A Western Buddhist's Travels

Sightseeing & detours on the path of enlightenment

Archive for the month “August, 2011”

U.N.E.S.C.O.

Today’s entry is inspired by: http://www.turningforward.org/documents/Tho-Buddhismandconflictresolution.pdf  The author Ha Vinh Tho presents an  excellent thoughtful article on peace, based on Buddhist principles. I recommend reading it, as I will give you a brief review.

UNESCO’s mission is to contribute to the building of peace, the eradication of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, the sciences, culture, communication and information.

The charter that defines UNESCO opens with “Since wars begin in the human mind, it is in the mind that peace must be defended and constructed.”

If we find peace in our own minds, then we shall have peace with our brothers and sisters. Once we have peace with our brothers and sisters, then peace with all mankind is possible. Once peace among men is achieved, then surely we will extend this peace to all living beings.

 

 

A small must read

I just finished a little booklet called The Basic Purpose of Following the Buddha by Venerable Yin Shun. It is printed by H.K. Buddhist Book Distributor. I am thankful to the International Buddhist Society Temple in Richmond for making this available to me. It covers such topics as the meaning of existence, where humans fit in the order of the universe, proceeds to cover the reasons why we should heed the Buddha’s message, winding up with the benefits of following this path. It is filled with everyday world examples, and is written in a clear concise format. It also gives a basic description of the Buddhist world view, contrasted to the major religious practices of the world. Over the next few days, I will be rereading and contemplating this book.

Avoiding a karmic connection

I was talking with a friend who is looking online for a girlfriend. He was commenting on the number of ladies who have a laundry list of what they want from a guy. They want him to be kind, honest, accepting of her past, loyal etc. They expect the man to make them smile, or make them happy. I commented that expecting anyone else to make us smile or happy is not going to work. We can ask for someone with a compatible sense of humor, or a positive outlook on life. If we are happy with ourselves, then it is easier to accept others, and to be happy with them. When we are able to accept and enjoy what life gives us, then it is easier to accept and enjoy the shared experience with someone else. Of course these requests he mentioned the ladies make, may mean what I just said as he has been looking for a lady from China, and some may not have more than a basic conversational level of English. I told him that looking for a specific nationality, limits who I could meet, presupposes that one nationality would give me the best chance to find a compatible lady. I told him that looking for a lady who has a belief system with the same core values and a similar view of life would be more effective. After more discussion, I have put off answering a few more of his questions. I told him that it sounds more like he is looking for a personal servant/housekeeper or traditional Asian wife. I believe in a marriage being of two equals, who share a relationship, which includes the chores, duties, and obligations. If he finds a lady who is willing to give up what makes her special, and assume less of a role then she should enjoy, that is between the two of them, however I will not help him, for if I do I may be responsible for what happens. I will ask others, who are wiser than me, if perhaps I am being judgemental.

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