2

I've been thinking about this for quite some time, and decided to ask the forum, perhaps someone have more knowledge about this. (sorry for grammar mistakes (if there's any), English is not my first language)

Recently, I watched a film about a gay couple. I like their relationship, so I decided to support them because I saw in several Buddhist sources (including answers on Buddhism Stack Exchange) that homosexual relationship is no different than heterosexual relationship.

But then I remember that upādāna (attachment) conditions bhava (existence, becoming). So, will liking, supporting, and continuing to watch that film causes rebirth as a gay person?

If someone can clear this out for me, it'll be much appreciated

7
  • I think this can only evoke opinion. Adding to that, I'm struggling to see where the matter is. We've occupied many different forms previously, and many will follow. There is a sutta where such thinking is discouraged. I don't know the name of the sutta, but the pertinent lines are something like, what will I be in the future? How will I be in the future?... Perhaps another member can locate that for you. ;-)
    – Max
    Jul 25 at 10:41
  • @NeuroMax Thank you, I've read that sutta somewhere before. This became my concern because apparently being born as a homosexual is a result of bad karma and a transgression of the path(?) but after reading your answer, I think it's not really a problem if a person is born homosexual. So do you think there's no problem for me to continue liking & supporting that couple?
    – iyin
    Jul 25 at 11:40
  • I can't answer that question for you. We support people for many reasons. The fact that you're asking that question, suggests that you see a problem with it, so you've likely got the answer yourself. By and large, it matters not what others think. ;-)
    – Max
    Jul 25 at 11:48
  • I asked because I thought supporting them can lead to a rebirth as I mentioned above (because I thought homosexuality isn't 'ideal' according to Buddhism (is it?)). But after reading your answers, I'm pretty sure I'm convinced otherwise.. thank you for your answers!
    – iyin
    Jul 25 at 12:42
  • As a lay follower, homosexuality is negligible in terms of here-and-now lay practice. By the way, welcome to the site. Please read the help section for some useful information on how to use the site. ;-)
    – Max
    Jul 25 at 13:04
2

Since there is no normative difference between gay and straight from either a biological or a Buddhist perspective, why does it matter?

Sexual orientation is caused by a complex interplay of genetic, hormonal, and environmental influences. It's not a conscious choice. So, in the same line of reasoning, if you watch a movie where you feel sympathy for a character suffering under genetic, hormonal or environmental factors, like:

  • Sophie's Choice, you will be worried to be reincarnated as a persecuted woman?

  • a documentary on Stephen Hawking, you will be worried to be reincarnated as a man with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis?

  • a documentary on bone cancer in newborns, you will be worried to be reincarnated as a baby with bone cancer?

  • a documentary on HIV/aids ravaging populations, you will be worried to be reincarnated having HIV?

  • a documentary on tsunami victims, you will be worried to be reincarnated to die in a tsunami?

If your answer on any of these is "no", I would suggest some introspection as to why you treat that condition differently.

For clarity: I'm not comparing sexual orientation to a disease. I'm giving examples of conditions caused by genetic, hormonal or environmental factors.

2
  • I was worried because apparently what one consistently thinks and ponders about, becomes the inclination of their awareness (copied from ruben2020's answer). But your answer gives me a new way to think about this matter, thank you!
    – iyin
    Jul 27 at 1:00
  • A detective from a homicide police dept. has to constantly think and ponder about brutal crime. Except for a few statistical aberrations, none of these detectives becomes a murderer just because they ponder crime all day for their profession.
    – Codosaur
    Jul 27 at 8:00
1

Actors perform, intoxicated with the three poisons i.e. passion (also lust, greed), aversion (also hatred) and delusion, and they do so, spreading it to their audience.

Then the audience too become intoxicated with passion (also lust, greed), aversion (also hatred) and delusion, and this will affect their future, naturally, because what one consistently thinks and ponders about, becomes the inclination of their awareness.

This applies to any movie or performance, with unwholesome themes. The unwholesome theme in this case is passion or lust (lobha).

"Apparently, headman, I haven't been able to get past you by saying, 'Enough, headman, put that aside. Don't ask me that.' So I will simply answer you. Any beings who are not devoid of passion to begin with, who are bound by the bond of passion, focus with even more passion on things inspiring passion presented by an actor on stage in the midst of a festival. Any beings who are not devoid of aversion to begin with, who are bound by the bond of aversion, focus with even more aversion on things inspiring aversion presented by an actor on stage in the midst of a festival. Any beings who are not devoid of delusion to begin with, who are bound by the bond of delusion, focus with even more delusion on things inspiring delusion presented by an actor on stage in the midst of a festival.

Thus the actor — himself intoxicated & heedless, having made others intoxicated & heedless — with the breakup of the body, after death, is reborn in what is called the hell of laughter. But if he holds such a view as this: 'When an actor on the stage, in the midst of a festival, makes people laugh & gives them delight with his imitation of reality, then with the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in the company of the laughing devas,' that is his wrong view. Now, there are two destinations for a person with wrong view, I tell you: either hell or the animal womb."
SN 42.2

"Whatever a monk keeps pursuing with his thinking & pondering, that becomes the inclination of his awareness. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with sensuality, abandoning thinking imbued with renunciation, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with sensuality. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with ill will, abandoning thinking imbued with non-ill will, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with ill will. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with harmfulness, abandoning thinking imbued with harmlessness, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with harmfulness.
MN 19

Also, please see MN 57 for the story of ascetics who pretended to be animals, and SN 42.3 for the story of the warrior in battle.

8
  • So based on your answer, I think there's no differences between heterosexual or homosexual relationship then? Because both are rooted from passion/sensuality (lobha)?
    – iyin
    Jul 27 at 1:03
  • Based on the story of ascetics who pretended to be animals, we will become what we try to be (...He develops dog behavior fully and unstintingly. Having done that, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in the company of dogs). My question, so if one keeps thinking about a person s/he likes, then in the next life, that person will be born as... what? That person doesn't try to be the person he's thinking about, so in this example, the case is different from the ascetic who pretended to be animals?
    – iyin
    Jul 27 at 1:15
  • @iyin Let's put it this way. In Buddhism, you need to look at it from the perspective of mental defilements and how it causes suffering. As we can see, both are based on passion. The Acintita Sutta states: "The precise working out of the results of kamma is an unconjecturable that is not to be conjectured about, that would bring madness & vexation to anyone who conjectured about it." We cannot guess how exactly karma will play out. It's best to understand wholesome vs. unwholesome and their effects.
    – ruben2020
    Jul 27 at 3:55
  • You're right, both are based on passion, so I guess there's no need to worry about heterosexual or homosexual or anything like that since they're all the same?
    – iyin
    Jul 27 at 4:03
  • 1
    I see, thank you very much for your answers and explanations!
    – iyin
    Jul 27 at 4:56
-3

Possible, on causes and effects, see answer in related question: What makes someone become a gay? , good householder.

So now good householder goes on to watch more Mr. Bean, or else? Uposatha Silas are of much benefits, countless more, for long time happiness.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.