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Lecture 7

Religion and Sexuality - Lecture 7

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Department
Religion & Culture
Course
RE374
Professor
Brent Hagerman
Semester
Fall

Description
RE374 – Lecture 7  Buddhism and homosexuality o procreation leads to desire, leads to children, connection to the physical world o many religions steer sexual activity into procreation o sees any form of sex that does not lead to procreation as more positive o desire/procreation is the worst aspect of sex according to Buddha o male sex with ordinary man, pandaka man, woman  sex with woman is the most harmful, ordinary man least harmful o accepted in monasteries, people sometimes joined monasteries for the sake of meeting men o literature about male love was common o western world views brought a negative view of homosexuality to Japan and China  Buddhism 101 o celibacy is only applicable for the monastic, nuns and monks o Four Noble truths  1 - all life is suffering (dukkha)  everything is impermanent, suffering because of the loss  stems from our desires, our cravings  2- craving is the source of human suffering  goal is detachment from the material world o extinguish craving and suffering o liberation from suffering (Nirvana), leaving the cycle of Samsara  3 - suffering can be eliminated  4 - follow the eight-fold path  reincarnation upon death, life is suffering, but life never stops o Buddha starts off as a prince, become aesthetic and wanders, sits under bodhi tree to meditate  age 35 reaches enlightenment  outside the cycle of rebirth  Buddhist Views on Sex and Sexuality o sexuality is not inherently sinful  sex is not bad, natural part of humanity  recognizes that non-monastics will have sex o regulates sex: do not harm others o allowed to have sex, but have to accept the good and the bad that come with it  with desire comes pleasure which leads to attachment o expectation that you grow out of sexual fascination into spiritual maturity  goal is a lifetime of abstinence, but this could take lifetimes to achieve o monastic Buddhists  children and families are ties that bind you to secular world  sex can lead a monk or nun astray, can create attachment  not the act that is bad, but the desire, attachment and risk of procreation  progeny create a host of obligations that hamper progress on path to enlightenment  Buddha called his children Rahula - "impediment" 1 RE374 – Lecture 7  So Far o B
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