Does this line in the metta Sutta — ‘Let none deceive another, or despise any being in any state.’ — mean action should be taken (to prevent deception)? If so, how and to what extent? (Deception often happens as protection or retribution, btw)
To further muddy the waters even some truthful statements can mislead, or can at least contribute to being misleading. Further, being (partially) truthful in certain ways, and in certain contexts — like combining misinformation and/or omitting other truths — can even shroud, coverup and/or obscure other truthfulness.
And what ought to be done if witnessing some being fooled without the conscious intent to fool? Here’s an possible example: someone’s zoom background image looking like it might be the actual real life background of what’s behind one in relation to one’s camera but it’s actually a custom chosen zoom background without any conscious awareness of potential deception. Or, I’ve been in the woods on zoom before and someone asked if I was using a zoom background image and I said no, and moved around to show it wasn’t.
I’ve also asked a few I suspected of being fools, “how do you deal with fools?” Is this a wise approach since I was ambiguous to whether or not I was accusing them of being a fool? It may have been more clear that I was trying to find this out though and/or glean wisdom from them.
See also the blog posts and podcasts:
Metta / Loving-Kindness Sutta
This is what should be done
By one who is skilled in goodness,
And who knows the path of peace:
Let them be able and upright,
Straightforward and gentle in speech,
Humble and not conceited,
Contented and easily satisfied,
Unburdened with duties and frugal in their ways.
Peaceful and calm and wise and skillful,
Not proud or demanding in nature.
Let them not do the slightest thing
That the wise would later reprove.
Wishing: In gladness and in safety,
May all beings be at ease.
Whatever living beings there may be;
Whether they are weak or strong, omitting none,
The great or the mighty, medium, short or small,
The seen and the unseen,
Those living near and far away,
Those born and to-be-born —
May all beings be at ease!
Let none deceive another,
Or despise any being in any state.
Let none through anger or ill-will
Wish harm upon another.
Even as a mother protects with her life
Her child, her only child,
So with a boundless heart
Should one cherish all living beings;
Radiating kindness over the entire world:
Spreading upwards to the skies,
And downwards to the depths;
Outwards and unbounded,
Freed from hatred and ill-will.
Whether standing or walking, seated or lying down
Free from drowsiness,
One should sustain this recollection.
This is said to be the sublime abiding.
By not holding to fixed views,
The pure-hearted one, having clarity of vision,
Being freed from all sense desires,
Is not born again into this world.Karaniya Metta Sutta: The Buddha’s Words on Loving-Kindness
translated from the Pali by The Amaravati Sangha
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