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Archive for the ‘Ethics’ Category

What can be achieved if we work at it.

What can be achieved if we work at it.

Weeding the Garden.

Pauline at work.

Pauline at work.

Every problem is an opportunity for growth. Life is a problem if we think what is taught in the school room is all we need to know. Learning should extend beyond the classroom. We must think for our self and look for facts to substantiate what we are told. We need more than blind faith in others.

Jack plaing in the garden.

Jack playing in the garden.

Weeds grow and flourish with no assistance from the gardener. In the garden of our mind weeds can thrive if we are not aware and constantly weeding out the unwanted negative thoughts.

Zen Garden ,note the tree shadow on the rock.

Zen Garden ,note the tree shadow on the rock.

Plant instead seeds of love, hope, peace and contentment. They will grow and produce medicine that will cure hate and despair and calming the stress in our life. Grow strong by planting good wholesome seeds.

Worker in Zen garden.

Worker in Zen garden.

Focus your mind on good and feed good thoughts into your mind as everything you experience influences your mind either positively or negatively.

Zen green tranquillity.

Zen green tranquillity.

Distance yourself from the toxic poison, that is too plentiful, in the modern world.

Weeds are always trying to invade.

Weeds are always trying to invade.

In technical terms all the sensory perception you come in contact with affect the neural activity in your brain. Repeated experiences leave lasting changes in the brain. You could say repeated thoughts and actions form habits that can be beneficial or detrimental, depending on what you come in contact with.

Zigzagging bright contrast.

Zigzagging bright contrast.

 To find happiness, peace and contentment you need to plant good seeds in the garden of your mind and repeatedly weed out weeds that are overrunning and destroying your beautiful, peaceful garden.

A feast for the eyes.

A feast for the eyes.

The underlying cause of all life’s wonders and woes, man has created or destroyed, all the joy or pain can be traced to what man has planted in his brain, the garden of his mind.

A joy to behold.

A joy to behold.

Over centuries of history man has planted mostly weeds in the garden of his mind. The seeds of ignorance, fear, greed and hate flourished. Ignorance created gods, fear created submission to shaman, witch doctors and priests that claimed they could communicate with a god or the gods. Greed, hate and ignorance flourished under these conditions till the renaissance.

A star for perfection.

A star for perfection.

These mistakes must be put behind us. We should think for ourselves not blindly believing comments from witch doctors, spin doctors, or media rubbish.

Nourishment from the garden.

Nourishment from the garden.

A point I made in my post ‘Elvis Lives’ shows one way to calculate the truth. Occam’s Razor is another problem solving principal that can be explained this way, ‘assume that the most straight forward or simplest explanation is the most likely to be the truth.’ I believe looking at people’s past history and their motives for making a statement helps make a correct decision on the value of their words.

The love of a garden...

The love of a garden…

Try to avoid most of the unsavoury, think and act positive. One suggestion is watch the news but not every time the same dreadful news is repeated. My wish is by keeping actively weeding you garden you harvest an abundance of nutrious vegetables, fruit and the flowers bloom in splendour.

is a garden of love.

is a garden of love.

 

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This lets you know where we are.

This lets you know where we are.

Am I a Buddhist?

Pauline in action.

Pauline in action.

Pauline’s post about Watt Buddharangsee, meaning Move or Change Places Temple, prompted me to think, All schools of Buddhism have the basic logical (Dharma) teachings of The Buddha. The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path.

This photo shows the wheel with eight spokes.

This shrine shows the wheel with eight spokes.

The countries of South East Asia that have adopted Buddhism have incorporated their own cultures and customs in it. This resulted in many different varieties of Buddhism.

Inside the Stupa.

Inside the Stupa showing a stained glass Buddha window.

Still the fundamental teachings are the same. To abstain from all kinds of evil, promote all that is beneficial and purify the mind.

Stupa out side.

Stupa out side.

To understand all things are impermanent and subject to change, abstain from all kinds of evil and personally develop ethical behaviour, as outlined in the Buddha’s basic teaching. Consequently there have been no major conflicts between different Buddhist religious groups.

Pauline put this photo in her post.

Pauline put this photo in her post.

The three major Abrahamic religions conversely are in aggressive conflict for domination. Regardless of the fact that their God, the one they claim to be almighty, condemns killing.

Why is this abandoned little church?

Why is this little church abandoned?

Perhaps Lau Tzu had it right when he said “The Tao that can be named is not the true Tao.” (The Tao is the inexplicable force that keeps the whole cosmos in equilibrium.) Another aspect of Taoism is yin and yang, when yin and yang are in balance it is believed to be perfect harmony. This is described as Wu Wei meaning in flow with nature.

The trees were an ideal setting for the Stupa.

The trees were an ideal setting for the Stupa.

I am not a Taoist, Buddhist, Hindu and defiantly not one of the many factions of the Abrahamic dogmas, Jews, Christians or Muslims with their multitude of denomination all arguing for dominance.

The trees looked good from all angles.

The trees looked good from all angles.

I believe they all have the same good basic ethics but much of the good is lost in the belief in the supernatural, other myths and wishful thinking.

The monks do not use a blower on the leaves.

The monks do not use a noisy blower on the leaves.

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Book Inn..

Book Inn..

Slow down don’t slow up.

Lately I have been absorbed reading instead of writing. The books I have been reading have made me realise how little I know. And yet I am far more knowledgeable than I used to be, at least I now know how to enjoy life.

What else is it for?

What else is it for?

Knowing the unsatisfactory changing nature of life. I do not cling to things and am contented rather than happy. My lifelong goal is self improvement, acquiring knowledge rather than possessions.

I gave my copy away I went to the library revise.

 I went to the library to read it again I gave my copy away.

I would describe this as contentment rather than happiness. Learning to appreciation the good in my life.

 To make you smile.

To make you smile.

Ignorance is the cause of unhappiness. To enjoy life one must be disciplined in doing what is necessary to stay healthy in both body and mind. The one thing we should not be ignorant of is nothing lasts. Everything has a use by date.

You may not buy this one it is a gift.

You may not buy this one it is a gift, complements of Buddhist society Malaysia. 

We can prolong the life of things by maintaining them properly, then they will serve us well. To care for things we need the knowledge to know how. Over the years I have learned a few life skills.

It is no secret any more.

It is no secret any more.

I try to pass them on, but you can find better qualified writers than me. You just need to be very selective in sorting out whose opinion to follow. Is it fact or fiction, is it rubbish I am feeding my mind on? Both body and mind need wholesome nourishment to stay healthy.

1932 the bridge the hands I had to be in this photo.

1932 the bridge the hands and hope I had to be in this photo.

I am pleased how I am doing, keeping fit and inspiring others. They made me ‘member of the month’ at the Burleigh, World Gym. I was requested to write this comment. I now am fitted out in really smart gym cloths all part of the honour.

The matador, no bull.

The matador, no bull.

“Who is the old bloke sweating on the x trainer?”world gym

“That is Jack he used to be a construction worker, a rigger to be precise.”

Great game for a young bloke to earn a crust. Plenty of exercise climbing up on the steel purlins, riding the crane hook. Man those were the days before the safety regulations took all the buzz out of it.

The problem is if you do a good job they promote you. Most of the fun goes out of it and it can get stressful.

Tim wants to be like me, when he has been 83 years at the gym.

Tim wants to be like me, when he has been 83 years at the gym.

The way around that is go to a gym and get rid of the stress. Get the endorphin circulating, it is better than chocolate. Oh! You see eye candy everywhere in a gym, a treat for every taste, the blokes and the girls. The great people that you become friends with in a gym like World Gym, Burleigh, is another incentive to workout.

Note the caption on the wall.

Note the caption on the wall.

I am 83 but when I am mixing in with all these positive, fit people I can forget I am past my use by date. Three score and ten I never put too much faith in ancient writing and doctors are ok in an emergency but do not leave it up to them to keep you fit. You are better of at the gym.

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We will start off cool.

We will start off cool.

Habitual walking.

Cool morning Yoga meditation on Bondi Beach.

Cool morning Yoga meditation on Bondi Beach.

Habitual walking is not as Thich Nhat Hanh, in his beautifully written book “Peace is Every Step.“ describes walking. What he describes is actually walking meditation. If you are an active person you may prefer this rather than sitting.

Some habits are not wise.

Some habits are not wise when you are not so sure-footed.

Mindful walking is a cognitive process you are conscious and aware. If we repeat anything often enough it becomes a habit. This is very useful it enables us to become skilled operators. As long as we do not get too inattentive and become prone to problems.

It could have been worse.

It could have been worse.

Habitual actions describe how we fly through life in a fog. We do not actually see where we are going we are traveling on auto pilot. Our thoughts are on some thing in the future or past, not focused on what we are doing.  Meditation teaches us how to stay focused. Those thoughtless actions are the cause of pain and suffering.

A stitch in me wastes time, but helps healing.

A stitch in me wastes time, but helps healing.

The Buddha Siddhartha Gautama said the first step on The Eight Fold Path is Understanding, next is right thinking the next that automatically follows is right actions. Then he discusses right occupation The Buddha is only interested in getting you into a good job. By good he means harmless and beneficial.

This is a good clean job, not paid for sitting down.

This is a good clean job, paid for sitting up.

You may be more interested in getting a well-paid occupation. I would also advise doing what you enjoy to earn an honest crust. Then making dough is a pleasure. People often say what line of work are you in. They used to say out on the construction site, “What’s your game, mate?” Back then, in the good old days, before tight safety regulations took the virtuosity out of it. I would say, “I am a rigger.” I loved my high position looking down on everyone. I was a young show off and got my thrills riding on the crane hook.

Climbing up steps to operate a tower crane, we used to use the hook and climb in the window.

Climbing up steps to operate a tower crane, we used to use the hook and climb in the window, in the good old days.

The young extroverts today (I dare not call then show-offs) have to hoon-around to get a buzz. Putting the public in danger and they do not get paid for it. Instead it costs them, for petrol their motorbike or car and on top of that they get fined.

The police love hoons, they are keeping them in a good exciting job.

The police love hoons, they are keeping them in a good exciting job.

Well I suppose they could say, “It is better than walking.”

I should have been walking.

I should have been walking.

The next steps to consider are right effort, right concentration and mindfulness, not to stepping off the path. It is human to be unmindful and inevitable to step off the path. When we take a wrong step it is no good placing blame or fretting. Just pick yourself up and try again. The same as you do in meditation when your mind wanders.  You can falter but never fail to try.

It is safe in a sheltered harbour but ships were not made for that.

It is safe in a sheltered harbour but ships were not made for that.

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Holding hands in paradise.

Holding hands in paradise.

Wake up call.

Wisdom mixed with folklore.

Wisdom mixed with folklore.

The wisdom of the sages
has been passed down through the ages.
Still we do not know,
Love is the way to go.

Rainbows must have been a real puzzle.

Rainbows must have been a real puzzle.

Man could not explain,
the sunshine and the rain.
Only Gods could know,
so they were made to show.

I would rather marching girls.

I would rather marching girls.

The perplexing mystery of all creation,
Was solved by gods from every nation.
Then the arguments began,
who had the correct plan.

Is this the right foot.

Is this the right foot.

To keep control it would seem,
One God must be made supreme.
His foot prints in the sands of time,
still appear to many as sublime.

An awesome example of nature.

An awesome example of nature.

Mother Nature still exists,
though patriarchal Gods persist.
The puzzle still remains today,
Can science now show the way?

A digital camera, computer and Photoshop technology.

A digital camera, computer and Photoshop technology.

Or will technology be used to fight,
to see who’s God is in the right.
All the good we have today
Could just be thrown away.

Do not waste the free gifts of Mother Nature.

Do not waste the free gifts of Mother Nature.

Appreciation, love and trust,
in today’s world is a must.
Ignorance, greed, fear and hate,
Mother Nature will not tolerate.

You can copy my photo, the real thing cannot be replaced.

You can copy my photo, the real thing cannot be replaced.

Mother Nature is eternally sublime.
Man is mortal and will pass on in time.
A grain of sand or the starry sky,
it will not matter as time passes by.

How many grains of sand or stars in the sky.

How many grains of sand or stars in the sky.

All the blood sweat and tears,
all our stupid arguments and fears.
Why waste our time on pie in the sky?
When it is only a few years before we die.

Another example of Mother Natures, sun rise, sun set are constant reminders.

Another example of Mother Natures, sun rise, sun set are constant reminders.

Do not cry, we never die, we only change.
Atoms do not perish they only rearrange.
We may turn into dust mites floating on the morning breeze,
or into song birds singing in the tall green trees.

In a tree or warbling on my windowsill.

In a tree or warbling on my windowsill.

Let us prepare here today,
to live our life in a better way.
Caring and sharing in peace and calm.
Wake up! these words are your clock alarm.

Technology can be used in better way, I have fun  doing my best.

Technology can be used in better way, I have fun doing my best.

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Wild but not angry.

Wild but not angry.

Back home grazing on the plains.

He looks friendly.

He looks friendly.

There once was a wild buffalo that roamed the muddy swamp lands of the young mind.

Rice field in Thailand.

Rice field in Thailand.

Things must change the swamp was drained the ox was tamed. It was a savage youthful game the picador, matador or bull, one must meet disaster. Death was flaunted in those adventurous, hectic years of joy and tears.

This is not a bullfight.

This is not a bullfight.

Let us not forget those naïve years and judge unfairly the youth of today. To tame the bull takes calm and patient contemplation. In time with practice a state of peace and contentment can be achieved. The ox is free from yoke and harness to roam the fertile grassland of the mind. It is now tamed and does not stray as in those stressful, boisterous party years.

An attractive flower.

An attractive flower.

Life is a challenging jungle to adventurer in, full of wonderful exotic things to tempt us from the virtuous safe path. To become the prey of some greedy hateful thing and be devoured by the beast of ignorance.

Lunch time on the Adelaide River.

Lunch time on the Adelaide River.

Carried away by the turbulent flow of life we desire the flowers blooming on the roadside. These flowers never last they wither fade and die. We crave for more and are led astray into the danger zone. We can be aware that we are straying from the path this is not enough we must be mindful of the danger in these misadventures and return to focus on the destination.

Showing respect to the Buddha.

Showing respect to the Buddha.

There are always wondrous temptations to distract the unmindful from the path that leads to the fertile grassy plain where true understanding resides and peace and contentment reigns. This is where the calm serene ox grazes.

Fertile land.

Fertile land.

 You may see this as bull but this is wisdom to the wise.

My favourite Buddhist quote.

My favourite Buddhist quote.

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Running free.

Running free.

Thirst.

Beautiful water, falls for you.

Beautiful water, falls for you.

The pure sweet water skips and dances down the mountain. People cup their hands and drink and cleanse themselves. Then a clever engineer wanting hydro power, built a dam. Chemists added colour and flavours to the water and they called this progress. The simple people had to be taught what was good, this they called promotion. The advertising industry was born. This came at a price in time and effort that needed to be paid for. The naive accepted the cost of the system without question and those running the scheme called it capitalism and were richly rewarded.

All need water.

All need water.

Lower down the rungs of the hierarchy questions of corruption in top management were raised and high profits and exorbitant executives salaries.  One who knew how the setup worked decided he would fence off a spring of water and control this gift of nature. He now had divine right to this water. He called it Holy water, without his blessing it did no good. He did not need to sell shares to construct dams, a fence was too easy. The money rolled in because gentle people believed his story and promises of everlasting life. Fencing operations flourished around springs everywhere with religious fervour. Guidelines were needed to control the lawless competition and keep the people submissive. Religion put in place laws to live by so peace would prevail. The commercial interests added their input and used police and soldiers to enforce them. Lawyers, barristers and judges were needed to rule on points of law and impose an appropriate penalty for those disregarding  their laws. Not trusting in an almighty god to do the job. This system was adopted in many countries and took over from war lords, dictators and royalty. It was called democracy.

Farms need water the fences are questionable.

Farms need water the fences are questionable.

Thinkers did not accept the divine laws, they were called scientists. Those that questioned the manmade laws were outlaws. The scientists had theories, if they could be proven they became facts, till in time some were disproven. They are still debating the issues to this day. This was called progress, it is something we do not know how to stop. Scientific discoveries and wondrous inventions have taken man out of this world. To live like a god, a god that has forgotten he is mortal, grasping, clinging and hording more than is needed to sustain life.

CSIRO museum Canberra, Commonwealth scientific research org.

CSIRO museum Canberra, Commonwealth scientific research org.

Hording riches and treasures creates envy, jealousy and hatred. The strong decided they would take what they wanted from the vulnerable. The clever invented patriotism and instilled fear in the people to heroically defend their land.  There was no shortage of exuberant, youthful warriors, on either side, fighting for different causes, but often praying to the same god for his blessings.

Another angle on water.

Another angle on water.

 Where did all our problems spring from?  Not being satisfied to quench the thirst, desiring more than necessary, wanting power over others. All things are passing as water in the mountain stream, the hand cannot grasp. All things are subject to change and wanting them to remain the same is a futile effort. This wanting is the problem, it is the cause of unhappiness. Man has been stirring the water till it is contaminated with muddy greed, jealousy and hate.

Sea Gulls need fresh sweet water.

Sea Gulls need fresh sweet water.

We need to calm down, be still, till the water settles and we will see clearly the errors of our ways. Understanding, caring and sharing, love and compassion can save us from drowning in our own pool of possessions. To once more let the mountain stream flow free for all to enjoy. Terra nullus,  the land belongs to no one.

Still water is needed to reflect.

Still water is needed to reflect.

 

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