The Zen of zero desire as millions die, billions suffer, trillions looted

What is:

What is not:

  • Enough humans of intellectual integrity and moral courage to end unlawful and lie-based wars.
  • Enough humans of empathy to end poverty.
  • Enough humans of honesty to declare a “debt supply” is not a “money supply.”

What is a game:

  • Independent of whatever is and is not, we’re in charge of our game to stand and live for all virtues we value.
  • Accepting humans’ apparent limits, we’re in charge of our game to tell the truth with intent to communicate (just as we received in our awakening).
  • We’re in charge of our game to never suffer from desire that Life be different from what is and is not, and play to cause communities of virtue.

What apparently is not our game, and questions not ours to answer:

  • Will we win? (We are guests without authority in life, but maybe we’re slowly building exponential growth… just maybe)
  • Are “activists” only to provide choice for humans as we play a game we’ll never win? (I see no way to factually answer this, and what we have so far is a game the 99% has never ever won)
  • Where are we headed? (It’s our game to have faith we’re loved by Life and do our best, but as guests on Earth this future is not our call)

What is always of value:

  • Experiencing and expressing virtue as powerfully as we can imagine.
  • Connecting to all in Life as artistically as we can imagine.
  • Experiencing and expressing the beauty we always sense behind all forms.
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  • gozounlimited
  • Thank you immensely for this. I bow in your virtual direction. ;-}

    From the video: “Likewise, do not differentiate yourself as apart from others, or from the world outside.” (@2:45). Aye, here’s the rub. Speaking as a Westerner who has become a Zen poet, this is exactly what we’ve been doing for thousands of years. Since the time of ancient Greek philosophers, who studied the world *as if* it were a mechanism, we’ve been reducing our selves to mechanisms operating in idealized, unnatural settings.

    Here’s a simple test: can you put your finger on the boundary between your self and the rest of the universe? Can the dividing line, between your self and any other thing, be localized, described, and analyzed? What does it look like? Of what is it made? How does it function?

    Likewise, if one takes a close look at the cells from which our awareness is arising right now, one will see that the cell membrane is necessarily semi-permeable; at all times, there is much traffic through their many pores. The extra-cellular is always in the process of becoming the infra-cellular, and vice versa. So where is the line? Can you see that it’s not so much found in nature as it is imposed by our methods of analysis and speech?

    I repeat: There is no such absolute, permanent line as is suggested by the self/other divide. In today’s modern, industrialized, “advanced” society, though, we believe the opposite to be true. If we didn’t, there would be no surprise in the verse from “I Am The Walrus” that goes: “I am he/ As you are he/ As you are me/ And we are all together.” This spurious belief imprisons us in *cellves* of our own mistaken making.

    Fortunately, there are many ways out of these hell-hole cellves we’ve mistakenly made for our selves. Here are but two.

    Short way out (by yours truly):

    (who’s there?)
    (buddha who?)

    (IOW, we are the ones we’ve been longing for, the ones with astonishing powers to solve our problems, but being conditioned always to look outside of our selves for answers, we just don’t realize it.)

    Long way out (I can’t recommend reading the entirety of the following article highly enough, esp. for those who consider themselves to be Buddhist):

    <bChanging the Way Society Changes:
    Transposing Social Activism into a Dramatic Key

    By Peter D. Hershock
    East-West Center
    Asian Studies Development Program

    Abstract: While many Buddhists are rightly committed to working
    in the public sphere for the resolution of suffering, there are very
    real incompatibilities between the axiomatic concepts and strategic
    biases of (the dominant strands of) both current human rights discourse
    and social activism and such core Buddhist practices as seeing
    all things as interdependent, impermanent, empty, and karmically
    configured. Indeed, the almost startling successes of social activism
    have been ironic, hinging on its strategic and conceptual indebtedness
    to core values shared with the technological and ideological
    forces that have sponsored its own necessity. The above–mentioned
    Buddhist practices provide a way around the critical blind spot instituted
    by the marriage of Western rationalism, a technological bias
    toward control, and the axiomatic status of individual human being,
    displaying the limits of social activism’s institutional approach to
    change and opening concrete possibilities for a dramatically Buddhist
    approach to changing the way societies change.

    Formally established tolerance of dissent and internal critique has become
    a mark of distinction among contemporary societies. Indeed,
    with economic globalization and the rhetoric of democracy acting in
    practically unassailable concert, the imperative to establish and maintain

    Journal of Buddhist Ethics 6 (1999):154-181

    Changing the Way Society Changes:
    Journal of Buddhist Ethics 6 (1999): 155

    the conditions under which political protest and social activism are possible
    has become the keystone challenge to developing nations throughout
    Africa, Asia, and Central and South America.

    It is not my intention here to question the legitimacy of this challenge.
    The possibility of dissent is crucial to realizing a truly responsive society
    capable of correcting its own errors of judgement and organizational practice,
    and institutional changes of the sort brought about by political protest
    and social activism have undeniably been instrumental in this process. What
    I want to question are the prevalent strategies for bringing about such corrections
    and the axiological presuppositions on which they pivot. Although
    it may be true that “nothing succeeds like success,” it is also true that nothing
    more readily blinds us to inherent flaws in the means and meaning of
    our successes than “success” itself. Critical inattention to the strategic axioms
    underlying the successful engineering of political and social change
    might, in other words, finally render our best-–intended efforts self-–defeating.

    My thesis, then, is a disquieting one: social activism’s successes have
    hinged on its strategic and conceptual indebtedness to core values shared
    with the technological and ideological forces that have sponsored its own
    necessity. That is, the same conditions that have made successful social
    activism possible have also made it necessary. With potentially tragic irony,
    social activist practices — and theory — have been effectively reproducing
    rather than truly reducing the conditions of institutionalized disadvantage
    and dependence.

    In a liberal democratic context, such a thesis verges on political and
    philosophical heresy, and if we are hard pressed to take it seriously, it is
    only because the positive and progressive nature of the changes wrought
    by social activism are so manifestly self–evident. Unfortunately, if our prevailing
    standards of reason and critical inquiry are not entirely neutral, the
    manifestly positive and progressive nature of social activism’s history might
    be the result of a critical blind–spot. In that case, the ironic nature of social
    activist success would be effectively invisible.

    As a way around any such critical lacunae, I will be appealing to such
    core Buddhist practices as seeing all things as impermanent, as karmically
    configured, and as empty or interdependent. These practices and the theories
    adduced in their support mark a radical inversion of the critical and
    logical priorities constitutive of the philosophical, religious, and political
    traditions that have governed our dominant conceptions of freedom and
    civil society. By systematically challenging our bias for subordinating values
    to facts, relationships to the related, uniqueness to universality, and
    contribution to control, Buddhist practice makes possible a meaningful as-

    Peter D. Hershock
    Journal of Buddhist Ethics 6 (1999): 156

    sessment and revision of social activist strategy. Importantly, it also opens
    the possibility of critically evaluating the phenomenon of ‘engaged Buddhism’
    and its ostensibly corrective relationship with the root conditions
    of suffering.

  • smokethebarbecue

    For a reality check, read

    Or consider this from “Zen Flesh, Zen Bones” pg 169:

    Gutei raised his finger whenever he was asked a question about Zen. A boy attendant began to imitate him in this way. When anyone asked the boy what his master had preached about, the boy would raise his finger.Gutei heard about the boy’s mischief. He seized him and cut off his finger. The boy cried and ran away. Gutei called and stopped him. When the boy turned his head to Gutei, Gutei raised up his own finger. In that instant the boy was enlightened