Our faith and everyday life
I had an interesting question about my blog via email. It asked why my Blog is not just about Buddhism, why I cover other issues?
If I joined a monastic community, then I could exclusively concentrate on the spiritual aspects. However I live in the regular world, therefore everyday issues pop up. I have friends who are Buddhist, Catholic, Baptist, Muslim, Taoist, Wicca, follow Native American Spiritual practices, and many other paths. We all share a common challenge, in how to live in today’s secular world, while following the spiritual or moral practices we profess to believe in. My blog is about being a Western Buddhist in a secular world, and how I use the knowledge I gain from being a Buddhist in my approach to life. Through WordPress, I have come to learn about how others on different paths, face their challenges, some of which helps to give me answers. To quote a wise man who influenced modern development, Socrates stated “I know that I know nothing”. However there are many wiser people out there, who I can learn from.
By sharing the how to’s, as I call them, we can become better people, regardless of the faith we profess to follow. If we share our life’s journey, others may see something that helps them in their quest to be a better person. One of the common goals, to use a common Buddhist statement, is we wish to avoid suffering, and to avoid making others suffer through our actions. My post yesterday, about “Living according to your Beliefs” brought offer a comment from a young lady, about her way of celebrating a Thanksgiving this year. She prepared a meal for 30 homeless people and distributed it in the area she works. She did this according to her Roman Catholic beliefs, and found it very fulfilling to do this.
To sum it up I will refer you to a book, that I am reading that does a much better job, of explaining cooperation between faiths. “Toward a True Kinship of Faith; How the World’s Religions Can Come Together” by the Dalai Lama. There is an evolving science that has found the more we share what we have in common between our faiths, the less the differences matter. One of the best ways to accept someone is to understand, their belief system. By standing shoulder to shoulder, with people of different faiths, working and sharing ideas to alleviate suffering in this world. There is a strong connection between knowledge about, attitude of, and our behavior toward other faiths.
So the short form answer, is by sharing my travels through life, and hearing about others from different faiths, ethnicity, generations, nationalities, economic status, we can all learn about each other. As we acquire this knowledge, we find there really isn’t much difference between all of us.
With Metta, and gratitude to all of you as my teachers.