Saturday, February 14, 2009

Why Some animals are more equal than others? IV

In honor of Abraham Lincoln’s 200th birthday (Feb 12, 2009)


He found himself in an unacquainted place. The clouds were strolling under his feet. In his surroundings, the girls who were looking immortally young, with their hair beautifully shaped in wigs, played the musical instruments that he had never seen. Something was swimming across in the air towards him. He recognized what it was. That was his old, shabby and worn out hat. He caught it up and put it on his head, pulling it down a little more on the right side until it covered up enough his life-long old scar at his right eye. Suddenly, a shrill ghostly voice appeared from some corner of this strange place, “Sic semper tyrannis” (Thus always to tyrants).

He started to notice a twilight that flashed at a mysterious place at some distance of his eye sight. He began walking towards this mysterious light. The shrill voice seemed to be getting far and far away as he walked forth. He wished this voice of evil nature should completely fade away. As the worn-out hat that topped his head, his life had been ruffled out since his very young childhood.

“All my life has a single cause, that is an apology for the government of the people, for the people, and by the people”, he said in remembrance of his past soul. He voice was full of melancholy. He started to blab out a few stanzas that his past soul adored the most,

“Tis the wink of an eye, ‘tis the draught of a breath,

From the bosom of health to paleness of death

From the gilded saloon to the bier and the shroud,

Oh, why should the spirit of mortal be proud?”

He remembered the beauty of the bouquet he dropped off at the tomb of Ann. He remembered the witted tease of Mary in her younger years. At last, he even remembered the denial he accepted at his age of 32 from a sixteen year old Sarah. All these have been left together with his past soul of soberness. No one was with him now in going to this mysterious twilight. He eagerly hoped that probably already late Ann should be there at this light source.

“Yes, honest Abe, no one from the past is with you. However, I have been with you, all the time”, he heard a very dignified voice. He saw a figure walking in the fog, steadily toward him. The figure was as tall as he was, around six-feet two inches, the shoulders were broad, the bones and joints were large, and the gait of the figure had no need to boast of the distinctive characters and strength of the figure person. He saw the figure’s face now: a well-shaped face with a firm chin, a prominent nose with blue gray penetrating eyes. His noble strong hand was holding a rosary wreath.

“O, Founding father, Washington”, he recognized the figure and stuck his head into the well-rounded chin of the figure and wept. Washington embraced him and padded his long back and mourned, “You are the second founding father of America, Abe”. Father Washington put the wreath on Abe’s head. Father Washington’s eyes were also welling up with tears. A loss of half a million people for a single cause late Abe had successfully defended and paid his life just recently, Not to become a house divided against itself!

“Where I am now, Father?” Lincoln asked softly. “You are at the front door of Heaven. There is a task that lies ahead of you, Abe”, explained Washington. Washington continued, “The Heaven here is called the immortal heaven of rationality. This heaven is different from the normal heavens where the ordinary mortal humans from earth are used to have faith in and are used to arrive. This is not the Christian Heaven, Islamic Heaven or Buddha’s Heaven where a monarch god is able to rule. This is the heaven of wisdom, compassion, temperance and mindfulness.For this heaven door to be opened, you need to debate and defeat the three monkeys who guard this heaven. Debate with them and crush them, and the monkeys will give the key to open this heaven door for you. That is your first task for our rejoining in Heaven, Abe”.

Abe said in ambiguity, “My past soul has never crushed any human life, Father. I have not ever sent a single soul of the Southern rebels to the guillotine. I never have killed an animal for sake of my food”. Washington smiled graciously, “If you don’t send these monkeys to the guillotine of irrationality this time, they will send the humanity to their guillotine of rationality in the future, Abe. For God’s sake and your duty as moral imperative, you need to crush these three greedy and irrational monkeys,” Washington padded Abe for the last time, waved his hand and disappeared.

(To be cont. Three monkeys Abe Lincoln has to crush are Bodhisattva of No Priority for All Are the Same, Bodhisattva of No priority for All Are Nothing, and a Burmese civilized and courteously polite person called Always Thank a Capitalist for His Immense Gratefulness for Your Food)


Anonymous said...

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Sim said...

It is difficult to believe Monkey One and Monkey Two as the Bodhi creatures of Buddhism.They seem to be the same excuses from any major religion of the world. Grasping these excuses, religious men all over the world might become sluggish like donkeys and irresponsibly evade the prevailing problems in reality. The tyrants of the past and current time also might have justified their atrocities in the same way.


Jack Bodhi said...

"All are the same" and "all are nothing" are the most corrupted forms of nihilism. These concepts, as their ultimate disintegration and extremely reductionist views, obviously give birth to dispassionate sense of responsibility of many devout Buddhists. Innovative minds in all Buddhist countries are also suppressed by these hypocritical views. I will be consistently gainsaying that these views originated from our worldly-wise Buddha, if Buddha's paramita is for the good of the whole human society.

Democracy and anarchy are only a thin margin different based on how people perceive, interpret and reason the fundamental principles. The conflict between Buddha's genuine original view and these prevailing hypocritical views might be in the same situation. It could be not uncommon that those malicious views are perceived as authentic principles of Buddhism, thus enslaving the weak-heart Buddhists.We must admit that our ancestry (Buddhist scholars,Buddhist practitioners) have not well-done enough for understanding in-depth of what Buddha really meant in those highly valuable sermons.

By and large, the current status of the prevailing views in Buddhism needs many counter-arguments and revisions, if Buddhism is to persist eternally for its good sake of our world and younger generations.

Freethinker said...

In ancient stoic view before the birth of Jesus Christ, Stoics defined things in three ways:(1) things that are required to be done(2) things that are required to be avoided (3) things that should be regarded as indifferent. Stoics regarded the first two principles as generally much broader sense than the third, as the former are moral reasons to lead and guide human beings to live with nature and the god or universe. Stoics regarded "the doctrine of indifferent things", the third one, as a narrow sense and undermined its contribution to progress of humanity. The Kantian point of view that inspected Stoicism also regarded the doctrine of indifferent things as extra-moral.

In contrast with stoicism, a Pagans' philosophy of atheists who had similar holdings with many tenets of Buddhism in their ancient time, Buddhism regarded indifference as the highest moral principle as neutrality about things. At this point, a revision should be called to make a question " whether the indifference referred by Buddha is the same as indifference referred by Stoics". My point is that the current prevailing views of Buddhists are ambiguous in catching up with this specific meaning of indifference. We Buddhists might have regarded indifference as indifference to things, then it is distorted in its moral sense and is leading to the death of humility against doing the mistakes, or bearing up with the tasks. Buddha might have meant "indifference to passion", then this Bodhi enlightenment principle could hold for its highest sense in defense of human rationality and moral reason,so and thus it still will assert its tremendous power for Buddha's paramita contribution to progress of humanity.