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Passions in Poetry

The Nutshell

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Huan Yi
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since 10-12-2004
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Waukegan


0 posted 07-17-2005 12:49 AM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


Buddha taught that suffering was caused by desire
and to end desire was to end suffering. Schopenhaurer
said it in another way: that unhappiness was caused
by the insatiable will seeking the ineffable goal, (or gratification).
Epictetus, a crippled Roman slave, taught that happiness
was a function of one’s way of looking at things.  Solzhenitsyn
said as much in Cancer Ward, ( as did Shakespeare in Hamlet).

Yet, how many, (even here),
define themselves to themselves and others
by their “pain”, ( a pain having nothing to do
with physical conditions, want of food, shelter,
or bad company)?  Don’t we often take even
contentment to be a sign of innocence or idiocy?

So, if there was had everything to be had,
wouldn’t there still be unhappiness out of necessity?

Chekhov in one of his stories relates a Russian
saying:  “When a peasant woman has no troubles
she will buy a pig.”

Midnitesun
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Gaia


1 posted 07-17-2005 11:17 AM       View Profile for Midnitesun   Email Midnitesun   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Midnitesun

My oldest sister has many, many pigs. It suits her mind-set, her bi-polarism well, to live a crisis-oriented-existence.
I personally enjoy/seek days when crisis stays off my doorstep. Sometimes I present poetry generated from pain, other times, from sheer contentment. The POV changes frequently, depending upon the moment.
Does this make me 'bi-polar' too? unstable?  imbalanced? confused? LOL.
Since the individual's reaction to both external and internal stimuli determine happiness/unhappiness, each of these approaches is valid and correct.
Juju
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since 12-29-2003
Posts 3353
In your dreams


2 posted 07-17-2005 12:09 PM       View Profile for Juju   Email Juju   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Juju's Home Page   View IP for Juju

We chose to be happy or not. To take the blue pill or the other.

Juju - 1.) a magic charm or fetish 2.)Magic 3.)A taboo connected woth the use of magic

The dictionary never lies.... I am magical (;

Local Rebel
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since 12-21-1999
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Southern Abstentia


3 posted 07-17-2005 02:05 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

It is paramount a person be happy in circumstances that are appropriate and sufficiently unhappy during times of loss and reversal.  

One shouldn't confuse happiness with adjustment.
Stephanos
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4 posted 07-17-2005 02:18 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Buddhism equates life with suffering.  Therefore, according to Gautama, the way to end suffering is to do away with desire.  Want nothing, and there will be no disappointments, heartbreak, strife, etc ...  But is such a thing even possible with humanity?  Most people recognize that there are good and right desires, as well as perverted desires.  Some to be kept and fostered, others to be shunned or corrected.    


The difference between Christianity and Buddhism, is that Christianity says the problem is sin, while Buddhism says the problem is ALL desire.  But by limiting and defining the problem in terms of sin (that which twists or distorts a good thing), it allows us to keep and love much that we instinctively know is worthy to be kept and loved.  The Christian view may be said to be too critical, but it is at least redemptive.  True Buddhism is not merely critical, it is fatalistic.  It counts (as do other forms of Eastern Relgion) that life and individual existence itself is illusory, and that dissolution into the cosmic "ALL" is the desired end.    
Ron
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5 posted 07-17-2005 06:52 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Stephen, I think your comparison is necessarily flawed because the goals of Buddhism and Christianity are very, very different. The elimination of desire is said to lead to the elimination of suffering, however the elimination of sin does NOT eliminate suffering, at least not in this life. Even the saints, indeed, even Christ, had to face heartbreaks.

I do agree with both LR and you that the elimination of desire is, well, undesirable (and therefore paradoxical). Personally, I've always held that it is expectation, not desire, that breeds sorrow.

Local Rebel
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Southern Abstentia


6 posted 07-18-2005 01:30 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

wrote a poem about this not too long ago
http://piptalk.com/pip/Forum92/HTML/000789.html
Huan Yi
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since 10-12-2004
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Waukegan


7 posted 07-18-2005 02:58 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


“But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. “

James 1:14-15
LeeJ
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since 06-19-2003
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SE PA


8 posted 07-21-2005 07:06 AM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

What sin brings forth, or should bring forth is guilt...not to mention, a great stagnation within our growth...meaning, deep inside, we know we've done wrong, but on the outside, refuse to see it and blame everyone else for our lives, when in fact, it was through our very own choices that we are in the mode we are...we know when desire forces us to act out...and we are indeed as little children, wanting what we want, when we want it, with no thought of whom we might hurt or effect...but the rude awakening is...and what people refuse to see and beleive, harsh words can kill and surpress a person...condiscention is just as strong of a gun, as the gun itself...and the horrible thing is, when we submit ourselves to the unclean, no matter how trivial, it will eventually surface inside of us somehow, even in misdirected anger...but we end up hurting ourselves more by desire of wanting to be right and refusing to say, Man oh man I did wrong by someone.

Instead of always looking at others and blaming them, or to even not allow them their opinion...is wrong...and can do great harm.  Basically, each individual is on a path, some further along then others....due to life conditioning, parents, teachers, cleargymen and all other influences during the course of our growth...

we must not mock people for their beliefs, or become angry, or call them stupid b/c we disagree, much more so, we must help them along when need be...and most of all, no matter our education, or how well we mince words, or what article we bring forth to prove our opinions are right, no one but no one knows the real truth until we take our last breath, as no one has died and come back to tell us what is...except Jesus himself...and the dangerous part about being humans is...we all believe our beliefs and religious/political convictions are the absolute truth...and they are not...we all intrupt things differently, by how we were conditioned and brought up, by the way we think.  If we only see the negative, then that's what we to will be and act out.  

but what we do know is, when we reach out for desire, if it hurts anyone else...then we ourselves will be hurt...and we stagnate not only the growth of others, but ours as well.  

We can tell ourselves over and over again...we did what was right, but do we ever really?  If we desire goodness for others, and do right by others, before ourselves, before our wants, lusts, etc. We then compliment our lives.  

Honestly, what concept I cannot understand, is the desire of sexual satisfaction regardless of the costs to others, of whom we may use, in the name of love, then break up with them, justifying our actions by saying, oh, she/he was a bad person, or didn't love me the way I expected them to...and we go forward to the next and the next...hurting so so many people along the way...and maybe scaring them for live...love I thing has become an excuse for making love...b/c love is not only good times...or being able to function in bed, or being a good lover...we're crazed with sex and it becomes our way of believing we are successful, powerful but when the newness is over, and it comes time to really meet the person we've been so intimate with, we can't seem to understand, that we didn't know them, and yet we shared with them one of the only true gifts we have to give to each other...a holy union?  Now we need to excuse our reasons for leaving them...leaving our children, and adding insult to injury, playing tug of war with the children...b/c we didn't really love that person...????  Now comes the bitter battle in court...hurting each other more, not to mention, families and friends, expecting them to take sides, expecting the children to understand???????
And that is just one small example.....

and what about our children, how do we do by them...do we identify our faults and try to break the chains of conditioning...we are not always right...and we know it, but do we allow them their time, or try to force our opinions on them...making them co-dependent on us...b/c we fear being alone and letting them go?  

And I set forth this concept in our everyday lives...with co-workers, political views and yes even religion...and yet, if someone does not think like us, instead of being patient, and listening, we become huffed up with insult and our feelings are hurt, so we tell them, they're crazy for feeling the way they do, and outcast them.  That is not living our lives to the fullest potential...and until we drop the lust to suceed financially, and instead doing right by others, without any price tag hanging over their heads...then we will again and again proceed to stagnate our own lives...which causes misery, guilt, confusion...not to mention, disguises all the goodness that is really out there.  We dwell way to much on the bad, until it grasps our entire being....desire can be a good thing...but we must desire success for everyone else...and in doing so, we will in turn succeed ourselves...and only then, will we grow together as a much more peaceful society.  People are actually more afraid to say no...to themselves and to others...b/c we want to belong...and I ask, belong to what?  

Politically, we are so huffed up with our parties, that we fear saying, they did wrong!  We actually make excuses for unacceptable, corrupt and illegal actions...simply b/c we are afraid to say, he, this guy really did wrong.  Instead we find ways to excuse his actions, b/c he represented us...that is desire to exceed at all cost, compromising who we are, and what we know is wrong. And we will collect every news media article that is written to defend that person's actions...when your government is corrupt, so to will be society.  

Why we even defend men of the cloth for sexual abuse, instead of standing up and saying, enough is enough...we will not go back to church until this mess is cleaned up and the guilty parties have been punished.  Forget about the child, and make excuses for the grown man who should have known better?

No two people will ever agree, but if we could only savor commmunication, digest it, together, we might find a much more appropriate solution....self imposed people we've become, blaming everyone else for our failures...when in fact, from failure comes some of the greatest successes, if we'd only sit down in quality quiet time and self examine...and place more emphasis on the hearts of others in allowance.

There are many desires...which lead to sin...and the ripple effect of that is and will always be, detromental to society...to us...fear of admitting we're wrong, and the lust for material fulfillment...deeming that and only that to be our proof of success...when in fact, happiness is success...in the mundane...humble efforts that focus on others, which in turn, will complement us...by, allowance, patience, personal responsibility, understanding, gives us peace within...sin...cultivates guilt and misdirected anger, which is meant for ourselves...and we will surely suffer from our lusts and desires, if we only think about our own personal gain, instead of how it will effect everyone else around us, therefore, society is effected...we stagnate growth..education, moral ability...

And here's a good one...ban all guns b/c so many people are being killed by them?  Instead of saying enough is enough, you murder someone, you go to prision for life, this is unacceptable behavior!  So we blame the guns...if someone is a murder, they will find a way without the guns...they are the menace to society....and have nothing to offer a working community but taking the lives of good people?  Yet we so desire to excuse they're actions?

I think, we desire to succeed in all the wrong ways, and we haven't learned a lot from history...killing people in the name of our belief, or financial or spiritual beliefs, is not the way...you can't force your beliefs down someone elses throat...or uncondition years and years of conditioning.

Thank you for the opportunity to participate in this thread and adding my mear thoughts on the subject...I may surely be wrong?

[This message has been edited by LeeJ (07-21-2005 07:49 AM).]

Stephanos
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9 posted 07-23-2005 10:19 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ron:  
quote:
Stephen, I think your comparison is necessarily flawed because the goals of Buddhism and Christianity are very, very different. The elimination of desire is said to lead to the elimination of suffering, however the elimination of sin does NOT eliminate suffering, at least not in this life. Even the saints, indeed, even Christ, had to face heartbreaks.


The reason I think the comparison should be made, is that both Buddhism and Christianity offer ultimate solutions.  They really do describe the same problem.  But one is a better description, because it is a fuller description.  The Buddhist says that the problem is suffering.  Christianity also recognizes that suffering is a great problem ... but affirms that it is caused by innate rebellion and original sin.  Thus Christianity does not try to eliminate suffering at all costs (it even recognizes that some suffering is necessary for the solution), but aims at the root cause.  Smoke is bad, fire is worse.  


Buddhism too closely associates life itself with suffering, to the point that they are indistinquishable.  So the primary characteristic of existence and life (desire) gets attacked as the cause of all ills.  But why isn't the desire to transcend suffering suspect also?  Why is the desire to annihilate the ego put in a different category?  Why does the desire for enlightenment not prevent and undermine the very thing it seeks?


Christianity, by not equating suffering with life, but rather with something that has overridden and usurped the virtues of life, finds that the desired goal isn't utter destruction but restoration ... even if that restoration is through a dying process.  The thing discarded is not so much bad, as it is spoiled.  The discarding is only done in view of something new that doesn't depart so radically from the old.  Is it vastly different and better?  Sure, but it is remarkably the same too.  It doesn't trash what we've truly loved, nor rebuke our tendency to love.  Instead it makes a distinction between love and infatuation ... between a bridegroom and a huckster.  


Chesterton once asked, and observed:

"...How can we contrive to be at once astonished at the world and yet at home in it?  How can this queer cosmic town with its many legged citizens, with its monstrous and ancient lamps, how can this world give us at once the fascination of a strange town and the comfort and honor of being our own town?"


"... On this system (asserting Christianity) one could fight all the forces of existence without deserting the flag of existence. One could be at peace with the universe and yet be at war with the world."


"... I had found this hole in the world: the fact that one must somehow find a way of loving the world without trusting it; somehow one must love the world without being worldly"
(from, Orthodoxy- The Romance of Faith)


And while Chesterton applied this to the universe as a whole, I see that the same description fits the individual life also.    


Stephen.        
Stephanos
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10 posted 07-23-2005 10:45 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

John:
quote:
“But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. “

James 1:14-15

Reading that passage in isolation could make one think that James was (like Guatama) saying that desire itself was the problem.  But in Biblical context, it is obvious that James was referring only to certain kinds of desires which lead to sin.  


"Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart."  (Psalm 37:4)


Stephen.
Stephanos
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11 posted 07-23-2005 11:38 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ravi Zacharias wrote a book about an imaginary conversation between Jesus and Buddha.  Ravi is a Christian, but he is well studied in Eastern Religions.  It was a very provocative read.  
Amazon.com Link
Stephen.
Huan Yi
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12 posted 07-24-2005 06:23 AM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


“But in Biblical context, it is obvious that James was referring only to certain kinds of desires which lead to sin. “

There were, (perhaps would still be),  monasteries
where even a woman’s shadow on the threshold
was expressly forbidden.  


Stephanos
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13 posted 07-24-2005 08:41 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

legalism is a real problem, and shows up in various traditions.  But it is a distortion and caricature of the original teaching.  


Essorant
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14 posted 07-24-2005 11:18 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

I don't believe minsterlife is dictated in the bible.  But there were special rules made by God's men themselves, such, as the Rule of St.Benedict.   And there were and are still women-monks, known as nuns.  And I believe they have every bit of right to seclude themselves from men, if they so desire, as men have the right to seclude themselves from women.  
Essorant
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15 posted 07-31-2005 10:48 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Desire has a heavenly origin:


Desire < desiderare < de "down from" + sidus/sider- "constellation, star"
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