While I try and avoid social media, I found myself wondering into a Buddhist center’s feed and there in one of their memes was a negative reply. The meme showed leaders of several different religions and below it read, “we only have on earth. It is our home, so practice tolerance.” This message triggered a random stranger who posted a reply:

You cannot tolerate those seeking to enslave others like what is happening now. Think about that….

Random internet troll

I found the quote above annoying. I went to the author’s feed and found they aren’t speaking of legitimate problems, but anger over vaccinations. They were a victim of conspiracy story and fake news. However, I wanted to respond to their point, as many mundane people think exactly like this.

My Response

When I was a practicing buddhist I had a lama who once taught a class on compassion and love – even for the enemy. a visitor in the audience, angry non-buddhist, shouted, “oh yeah? what would you do if someone came here and started killing your friends and family in this place? would you just love them?” The buddhist teacher simply asked, “do you love your mother?” “Yeah,” he said, “what’s that got to do with this?” “What would you do if you came home and found your mother out of her mind, waiving a knife and trying to hurt others? Would your first reaction be to kill her? Or would you try and stop her with the least amount of violence possible?” The man replied that this was different, as it was about his mother and not some killer, but that he would restrain her. “You see,” said the lama, “I strive to see all beings as my mother.” you may not agree with it, but that is a Buddhist view right there. I have to admire it, as it’s consistent and hard core. It is hard for me to have compassion on bigots, hate mongers and evil doers. But I admire the attempt.

Others would say, without violent correction the world would be in disorder. But to a Buddhist perspective, this world is not what we think it is, because we don’t see it clearly. We think “kill the evil and it goes away.” To the buddhist, the act of killing has a karmic return requiring people to kill more (more evil.). As one buddhist once asked, “what war has ended all wars? WWII? but then came Korea. Vietnam. Iraq…” “But those are different conflicts,” say naysayers. But to the buddhist they are products of karma, and not distinctly separate things – one chaining to the actions of another.  

Does that mean one doesn’t act? I think most Buddhist’s agree they need to act, but the actions must be done with right intention. Many a buddhist has laid down their life to try and stop a war, but avoided what they view as unnecessary killing.

Regarding this Person

The commenter was not talking about war, but about vaccination – which he thought was making slaves of people. The problem with this line of thinking is that it’s carnal. There’s a lack of spiritual ethic. As one relates to anger, they must let go of their expansive nature. One becomes more microscopic. The view narrows, the anger intensifies and what is gained? Only more corrosive thought patterns.

Life is suffering, in many ways. There is a way out of suffering. As we engage in an expansive way of thinking, we let go of the negative hold of the microscopic. We begin to touch our true natures and find everlasting peace. It doesn’t matter if you are enslaved in a cage, or in your own fears, the result is the same. The antidote to fear is love.

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