Ed, Anything and everything COULD be regarded as relevant to zen practice. That determination is up to you.
Do you think this posting is relevant to your zen practice, or would be relevant or helpful to someone else's zen practice? If so how? I'm much more interested in what YOU have to say about things then what URI AVNERY has to say. .Bill! From: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com [mailto:zen_fo...@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of ED Sent: Thursday, September 30, 2010 10:16 AM To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com Subject: Re: [Zen] Should we disturb zazen practice with issues like this? Bill, I hear you. Since zen has nothing to say about anything, it is hard to know what to say about zen. Can this article below be regarded as relevant in any way to zen? --ED September 27, 2010 Reflections of a Professional Grumbler Gandhi's Wisdom By URI AVNERY SURFING THE television channels, I came across an interview with the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi on an American network (Fox - would you believe it). "My grandfather told us to love the enemy even while fighting him," he said, "he fought against the British resolutely, but loved the British." (I quote from memory.) My immediate reaction was baloney, the pious wish of do-gooders! But then I suddenly remembered that in my youth I had felt exactly the same, when I joined the Irgun at the age of 15. I liked the English (as we called all the British), the English language and English culture, and I was ready to put my life on the line in order to drive the English out of our country. When I said so to the Irgun's recruitment committee, while sitting with a bright light shining in my eyes, I was almost rejected. But the grandson's words set me to thinking more seriously. Can one make peace with an opponent while hating him? Is peace possible at all without a positive attitude towards the other side? * * * ON THE face of it, the answer is "yes". Self-styled "realists" and "pragmatists" will say that peace is a matter of political interests, that feelings should not be involved. (Such "realists" are people who cannot imagine another reality, and such "pragmatists" are people who cannot think in the longer term.) As is well-know, one makes peace with enemies. One makes peace in order to stop a war. War is the realm of hate, it dehumanizes the foe. In every war, the enemy is portrayed as sub-human, evil and cruel by nature. Peace is supposed to terminate the war, but does not promise to change the attitude towards yesterday's enemy. We stop killing him, but that does not mean that we start loving him. When we reach the conclusion that it is in our interest to stop the war rather than to go on with it, this does not mean that our attitude towards the enemy has changed. We have here an inbuilt paradox: the thought of peace arises while the war is still going on. It follows that peace is planned by those who are still at war, who are still in the grip of the war mentality. That can twist their thinking. The result can be a monster, like the infamous Treaty of Versailles that ended World War I. It trampled on the vanquished Germany, robbed her and, worst of all, humiliated her. Many historians believe that this treaty bears much of the blame for the outbreak of World War II, which was even more devastating. (As a child I grew up in Germany under the dark shadow of the Versailles treaty, so I know what I am talking about.) * * * MAHATMA GANDHI understood this. He was not only a very moral person, but also a very wise one (if there really is any difference). I did not agree with his opposition to resisting Nazi Germany by force, but I always admired his genius as the leader of Indian liberation. He realized that the main task of a liberation leader is to shape the mentality of the people he wishes to liberate. When hundreds of millions of Indians were confronting a few tens of thousands of Britons, the main problem was not to defeat the British, but to get the Indians themselves to want liberation and a life in freedom and harmony. To make peace without hatred, without a longing for revenge, with an open heart, ready to be reconciled with yesterday's enemy. Gandhi himself was only partially successful in this. But his wisdom illuminated the path of many. It shaped people like Nelson Mandela, who established peace without hatred and without revenge, and Martin Luther King, who called for reconciliation between black and white. We, too, have much to learn from this wisdom. <snip> Uri Avnery is an Israeli writer and peace activist with Gush Shalom. He is a contributor to CounterPunch's book <http://www.easycartsecure.com/CounterPunch/CounterPunch_Books.html> The Politics of Anti-Semitism. <http://www.counterpunch.org/avnery09272010.html> http://www.counterpunch.org/avnery09272010.html --- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, <billsm...@...> wrote: > > Ed, > > > > I personally don't think these kinds of posts are appropriate for the Zen > Forum. > > > > I read the post and thought it was very informative and interesting. I'm > better informed for reading it. But.the better we focus the posting on the > Zen Forum to zen, I think the better the forum will be. > > > > If the forum gets too `general' then it runs the risk of being diluted and > might soon become just another general bulletin board rather than a forum > focused on zen. > > > > .Bill! > September 28, 2010 > > > The Sin of Independence > > > Why Doesn't the US Talk to Iran? > > > By ISMAEL HOSSEIN-ZADEH and KARLA HANSEN __________ Information from ESET NOD32 Antivirus, version of virus signature database 5491 (20100930) __________ The message was checked by ESET NOD32 Antivirus. http://www.eset.com