Sunday, September 12, 2010

Through a Window

Well, what once was a window:

Yes, another shot from my rundown muse known as the Boyce Institute, and I still have two more rolls to develop! It's just as well, since I haven't been out shooting much lately.

I've been thinking a lot about the whole desire/suffering relationship lately, and the Buddhist take on it. I'm not sure if anybody actually said, "desire is suffering," but they do say that desire is pretty much the root cause. It's like you have a craving, a desire for something, whether it's food, sex, leveling up on a video game, whatever. Once that desire is sated, you're soon left feeling empty, and desiring it again, and you're on the wheel. Now maybe this doesn't sound like a description written by someone who got an A- in his Indo-Tibetan Buddhism class (and I'm willing to hear from all the other Buddhists out there reading this since I know you're out there), but it's the best I can do for now.

I'm thinking I really should get back into reading those books, especially The Universe in a Single Atom by HHTDL, since I only read a little of it when it was assigned. Basically HH lays it out that there are no incongruities between modern science, the scientific method, and the Buddhist Universe. Since one of the tenets of Buddhism is that you shouldn't take anybody's word for anything. You have to investigate for yourself.

I mean, The Buddha could be a real jerk like that. Somebody would ask him a question, then he'd lay out this long explanation and at the end he says, "But I might be full of shit. Who knows!" You don't see Moses coming down from Mt. Sinai with "The Ten Suggestions." They're commandments. "Thou Shall." Thou Shall NOT." There's no, "Well, god says you really shouldn't kill people but who is he to tell you what to do with your life."

Now of course killing is frowned upon in Buddhism, but the choice is yours to be a nice person or to be a jerk. If you kill someone, don't be surprised if you wake up in your next life as a hungry ghost (I can't even begin to explain that one, and no, that isn't something you find on a takeout menu). It's like the Buddhist universe and the way it works is laid out to you. How you want to live in it is up to you.

I suppose you could say that about the rest of the world too.

Know you've heard the others, phonies to the lovers
Then of course, the choice is yours.