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Should personal opinions contrary to doctrine (held by any school) or the Tripitaka (Pali, Sanskrit or Tibetan) need qualification as this is a personal view and not what the Buddha preached? A casual reader may be mislead from these type of answers.

One way would be to add an answer but again a reader would be confused as to which is true doctrinal position. What are the ways to address this so this site does not become a vehicle to propagate false views but as vehicle to propagate the right view.

I am not saying personal opinion is not OK but there needs to some separation saying so and so is my personal opinion and this is not especially if the personal opinion flows against something directly in the Tripitaka.

Also how does other sites deal with non doctrinal opinions or content not based on a doctrinal underpinning?

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How to deal with personal opinions

Some suggestions include:

  • Post a better answer.

    In this case, "better" might mean "with references" ... and it would be up the reader (not just the OP but every reader and voter) to decide how much weight they give to a referenced answer, compared to the unreferenced answer.

  • Vote down.

    I recommend (in order to avoid any mere sectarian bickering) that you don't do this, if the answer is clearly from a school of Buddhism whose doctrine you don't understand or agree with.

    I recommend you prefer to vote down, instead of arguing, if there's probably nothing you could say which would persuade the poster to change/improve their answer (and you might have an opinion about that based on the way in which that person has reacted to previous comments of yours) then it's better to just downvote and move on -- that's what voting is for, it's why voting exists:

    Voting up a question or answer signals to the rest of the community that a post is interesting, well-researched, and useful, while voting down a post signals the opposite: that the post contains wrong information, is poorly researched, or fails to communicate information. The more that people vote on a post, the more certain future visitors can be of the quality of information contained within that post – not to mention that upvotes are a great way to thank the author of a good post for the time and effort put into writing it!

  • Post a comment to ask for a clarification.

    I recommend you don't use comments for arguments, nor for discussions which cannot eventually result in any improvements to the answer; therefore avoid comments like the following:

    • This answer is wrong.
    • Where did you get this stupid idea from?

It hasn't been policy to say that every answer must clarify whether it's opinion or reference.

  • When a question is explicitly referenced, that reference is usually obvious.

  • When a question is implicitly based on a reference (e.g. if someone mentions "the four noble truths" without referencing a sutta), do you worry that someone might be confused about whether that's doctrine or opinion?

    In a case like that I think it's usually fine to post a comment like, "Thanks for your answer. Can you give a reference to where I can read more about 'X' which you mentioned in your answer?"


If it's one of my answers and you see a problem with it, then please tell me: I want to know if an answer of mine is wrong or unhelpful, how it can be improved, whether it's better deleted.

I can't say that everyone else will welcome your criticism on their answers. In fact if anyone posts a comment to one of your answers, and you don't like that comment, then instead of answering it or leaving it unanswered you may flag it as "not constructive" or something, for a moderator to delete.

Also how does other sites deal with non doctrinal opinions or content not based on a doctrinal underpinning?

I suspect that other SE sites don't allow opinion (they might say, "all answers must be referenced"); or they only allow theoretical, not practical/pastoral questions (because often everyone agrees on theory but the difference in "opinion" is in how to apply the theory to specific practical questions); or they only allow practical not theoretical questions (e.g. if the question is how to solve some software problem, then I could try all the answers, to 'see for myself', which answers actually 'work' in practice).


One ideal or theory is that all answers should be either referenced or based on personal experience (not just personal opinion).

If an answer is just opinion then perhaps the question is at least partly to be blamed. For example a good question might ask for a reference, or ask something which requires some experience or expertise (not just an opinion) to answer. I can think of lots of questions which I wouldn't ask because I think I'd just get a lot of opinions in reply. Site policy is to permit most types of question, however.

My main concern is when is Buddha has said x somebody saying Buddha said not x.

If your concern is someone saying something specific such as, "the Buddha has said X", then you might post a question as a comment to ask for clarification, for example a comment/question like,

Would you add a reference for saying that the Buddha said X? In reference Y, the Buddha said Z.

Referencing can solve this but how much referencing can you enforce.

I think I can't enforce any referencing at all.

A few people seem quite averse to moderators trying to "enforce" a policy.

The upvoted/accepted answer (and other answers) to the meta-topic, What about providing sources? defined a policy of references not being generally required/enforceable.

You could try for a change in that policy (suggest a new policy, and see whether your new proposal has consensus from a broad majority of the current site community), but IMO that's not a current policy which moderators can enforce.

Hypothetically we could have a policy which allowed people to challenge answers ("Your answer seems wrong, to me: so you must either add references to justify it, or your answer will be deleted") but that's certainly not current policy, and perhaps wouldn't be popular and/or beneficial. It might be difficult to apply to all questions, too, so either it would have to be defined as applicable to some questions but not others, or it might limit the range/type of question that could be asked.

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A more technical answer, given you are clear about your aims and that it is to do not slander the Dhamma as much as possible to cause not a lot of damage, suffering and misfortune for many and accumulate a mass of demerits for your self:

The Buddha gave simply advice how to handle "opinions" or better statements in the Maha-parinibbana Sutta. The main point is 1. neither reject nor approve, 2. to prove if it fits to Dhamma and Vinaya. If not simply say it straight and let others known, if it fits, simply say it (and expression like Sadhu, is usual) Votes are not reliable, since people believe that such has no effects on them and so they are not clear about the backwards of approving something that should be rejected and vici versa.

People would also have the change to look of who approved. When they follow his ways of thinking in other questions, they would have possibility to look of how much understanding he/she has.

To have more reliable commentators and teacher, you have to change your general approaches and environmental circumstance. Its not possible to stay without corruption if you need to adopt corrupt means to be even possible to participate. And if you do not even the ways for such, it will be not likely that such people would come and put effort into. That means you have to watch out your duties in regard of that what is to be seen as leading.

So its very important to know the more exalted and seek for it rather to provide an environment that likes rejects more exalted, seek for equal and inferior. That is like old people seek for young peoples association, or children not interested to seek association with elders. No property can be expected for them.

And a person who have nissaya, is a person that seeks for it and not one who thinks "it will be up to my kamma, that my teacher will come".

You can not learn and understand Dhamma Vinaya, without also taking or getting know there practical ways and that what most people think that it is the child stuff, practices and habits.

One has responsibilities and actions have their effects.

Look out for those "fake Buddha quote" people: “On the long journey of human life, faith is the best of companions; it is the best refreshment on the journey; and it is the greatest property.” or “If we fail to look after others when they need help, who will look after us?”. He got rebuked for his approaches, all he did was delete nearly all rebukes and advises.

Such is a matter of corruption, and when people making Dhamma their livelihood, more or lesser (to have a sense of well-being in community is also for a livelihood on a finer level), it can be nothing but corrupt and to give people the notion "Come and with me and let us dance on Dhamma" meaning to use the sense of identification as reason to join, that is the reason why most Buddhist communities are not different to either stone age communist regimes or materialistic liberal gain orientated government.

There are plenty of communities who feel even annoyed if citing the Buddha in a Buddha-citing tradition, fearing to face something more exalted and there are communities who like to make the quotes of the Buddha a means of trade and daily use items.

Seek for adviser and and there where they can be found, since 2500 years and that is neither google, nor found in laity ways of more or lesser trade.

When you pull the tradition into your ways and success, since there are people who are not that strong, you might think you had win something, but actually you just lost in two ways, for your self, now the good has been lost in the mud, even if not graspable its no more seen, and the object it self is no more clean. So what are the benefits of thinking that pour a cup clean water into a muddy lake, thinking that its pure it will help? To have more muddy opinions, never cleaned and remarked as this is simply muddy and to celebrate muddy water increase?

[Sutta] AN01.98-139. You are welcome to make some merits and rejoice by rendering service. There is a lot of you can gain be letting go and give rather to demand.

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Aside of the possible incapacity of what is misleading and what is proper by those in charge here, and the fact, that even those in charge here would not react but simply stick with their opinions and views, even if you would do like suggested by Upasaka Chris one would get this form the Canon opposing side:

We've noticed that you have a pattern of engaging in lengthy discussions in comments, frequently consisting of responses involving multiple, back-to-back posts. ''Comments are intended as brief messages to provide feedback, add minor information, ask for clarification, or discuss the content of the post.'' Lengthy clarifications should be edited into the post itself or posted separately as a new question or answer, and extended discussions should be taken to chat. Extensive comment threads tend to be a distraction for other readers. These lengthy discussions are often hard to follow, and can easily hide critical information.

Preferring to argue with other users in comments over revising your questions and answers to address their concerns is a red flag to moderators, indicating you may not fully understand the purpose of Stack Exchange: our goal is to provide readers with expert questions and answers, not host discussion or debate. If you desire conversation, stop into the site's chat room.

We hope that you can work with the community on achieving our goals by:

Asking specific, researched, relevant, on-topic questions Providing clear, useful, accurate and well-researched information in answers Treating others with respect and civility

We have temporarily suspended your account; you may return after 7 days.

Regards, Sri Lanka Buddhism Stack Exchange moderator

Whether you believe it or not here are real problems and they begin with the honest answer of "What is your aim? What are you loyal to?" If that is not primarily the Tripple Gems but simply use them as a means of livelihood and entertainment, or what ever one feel comfortable by using them, then once again, you do neither something good for your self nor for others.

This community objectives contradict the Dhamma objectives in that way as it is about gaining, amassing, having a benefit form it, and putting welfare and joy above Dhamma and truth.

Atma fears that your as a hole can not be helped in anyway and since you don't start to make meritorious deeds in faith such as giving, serving, silas..., there is less chance that there is at least the questions real formulation "''How to deal with an answer in contrary with my opinion''", and to fix that is pointless since power holder will find ways to arrange them so that each of them gets enough food and share of the hunts.

There is really, and that have been checked in all ways and with all possibilities, no need for anybody have faith in the Three Gems a need to come back and one simply would waste his merits when engaging with peoples of wrong view.

Also this is not written to attack you or harm you, but to make you clear where you are, if you like to know it and try to walk a better. The deeds are up to you and those who think you need to feed together.

"Dhammo have rakkhati dammacāriṁ"

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I think it should be clearly stated when personal views are being expressed, e.g. by writing "in my opinion..." or "I understand it as..." or maybe in some other way.

Most important thing would be to clarify when expressions are personal and non-doctrinal, i.e. what the Buddha didnt teach.

Good question, I'm looking forward to see others opinions on this.

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Looking through the last 10 15 questions and answers here, Atma did not wonder to see such question arising. No possibility to answer your question in regard of what "you" should do, since it is not clear of what is "your" actually purpose here. But if asked about how to react on wrong view and its out-coming, you may find some answers here: https://buddhism.stackexchange.com/a/13788/7500 (extended version still terrible English)

How ever, its difficult to "dance on two church jamborees". On one hand, every opinion is fine - postmodernism and when this artificial liberty, which actually is used to attract as much as possible customers, starts to feed of everything of the dealer, the dealer starts sweating.

Just having seen that a moderator writs "thoughts" are in no way kamma... here you have the prove, or did you think that you do not mostly answer with a lot of opinions and judge even so like that.

That the world people rejecting authority and what is before and behind, are living in. And then they fight each other with this and that stand and view.

Its how every clear, that you produce here a lot of demerits in large and it has how ever a reason why to are still gifted to get some useful rebukes.

The foremost investor of this "problem" maybe starts to think, but its more seemly that one will find a prove that all of that are later adoptions, and all the basics are not necessary.

Not sure if Upasaka Suminda Sirinath S. Dharmasena got the link, as he suggested such, a collection in regard of refuge.

"Why, does he write us this?", well the kamma of could be of many kind. Maybe try to focus more on your thoughts when you have the change to be given.

And of course, you can still walk the way of the pseudo-liberals and develop techniques and ways of justification of killing and stealing, banning and deleting, or lying, by modify things.

And that is why the discussions to the answers and questions are most important, yet most deleted... One is really not gifted when seeking for answers here. But that is like wiki and all "open sources" for a livelihood.

There is no such as "democracy" or "postmodern communism" possible on Buddhas path, for wise thought are as less as wise people. And what will they make later, when the wise disappeared in the times they thought they have been smart and could bend them or put them away?

"Also how does other sites deal with non doctrinal opinions or content not based on a doctrinal underpinning?" They call it safe place and think about how to give things names that its no more possible to discriminate them and what goes against the moderators or owners opinion, will be simply deleted and banned, so that it stays a safe place... Not sure if you can grasp the irony or get some sense of samvega facing the tail you have developed. If there is no way to escape that all would be placed to be experienced.

To say it in inspiration of a Venerables saying, thoughts creates your way of thinking, your ways of thinking your inclination, your inclination your habit, your habit your friends, your friends your community, your community your world. So its all about changing general ways of thinking. Peace is possible, step by step.

So where do you like to go, whats your aim?

  • Was what I wrote about karma wrong or misleading? – ChrisW Feb 19 '16 at 15:03
  • Defin itly. But that would not have happened, if those who normally thoughtless delete short answers, would have here accidentally also deleted... What do you THINK? Should we delete short answers, or disliked, or maybe those who could have thoughts behind? But since thought is not kamma, why should we think, and not just follow our moods. That's sarcastic formulated, but you will see, that it is 1 beneficial and second kusala. A matter of intention that leads to sankharas called thoughts. – user7500 Feb 19 '16 at 15:45
  • Your answer is fine to me. What @SamanaJohann is trying to say is the worse happened to some of his short answers. BTW, I am not the person who down voted. – Suminda Sirinath S. Dharmasena Feb 19 '16 at 17:41
  • There are just samples and there is no need to give them to much weight. The Buddhas medicine is to stock with the basics and the tool he had given, heedful. And its the value of being together with others the have the change to be corrected and this possibility should not get lost for other priorities like gain or what ever. Wrong is wrong and right is right and its about answers and not persons and reputation and quantity. What Atma is trying to say is that it is foolish to think one can walk alone, one can to it by one self. Seek for guides and advisors, some who have reached some idenpen. – user7500 Feb 19 '16 at 23:37
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Aside of the possible incapacity of what is misleading and what is proper by those in charge here, and the fact, that even those in charge here would not react but simply stick with their opinions and views, even if you would do like suggested by Upasaka Chris one would get this form the Canon opposing side:

We've noticed that you have a pattern of engaging in lengthy discussions in comments, frequently consisting of responses involving multiple, back-to-back posts. ''Comments are intended as brief messages to provide feedback, add minor information, ask for clarification, or discuss the content of the post.'' Lengthy clarifications should be edited into the post itself or posted separately as a new question or answer, and extended discussions should be taken to chat. Extensive comment threads tend to be a distraction for other readers. These lengthy discussions are often hard to follow, and can easily hide critical information.

Preferring to argue with other users in comments over revising your questions and answers to address their concerns is a red flag to moderators, indicating you may not fully understand the purpose of Stack Exchange: our goal is to provide readers with expert questions and answers, not host discussion or debate. If you desire conversation, stop into the site's chat room.

We hope that you can work with the community on achieving our goals by:

Asking specific, researched, relevant, on-topic questions Providing clear, useful, accurate and well-researched information in answers Treating others with respect and civility

We have temporarily suspended your account; you may return after 7 days.

Regards, Sri Lanka Buddhism Stack Exchange moderator

Whether you believe it or not here are real problems and they begin with the honest answer of "What is your aim? What are you loyal to?" If that is not primarily the Tripple Gems but simply use them as a means of livelihood and entertainment, or what ever one feel comfortable by using them, then once again, you do neither something good for your self nor for others.

This community objectives contradict the Dhamma objectives in that way as it is about gaining, amassing, having a benefit form it, and putting welfare and joy above Dhamma and truth.

Atma fears that your as a hole can not be helped in anyway and since you don't start to make meritorious deeds in faith such as giving, serving, silas..., there is less chance that there is at least the questions real formulation "How to deal with an answer in contrary with my opinion", and to fix that is pointless since power holder will find ways to arrange them so that each of them gets enough food and share of the hunts.

There is really, and that have been checked in all ways and with all possibilities, no need for anybody have faith in the Three Gems a need to come back and one simply would waste his merits when engaging with peoples of wrong view.

Also this is not written to attack you or harm you, but to make you clear where you are, if you like to know it and try to walk a better. The deeds are up to you and those who think you need to feed together.

The Kindergarden does really not end, since if people are caught into wrong doings and deny it, such as it is when people are deliberately lying, the no more do anything else as to fight all what might underline there delusion and wrongness...

How compatible are the beliefs of atheists and Buddhism?

Mr. James Jenkins, valued Readers,

There are less how really define of what Atheism is and there are less who understand Dhamma.

So if one asks: "Is believe and faith important for the Dhamma a clear?" "YES, most! 'Right faith' is the prerequisite of the whole practice of the Noble Eightfold Path."

And if ones asks: "Is it necessary to believe in deities and fine physical beings?" "YES, most! As it is as a part of right view, right faith and the prerequisite of the whole practice of the Noble Eightfold Path."

So if your or what ever Atheism does not have problem with such, it has maybe some similarity but as for -isms they are naturally just philosophies while Dhamma -Vinaya is a way of live, a way of practice and not to create a world justification by thinking.

Mr./Mrs MischievousSage also catches good points. If one is interested in liberation he would not find much food for that in such Beliefsystems like secular Buddhism, yet there believe is neither grounded by anyone, never was it heard that a secular teacher got liberation and Atma guesses that all will agree that their Guru Bachelor is even far away from entering the stream not to speak about having abounded a single fetter but increased.

People who have joined such sects are really poor, they have nothing as their believes to relay on, just that they maintain the idea to know instead of making a step forward, guided by a certain perception (belief)

(Note: this answer has not been given with the agreement to be means of trade or the purpose of/for trade and/or keep people trapped and bound. How you handle it lies in your sphere, but does not excuse the deed here either.) shareeditundeleteflag deleted by ChrisW♦ yesterday Why was your post deleted? See the help center.

answered Jan 14 at 8:08 Samana Johann

This is unreferenced opinion (i.e. it states no reason/explanation to justify the opinion), and ad hominem (being rude/insulting about other people and their teachers) ... so I'm deleting it. – ChrisW♦ **yesterday **

So its really a truth, moderators at lage are nothing different to prostitutes, as long as something comes it which they can make a use of it, they will look like sweet and so much supportive, but as soon as they say that they can not nourish on you, then they show their true nature.

How could at Atheism possible have beliefs and teachers. The fact is, that this is not a place of Buddhism, but another place of thiefs of the heritage of the tipple gems. Atma would not sleep well only thinking on the punsh of demerits people are making here.

Just look at the "Can Buddha be a woman" topic. There are simply and exclusively moderators who give opinion answers and oppose and slander the teaching, like most the Buddha, the Dhamma and the Sangha.

You should really develop a amount of shame since that would be your only protection.

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