Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Smart answers do not liberate!

There was this guy who wrote the below in response to various emails from others in a Buddhist forum group.

The "ultimate" face of Karmapa never change but the relative face of Karmapa always change.
The "ultimate" face of a dog never change but the relative face of a dog always change.
So, "ultimtely" Karmapa is no different from a dog but relatively they are.
Karmapa's relative face is unafflicted at all but a dog's relative face is afflicted by the 5 poisons.

And he wrote this in response to a message about the dragon boat victims.

If you must cry, please cry.
Nothing to be afraid and shy,
To see IMPERMANANCE deeply though it hurts very much,
Is more worthy than having the whole universe in material wealth.
After seeing impermanence, one must truly appreciate IT,
He who sees impermanence sees the true Dharma.
He who sees the true Dharma sees the Buddha's True Face.
Have faith and summon strength to carry on,
Never waiver in your pure aspirations.
Remember this for the sake of your loved ones and all,
Treading the path of Loving Kindness and Compassion
No matter how long the journey will be.

He got this response:
Smart understanding does not liberate one from samsara. In one of my Q&As with Master Seung Sahn, I also gave smart answers. But the master could see it right away. There was no way to hide from him. He said frankly that there was still thinking in my answers. In other words, there was still much intellect, and not innate wisdom. So, he sends me back to work on my mind...and still working on it. I am not sure your comments are your innate wisdom or more intellectual garbage (like my answers to the Zen Master were). Only you will know.

Wisdom shown through our actions is much better than wisdom through talking. Take a certain friend I know, for example. He had gathered around 5 Rinpoches to recite and pray for the victims. I am sure no one instructed him to do it. It is just his own demonstration of bodhicitta. Understanding impermanence does not mean we become a piece of dead wood. "Letting go" does not mean becoming emotionless and doing nothing. “Tragedy, tragedy-lar!”, “Die, die-lar!”, “why make this into a big deal”…these kind of attitude is incorrect. Instead we SHOULD actively benefit sentient beings, dead or alive, own self and others!


s said...

I thought the person who posted the message in blue did post something compassionate. He was trying only to console the person and yet not let him forget that impermanence. It also doesn't mean the if a person gathers 5 rinpoches, he is the only one who is really compassionate. Maybe he knew the victims or the family or maybe there was some personal link, so he had that impetus whereas this other person didn't have. Anyway, why judge whether one has or doesn't have compassion, whether compassion is talk or not talk, or whether wisdom is intellectual or not. We are not in some compassion-catwalk where we are trying to parade or compare our levels of compassion. The guy in blue was IMO offering some kind of consolation, we should thank him for his effort to write those gathas.

Mahabodhiyana said...

But I do know the background of the person who wrote in blue and also the person who gathered the 5 Rinpoches. And it is in fact that the person who gathered the 5 Rinpoches are truly more compassion. The other person was just talking and doing nothing. The reason why Buddhist Masters emphasise so much on bodhicitta is because it is a higher level of compassion. And we are, indeed, asked to develop our compassion to higher and higher levels. I am sorry if you donot agree.

s said...

maybe, but yet, i dun know. the comments in red are quite degrading.

of cse we shd try to increase compassion, but by its very nature, compassion is quite unjudgemental.

external actions and internal motivation may be quite different.

Mahabodhiyana said...

If you think it's degrading, wait till you meet the real Zen masters. The actual person who got the comments did not think it was degrading though. The think is, people must realise, if they are capable of making wise talks, they must be equally be able to put those wisdoms into action. And not just making "wise comments" in emails. But I don't blame you for thinking so because you are not aware of the background behind those comments... blue and red.