Author Topic: Which would you pick?  (Read 10762 times)

Jessie Fong

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Which would you pick?
« on: July 02, 2012, 12:37:37 AM »
KING YAMA'S DECISION - a Buddhist folk story

One day, two hell residents (call them A and B respectively) were summoned before King Yama (the Lord of Hell in Buddhism).
"You two had finished serving your sentences here in Hell and are now eligible for parole and to be rebirth as human beings on earth," said King Yama. "But remember, if both of you follow the Buddha's teaching, to do all the good deeds and avoid doing the bad deeds, you do not have to come back here."
"Thank you for your instructions", replied both Hell Residents.
"Now, before you go, I have two life styles for you to choose from when you go back to earth." said King Yama. "The first one is a life style that someone will always give you money while you are on earth. The second one is a life style that you will always give away money through out you life. . Now, you are welcome to make you pick"
"Of course, I want to choose the first one", said resident A, thinking that it is a good choice, "I like people to give me money all the time."
"Well, since resident A had chosen the first life style, than I will choose the second one, that is, I will always give away money to someone else." said resident B.

"OK, I will arrange resident A to be born to a very poor family, and resident B to be born to a very rich family as a multi-billionaire right from birth. You both can go now."

"What!? Why do I have to born to a very poor family?" Resident A protested to King Yama. "And he will be born with a silver spoon in his month?"

Replied King Yama, "Sorry. You want someone to give you money all the time, and poor people on welfare are just that. He wants to give away money all his life, and the only possible way to do it is to be a rich multi-billionaire."


I chanced upon the above story and was wondering : If you were given the choice, which would you pick and why?

ratanasutra

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2012, 05:14:05 AM »
haha.. its not a trick question from the King yama but i think is a well thought question.

Quote
If you were given the choice, which would you pick and why?

i would pick to be born as the second one whom  life style will always give away money through out you life with 2 reasons.
1. In order to be able to give money out that mean i have money either from someone or i have to earn it myself, it doesn't matter how i can earn but i have karma to have it.
2. Giving is one of the six paramita which we should practice so it will be good for me to have a foundation of it so that it can spring up to develop other paramita. And to give other, we make other happy and indeed we also happy. Yes, i want to happy too.

Carpenter

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2012, 07:41:09 AM »
In Buddhism, being born in rich family doesn’t mean it is good, it could the manifestation of our negative karma. Because of money, it creates fights among family members, people get close to us because of the big bank behind me, and so on. Being born in rich family, we could have a chance not to meet Dharma, if we were to be brought up like how nowadays parent taking care of the kids, it has been pampered to the stage that the kids don’t know the real value of their life.

Being poor is also not necessary negative karma, it’s all depends on how you look at it, people who born in poor family will have to work hard to earn their living, in early age, they might need to come out to work and be independent, they been through hard time, so they value life more, when come to Dharma, they will be more accepting because they have been through it.

When our life is smooth, we can’t do Dharma, because there is no realization in a comfortable life.

If I were to choose, I will choose to be born in poor family but still able to give.



Jessie Fong

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2012, 08:05:46 AM »
Resident A showed his lazy attitude when he picked to be born in the lifestyle where he will always receive money.  He thought that it will be the easy way out - no need to work, no worry as to how the money will come, no worry about family, expenses - but he forgot that there is always a price to pay for something : for choosing that lifestyle, his "reward" was to be born in a poor money to live on welfare.

Resident B chose the 2nd lifestyle thinking that he will always be surrounded by money but in so doing, he did not foresee that to keep and maintain a large coiffure he would need to work extra hard. 

bambi

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2012, 08:15:13 AM »
I would've choose giving away money. For the logic would be, if I don't have then how will I give?

To be able to practice one of the six paramitas, the path of Boddhisattva, we are able to cut our ignorance and delusion which ultimately lead us to the path of liberation.

Giving, generosity, offering, charity when practiced free us from selfishness, attachment and expectations. We develop this paramita so that we give unconditionally and selfless. It doesn't matter who we give to for our wealth is impermanent. When I say wealth, it doesn't mean just material wealth. We can give Dharma, protection, time, energy, love, etc. especially to those who need it so that we may help them be happy.


Tammy

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2012, 08:15:37 AM »
Dear Jessie,

Thank you for the story. I like this very much. This will be the best story to share the true mening of 'giving' with people around us. To be able to GIVE, we have to have SOMETHING to give. On the other hand, those people who take are the people who has NOTHING.

Honestly, without the little dharma knowledge that I have, I would have chosen the same option as Resident A as I would want to 'comfortable' life of being able to take from others.

Thank you again very much for the sharing, more stories?? Looking forward.
Down with the BAN!!!

dsiluvu

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2012, 12:37:18 PM »
I honestly think it is all based on your MOTIVATION. And this is kinda determined by your own KARMA. If your motivation is selfish based... let's not even go so deem as to think about being helpful to others... but lets say by being rich, you will self-indulge even more and basically end up doing the wrong things, mix with the wrong crowd and losing all your wealth, then go in to depression and tons litigation - then what's the point really? Might as well be POOR & HAPPY & LOVING & GIVING which I have seen in many poor people actually. They seem to be so much more happier and generous. They have FREEDOM cos the got nothing to lose. While the rich always live in FEAR, fear of LOSING something, someone, any thing. Highly insecure.

However, I've also seen super rich and super generous people who are brilliant, caring and they make the world move and change. They do justice with their wealth and fame. They are a gem and one in a million. These are like people like probably AJEKA which u can see here http://www.dorjeshugden.com/forum/index.php?topic=1969.15

He is so well respected by the whole township because of his kind work and most importantly is his Guru Devotion which sets his motivation in doing everything and this one man built a monastery for his GURU! Wow! Admirable!!!

So yeah... I would say it is all about YOU really... what kind of person are you and your MOTIVATION.

If I had a choice... and I have DHARMA I would PICK to be RICH x

negra orquida

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2012, 06:16:39 PM »
If in either choices, I would be able to practice Dharma purely and sincerely, to be reborn as a "poor" person or a "rich" person is both ok.  A rich person who has the Dharma will be able help more people compared to someone who is rich but does not have Dharma.  Poor + Dharma also can work.  Look at the nuns and monks... they may not have much materially but they have so much spiritually.  They are able to give so much more than many of us and rich people.  In fact the thing they can give is much more valuable than money and property... the Dharma!

But if i wouldn't have the opportunity to meet and practice dharma in the next life... both options are equally crap! born into poor family = tendency to create causes for another poor rebirth.  born into rich family = using up merits / good karma, more attachments, will fall into lower realms anyway in the next life.

kurava

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2012, 04:31:08 AM »
"Richness" is relative. To me , if one can give readily without any expectation in return , one is rich.

I've seen multimillionaires that are so "poor"  that they can't bear to give one dollar without getting something in return either in recognition or in kinds.

We often think the opportunity to receive is definitely better than giving because we associate giving with losing something that belongs to us. In actual fact , nothing belongs to us.  Seeing the happiness of others through our giving is the real wealth that truly enriches our lives and bring contentment to us. It will not be easy for us to do right now but we can start by practicing this with our family and friends or by giving donations to organizations  that we relate to - take one baby step now to create the cause for the giant leap in the future.

vajrastorm

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2012, 10:17:00 AM »
I agree with NO and Dsilivu, that the Dharma is the best Wealth to have. With Dharma, will come the belief in Karma.

With that, if I choose the lifestyle that allows me to always give money, I will create the causes to give, by earning the money to give, for instance(if I'm not born with wealth).Even if I were born with wealth, my Dharma will teach me to realize that this wealth is only temporary wealth and will all disappear when the causes and conditions arise for it to do so.Also, the wealth is a loan, as is every thing we possess in this life(except for the Dharma in us). At death, we lose all. So why not give unconditionally and cultivate the virtue of Giving with love and compassion, one of the Six Perfections, and put ourselves firmly on the Bodhisattva Path to Full Liberation and Enlightenment?

The Dharma, which I have, will also guide me to always give spontaneously  so as create the karma to receive in the future or in the next or future rebirths.

On the other hand,if I choose a lifestyle of always receiving (money) and not giving, I will most likely become a self-grasping person and a miser and end up in rebirth in the lower realm of the Hungry Ghosts.


Furthermore, as as been said, 'Giving' is not all about giving money. We can give our time, our efforts and above all share Dharma, which is the highest form of Giving. Giving the Dharma is, in a way, helping  a person to start on their 'Path' towards attaining the Ultimate Happiness and Peace that they want, or planting seeds in them to start on this Path in the future.

kris

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2012, 08:05:27 PM »
My selfish mind will say to pick the first option :) but after studying Buddhism, I learn that always "taking" and being miserly and is the very cause for poverty.

About being born in rich or poor family has nothing to do with good or bad karma, it is what we do with the money.

For example, let's say I am born in a rich family. If I have good Karma, I will use the money to do charity, and benefit many people, but if I have bad Karma, I can be strongly attached to the money and because of that I do all the nasty stuffs to hurt others. Similarly to be born in poor family.

Anyway, in current society, most of the people who are born in rich family are usually very attached to money and will do whatever it takes to inherit the wealth and most of the time caused many family issues.. and to me, that is really bad karma.

pgdharma

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2012, 02:46:50 PM »
I would choose to be resident B. It is better to give than to receive.  If I have the good fortune to be born in a rich family, then I must also have dharma knowledge to understand that giving is one of the six paramitas. It is an act of generosity and cutting away miserliness. If I am not born to a rich family than I will create the causes for me to give. Having the fortune to know the dharma, to be born in a position to be able to give, we must take this opportunity to do even more so that in our next rebirth we may even offer more to others.

Not giving, greedy, no commitment, no responsibility and a laid back attitude will create the cause for taking rebirth as resident A.
 


Big Uncle

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2012, 05:13:14 PM »
You know, the choice is really depends on how much one knows and understands karma. Before I met the Dharma, I would have chosen to be on the receiving end of money. Why would I want to work so hard? I would not have any hesitations to be the first person at all. I just love easy money and the easy life because I get to do whatever I want.

However, after knowing the Dharma, I know what an easy life would do to my character and self-esteem. I know people who had it easy don't respect themselves because they didn't make the money. They often become angry and highly dissatisfied individuals. I wouldn't want to be like that and I don't want to exhaust all my good karma just to enjoy a few short years before everything is over. Therefore, I would rather be someone who owns a lot so I am able to give a lot to others. That's the most logical way to lead a meaningful life.

I think in the end of the day, it is not about how much we own that determines how much we give. I think people can give even more when we don't have much. Generosity is not just about money and material objects. It can be time, effort, care, love and so forth. People need to understand that and what truly creates the cause for wealth to arise. This is all very interesting, thank you for this thread.

Tenzin K

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #13 on: July 14, 2012, 04:13:00 PM »
Basically whether we are born poor or wealthy it’s really depending on our motivation at the end of the day whether we would able to benefit people.

Being poor and having karma to receive could be good and bad too so to being the person that rich and able to give. What important is able to meet and learn the dharma and set the right motivation. Any condition raises it’s all up to us to choose the right path to move on.

By practicing dharma either we are receive party we can always make good use o fthe money for  the growth of dharma and if we are the one having the karma to give then we give for the flourish of the dharma to grow too.   

 

Q

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Re: Which would you pick?
« Reply #14 on: July 15, 2012, 11:17:18 AM »
Ideally, it should be give and take. But if I have to choose, then it would be giving rather than taking.

However, as the result of that, it really doesn't matter to me if I am reborn into a poor or wealthy family. Being reborn into the human realm to meet the Dharma again is in it self the greatest gift of all... having spiritual richness outweighs material wealth, that is for sure.

Some people however, have the mindset that having money makes it easier to practice Dharma. I strongly oppose such an opinion. To have great wealth is equal to having a lot of sensual objects that pleasures us (not to mention the constant disappointments and fear of losing such wealth)... and we all know people are beings that desires pleasurable objects and sensations. For that very reason, most of the time, people who has everything they ever want is more difficult to practice the Dharma compared to one who doesn't.