We all have our own unique view of the world yet books, laws and opinons attempt to push people to share the same views. Case in point, any politician that doesn’t tout the party line is a “Rino” or a “Dino” (Republican in name only, Democrat in name only) If religious, many times if you don’t share the same view points, you are labeled “Not Christian enough”, even worse, if you are not religious at all, you are a blasphemer, in some countries threatened with death and even here in the United States some will say you face something worse than death… you will burn in hell, my friend 🙂
While I am not a Buddhist, this blog has it’s roots in my learning about Buddhism and sharing what I have learned. My mind strays from the main purpose as I often feel I have a story to tell. Today, after covering many religious topics, I want to explain why my views are closely related to Buddhism.
I have my own unique view of the world. I was always intrigued by, for instance, one of my parents saying one thing while my other parent doing something different. My mom would tell me that if I didn’t go to church, she would go to hell, yet my Dad never attended. Alcohol was always an intrinsically bad habit yet my father, as well as my whole family would drink. The loving Catholic family… the anger and yelling, the fear. It was a drag sometimes that the youngest one needed babysitting, he had to be watched, he was a tag along; I think sometimes people resented having the little one around– I don’t say this to be cruel to the youngest one — I am the youngest one 🙂
I always tried to question everything. I always tried to look at both sides. I probably over analyzed anything I didn’t have a full understanding of and even today, I can’t understand how people can blindly Copy and Paste, “Share” a facebook post that seems somewhat outlandish. Instead of blindly following… Fact Check!
What I have learned from Buddhism is that we all have suffering in one aspect or another. I can accept that my mom had certain beliefs and it was a struggle at times but here I am today holding my very own unique view of the world. The effect of Alcohol is dependant on the person. One person may suffer while another simply has no ill effect from it. I can concede that the “babysitter(s)” may have had their free time reduced but as for resentment… it really comes down to suffering. You can utilize your time in a positive manner or in a negative manner.
You can always find something to struggle about if you are looking for it. On the flip side, you can always find something wonderful about every situation. Do you know the difference? It really comes down to HOW you want to view things. Obviously if you are negative, you may look for the negative in every situation. I am simply blown away by those who extrude positive feelings. I try to be positive but my first reaction to things is often negative. I want to be like those positive people!
I recently told a friend the things I appreciate about them! Such a good person with a good attitude and it shows by how much of a following of friends they have. I’m Envious!! When they responded to me, they pointed out that those things that I pointed out were actually some of the same things that I did. I could see the goodness of another person and was blinded by ?Self Esteem? (is that the right word?) that I couldn’t see that I did the same or similar things.
Aaah, Buddhism is self realization! Finding the inner beauty in yourself! and as I have joked about in the past:
Buddha…The Original Self Help Guru!
A few weeks ago a Buddhist monk described the “Pure Land” (Enightenment/Nirvana) in the exact way I thought. It is truly something that comes from your mind. It is the pure feeling of being positive and you feel no suffering (Pain, Stress, Affliction, Addiction..etc). We can find ourselves in the “Pure Land” for a few seconds, minutes, hours of the day but it is temporary because a negative thought or something we “suffer” from pops up and takes us out of that moment…. The object is to completely eliminate negativity and all suffering so that we can forever remain in that “Pure Land”.
***Note*** The views expressed here are my own and not of my teachers. My own unique view.
Picture Credit: Venerable Wuling