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Posts Tagged ‘religion’

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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It is Chrystal clear.

It is Chrystal clear.

Miraculously Interconnected.

Misty morning sun.

Misty morning sun.

The sun shines, the rain falls and the seed germinates. The sun provides the energy, the earth the nutrients and the rain the moisture. The seed draws its power from the sun, its moisture from the rain and nutrients from the earth. This is a simple explanation a detailed account would be too complex and confusing.

Ebb and flow.

Ebb and flow.

The female produces the egg from the nutrients in her body, obtained from the nourishment from the food she has eaten. Likewise the male produces semen. When a couple mate only the strongest one of millions of sperm will reach the egg first. We are the winners in the human race the first out of those millions to live as human beings. Transformed into beings out of the vast cosmos but still part of the interconnected whole.

Reminder of the reality of impermanence.

Reminder of the reality of impermanence.

  The flower of life is consumed or withers and is transformed into compost. Returning as nutrients to the earth this is the cycle of life. Nothing is wasted or destroyed it only changes form. Man has progressed in understanding over the last two or three thousand years. Empty space is not empty and the colour of the flower is not the colour we see, we see the colour that has not been absorbed by the flower it is the same with any other thing we look at.  We now realise the world is not flat or the centre of everything.

Inside the cave.

Inside the cave.

Primitive man needed an explanation for natural phenomena.  Man has an insatiable curiosity and a big ego, if we do not know we think up a logical hypotheses and work with it till it is proven or disproven. Thunder, lightening,  droughts and floods were explained with the invention of gods.  Today some of the gods are folk law, others have become myths, others fight on for supremacy. While some men still struggle searching for answers, others pray to their gods.

Above the storm clouds.

Above the storm clouds.

A monolithic single God could be the way to find peace but first we need to agree on which god and which prophet, or we will still have problems like Israel and Palestine.

Behind the clouds the sun still shines.

Behind the clouds the sun still shines.

Everything in time must change, when will people change with the times?

Rainbows appear.

Rainbows appear.

It is time we realised nature is a delicate balance everything is an interconnected part of the whole cosmos. Nature is infinite man is mortal. To declare war on nature by meddling in its balance is hastening our extinction. Man is a part of the natural system but not an essential part. Man has become a parasite that is in danger of killing its host.

In nature all is subject to change.

In nature all is subject to change.

We have to conserve, buying only what we need and not waste precious resources on war. Our commercial system has to change from a greedy, throwaway society to a caring compassionate one.

All things are passing like waves passing.

All things are passing like waves passing.

Not only the flower withers and dies, all things are subject to change, all things are passing. Completing the circle of life and becoming nourishment for the new eternal life. As Mr Spock said to Captain Kirk,” There is life on the planet Captain but not as we know it.” Another helpful quote “The Tao that can be described is not the real Tao.” These words are attributed to Lau Tzu. Along with religions I will put all the gods in the too hard basket; I dare not put them in the egg basket as gods are often violent and vengeful while eggs are fragile and vulnerable.

"I protect my eggs."

“I protect my eggs.”

Man does not need threats or bribes from a god and a religious hierarchy to goad them to live in harmony. What is needed is the understanding that all things are constantly changing and interdependent. One then realises that greed, hate and ignorance are the cause of discord. The survival of the fittest is misunderstood, the reality is the survival of a species is trust and sharing. There is no action without a like reaction. The reaction to force is resistance, love and kindness is not met with resistance. If one wants respect they must be respectable, what one gives one gets, this is the law of karma.

My view of one distant perspective.

My view of one distant perspective.

Born out of the world from the earth I came. Into the earth I will return home. This is the cycle of life; let no one mourn the change. Clinging and wanting what is impermanent is against the laws of nature and brings only grief, change is unavoidable.  When the transition comes to me, do not cry, I have been freed from my body. The person is now as the grass that grows; cows may turn the grass to milk. The flowers will bloom; I will be pushing up those daises. The birds will still sing in the entire vast array that makes a day and the non-existent separate I will be once more united with the all.

Can you see a cow and calf?

Can you see another animal eating with the cow?

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A step in the right direction.

A step in the right direction.

Visit to Santa.

“What would you like for Christmas?”

“Bring me what Jesus wanted.”

“What was that?”

“Peace on Earth.”

“Be reasonable that is not what I am here for, there is no profit in peace.”

“It does not cost the Earth.”

“You are a problem child; ask for something expensive that will help the economy.”

“I would like good-will to everyone.”

“Look kid, stop being difficult, you must have seen something you want advertised on TV.”

“I have all I need; there are people in the world that need the necessities of life.”

“If you don’t want anything, why are you taking up my time?”

“Respect for my Grandfather he is going senile, like second childhood, he believes in Santa Clause, I  believe in God, Jesus and the holy spirit but not in Santa Clause.”

“You are not a child, but you are still not an adult.”

“Why not?”

“Because you still believe in myths, so don’t waste my time.”

St Maries Cathedral Sydney.

St Mary’s Cathedral Sydney.

I made up this story between a shopping complex Santa and a sincere Christian upholding the true values of Christmas. I do not believe any myths, the point of my story is we do not have to believe to have respect. Nor should we disregard the positive things found in other people’s beliefs. The peace and compassion Jesus taught is the same ethical values Jews and Muslims revere. Hindus and Buddhists also promote love and kindness. The conversation shows how the kindness of giving at Christmas has been over commercialized. Read carefully and you will note kindness does not cost the earth, but buying unnecessary luxuries does cost the environment. Giving to those in need will promote peace on earth and reduce hate.

Sydney Town Hall and Christmas lights.

Sydney Town Hall and Christmas lights.

We must grow up, in the past ignorance, fear, hatred and greed have caused conflict and wars. Calling other people’s beliefs myths is not nice, we have a right to our opinion but we must be reciprocal. If we cannot accept some ones opinion we should still respect their feelings. Wars have been caused because of dogmatic people who ironically disregard their own moral values and kill. Greedy people exploit the situation promoting distrust, fear and hate giving religion a bad name. Religion was invented to promote law and order and it has caused chaos.

sydney Town Hall celabrates Christmas.

Sydney Town Hall Christmas lights.

Christmas is a holy day for Christians, for others it is just a holiday and is a wonderful concept if we are sensible and show respect. If we are foolish Christmas can be a disaster. Please be mindful of your action, balance your behavior. Too much Christmas spirit could be your undoing. Be thoughtful in your giving, it need not be expensive, it is the thought you put into picking an appropriate present that counts. We should remember it is not our birthday, so we should not expect gifts. The joy is in giving and the importance of a gift is to expect nothing in return, otherwise it is a deal, a transaction and business as usual.

Chinese Santa at sydney China town.

Chinese Santa at Sydney China town.

Being respectful for others promotes goodwill, if we show respect we will be respected. We do not need to accept everything if it conflicts with our view. Still we can use what is beneficial wherever it is found and accept the gift graciously. Christmas is a holiday I look on as a Christian gift of kindness, opening our hearts to everyone. The best of the Christmas spirit should be practiced on everyone’s birthday. Then there would be peace on earth. Imagine how wonderful it would be if we emulated those admirable qualities attributed to Jesus.

Christmas department stor window display.

Christmas department store window display.

There are things prevalent at Christmas not advantageous to our wellbeing but these negative practices are not only exhibited at Christmas. Over indulgence, wild extravagance and stupidity, no need to rave on, all these cravings are spoiling our wonderful world. In Australia whatever you hold as sacred virtues can be practiced at Christmas, as we are a multicultural country. The mistakes of the past are many, hopefully they can be laid to rest and as a democracy we can be tolerant, for regardless of one’s ideology we are all from the same source, we are one, we all bleed the same colour.

"Look Mummy."

“Look Mummy.”

Tell Santa I would like a small piece of Christmas pudding and want a big piece of peace to share with everyone.

Children enjoy window shopping.

Children enjoy window shopping.

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Sign at Parliament House Canberra.

Sign at Parliament House Canberra.

Education and Empathy,

Sign I liked, Parliament House Canberra.

Sign I liked, Parliament House Canberra.

Clifford’s Credo is easy to understand but not many people apply it in life. Quote, “It is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence.” In other words all beliefs should be based on logic and reason. William Kingdon Clifford also coined the phrase “Mind stuff” the simple elements of which consciousness is composed. Also the phrase “Tribal Self” relating to upholding the tribe’s welfare and this gives the tribe an advantage, these principles promote the groups survival. Natural selection will in the long run preserve those tribes. The “survival of the fittest” when discussing Darwin’s theory is of then quoted and the advantages in cooperation and altruistic behavior are disregarded.

John Percival made  these angles out of clay.

John Percival made these angles out of clay.

http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/col/artist/469

Hamilton’s rule is actually a formula that specifies the conditions under which reproductive altruism evolves; r x B > C. This states that aid-giving behavior can evolve when the indirect benefits of helping relatives compensate the aid giver for any personal loss in reproduction incurred by helping. In 2010 experiments carried out supported this theory. altruistic behavior is often seen in birds I have seen birds act as if injured to lead me away from their nest. A lone Sulphur Crested Cockatoo can be seen high in a tree ready to give warning to the flock having a picnic on the farmer’s crop. Without getting into abstract mathematics if we are observant we can see examples of altruistic actions in all species.

Patterns in nature are marvellous.

designed by nature are marvellous.

Pascal’s Wager is a bit like having your cake and eating it too. It proposes that humans bet with their lives on the existence or non-existence of God and the sensible thing is to believe in God as there is little to lose if wrong, but the non believer pays a hell of a price if he is mistaken. Blaise Pascle was also a mathematician and obviously a calculating one. He was no doubt referring to the Christian God; Pascle lived 1623 to 1662 about the time of the Thirty Year War, initially between the Protestant and Catholic states battling it out. The Inquisition, arguments and many bloody wars are the result of disputes over this God.

Nature vast and beautiful. W.A.

Nature vast and beautiful. W.A.

There are three religions that believe in this same God, but cannot agree on the details. Judaism has the Hebrew Bible; Christians have an added New Testament with Jesus playing the lead role. Islam’s sacred book is the Quran. I have heard it being recited, it sounds beautiful, but I could not understand a word of it. Except I do know Allah is the Muslim name for God and Muhammad is their prophet. When these three religions get their act together and can agree and live in peace. I may consider Pascal’s Wager till then I will abide with Clifford’s Credo and except Hamilton’s Rule.

Natures endless beauty.

Natures endless beauty.

There are many other philosophical hypotheses, to pursue and consider. The Daia Theory that organisms interact with their inorganic surroundings on Earth to form a self-regulating, complex system that contributes to maintaining the conditions for life on the Earth. This theory was developed in the nineteen seventies by microbiologists. The name Gaia was coined by James Lovelock or Lynn Margulis, who developed this idea. The London Geographical Society in 2006 awarded Lovelock a medal for his work in Earth systems science and geology.

Beauty close to mother Earth.

Beauty close to mother Earth.

Gaia was the goddess of earth in ancient Greek religion. We now say Greek mythology and some say all gods are mythical beings as they do not comply with Clifford’s Credo. Many people will not listen to educated people who have studied paleontology, geology, mathematics and science.

This angelic fungi had a mysterious  glowing hallo.

This angelic fungi had a mysterious glowing halo.

Santa Claus will be delivering toys to the well-behaved children this year. Adults know the truth about Santa this will not affect their conduct. They no longer need threats and promise to behave in an ethical way. The mentally ill need understanding and the ignorant need education ancient myths have been tested over a long time and clearly do not work.

Just another day in paradise.

Just another day in paradise.

  Scientific minds have brought about all the modern technology that has made our life easier. Consider science as a savior, science has not caused the problems we face in the world today. They are caused by ignorance, greed and hate, wake up, war is our ignorance fueled by arrogance, hate and greed. War is our greatest environmental hazard, empathy is the antidote.  By empathy I mean the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Do not blame others, science or gods, the buck stops with you, in the sense of you as the demanding ego.

The wonders the dragon fly started life under water.

The wonders the dragonfly started life under water.

Please visit the links I have added and from there catch your own waves surfing the network in cyber space till your curiosity finds contentment. What a wondrous world science has given us to explore. Do not neglect this wonderful opportunity to learn. Why does man invariably abuse the incredible gifts from both nature and science? The answer to this billion dollar question is ignorance, ego, greed and hate. Education and empathy are the best weapons in life’s battle to survive. 

 Leave nothing more.

Leave nothing more.

 

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True Aussie King of Mareeba.

True Aussie King of Mareeba.

Think, Question and Act.

A fan or a follower of Buddha.

A fan or a follower of Buddha.

I was born into a Christian family, had my parents been Muslims I would have read the Koran instead of the Bible. The omnipotent, supreme creator endowed me with a questioning mind. Therefore I questioned the patriarchal religions handed down from Abraham. I had no faith in miracles I wanted more factual evidence. Why would an all-knowing God put a tree of knowledge at Adam and Eves disposal, tell them not to eat the fruit, knowing they would? God does work in mysterious ways and it is probably good that he does or I would be, naked as Lady Godiva, living off nature’s garden, just like the indigenous people, before the white missionaries arrived.

Indigenous didgeridoo artist.

Indigenous didgeridoo artist.

Lao Tzu, is credited with the “Tao Te Chan,” a book the Taoist follow. Translated versions of Lao Tzu’s words have obscured some of the sage’s message. He writes about the Tao the inexplicable power that keeps the universe in equilibrium, He said “The Tao that can be described is not the real Tao.” Could this inexplicable power, be the unanswerable answer to mans search for God? “Wu–wie!” Is that the “Way”? Another Taoist idea is Yin Yang explaining the relationship and balance of all things.

Krishna devote.

Krishna devote.

The Hindus have one God but to accommodate everyone he can appear as any deity one desires. Consequently there is an incredible number of Hindu gods and Hinduism has a lot of other complex things that are hard to fathom but there is a wealth of wisdom and goodness to be found in Bhagavad Gita.

Miniature Buddha image.

Miniature Buddha image.

Buddha was a wise man his ethical ‘Eight Fold Path’ is worth following. He was only interested in finding a way out of life’s pain and suffering. After he died his teaching became a religion, to qualify as a religion a God is needed. It was then that Siddhartha was promoted by some of his followers. Buddhism spread and picked up other local myths and beliefs making finding useful wisdom difficult.

A dragon added for luck.

A dragon added for luck.

Major dogmas agree on the basic principles promoting good and not killing their fellow-man, some beliefs extend that to all sentient beings. To focus on what we agree on and not arguing would allow us to progress in harmony. Replacing fear with understanding, hate with kindness. Then the ordinary citizen would not be manipulated by the greedy that profit from war, they make the armaments that destroy and then prosper from rebuilding.

Making war look heroic.

Making war look heroic.

http://www.thebigview.com/buddhism/fourtruths.html

I will not accept any religion that condones war and intolerance. The Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama or the ‘Sage of the Shakyas”, was a pacifist. He never entered into the creation debate. The Buddha was like a doctor, interested in finding a cure for pain and suffering. He first found the cause of the suffering. Then he prescribes a cure. The causes he outlined in “The Four Noble Truths”. He prescribed a cure “The Eight Fold Path”, a logical self disciplined guide to reach the ultimate goal of enlightenment. If practiced diligently peace and contentment is attained. In Buddhist term Novena, described in English as perfect peace and understanding or total enlightenment.

Colourful Hindu stained glass.

Colourful Hindu stained glass.

Buddhism was borne out of Hinduism. The Buddha and his teaching are shrouded in myth, time has distorted and added to his words of wisdom. Buddha’s philosophy has become a religion. Buddhism spread to China and other lands. China added ideas of *Confucius, the Tao and ancestral worship. Buddhism has become much like other religions, a group of revered leaders arguing about technicalities irrelevant to ethics. They are more concerned with their authority and power than peace and contentment.

Colourful Christain stained glass.

Colourful Christian stained glass.

Sincerity and practice are more important than the dogma. The helpful, benevolent action the belief inspires is what matters most. We all need a guide to follow to find peace. Do not let your guiding belief be distorted by fear, greed or hate.

When yin and yang are in balance it is perfect.

When yin and yang are in balance it is perfect.

               

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This is a Photoshop mirical.

This is a Photoshop mirical.

   Do you believe in fairies?

down to earth view of our garden.

down to earth view of our garden.

If you have read my blog you will know I do not believe in the supernatural, just the facts. So there are no fairies at the bottom of our garden. But some strange things are happening a photo of a dish of fruit was gmailed to me from Google, taken on my iphone, great idea, Google you have done it again. This is not magic but it is close to it.

The wonderful world.

The wonderful world.

Things these days make it hard to believe our eyes. Working on my P.C. and out of the blue a message comes up on the monitor telling me not to switch off, updates are down loading from Microsoft. Has the machine got a mind of its own? There is a logical reason I just do not know all the tricks. I do know some of Photoshop’s tricks that look like magic.

The Hyacinth flower lasts only one day.

The Hyacinth flower lasts only one day.

I want you to reassure me there are no fairies, elves or little people invading my home. I have some little people decorating the garden made out of clay they are not to blame. You can check them out if you like.

In our water garden.

In our water garden.

Could some mischievous goblin have taken my camera into the garden and had some fun at my expense. Look at these pictures; I am now over eighty years young, could I bend down low enough to take them.

Under our van Matilda.

Under our van Matilda.

Pauline my pommepal believes I am capable of getting up to many things but doubts that I could get down that low. There has to be a logical explanation, may be I am getting old-timers dis-ease. Do you think Pauline is having a joke with me? This is something for you to explain, who took the photos? How could someone take photos from an ant’s perspective? When I put photos in my blog I always use my own or acknowledge. As I did in the post The Montage of Religion to make that montage I got some of the pictures from the internet.

Reflect on this photo it is not Photoshoped.

Reflect on this photo it is not Photoshoped.

These photos are a different way of seeing things. We get attached in the way we view the world. The world is constantly changing and we need to try and adjust. Accepting the useful logic and rejecting the unacceptable nonsense. Believing in the logic of today not stuck in obsolete old ways. Consider all the visual angles and other aspects of our life. The detrimental parts of the old myths and fairytales can then be discarded.

This is the low down on fairytailes.

This is the low down on fairytailes.

Fairy stories can be entertaining and may have some moral lessons we can use. As long as we understand what is fact and what is fiction we will not argue about irrelevant stupidity.  Magic and miracles all have an explanation if we can see through the trickery, sleight-of-hand, deceit and subterfuge. Mysteries exist that man cannot explain and a hypothesis is put forward to work by. With advancements in understanding the old ideas are replaced by feasible ones.

A fairytail or a naughty gnomes trail.

A fairytail or a naughty gnomes trail.

People are naturally reluctant to change and some people have ulterior reason to not want change. Men in high positions of power suppress the facts that would put them out of business. They suppressed truth and their followers are encouraged to continue in their ignorance. Fear and promises are used to keep their gullible supporters under their control. Greed, fear and ignorance are the three poisons our magnificent natural world is stressed by. If as individuals we do not yield to the evil of greed, bribery or fear, remaining reciprocal, unbiased and learning from all of life teachings, the world will benefit.

looking up at all the angles.

looking up at all the angles.

While greed and lies prevail and men fight over the small issues of power, the hungry starve and nature suffers under the pressures of a system based on acquisition. Fairies in our garden are for the enjoyment of children. Adults can have a laugh too and then look at all the angles without fairies, angels and divine messengers. Arguing about who created our wonderful world is destroying it. By taking only what you need appreciating and sharing natures wondrous free gifts. Our individual personal actions may make our world a better place. 

Follow The Path to contentment.

Follow The Path to contentment.

http://www.thebigview.com/buddhism/eightfoldpath.htmlto  I would recomond following this path.

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What is your problem?

1997 Korean trip.

 Korean 1st trip.

You see your world from your unique position; it is crystal clear to you. You know your version of your vision. I see my world from my point of view; it could be close to yours or totally opposite to you. It is clear to me what I see, but you cannot see it my way and I cannot see as you do. Perhaps we should change positions. You would then have a clearer view from my position and some idea of my understanding, and I would see things from your angle. We could then decide the advantage of holding a particular point of view. We would then realize we need a three hundred and sixty degree view and this is difficult for a mere mortal to do. Then who has x-ray vision? We still would not know the secrets hidden below the surface. We would remain ignorant but at least have established some understanding of another point of view.

2006 top steps

All our views lack a full understanding of what is beyond our view. On this limited view we make our hypotheses to explain the nature of the inexplicable universe and this is our view. There are many views from scientific to the super natural, some totally different to the view of another, but armed with reciprocal understanding of the other persons view, there is no need to take up weapons to defend our view. Realizing these views are only theories, to explain what we cannot see.

2004 view from steps

Look at some facts; find out how many different views there are on a subject like religion. You may be surprised every major religion, and there are many, have thousands of different branches, denominations or schools. Then there are the cults, the secret societies, the shamans, the witch-doctors and many new age groups. All sincerely believing they are right many without looking into any of the many other beliefs. They may tell you their God has spoken to them. May be God spoke to me too, but evidently I was not listening. Maybe a different God spoke to someone else. There are many Gods and all are the true God to the one that believes in him or her, or ‘it’. Yes, god could be an ‘it’, a force or something like nature with natural laws all interrelated and interdependent.

 Look out

It is easy to accept someone else’s words on faith. Words they claim were given to them from their God. There have been many prophets. The only one with any credibility in recent times would be Haile Selassie a very good man by all accounts. He was an inspiration to Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King also Malcolm X and if you are a fan of Bob Marley you will know about the Rastafarian Movement. Throughout history there have been many admirable men such as Jesus and the Buddha. It is not unusual for followers to enlarge on the good deeds of the deceased. In the case of the Buddha some people have elevated him to the status of a god. A lot of things change over 2,500 years and it takes a lot of unbiased reading to realize the truth is difficult to ascertain. Recently a man was interviewed on T.V. he was claiming to be the returned messiah I do not think anyone believed him.

Gwancheol gate

Metaphysics a philosophy concerned with knowing and being, a metaphysicist tries to explain the fundamental nature of the universe. All I can say is philosophy is a very heavy subject. Was the Buddha a metaphysicist? He taught

The Four Noble Truths. 

1. life was  dukkha, dukkha equates to the unsatisfactory nature of things.

2. The origin of dukkha.

3. the cassation of dukkha.

4. The Eight Fold Path the way to the cessation of dukkha.

Insige wall.

The first step on the path is ‘right understanding’ to realizing all things that are subject to arising are subject to cessation. Wanting these impermanent things is to invite eventual pain. If we have right understanding and practice  the other steps on The Eight Fold Path. We avoid dukkha, much of life’s suffering and will promote good in the world.

good view

We should study all the good teachings available to us and our P.C. gives us access to a vast amount of wisdom. If you are interested type into Google names and things in my post you are unfamiliar with. I do not wish to take anyone to exclusive sites I have chosen.  It is up to you to learn from the outside and growing on the inside. Not accepting anything or ruling out anything till it is tested thoroughly. Any God that objects to this is very insecure and not the true ultimate power in the universe.

Lookout

That is our problem, perhaps it is an unsolvable one. The Alcoholics Anonymous has adopted a prayer, attributed to Reinhold Niebuhr. That is appropriate to quote here, The Serenity Prayer.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. The courage to change the things I can change, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Stream and wall

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 Path to practice.

Many paths to the top of the mountain.

Many paths to the top of the mountain.

You may not believe the story of Jesus’ resurrection as described in the Bible, (Mathew 28: 1-20; Mark 16:1-20; Luke 24: 1-49; john 20: 1-21 :25,). You may have another story from a book you hold sacred. Whether you believe it true or false, does not automatically make you a nice person. You do not need to belong to any one religion or philosophical group to be a decent, honest and caring person. A person can have any religious or philosophical belief as long as they live in harmony with their fellow-man, practicing noble ethical qualities. The downside is you may not go to heaven, that is a hot subject to debate.

After the crucifixtion.

After the Crucifixion.

Observing a few basic, ethical rules and practicing them govern whether a person is a worthy person you can trust and rely on. In reality people are not, “good people”, people specially chosen. There are the uninformed or ignorant and there are people who genuinely believe they know, but may be misinformed, but still can be nice people, eager to help anyone in need. Bearing this in mind we must not be ignorant, arrogant or rude, listen with respect, balance the facts and except what is helpful and disregard what is nonsense.

The golden rule.

The golden rule.

There are basic ethical rules that do not conflict with any major religion and are incorporated in their precepts or laws. All worthy people who practice the qualities of kindness and consideration for their fellow-man are good people. To be kind you must be considerate and have respect for the feelings of others. If you are respectful you will be respected, that is the meaning of reciprocity in action. Treating others as we would like to be treated is “the golden rule.” When practicing the “golden rule,” you must remember we do not all have the same ideas, likes and dislikes. Therefore you should always consider the others preferences.

A nother choice, one of the Hindu trinity.

Another choice, one of the Hindu trinity.

The Christians follow “the Ten commandments”. Other beliefs have their guiding laws and precepts. They all agreed on the same fundamental principles, of prohibiting killing, upholding honesty, not lying or stealing, prohibiting illicit sex and violence, also not abusing drugs. All drugs are harmful; all have side effects, these effects must be considered carefully. A little may be a beneficial medicine or it could be dangerous poison. If you do not practice these laws or rules you are either ignorant or a fool. These are the principles that allow society to live in peace and harmony. The ignorant need teaching the fool is sick and needs understanding care and compassion.

Generosity without limit beer in moderation.

Generosity without limit beer in moderation.

There should be a meeting place, where we can practice the things we do agree on. Then listen to each other’s thoughts, views, ideas and beliefs without argument. controlling our thoughts and emotions is essential or what started out as a discussion could escalate into an argument that could become violent.

Religion can be an excuse to plunder.

Religion can be an excuse to plunder.

Learning to control the thoughts that are agitating our mind, like static interferes with T.V. reception, some people use meditation, some use pray and some may be gifted with a tranquil nature. Whatever religion or philosophy is chosen if it allows you to listen calmly in the midst of a debate and not get angry or resentful it is serving you well. You will become wise by listening and not allow your pride or ego to draw you into an argument. You will remain silent or respond with calm logic to the question under debate. It may be difficult to tolerate people who persist in not seeing clearly as you beleave. Consider this is good practice for awareness of your thoughts and tolerance towards others. Remember conversely the situation is also difficult for the other party.

Montage of Religions.

Montage of Religions.

We have to share this small world with many different races with their diverse customs and practices. There are many major religions each with a surprising number of different branches or denominations. This gives us a vast amount to study and consider before we decide who is right. Till we get to know people of other beliefs, read their writing and study their ideas can we know whose teachings are the supreme path to follow? Till then be tolerant and promote what we all can agree on.

Not yet tranquil.

Not yet tranquil.

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 Steps to restore the environment.

Rest is found in the greens of nature.

This post was prompted because so many people are deeply concerned about the impact our materialistic system is having on the environment and our quality of life.

Worry is futile.

Worries and fears will not help and violent action will aggravate the problem. Putting our hands together praying may still our fear but the problem will remain. Although a practical spiritual approach is needed.

Friends with Buddha.

Understanding the Taoist ideas of wu-wei, (the action of non action) and to be in balance with nature, would be of some help. The Buddha’s understanding of the nature of reality found in the Four Noble Truths and practicing the steps he prescribed in The Eight Fold Path could be the answer. If we were to follow this philosophy the problems of the modern world could be turned around. With this understanding and practice I believe there would be a vast improvement in your happiness and the world in general.

Fathers choice a Christian child.

There is no need to change your religious beliefs, understanding the Four Noble Truths and by following the Eight Fold Path would enhance your existing beliefs not change them.

Sacred places are tranqual havens.

Mother natures problem child.

The problem child does not want to go to bed, stays up late watching television. What the child watches is mostly violence or negative nonsense interrupted by the advertising of useless extravagant things we cannot afford. The violence instills fear because of fear the child is driven to school. Two cars are then needed in the family. Father has no time to wait for busses to get to work. Busses are so infrequent, no-one uses them except old people and they get a concession on their fare, no wonder public transport is failing to give good service. The children need to be taken to sport, and other activities by car, they cannot ride their bikes because the roads are crowded with dangerous drivers, hurrying to keep up with the modern pace of the human race.

A nice toy for the boy.

The cost of all the labour-saving devices, we are enticed to buy by the advertising industry has made it necessary to go to a gym to exercise. We could get our exercise in many other ways but there is not time for messing around at the beach surfing or wandering in the mountains. We have to keep earning those dollars to pay for all our time-saving and fashionable, ego building, items advertising lured us into buying.

Natural and free is the way to be.

The garden is paved there is no time to play in a garden. A chlorinated swimming pool replaces the lawn, with a few sculptured garden gnomes and sometimes a concrete Buddha meditating. The birds, bees and interesting creatures have no reason to visit, this sterile unnatural place. Mother Nature’s delinquent children have no time to enjoy her free gifts. They are too busy greedily acquiring more things to hoard and clutter up their life.

Economical and practical.

This is not my problem I am not wasting my time worrying about the environment. Nature is infinite it cannot be destroyed; man will ultimately destroy himself with his ignorance. In nature nothing is lost it only changes, as matter in a compost heap breaks down to become nutrients for new life.

We need to take care, of natures beauty.

A truce is needed in all mans wars and a united effort is needed to restore our alliance with nature.

Altogether beautiful.

I am only concerned in fixing my own faults and how much I am abusing nature’s free gifts. I have little influence on the world; I only have influence on myself. Advertising is selling it but I am resisting the temptation to buy and throw out something just because it is faded or out of fashion. Do not buy unless you have a genuine need. Nature is a lasting free gift, other costly things are impermanent and time is an irreplaceable resource, once spent it can never be regained, you cannot relive yesterday. Our life is made of un-renewable time.

beautifying the world.

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Montage of Religions.

The montage of religions.

Although all these religions have good aspects, they all have doubters and disputes, within their faith and with other religions. All have good intentions and can help in living an ethical life.  But in my opinion none are the ultimate answer. I could be wrong, I am still learning, no doubt I am ignorant of some of the details. We often look outside and criticize others, when the fault lies within our self.  I will follow what I believe and not be dogmatic about other dogmas and beliefs. With an open questioning attitude I hope to gain some understanding, of what is possibly an unanswerable question.

A piece of heaven.

I learned some interesting things, while gathering pictures for the montage.

thanks to.

Peace in heaven.

Thanks to Google and all the people whose pictures I used in the montage. All the other pictures I used are my own photos and drawings. That works out reasonably well, thanks to the Photoshop program. For the montage I decided to explore another way of getting pictures and I learned a lot more than I had expected   Thanks to the web site, Islamic Academy, I read the article for non Muslims, well worth reading, especially for people who consider Muslims a threat. That was where I got the beautiful art representation of Allah I liked others but chose the one with the flowers as they are more in keeping with purity and seemed more as a gift from the above. Thanks for the picture I used in the montage from other sites. They all gave me a bit more interesting knowledge about the beliefs they represented. I give thanks to them for this knowledge that contributes to my understanding and enlightenment.

Many rivers flow to one ocean.

Knowledge and understanding are the antidote to fear and hatred. It is said, “Things are neither good nor bad, things are just as they are.” to the wise. We can get too emotionally involved, too judgmental. Some times we think something is wonderful when we learn the price; decide it expensive, not worth the time and effort and often an adversity is a blessing in disguises.

The ocean is vast.

If we look for the good we will find it, if we look for faults we will find them. It could be what we see is only a reflection of what we are looking for. So let us start to look for the good in our fellow man, he is a reflection of you. Smile at the people you meet, they will usually return your smile, do not get upset if they do not, they may have problems and need kindness, not more troubles. Do not be too quick to judge that untidy, mean-looking person, in reality he may have dreadful problems plaguing him. See him under favorable circumstances and he could appear much more appealing.

The ocean is deep.

To judge a belief as a myth and nonsense, before studying it with an open mind is biased, prejudice. A mind interested in the underlying reasoning is more rewarding. Things I once thought had no useful purpose or were unintelligible nonsense, after further investigation I saw the reasoning behind them. Some I then judged as helpful to my spiritual advancement others I decided were not helpful to me. I always benefited in that I gained understanding of the people that lived by those beliefs.

The ocean is beautiful.

Reciprocity, understanding and respect are things that could save a lot of turmoil in our world. To live with trust in our neighbor, knowing he has the same needs as us and if not deprived of his fair share of these basic needs, like us he would rather live in peace than risk his life in war and the destruction. War does more damage to our environment than all the peaceful activity. Nature is infinite and will not be destroyed, man is mortal he will be destroyed, if he refuses to learn.

Natures beautiful gifts we should appreciate in your own way.

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