The Unsmiling Bodhisattva: Ending Our Silent Collaboration With the War Machine

BodhisattvaVia Dig Within: The blog of Kevin Ryan:

Buddhist scholar Graeme MacQueen gave a talk that explained why Buddhists should take action to stop war and its causes.  Unfortunately, even the most compassionate people in our western society often find justification for doing nothing while suffering grows around them.  Many Buddhists are in that frame of mind and they justify their non-action by claiming that their responsibility is soley to avoid violence in themselves.  But Professor MacQueen has challenged this stance, recalling Buddhist scripture and revisiting the concept of a bodhisattva.

As Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “There comes a time when silence is betrayal.”  Similarly, Professor MacQueen asks in this talk if we have the right to “give away things that don’t belong to us … the earth … species … ecosystems … the futures of our children and other people’s children.”  Through silent collaboration, that is what many people are doing today.

Graeme is now a leading voice for the 9/11 truth movement, as well as being my friend and mentor.  He and I have been joined by several others as we plan for The Toronto Hearings, coming this September.

Read More: Dig Within: The blog of Kevin Ryan

, , , , , ,

  • Anonymous

    Pretty solid stuff.

  • MoralDrift

    Pretty solid stuff.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    A great many people misinterpret Buddhist strictures as encouraging utter neutrality and complete apathy. Nothing could be farther from the truth. If Right Thought and Right Speech lead one…not to seek conflict…but into a state of being where another seeks conflict with you…opposing them non-violently but with firmness and conviction is entirely justifiable. Passion is to be scorned…but one can look dispassionately at a situation or issue and see a course that must be taken. To travel through life and balance these things while smothering the impulse to react with haste and let emotion reign…there is the challenge…and it isn’t a challenge that can be met by simply bowing out and pretending that you have been instructed to be utterly un-involved. Its a challenge I only meet on occasion…most of the time my passions drag me astray…sometimes even wonderfully astray ( but as Bobo Roshi found his enlightenment as ‘the fucking priest’…we all have our paths unfolding before us…who is to say mine has been wholly errant?)

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    A great many people misinterpret Buddhist strictures as encouraging utter neutrality and complete apathy. Nothing could be farther from the truth. If Right Thought and Right Speech lead one…not to seek conflict…but into a state of being where another seeks conflict with you…opposing them non-violently but with firmness and conviction is entirely justifiable. Passion is to be scorned…but one can look dispassionately at a situation or issue and see a course that must be taken. To travel through life and balance these things while smothering the impulse to react with haste and let emotion reign…there is the challenge…and it isn’t a challenge that can be met by simply bowing out and pretending that you have been instructed to be utterly un-involved. Its a challenge I only meet on occasion…most of the time my passions drag me astray…sometimes even wonderfully astray ( but as Bobo Roshi found his enlightenment as ‘the fucking priest’…we all have our paths unfolding before us…who is to say mine has been wholly errant?)

  • http://twitter.com/Sciamanoinglese Matthew O’Connell

    Avoidance of reality is a key Buddhist strategy unfortunately. Many get confused about the difference between adopting a religious identity/mask, and the deeper sense of practice and ‘waking up.’ It’s amazing how confused so many Buddhist are about the fact that Buddhism is essentially waking up and seeing and engaging with life as it is. Renunciation is negotiable for lay practitioners rather than an excuse for escaping from the unpleasantness of life. If an individual is not doing anything with their greater mindfulness and patience, then they are either not very evolved in their practice (no shame in that) or narcissistic spiritual bums. The problem is the culture of defining experience as spiritual or non-spiritual. We mustn’t confuse the ideals of Buddhism with results of Buddhism though as it can produce unrealistic expectation about what followers can actually do. 

    • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

      I agree with Matthew’s opening statement.  Buddhists should smoke Buddha, Eat Jesus, and Shit Satan.  Yamaoka Tesshu was such a a man.  A Young man in Tiananmen square, a nun who conflagrates to end war.  Theirs is a passionate knowledge of the reality of immortality.  As for trolls who find it clever to demonize opposition for whatever “reason”, you are making a shitty karmic reality sandwich for yourself after all.  Let that juicy turd just run right down your cheeks you spiritual coward. WUTANG!

      • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

        I am available for Children’s parties…

  • http://twitter.com/Sciamanoinglese Matthew O’Connell

    Avoidance of reality is a key Buddhist strategy unfortunately. Many get confused about the difference between adopting a religious identity/mask, and the deeper sense of practice and ‘waking up.’ It’s amazing how confused so many Buddhist are about the fact that Buddhism is essentially waking up and seeing and engaging with life as it is. Renunciation is negotiable for lay practitioners rather than an excuse for escaping from the unpleasantness of life. If an individual is not doing anything with their greater mindfulness and patience, then they are either not very evolved in their practice (no shame in that) or narcissistic spiritual bums. The problem is the culture of defining experience as spiritual or non-spiritual. We mustn’t confuse the ideals of Buddhism with results of Buddhism though as it can produce unrealistic expectation about what followers can actually do. 

  • 36thchamber

    I disagree with the posts so far. I’ve been studying Buddhism for almost a decade (mostly Zen) and I think a small degree of apathy is really promoted within the teachings. The reason being the idea of karma. Everytime I “do” something, I create a possibly infinite series of effects. Some of those effects will be of the kind that are generally regarded as “good” others will be of the kind that are generally regarded as “bad.” The problem is I can’t control those effects.

    The “middle way” is knowing when it’s appropriate to “do” something and knowing when it’s appropriate to be passive. The bigger the event I “do” is (e.g. assassinating a president), the bigger and more convoluted my karma.

    This isn’t to say Buddhism promotes ANTIpathy. There’s a big difference. If I have an opportunity to directly save a life or end someone’s suffering in some manner, I should probably do so. However, I shouldn’t go out of my way to do so. For example, let’s say I go out of my way to safe some starving children somewhere in Africa, and I go out of my way to provide them with education on safe sexual practices and so on. Well, that seems like a “good” deed, but I’ve just created a whole series of effects which I have no control over. What if one of the kids I save and taught to keep himself sexually safe ends up becoming a warlord? And because I taught him safe sex, he now survives much longer than any of his adversaries, he continues to accumulate power until he leaves an entire region in ruins?

    The point, again, is that what seemed like a good deed, really led to a lot of suffering. And things like this happen fairly regularly.

    The idea is that most of the suffering is caused by people “doing” things. Trying to make money for example. Or think about the Tea Party, they truly and honestly believe they are doing the “right” thing and are attempting to save the country. But in their efforts are really making things a lot worse, probably, at least for the time being.

    Which brings up another problem: How do I know I’m right? How do I know I’m really the one who is doing the “right” and “good” thing? Of course I think I’m doing the right thing, that’s why I’m doing it. But the Ku Klux Klan thought they were doing the right thing, convinced of it actually, and really, they probably weren’t.

    Of course, examples like Martin Luther King are the counter point. He thought he was doing the right thing, and for the most part he did. However, there is still a lot of hate and anger in this country because of things like the civil rights movement, and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi. So while it was probably best that the civil rights movement took place, we are still suffering the “karma” of that event, and not all of it is good karma.  Perhaps, to use a Buddhist perspective, he was a Bodhisattva, though, which most of us are not.

    I know this has been a long-winded rant, but it’s up to each person to decide on their own their level of participation. If a person has studied Buddhism fairly thoroughly and doesn’t necessarily agree with becoming more “active” in certain movements because that person doesn’t want to take on that karma, he or she shouldn’t have to. And they shouldn’t be made to feel like they have to.

    To deny the “apathetic” impulse in Buddhism is to ignore the long line of hermits and monastic reclusism throughout Buddhist history.

    If one, on the other hand, wants to take that risk, then they are also welcome to. There is also a long history of those “active” or “engaged” Buddhist practitioners.

    Personally, I always try to find the “middle way.” I support a lot of movements, but I don’t go out of my way to “lead” or physically participate. This may make me a coward in some people’s eyes and that’s fine. I’m not looking for validation. But I think the problem is that too many people care too much about stupid shit. And the way to combat zealots is not to become a zealot in return.

    • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

      I’m sorry but you sound completely childish here.  The “spiritual bypass” of well who am I to know what is right or how am I to know that my good deed won’t cause bad things down the line.  What a bunch of solipsistic nonsense.  Give me a break.  So anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a “zealot” and should recuse themselves of any participation in affecting anything for fear of “bad karma”.  

      How do you know writing such a bland, banal and philosophically impotent blog post isn’t clouding your karma right now?  Perhaps the future MLK is reading right now but because he is not yet out of the metaphysical jungle and has no sword of reason to slash through such an expanse he will read your post and think to himself, yeah I was gonna devote my life to truth, justice, and liberty but I may offend someone down the line and I don’t want that on my karmic permanent record.  Excuse me I just need to throw up a bit (BULLSHIIIITTTTT)  Sorry when I puke I tend to curse….

      I mean really dude? really?  Let’s review your words here; “and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi.”  Do you masturbate to Mother Jones magazines?  Where are you getting any of this?  Hey Super Buddhist, do you have any friends who are in anyway involved in the Tea Party?  Perhaps they are buddha beings too? Or does that crimp your no-self’s selflessness?

      I translated your post.  Here you go.  Oh heaven! I’m not actually in complete control, guess I will just stay in my head!  It’s safe there! I can rationalize anything that should alarm me!  Let’s all just retreat to the woods and chant ohm.  That’ll show em!  

      Way to miss the point entirely.  

      • 36thchamber

        Posting here is probably “clouding my karma” whatever that means (I don’t ever remember mentioning anything about clouding karma, but perhaps it came through, tangentially anyway). And nice translation, although I don’t chant “ohm”.

        The fact is, the need to “take a stand” is the byproduct of an ego that is scared and/or full of desires that aren’t being met. The fact remains, for example, that the “1 percent” are only the “1 percent” because the other 99-percent continue to feed into the illusion that paper money is actual wealth. The 1-percent only have any kind of power because we give them that power. The second you realize you can take that power back by not valuing the same things the 1-percent value, that’s the biggest stand one can take. You no longer are a slave to the 1-percent because you don’t feed into the illusion. I don’t value their money beyond what it takes for me to feed myself and my family, and that’s only out of necessity. If the other 99-percent stopped pretending paper money was any source of power, it would cease to be.  

        And, yes, anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a zealot. It’s not that difficult to see how. Not everyone does become a zealot, but the second you create an “us vs them” dichotomy, you are in danger of minimizing the humanity of whoever “them” are.

        • chubby

          exactly, once you go down the path of eliminating the enemy within, a whole new can of worms opens, for myself personally, I know that the so called 99 percent are gonna have to take this path to its very end, mainly because they cannot conceive of any other way than replacing one armed regime with another, Ive learned the hard way, some dont live to tell it. but I hear ya, “new acts have new reflections” may they walk away from the trap laid for them soon…..peace

        • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

          So where does demonizing the “tea party” come into your dialectic on avoiding us vs. them dichotomies?  ”It’s not right to hurt others, but it is also not right to not be able to defend one’s self”. -Bodhidharma 

          The purpose of the article was that the “spiritual bypass” is antithetical to walking your talk.  You are welcome to believe whatever you want but perhaps you should try to reflect on the message in the article rather than say letting your “ego” get involved and feel the need to downplay a divergent perspective of a buddhist who is willing to speak out and take action.  Also no one is talking about OWS.  The article talks about 9/11 Truth.  What is your position on 9/11 Truth as self avowed 10 year zen practitioner?  ”too many people care about stupid shit”.  I’m curious, with this statement in mind, let’s say you were living in oh I dunno, Tibet.  The Chinese government have their so far up your ass it feels like you’ve mastered levitation.  What action might be required for them to acquire liberation from their oppressors?  At what point do they fight for their liberation and rights?  WWBD?  Curious if the solution to all of the world’s problems is to turn the other cheek and again hope for freedom in the afterlife. 

          By The Way I was being a bit facetious when I said you were a spiritual coward, I’m trying out new material and paying homage to the rants of some of my favorite agents of change.  Don’t mind me.  You are free to do what you want and yes I read your posts, I don’t think you read the article though as you seem to have avoided the message of the article entirely.

          Peace be unto you and your contradictions.

          • chubby

             defend can have multiple meanings, not just biased ones

      • 36thchamber

        Also, I hate the Tea Party. I think that came through pretty clearly in the post, although I didn’t outright say it in those terms. Did you actually read the post or did you just use it as a tool to indulge your own self-righteous anger?

        • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

          Again why is it that you are preaching we have to move beyond “us vs. them dichotomies” and then you throw barbs like this and not expected to be labeled a hypocrite?

          • chubby

            one can hate something without physically trying to kill it,  some even believe you can extinguish that hate at its root in yourself so that it wont touch you, a difficult thing

          • 36thchamber

            Because I never denied that I make “us vs. them” dichotomies myself. I have to move beyond them just like everyone else. While it’s probably too strong of word to say that I “hate” the Tea Party, they do fill me with a certain fear and loathing, but that’s just the ego holding on to itself. I’m not going around pretending to be enlightened, despite what you seem to believe. I have faults like anyone else.

            Beyond that, certain dichotomies are useful for pragmatic purposes. The difference between food and poison, for example. The tricky part is identifying which dichotomies directly cause suffering and which really don’t.  

      • Jin The Ninja

        Damn Cameron, reading your responses and taking into account you posted this article (which was thoroughly good) -maybe i owe you an apology and that i had the wrong idea about you…regardless i owe you a response on a different page, but thanks for this- and i completely agree with your above post.

        • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

          Thanks Jin.  I appreciate your kind words and appreciate everyone on the boards.  I’ve been very upset about SB 1867, it’s affecting my attitude.  I prompt in the spirit of Socrates.  I learn continually from everyone on here and am thankful for their prompts as well.  We are at the event horizon it seems, I hope we can all begin speaking out about whatever it is we believe often and loud enough for even the most fluoridated mind to be shaken out of HD Rem @ 1080p.  KYOSAKU TIME FOLKS.  WHACK! WAKE UP! WHACK! WHACK! WHACK! WAKE UP! DO NOT SLEEP!    Thanks again and best wishes.

    • Drlechter

      I have learned much from Buddhism and probably learned very little compared to what could be gotten, but it is also important to remember Buddhism is first and foremost a religion, and like all the religions I have run into, is primarily a means of maintaining disparity.

      The History of Tibet bears this out: http://www.michaelparenti.org/Tibet.html

      • Jin The Ninja

        tibetan buddhism is simply one permutation of buddhism.

        not to defend buddhism’s hierarchichal institutional practices or assert it’s practices do not prove to be problematic, but national and cultural context have a deep importance in the reading of buddhist history.

        i like michael parenti, many of his critiques are philosophically aligned with my own- but do not use an article regarding tibet to colour the entire history of buddhism in east asia.

  • 36thchamber

    I disagree with the posts so far. I’ve been studying Buddhism for almost a decade (mostly Zen) and I think a small degree of apathy is really promoted within the teachings. The reason being the idea of karma. Everytime I “do” something, I create a possibly infinite series of effects. Some of those effects will be of the kind that are generally regarded as “good” others will be of the kind that are generally regarded as “bad.” The problem is I can’t control those effects.

    The “middle way” is knowing when it’s appropriate to “do” something and knowing when it’s appropriate to be passive. The bigger the event I “do” is (e.g. assassinating a president), the bigger and more convoluted my karma.

    This isn’t to say Buddhism promotes ANTIpathy. There’s a big difference. If I have an opportunity to directly save a life or end someone’s suffering in some manner, I should probably do so. However, I shouldn’t go out of my way to do so. For example, let’s say I go out of my way to safe some starving children somewhere in Africa, and I go out of my way to provide them with education on safe sexual practices and so on. Well, that seems like a “good” deed, but I’ve just created a whole series of effects which I have no control over. What if one of the kids I save and taught to keep himself sexually safe ends up becoming a warlord? And because I taught him safe sex, he now survives much longer than any of his adversaries, he continues to accumulate power until he leaves an entire region in ruins?

    The point, again, is that what seemed like a good deed, really led to a lot of suffering. And things like this happen fairly regularly.

    The idea is that most of the suffering is caused by people “doing” things. Trying to make money for example. Or think about the Tea Party, they truly and honestly believe they are doing the “right” thing and are attempting to save the country. But in their efforts are really making things a lot worse, probably, at least for the time being.

    Which brings up another problem: How do I know I’m right? How do I know I’m really the one who is doing the “right” and “good” thing? Of course I think I’m doing the right thing, that’s why I’m doing it. But the Ku Klux Klan thought they were doing the right thing, convinced of it actually, and really, they probably weren’t.

    Of course, examples like Martin Luther King are the counter point. He thought he was doing the right thing, and for the most part he did. However, there is still a lot of hate and anger in this country because of things like the civil rights movement, and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi. So while it was probably best that the civil rights movement took place, we are still suffering the “karma” of that event, and not all of it is good karma.  Perhaps, to use a Buddhist perspective, he was a Bodhisattva, though, which most of us are not.

    I know this has been a long-winded rant, but it’s up to each person to decide on their own their level of participation. If a person has studied Buddhism fairly thoroughly and doesn’t necessarily agree with becoming more “active” in certain movements because that person doesn’t want to take on that karma, he or she shouldn’t have to. And they shouldn’t be made to feel like they have to.

    To deny the “apathetic” impulse in Buddhism is to ignore the long line of hermits and monastic reclusism throughout Buddhist history.

    If one, on the other hand, wants to take that risk, then they are also welcome to. There is also a long history of those “active” or “engaged” Buddhist practitioners.

    Personally, I always try to find the “middle way.” I support a lot of movements, but I don’t go out of my way to “lead” or physically participate. This may make me a coward in some people’s eyes and that’s fine. I’m not looking for validation. But I think the problem is that too many people care too much about stupid shit. And the way to combat zealots is not to become a zealot in return.

  • Camron Wiltshire

    I’m sorry but you sound completely childish here.  The “spiritual bypass” of well who am I to know what is right or how am I to know that my good deed won’t cause bad things down the line.  What a bunch of solipsistic nonsense.  Give me a break.  So anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a “zealot” and should recuse themselves of any participation in affecting anything for fear of “bad karma”.  

    How do you know writing such a bland, banal and philosophically impotent blog post isn’t clouding your karma right now?  Perhaps the future MLK is reading right now but because he is not yet out of the metaphysical jungle and has no sword of reason to slash through such an expanse he will read your post and think to himself, yeah I was gonna devote my life to truth, justice, and liberty but I may offend someone down the line and I don’t want that on my karmic permanent record.  Excuse me I just need to throw up a bit (BULLSHIIIITTTTT)  Sorry when I puke I tend to curse….

    I mean really dude? really?  Let’s review your words here; “and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi.”  Do you masturbate to Mother Jones magazines?  Where are you getting any of this?  Hey Super Buddhist, do you have any friends who are in anyway involved in the Tea Party?  Perhaps they are buddha beings too? Or does that crimp your no-self’s selflessness?

    I translated your post.  Here you go.  Oh heaven! I’m not actually in complete control, guess I will just stay in my head!  It’s safe there! I can rationalize anything that should alarm me!  Let’s all just retreat to the woods and chant ohm.  That’ll show em!  

    Way to miss the point entirely.  

  • Camron Wiltshire

    I’m sorry but you sound completely childish here.  The “spiritual bypass” of well who am I to know what is right or how am I to know that my good deed won’t cause bad things down the line.  What a bunch of solipsistic nonsense.  Give me a break.  So anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a “zealot” and should recuse themselves of any participation in affecting anything for fear of “bad karma”.  

    How do you know writing such a bland, banal and philosophically impotent blog post isn’t clouding your karma right now?  Perhaps the future MLK is reading right now but because he is not yet out of the metaphysical jungle and has no sword of reason to slash through such an expanse he will read your post and think to himself, yeah I was gonna devote my life to truth, justice, and liberty but I may offend someone down the line and I don’t want that on my karmic permanent record.  Excuse me I just need to throw up a bit (BULLSHIIIITTTTT)  Sorry when I puke I tend to curse….

    I mean really dude? really?  Let’s review your words here; “and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi.”  Do you masturbate to Mother Jones magazines?  Where are you getting any of this?  Hey Super Buddhist, do you have any friends who are in anyway involved in the Tea Party?  Perhaps they are buddha beings too? Or does that crimp your no-self’s selflessness?

    I translated your post.  Here you go.  Oh heaven! I’m not actually in complete control, guess I will just stay in my head!  It’s safe there! I can rationalize anything that should alarm me!  Let’s all just retreat to the woods and chant ohm.  That’ll show em!  

    Way to miss the point entirely.  

  • Camron Wiltshire

    I’m sorry but you sound completely childish here.  The “spiritual bypass” of well who am I to know what is right or how am I to know that my good deed won’t cause bad things down the line.  What a bunch of solipsistic nonsense.  Give me a break.  So anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a “zealot” and should recuse themselves of any participation in affecting anything for fear of “bad karma”.  

    How do you know writing such a bland, banal and philosophically impotent blog post isn’t clouding your karma right now?  Perhaps the future MLK is reading right now but because he is not yet out of the metaphysical jungle and has no sword of reason to slash through such an expanse he will read your post and think to himself, yeah I was gonna devote my life to truth, justice, and liberty but I may offend someone down the line and I don’t want that on my karmic permanent record.  Excuse me I just need to throw up a bit (BULLSHIIIITTTTT)  Sorry when I puke I tend to curse….

    I mean really dude? really?  Let’s review your words here; “and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi.”  Do you masturbate to Mother Jones magazines?  Where are you getting any of this?  Hey Super Buddhist, do you have any friends who are in anyway involved in the Tea Party?  Perhaps they are buddha beings too? Or does that crimp your no-self’s selflessness?

    I translated your post.  Here you go.  Oh heaven! I’m not actually in complete control, guess I will just stay in my head!  It’s safe there! I can rationalize anything that should alarm me!  Let’s all just retreat to the woods and chant ohm.  That’ll show em!  

    Way to miss the point entirely.  

  • Camron Wiltshire

    I’m sorry but you sound completely childish here.  The “spiritual bypass” of well who am I to know what is right or how am I to know that my good deed won’t cause bad things down the line.  What a bunch of solipsistic nonsense.  Give me a break.  So anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a “zealot” and should recuse themselves of any participation in affecting anything for fear of “bad karma”.  

    How do you know writing such a bland, banal and philosophically impotent blog post isn’t clouding your karma right now?  Perhaps the future MLK is reading right now but because he is not yet out of the metaphysical jungle and has no sword of reason to slash through such an expanse he will read your post and think to himself, yeah I was gonna devote my life to truth, justice, and liberty but I may offend someone down the line and I don’t want that on my karmic permanent record.  Excuse me I just need to throw up a bit (BULLSHIIIITTTTT)  Sorry when I puke I tend to curse….

    I mean really dude? really?  Let’s review your words here; “and those people who are angry and hateful are now responsible for things like the Tea Party, the GOP and the entire state of Mississippi.”  Do you masturbate to Mother Jones magazines?  Where are you getting any of this?  Hey Super Buddhist, do you have any friends who are in anyway involved in the Tea Party?  Perhaps they are buddha beings too? Or does that crimp your no-self’s selflessness?

    I translated your post.  Here you go.  Oh heaven! I’m not actually in complete control, guess I will just stay in my head!  It’s safe there! I can rationalize anything that should alarm me!  Let’s all just retreat to the woods and chant ohm.  That’ll show em!  

    Way to miss the point entirely.  

  • Camron Wiltshire

    I agree with Matthew’s opening statement.  Buddhists should smoke Buddha, Eat Jesus, and Shit Satan.  Yamaoka Tesshu was such a a man.  A Young man in Tiananmen square, a nun who conflagrates to end war.  Theirs is a passionate knowledge of the reality of immortality.  As for trolls who find it clever to demonize opposition for whatever “reason”, you are making a shitty karmic reality sandwich for yourself after all.  Let that juicy turd just run right down your cheeks you spiritual coward. WUTANG!

  • Camron Wiltshire

    I am available for Children’s parties…

  • 36thchamber

    Posting here is probably “clouding my karma” whatever that means (I don’t ever remember mentioning anything about clouding karma, but perhaps it came through, tangentially anyway). And nice translation, although I don’t chant “ohm”.

    The fact is, the need to “take a stand” is the byproduct of an ego that is scared and/or full of desires that aren’t being met. The fact remains, for example, that the “1 percent” are only the “1 percent” because the other 99-percent continue to feed into the illusion that paper money is actual wealth. The 1-percent only have any kind of power because we give them that power. The second you realize you can take that power back by not valuing the same things the 1-percent value, that’s the biggest stand one can take. You no longer are a slave to the 1-percent because you don’t feed into the illusion. I don’t value their money beyond what it takes for me to feed myself and my family, and that’s only out of necessity. If the other 99-percent stopped pretending paper money was any source of power, it would cease to be.  

    And, yes, anyone who takes a stand is in danger of becoming a zealot. It’s not that difficult to see how. Not everyone does become a zealot, but the second you create an “us vs them” dichotomy, you are in danger of minimizing the humanity of whoever “them” are.

  • 36thchamber

    Also, I hate the Tea Party. I think that came through pretty clearly in the post, although I didn’t outright say it in those terms. Did you actually read the post or did you just use it as a tool to indulge your own self-righteous anger?

  • chubby

    exactly, once you go down the path of eliminating the enemy within, a whole new can of worms opens, for myself personally, I know that the so called 99 percent are gonna have to take this path to its very end, mainly because they cannot conceive of any other way than replacing one armed regime with another, Ive learned the hard way, some dont live to tell it. but I hear ya, “new acts have new reflections” may they walk away from the trap laid for them soon…..peace

  • Camron Wiltshire

    So where does demonizing the “tea party” come into your dialectic on avoiding us vs. them dichotomies?  ”It’s not right to hurt others, but it is also not right to not be able to defend one’s self”. -Bodhidharma 

    The purpose of the article was that the “spiritual bypass” is antithetical to walking your talk.  You are welcome to believe whatever you want but perhaps you should try to reflect on the message in the article rather than say letting your “ego” get involved and feel the need to downplay a divergent perspective of a buddhist who is willing to speak out and take action.  Also no one is talking about OWS.  The article talks about 9/11 Truth.  What is your position on 9/11 Truth as self avowed 10 year zen practitioner?  ”too many people care about stupid shit”.  I’m curious, with this statement in mind, let’s say you were living in oh I dunno, Tibet.  The Chinese government have their so far up your ass it feels like you’ve mastered levitation.  What action might be required for them to acquire liberation from their oppressors?  At what point do they fight for their liberation and rights?  WWBD?  Curious if the solution to all of the world’s problems is to turn the other cheek and again hope for freedom in the afterlife. 

    By The Way I was being a bit facetious when I said you were a spiritual coward, I’m trying out new material and paying homage to the rants of some of my favorite agents of change.  Don’t mind me.  You are free to do what you want and yes I read your posts, I don’t think you read the article though as you seem to have avoided the message of the article entirely.

    Peace be unto you and your contradictions.

  • Camron Wiltshire

    Again why is it that you are preaching we have to move beyond “us vs. them dichotomies” and then you throw barbs like this and not expected to be labeled a hypocrite?

  • chubby

     defend can have multiple meanings, not just biased ones

  • chubby

    one can hate something without physically trying to kill it,  some even believe you can extinguish that hate at its root in yourself so that it wont touch you, a difficult thing

  • 36thchamber

    Because I never denied that I make “us vs. them” dichotomies myself. I have to move beyond them just like everyone else. While it’s probably too strong of word to say that I “hate” the Tea Party, they do fill me with a certain fear and loathing, but that’s just the ego holding on to itself. I’m not going around pretending to be enlightened, despite what you seem to believe. I have faults like anyone else.

    Beyond that, certain dichotomies are useful for pragmatic purposes. The difference between food and poison, for example. The tricky part is identifying which dichotomies directly cause suffering and which really don’t.  

  • Jin 天

    Damn Cameron, reading your responses and taking into account you posted this article (which was thoroughly good) -maybe i owe you an apology and that i had the wrong idea about you…regardless i owe you a response on a different page, but thanks for this- and i completely agree with your above post.

  • chubby

     erudite jacking off is nothing new neither is it righteousness, and some us know it when we see it, alot of it on this site, that is all.

    • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

      You mean like “Whack! Wake Up! Whack! Whack! Whack! Wake Up!?? ;)  So interestingly enough in regards to 9/11 and the Anti Dote for the Poison Pill of HD inspired state sponsored non lucid dreaming.  What shall we do to spread the medicine?  Curious.

      • chubby

        well, I only speak for my own self, as a practicing ascetic type, one can only try to lead by example, the life one wishes to attain, despite every social conditioning and obstacle. it is true that the people are in a deep sleep, but it is not so much just awakening them, but changing their heart, who can change the hearts of men? to proselytize or just have a conversation, to at least try to convince a person to change their ways, pointing out the discipline involved (to me discipline being not harsh routines but facing anything and everything with serenity),  usually invokes harsh responses, except from those who have really tried to change in their heart and mind and spirit. I myself see the beginnings of any kind of new society or whatever you would call it beginning with such types, who are very very few in number, one could say a remnant ;) Id include true buddhist types amongst these. the time is coming, but timing and patience is needed, because (this is my own opinion again) death seems the only thing that can even nudge people to any sort of action, much less reflection. I wish it were different, but it would not be like this if the people did not want it like this.

        • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Camron Wiltshire

          Yes I agree. Death is a stark reminder to remember who we are and that the same fate awaits all of us in time.   I’m curious if the bloggers and commenters/readers  on this site would be interested in activating different means to shift memes.  For example we are probably all familiar with the concept of exponential growth.  What if we were boil down any concept into it’s key components, say for instance.  Project Red Pill: (9/11 Truth) or (How the Fed Works) or (Why Tv is making you stupid etc ;)

          Then we set about anonymous style asking for folks to share our media and keep independent statistics on how many hits we are receiving (google tampers with many video hit counts, search engine ranks etc)  Then feed back into that system how quickly that idea is spreading by posting the growth of the memes progress, numbers and locations advocating that each person simply ensure the message is spread to their own networks and find a way to document and celebrate the meme stream going deluge.  Provide tests on the material in question, forums for discussion and offline gatherings around these themes.  It’s a brainstorm but you gotta start somewhere.   

          Sidestepping the controls.  Proving that the “99%’s” (Average human voice) voice can be heard despite the best attempts at muddying the water from Cointelpro like Pentagon schemes.  

          It seems to me there are creative solutions, perhaps necessity will birth the inventions to remove the blight of programmed limits, apathy, and servitude to the “elite”.

          Down with the Fed, Up with the People.

          Thank you for your response :)

          • chubby

             thanks for your response as well. there was a time I studied on the leaders of history and those that lead mean today, from genghis khan to richard marcinko, including the indigenous people of the americas, the way they led, how they set up their commands, etc. perhaps in preparation for a conflict, maybe just curiosity, I was angry beyond words, a decade ago, I nearly joined the military, yet fate, karma, infinity, god, what have you, stopped me cold in my tracks. the abstract crept into my life and perhaps the redundancy of a whole human existence led me to seek something else. perhaps hoping for the best of men to emerge is a pipe dream, almost as much as hoping for a spontaneous uprising. yet realistically, any type of rebel leader would quickly be sold out to the 1 %, who have appealed relentlessly to our deepest desires, besides they have enough zealots to run their militaristic state and armies, to destroy all terrorists whomever they may choose them to be, including their own. that truth has led me to search and search, and the answers are very difficult, and are not what we want to hear. I completely understand the need for action and “spreading the word” but I am a pragmatic in these matters and can only offer this, whatever clothes you have, do not throw them away, store them and keep them, prepare for a life without electricity, start a library on life without modern conveniences (the foxfire books are one I can think of off the top of my head), books on gardening, with the seeds of course. and tools, high carbon steel (swedish steel is good), water filtration and knowledge of the naturally occurring springs that are left. many survival forums have great ideas on such matters, yet for myself, being a pacifist, I only purchase what will further life, not end it. with that, peace be unto you in these last days of the unfettered sharing of knowledge.

          • chubby

            as for the 1% a time will come when they get what they want (everything), and being the treacherous backstabbers that they are, will betray one another. then…..upheaval

  • chubby

     erudite jacking off is nothing new neither is it righteousness, and some us know it when we see it, alot of it on this site, that is all.

  • Natas

    Buddha did say that “suffering (dukkha) is inherent in all compounded things.”

    Dukkha is a term that can be translated as suffering, dissatisfaction, unease, anguish or with any other word which suggests that things aren’t quite right. The Sanskrit term originally had the meaning of a “rusted axle” on a cart – a wheel that wouldn’t turn.

    “Compounded things” refers to al mental phenomena – the forms, feelings, perceptions, thought formations, and consciousness that we consider to be our “mind.” If we study mental phenomena carefully (through meditation), we will see that every mental experience is compounded – it breaks into smaller and smaller parts.

    This is part of what makes compounded things unsatisfactory.

    Buddha also said that all compounded things are “impermanent” (perhaps this is the origin of the word “chaos”) and also lack any essential nature (self or soul).

    The Buddha encouraged us to strive with diligence because when we experience the truth of our lives – that everything is impermanent, lacks an essential nature, and is marked with dissatisfaction – then we gain the great freedom of enlightenment.

  • Natas

    Buddha did say that “suffering (dukkha) is inherent in all compounded things.”

    Dukkha is a term that can be translated as suffering, dissatisfaction, unease, anguish or with any other word which suggests that things aren’t quite right. The Sanskrit term originally had the meaning of a “rusted axle” on a cart – a wheel that wouldn’t turn.

    “Compounded things” refers to al mental phenomena – the forms, feelings, perceptions, thought formations, and consciousness that we consider to be our “mind.” If we study mental phenomena carefully (through meditation), we will see that every mental experience is compounded – it breaks into smaller and smaller parts.

    This is part of what makes compounded things unsatisfactory.

    Buddha also said that all compounded things are “impermanent” (perhaps this is the origin of the word “chaos”) and also lack any essential nature (self or soul).

    The Buddha encouraged us to strive with diligence because when we experience the truth of our lives – that everything is impermanent, lacks an essential nature, and is marked with dissatisfaction – then we gain the great freedom of enlightenment.

  • Oneloveinus

    The incredible thing is, is that the person who wrote down what the Buddha said or thought could never ever have possibly known what the Buddha was actually saying or thinking. Just as we cannot get in the minds of each other no matter how far we go, ultimately we are not them thinking their thoughts at that time. We can agree though, but only to a certain degree what is “good” and what is “bad.” But the ultimate step would be to dissolve the dichotomy all together. And just see as is, all things interacting as a whole. Which is probably just a piece of a larger whole. But that is infinity, that there always is.

    • Oneloveinus

      and that we have been given the ability to openly interact with it as far as we think we possibly could. If you have not been able to move a chair yet with just the power of your thought to do so, you just haven’t reached that zenith yet..infinity is wrought with infinite possibilities with no definable laws except the ones we think we know at a time we think exists. All knowledge exists and all knowledge cannot pass away.

  • Oneloveinus

    The incredible thing is, is that the person who wrote down what the Buddha said or thought could never ever have possibly known what the Buddha was actually saying or thinking. Just as we cannot get in the minds of each other no matter how far we go, ultimately we are not them thinking their thoughts at that time. We can agree though, but only to a certain degree what is “good” and what is “bad.” But the ultimate step would be to dissolve the dichotomy all together. And just see as is, all things interacting as a whole. Which is probably just a piece of a larger whole. But that is infinity, that there always is.

  • Oneloveinus

    and that we have been given the ability to openly interact with it as far as we think we possibly could. If you have not been able to move a chair yet with just the power of your thought to do so, you just haven’t reached that zenith yet..infinity is wrought with infinite possibilities with no definable laws except the ones we think we know at a time we think exists. All knowledge exists and all knowledge cannot pass away.

  • Camron Wiltshire

    Thanks Jin.  I appreciate your kind words and appreciate everyone on the boards.  I’ve been very upset about SB 1867, it’s affecting my attitude.  I prompt in the spirit of Socrates.  I learn continually from everyone on here and am thankful for their prompts as well.  We are at the event horizon it seems, I hope we can all begin speaking out about whatever it is we believe often and loud enough for even the most fluoridated mind to be shaken out of HD Rem @ 1080p.  KYOSAKU TIME FOLKS.  WHACK! WAKE UP! WHACK! WHACK! WHACK! WAKE UP! DO NOT SLEEP!    Thanks again and best wishes.

  • Camron Wiltshire

    You mean like “Whack! Wake Up! Whack! Whack! Whack! Wake Up!?? ;)  So interestingly enough in regards to 9/11 and the Anti Dote for the Poison Pill of HD inspired state sponsored non lucid dreaming.  What shall we do to spread the medicine?  Curious.

  • chubby

    well, I only speak for my own self, as a practicing ascetic type, one can only try to lead by example, the life one wishes to attain, despite every social conditioning and obstacle. it is true that the people are in a deep sleep, but it is not so much just awakening them, but changing their heart, who can change the hearts of men? to proselytize or just have a conversation, to at least try to convince a person to change their ways, pointing out the discipline involved (to me discipline being not harsh routines but facing anything and everything with serenity),  usually invokes harsh responses, except from those who have really tried to change in their heart and mind and spirit. I myself see the beginnings of any kind of new society or whatever you would call it beginning with such types, who are very very few in number, one could say a remnant ;) Id include true buddhist types amongst these. the time is coming, but timing and patience is needed, because (this is my own opinion again) death seems the only thing that can even nudge people to any sort of action, much less reflection. I wish it were different, but it would not be like this if the people did not want it like this.

  • Camron Wiltshire

    Yes I agree. Death is a stark reminder to remember who we are and that the same fate awaits all of us in time.   I’m curious if the bloggers and commenters/readers  on this site would be interested in activating different means to shift memes.  For example we are probably all familiar with the concept of exponential growth.  What if we were boil down any concept into it’s key components, say for instance.  Project Red Pill: (9/11 Truth) or (How the Fed Works) or (Why Tv is making you stupid etc ;)

    Then we set about anonymous style asking for folks to share our media and keep independent statistics on how many hits we are receiving (google tampers with many video hit counts, search engine ranks etc)  Then feed back into that system how quickly that idea is spreading by posting the growth of the memes progress, numbers and locations advocating that each person simply ensure the message is spread to their own networks and find a way to document and celebrate the meme stream going deluge.  Provide tests on the material in question, forums for discussion and offline gatherings around these themes.  It’s a brainstorm but you gotta start somewhere.   

    Sidestepping the controls.  Proving that the “99%’s” (Average human voice) voice can be heard despite the best attempts at muddying the water from Cointelpro like Pentagon schemes.  

    It seems to me there are creative solutions, perhaps necessity will birth the inventions to remove the blight of programmed limits, apathy, and servitude to the “elite”.

    Down with the Fed, Up with the People.

    Thank you for your response :)

  • chubby

     thanks for your response as well. there was a time I studied on the leaders of history and those that lead mean today, from genghis khan to richard marcinko, including the indigenous people of the americas, the way they led, how they set up their commands, etc. perhaps in preparation for a conflict, maybe just curiosity, I was angry beyond words, a decade ago, I nearly joined the military, yet fate, karma, infinity, god, what have you, stopped me cold in my tracks. the abstract crept into my life and perhaps the redundancy of a whole human existence led me to seek something else. perhaps hoping for the best of men to emerge is a pipe dream, almost as much as hoping for a spontaneous uprising. yet realistically, any type of rebel leader would quickly be sold out to the 1 %, who have appealed relentlessly to our deepest desires, besides they have enough zealots to run their militaristic state and armies, to destroy all terrorists whomever they may choose them to be, including their own. that truth has led me to search and search, and the answers are very difficult, and are not what we want to hear. I completely understand the need for action and “spreading the word” but I am a pragmatic in these matters and can only offer this, whatever clothes you have, do not throw them away, store them and keep them, prepare for a life without electricity, start a library on life without modern conveniences (the foxfire books are one I can think of off the top of my head), books on gardening, with the seeds of course. and tools, high carbon steel (swedish steel is good), water filtration and knowledge of the naturally occurring springs that are left. many survival forums have great ideas on such matters, yet for myself, being a pacifist, I only purchase what will further life, not end it. with that, peace be unto you in these last days of the unfettered sharing of knowledge.

  • chubby

    as for the 1% a time will come when they get what they want (everything), and being the treacherous backstabbers that they are, will betray one another. then…..upheaval

  • Drlechter

    I have learned much from Buddhism and probably learned very little compared to what could be gotten, but it is also important to remember Buddhism is first and foremost a religion, and like all the religions I have run into, is primarily a means of maintaining disparity.

    The History of Tibet bears this out: http://www.michaelparenti.org/Tibet.html

  • Jin (仁)

    tibetan buddhism has a ‘feudal’ history, there is no question; however in that overly redacted reading of it (which is a very old article) it lacks the communitarian and multi faceted context of the distinct sectarian and bon-shamanist history.

    and tibetan buddhism is simply ONE permutation of buddhism.

    this isn’t to defend buddhism’s institutional hierarchies or to say there are no aspects in buddhist (cultural and religious) practice that are not problematic, but michael parenti is by no means a serious asia scholar, nor a buddhist scholar, what he lacks in substance he makes up for in vehemence