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shrubbery's avatar

How would you treat Vampires if you were a Buddhist?

Asked by shrubbery (10246points) September 24th, 2008

One of the requirements of a Buddhist following the Middle-Way/Eightfold Path is not to harm another living/sentient creature.
If you were to assume that they existed, Vampires aren’t exactly living, but they’re not dead, and they are sentient.
If you were a Buddhist would you have to let them suck your blood? After all, you’re not supposed to be attached to anything, would that include being attached to your blood?
Or since they are the undead, would you be just in killing one?
Also, if they’re the undead, are they or are they not part of the endless cycle of birth, death and rebirth?
If not, if you were to kill one, would he attain Nirvana, since he is not in the cycle?
Or if yes, does that mean if you kill one he’ll be able to come back as something else? Or since Vampires are beautiful and invincible does that make them higher up than humans, and would they be able to attain Nirvana from there?
Then again, to go up a level in the cycle/caste system, would it be ok for them to go around sucking peoples’ blood? After all, they would only be fulfilling their nature. Or would this be considered ‘bad’, and they would go down a level? Or are they on a lower level anyway if it is ‘bad’?
Any random thoughts?

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26 Answers

augustlan's avatar

Shrubbery, now my head hurts!

sarapnsc's avatar

I’d unBuddist myself for 10 minutes, during that 10 minutes, I’d stick a stake right through their heart, and then return to being a Buddhist again.

shrubbery's avatar

He…he… sorry :P
Sara, good one!

cyndyh's avatar

Assuming we were living in a world where vampires are real, staking a vampire wouldn’t be killing or causing harm to them. They’re already not alive. You’re just aiding them in their salvation, freeing them from suffering, and reducing the suffering of many innocent people.

lifeflame's avatar

If I was Buddhist I would worry about more practical questions (such as my own death and the suffering that currently exists in the world) rather than hypothetical vampires…

I’m not being snarky here, Buddha was extremely pragmatic about views of life and death (c.f. parable of the poisoned arrow, where he says if someone was shot by a poisoned arrow, the first thing you do is to take it out, not wonder who shot it or life after death…);
Plus, he said that there should be no absolutes. He even said that if someone put meat in your begging bowl you should eat it. So… go figure…

Harp's avatar

OK, I’ll bite.

Asking a Buddhist about hypotheticals is usually a fruitless endeavor. The Buddhist wouldn’t have any idea how she would behave in this or that situation. If you say to yourself, “I’d do this or that because that’s what Buddhists do”, then you’re all tangled up in ideas about Buddhism, and that’s a very UN-Buddhist place to be. So, ironically, if your Buddhist has a vampire plan, then you’re probably dealing with a faux-Buddhist.

If you want to see how the Buddhist would respond to a vampire, I’m afraid you’d need the help of a vampire.

shrubbery's avatar

Ohhh come on, I know all of that, it was just a bit of fun :P

deaddolly's avatar

Not so sure of the Buddhist thing, all I know is I find vampires sexy. I wouldn’t mind being bitten…

syz's avatar

This question gets my vote for most obscure/bizarre…..

Harp's avatar

OK shrub, then…

All Buddhists keep Buffy’s number on speed-dial, right along with Sarah Palin (in case of moose attack). Let somebody else screw up their karma while saving your butt. It’s the Buddhist Way.

shrubbery's avatar

sweet Harp, thanks :P yours gets best answer so far
and thanks Syz haha

fireside's avatar

I believe that the best response would be to drink a lot of garlic tea, and maybe move to a new town or at least stay inside at night.

GAMBIT's avatar

If I were a Buddhist and a vampire came up to me I would say hello how are you? Please sit down.

Please tell me what pleasure do you get in biting people on the neck? Interesting. Since I am a vegetarian I don’t have any taste for any type of blood. So you like to sleep in a box that must be comfortable for you. Does it take you back to your mothers womb? You say you have lived for centuries. So have I. I am on my 16th reincarnation. Well you must be tired. I will let you sleep.

Please let me leave you with one of my teachings before you go in your coffin.

“We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make our world”.

wundayatta's avatar

If I were a Buddhist (to the tune of If I Were a Rich Man)

If I were a Buddhist,
And I met a lovely vampire who was hanging from a tree,
I would ask her if she needed help
descending to the earth next to me.

If I were a Buddhist,
I would never make my neck a feeding place for her.
Unless, of course she had somehow fogged my mind;
her bloody stew that me she caused to stir.

Ok. This is a dubious task to take any further. I think I’ll stop before I get any further behind. But hey! If I could write good lyrics, don’t you think that would be an ironic tune to sing them to?

PupnTaco's avatar

I’d treat them like the Mormons do and write a series of best-selling teen romance novels, then option the screen rights and rake in the bucks.

loser's avatar

Lurve to daloon for creativity in a post!!!

I guess if the vampire was interfering with my zen, I would have to drive a stake through it’s heart. I don’t believe any Buddhist teachings even mentioned not doing that, specificly.

deaddolly's avatar

@ pupntaco….yes, my kid is addicted to those damn books.

Knotmyday's avatar

To fully understand the theoretical Buddhist reaction to a theoretical vampyre one must first understand the Buddhist concept of Mind.

A vampyre possesses sentient thought, or consciousness. It also possesses a corporeal body. However, a vampyre’s body is composed of dead flesh…

According to Buddhism, the living-being is composed of “mind” and matter. The mind is the energy source that gives life to the body. The mind interacts with the physical body to prodice sentient thought. The mind is an evolving current or stream of energy, which is refined by passing from one body at the moment of death into another body, on and on until a final purity, or “Nibbana,” is reached, and it is released into the pure mind state.

A mind, nested in a technically dead, yet locomotive body, is trapped in a state of stagnance. It will never, unless artificially set free (stake, sunlight etc.) experience rebirth or progress into the Nibbanic endstate.

It would therefore behoove all good Buddhists to liberate the entrapped mind inhabiting a vampyric body utilizing prescribed methods; and rest secure in the knowledge that you cannot kill a body which is already dead.

aidje's avatar

I’m with Harp. Keep Buffy and the Scooby Gang on speed dial.

stratman37's avatar

what if there were no hypothetical questions?

cyndyh's avatar

What if this wasn’t one of them?

mattw's avatar

what if the vampire came to you and asked for The Buddha’s teachings? I would be happy to help another being along the path and to the Dharma.

bianlink's avatar

I would let them drink my blood.

bunnygrl's avatar

I’m not particularly religious either way, but I can’t bear anything being hurt. Not a spider, ant anything. So re vampires? live and let not-live I suppose :-)

talljasperman's avatar

They would capture and treat the vampire and cure it of vampirism and then send him on his way.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I love this question.

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