A Yearning Yarn of "Silk"

by Shen Shi'an, The Buddhist Channel, Nov 18, 2007

Dharma-Inspired Movie Review: www.silkmovie.com

SIngapore -- "Silk" tells a meditative tale of a married French man's infatuation with a lady in Japan. She was the mistress of another, thus a forbidden love for him. Yet all she was to him was more a concept than a person, having only stolen a few prolonged glances at her, having been once lightly caressed by her in a bath.

He had never touched her, and never really communicated with her. He did not even speak or understand her language. All he had were supposedly letters from her, in Japanese, which had to be translated to be understood.

Upon returning home, he still pines for her. She had become a persistent "ghost" that haunts, but only as much as he was attached to "it". His wife comes to realise this in time, but never lets him know, as she continues loving him. He drifts away to become an absent husband, despite the down to earth presence of his forgiving wife.

With no word from his "love interest" for a long time, he receives a letter in Japanese one day, speaking of how the few precious moments of "togetherness" were enough for eternity, that it was time to let go.

His wife later falls gravely ill and passes away... and he comes to realise that the last letter was asked to be written for him by his wife, who could see his suffering from attachment to the unattainable. In a way, the letter was also a love letter of farewell for him by his wife.

In this sense, it was no forgery or deceit. So loving was his wife that she decided to use the letter to console him of the loss of his virtual "mistress". He is tragically left all alone in the end with neither "loves", regretting of how he did not cherish his wife, who was always there for him, even if waiting in his "absence".

Who you do not really know, you cannot really love. For what is loved is but an ethereal illusion of your deluded perception. Who do we love? Those who look lovely, or those who are loving, or those who deserve love? And who does not? Which is why the truest of love is for all. Love might easily be mixed with lust, but it need not be. And how easy it is to mistaken the lust for love. Even if there is strong karmic affinity, it might be lust, not love - at first sight. It is also easy to become "long-sighted" with longing, to lose sight of those already around us. As long as there is uncurbed craving, even the love of your life by your side is never enough.

Yet even those who love us truly, whom we love truly, are still transient, not much different from our subjects of infatuation - other than offering more fulfilling relationships. How then, should we love? As Stonepeace put it, "Because everything changes from moment to moment, we should treasure everything in this moment. Because everything changes from moment to moment, we should not be attached to anything in this moment." This might seem like a paradoxically impossible task. How do we treasure those we love without attachment? Is it not self-contradictory?

The Buddha himself practised this perfectly. He treasured the presence of his disciples greatly, be they in good health or ill, but when some inevitably pass away before he entered parinirvana, he was never sorrowful. Why so? Is he heartless? No. Nothing else would be further from the truth.

Out of perfect love, he knew he had already given them the best he had to offer - his perfect compassion and wisdom, which inspired them towards liberation. There was simply no need to weep. Likewise, we will have no need to weep either - as long as we treasure those with us with as little attachment as possible. Challenging perhaps, but practice does makes perfect! Not only is this possible, it is the only way to true love.

We Need Your Help to Train the
Buddhist AI Chat Bot
(Neural Operator for Responsible Buddhist Understanding)

For Malaysians and Singaporeans, please make your donation to the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB

The SWIFT/BIC code for RHB Bank Berhad is: RHBBMYKLXXX
Address: 11-15, Jalan SS 24/11, Taman Megah, 47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Phone: 603-9206 8118

Note: Please indicate your name in the payment slip. Thank you.

Dear Friends in the Dharma,

We seek your generous support to help us train NORBU, the word's first Buddhist AI Chat Bot.

Here are some ways you can contribute to this noble cause:

One-time Donation or Loan: A single contribution, regardless of its size, will go a long way in helping us reach our goal and make the Buddhist LLM a beacon of wisdom for all.

How will your donation / loan be used? Download the NORBU White Paper for details.

For Malaysians and Singaporeans, please make your donation to the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB

The SWIFT/BIC code for RHB Bank Berhad is: RHBBMYKLXXX
Address: 11-15, Jalan SS 24/11, Taman Megah, 47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Phone: 603-9206 8118

Note: Please indicate your purpose of payment (loan or donation) in the payment slip. Thank you.

Once payment is banked in, please send the payment slip via email to: editor@buddhistchannel.tv. Your donation/loan will be published and publicly acknowledged on the Buddhist Channel.

Spread the Word: Share this initiative with your friends, family and fellow Dharma enthusiasts. Join "Friends of Norbu" at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/norbuchatbot. Together, we can build a stronger community and create a positive impact on a global scale.

Volunteer: If you possess expertise in AI, natural language processing, Dharma knowledge in terms of Buddhist sutras in various languages or related fields, and wish to lend your skills, please contact us. Your knowledge and passion could be invaluable to our project's success.

Your support is part of a collective effort to preserve and disseminate the profound teachings of Buddhism. By contributing to the NORBU, you become a "virtual Bodhisattva" to make Buddhist wisdom more accessible to seekers worldwide.

Thank you for helping to make NORBU a wise and compassionate Buddhist Chatbot!

May you be blessed with inner peace and wisdom,

With deepest gratitude,

Kooi F. Lim
On behalf of The Buddhist Channel Team

Note: To date, we have received the following contributions for NORBU:
US$ 75 from Gary Gach (Loan)
US$ 50 from Chong Sim Keong
MYR 300 from Wilson Tee
MYR 500 from Lim Yan Pok
MYR 50 from Oon Yeoh
MYR 200 from Ooi Poh Tin
MYR 300 from Lai Swee Pin
MYR 100 from Ong Hooi Sian
MYR 1,000 from Fam Sin Nin
MYR 500 from Oh teik Bin
MYR 300 from Yeoh Ai Guat
MYR 300 from Yong Lily
MYR 50 from Bandar Utama Buddhist Society
MYR 1,000 from Chiam Swee Ann
MYR 1,000 from Lye Veei Chiew
MYR 1,000 from Por Yong Tong
MYR 80 from Lee Wai Yee
MYR 500 from Pek Chee Hen
MYR 300 from Hor Tuck Loon
MYR 1,000 from Wise Payments Malaysia Sdn Bhd
MYR 200 from Teo Yen Hua
MYR 500 from Ng Wee Keat
MYR 10,000 from Chang Quai Hung, Jackie (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from K. C. Lim & Agnes (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from Juin & Jooky Tan (Loan)
MYR 100 from Poh Boon Fong (on behalf of SXI Buddhist Students Society)
MYR 10,000 from Fam Shan-Shan (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from John Fam (Loan)
MYR 500 from Phang Cheng Kar
MYR 100 from Lee Suat Yee
MYR 500 from Teo Chwee Hoon (on behalf of Lai Siow Kee)
MYR 200 from Mak Yuen Chau

We express our deep gratitude for the support and generosity.

If you have any enquiries, please write to: editor@buddhistchannel.tv