Dhamma Warriors: The Birth of Hope
by Mohan Tiptur, OhMyNews, Jan 24, 2008
Without compassion and understanding mankind would be extinct now
Seoul, South Korea -- My "Dhamma Warriors" concept, outlined in a previous article, has failed to kick up dust. It has not stirred the intellect of the Buddhist world. No one has bothered to tell me whether I am right or wrong. Is it because the Dhamma is so strong that it needs no warriors to defend it? Or is it because there is no warrior alive worthy to defend it.
Oh! Wise Buddha, what a band of foolish cowards you have created on this earth! My lord, the enlightened one, come back to this earth and see for yourself how happily your followers are spending their lives in cunningly acquiring trifles while they have given a pass to all your worthy noble sayings. They have twisted and manipulated all that you preached. They are asleep. Are they drowsy, or are they dead?
A true intellectual should keep one's mind open so that the new ideas come from all directions. What a farce that a Dhamma that was based on the intellectual and reason is being based on anything other than the intellectual and reason! Are the intellectuals so aloof and of such a faraway mentally that they cannot sit together and discuss anything new? Or are they waiting for some international personality to order them to think and discuss? I feel sorry for them. But I cannot wait for the dead to awake. I should do whatever I can do.
HOPE has dawned on this earth like the sunrise after the long dark night. Man, who was barbaric before civilization, was barbaric in his culture too. The civilized man took time in reforming his way of life. That period, in which man was civilized but still uncultured, was the darkest and crudest moment in the history of mankind. Though he was living in civilized cities of olden times, his culture or way of life was no better than a beast. Anger, lust, jealousy and violence ruled his life. Refinement in his behavior came with the refined thoughts. Only then did man learn to restrain his unbridled passions. Man truly became man with the birth of restraint. That was the first lesson he learned of humanity. Until then man's mind was full of false, exaggerated and superstitious beliefs and ideas.
This cultural birth of man started with the birth of restraint of passions, and that led to the birth of compassion in his mind. Compassion is the mother of all humane feelings. By combining compassion together with understanding man can reach the highest point in life. If these humane qualities -- namely, compassion and understanding -- were not born in the mind of man, mankind would have become extinct by now. Hence, I call this welcome development the dawn of HOPE. Some of the great thinkers of the pre-Christian times like the Buddha, Lao Tzu, Confucius and, Heraclitus developed the twin concepts of wisdom into a complete, full-fledged, eco-friendly, organic and holistic philosophies of life. They were the saviors of mankind who rescued mankind from cultural extinction. They are the assets of mankind. We should be grateful to them.
But the barbaric inner self manifests itself time and again and tries to undo what the great leaders did. Wicked villains do try to shadow the heroes, as the greatest dramatist Shakespeare said in one of his sonnets: "Suns of the world may stain when Heaven's sun stainth" (from "On friendship"). The man in due course of time forgot the wise advice of these wise leaders. Therefore, though in the 6th century B.C. these enlightened personalities showed the noble path for the man, he failed to perceive the depth of the crisis he was in. Thus man overlooked the chance to follow the right path to glory and the kingdom of righteousness where he could have been the ruler of the world, enjoying all that he created and invented. Literally, he could have been the crowning glory of nature.
But he took the wrong path, with the result that he lost his mental peace. He gave more importance to irrational thinking, violence, mindless exploitation of nature, superstitions, lust, religious fanaticism, etc. He went on destroying whatever was precious that he created, hoping to find something better. This state of human mind is very well brought out by W. B. Yeats in his sonnet "Meru." Now, man is left with nothing but war, destruction, madness, misery, immorality and endless physical and mental violence. The 20th century saw the greatest wars in the first half. Man touched the bottom in all the fields -- political, economic, social and educational -- and for a moment he curled and coiled in agony being unable to come out of the crisis.
NOW, in the recent past Man has rediscovered HOPE. He has rediscovered the worth of the Buddha, Lao Tzu and Confucius. These three taken together can liberate man from the present state of crisis.