Tuesday, June 25, 2013

As long as you LOVE me (cartoon)

Wisdom Quarterly; Gary Larson (cartoonist); American monk Ven. Nyanasobhano (Leonard Price), Louisville, Kentucky, BPS Bodhi Leaves 124; ArtisticRhythms.com
Fictional story Siddhartha (rustysgodblog)
If it is possible to live with a purpose, what should that purpose be? A purpose might be a guiding principle, a philosophy, or a value of supreme importance that informs and directs our activities and thoughts.

To have one is to live seriously -- though not necessarily wisely -- following some track, believing in a hub to the wheeling universe or a sea toward which we flow or an end before which all the hubbub of civilization subsides.

What is your purpose, friend, or what should it be?

Lotus rebirth of Uppalavana (pxleyes.com)
Perhaps most of us do not come to a clear conclusion in the matter, but this does not mean we have no purpose, only that we do not recognize it or admit it or even choose it for ourselves.

In the unhappiest case nature simply takes its course, which is a turbid meandering through the swamps of desire. If life means nothing then only pleasure is worthwhile; or if life has meaning and we cannot get at it then still only enjoyment matters -- such is the view of brutes and some sophisticated philosophers.

It slips into the unconscious by default when we hold no other, but we are reluctant to entertain it and will rather, if we think about it, take as our purpose support of family, search for beauty, improvement of society, fame, self-expression, development of talent, and so on.

Relationships are no refuge (thinkstock)
But it might be fair to say that apart from these or beneath these the fundamental purpose of many of us is the search for love, particularly romantic love.

The love of a man for a woman and a woman for a man is often the floor to which people fall after the collapse of other dreams. It is held to be solid when nothing else is, and though it frequently gives way and dumps them into a basement of despair... More

"Our actions are all led by the mind [heart];
Mind is their master, mind is their maker.
If one acts or speaks with a defiled state of mind,
Then suffering follows like the cart-wheel
that follows the foot of the ox.
"Our actions are all led by the mind;
Mind is their master, mind is their maker.
If one acts or speaks with a pure state of mind,
Then happiness follows like a shadow
that remains behind without departing."
- (Dhammapada 1 and 2)

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