Examples: Monday, today, last week, Mar 26, 3/26/04
Welcome home! Please contact lincoln@newbuddhist.com if you have any difficulty logging in or using the site. New registrations must be manually approved which may take up to 48 hours. Can't log in? Try clearing your browser's cookies.

Civil Disobedience

ScottPenScottPen Maryland Veteran

OK I'm not talkin Thoreau here. I mean Gautama. Did he ever say anything about civil disobedience?

Comments

  • JasonJason God Emperor Arrakis Moderator

    No, not that I'm aware of. That said, I definitely think that civil disobedience can be part of right action when it's done to confront injustice and harm. The civil rights movement in the US and the fight against British rule in India are both excellent examples of the power of non-violent civil disobedience.

    ScottPenpersonkandoherberto
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @Jason said:
    No, not that I'm aware of. That said, I definitely think that civil disobedience can be part of right action when it's done to confront injustice and harm. The civil rights movement in the US and the fight against British rule in India are both excellent examples of the power of non-violent civil disobedience.

    I would add however, that human beings being what humans are, some of the consequences of BOTH above issues have been less than favourable.... which merely serves to illustrate that no matter how pure, compassionate, loving and well-intentioned OUR actions are, we can never, ever hope to ensure that all bases are covered. Someone, something somewhere along the line, either by accident or design, will mess it up. And we can' predict that, or affect it.

    The moral of the story is, be kind, do no harm and love.
    The remainder is a "throw it all up in the air and see where it lands...."

    personKundoherberto
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    The Buddha set up was based on limited options, possibilities and understanding. We live in a different situation.

    I prefer Civil Obedience.
    That is I obey civil laws. Imperialism and racism are not civil.

    In my country at the moment, I can support and get involved in green politics, public consultations and protest against corporate and government excess.

    Here are some tips from earlier ...
    http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/25224/militant-dharma

    Vastmindkandoherberto
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    I equate Civil Disobedience with Passive Resistance. Heavily underpinned by the 8 and the 5....

  • VimalajātiVimalajāti Whitby, Ontario Veteran

    This is unrelated to Buddhist scriptures, but the OP maybe wish to look into the various Maitreya Rebellions and the White Lotus Society in China.

  • JasonJason God Emperor Arrakis Moderator

    @federica said:

    @Jason said:
    No, not that I'm aware of. That said, I definitely think that civil disobedience can be part of right action when it's done to confront injustice and harm. The civil rights movement in the US and the fight against British rule in India are both excellent examples of the power of non-violent civil disobedience.

    I would add however, that human beings being what humans are, some of the consequences of BOTH above issues have been less than favourable.... which merely serves to illustrate that no matter how pure, compassionate, loving and well-intentioned OUR actions are, we can never, ever hope to ensure that all bases are covered. Someone, something somewhere along the line, either by accident or design, will mess it up. And we can' predict that, or affect it.

    The moral of the story is, be kind, do no harm and love.
    The remainder is a "throw it all up in the air and see where it lands...."

    Even still, I think that opposing slavery and oppression is always superior to supporting it or turning a blind eye regardless of the unintended consequences. Civil rights > slavery and segregation; Indian independence > colonialism; etc.

    Vastmindfedericakandoherberto
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @Jason said:

    @federica said:

    @Jason said:
    No, not that I'm aware of. That said, I definitely think that civil disobedience can be part of right action when it's done to confront injustice and harm. The civil rights movement in the US and the fight against British rule in India are both excellent examples of the power of non-violent civil disobedience.

    I would add however, that human beings being what humans are, some of the consequences of BOTH above issues have been less than favourable.... which merely serves to illustrate that no matter how pure, compassionate, loving and well-intentioned OUR actions are, we can never, ever hope to ensure that all bases are covered. Someone, something somewhere along the line, either by accident or design, will mess it up. And we can' predict that, or affect it.

    The moral of the story is, be kind, do no harm and love.
    The remainder is a "throw it all up in the air and see where it lands...."

    Even still, I think that opposing slavery and oppression is always superior to supporting it or turning a blind eye regardless of the unintended consequences. Civil rights > slavery and segregation; Indian independence > colonialism; etc.

    Oh goodness, yes; I totally and unquestionably agree. i'm certainly not even implying that Gandhi or King were wrong or misguided. Not at all.
    I'm merely saying that sadly, once the furore has died down, and things have settled, human Egos come into play, and those both contemporarily involved and up-and-coming involved, start having agendas and seek gratification, satisfaction and one-upmanship, and not always ideally or peaceably. I'm sure if they were alive, both great men might at times have protested "No, hang on, that's not at all what I meant....!"
    Ideals, left to the ministrations of others, sadly often veer away from the ideal....

    herberto
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    @federica said:
    Whatsoever you choose to do, do it with unilateral and unbiased wisdom, compassion and love.

    My sort of politics. <3

    I like too many, am mostly an armchair politico. :3

    Most politicians should be grabbed by the balls or pussy and led to the nearest jail. Which funnily enough is most politics ... :p

    I feel it is better to be a diplomat as @federica describes and perhaps read The Art of Worldly Wisdom instead of the news ...

    In one word, be a Saint.

    So is all said at once. Virtue is the link of all perfections, the centre of all the felicities. She it is that makes us prudent, discreet, sagacious, cautious, wise, courageous, thoughtful, trustworthy, happy, honoured, truthful, and a universal Hero. Three HHH's make us happy—Health, Holiness, and a Headpiece.
    http://www.sacred-texts.com/eso/aww/aww15.htm

    Viva la revolución! 🕊

  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited June 27

    Well said @mindatrisk <3

    Personally I am notoriously cowardly. What if we get arrested by the thought police and put in room 101?

    Mummy! 😱

    herberto
  • personperson Don't believe everything you think 'Merica! Veteran
    edited July 25

    I watched a TED talk recently on moral behavior in animals and a finding I hadn't been aware of made me think of this thread.

    Just the portion relating to the specific study.

    From the actual studies abstract.
    ...prosocial choices occurred both in response to solicitation by the partner and spontaneously without solicitation. However, directed requests and pressure by the partner reduced the actor's prosocial tendency...
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21825175

    So basically, drawing attention to itself increased the likelihood that the chimpanzee with the power to make the choice would make the prosocial choice. But direct pressure or coercion actually reduced the prosocial choice.

    I think this just relates to personal relations, which can be expanded to include how people react to political movements. That's not to say that more coercive actions wouldn't be required to change hardened institutions or policies. Just that every action has a reaction and different strategies have different costs.

    herberto
  • DhammikaDhammika Veteran

    Someone recently made the observation that the increasing tribalism in American political discourse has led to a predominant tone of ‘contempt’ on both sides toward the person on the other side of the argument. An act of civil disobedience these days (or per @lobster civil obedience) would be to retain a civil demeanor even in the midst of life and death politics. Easier said than done. Right Speech is not for sissies.

    There is a reason that of Bhante Gunaratana’s 8 Lifetime Precepts for lay folk, no less than four have to do with speech (‘I undertake the training vow to abstain from false speech...malicious speech...harsh speech...useless speech.’) Which is MOST speech for us Stumblebum School of Buddhist Practicioners some days. Practice, practice, practice...

    We could start a whole other thread on living up to the Buddha’s proscriptions in The Simile of the Saw (which Gandhi manifested in the self-control of ahimsa which guided his campaign of civil disobedience to free India of British control. Also not for sissies):

    “Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: 'Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic, with a mind of good will, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading these people with an awareness imbued with good will and, beginning with them, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an awareness imbued with good will — abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.' That's how you should train yourselves.

    "Monks, if you attend constantly to this admonition on the simile of the saw, do you see any aspects of speech, slight or gross, that you could not endure?"

    "No, lord."

    "Then attend constantly to this admonition on the simile of the saw. That will be for your long-term welfare & happiness.”

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.021x.than.html

    Vimalajātipersonlobster
  • VimalajātiVimalajāti Whitby, Ontario Veteran
    edited July 25

    @Dhammika said:
    We could start a whole other thread on living up to the Buddha’s proscriptions in The Simile of the Saw (which Gandhi manifested in the self-control of ahimsa which guided his campaign of civil disobedience to free India of British control. Also not for sissies):

    “Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: 'Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic, with a mind of good will, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading these people with an awareness imbued with good will and, beginning with them, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an awareness imbued with good will — abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.' That's how you should train yourselves.

    Basic kindness is the most profoundly difficult lesson of the Buddha, let alone the extraordinary kindness espoused in the above scripture, and it is also the most gruelling and difficult daily practise to undertake.

    Dhammikapersonkando
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Unless the two handled saw weilders start with my tongue, I am not so sure sure of my gentle speech ... I iz a fuck%&g dharma failure. Oh the shame! :3

    I swear when I knock over a jar of cinnamon. 🤐
    I swear I try.

    @Vimalajāti said:
    Basic kindness is the most profoundly difficult lesson of the Buddha, let alone the extraordinary kindness espoused in the above scripture, and it is also the most gruelling and difficult daily practise to undertake.

    So true! Would a muzzle help? Stoicism?

    Seneca suggest that it is okay to grieve, but grieving should be moderate and not unseemly. Or as he puts it, "we may weep, but we must not wail."
    http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/12212/distinguishing-between-buddhism-and-stoicism

  • paulysopaulyso usa Veteran

    @lobster said:
    Seneca suggest that it is okay to grieve, but grieving should be moderate and not unseemly. Or as he puts it, "we may weep, but we must not wail."

    that's interesting.i had a good cry about an aspect of me,and a good laugh.i rarely do woe is me cries,been there done that.i guess those tears where about understanding.and the good laugh life shapes us all and believing dao spirit got my back. i hope seneca smiles.i didnt wail.

    kandolobster
  • kandokando northern Ireland Veteran

    @Dhammika said:
    We could start a whole other thread on living up to the Buddha’s proscriptions in The Simile of the Saw (which Gandhi manifested in the self-control of ahimsa which guided his campaign of civil disobedience to free India of British control. Also not for sissies):

    “Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: 'Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words.

    OK, I'm afraid I'll pass on this one! Any bandits coming at me with saws can expect a fight! >:)

  • ScottPenScottPen Maryland Veteran

    @kando said:

    @Dhammika said:
    We could start a whole other thread on living up to the Buddha’s proscriptions in The Simile of the Saw (which Gandhi manifested in the self-control of ahimsa which guided his campaign of civil disobedience to free India of British control. Also not for sissies):

    “Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: 'Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words.

    OK, I'm afraid I'll pass on this one! Any bandits coming at me with saws can expect a fight! >:)

    I'd probably beat feet, unless they're coming to build a deck in my backyard

    kando
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Right Speech is not for sissies.

    Yes.

    Buddha Bro was almost assassinated for peace talking. Tsk, tsk ...
    Sometimes he had to rebuke the Sangha bad boys ...
    http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/buddhism/disciples15.htm

Sign In or Register to comment.