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OfflinePedM
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Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual
    #4253974 - 06/03/05 11:08 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

To me, Spirituality is about self-improvement. In otherwords, it's about transforming one's self in to a being who is more happy and healthy, to the ultimate end of liberation from suffering and finally full enlightenment.

As some of you know, I'm involved in a loving relationship with two women, polygamously. One of those women, we'll call her V, recently came into some adversity caused by the negligent actions of her roomates. What happened was this: V's roomate, we'll call him S, neglected to register his car, insure it, or renew his license, because he had over $1000 of outstanding speeding and parking tickets. He decided that he would ignore the law and continue driving without registration, insurance, or a license. Today, the law caught up with him, and, long story short, he has the option either to pay $6000 in fines (plus the 1000 he already owes), have his wages garnished, or go to jail.

V and S just moved into their apartment, and are very shaky ground financially without all of this. V has a child. S has thrown V and her child into tremendous turmoil because now they must face the following reality: If S pays the fine in full, they lost the apartment. If S chooses to have his wages garnished, they lose the apartment. If S chooses to go to jail, they lose the apartment. Put simply, his negligence, his incompetence, and his ignorance, has thrown V and her child into peril. Very irresponsible.

That made me angry. V is very important to me and I'm doing my very best to help her improve her quality of life. For S, in his ignorance, to cause this kind of financial disruption is unbelievable and it makes me very angry with him, like I want to hurt him or criticize him. Now, because I don't want to feel this way, I took refuge in the three jewels. So I prayed.

And I prayed and I prayed for a long time. After a while, I felt compelled to consult the advice of Shantideva, in his book Guide to the Bodhisattva's way of life. I opened the book to the following verses:

I do not become angry when the cause of suffering
Is something inanimate, such as sickness;
So why become angry with animate causes,
For they too are controlled by other conditions?

All the shortcomings there are,
And all the non-virtues,
Arise through the force of other conditions -
They do not govern themselves.

And so these two verses opened up a little window of compassion for S. I was able to recognize for a moment that all of things which led him to make his perilous mistake were the culmination of many causes and conditions which were out of his control. I considered his upbringing, which was very poor and neglected. I considered the opinion he has of himself, which is obviously low and unambitions. I considered how long he has been this way: many years. I considered his avoidance tendencies, his tendencies to avoid difficulty and confrontation, and the horrible situations which made him that way.

And so suddenly he was not an aggressor or someone to feel animosity toward. He was someone to love and to cherish.

But something else in the back of my mind nags at me. It says this: Those two verses, do they not simply absolve people of responsiblity for their own actions? Isn't it the essence of spiritual living to accept responsiblity for one's self and actions? Isn't it the antithesis to absolve ourselves and others of that accountability by recognizing the myriad of causes and conditions which lead to our inappropriate actions?

What do you guys think?


--------------------


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4254302 - 06/04/05 12:46 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

So in short, V has no financial responsibility that someone else's error can so easily put her in turmoil? I don't see what one has to do with the other. I have had roommates and if they were put in jail, it would have had minimal impact on me.


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


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InvisibleLe_Canard
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4254303 - 06/04/05 12:46 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

Well, I'm of the opinion that a person is mostly responsible sometimes for his/her situation. The guy knew he had those tickets and should have accepted responsibilty for them. I'm not totally unsypathetic to his plight, but it looks like it was his own fault.

Be that as it may, you should invite V and her child to live with you for a while, if you possibly can. Or find some friend who will. Sad she and her kid have to suffer this guys irresponsibility. I know that's not quite the answer to your question, and I'm sorry. I tend to be more a pragmatist in this sort of thing....


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OfflinePedM
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Swami]
    #4254541 - 06/04/05 02:04 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

V's options are limited; she doesn't have the luxuries most of us do when it comes to picking and choosing roomates. Who in the paper is going to respond to the ad: "29 year old woman with a 2 year old child seeking respectable roomate to help with babysitting and to pay half the bills."?

My question doesn't have to do with how I should help V through this. It has to do with how I should be looking at S. I want to know what view is most rational.


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Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4254636 - 06/04/05 02:34 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

1. respectfully i think you already perceive him a certain way and arguing yourself into one or other belief is dishonest with yourself

2. forget rational, be pragmatic. what's the point of anger? anger is the only different between your two perspectives. in this situation let's say "hold accountable" is better; in situation tomorrow "hold unaccountable" may be better. stances towards others are means to ends.


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"consensus on the nature of equilibrium is usually established by periodic conflict." -henry kissinger


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InvisibleRavus
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4254664 - 06/04/05 02:42 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

Is there really any choice? The reason we put free will on such a high pedestal is because it makes us feel good about putting people in jail or killing them, but what if this really was a deterministic universe, and S was just following all the causes that had finally led him to his current predicament? What if he has no choice?

If so, then neither do you have a choice, for the decision of how you will view S is going to be simply by causes and effects. If there is a choice, then S chose to do what he did, but if so, you still have the options to forgive S and love him or do otherwise. If you hold stress and contempt over this, it will only hinder your own life, but that is the natural reaction- we humans hinder our lives to help others.

No one will tell you the answer, for nobody truely knows it for themselves. But you seem to be getting yourself entangled Ped, and if you truely want to reach enlightenment, will entanglement and human drama help?


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So long as you are praised think only that you are not yet on your own path but on that of another.


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OfflineSneezingPenis
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ravus]
    #4255028 - 06/04/05 05:00 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

to be a slave to your environment , and your conditions, is to relenquish all control of self.... I think this applies to both V and S....

free will exists for those who are impeccable in exercising free will. Stupidity and ignorance is not an external force.


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4255079 - 06/04/05 05:35 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

his perilous mistake were the culmination of many causes and conditions which were out of his control. I considered his upbringing, which was very poor and neglected. I considered the opinion he has of himself, which is obviously low and unambitions. I considered how long he has been this way: many years. I considered his avoidance tendencies, his tendencies to avoid difficulty and confrontation, and the horrible situations which made him that way.

Sounds reminiscent of the classical American cop-out that nothing is my fault, not even when everything that happened was due to my own action/inaction.

My stance: you make your own bed, NOW SLEEP IN IT!


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4255086 - 06/04/05 05:39 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

I still don't get it. Why is the male responsible for his situation, but your girlfriend is not? Oh, wait I understand - you are not sleeping with him. Responsibility has to do with body parts and relationships...  :rolleyes:


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Ped]
    #4255087 - 06/04/05 05:39 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

V's options are limited;

Who limited them? Some non-entity or herself? Who allowed her to become pregnant with no or insufficient education to make a living and in so doing greatly increase the difficulty of living? Another non-entity or herself?

You may call me incompassionate, but nothing could be farther from the truth. I just don't make excuses for the consequences of my actions and don't accept any from others either.


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


Edited by Diploid (06/04/05 05:48 AM)


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Diploid]
    #4255088 - 06/04/05 05:40 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

See above post.


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


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InvisibleIcelander
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Swami]
    #4255218 - 06/04/05 09:59 AM (11 years, 5 months ago)

Swami and Diploid, :thumbup
________________________________________________________________
his perilous mistake were the culmination of many causes and conditions which were out of his control
_______________________________________________________________--

I doubt these thing were out of his control. Things may happen to us from outside, but we choose how to react, and then choose how to respond, thereby co-creating our future.

Sooner or later each of us on any kind of growth to maturity or spirituality, must be willing to be responsible for our lives and quit blaming the past or present or future or the actions of others for our difficulties.

This women needs to learn and grow from her mistakes just like anyone else and to protect or defend her helplessness just delays her growth process. And yours. :heart: :mushroom2:


--------------------
"Don't believe everything you think". -Anom.

" All that lives was born to die"-Anom.

With much wisdom comes much sorrow,
The more knowledge, the more grief.
Ecclesiastes circa 350 BC


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Invisibleuriahchase
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Icelander]
    #4255525 - 06/04/05 12:30 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

i like what diploid said about making excuses and facing the consequence of our action!

but ill admit i didnt read any of the previous posts...well i skimed thru 'em a bit:smirk:


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Wanting to be someone else is a waste of the person you are -Kurt Cobain
       



     
Hotter than the left sink handle.


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OfflinePedM
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: uriahchase]
    #4255891 - 06/04/05 02:34 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

>> Who limited them? Some non-entity or herself? Who allowed her to become pregnant with no or insufficient education to make a living and in so doing greatly increase the difficulty of living? Another non-entity or herself?

Thanks everyone for the replies. They clarify things. I see now that I've been giving S too little credit and V too much credit. The reason I've been giving V too much credit is because of my attachment to her. What Swami and Diploid have helped me understand is that V's involvement in this situation is as much her responsibility as it is S'. Although S is entirely responsible for driving the car illegally, V is entirely responsbile for ariving at this problem. There is no real discrimination between "inside" the problem and "outside".


>> respectfully i think you already perceive him a certain way and arguing yourself into one or other belief is dishonest with yourself

I do already perceive him in a certain way. That way is negative. I understand that perceiving people and things negatively is optional, and because it does me no service to see him negatively, I look for alternative viewpoints. In itself, that is not dishonesty.

The point at which I become entangled has to do with a moment of hesitation. I'm reluctant to settle upon a more compassionate viewpoint because I'm concerned about whether or not that alternative viewpoint is valid, or if it is based on ignorance to some of the more unpallatable facts and exageration of those facts which are more pleasing.

While I don't want to be slave to negativity, I want to escape that slavery without becoming trapped by dishonest, airheaded koombayahism. Having escaped negative cycles, I'm no better off if I've lost touch with reality and drifted into la-la land.


>> But you seem to be getting yourself entangled Ped,

Yep. Story of my life.


>> and if you truely want to reach enlightenment, will entanglement and human drama help?

Well, we find liberation through a proper understanding of the nature of samsara and the human drama which keeps us distracted from samsara's exit. I'm not trying to become entangled here. I'm just trying to follow the right path, to make the right choice, and not to make debilitating mistakes. It's in this effort that I keep finding myself tangled up in logic webs.

I'm just not the kind person who will adopt a more compassionate disposition because it's the right thing to do, or because somebody of reverence told me it was the right thing. It needs to arise spontaneously, from the inside. That is the only way it will be genuine. My problem is that whenver such feelings arise, my tendency is to doubt their basis, and to suspect some kind of self-deception.

While I long to be more compassionate, loving, and bodhisattva-like, I will not allow myself to become so if it means some compromise between myself and my allegiance to the truth.

What it all boils down to, I suppose, is that I don't trust myself.

Thanks everybody.


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


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OfflineHedgeWych
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Re: Nothing Important Here.. Just a little something spiritual [Re: Swami]
    #4256226 - 06/04/05 04:26 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

It seem's to only be V's 'fault' in that she trusted S to be able to pay the bills when he said he would.

I know I have roommates because I can't afford to pay everything on my own. Isn't that kinda the point to having a roommate?

on the other hand, I understand S. I bury myself avoiding the 'crap' of reality. And then it creeps up. And I have to deal with it. It's not no one's fault because I was raised underprivilidged. It's my fault for being a dumb ass!


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