive up prices of housing,
                      food, etc. If someone really wanted to keep to the Buddha's words
                      here, they might have to move to a poor country, live in a hut, and
                      be quite clever, like the mouse merchant (Jat 4).

                      I think it must have been a gutsy thing to say even in the time of the
                      Buddha, especially given the commentary's explaination implying that
                      we are not actually meant to live on 25% of our income, we are meant
                      to live on whatever is left of that 25% after giving alms! (cp
                      Vighaasa Jat. 393) It might of course be wise to suggest that the two
                      parts to be used for business include income taxes and other taxes,
                      which are quite high in developed countries...

                      Not to outright suggest that one try to follow this to the letter, but
                      to suggest that sometimes we are quick to think the Buddha's teaching
                      outdated and impractical when it might in fact just be out of our
                      reach at the moment... the story goes that Vessantara was born with
                      his hand outstretched, and the first words he uttered were "mother, I
                      wish to make some gift, is there anything?" (Jat 547) :) Visayha (Jat
                      340) mowed grass to make money when Sakka caused his treasure to
                      disappear, and he gave both halves of the money got to beggars when
                      asked, six days in a row, before fainting on the seventh day.

                      maa bhikkhave pu~n~naana.m bhaayittha. sukhasseta.m, bhikkhave,
                      adhivacana.m - yadida.m pu~n~naani. (Iti 1.3.2 Mettasutta)

                      amhaaka.m kusalaa kammaa nibbaanapaccayaa hontu,

                      Yuttadhammo
                    • Ven. Yuttadhammo
                      ... From: Stephen Hodge To: Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 1:10 AM Subject: [Pali] Buddhist
                      Message 10 of 27 , Apr 3, 2005
                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: "Stephen Hodge" <s.hodge@...>
                        To: <Pali@yahoogroups.com>
                        Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 1:10 AM
                        Subject: [Pali] Buddhist economics


                        >
                        > Mike wrote:
                        >
                        >>> "There are nama and rupa and we cannot escape them"
                        >> 1. It is for the sake of pointing out by way of analysis of the
                        >> response how it was a statement made without thought or was a
                        >> pernicious belief held onto by her.
                        >
                        > I think this is all rather over the top and still not a little
                        > offensive or
                        > hurtful. To me, it is quite clear from the context that Nina was
                        > not saying
                        > that one cannot escape from nama-rupa in the Buddhist sense, but
                        > they are an
                        > ever-present problem that we are burdened with, so as far as I can
                        > see she
                        > was merely saying that the demands of life are sometimes rather
                        > presssing.

                        If I may respectfully interject... I would like to affirm Ms. Van
                        Gorkom's statement... we cannot escape rupa and nama, as the
                        components of "we" are that very rupa and nama. This is why the Lord
                        Buddha taught "sabbe dhammaa anattaa". If nibbaana were self, then
                        surely we could escape rupa and nama. But since nibbaana is not self,
                        there is therefore no escape for "we". "We" has to run around chasing
                        after "we" like a dog its tail, and no escape is possible for a dog
                        from its tail...

                        Through letting go of "we", along with "they", "us", "them", "ours",
                        "theirs" (aha.m kara, mama.m kara) there is no more arising of rupa
                        and nama, and so there is nothing more to escape from and nothing that
                        should escape! But this requires freedom from both ditthi and manas,
                        and is not something achieved without striving...

                        ime me dve maasakaa honti (these are my two cents).

                        Shalom,

                        Yuttadhammo

                        > You should always remember that not everybody on this list is a
                        > native
                        > speaker of English -- though she has an excellent command of the
                        > language,
                        > English is not Nina's mother tongue. Allowances should be made for
                        > the
                        > occasional linguistic infelicity which would not have been written
                        > by
                        > masters of our language such as yourself.
                        >
                        >> what does and what does not constitute the best way for
                        >> an individual to hear that he is dead wrong about something
                        > You, of course, are impeccably qualified to judge such things ?
                        >
                        > Best wishes,
                        > Stephen Hodge
                      • Nina van Gorkom
                        Dear Kåre, ... N: That is interesting. I find that the Brahmaviharas help much for our social life. Police officers in Thailand were so interested in this
                        Message 11 of 27 , Apr 4, 2005
                          Dear Kåre,
                          op 03-04-2005 22:19 schreef Kåre A. Lie op alberlie@...:
                          >
                          > The reason why I am interested in these matters, is that I am writing a
                          > book (in Norwegian) on Buddhism from a humanist perspective, and I find it
                          > useful to have some stories to illustrate that the Buddha also showed a
                          > concern for the daily life and economics of ordinary lay people.
                          N: That is interesting. I find that the Brahmaviharas help much for our
                          social life. Police officers in Thailand were so interested in this subject,
                          and Acharn Sujin gave them a talk about it. This inspired me to write some
                          dialogues on the Brahma Viharas I had with my husband. This may be too much
                          for the scope of your book. In case you want to see it, it is on:
                          http://www.zolag.co.uk/
                          Nina.
                        • Ong Yong Peng
                          Dear Ven. Yuttadhammo, Kare, Nina, Mike, Rahula, Gunnar, Stephen and friends, Mike: In the Sangaha Sutta, the Buddha gives generosity, kinds words, beneficial
                          Message 12 of 27 , Apr 4, 2005
                            Dear Ven. Yuttadhammo, Kare, Nina, Mike, Rahula, Gunnar, Stephen and
                            friends,

                            Mike: In the Sangaha Sutta, the Buddha gives generosity, kinds words,
                            beneficial help and consistency as the four grounds for the bonds of
                            fellowship. I understand that you have no ill intentions, but I find
                            that there is no need to "corner" Nina for a statement she did not
                            make clear.

                            Otherwise, I do respect what you have done, for pointing the
                            incompleteness of Nina's statement, which may result in some having
                            an incorrect understanding of the Dhamma.

                            As the size of a discussion group grows and the discussion topics get
                            more involved, there is a tendency people shun from pointing out
                            others' mistakes, or correcting their own mistakes. So, I like to
                            take this opportunity to invite members who have never voiced out to
                            come forward, raise questions, and give your opinions, but please do
                            so wisely. This is important, otherwise it defeats the purpose of a
                            discussion group. It even defeats the good name of the Dhamma!

                            Svakkhato Bhagavata Dhammo
                            Sanditthiko Akaliko
                            Ehi-passiko Opanayiko
                            Paccattam veditabbo viññuhi ti.


                            metta,
                            Yong Peng.

                            Sangaha Sutta:
                            http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/anguttara/an04-032.html


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

                            I understand your concern here is to keep the discussion polite.
                          • Ong Yong Peng
                            Dear Ven. Yuttadhammo, Nina, Kare, Mike, Stephen, Gunnar, Rahula and friends, as I browsed through the ATI site earlier, I come across yet another thread of
                            Message 13 of 27 , Apr 4, 2005
                              Dear Ven. Yuttadhammo, Nina, Kare, Mike, Stephen, Gunnar, Rahula and
                              friends,

                              as I browsed through the ATI site earlier, I come across yet another
                              thread of advice by the Buddha, the Kula Sutta:
                              http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/anguttara/an04-255.html


                              metta,
                              Yong Peng.
                            • "Kåre A. Lie"
                              ... Dear Nina, I very much agree. The Brahmaviharas are very important for our daily life. I have already given them a prominent place in my book manuscript.
                              Message 14 of 27 , Apr 4, 2005
                                At 10:50 04.04.2005 +0200, you wrote:

                                >Dear Kåre,
                                >op 03-04-2005 22:19 schreef Kåre A. Lie op alberlie@...:
                                > >
                                > > The reason why I am interested in these matters, is that I am writing a
                                > > book (in Norwegian) on Buddhism from a humanist perspective, and I find it
                                > > useful to have some stories to illustrate that the Buddha also showed a
                                > > concern for the daily life and economics of ordinary lay people.
                                >N: That is interesting. I find that the Brahmaviharas help much for our
                                >social life. Police officers in Thailand were so interested in this subject,
                                >and Acharn Sujin gave them a talk about it. This inspired me to write some
                                >dialogues on the Brahma Viharas I had with my husband. This may be too much
                                >for the scope of your book. In case you want to see it, it is on:
                                >http://www.zolag.co.uk/
                                >Nina.

                                Dear Nina,

                                I very much agree. The Brahmaviharas are very important for our daily life.
                                I have already given them a prominent place in my book manuscript.

                                It was also interesting to read the article you gave a link to. But my book
                                is aiming at people without any special knowledge or background of
                                Buddhism, so I try to keep things a little more simple and less technical.

                                Best regards,

                                Kåre A. Lie
                                http://www.lienet.no/

                                THESAURUS (n.): An ancient reptile with
                                an excellent vocabulary.
                              • "Kåre A. Lie"
                                ... Thank you. There are many gems of worldly wisdom in the Tipitaka. Best regards, Kåre A. Lie http://www.lienet.no/ THESAURUS (n.): An ancient reptile with
                                Message 15 of 27 , Apr 4, 2005
                                  At 09:12 04.04.2005 +0000, you wrote:


                                  >Dear Ven. Yuttadhammo, Nina, Kare, Mike, Stephen, Gunnar, Rahula and
                                  >friends,
                                  >
                                  >as I browsed through the ATI site earlier, I come across yet another
                                  >thread of advice by the Buddha, the Kula Sutta:
                                  >http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/anguttara/an04-255.html
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >metta,
                                  >Yong Peng.

                                  Thank you. There are many gems of worldly wisdom in the Tipitaka.

                                  Best regards,

                                  Kåre A. Lie
                                  http://www.lienet.no/

                                  THESAURUS (n.): An ancient reptile with
                                  an excellent vocabulary.
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