Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Dalai Lama on the Marital Act

"Sexual organs were created for reproduction between the male element and the female element–and everything that deviates from that is not acceptable from a Buddhist point of view," spake His Holiness, quoted by Stephen Hand, with more — Not Just Catholics.

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20 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course ever since there hve been travelers to Tibet who stayed long enough to get to know Buddhist monks, they have mentioned in their reminiscences that homosexual relations are quite common in Buddhist monasteries; even close friends of the Dalai Llama have said as much.

This is marketing, and not product design.

6:00 PM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

To be fair, homosexuality, erroneously called by the media "pedophilia," also exists in Catholic circles (as it does everywhere), but is rightly condemned by Catholic doctrine, as it is by all religious doctrine.

What is marketing when it comes to His Holiness is the fact that "[h]is American publisher even asked him to remove the injunctions against homosexuality from his book, 'Ethics for the New Millennium,' for fear they would offend American readers, and the Dalai Lama acquiesced" -- Pope John Paul II, the Dalai Lama, and Sex.

7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heinrich Harrer, one of the Dalai Lama's closest friends, and the sort of person who would have been accepted into any real world A-Team, (after escaping from an Indian POW camp, he climbed mountains the Tibetans didn't think could be climbed) mentions that there was an awful lot of hanky panky going on between the monks of Tibet's lamaseries.

Men who make claims they know not to be true are called con men, even if they dress up in bed sheets. And don't get me started on Wojtyla, an actor right until his last breath.

4:39 AM  
Blogger Stephen said...

And don't get me started on Wojtyla, an actor right until his last breath.

May I ask what's your beef with John Paul the Fair-to-Middling ("Great" is a bit of a stretch for me)?

12:15 PM  
Blogger Jonathan Wolfe said...

"Men who make claims they know not to be true are called con men, even if they dress up in bed sheets. And don't get me started on Wojtyla, an actor right until his last breath."

Ah, son only the pure can say pure things. Got it.

4:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stephen,

My main beef with the man is that deliberately and consistently acted in bad faith; I would not call him a gentleman. (And friends of mine had dealings with him.)

He preached a message of radical God-given restrictions on human sexual relations, to the point of declaring all active contraception illicit, and found time to jet around the world to Woodstocks for clientele, but never found time to see that something was done about the thousands and thousands of letters making their way to the Vatican complaining about children being abused. He had to know about it (as we saw when the pederast circles in the Legionaries of Christ lost their Papal protection), and if he didn't, it wouldn't make him less culpable.

It was his solemn obligation as a shepherd (the man would call his airplane on trips overseas "Shepherd One") to see that such things were stopped; there is such a thing is Canon Law. In other words, he was there for the Papal rock concerts and the hobnobbing with foreign heads of state, but not the sort of person who could be bothered to do the less enjoyable work.

Is a prelate who jets around on "Shepherd One," knowing full well that he is aiding and abetting pederasts at the same time not a thoroughly dishonest and disgusting individual?

Wojtyla was a company man through and through, and sadly one who didn't even give much of damn about his company.

His even sadder legacy is, in my opinion, that he while Wojtyla was off on his flights of fancy, the standards in the clergy were in freefall. Priest friends of mine, whose intellectual pursuits earned the respect of the world's ranking authorities in their areas of expertise, have told me that they are shocked by what morons are now ordained as priests. This surely will have consequences down the road. Every single priest I have known who was born in 1930-1950 with whom I have discussed the issue believes or believed that catastrophic mistakes had been made.

I think that his pig-headed insistence on clerical celibacy, wit the resultant drastic decline in the quality of priests, will probably prove to be even more of a negative legacy.

Does this answer your question?

12:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jonathan,

There is a difference between saying such acts are not "licit" or "proper" and saying that they are not "acceptable", when they were, in fact, accepted.

12:47 AM  
Blogger Jonathan Wolfe said...

"Is a prelate who jets around on "Shepherd One," knowing full well that he is aiding and abetting pederasts at the same time not a thoroughly dishonest and disgusting individual?"

Knowing full well? You are talking of a man who grew up in a society where accusations of all sorts of sexual immorality was a standard Communist tactic for putting down dissident priests. For all you know, this man who saw his church under constant assault was more than wary of such accusations because of his experience, especially since people like Maciel presented themselves as people on his side of the culture war. So, I find it foolish to attribute this "knew full well" BS to John Paul II.

"I think that his pig-headed insistence on clerical celibacy, wit the resultant drastic decline in the quality of priests, will probably prove to be even more of a negative legacy."

Yeah, because the permission to have sex will increase brain capacity.

Please.

4:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The spin you cite is absurd.

Wojtyla grew up in a world where the Gestapo and Communist police would manufacture cases againt good priests where there was no evidence and there were no rumors.

In his later years, he ignored complaints from the faithful, where there were ample rumors and no politicians with an axe to grind. He got excellent grades in philosophy, and there is no way he didn't notice these not so subtle difference, but trash looks after its own.

Permission to marry - in many dioceses priests already have implicit permission to have relations - would widen the pool of candidates, thereby allowing once holy Mother Church to be more picky. I shouldn't have to explain this to you.

8:55 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

Anonymous, Orthodox churches and Protestant ecclesial communities that ordain married men have just as much trouble with vocations as we Catholics do. This inconvenient fact casts serious doubt upon your thesis that ditching celibacy would yield a bigger and better pool from which to draw clergy.

2:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stephen,


If you consult an introductory textbook on statistics, you'll find that you it's not acceptable to reduce situations in which multiple independent variables exist to a single variable. You wouldn't for example, claim that the decrease in life expectancy in San Francisco in the 1980s, Rwanda in the mid 90s, and New Orleans in 2005 were all because they sold Coca-Cola in those places, would you?

I have known many, good and fine men who say their lives would have taken another path but for the requirement of celibacy.

6:45 AM  
Blogger Stephen said...

Anonymous, so, we're to change a discipline with apostolic origins based on your anecdotal evidence? Mmhmm. Good luck with that, boss.

12:14 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

No, Anonymous, I "insult" you for arguing on tenuous utilitarian (and merely anecdotal) grounds against a discipline with apostolic origins and theological significance.

Moreover, your reading of history is shoddy. While the Gregorian reforms of the 11th century reaffirmed and strengthened the prohibition of clerical marriage, they cannot reasonably be construed as a change in discipline. The Gregorian reforms also condemned simony; by your tortured logic, simony was also permitted prior to 1000 AD. Pure tendentious nonsense.

12:07 AM  
Blogger Stephen said...

Per the eminent Jesuit scholar Fr. Herbert Thurston, "it may fairly be said that by the time of St. Leo the Great (r. 440-461) the law of celibacy was generally recognized in the West."

So, you're only off by 600 years.

12:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stephen,

The source you cite in no way contradicts my claims. "Generally" and "in all cases" are totally different concepts. By what tortured logic do you impute an error to me when the source you cite in no way suggests one?

Take it from someone educated by eminent Jesuits; "generally" is a weasel word.

Celibacy is not obligatory in Orthodox churches, nor for the Byzantine Catholic clergy, who, being under the Pope, are part of the Western church. Is it not tendentious if not dishonest to pretend the married Byzantine Catholic clergy do not exist? So the discpline of celibacy, whatever complications it may bring, is ultimately an administrative matter.

I am not exceptionally happy about all this, but it seems to me, that in a day when there are websites for gay priests, and a steady drumbeat of outings in the press, and when there are support groups for the girlfriends of RC priests, (I know of a few in my vicinity), it seems to me that the mature thing to do is either a) to enforce the discpline, which is very unlikely to happen, or b) be adult enough to admit that rhetoric and reality diverge, and bring the two closer together.

12:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stephen,

I am sorry for my short-temperedness, which is largely not of my choosing.

I ask your forgiveness.

1:00 AM  
Blogger Jonathan Wolfe said...

"In his later years, he ignored complaints from the faithful, where there were ample rumors and no politicians with an axe to grind. He got excellent grades in philosophy, and there is no way he didn't notice these not so subtle difference, but trash looks after its own."

No politicians with an axe to grind? You mean, no Socialists, Liberals and various New Left wanting to bring the Church to heel? No rabid radical traditionalists looking to promote sedevecantism? No assassins, no Cold War, no Cairo Population Conference, etc. etc.?

Right, it was all sunny in Philadelphia when the accusations were made.

"Permission to marry - in many dioceses priests already have implicit permission to have relations - would widen the pool of candidates, thereby allowing once holy Mother Church to be more picky. I shouldn't have to explain this to you."

Oh, you'd have to, because all you really have is anecdotal wishful thinking. If they were deterred by celibacy, it occurs to me that priesthood may not have been their calling.

As for these priests with "special permission", you do realize that many of them are permanently stuck in the parishes they came in with (for most of the priests were former Protestant pastors)? Its because, unlike the single celibate, they cannot move around. Their marriages already restrict the amount of time they can render in service to their parishioners.

No, your solution would not only not bolster the numbers by much, it would also result in a dip in quality in service. A priest must not be forced to pit his family against his parish, diocese or church, which is why the special permission is restricted only to special occasions. If the Church were not a global church, your suggestion may make sense. But the Church is a global Church.

2:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look Jonathan,

The church always had, and presumably always will have, unequivocally rotten apples, who are known to many of their peers, especially those who cluster around the chancelleries. In the old days, such people were quietly put out to pasture; under Wojtyla they were promoted.

You wholly misconstrue the people to which I refer, I am referring to the many, many dioceses, in Latin America and Europe, in which priests are not disciplined for having common law relationships.

As for your last claim: there is no reason why the requirement of celibacy cannot be decided by the bishops' conferences.

4:33 PM  
Blogger Jonathan Wolfe said...

"In the old days, such people were quietly put out to pasture; under Wojtyla they were promoted."

I don't remember in what sense Leo X, Alexander VI and that whole Renaissance coterie got "quietly put out to pasture". Furthermore, I don't think the concept of "getting kicked up" was invented by then.

"You wholly misconstrue the people to which I refer, I am referring to the many, many dioceses, in Latin America and Europe, in which priests are not disciplined for having common law relationships."

The bishop that confirmed me was later found to have had a mistress and two children by her. He is now a laicized ex-bishop. And this was in the mid-90's. This sort of thing is entrusted upon the local diocese or bishops' conference. Clearly, while enforcement is not perfect, it does exist.

Furthermore, since you are citing Latin America here, the Church in Latin America has always had to struggle against tinpot dictators and revolutionary governments. The ageing "revolutionary government" of Mexico, for example, was so anti-clerical that it was illegal for a priest to wear his clerical garb in public. Pope John Paul II managed to get a meeting with the leaders of this government, which led to a softening of its anti-clerical stance. The man who arranged this ground-breaking meeting? That monster, Fr. Maciel. And you wonder why Pope John Paul II felt protective of him? He lives in a country where his kind are persecuted, and in John Paul II's book, persecution includes trumped up charges of sexual misconduct. Sure, the charges turned out to be true, but one can understand why the Pope would feel the need to protect such a man. It was wrong, but it hardly makes John Paul II this demon you are so intent on burning.

Pope John Paul II performed admirably for a man with many weaknesses.

"As for your last claim: there is no reason why the requirement of celibacy cannot be decided by the bishops' conferences."

And the bishops' conferences would do well to decide for clerical celibacy, considering on how much Western dioceses require fresh priests from other vocation-rich places who would otherwise be unable to move around frequently if saddled with family and roots.

1:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shame on me; I was refering to the more recent days when the church was a viable, healthy, institution, and assumed you'd get it.

My beef with Maciel goes beyond the boys in his boudoir; in my opinion his entire gang has the deletorious psychological trappings of a cult. The reason Maciel and el presidente kissed and made up had nothing to do with Maciel's ability, and everything to do with the fact that el presidente was scared manureless that Mexico was about to go the way of Cuba. At such a juncture, el presidente would have made nice with Charlie Manson.

Your claim, by the way, is a lie. Maciel was protected long after this come to Jesus moment, because of all the cash he threw around in Rome.

It may be worth mentioning at this juncture that Wojtyla's passionate embrace of Maciel came at the expense, among others, of the Jesuits, the one order with an impeccable history of caring for and helping South America's troubled people. We owe it to Wojtyla and his belief that the whole world was like Poland that soon Protestants will account for the majority of Brazil's Christians. If this is an admirable achievement...

In my opinion, if the church needs to go to Third World hellholes and dangle the possibility of a career among the rich white people with their wholly different cultural and educational backgrounds and roots under the noses of impoverished youths if it wishes to maintain its cadres it is doing something incredibly wrong.

I have witnessed enough conversations between priests from third world countries in and outside of the industrialized countries to tell you how they spell their mi$$ionary po$ting$.

Do the swarthy types who you envision as Saviours of the Church not also have family and roots from which they tear themselves to spread the Good News in more affluent climes? Are you not a racist to think that Africans and others should be torn from their family and roots, but not more pallid peoples?

8:27 AM  

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