Venerable visiting members of the monastic Sangha,
Valued lay community, Upasaka, Upasika,
Dear visitors and Bodhisattas,
As it just this thought just came to my mind:
Would it be of interest to get answers from Monks and Nuns, for the community and its members of SE-Buddhism?
Would it be of interest, as a community or for individual people, to assist a rendering of such?
[Possibly in any language, translation could be provided by those willing to do a service.]
Please, in the case of Ven. monastic members, this question can also be seen in regard of you, Ven. Sir or Sister:
Would Ven. Sir, valued Sister be willing to give answer in this here suggested way?"
Please feel heartily invited to contact my personal in which ever way you would prefer. Also valued Upasakas and Upasikas are heartily invited to forward it to their community and monastic teacher.
Background and Details:
Atma aware of the divergence in the ways of asking and answering questions: between today's common or usual way, and the proper rendering, in regard of addressing monks and nun; and gave this problem long-time thoughts and it's not easy to solve.
While in countries where Buddhism is a common culture, there would be always such as lay priests who watch and assist lay people in addressing monks properly, so that both would not have problems or objectionable situations, however such a culture does not exist in modern world.
Since the problem is twofold, that means on one hand there are few trained lay people who would assist and explain, and many monks and nuns sadly adopt the common way to give lay people a flavor (which in return does not motivate lay people to assist); and abandon several of their rules by doing that. It's a matter hard to overcome, but still not giving up this issue, Atma continues to find solutions for maybe a possible step by step change.
Its also common that against the reality of effects of stinginess those colored ways of thinking is very dominant and so the thoughts of sadly both lay people and monastics are mostly in regard of how to maintain and nourish the own family, gains, status and the Dhamma. It's of course a matter of strong bhava-tanha (desire for being and becoming).
The grain of the world is strong and of course it would be naively to think that such could be changed in large. How ever, it could touch in any case those who have certain kammic grounding and Nissaya with each other and general (some say paramis or "foreordination" to such).
Having given the environment and members of the community here a lot of investigation, and must say that it is technical (members' motivation to participate, and the structure of the way it is done, aside of background purposes of the whole thing) one of the most proper renderings Atma has ever personal seen in a larger form, Atma thought to raise the question (thinking with regard of serial approaches that there is certain interest and especially a great willingness for improvement) if the main serving community here, or even particular members would be interested in rendering such a service and assistance for both (that means also Atma takes it in trust that such a question is wished and would request to conform it or please reject it!).
Of course there are certain objectives which should be considered and it should be in no way cause especially holders of places like this any harm or disadvantage in their original purpose (thinking of gain of traffic, members, status and what ever). On the other had the objectives in regard of Dhamma Vinaya should be not overstepped.
A short sketch of how it could be done:
To give it a good ground of estimation maybe here a short sketch of how it could be done here:
- People are informed that they could consciously raise the question (also) to the members of the Sangha.
- They would mark it of make that known within their question
- Either monastic or, even better, lay assistance would prepare the raised question properly (the use of the discussion section like used now would be totally great to figure out certain necessary adjustments) and then forward it (either registered or unregistered) into the monastery by simply making a new thread
- The question will be received there generally or forwarded to particular monks and nuns who are willing to answer the question.
- Having prepared and answer, they would be able to post it either personally or let the deliver place it there.
- After that, the assistant of the community could either write a summary with a link of origination and/or post a simply a link to the answer, which would have been given in the Dhammatalks [dhamma desanā] forum public.
- If further questions arise, it could either be improved in the same way or simply be worked out by raising a new question here on SE and following the same way.
Maybe useful renderings in regard of usual of discussions on the answers:
- It would be good to keep it open for simply acknowledgements (like Sadhu or thanks.
- It maybe good, since SE does not have much wish to discuss much and maintain the discussion, to start such in a particular form on sangham if such arises, with just a link from SE to that discussion.
It could be made either in the existing forum but it would be also possible to maintain a special forum within there, for particular communities of questions with certain moderation and administration possibilities and/or the community would get an own community account ("SE-Buddhism" for example, which would be hold by certain moderators here). Of course also particular individual persons are always invited to take on such a task, which could be also independent of certain community agreements and purposes. To get the needed assistance and possibilities on sangham.net, which actually would not have much limits should be no problem.
The benefits of such:
For this particular community and its members:
- Increasing quality answers form the best possible source
- No special change of TOS or general usual are needed
- Getting more in contact with the Sangha
- Does not fear the weakening and disadvantage for certain of its own purposes, such as losing being frequented or losing members.
- Not so great danger of getting answers which are giving possibilities to be corrupted.
- Since naturally the presence and sayings of members of the Sangha have certain authority and but also indirect pressure, such would not disturb communities of lay people and such with with merely worldly purposes and put no unpleasant pressures on them. Keep them go their ways.
- No need to learn much about the function of other systems while benefiting also form other communities
- No skipping of the own community and know system needed and so no additional time spend if not wanted.
- Most objective and serious answers because of their community independent rendering and no possible deals and favors with it.
For the Sangha, particular monks and nuns:
- No compromises in regard of their rules are required
- No need of danger to participate in a maybe improper way on certain lay community (no danger of corruption)
- A permanent internet presence and involvement would be not necessary, and there would be no requirement to put too much time of maintaining one's door and existence into the world of internet.
- Possible tuning and certain etiquette within the Sangha could be rendered without troubling other and confuse faith in certain ways (sangham.net has certain areas for Bhikkhus and Bhikkhunis, which are off of publicity and not full ordinate members to carry out possible issues)
- Certain support to be not in the danger of misinterpretation of the Buddha and his Dhamma
- The reputation of the Sangha and particular members
- No struggle with technology, availability, presents, maintaining and so more or same independency as before
- Most possible care by lay people and monastic attendants
- No worldly involvement and participation necessary
- Email account and other access, if necessary can be provided by sangham.net as Dana in the frame of its given possibilities. As told, it's not an easy and usual way since many things go against the grain, and there are of course reasons and forces who do not like to have such ways, and the reasons can all be found in the Saṅghabhedaka Sutta, which holds of course for both parts of the Buddhas fourfold community which is actually interdependent. That means both parts are able to change to a better is one part has fallen into wrong ways and that such appears depends on the tendency of both.
Which art least brings Atma to the last point, to the benefit of the particular assistant:
Simply measureless possibilities of practice on field and for sure a sublime field of merits in the way of:
- Rendering assistance (Veyyāvaca)
- Sharing the Dhamma (Iti 100), and
- Uniting the Sangha and preventing the real Dhamma (which leads to heaven in any case).
Note: Of course it would be also good (and even perfect), even maybe not seen as necessary, to get certain acknowledgement also from the owner and holder of this environment personally (although one could just justify it by interpreting already given regulations) since such is the more proper way and one feels much more light and free knowing that things are really given without any even subtle doubt that one would cause somebody things he/she does not like to give.
Since Atma never make something strategical or tactical such as to prepare things in the background out of the range of publicity and in secret arrangements, a certain topic on Sangham has be opened as well: (Question and anwer pipeline between monastic and lay communities on internet). That has of course its disadvantage, since it is totally open to being opposed it by those who have "reason" to oppose it. How ever, it's never a battle, but possible for others to change ways to a good, and totally given to the actions of each individual including the effects for them. So in no way, even if it would be strategical wiser for a purpose, does Atma fall into the use of means, people with "reasons" are used to use. Just to let you know that this offering does not carry any dependency which could give ways to corrupt the Dhamma and totally depends on personal actions and will to give and skillful actions, one after the other.
If certain additional questions arise, please do not hesitate to ask where ever you feel that it is proper and good. If any renderings would be necessary or certain doubts or demur arises, do not fear any disadvantage when expressing such and be most critical, open and give and assume susceptibly.
As told before, this question is addressed to the community as a whole and also to the individual visitors and members. As for the community views and considerations, answers are best placed here. As for individual aspirations and answers, they could be placed in the forum as well. Even Atma prefers publicity (out of protection for all), but one can of course also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if there are certain fears or reasons why not using this or that public place.
Please let your answer be known, what you would be able and willing to give to make it possible.
Possible proper Ways to render it
*As a community usual:*Community gains an owns a community account and passes questions directly into the Open-Vihara forum on sangham.net and also repost the link and maybe a summary here as soon as the answer appears in the Dhammatalk-Forum (notification would be through automatically email by mentioning the account-user). "Venerable Members of the monastic Sangha. The community of SE has been confronted with this and that question. It would be good it the Ven. Members of the Sangha have the compassion to answer this question so that possible doubt and uncleanly could be erased..."
Individual user asks on behave of the community: (either as guest or taking a given account on sangham) same process but ways of notification would be useful when posting as guest. "Venerable Members of the monastic Sangha. In our community was asked this question... It would be good it the Ven. Members of the Sangha have the compassion to answer this question so that possible doubt and uncleanly could be erased..." (as a sample)
*As a Individual person having seen a question here on SE and willing to seek an answer by him self so that he/she could even share it here later. Same process, either as guest or having taken a given account on sangham. "Venerable Members of the monastic Sangha. Here an there I have seen this and that question and discussion. It would be good it the Ven. Members of the Sangha have the compassion to answer this question so that possible doubt and uncleanly could be erased..." (as a sample)
Possible alternative ways which need to have certain
The community invites to take on particular marked questions by monks, nuns or in this case maybe sangham.net to forward and answer it. The notification might be problematic. Also a certain agreement with the owner of this page seems to be necessary. It also would require some own effort by the answer or those who manage it outside of your community here and is maybe not so good served since it does not show so much effort by the questioner.
Personally Inviting Monks or Nuns (best maybe Samaneras) to take on the delivering which would need certain exceptions of particular TOS here and also an invitation of the holder and owner of this site. It also is very dependent on the effort and discrimination of the person who acts and also shows more limited effort. Much involvement technical and others is needed by members of the Sangha.
Usual improper ways
- Monks or nuns taking an account on trust (which knowingly or unknowingly) and act as they wish like lay people do in this or takt community which would go moslty against "taking what is not given" or "taking from the forest like villager do" or is open to critic as such; is mostly on unspoken agreements which are even against the TOS of the owner and does not bring much shine the reputation of the Sangha. Furthermore its not clear if the questioner even wishes such and if there are certain interests of socialization between members such a kind of going in between with an answer would be like disturbing husband and wife in there house which is also not proper and also a fault.
Informations about sangham.net:
The place was given more then three years ago by a certain lay person as a gift for the Sangha and has started its development when Atma was still a "anagarika" or wanderer with the purpose to make the internet accessible for monks and nuns who like to stick to Vinaya seriously and give them also a place to come together and use it as a social place in community issues. At this time Atma had no thought of ever joining the Sangha himself. It also is though to be a place of practice all 10 meritious deeds for lay people and make merits but not thought as a simply social platform where socializing is the main focus. Its also meant to make Sangha accessible for people who live outside of areas where Dhamma is practiced and borderlands.
Now Atma looks after it in behavior of the Sangha of the four direction but needs to be seen as simply a kind of monastic house keeper. The environment is placed on an Eco-server in Germany and the worldly ownership of it as well as the financial support to maintain this place is given by particular laypeople and those things are totally out of the range of the monastics. So generally there is no and never such as money or fundraising involved and hardly avoided. The rendering of its possibilities allow a use in according to the Vinaya if there is certain support on the side of the interface possibility of the individual monks and nuns, also the structure of the forum is generally laid out so that it can function like a real monastery. The Sangham - Dhamma Vinaya monastery is not associated with any particular school or tradition aside of the Buddhas Sangha of the four directions and its objectives are to stick in what ever possible way to Dhamma and Vinaya. There is also no such as censure or background systems. Even there are parts of the forum which are not open for everyone in advance, everything is actually transparent. Of course certain needed intimacy for ever particular group is maintained. Some Objectives can be seen here. The place, since it is a working and concentration place is a everlasting building side and not a static "it must be like that, that is it", so open for all generosity in improvement for everyone in his responsibility and inspiration. It's also not meant as a 'here and no where-else place', and is also done to give others certain ideas of how things can be made, so no exclusivity and like all things since the Buddha free to adopt and copy them if wholesome things are seen.
The possibilities are far more as now visible and nearly without limitations.
You should also know that sangham.net, or better Atma is not most beloved broadly since there is no such as censuring or taking part on this or that side and also speaks and discusses issues which are not beloved and go against the common grain.
Atma like to add that the general and long time function of sangham.net and this ways depends on the willingness of a participation of members of the Sangha directly and also on certain support of lay people on sangham.net. Atma is usually walking, does not hold anything aside of the most necessary, not to speak about fix support, money, telephon... and keep most of the dudongas and it is merely "accidentally" that he has possibility to serve, what he does of course with joy and the mind set to the long lasting and benefit of the Sangha but not missing the nimitta and aspiration on Nibbana on this way. So Atma has to be seen as a part time entertainer till some sparks will light a useful fire. So sangham.net is Sangha property and not that of any more or lesser abbot or linage and the Sangha of the four directions has all rights to act, in line with Dhamma and Vinaya.
[Note in regard of the post here: Since Atma has not possibility to give it direct to a particular moderator to handle the given possibility with it as he wishes or to post in "meta", Atma putted it here. Although it could be good hold as a normal question, there should be no problem to bring it into the meta area. Sorry for eventual caused burdens and trouble with it anyway]