Questions tagged [ethics]

Skillful and unskillful thought, speech and action. These questions include but are not limited to questions on the vinaya and precepts.

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10answers
3k views

The Third Precept and Prostitution

For a Buddhist who is single, do occasional "visits" to the brothel break the observing of the Third Precept? In other words, the Third Precept is perfectly "intact" when one engages in such activity (...
13
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15answers
3k views

Will actors really go to hell?

In the Talaputta Sutra the Buddha says that actors will either be reborn as an animal or go to hell When an actor on the stage, [he thinks that] after death, he is reborn in the company of the ...
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1answer
93 views

Buddhist origin of tobacco and its relation to Native American use

Can anything wholesome, helpful, wise and skillful be mentioned about the (Chinese and/or nearby regions) origin(s) of tobacco and how it may and/or may not relate to tobacco use among Native American ...
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4answers
181 views

Buddha's view on sexuality

In contemporary society (apart from religion) sex is mostly seen as something pleasurable, which is done even without considering childbearing. As far as I can see, Buddha taught extensively to lay ...
7
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4answers
233 views

Is it more important not to break precepts through proxy, or to not cause suffering to your family?

An important point I see is how one furthers death and lying. Through working, you are taxed, and taxes fund the breaking of the precepts. Taxes fund war and espionage, so killing and stealing are ...
13
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6answers
3k views

A Good Career for a Buddhist?

I am a business woman and my job is stressful. It is entirely motivated by greed. I want to leave my career but I have a dream to help poor people in my country and also to make my parents proud of me....
0
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3answers
76 views

Is upaya a lie?

According to upaya, the doctrine of 'skillful means', as it appears in the Lotus Sutra, was the Buddha lying when he said that there are three vehicles? Presumably he knew there was only one: so why ...
2
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4answers
579 views

Possible to intentionally kill without “intention”?

The 5 criteria of killing 1) There is life present 2) The person knows "there is life present" 3) Intention to take away the life 4) Action or speech that causes "life is taken away" 5) Life is taken ...
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6answers
137 views

Conscience and Buddhism

How does Buddhism view conscience? Do you follow your conscience or Buddhist morality? Your conscience does not always in line with Buddhist morality. For example, cakes are not poison but generally ...
2
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2answers
107 views

Can a warrior reach enlightenment?

Can someone who fights, even maybe kills or dies, for a cause he considers right, attain enlightenment? I wonder that after reading that some Buddhists did not share the Zen samurai's vision at all.
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9answers
3k views

How/Why to be moral without believing God or any supernatural entity?

Being believer or dependent on God so far in my life, I'm clueless how exactly can I become independent without turning morally Bankrupt? Being devotee I'm automatically moral & lovingly but When ...
3
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1answer
701 views

What does Buddhism say about the consequences of good and bad behaviour?

Please someone clarify: Does Buddhism believe in rebirth? There is an general belief in almost all religions that our good and bad will be carry forwarded to next and next to next generation and all, ...
3
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3answers
463 views

What is the view of Buddhism in correcting others' view in spite of their willingness to accept it?

I have these questions: If an enlightened mind sees that helping someone is beneficial to them, then would they do it even when the helped doesn't proactively ask? If they are hated by the helped, ...
7
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10answers
4k views

Plants may be sentient beings like animals so how do you decide what to eat?

There is some evidence that plants are 'sentient beings' and can communicate (e.g. see this article or this wikipedia page). However Buddhists believe eating meat is wrong because of killing a living ...
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6answers
167 views

Does Western Philosophy Have Conceptual Overlaps with Buddhism?

I think I've noticed some conceptual overlaps between Buddhism and Western Philosophy and Science. What are good sources for comparing and contrasting Western ideas and Buddhism? What are suspected ...
4
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2answers
299 views

Are some forms of employment less just to workers, according to Buddhism?

I live in a pleasant apartment complex and work as an Instructor. My job is cushy, which is good because I have health issues (and teach adults with health issues). But I watch workers mow the lawn at ...
5
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8answers
243 views

Good is not different from Bad?

In the book Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, I read the following statement: This is the basic teaching of Buddhism. Pleasure is not different from difficulty. Good is not different from bad. Bad is good;...
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4answers
476 views

Does Theravada Buddhism encourages animal release?

Does Theravada Buddhism encourages animal release? Would it be conflicting if one is under the branch Theravada Buddhism but perform animal release?
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3answers
142 views

Question on Dhammapada 124

That is a question that emerged from a previous discussion, but here I would like to focus on this story. From the background story: "Venerable Sir, is the wife of the hunter who is a sotapanna, ...
2
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4answers
458 views

Willpower in Buddhism

I don't see any other questions, in the suggestions of the site, linked with this precise topic. What is the equivalent of "willpower" in Buddhism? How is it developped? Thank you.
31
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10answers
4k views

Does illegal downloading or viewing of copyright material violate the second precept?

As a kid I used to download a lot of softwares and movies using torrents. Even if something illegal is done, it doesn't necessarily mean that it violates a precept. But can this be considered as ...
8
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3answers
237 views

How do Buddhists justify or explain that monks and/or temples amass and use wealth?

This question applies mainly to Theravada Buddhism, which is the prevailing branch of Buddhism in my country (Sri Lanka). I've observed, many times, how many temples and monks are amassing wealth and ...
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8answers
2k views

Will Buddhism last only 5,000 years after Buddha's Mahaparinirvana?

Is there any reference/citation saying that Buddhism or Buddha's teachings will last only 5,000 years after Buddha's Mahaparinirvana? How can this be possible if more people like to learn more about ...
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3answers
111 views

Are there Bad teachers? Is Mara in the Sanga?

I have had an experience with a top teacher, Regional Assistant Teacher, and Center Manager acting in ways very disturbing to the path. Later I saw clearly that they were controlled by Mara or had ...
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1answer
79 views

While body is not me or mine what is a wise response to those claiming various degrees of ownerships on body? [closed]

What are some kind, wholesome, skillful, wise and helpful responses and views to the following various claims of body ownership: “The United States government claims 100% ownership over all your DNA ...
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6answers
500 views

Should I judge the efficacy of Samadhi based on the ethical qualities of the meditator?

As far as I understand, one of the main purposes of the eight factor of the Path (samma samadhi) is to clean the mind from impurities. I've read a lot of discussions where one meditator states that ...
34
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7answers
9k views

If a buddhist should not kill a mouse living in their home, what justification do they have to rid themselves of a parasite such tapeworms

An extension of this question posted earlier: How not to kill the mouse in my house? Where does one draw the line for which forms of life are ok to destroy, and which ones are not? Is it just a ...
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4answers
341 views

Would the Buddha have considered engaging in anal sex as breaking the 1st and/or 5th precept?

Would the Buddha have considered engaging in anal sex as breaking the 1st and/or 5th precepts? I would like to know this as I am trying to better understand the 5 precepts.
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5answers
2k views

Providing a prayer for others

As someone that is actively seeking to be a Buddhist, how does one show emotional support for others in time of need? Christians offer to pray for them if someone or some person is going through a ...
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2answers
115 views

Is the reputation system counterproductive to Buddhist practice?

Are we sure that the search for credit and for approval does not infect the ego of the users of this site?
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3answers
133 views

Did the Buddha ever teach that we have a special responsibility to those we have injured?

I posted the identikit question to Christianity stackexchange, and was met with dumb silence. Which, really, I was shocked by. E.g. the parable of the good samaratin: Jesus answered, "A certain ...
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2answers
1k views

What did the Buddha say about gratitude?

I'm looking for early Sutras that talk about gratitude. I'm especially interested in if there are lists of things that we can be grateful for, and there are sources that deal with gratitude for lay ...
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3answers
336 views

metta, anxiety, and anger

I have been practicing mindful breathing for about one or two sittings a day, and done a few retreats. I have a big problem with metta, even directed at myself. after trying to practice metta I often ...
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3answers
61 views

Are social interactions always helpful in solving problems?

Whenever there is a problem we socialize. When we are sick we go to a doctor. When we are hungry we go to a cook. When we want to laugh we go to a movie. My question is : are these social ...
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3answers
50 views

Are people who say “not my problem” delusional?

I often hear people make use of the defence “that’s not my problem”. Is this a delusion in the form of rejecting no-self and denying or not seeing interdependence? Or are these people right and should ...
8
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3answers
676 views

What happens if a monk is called for jury duty?

Is it possible for a monk to be called for jury duty in the U.S.A.? If so, does the Buddhist religion prevent them from taking part int he judicial process, as it involves passing judgment on others? ...
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10answers
852 views

Should Buddhist teachers get rich?

In recent years in "Western" culture, teachings derived from Buddhist practices have been increasingly common. These teachings are often of a secular nature and are about compassion, meditation and ...
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4answers
87 views

New Year to Buddhists on 1st January?

Buddhists have a new year ,But it is not January 1st.What is the reason they celebrate the new year of January 1st.It is based on a religious basis or something else...
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2answers
64 views

Lending a friend money,and not getting it back

Last year ,I lent a friend alot of money ,he convinced me that he lost his wallet and needed money for certain payment,promising that he will return it after 3 month,he payed some of it then delayed ...
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3answers
99 views

Can Generosity be Poison?

I read on the internet Mahasi Sayadaw once said: "For example, if a generous person obtains something precious and valuable, his first thought is to offer it to someone else rather than to use ...
2
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3answers
150 views

Killing and planing to kill

As to Buddhism killing is wrong and planning such things is also wrong. So what is the difference between the Karma of a person who killed someone and a person who only planned but never killed.
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8answers
2k views

Polyamory in Buddhism

What does Buddhism say about polyamory? By polyamory I mean a consensual romantic relationship that involves more than two adult people, which may or may not involve sexual contact. Is it wholesome, ...
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13answers
1k views

If there is no self, why do anything?

My limited understanding of Buddhism has already helped me in many ways and I am very glad to have found it. With that said, I have always wondered about this title question. If there is no 'I', ...
6
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8answers
577 views

What should you do when someone teaches false Dharma?

I was part of a religious group that claimed to be everything that the Buddha teaches. But, when you listen to their teachings, you can tell discrepancies between their teachings and Buddhist ...
2
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6answers
132 views

Reconciling metta & avoiding fools/immoral people

The Buddha repeatedly said to avoid ignorant, immoral people as much as possible, but isn't this - at least a little - opposed to kindness? I associate kindness with being benevolent, caring & ...
2
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3answers
88 views

How does teaching of Buddhism deal with waste? How does teaching of Buddhism deal with acceptance even it causes unhappiness?

I'm curious to know and understand more how would a Buddhist deal with wastage under the following circumstances : i)If it was an impulsive buy and you don't like the item after that and at the same ...
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1answer
68 views

The kamma of silence and/or “not acting”?

Aside of Silas there is the matter of kamma which includes always the mind. What's the impact of acting "political correct" or "according to laws", Sila, while having unskilful intentions? Whould ...
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3answers
271 views

Why is “idle speech” one of the ten unwholesome actions?

According to the Suttas, "idle speech" is one of the ten unwholesome actions which generate bad karma. I understand why the other nine unwholesome actions would generate bad karma, but I have a lot of ...
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6answers
240 views

When you don't do akusla you do kusala?

When you don't do akusla actions you do kusala actions? And I'm aware of the middle way - harming yourself is not. And another question (you can answer whatever you like or both) When you don'...
3
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4answers
248 views

Is severing negative communication with an “incompatible” person a big no-no in the Buddhist pracice?

A close relative of mine who I shared the living space with has passed away recently from an unrelated injury. The relative was a good person but inherently "bossy", always getting their own way and ...