Reply To: habitual behaviour and suffering


@ Christian,

When person A sees a disabled person there might arise unpleasant feeling in his mind. Maybe some aversion and discomfort. This person might turn his head and fake not seeing this disabled person or maybe he would belittle this disabled person. I think this is not oke, not so good, immoral, not meritorious.

In person B a feeling of sympathy might arise seeing this disabled person. Maybe based upon this feeling of sympathy this person does not turn his head, and maybe he says or does something compassionate, something friendly. Maybe they have a nice meeting. I personally think this is better, moral.

Both kinds of behaviour conditionally arise.

I think the Buddha teaches that such kinds of volitional driven behaviour, meritorious and also demetourious, arise with avijja as condition (SN12.51).

In other words, when avijja is present one still can do good, meritorious deed. But those deeds are not pure.

The teaching (MN117) talk about this as the difference between mundane and supramundane.

The right mundane path, right view etc. is related to meritorious formation. It is connected to merit. It will bring good, happiness in this or another life. Will not free from samsara but bring higher rebirth. We must go this path and accumulate merit to enter the supra-mundane path.

The wrong mundane path, wrong view etc. is connected to demitorious volitional formations, to demerit, and will bring suffering in one way or the other in this life or others. We have to abandon this path.

Acting good or bad due to some habitual force is mundane. I can sense this is not really authentic behaviour. Habitual behaviour, even when you do something meritorious such as being friendely to that disabled persoon, is not really authenic or pure. It is not supra-mundana.

Maybe you can not connect to this understanding but that does not mean is it wrong.