[Buddha-l] Oops--Article is from NY Times

R B Basham bshmr at aol.com
Sun Aug 22 21:49:29 MDT 2010

As here, both the fifth and third precepts are in focus at tricycle.com.
The NYT piece is linked to plus earlier commentary and 'intoxication' is
one theme for their Fall issue. 

Regarding these western buddhist scandals, one of my more permanent
aspects of self's early reactions was "it is zen, that crazy-making
often abusive and abused authoritarian manure pit. expect such, where
the precepts are superceded by accession to vanity -- or something like
that". Then, more fear-mongering coupled with dependence and obedience
training ... perpetuating mindless, dysfunctioning herds. 

Of course, a related problem is that 'right speech' is difficult.
Especially given TNH's and others' re-construction, the fourth precept
in practice is too often merely enabling silence or idled gossip. 

Or as viewed by too many, the delusion that a pervert's behavior is lost
and thus excused when abstracted into that of an imaginary being of
their group/institution, that is, 'church', 'nation', 'sangha',
'family', etc. 

A 'rich' tangle of issues, laced with frustrations, suggesting we miss
or at best imperfectly understand Gotama's insights.

Richard Basham

More information about the buddha-l mailing list