I bit my tongue as I read through a few recent discussions around here - specifically the ones dealing with world issues. I decided that instead of derailing those discussions I would vent in a separate thread. Who knows? Perhaps some share my view.
Look, I'm all for peace on earth. I would love to see everyone have freedom and be happy. There are some horrible things going on in the world and I wish that none of them were happening. I see how certain governments and policies encourage violence, oppression, greed, hate, damage to the environment, etc., and I also see how individuals do the same. The problems and the wrongdoings are obvious, but implementing solutions have proven difficult to say the least.
But please answer me this; where does it say samsara is supposed to be fun? Is the reality of our situation here not blatantly obvious? At what point does that truth actually come through in how we live; in how we talk about the world? Is a pleasant samsara our goal or the cessation of dukkha?
If you are passionate about making the world a better place, then by all means go for it. I wish you the best. We have seen many people make tremendous, lasting change for the better in this world, and with the dhamma at your side I am sure that there is a lot of good that can be done.
I have been looking for the source of the world's problems my whole life; always searching the outside world, sure that the solution was out there. And it was in a way. I found the Buddha’s teaching “out there”, but I was quickly instructed to look the other way - within. I am the problem, the whole problem. By taking the proper action this problem can be solved. For me, attempting to be “IN” this world is a nightmare, but I see it through the best I can. I extend a caring hand to anyone that crosses my path; I encourage positive and helpful change when I have the power to do so. But I am not going to burn my time here fretting and beating my fists at the failures of those around me, attempting to pinpoint what they are doing wrong. I know what it is like to misunderstand the world and my position in it. Seeing through that misunderstanding, even a little bit, is hard, so it is not a surprise that many in the world are having the same difficulty. All I know is that I have found something that is making a difference in my understanding and I am so fortunate to have had the time and the freedom to explore it. I wish I could bring everyone along for the ride, but I think I will be lucky if I can get one in my lifetime.
So I guess this is where some may ask, “Well shouldn’t the whole world have the opportunity you did?” Perhaps even more basic than that, “Shouldn’t everyone at least have basic rights? Shouldn’t that be the way the world is?” I wish it was, but in short, I do not know the way the world is supposed to be. Where does it say that is the way it should be? According to the Buddha, everything is quite accurate. IT SUCKS! Hence the reason we are attempting to bring an end to it all.
I am not sure how any of this is coming off. All I know is that I do not like seeing people getting all wrapped up. So there it is.
Hitvā icchañ ca lobhañ ca, yattha satto puthujjano,
cakkhumā patipajjeyya tareyya narakam imam.
Forsaking desire and lust where the commoner is stuck
Let the man with eyes proceed and get across this hell. (Sn. 706: 137)