There seems to be a number of different views on what a renounced-life involves and, does not involve - expressed in this forum. We know as Buddhists, that ‘nibbida’ (disenchantment through to revulsion) is a necessary happening in the unfoldment of liberating insight. We also know that the Buddha taught a middle-way. We know that he rejected the extreme asceticism that he had practiced. He was renouncing worldliness when he became an ascetic but it became clear to him that the self-harm it involved was unskilful kamma. Liberation was not about self-torture and it was not about self-indulgence.
After his awakening the Buddha considered turning-away from the people, the culture and, society he was born into and, just leaving them all to their own destiny. He thought it was pointless to help people to understand - what he had understood - as the people around him had to much ‘dust in their eyes’. They could not see ‘anything’ clearly due to their defilements - their erroneous perceptions. Fortunately, he changed his mind and decided that ‘some’ might be able to ‘see’ if they were assisted by him. Their perceptions could be purified - they could gain greater clarity - through practicing the middle-way. He then spent the remainder of his long-life in constant service to others - without discrimination. Trying - tirelessly - to better human-beings so that they could enjoy ‘real peace’ and live harmoniously together with kindness and generosity. He taught people how to find peace in themselves and how to live harmoniously together through caring for each other in practical ways, through helping those in the greatest need and, through looking after the natural world - plants, animals, the creatures in the forests etc. - and those that lived with human beings.
What kind of renunciation is this - that the Buddha practiced and taught? It seemed to involve a great deal of practical (hands on) engagement in his culture and society? Was the Buddha a false-renunciate? If he was a real renunciate why did he not turn away from the world - why should he be concerned with the lives of people and animals - wild and domesticated?