Quote Originally Posted by Domtar View Post
I confess my problems with it-- I discovered that I did not agree with the teachings about "nothingness" or trying to reach a state of emptiness as the ultimate goal of all existence (no thanks!)- I even kind of wonder if that's some trickster spirit interjecting some mischief to the heart of a beautiful spiritual traditions and teachings that in times before buddhism believed in a vibrant active spirit realm rather nihilism as pround..
This is my major problem with Buddhism too. Maybe I'm too attached to existing

Quote Originally Posted by Domtar View Post

I'm not sure if you're familiar with ayurveda but there is discussion there about the origins of harmful behaviors, in our ancestors deeds andexperiences-- many types of suffering canbelonglived, fort generations or entrenched within cultures and thinking patterns.
This was taught to me in church as generational curses.
From a secular point of view, I was listening to someone speak recently about the chemicals that are in plastics and how those chemicals might be to blame for the onset of early puberty in girls. Also in the show, they were talking about how sensitive the fetus is in certain stages of development. In one case, scientists discovered that if the mother or father rat is too anxious at the time of conception, the offspring will be predisposed to anxiety. I think this is a very interesting commentary on nature vs nurture.

Quote Originally Posted by Domtar View Post
I think in an emergency- self defense is fine so I will not presribe absolute non-violence- in fact I think absolute non-violence itself may be in opposition to compassion as an active protective force.
Oh wow! I've been looking for a way to word that belief. Very well put.

Quote Originally Posted by Domtar View Post
However the goal would not so much be to harm those who cause harm, but to dismantle that within them causing harm, leaving the rest of them in tact. If possible simply using a shield, running away etc-- is ideal, however this can leave harmful beings with a certain amount of power to keep causing harm.
So true. There is that quote: The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

Quote Originally Posted by Domtar View Post
I will also add, my bent leaned toward absolute non-judgement as some kind of ideal but in some ways absolute non-judgment undoes itself as an ideal. I mean if one can not judge anything, one cannot judge judgement itself as good or bad. ThereforeI see judgement as at times a useful tool but with a lot of complications, including the limitations of the human mind to actually understand what forces caused an event or behavior to occur and to what exist that we consider "free will" to actively choose wrong doing may or may not have been involved.
Yes, it is a trick on words. I think the term 'Negative Capability' could also tie in with non-judgement. Negative Capability is a term coined by John Keats in this sentence:
At once it struck me, what quality went to form a Man of Achievement, especially in literature, and which Shakespeare possessed so enormously- I mean Negative Capability, that is when man is capable of being in uncertainties. Mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact and reason.'
So I think in this context, non-judgement is about being okay with the not knowing. Non-judgement I believe seeks middle ground in that it attempts to step outside of the situation and take stock of it from a non-detached perspective. It is about not being too heavily invested in either point of view. Otherwise, you can get too caught up in believing your cause is righteous and not see the whole picture.