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Are dirtbags Buddhists?

Original Post
Josh C · · Somewhere out West · Joined Nov 2010 · Points: 1,120

I was reading the "How to be a dirtbag" forum and had a thought. Part of what keeps people from being a real dirtbag is attachment to things because we need a house, apartment, room, storage unit, etc. in which to store our things. In other words, it's that damn rent or mortgage payment that stymies us. However, if one can let go of desire and our attachment to physical things, then one can live out of a conversion van or even a backpack (or whatever vehicle of choice) and never pay rent or a mortgage again. In this sense, maybe Siddhartha was the ultimate dirtbag.

abe r · · Boise, ID · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 55

But if Siddhartha did not drive around an $80,000 sprinter how could he call himself a dirtbag?

John Reeve · · Durango, formely from TX · Joined Nov 2018 · Points: 0

If non-attachment is the sine qua non of "buddhism", I really do feel like the folks I meet who are out climbing for months at a time might fit that idea.  There is a great deal of that kind of work in climbing, where we might both look at our lives with a great deal of love but not be so attached to them that we let our irrational fears of pain or death override our actions.

However, there is substantially more to that tradition, at least as much as I've understood from reading and hanging out with various folks who are involved with that religion.

As I understand it, even Shakyamuni Buddha gave up on giving up before finding enlightenment, though I might just be misunderstanding the story.  So simply giving up one kind of attachment doesn't mean you're not still living a life where you're still attached to stuff... I know plenty of hobos who climb who seem hekkin attached to the world in ways that drive them to drink heavily, for instance.

Long Ranger · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 331

Something tells me that measuring how Buddhist a dirtbag climber is, is itself not a very Buddhist thing to do - or at least misses the point.

Jcastleberry · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 81

No 

Rob Warden...Space Lizard · · Between Zion, Vegas, LA, an… · Joined Dec 2011 · Points: 115

...jesus fuck...No

Josh · · Golden, CO · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 1,050

I don't think you can reduce Buddhism to "non-attachment" only.  Plenty of climbers-- dirtbag or otherwise-- fail to live up to some of the other principle elements of the Buddhist practice.  Loving kindness, for example, or Right Livelihood...

Ashort · · Las Vegas, NV · Joined Apr 2014 · Points: 55

Even if you did reduce it down to non-attachemnt the dirtbag is still attached to climbing and his ego. 

mbk · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2013 · Points: 0
Andy Shoemaker · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 65
abe r wrote: But if Siddhartha did not drive around an $80,000 sprinter how could he call himself a dirtbag?

With the median home value in many places climbers want to live skyrocking (750K in Seattle, 1.3M in SF, 500K+ in the Front Range CO), one could argue that an 80K sprinter van is indeed a RADICALLY cheap way to live.  Especially when you factor in the additional cost of living in traditional housing (taxes, utilities, upkeep, paying the old mortgage holder). 


Does this make you Buddhist- still a resounding HELL NO.  But I do think even the "privileged" 80K sprinter owners have adopted at least a single tennent of Buddhism- that is being mindful and deliberate with any resource one is in possession of,  be that their belongs, money, or indeed their words.
T M · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2016 · Points: 42

Deuteronomy 8:19

Aaron Nash · · North Bend, WA · Joined Apr 2011 · Points: 212

Good idea marrying "dirtbags" into a religious group; two things MP like to froth over. The premise is a bit flawed though, so it kind of falls flat.

Good creativity, poor execution; I'll give it a 6/10

Ryan Dresser · · Ft Collins, CO · Joined Mar 2017 · Points: 40

Another question to ask would be, are Buddhists dirtbags?  

C Archibolt · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 959

Not Buddhists ... But are dirtbags degenerates? 

Long Ranger · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 331

Not a cannibal... but are Buddhists delicious?

the schmuck · · Albuquerque, NM · Joined Feb 2012 · Points: 115
C Archibolt wrote: Not Buddhists ... But are dirtbags degenerates? 

Yes

the schmuck · · Albuquerque, NM · Joined Feb 2012 · Points: 115
Long Ranger wrote: Not a cannibal... but are Buddhists delicious?

Also yes

C Archibolt · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 959
Long Ranger wrote: Not a cannibal... but are Buddhists delicious?

Grass finished 

Brian ~+~+~+ · · Oceanside · Joined Aug 2017 · Points: 0
Josh C wrote: I was reading the "How to be a dirtbag" forum and had a thought. Part of what keeps people from being a real dirtbag is attachment to things because we need a house, apartment, room, storage unit, etc. in which to store our things. In other words, it's that damn rent or mortgage payment that stymies us. However, if one can let go of desire and our attachment to physical things, then one can live out of a conversion van or even a backpack (or whatever vehicle of choice) and never pay rent or a mortgage again. In this sense, maybe Siddhartha was the ultimate dirtbag.

Mu.

Maurice Chaunders · · boise, id · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 5

I don’t think dirtbags are Buddhists. I think there is an important relationship between attachment to any things (houses, possessions, etc) and anything (climbing in general). These dirtbags may have fewer attachments, but are they deeper? Take a rack from the dirtbag and tell me they are Buddhist. Take a look at the forums here - you can hardly sift through the sales forum because the first page is all stuff from the past hour. Sellers range but are there dirtbags obsessing over specific shoes and layers and the ultimate piece of gear to do it all? Just one jacket for rain and sleet and climbing and belaying. Ok, it’s one possession, but how important is that one possession to a dirtbag vs a trusty with hella Arcteryx gear?

Climbing dirtbags are perhaps more attached and therefore more at risk of suffering because of their obsession with climbing. You’d crush many people if you took away their house. How true is the same for dirtbags if you took away their ability to climb?

Imagine two criminals in jail. One was a lawyer, Lost his house and job and freedoms, rotting in jail. The other is a dirtbag, they took his ‘92 Saturn wagon, camping gear and rack, rotting in jail. Who is suffering more in jail? The lawyer can replicate his life, to a small degree, in jail - he can have deodorant, a cell he sleeps in, etc. The dirtbag can’t climb. All things being equal, who would be more miserable, who would suffer more?

Matt N · · Santa Barbara, CA · Joined Oct 2010 · Points: 389

...would that make Marie Kondo a Buddhist or a Dirtbag?

How long until someone tries to make Dirtbag a religion and gets tax exempt status? Stretch those dollars even farther! Get tax deductible donations from your IG followers! Your IG "followers" now become your "flock"!

Why hasn't this been done yet?

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

General Climbing
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