Short But Sweet

Mr. Mee and Ms. Kumnung
Mr. Mee and Ms. Kumnung are my best friends in the Temple. He is a Monk student. She is a Nun’s assistant and lay disciple. That means she does all the things a Nun student would do but is not planning to actually become one. Neither Mee nor Kumnung drink alcohol, have sex, eat after noon, or partake in many of the things that most of us would consider daily habits, pleasures, or even necessities. They are both happy.
They are like parents, a brother and sister, and friends to me. They help me with my language handicap and never call me “farang.” We eat together and breathe together. When one of us leaves the Temple grounds, we miss each other. I go out from the Temple grounds often. They rarely leave at all. In spite of my financial destitution, I always share tobacco with Mr. Mee and make special efforts to get sweets for Ms. Kumnung. She smiles when I come back from town, whether I’m carrying sweets for her or not. I would miss a hundred meals just to see that smile once.
Mr. Mee is the James Brown of our Temple home. Just like the late, great “hardest working man in show business,” he is constantly making an effort. With tools that would be considered more of a liability than an asset in the Western world, he gets everything done. Raking, hoeing, planting, painting, studying, and cleaning—he does it all and more. There is no lawn mower here. He mows the large lawn with a scythe and scissors.
Neither of these people ever complains about anything although more often than not there are no sweets, and some days we have no money for rolling papers. Mr. Mee and I often make our cigarettes from shreds of calendar paper and donated tobacco.
Mee and Kumnung always try to understand me. This takes all their patience, but they somehow never run out of it. There is very little I wouldn’t do for them and it seems they each feel the same way toward me.
Mr. Mee has enough scars on his arm from heroin addiction to have scared the shit out of Kurt Cobain and Lenny Bruce.
Ms. Kumnung has both heart and lung malfunctions. She takes more prescription medication than any nursing home resident I’ve ever met.
Mee and Kumnung are married. They shared the same bed for eight years before coming to the Temple to sleep apart.
I guess they think things are better this way.
FROM THE BOOK REINCARNATION THROUGH COMMON SENSE “Reincarnation Through Common Sense is a true-story travel adventure book about rural Asian Buddhist Monks and Nuns adopting a very troubled soul from Brooklyn, New York. Westerners have written many books about living in Asian temples. None are like this crazy true story! The main character’s life runs through death into reincarnation without ever leaving his body. He describes this process in a manner so intimate and natural that you’ll think you are having coffee on a bar stool in the temple with him. For simplified street explanations of complex Buddhist thought, and an experience unique in comedic drama, spirituality, adventure, and sheer creativity, buy and read Reincarnation Through Common Sense.” https://www.amazon.com/Reincarnation-Through-Common-Sense-Doug/dp/0692019529

EMERGENCY TELEGRAM FROM AN EXTRATERRESTRIAL TO THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY OF EARTH

EMERGENCY TELEGRAM FROM AN EXTRATERRESTRIAL LIFE FORM TO THE INTERNATIONAL POPULATION OF EARTH. We are watching and trying to help you as best we can! Here is what we see right now. Nothing on your planet holds the immediate importance of getting Bernie past Hillary. The effort to do so needs undivided attention. Showing up negatives of Trump and the rest doesn’t seem the best use of time and energy right now. There will, unfortunately, be plenty of time for that later. This point gets away from us too, at times, as my brothers, sisters, and I watch you Earth folks bouncing off the walls from our dear home planet of Whatdafugaretheythinkin!. In order to keep our minds from wandering, and to insure that we follow through with the effort necessary to be helpful to you, we have had to put so many weird scenarios out of our minds. I’m sure you’ve had a couple run through your mind too. The Trump show, the blatant corruption of the Democratic party machine, the immoral press discrimination–not to mention the usual points of daily distraction (pandemic war, hunger, suffering, environmental violence, the cat pooping worms, the bills needing paid, etc.) can boggle the mind, lead to runaway imagination, and divert attention from Spring time’s primary Primary objective. I have listed below a few brain farts we have suffered while watching your process from here on Whatdafugaretheythinkin!. In the spirit of so much of the material we all read, please let me know if I’ve missed any other bullshit or flights of imagination that, like these, don’t deserve attention either. ***P.S. Option #3 may be a dream or hallucination. But I think most people (who have read this far) will agree that in this case the long shot is our best shot. Success is certainly possible. We see imagination become reality every day! Every manufactured thing, every system, every invention is an imaginative hallucination before it actually gets built into material existence. THE point is that Option #3 is worth manufacturing into reality but can’t stand a chance unless the primary step of getting Bernie past Hillary is accomplished. That means winning big enough so that all the superdelegate bullshit and all the corruption cannot usurp the will of the people. Putting in as much effort as possible may not do it. I respectfully urge all my Earthling friends and group members to surpass “possible” and put in as much effort as is necessary to get the job done. *P.S. To my many wonderful friends and all the group members in India, China, Australia, Europe, and elsewhere around the world; If you think American international policy couldn’t get any worse than it has been, you’re wrong. This is a serious situation. The results of this election will affect the entire world—again. Whatever noise you can make, whatever support you can muster for the side of peace and compassion will be heard, felt, and appreciated not only in the USA but throughout the world. In the best-case scenario we can have a chance to build the kind of world that sane, happy people want to live in. In the worst-case scenario, the next wrong U.S. president could yield results so bad that America’s most recent war-mongering era will seem like a few decades with Mother Teresa. American presidents may all be no more than symbolic stooges of the ultra-rich, but the popular vote lets the controlling few know just how much they can get away with all at once. If we send them the wrong signal now, humanity may never recover. If we send the right one, we may slow these war profiteers down for long enough to avoid a whole lot of suffering—and we could even get some problems fixed! Thank you. http://www.fearlesspuppy.org And now for our short list of Extraterrestrial brain farts, similar no doubt to some that are occurring in the minds of many Earthlings. Love and Peace from Planet Whatdafugaretheythinkin! Your Pal, Jahbuddha the Unconquerable 1—a) Trump gets snubbed by the Republican party and replaced by Jeb or Cruz. (This can certainly happen as the party chooses the candidate. The popular vote is an illusory process.) b) Trump gets killed by an assassin who says he “would have killed Hitler” if he could have. Don Drumph, at that point, is blown out of the human as well as the presidential race. Either way, a or b, the Trump followers spew violence and civil war in America. The country and the world are then further divided and conquered by the few people who already own everything. 2—Somebody blows Bernie away, saying he was an evil commie socialist. The assassin claims he “would have killed Hitler” if he could have. No one knows what might happen then. Liberal America doesn’t have the stupidity or the balls to violently revolt. A nationwide strike of non-cooperative inaction would make waves, but who knows if glorious India would have had the balls to do it if Gandhi had been capped before that famous “day of prayer and fasting” ever got off the ground? Regardless, we wouldn’t get total cooperation on this non-cooperation thing anyway, not even from folks of like mind. Americans don’t know how to cooperate that well anymore. Vastly expanded numbers of military/police folk would then be called in to man essential stations left vacant, thereby killing the desired effect of the general strike (and probably a few hundred protestors). The nation and the world then get further divided and conquered by the same few people who already own everything. 3—Bernie gets elected and the world moves toward Utopia. People regain their senses and start taking care of each other. Folks who were previously vicious scumbags have a great and sudden simultaneous epiphany and become big-hearted altruists. The people who own everything start giving it back to the people they took it from. (Of course we’d all settle for even some moderate, concrete, progress in these directions.) 4—Bernie gets elected but is hog-tied by the system. Nothing changes. The world is further divided and conquered by the few people who still own everything. 5—Trump wins the American presidency and America takes that last step to becoming the new Nazi nation. The world is further divided and conquered by the few people who own everything. All that was known as “civilization” is set back several centuries and human suffering is incalculable. 6—a) Hillary gets elected. Four to eight more years of business-as-usual (corruption, war, poverty, injustice, etc.) b) A different Republican than Trump gets elected president. Four to eight more years of business-as-usual (corruption, war, poverty, injustice, etc.) 6b has more of a mean streak than 6a and would likely be a more destructive option, but they are both owned by the same few people—yes, the ones who own everything and divide the rest of us so they can run off with the loot at a cost of great suffering by the vast majority. *Please help make the first step a reality. Ignore all the possible futures and work hard to get Bernie past the corruption now. We here on Planet Whatdafugaretheythinkin! would then develop a lot more confidence in your planet and might feel more comfortable about actually showing up there to help with the rest of the process. For the time being, we will watch from a little distance and help as we can. I gotta tell you the truth. No insult or disrespect intended. Watching your politics reminds us of watching monkeys throw shit balls at each other in the zoo. Make an ET brother want to land! Get your Bernie past the bullshit by any peaceful means necessary! Enjoy the effort. You’re going to meet some nice people.

You Can Beat The System IN 15 Seconds

“The obstacles in front of us cannot survive the awesome power of the forces that stand behind us—once we couple those forces with the incredible abilities that, believe it or not, are waiting right within our own minds. These abilities are empowered as soon as they are recognized and gain strength when they are given consistent attention. When you commit to them, they commit to you. Individual human commitment makes history bend. When the international warmongers become as compliant with peaceful goals as most of the peaceful citizens have been with all the warmongering, then the effort toward planet wide sanity will become a cooperative voice of reason that sees everyone win. Be nice to everyone. We need them all. Be nice to yourself. We need you most.” Doug “Ten” Rose Fearless Puppy

The Most Valuable, Yet Inexpensive Gift Anywhere

These are perfect holiday gifts! Buying these books will help you and everyone else too! Here’s the latest in a long string of 5*s http://minadecaro.blogspot.com/2013/12/reincarnation-through-common-sense-by.html?spref=tw

Crazy Wisdom & Great Fun For You! Perennial Wisdom and Big Help For Us All!

They give many hours of enjoyment, may cause permanent happiness, and they sponsor projects that help all humanity. You can’t beat that! Take a look. You might want to buy one for yourself too! You can give many gifts for the price of one! Buy many copies of the highly acclaimed books Reincarnation Through Common Sense and Fearless Puppy on American Road now and you will not only have perfect gifts for everyone on your list, you will be funding the growth of world wisdom as well! ALL author profits are donated to sponsor wisdom teachers, beginning with Tibetan nuns and monks. An increase in wisdom is the best chance we have to give ourselves, and leave our children, a world that’s worth living in. Twenty-one 5* reviews on Amazon don’t lie! These are great reads that sponsor a great cause. It’s the best gift idea this year! See the very entertaining author background and exciting project details—and order your books at Fearless Puppy (or Amazon/Kindle/Smashwords, or ask for it at your local book store.)

http://www.amazon.com/Reincarnation-Through-Common-Sense-Doug/product-reviews/0692019529/ref=sr_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

 

http://www.amazon.com/Fearless-Puppy-American-Road-Doug/product-reviews/0615781187/ref=sr_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

 

Above are links to the 5* reviews for Fearless Puppy on American Road, and for Reincarnation Through Common Sense, on Amazon.

Great Fun For You! Help And Wisdom For Us All!

            Crazy Wisdom and Great Fun For You! Perennial Wisdom and Big Help For Us All!

You can give many gifts for the price of one! Buy many copies of Reincarnation Through Common Sense and Fearless Puppy on American Road now and you will not only have perfect gifts for everyone on your list, you will also be sponsoring the growth of world wisdom as well!  ALL author profits are donated to increasing wisdom. An increase in wisdom is the best chance we have to give ourselves, and leave our children, a world that’s worth living in. Twenty 5* reviews on Amazon don’t lie! These are great reads that sponsor a great cause. It’s the best gift idea this year! See the exciting and very entertaining background and details, and get the books at Fearless Puppy

http://www.amazon.com/Reincarnation-Through-Common-Sense-Doug/product-reviews/0692019529/ref=sr_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

 http://www.amazon.com/Fearless-Puppy-American-Road-Doug/product-reviews/0615781187/ref=sr_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

 Above are links to Fearless Puppy and Reincarnation’s 5* reviews on Amazon.

Below, a link to a video interview with the author.

http://youtu.be/Ocygpv0t7ME

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A Video That May Reincarnate You!

A Video That May Reincarnate You!

Great video discussion about… well, a lot of notions that would be very valuable to whoever takes them into account. Below is what the interviewer thought. I thought highly of her too. Catherine is a vivacious, intelligent, woman–lovely in every sense of the word, and she’s damn good at what she does.   Fearless Puppy

If you are looking to be inspired and been wondering if you can make a difference…you have to watch Ten’s video chat with me! I’m so grateful for his candor and simplicity on what appear to be complicated matters! http://youtu.be/Ocygpv0t7ME

One Lucky Turkey!

13

Gratitude

From the newly released book Reincarnation Through Common Sense. All author profits sponsor wisdom. Please see Fearless Puppy

Most folks are grateful when something unusually pleasant comes along, great pain ends, or somebody does them a favor. People seem to save gratitude for special occasions.

The people who live at this Temple are grateful nearly all the time for whomever they are with and whatever they are doing at the moment. They remember what a lot of us have forgotten. Even when life seems to suck, there is probably something as well as someone in our life who deserves gratitude. That someone may not have physically done anything for us. They may only have encouraged us, or wished us well. But a good thought is easier to catch than a bad cold, and a good thought can carry a person a very long way. Encouragement and good wishes aren’t the small potatoes they appear to be at times.

Gratitude has a powerful potential to multiply into a series of good events. I’m grateful for that, but then again I’m grateful for a lot of things. I’m too broke to get into the poorhouse and just a couple of weeks past suicidal, but things are improving rapidly. A very highly respected spiritual leader has invited me into his community—no money down. Professional altruists care for me and a whole village feeds me. I’m doing very well for a dead guy. So when a wild errant thought still tells me that leaving life may be a better idea than staying with it, there is a pleasantly heavy load of gratitude balancing that errant thought.

I lean on it.

My debt of gratitude is owed to everyone who has put their generous effort into helping keep my boat afloat and teaching me how to adjust my sails to the wind. This debt will not be repaid by my untimely demise. That would make all their noble efforts wasted. And so, morbid thoughts must be replaced with better ones such as gratitude.

I guess whatever thoughts replace suicide are an improvement, but gratitude is special. Gratitude itself is so pure and good that it doesn’t care if I use it as a crutch. Gratitude doesn’t care what form it is used in. It’s just grateful to be working.

I’m grateful that it’s working too.

From the newly released book Reincarnation Through Common Sense. All author profits sponsor wisdom. Please see Fearless Puppy

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What Does Matter

What Does Matter

(*This piece is from next year’s book, Voices of Reason From the End of the World. It is the lead chapter in a section that pays respect to great teachers and influences. It is dedicated to George Carlin. We’re lucky in America. There have been and still are many comedians that infuse heavy doses of wisdom into their humor, but “Uncle George” was always at the top of that mountain. I, and so may others, give thanks for the fact that he was on Earth—and for the little bits of his brilliance that rubbed off on us. Thank you, Mr. Carlin. You brought us laughter, truth, integrity, courage, and conscience—and you did each of them better than most folks do any one of them.

Fearless Puppy

        Just so there are no misunderstandings, I would like to officially state something right here at the beginning of this section. Almost none of the people (there are a few exceptions) who are complimented here as teachers and influences actually know, or ever knew me. I’m not trying to make believe that I am in some kind of buddies club with every genius on Earth, or that I have personally met and had social what-to-do with any of these people. I go to lectures, classes, concerts, get the books, and watch them on the computer, HBO specials, or PBS—just like nearly everyone else who has been smart enough to seek them out or lucky enough to stumble across their information.

I have an active imagination. Even video contact can affect me strongly at times, but that’s where the “relationship” ends.

What is the big deal with this meeting-a-famous-person shit, anyway? A few people have become a lot more known than the rest of us. Sometimes this happens because we admire a person’s genius, talent, or merit. Just as often, it happens through no actual accomplishment on the part of the famous person! It often happens because shill marketing and media conglomerates with paper assholes are selling the public an image, and an artificial relationship to it. These media and marketing folks work for corporate pimps that collect big bucks from this artificially manufactured hero-worship. This hero-worship results in bizarre purchasing habits on the part of consumers who have been hypnotized into believing that their imagined connection with the “hero” is concrete, meaningful, and has some connection to the product for sale.

Being famous is no big fucking deal. It is even less of a big deal if your major accomplishment is that you’ve met one of these celebrity heroes, whether they are of the real or artificially manufactured variety. Celebrity itself is often bullshit. Celebrity by association is even more so. There’s no end to the respect I have for the people who are mentioned in this chapter, but I wouldn’t brag about meeting or knowing them personally (if I’d ever done so). Meeting someone means less than a rat’s ass.

Brag about meeting, say, Mother Teresa or the Dalai Lama? I don’t think so! I’d brag if I spoke and acted as nobly as Mother Teresa or the Dalai Lama!

No, on second thought, I guess I wouldn’t.

Regardless, meeting or knowing someone else doesn’t make you, yourself, an improved or more admirable individual. That happens when you are actually being, doing, or somehow taking part in something admirable.

I feel so strongly about this that the following true story is one of my all time favorite moments in life.

It was a beautiful autumn day in the mid-1980s at Hugo’s bar in scenic Northampton, Massachusetts. After an all day effort to deplete the world’s beer supply, a sudden flash of inspiration came to me. Over the course of the following several months that inspiration developed into a successful statewide charity project. It got a lot of attention and publicity from the press because it involved high-level politicians, famous musicians, major league sports teams, unions, volunteers who didn’t get paid at all, and a hot button issue. Above all, the project went well because none of the money passed through our volunteer group but instead went directly from contributors to very well established and reputable charities. There was no possible question-of-trust factor. (More details are available in the About the Author section or at Fearless Puppy if you are interested.)

Several months after the project I was back at Hugo’s, again doing my part to help society drain free of its alcohol content. I made this effort many times during the 1980s. A guy (decent sort) who infrequently frequented our watering hole came through the back door. He was known and well liked by one of the regulars at our table. We invited him to join us. Decent-sort-Mike was then introduced to several people who were famous for not being able to remember names.

Mike downed half a beer and suddenly turned wide-eyed. He stared at me for a few very long seconds. It was the kind of stare that made me wonder if he was on some powerful drug and I was showing up as a freshly tapped keg in his hallucination.

That wasn’t it. The mad stare was his sudden recognition of a person whom he knew had experienced the proverbial fifteen minutes of fame.

“You’re that guy from the newspapers. You’re great!” said decent-sort-Mike.

I had to reply, “Don’t be fucking ridiculous. I’m a drunk from Hugo’s, just like you are.”

The light went on in Mike’s more than slightly bloodshot eyes. It was that deeper kind of understanding that rarely happens, even between people who know each other very well. He got it.

A big slow “Wooooow!” came out of his mouth.

Mike suddenly realized that he could have done that charity project, and would have received the same attention from the media if he had. Instant insight told him that anyone could have done it. It was all just about getting up and doing it. I did kick my own drunken ass into the process but that didn’t make me any more of a superman than him. The only difference between us was that I put that situation’s potential to actual use. We bought each other beers and talked for hours after that with no further misunderstandings.

All of us humans have the same potential to be incredible.

Who you’ve met or know doesn’t matter.

Who you choose to be
and what you choose to do with your life
is what does matter.

All author profits sponsor Buddhist Nuns, Monks, and other Wisdom Professionals. Details at Fearless Puppy

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Voice Of The People?

Can We Change the Media? We Can Change the Media

Fearless Puppy

I’m trying to promote the sales of two books because all author profits sponsor Wisdom Professionals (beginning with Tibetan Nuns and Monks). It’s a lot of work for no pay but I believe very strongly in the quality of the books, and of course in the cause—as you can tell by the way I spell Wisdom Professionals with caps.

The promotional process includes, among many other things, interviews. There are several places on the Internet to find lists of radio and TV interviewers. These interviewers want to discuss certain topics and are looking for folks who have information that fits into those categories. There are also lists of print reporters looking for information on the topics they have been assigned by their editors, or topics they have chosen to freelance.

I’m grateful to all the folks who organize this and make it easier for media people to find the information they want. Their lists can also make it easier for people who have a story to find a venue that allows them to tell that story.

But I have to admit to needing a stiff drink or two after every trip through one of these lists. I look at them the same way I look at a dog that licks my face directly after eating dried turds out of the cat box. Sometimes one shower isn’t enough to wash it off. Most of the topics listed are mind-numbing drivel. What our media feeds its public makes the whole world appear to be Open Mike Night gone wild at the corner of Tequila and Meth.

Now, of course, I’m not talking about the “regular news.” Not much of what is on these lists pertain to that. The talking heads that color our perceptions of and reactions to staged wars, real fires, Emmy award-eligible politics, predictable corruption, illusory economics, selectively reported/racially profiled criminal activity, and other macabre distractions have their scripts composed by greater powers.

No, I’m talking about the groundwork that mediates our psychological landscape—the mind melting goo that softens our brains up enough so that we can eventually fall prey to the bigger stuff. The reporters on these lists seem, for the most part, to be collecting the type of information that we find in popular magazines, tabloids, the sillier talk shows, “reality” shows, and the like.

Calling All Women Who Struggle With Excessive Sweating! (CBS Television Distribution)

Pet Parents Quotes for Ladies’ Home Journal (Ladies’ Home Journal)

Most Unusual Concierge Requests (National Publication )

These are not the most bizarrely inane listings! They are very ordinary.

So many things in the world need attention. Bullshit is not one of them—and yet it seems that this sort of nonsense gets much of our daily attention while productive matters that could actually make life better starve in obscurity. Where are the reporters who ask for information from experts on cooperation versus competition? Emotional intelligence? How to live better with others? How to live better with ourselves? How to upgrade health and happiness in the modern workplace and in the home? Where are all the eager investigative beavers that gather valuable information about the advantages of using basic golden-rule morality as business ethics? Why love and compassion are so important in every imaginable venue?

They are not to be found on the most popular media lists. This bothers me. So I’m staring to write to a few of these young reporters every day. I pick the ones looking for the most ridiculously functionless content and send them each the letter below.

This may irritate a few people and get me blocked from a listing service or two. That’s OK. The Law (of Karma) works in mysterious ways! Maybe out of all the letters I send, one or two will land on the right reporters who take it to heart. Maybe those reporters will go on to higher ground and then cover, and uncover, material of conscience. They may do this in an entertaining and conscious manner that will be a wonderful catalyst for the growth of world wisdom. Stranger things have happened! No one knows where the next Deepak Chopra or George Carlin will come from.

What everyone does know is that if we keep eating turds out of the cat box, we’re going to get even sicker—and anyone who reads a newspaper, watches TV, or hears the radio knows that we’re sick enough already.

Want to join the effort? Send the letter below or anything like it to an appropriate reporter, DJ, interviewer, editor, station manager, or wherever you think it fits.

We know politicians don’t listen to the public voice, but maybe people who aren’t getting such a high price for sacrificing their integrity will. I hope we can reach some.

Meanwhile, please buy a book. There are nothing but 5* reviews at Amazon for both Reincarnation Through Common Sense and Fearless Puppy on American Road. All author profits from book sales sponsor… Well, you know what they do. If not, please see Fearless Puppy

Open Letter to Media Friends

Hello, **NAME**!

Please don’t misunderstand. This isn’t preaching or attempted teaching or anything like it! I’m not writing to tell you what you should or shouldn’t do or be. Being no smarter or cleaner than the next guy, I wouldn’t presume the moral authority to tell anyone anything. This is just a request from a friend.

You are obviously a talented person or you couldn’t function at this level. With that talent comes a privileged and rewarding responsibility. This responsibility is entwined with your ability, like a car is with the road. One serves no purpose without the other.

If you take the high ground and use your talent to focus on constructive issues, yes, it will help little do-gooder causes like mine and it will help the world at large—but that’s just a pleasant byproduct. The authentic responsibility is to your self. I doubt that I’m telling you anything you don’t already know. Even when you feel great, you can recognize a discomfort within. You know there’s a piece missing and that something is not quite right. Be grateful for that temporary and very fixable discomfort! It means that you are still in touch with yourself, that your heart is working well.

Could the problem simply be that you know you are better than this material you are working on, and that you are frustrated by dealing with nonsense?

In a world that’s falling apart on so many fronts, is spending your precious time and intellect doing an inane feature like this your best move? The only things that matter anymore are the things that help. Does this feature help? Does it substantially lighten the suffering of anyone? Will it help anyone understand how to become happier—or how to help someone else do it? Does it make you happier?

I’m not talking about conservative/liberal, left/right, pro/anti, or any other form of directional, opinionated leaning. We’re just talking about choice of focus.

*By spending yourself on wisdom, justice, and love, you become those things. If you spend your time in the cultural dumpster, you’ll start to absorb that odor instead.

I look forward to the day when we all scrape the less productive layers of cultural nonsense off of our deeper and more meaningful concerns. When we do that, things will start to improve drastically—and when you do that, you will do great things for us all as well as for yourself.

Be well. Your Pal, Tenzin (Doug “Ten” Rose) Fearless Puppy

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Temple Dog Barks At Interpreters, Translators, And Followers

The Temple Dog Barks at Interpreters, Translators, and Followers

Fearless Puppy

 I’m in the company of Buddhist Monks and Nuns in a Southeast Asian Temple. These Temple folks are a joy to know. They never blame society, their moms, the government, the Boogeyman, or the anti-Buddha for any problems they may suffer. They accept personal responsibility for their own thoughts and actions.

But Buddha himself was not a member of any of the several schools of Buddhism. Jesus was neither Catholic nor Protestant. The following inscription was on the hilt of Mohammed’s sword: “Forgive him who wrongs thee. Join him who cuts thee off. Do good to him who does evil to thee, and speak truth although it be against thyself.”

Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed, and others like them were damn fine people and exceptional spiritual examples. I have no quarrel with anyone’s God, teacher, or prophet, but followers can be fairly dangerous people at times, and translators or interpreters even more so.

Everybody talks about truth as if it is Ramen noodles and they have a case of it in the kitchen cabinet, but the truth is that what we tend to call truth is usually defined by whose truth it is. Mundane truth is subjective. It depends upon the angle from which it is being seen. That is why all the wisest folks throughout our history have told us to look within for deeper truths.

Symbolic references are often used in spiritual teachings. That’s no problem. The problems arise when interpreters and translators concretize those symbols into material “truth” or “fact,” and followers then treat that information as unbendable law. Many followers pay more attention to the illusory benevolence of superstition than they pay to fostering a functional benevolence within themselves.

For the first five hundred years of Buddhism, there were no material images of the Buddha—no statues, no paintings. There were good reasons for this.

Historical, literal, fundamentalist, concretized interpretations of symbols make it too easy for us to abuse spiritual mechanisms, and to escape responsibility for our own development and the well being of the world. This always ends badly. For yea, no lord can keepeth dry that person who will pisseth into the wind.

Translators and interpreters often reconfigure great wisdom teachings to fit their own ignorance and selfish motives, or the ignorance and selfish motives of the political and economic forces that are allied with them. Darkness sometimes co-opts the light. What we have inherited as “the will of God” may have as little to do with God’s will as Wall Street has to do with integrity in finance or snack cakes have to do with nutrition.

The term “spin doctors” may be a recently invented one, but the concept of readjusting the truth is nearly as ancient as the wisdom these vipers disassemble—and then rebuild to fit their own purposes. Many of today’s interpretations of “The Way” and “The Truth” resemble the originals about as much as the Christianity of Hitler or the Spanish Inquisition resembled the original doctrine. Some of the people who know Christ is the answer must have forgotten what the question was. This forgetting-the-question syndrome is certainly not exclusive to the Christians who have been led astray. Many followers of every faith on Earth have been way too trusting of the dogma presented them, and too trusting of the some of the people presenting it.

Interpreters package and then sell, rent, or impose upon us artificially flavored illusions of truth, salvation, enlightenment, and happiness that are built upon their goals. That twisted information and those errant goals are often very different from those of the original teachers from whom these interpreters borrow their moral authority.   Following our own inner guidance would yield better results than following the village idiot. Neither Buddha nor Jesus was waiting for a Buddha or a Jesus to come solve their personal problems or those of humanity. The key to whatever we need is within us. The job of uncovering it is ours to do.

Ripe for spiritual paths that fit neatly into our fast food/consumer mentality, so-called civilized humanity is glad to pay the bill. Many people believe that we can rent an available-on-demand and conveniently disposable synthetic substitute for decency and wisdom instead of working towards those qualities, earning them, sustaining them, and then constructively implementing them. The interpreters, the translators, the forces that ally with or employ them, and the enforcers that protect those interests continue to collect the rent for themselves while returning hollow benefits to us.

There are people who will tell you that they are on a fast track to Jesus, Jehovah, Allah, Buddha, or Wherever. They may want you to pay for more information from them, buy certain products, fight “holy” wars at their request, or donate other parts of your mind and life to them. We have all heard of many televangelists among those (although certainly not the only ones) who have made a robber baron’s fortune by convincing some of us that money can buy love and happiness—but a few greedy clowns on TV are just the tip of the iceberg.

We are the iceberg. The world might be full of Mother Teresas and Einsteins if the best of humanity’s notions were given proper attention. Many folks wouldn’t trust an average stranger with a single dollar but don’t mind trusting a politician or preacher full of vacuum-packed hope and bullshit with serious money and even their lives. Many people are too tired, misinformed, or stressed to access on their own psychospiritual existence. Others are convinced that their own personal spiritual maintenance is a job beyond their ability, so instead they trust TV personalities who don’t and will never know them with that responsibility. The result? Instead of a world full of Mother Teresas and Einsteins we have an overabundance of warped, frustrated spiritual slackers that never bothered to research where the road is but are nonetheless pissed off about not reaching the destination.

I have to say it again. Following our own inner guidance would certainly yield better results than following the clamor of our village idiots. Yes, it does require less strength to either trust or blame something outside of one’s self than it takes to recognize one’s own responsibility, find one’s one faults, and change. Unfortunately this approach is bullshit.

Whatever that Bigger Something Else out there may be, if we are distracted by biased dogma and the hidden agendas of other interests that are masked by concretized symbols and rusted metaphor, we will never get in touch with that Something Else.

Being at home with our own unstained intelligence may be as simple as making a clear-minded decision to do so. Making an effort to be more consistently aware of what we do and don’t want our brains to absorb and act upon has to yield results. Anyone consistently moving in the direction of anything will have to eventually reach it. Try it! Point yourself somewhere, start moving, and don’t change direction. You will get to that somewhere. The mind moves toward the destination we plan for it just as surely as feet move us across a room.

The greatest purpose of our greatest teachers may be to show us how, in the long run, to be our own greatest teacher.

Does all this sound bizarre, abstract, contradictory, weird, obtuse, un-interpretable, un-translatable, and maybe even disagreeably confusing? I hope so. I planned it that way.

I wouldn’t want to be mistaken for a fucking interpreter or translator myself!

God Forbid! I’d rather be a dog.

 “The common error of ordinary religious practice is to mistake the symbol for the reality,

to look at the finger pointing the way

and then to suck it for comfort rather than follow it.”

 Alan Watts

  “Having failed to distinguish thoughts from things, we then fail to distinguish words from thoughts.

We think that if we can label a thing we have understood it.”

 Maha Sthavira Sangarakshita

“You can tell you created God in your image when it turns out God hates the same people you do.”

 Anne Lamott

Fearless Puppy

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