Thursday, August 9, 2018

What would the Buddha do: Climate change?

(Bob Hodson-Smith, Jules Wagstaff BSc PGCE,, ; Crystal Quintero, Ashley Wells, CC Liu (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


What in the heaven happened to our iceberg?
After reading an essay by Rob Burbea titled “[The] Buddha and the Sacred Earth” on the DANCE website, this was written for friends in Dharma (Dhamma) concerned about inaction on climate change.

We have worked from our practical experience, study, and research to put forward a plan of action. It may also be of interest to anyone trying to understand the Buddha's wisdom. It is written in an understandable way for someone with little knowledge of Buddhist terminology. Let's look at the issue in three parts:
  1. What the Buddha knew and how it motivated him to act
  2. What he would do about the present situation
  3. What may happen if things continue the way they are
Where have all the flowers gone? Wildfires
We conclude that Prince Siddhartha Gautama, who became Shakyamuni Buddha, would indeed be motivated to act on the climate change the news reports on, assuming those reports are accurate.

We suggest he would organize and establish a means for ordinary people to walk away from the [disaster capitalist] economic system that is driving growth for its own sake and carrying on unsustainable business-as-usual.

Unfortunately, we foresee much potential for conflict as a means of "solving" [or paying for a carbon credit capitalist market to profit in the name of] the climate change problem.
Part One
California is burning; other states are flooding. It's "climate chaos" and chemtrails!

Let's suppose the last Buddha Gautama (Shakyamuni, formerly Prince Siddhartha Gautama) was to appear here and now.

As an extraordinary person with a modern education who knows our history and is fully aware of the destabilization of the climate, he would be well aware of the problem and already thinking of a solution(s).

Being a buddha -- a fully awakened teacher -- he would also know the truths of existence. The Buddha was the buddha because he knew enlightenment/awakened awareness (bodhi), the knowledge of the truths of existence.

The term buddha originates from the word "awake" (budh), awake because of what he directly knew by insight.
So what would the Buddha do in this circumstance here and now? What was it that he knew that caused him to act in the radical (from the roots up) way he did?
The Buddha is linked to the Dharma, which generally refers to both the Teaching of the Way to Enlightenment and the "Laws of Nature." Human society currently acts in ways that cause real harm to the rest of nature, and this cannot be wise in Dharma. More

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