Since I wrote my last post, I have come to a striking realization which, quite frankly I found difficult to rationalize at first, but I do stand by my original post. The issue in that post was a monk calling another devotee an animal and telling said devotee to “go to hell.” I strongly opposed such actions (words) from this monk. As I said, I found it lacking in empathy, and also unnecessary and very unhelpful. You can go back and read the other post so I don’t have to re-tell the story.
The issue I have now is that, though most of my readers will not remember, but last year I wrote a post about the “militant Buddhist monks” in Myanmar. In that post, I supported the actions of the monks to the extent that they were doing their dharma in protecting those who needed protecting. I did not know the whole story but assuming that is what they were doing, I supported their taking up arms.
So to review, I’ve supported armed warfare while deploring name-calling and verbal damnation. Why? It’s not as though a verbal damnation is holds any water. A monk is still a human being just like the other devotee. But I think that is precisely the point. Nobody, and I mean nobody has any right to advise someone to “go to hell” nor do they have the right to equate someone with an animal (the intent being, obviously, pejorative as it is in this case). That is a foul upon the object of the verbal attack as well as on animals, who are every bit as noble as we are.
The Buddhist monks in Myanmar on the other hand, while no man has a right to make a forceful, violent attack on another man, all have the right to protect themselves and certainly have the right to the selfless act of protecting others.
When it comes down to it, I supported anti-terrorism and denounced bullying.
Would I rather have name-calling in the world than gun-fire? Yes, all things considered.
Anyway just had to get that out.
Jai Hari Aum Mani Padme Hum