Monday, August 31, 2020

Thief, Boxer, Meditator (Ajahn Chah)

Ajahn Chah (ajahnchah.org) via Ven. Sujato, Ellie Askew, Dhr. Seven (ed.), Wisdom Quarterly

You may hurt me, but I'll be back to kick your...
If we have wrong understanding, we practice meditation like a thief who, after being caught, hires a lawyer to get out of trouble. Once out of trouble, we start stealing again.

Or we are like a boxer who gets beaten up, nurses the wounds, then goes off to fight again, which only brings fresh wounds. And this cycle goes on endlessly.

First I became calm then I developed insight.
The purpose of meditation is more than just calming [samadhi, absorption, bliss] ourselves from time to time, getting ourselves out of trouble [this present suffering]. Meditation is about seeing and uprooting the causes that made us uncalm to begin with.

Sex and monks and nuns (Monastic Rules)

Dhr. Seven, Ananda (eds.), Ven. Ariyesako, Monks' Rules: Laypeople Guide, Wisdom Quarterly
They have sex! They're hypocrites, liars, deceiving the world for minimal gains. We knew it!
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(II) Relationships
It's hard not to stare when you're still only human.
Buddhist monastics cannot live in complete isolation from laypeople, for their mutually supportive relationship is intrinsic to the monastic way of life.

However, it should never become an intimate or sexual relationship, for that would go against the whole purpose of leaving behind the "family or household life" with its endless "closed in" complications [43],

The "supreme life" (brahmacariya) is one that checks the display of any form of erotic desire through the actions, speech, and thoughts of a monastic. In fact, restraint from gross sexual misconduct is already part of the Five Precepts. [See Note 4].

The Eight Precepts as well as the Ten Precepts immediately refine this then the Monastic Disciplinary Code (Vinaya) manages it with even greater subtlety. One's Dharma life can then advance toward the letting go of all craving through development of the heart/mind through meditation (cultivation).

The most potent object for strong sexual craving, which the mind/heart is pining for and grasping after, is usually associated with the other sex. Therefore, many rules involve this relationship [44].

Sexual intercourse
Transgender "monk" in Tibet
The first offense of the 227 listed major rules of the Rules Recitation (Patimokkha) concerns a monastic engaging in sexual intercourse.

It is a hot issue, perhaps more today than before, going by the number of sex scandals that rock the Buddhist world in the East and West. Ven. Thiradhammo writes:

"While some of the guidelines may seem somewhat rigid or prudish, it is important to reflect upon the volatility and durability of rumor, even if untrue. The incessant sex-scandals in religious circles may provide a sufficient incentive to encourage the greatest measure of prevention and discretion" (HS, Chp.13).

The rule of celibacy (chastity) was originally laid down because of rich Ven. Sudinna. He was the son of a rich merchant, who left home to become a wandering ascetic (Buddhist monastic) only after great opposition from his family. He went away to practice Dharma, and when he came back to visit, his parents were overjoyed to see him.

So they plotted to lure him back into the lay life again. They invited him for a meal then laid out their wealth in front of him, piled up in two huge heaps of gold, while the wife he had left behind dressed herself in her most irresistibly alluring way.

Ven. Sudinna remained unmoved by all of this. After telling them to throw the gold away in the river, he referred to his former wife as "sister."

Nevertheless, when his elderly mother pleaded with him at least to give them a grandson and heir, he foolishly gave in. He had sexual intercourse with his former wife.

This first defeat offense is summarized: "A monastic who engages in any form of sexual intercourse [penetration] is defeated" (Parajika 1, BMC, p. 45).

Every form and variety of sexual intercourse with sexual penetration — be it genital, oral, or anal, whether with a female, male, or animal — is forbidden. The penalty is the heaviest one of defeat (parajika).

Intimacy — touching
I can't believe that hypocrite touched me.
The modern West is full of stories of sexual harassment. The ways the Buddha dealt with such matters should therefore not seem very strange.

If a monastic touches a person in a sexual way, one commits a very serious offense requiring formal meetings of the Monastic Community (sangha) and probation (sangha-disesa).]

The scrupulous monastic wants to remain above suspicion so, if able, will avoid all physical contact.

Hence monk's and nun's attitude toward shaking hands is to avoid them. Or if one wishes to avoid offending, because it is a warm social custom, they are kept brief. This also explains why, at least in Thailand, a receiving cloth is used to receive offerings from females. (See EN 85).

Buddhist monks are not alone in this. Catholics.
The rule was first set down by the Buddha after a Brahmin and his wife had gone to inspect Ven. Udayin's fine dwelling. [See Udāyī (2).] As Ven. Udayin was showing them around, he came up behind the lady and "rubbed up against her limb by limb."

After they had left the husband praised Ven. Udayin, but the wife was critical and explained what had happened. The Brahmin then complained, "Isn't it even possible to take one's wife to a monastery without her being molested?" This rule was then set down:

"Should any monastic overcome by lust, with altered mind, engage in bodily contact with a woman, or in holding her hand, holding a lock of her hair, or caressing any of her limbs, it entails initial and subsequent meetings of the Monastic Community" (Sanghadisesa 2, BMC, p. 100).

To be at fault the monastic must usually do some action to bring himself in contact with a female as lust overcomes his mind [45]. If he accidentally stumbles and bumps into a female, or vice-versa, or if he is accosted by one, as long as there is no intention to come into lustful contact with her, there is no offense.

However, the average monastic's mind tends to be so quick and unruly — for one is, after all, still in training and therefore not yet enlightened — that one may prefer to be super-cautious about such situations.

If a monastic touches his mother out of affection, this is still an offense but the lesser one of wrong-doing (dukkata) [46]. While gratitude to parents was strongly emphasized by the Buddha, the monastic having left the home-life and family should not cling to worldly relationships.

The only true way to fulfill one's filial obligations is by gaining insight into the Dharma and then teaching one's parents.

If a monastic is acting with lustful intentions, one incurs a grave (thullaccaya) offense for making bodily contact with a pandaka ("sex-aberrant") [homosexual, deviant, pervert, transgender, transsexual, prostitute, or eunuch] and an offense of wrong-doing for sexual contact with a male. (See BMC, p. 103).

The previous rules dealt with the monastic's physical actions. The next two rules are offenses — again of the very serious category — that concern his wrong speech towards females.

Flirting
Are you still a monk? - That was just temporary.
This rule came into being when many female visitors came together to look over Ven. Udayin's dwelling. He spoke to them in a lewd, flirtatious way so that some of them said, "It is improper. Even from our husbands we wouldn't like to hear this sort of thing." Therefore, the Buddha laid down this rule:

"Should any monastic, overcome by lust, with altered mind, address lewd words to a female in the manner of young men to a young woman alluding to sexual intercourse, it entails initial and subsequent meetings of the Monastic Community" (Sangh. 3, BMC, p. 110).

Propositioning
The following rule is very relevant today when some misguidedly believe that submitting to sex with spiritual teachers can help in their spiritual development.

Again, it was originally a lustful Ven. Udayin who was the cause of this offense. This time, he suggested to a beautiful and devout female follower that she make a "special offering" to him, that of sexual intercourse. The Buddha then set forth this rule:

"Telling a female that she would benefit from having sexual intercourse with oneself is [an offense requiring initial and subsequent meetings of the Monastic Community]." (Summary [47] Sangh. 4, BMC, p. 117). More

What about my "open marriage," Brad Pitt?

Perez Hilton (perezhilton.com); Bela, Ananda (DBM), CC Liu (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

My youth makes me free. - My fame is my luck.
Sounds like Brad Pitt doesn’t mind sharing his new girlfriend!

According to a DailyMail.com source, the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood actor met the stunning Nicole Poturalski at a high-class Berlin restaurant that is owned by her 68-year-old husband.

That’s right: Brad’s new squeeze is a married woman. But it’s not exactly cheating

The outlet reported that the 27-year-old German model is in an “open marriage” with 68-year-old restaurateur Roland Mary, who apparently met movie star Pitt before Brad ever laid eyes on his stunning wife in August of 2019.

Word on the street is the Oscar-winner became acquainted with Mary and his restaurant, Borchardt, way back in 2009 when he was filming on location in Germany for the Quentin Tarantino anti-Nazi fantasy flick, Inglourious Basterds.

I like rich, famous, powerful older men (Nicole Poturalski).
Brad returned to the city center venue in August of last year while promoting his latest Tarantino movie, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, with the director and co-stars Leonardo Di Caprio and Margot Robbie when he met Nicole for the first time. A friend of the model told MailOnline:

“Brad Pitt first met Nicole in August last year at Borchardt, which is her husband Roland’s restaurant. Brad Pitt has been coming to Borchardt for years. He knows Roland, and Nicole was at the restaurant when he came to celebrate his new film.

Brad was introduced to Roland’s wife Nicole, and she passed him her number. Nicole travels a lot for her work as a fashion model, and she connected with Brad Pitt while she was in L.A. for work.” We guess it pays to have friends in high places…or husbands.

Just a few weeks later, the model was in L.A. for a photo shoot when she reportedly met up with Brad — and the rest is herstory: As Perez Hilton previously reported, the pair were pictured together at a Kanye West concert in November 2019.

Angelina Aniston, Jennifer Jolie? (No, it's Nicole Poturalski on Instagram)

It wasn’t until earlier this week that the public caught on after the twosome were photographed looking lovey-dovey as they touched down at France’s Le Castellet Airport. They’re currently vacationing at the actor’s luxury Chateau Miraval in the south of France that he purchased with ex Angelina Jolie in 2008.

For his part, Roland — whose eatery has become a landmark in Berlin’s showbiz scene — declined to discuss his wife’s tryst with the movie star, but a source told the publication the businessman is very “philosophical” about his wife’s “close friendship” with the Hollywood heartthrob.

The friend added:

“Roland is a very philosophical guy. He has been married several times and has five children. He is not interested in negativity or jealousy. They are still married but you could describe their relationship as an ‘open marriage’.”

Whoa! We are obviously not going to shame anyone for living the way they want to live, but this does kind of put a block on any big future talk for the couple, doesn’t it? More

Sex with Sudinna: A Case for Celibacy?


A Case for Celibacy: The Sudinna Tale in the Pāli Vinaya and Its Interpretation
While Indian Buddhist monastic regulations consistently prescribe celibacy, the Vinaya [Monastic Disciplinary Code] textbooks as a rule do not provide the reasons for this prescription in a factual, analytic manner.

Narratives, allusions, and metaphors, often with a strong emotional charge, are preferred as modes of expression. This article is an attempt to elicit the arguments that the Pāli language Buddhist monastic code brings forth in favor of celibacy and to evaluate them in the light of passages that provide reasons different from the official ones.

In the Venerable Sudinna tale, the Buddha argues against sexual intercourse as increasing "thirst" [tanha = "craving, lust, desire"] and involvement in worldly matters quite explicitly, while showing concern for laypeople's opinion in rather ambiguous allusions only.

Some narrative elements, though, hint at a major concern for the public reputation of the Sangha. I argue that Buddhist monastic rules need to be analyzed in the context of general Indian sexual norms, such as those found in the rules of chastity for the student of the Vedas [sacred ancient proto-Indian texts now venerated by Hindus], if one wishes to determine what Buddhism, in turn, contributed to sexual norms in ancient Indian society.

Introduction
These rules are still followed in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Laos, and the West.
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The tale of Ven. Sudinna, which established the rule of celibacy for the Buddhist monastic order, has in recent years been the subject of intense investigation and reinterpretation, and much more is to be expected.

I came across this story in the course of my research on the Abhidharma ["Buddhist Teachings in Ultimate Terms"] doctrines on sexual misconduct [Note 1], and even though I agree with many authors that the tale contains important data for the Buddhist attitude towards sex, also for laypeople, I came to the conclusion that one purpose of the Vinaya rules needs to be considered more centrally: the preservation of the monastic community's public reputation.

Methodologically, I primarily address the ideals set forth in the sources analyzed, the intentions of the authors, and their literary tools for conveying those intentions. Another question is, then, to what extent the authors and their followers were ultimately able to live up to their ideals, in this case a Puritan lifestyle in a society that was only partly supportive. The focus of this paper is on the first aspect, prescriptive ethics, while a description of the second, their application in practice, is not attempted here [2].

Why Sexual Intercourse Leads to a Loss of Communion: The Story of Sudinna (Vin I.5)
The Pāli Vinaya tells the story of Ven. Sudinna, a monk who is most exemplary in all respects [3].

Sudinna takes great pains to break away from his very rich family life in order to become a follower of the Buddha, even acting against the advice of his friends. He should stay, they say, because he is the only son of the family and enjoys much comfort and affection.

When his parents deny their consent to his ambitions, Sudinna threatens to starve himself to death. One of his friends then approaches his parents with the argument that Sudinna would die (and then be completely lost for the family) should they keep on denying their consent.

Were they to consent, on the other hand, then there would be hope of Sudinna's return: He may not enjoy (abhiramissati) going forth from home into homelessness. So the parents agree, and Ven. Sudinna is ordained by the Buddha [4].

Ven. Sudinna then lives as "a dweller in the jungle (āraññiko), a collector of alms (pindapātiko)," but when a famine strikes the area, it comes to his mind that he should return to his hometown, seemingly in the company of other monks, where he expects his relatives to support him.

They indeed provide him with rich donations, which he disperses among his fellow mendicants. On another alms round, Ven. Sudinna comes to his own family house. He is invited in [5], and his family members try their best to make him stay, but Ven. Sudinna clearly rejects all their wishes.

Sex with Sudinna
Finally, his mother implores him to have sex with his former wife, if only to generate offspring to continue the family line. He gives in and "seeing no danger, as the precept had not been made known" [6], takes with her to the forest on the day she is fertile and impregnates her [7].

After the act has happened, the earth-gods (bhummā devā) make the following announcement: "Surely, without a stain (nirabbudo) [8], friends, is the community of Buddhist monastics ([bhikkhusa,gho]), without wretchedness. Through Sudinna, the son of the Kalandakas, has a stain (abbudam) been caused to appear (uppāditam), has wretchedness been caused to appear."

Having heard the outcry of the earth-gods, the four mahā-rāja gods (cātumahārājikā = Four Great Kings) [of the four quarters of the sky] repeat the announcement. Thus, it is heard by the Thirty-Three Gods, who repeat it, and so on, until it is resounded by the Brahmakāyikā gods:

The chorus thus rises from the earth up to the Brahma-loka instantly. Filled with remorse (kukkucca), Ven. Sudinna returns to his fellow monks and confesses his deed. They scold him heavily, and "then these monks, having rebuked Venerable Sudinna in various ways, told this matter to the Teacher."

The Buddha, after questioning Ven. Sudinna, again rebukes him in a similar way as the monks had done. Mocking Sudinna as a "stupid [foolish] person" (moghapurisa), he tells him that what he has done is unfit (ananucchaviyam), not in order (ananulomikam), unseeming (appairūpam), not samana-like (assāmanakam), unsuitable (akappiyam), not to be done (akaranīyam).

"Why are you...not able to exert the complete, completely full ascetic behavior for as long as you live?" [9]. "Has not the Dhamma been taught by me in manifold ways in order to be free from passion (virāgāya), and not in order to have... More

NOTES
1: This article is the unabridged version of a paper read at the International Conference Buddhist Narratives and Beyond in Bangkok, 2010. Since the forthcoming proceedings of this conference will contain only an abridged version, researchers are kindly requested to use solely this full version for reference purposes. I am delighted to see the publication of this paper accomplished at last, since, being engaged in a multitude of Buddhological undertakings, I had to put it aside once and again. The initial draft had already been completed in August 2006, at which point I sent my draft to Shayne Clarke for his expert comments. I have greatly profited from his remarks, while I am solely responsible for all shortcomings and misjudgments of this paper. The same applies to the suggestions I have received from many other friends and researchers, including Bhikkhu Analayo, Joanna Davies, Yasmin Fischer, Jowita and Ralf Kramer, Tina Meyer, Adelheid Mette, Ryan Ward, Mudagamuwe Maithrimurthi, and Alberto Todeschini, to all of whom I am deeply indebted.

2: A short discussion of prescriptive versus descriptive ethics is contained in Achim Bayer, The Theory of Karman in the Abhidharma-samuccaya (Tokyo: International Institute for Buddhist Studies, 2010), p. 119.

Some further methodological remarks:

a) This article is primarily based on findings in the Pāli Vinaya, with frequent reference to other classical texts or recent publications on the Vinaya and Indian asceticism. Neither of those texts, nor their combination, is representative of the Buddhist tradition as a whole, or for the original thought of the Buddha.

b) In this paper, "the Buddha," "Sudinna," and so on refer to literary characters, and I take an agnostic stance as to their historicity.

c) The reader is requested to kindly consider my use of the terms "ethics" and "morals" as rather broad and mostly overlapping. What I discuss here are values as well as behavioral principles and patterns in their literal representation.

d) I adduce original terminology (mostly Pāli) for important, paradigmatic terms, or in cases where my interpretation of a textual passage differs from interpretations by previous researchers.

e) Since this paper deals with the [Monks' Disciplinary Code] Bhikkhu Vinaya, male members of the monastic order will be primarily discussed. Even though it is at times not reflected in the language used here, much of this study is relevant for the [Nuns' Disciplinary Code] Bhikkhunī Vinaya as well. This gap in the current paper is certainly a shortcoming, but it is also an expression of my conviction that the specific rules of celibacy for nuns deserve to be treated appropriately in a separate study.

3: The original story is taught in the third book of the monastic rules (Vin III, pp. 11-21), translated by Isaline Blew Horner. See I.B. Horner, The Book of the Discipline (Vinaya-Piṭaka), 6 vols. (London: Oxford University Press, 1938-1966), Vol. 1, 21-38. For outlines and interpretations, see Janet Gyatso, "Sex," Critical Terms for the study of Buddhism, edited by Donald Lopez (London and Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 2005) 273f.; Bernard Faure, The Red Thread: Buddhist Approaches to Sexuality (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1998) 75f.; Mohan Wijayaratna, Buddhist Monastic Life: According to the Texts of the Theravāda Tradition (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990) 90f.; and Thanissaro Bhikkhu, “The Buddhist Monastic Code I” (1994) unpaginated.

4: Sudinna receives the higher (upasampadā) ordination, on which see Thomas Oberlies, "Neuer Wein in alten Schläuchen? Zur Geschichte der buddhistischen Ordensregeln," Bulletin d'Études Indiennes, Vol. 15 (1997) 176-178.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Why a boring mask, why not a creepy one?

Thom Waite (dazeddigital.com/life-culture, 7/14/20); Ashley Wells, CC Liu, Wisdom Quarterly

Would you wear one of these custom-made selfie masks?
Making face masks fashionable (instagram)
A San Francisco company has designed the latest, uncanny addition to the range of masks you can wear to help reduce the spread of coronavirus

During this coronavirus pandemic wearing a facemask has pretty much become the new normal outside the house (because the CDC says masks can reduce the risk of infection).

But why go with the plain old hospital-issue variety? Many artists, designers, and celebrities have come up with their own designs to help slow the spread of boredom, including Billie Eilish, Ariana Grande, Blackpink, and The Weeknd.

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has also raised over $1 million for charity with the sale of masks featuring his iconic works.

Anyone might find it pretty weird having a conversation when we can’t see the other person’s face, so one company has created another design that offers an “uncanny valley” solution.

Named Maskalike, the company -- founded in San Francisco by Danielle Baskin -- sells a range of facemasks, which can be customized with a person's own face, most notably a SELFIE. It is used to replace the lower half of a face with a picture of the lower half of our face.

The “selfie” masks have received a mixed reaction on social media, branded a work of genius, dystopian, and just plain creepy. (It’s hard to deny that they have an uncanny vibe about them).
  • When I go outside I put on my second face. 👃👄 pic.twitter.com/ys5pisuY1A — Danielle Baskin (@djbaskin) June 12, 2020
Masks can get creepy, very creepy. Halloween?
Besides selfies, the masks can also be designed to feature someone else’s face, with one pre-made (and already sold-out) version depicting the familiar mouth, moustache, and chin of the Hide The Pain Harold meme. It's no less creepy, obviously, but if it encourages people to wear a mask then there’ll be no complaints from us.

Custom face masks (digitalcameraworld.com)
View more of Maskalike’s designs below. Recently, another mask innovation came in the wake of coronavirus, with a Japanese startup developing the “c-mask,” which doubles as a way to translate conversations into nine different languages. More
  • I’m either stoic and hardened. Nervous and sad. Surreal and serious. Or just my smiling self. pic.twitter.com/1RleMjl63c — Danielle Baskin (@djbaskin) July 13, 2020
What if it's not even caused by a "virus"?
We're being bombarded with 5G (fifth generation) cell phone tower radiation (stop5G.net).

Dr. Thomas Cowan, MD: An American doctor in 2020 explains "COVID-19" novel corona "virus."

Alan Watts: Life is NOT a journey (video)

Alan Watts (alanwatts.org) via After Skool; Seth Auberon, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


Life is NOT a Journey
After Skool is cool.
Alan Watts (1915–1973) was a self-proclaimed "spiritual entertainer" living in California, a British philosopher, Pacifica Radio host, writer, and speaker best known as the eminent interpreter and popularizer of Eastern philosophy for a Western audience.

Alan Watts wrote many books.
Life is a gift. And his philosophy seems to transcend ego, politics, and limitations. His monologues have a powerful way of connecting temporally remote abstract ideas with the present moment. His words have a unique way of putting life into perspective.

These animations take a tremendous amount of time and effort. Help keep the After Skool channel running by supporting it on Patreon. Generosity means the world. For more interesting animation, subscribe! And send in video ideas or get in touch to make an animation.

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Do some monks really eat meat?

Ven. Ariyesako (The Bhikkhus' Rules: A Guide for Laypeople compiled and explained by Bhikkhu Ariyesako, Meat Eating); Dhr. Seven, Ananda (DBM), Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
Hey, let's prepare vegan food and offer it with our own hands to the monks and nunsa. - Yes.
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Don't kill, and don't pay butchers to kill (TNH).
In Western countries compassionate and environmental vegetarianism is increasing in popularity, and this has led to questions about Buddhist monastics and meat eating.

The question of monks and nuns' eating meat is an old one, which was once explicitly raised by the "renegade monk" Ven. Devadatta (Buddhism's Judas figure, who was the brother of Prince Siddhartha's wife and his cousin, who was a monk for a long time practicing to develop psychic powers rather than wisdom or compassion).

He asked the Buddha to prohibit wandering ascetics from eating fish and flesh of all kinds in a ploy to usurp the Buddha and take over the leadership of the Monastic Community (Sangha).

It was Devadatta's "stricter ascetic" tactic, suggesting he would be a better leader with purer standards. The Buddha had already established a strict rule for both monastics and laypeople about not taking life (see Killing), so he disagreed with Devadatta's ploy.

The Buddha allowed monastics to eat meat and fish [88] except under the following circumstances:

If a monastic sees, hears, or so much as suspects that it has been killed for one, that monastic is forbidden to eat it [89] (M.I,369).

A modern Theravada monk on alms round in England (Ajahn Manapo/Forest Monastery).
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If a monastic is given meat on alms round and has no knowledge about how the animal was murdered [90], that monastic has to "receive it with attentiveness." To receive it does not necessarily mean to eat it. (See the Sekhiya Trainings.)

One should be grateful and recollect that food one is given is what enables one to continue to live the monastic, wandering ascetic, mendicant life, and as a mendicant one is not in a position to choose what one is given.

If one later comes to know the family and they ask about the Dharma, one will be able to explain the precept about not killing. This may cause them to reflect on their attitude toward meat eating.

An individual layperson can choose whether to be a vegan, vegetarian, or whatever. Problems usually arise only when vegetarians try to impose their choice on others. As meal times are normally a family or shared affair, this can create tensions and misunderstandings.

An individual monastic who lives on alms food cannot make such choices. Often the donors are unknown — perhaps not even Buddhist, or just starting to find out about Dharma — and to refuse their generosity may so offend them that they never have anything to do with Dharma again.

Karma: Wish I'd donated pure vegan food!
Finally it comes down to the laypeople who go to the market to buy food to give to monastics [who commit a kind of killing by paying others to kill when buying slaughtered and butchered animals, being complicit in that killing by paying for it].

If they are vegetarian themselves or like to give pure food, then the monastic should receive that food with "appreciation" — especially if it means that fewer animals are being tormented and slaughtered.

Nevertheless, it should not become a political issue where other people are attacked for their behavior. Source

COMMENTARY: Note the strong bias of meat eating monks and scholars who present the Buddhist view on this subject. For it is easier to change anyone's religion than his or her diet. Ask a vegan and get a whole different reading of what the Buddhist Monastic Code says, as one can point to many back stories and examples where vegetarianism was the norm for wandering ascetics, yogis, shamans, Brahmins, and spiritual seekers in the East. Few people, who themselves rarely ate meat, would ever think to give it to renunciants. For there was a time when everyone knew, which is to say it was common knowledge, that flesh does not conduce to dispassion, letting go, and purity. But it is not by diet alone that one would ever gain these three things, which is what Buddhism contributed to ancient Indian spirituality. Diet is a component of a spiritual life, not a be all end all. Practice compassion and wisdom.

Chicano Moratorium: No War on Vietnam

FUSION, Aug. 29, 2016; Crystal Quintero, Pfc. Sandoval, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


(Fusion) White war-loving racism strikes again, as Los Angeles police kill four peaceful demonstrators marching against imperial U.S. involvement in Vietnam. It was called the "Chicano Moratorium" in 1970, when 30,000 marched through East Los Angeles. Meet Rosalio Munoz, the man keeping the memory of it alive.
What was the Chicano Moratorium?
Chicanos are people of Mexican descent blending indigenous, European, and other blood.
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It was formally known as the National Chicano Moratorium Committee Against The Vietnam War, a movement of Chicano anti-war activists that built a broad-based coalition of Mexican-American groups to organize opposition to the U.S. War on Vietnam.

Led by activists from local colleges and members of the Brown Berets, a group with roots in the high school student movement that staged walkouts in 1968, the coalition peaked with a August 29th, 1970 march in East Los Angeles that drew 30,000 demonstrators [Note 1].

The march was described by scholar Lorena Oropeza as "one of the largest assemblages of Mexican Americans ever" [2]. It was the largest anti-war action taken by any single ethnic group in the USA. It was second in size only to the massive U.S. immigration reform protests of 2006 [3].

The event was reportedly watched by the Los Angeles FBI office, who later "refused to release the entire contents" of their documentation and [COINTELPRO] activity [4].

The Chicano Moratorium march in East L.A. was organized by Chicano activists Ramsés Noriega and Rosalio Muñoz [5]. Muñoz was the leader of the Chicano Moratorium Committee until Nov. 1970.

On that date he was ousted by Eustacio (Frank) Martinez, a police informer and agent provocateur for the ATF (Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms) Enforcement Division of the U.S. Treasury Department, who committed illegal acts as a pretext to allow the police to raid the headquarters of the committee and make arrests [6].

Muñoz had returned as co-chair of the Moratorium in February 1971 [7]. More

Mexican-Americans oppose Vietnam War

Tom Myrdahl; TheAssociationTV; Pfc. Sandoval, Crystal Quintero, A. Wells, Wisdom Quarterly


Mexican-American/Chicano Marines in Vietnam
Fifty years ago today, August 29th, the "Chicano Moratorium" against the U.S. War on Vietnam hit its height with a march through East L.A.

Loyola-Marymount film student Tom Myrdahl shot this documentary, capturing the events that unfolded as the FBI infiltrated and racist LAPD troopers attacked peaceful demonstrators in and around Laguna Park.

This film has not been seen in nearly 40 years. Myrdahl, who still works as a cameraman in L.A., put this historic footage on the Web as a tribute to the brave citizens, La Raza, of East L.A. who came together 50 years ago to demonstrate their dissent against U.S. imperialism and the War on Vietnam.

Rev. MLK Jr. and Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh
Seven years earlier, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech in Washington, DC during an Aug. 28, 1963 civil rights march. In 1967 MLK Jr. delivered a powerful speech that got him assassinated by the FBI, the "Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence" speech at Riverside Church, supported by his friend, the Vietnamese Buddhist monk and fellow peace laureate nominee Thich Nhat Hanh.

Friday, August 28, 2020

The meat eating monks of Myanmar (video)

Host Sonny Side, Producer Lady Goo Goo, Shizuka Anderson (Best Ever Food Review Show, March 25, 2020); Ellen Page; Sayalay Aloka, Dhr. Seven, Pat Macpherson (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


Donated diet of Myanmar monks
Monks rise up to overthrow military dictator.
MANDALAY, Burma - Myanmar is a war-torn country under little known military dictator General Than Shwe, now hiding with his junta and billions of dollars of embezzled funds from resource-rich and utterly impoverished Burma, which Gen. Shwe renamed Myanmar after putting Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest after she won democratic elections.

Ellen Page introduces us to Asia's "Hitler" General Than Shwe of Burma

I sold out to be in Parliament.
(See Beyond Rangoon for the Hollywood version and Burma VJ for documentary footage shot during the subsequent "Saffron Revolution," as monks stood up in protest to bring down the corrupt government only to be met with extreme military violence and fake democratic reforms ushered in by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and best-fake president ever, B.S. Obama).

The Irish monk a century ago
ABOUT THIS EPISODE: Sonny goes to Myanmar, all the way to Mandalay, to see what they eat on the streets and, more importantly, in the temples. Buddhist monks and novices rely on alms, donated food prepared by the local community.

Although the country is very Buddhist, like neighboring Mahayana China, monks may eat most donated things -- even slaughtered animals -- so long as they neither "see, hear, or suspect" that such animals have been killed to feed them. (They do not seem to concern themselves too much with this rule from the Monastic Disciplinary Code or Vinaya, and the locals do not seem to know the rule at all).
InsightMyanmar's Western view on Buddhism
So as long as they are neither killing nor tacitly/implicitly approving of killing, all kinds of spicy and somewhat low-grade foods (white rice, stale oils, toxins, preservatives, chemicals, MSG, flavorants, etc.) are donated and consumed. The villagers are poor but generous, and they give the best they have.

To find out what that "mystery dish" the monks eat in the morning is, Sonny becomes a novice or samanera (a "little shaman," a wandering ascetic in training), a temporarily-ordained monastic, to find out. He gains rare insight into the Theravada monkhood, living conditions in the developing world, Asian customs, and the vulgar "street" food of poor countries. He ordained at AUNG MYAY THAR ZAN MONASTERY, Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda Road, Pathein Gyi Township, Mandalay.

There are no full nuns in Burma only sayalays..
BREAKFAST: Deep fried tofu, fish curry with tomatoes, fried chili with white rice.

At A MYE KAUNG RESTAURANT, 30th Street, between 66th and 67th Street, they dared him to sample stir-fried chicken butts (anus, entrails, offal, intestines, fecal matter tainted flesh) with chopped up veggies and heavy garlic mash. Smoking hot pan of low-grade cooking oil and ginger, garlic, chili, onion, chicken butts (anus tips), carrot, bell pepper, oyster sauce, soy sauce, chicken powder, and salt coated in sweet thick soy sauce and scallion and stirred.

Little has changed in ancient parts of Asia.
He also swallowed boiled beef (cow) tripe (anal tract) and tongue (with white coat of saliva, mucus, and film of bacterial colonies): Tripe and tongue doused in salt, garlic, ginger, and rice wine boiled served with the biel sauce (ground coriander, basil, herbs mix with biel juice).

He also got drunk and tore into grilled sparrows (little city birds) and doves (white pigeons) marinated in pungent garlic, ginger, paprika, and rice wine, then burned to a charcoal crisp headless.
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🥒ABOUT BEFRS: Sonny is from the U.S. currently calling Vietnam home. He’s been living in Asia for 10 years and started making food and travel videos to document his experiences. He travels [like murdered Anthony Bourdain] to different parts of the world, hunting down and documenting unique foods in each country.

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🎬CREDITS
  • DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY » Nguyễn Tân Khải
  • CAMERA OPERATOR » Nguyễn Minh Đức
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  • PRODUCER » Huỳnh Hà My
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  • COLOR & MASTER » Quí Nguyễn
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