Thursday 22 April 2021


Can a Buddhist have fun? - Well Happy ...

'Scientists say they have evidence to show that Buddhists really are happier and calmer than other people.

'Tests carried out in the United States reveal that areas of their brain associated with good mood and positive feelings are more active.'

Health | Buddhists 'really are happier'


'A Buddhist abbot in Kanchanaburi, in Thailand, detained a 13-year-old novice at his temple residence to sexually assault the boy at will, using power and threats on his life to silence him.

'Sexual abuse is rife, both among the older and younger novices as well as between monks and novices.'

Temples no longer safe for children - Bangkok Post

'In Tibetan Buddhism, the songyum was the consort ("spiritual wife") of many high-ranking lamas. 

'Such sexual activity by the ostensibly celibate was a closely guarded secret, with only the Lama's closest associates knowing of the woman's existence as a songyum - to all outward appearance, she was just another student or nun.[1]

'Some regard the taking of a consort as a legitimate tantric practice.[2]

'Young Kalu Rinpoche, a man raised as the reincarnation of Kalu Rinpoche, broke Buddhist tradition in 2011 by relating sexual abuse he had experienced at the age of 12 by older monks in a confessional video on youtube. 

'His tutor tried to kill him when he refused to obey instructions and he became disillusioned and disgusted by the monks' obsession with money, power and control. 

'He became a drug addict and alcoholic after he turned 15, to cope with the trauma.[3]

Sogyal Rinpoche

In 1994, a $10 million[4] civil lawsuit was filed against Sogyal Rinpoche, author of the popular Tibetan Book of Living and Dying. 

It was alleged that he had used his position as a spiritual leader to induce one of his female students to have sexual relations with him. 

The complaint included accusations of infliction of emotional distress, breach of fiduciary duty, as well as assault and battery.[5][6] 

The lawsuit was settled out of court. Related allegations were later introduced by journalist Mary Finnigan, who was also the main author of the original article in 1995.[7][8][9]

Allen Ginsberg & Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

'Chögyam Trungpa's (1939-1987) sexuality has been one of the sources of controversy, as he cultivated relations with a number of his female students. 

'Trungpa had begun having sexual relations with women at age thirteen.'

'Trungpa formally renounced his monastic vows in 1969'.[11]


'Sangharakshita (born Denis Lingwood) (1925-2018) founded the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order (later known as the Tiratana Buddhist order) in Britain, 1967.

'He has been accused of pressuring a heterosexual follower, Mark Dunlop, into a sexual relationship, while living under monastic vows. 

'The report described intimate details of what Dunlop characterised as their relationship, and claimed that Sangharakshita, who declined to comment, had told him "that to develop spiritually he had to get over his anti-homosexual conditioning."[12]

'Mark Dunlop is not the only alleged victim of sex abuse within the Order. 

'There are allegations dating from the 1960's to the 1980's that there were very many sexual relationships involving ordinary members and Sangharakshita. 

'There were also relationships between ordinary members and other elders of the order. Some allegations involve willing sex, others involve sex that the ordinary member allegedly did reluctantly under pressure.' 

Eido Tai Shimano

'Eido Tai Shimano (1932-2018), the founding abbot of New York's Zen Studies Society (Rinzai School of Zen), resigned from its board in 1995 after acknowledging  sexual misconduct and abuse."[14][15]


Kyozan Joshu Sasaki (1907-2014) was the founder of the Mt. Baldy Zen Center in California (Rinzai School of Zen). Awareness of his sexual misconduct was known since the 1970s but was covered up or ignored for decades.[16]


Taizan Maezumi(1931-1995) co-founded several Zen centers in the United States (Rinzai, Sōtō and Sanbo Kyodan schools of Zen). Maezumi admitted to being an alcoholic and to having sexual relations with his female students while he was still married.[17][18]

In the past.

'Homosexual activity was actually fairly common in Buddhist monasteries (as in many single-sex environments), and gay, lesbian, intersex, and other persons labeled as queer (either by traditional Buddhist or modern social standards) did sometimes serve as monastics, whether overtly or in the closet.'

Buddhism and Sexuality: It’s Complicated



Optimists (Indonesia)

Two psychologists at the University of Victoria, New Zealand, have said: ‘Once we anticipate a specific outcome will occur, our subsequent thoughts and behaviors will actually help to bring that outcome to fruition.’

According to Pyschologist Maryanne Garry: ‘We realized that the effects of suggestion are wider and often more surprising than many people might otherwise think.’

Of course there are positive and negative aspects of this.

If we anticipate having a happy holiday, we are more likely to have a happy holiday.

If we believe a placebo is effective, we are more likely to be cured by it.

If we believe that there is no God, we are less likely to notice the evidence for an after life.

Indonesians expecting to be happy?

Dr Garry said: ‘Recent research suggests that some of psychological science’s most intriguing findings may be driven, at least in part, by suggestion and expectancies.

‘For example, a scientist, who knows what the hypothesis of an experiment is, might unwittingly lead subjects to produce the hypothesized effect - for reasons that have nothing to do with the experiment itself.’

If the media has suggested to us that Bashar Assad is a bad person, we are more likely to believe the anti Assad propaganda.

Walk through the jungle expecting to see snakes and you may well see them.

Walk through the jungle not expecting to see snakes and you probably won't see any.

Voltaire was a pessimist.

Buddha believed that we can be rid of suffering.

Optimistic Indonesians, influenced by 1500 years of Hinduism-Buddhism.

Voltaire, like Buddha, could see that there is suffering in this world.

"Imagine the situation of a Pope's daughter aged fifteen, who in three months had undergone poverty and slavery, had been raped nearly every day, had seen her mother cut into four pieces, had undergone hunger and war, and was now dying of the plague in Algiers." (Voltaire, Candide, Chapter 12)

"Do you believe," said Candide, "that men have always massacred each other as they do to-day, that they have always been liars, cheats, traitors, ingrates, brigands, idiots, thieves, scoundrels, gluttons, drunkards, misers, envious, ambitious, bloody-minded, calumniators, debauchees, fanatics, hypocrites, and fools?"

"Do you believe," said Martin, "that hawks have always eaten pigeons when they have found them?"

Voltaire appears to be pessimistic about human nature.

But, Candide was fiction and not necessarily a true reflection of all that goes on in the world.

More Indonesians

But, if hawks may not be capable of fast change, what about humans?

Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung (1875-1961) said in Memories, Dreams, Reflections:

"Natural history tells us of a haphazard and casual transformation of species over hundreds of millions of years of devouring and being devoured...

"But the history of the mind offers a different picture.

"Here the miracle of reflecting consciousness intervenes."

In other words, some beings may be becoming more kindly.

Optimists or pessimists?

Physicist David Bohm believes that life and consciousness are present in varying degrees in all matter, including supposedly inanimate matter such as electrons or plasmas.

He suggests that evolutionary developments do not emerge in a random fashion. ("David Bohm and the Implicate Order" by David Pratt)

Happiness is about forgetting your own happiness and being part of a happy team?

Standford neurophysiologist Karl Pribram believes in the holographic nature of reality.

Every part of a hologram contains all the information possessed by the whole.

In a holographic universe there are no limits to the extent to which we can alter reality.

What we see as reality is a canvas where we can draw any picture we want.

Some people manage to be happy in spite of poverty.

The Buddhists believe that what we are thinking now, is what we will become.

Research has suggested that Buddhists are able to get their brains to feel happiness.

According to Owen Flanagan, professor of philosophy at DukeUniversity in North Carolina, Buddhists appear to be able to stimulate a part of their brain which produces positive emotions and a feeling of well being.

Writing in New Scientist, Professor Flanagan referred to findings of a study by Richard Davidson, of the University of Wisconsin, who used scanners to analyse regions of a Buddhist's brain.

Parts of Buddhists brains, linked to happiness, appear to "light up" consistently.

"The most reasonable hypothesis is there is something about conscientious Buddhist practice that results in the kind of happiness we all seek," Davidson writes. (Happiness. A Buddhist perspective)

Happy lepers.

Helping unhappy people to be happy brings happiness.

A good doctor entering a ward full of sick children does not allow himself to feel depressed.

The good doctor gets on with trying to make the children happy.

Tibetan Bodhisattva Langri Tangpa wrote:

Whenever I see unfortunate beings

Oppressed by evil and violent suffering,

May I cherish them as I had found

A rare and precious treasure.

The good Buddhist empties himself (or herself) of egotism, and is therefore not going to be offended by insults.

When others out of jealousy

Harm me or insult me,

May I take defeat upon myself

And offer them the victory 

Strive for the happiness of the team, and not for your own happiness, and that will make you happy.

The happy person is the one who forgets about his own individual happiness and concentrates on making others happy. (Buddhism - Jodo Shinsu - What Is Happiness?)

Thai people - are they happier than Americans? Photo byTevaprapas Makklay 

Christmas Humphreys, 1901-83, formerly a judge in London, listed the Twelve Principles of Buddhism. (Twelve Principles of Buddhism By Christmas Humphreys)

1. Learn how to save yourself by using direct and personal experience.

2. There is continual change, a continual cycle involving birth and death.

Consciousness is continuous.

It is forever looking for new kinds of self-expression.

Life is a continous flow.

If you know there is a tsunami coming, don't stay on the beach guarding your possessions.

If you cling on to things, you will suffer, because you are resisting the flow.

3. There is only one 'ultimate reality'.

It does not change.

It is beyond our understanding.

We are all linked to it.

We are all part of the one team.

Away from the corruptions of the city.

4. What we are now is the result of our past thoughts.

We are the creator of our circumstances.

By right thought and right action we can gradually purify ourselves and eventually reach enlightenment and Nirvana and beyond.

5. We are happiest as a happy team.

We are all inter-linked and should feel compassion for everything from trees to Thais and from jaguars to Jews.

Compassion is the "Law of laws".

6. Imagine we have an urge to win at golf by cheating.

Imagine we have an urge to be the hero of the football match, by monopolising the ball.

Suffering is caused by such wrong urges.


7. To end suffering, we should have

(1) Right Views,

(2) Right Aims or Motives,

(3) Right Speech,

(4) Right Acts,

(5) Right Livelihood,

(6) Right Effort,

(7) Right Concentration or mind-development,

(8) "Cease to do evil, learn to do good, cleanse your own heart: this is the Teaching of the Buddhas".

8. Nirvana, the extinction of the limitations of selfhood, is attainable on earth.

"Look within; thou art Buddha".

9. Follow the path between the opposites, avoiding all extremes.

10. Meditation helps us to refrain from mental and emotional attachment to "the passing show".

11. The Buddha said: "Work out your own salvation" using your intuition.

Each man suffers the consequences of his own acts, and learns thereby, while helping his fellow man to the same deliverance.

12. Buddhism does not deny the existence of God or soul, though it places its own meaning on these terms. Buddhism has no dogmas, and points to man alone as the creator of his present life and sole designer of his destiny.


aangirfan: How sane, balanced, and happy are the people of the USA?.


Anonymous said...

We are indeed, all One:
perpetually co-creating Reality.

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At 23 April 2021 at 02:35 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Uniquely in Japan apparently, Buddhist temple leaders are married there

The Christian Orthodox rule, that a priest can only marry before being ordained, ensures that most of their parish priests are married

Maybe it is better that religious leaders have been married, or at least not 'consecrated' to lack of intimacy

Muslims, Jews and Confucianists may have advantages by not having covertly-gay celibacy cults ... the deception is unhealthy

80 per cent of Vatican priests gay, says writer Frédéric Martel


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