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114Murder By Numbers (A Movie Dharma Review)

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  • NamoAmituofo
    Jun 12 11:59 PM
      Murder By Numbers (A Movie Dharma Review)

      Murder By Numbers
      (A Movie Dharma Review)


      This movie is about 2 well-to-do boys, Justin and Richard, who faced the age old existential problem of boredom, having got most of what they wanted already at a young age. Believing that the only way to exercise freedom was to rebel against the norm, to do what the masses do not, they devised a near perfect crime. However, the long arm of the law and the long arm of the law of karma catches up with them as their crime was exposed by a detective played by Sandra Bullock.

      As one watches the movie and ponders on Justin's philosophy as he sprouts it, one unwittingly gets disturbed- because scary as it is, it does seem to make some sense. Something to the effect was uttered- "To fully live life, one must embrace crime and suicide." To them, both crime and suicide are extreme exercises of freedom- wherein one might destroy another's life by committing murder or destroy one's own by committing suicide.

      But as Buddhists, as we ponder on, we will realise the flaws in Justin's philosophy. If all sentient beings are to acknowledge crime to be true freedom, there would only be chaos and immorality. True freedom should be an absolute quality- not relative. Not following the crowd is a relative action, not absolute. In a chaotic murderous society for example, where everyone assumes freedom to be committing perfect murders, freedom defined in Justin's sense would break down to become its opposite- saving lives instead of destroying life- since freedom is to not do what the crowd does. Freedom then becomes vague and meaningless, shape-shifting and impossible to attain permanently.

      True freedom according to Buddhism, is freedom from the 3 Poisons of Craving, Aversion and Delusion. Freedom is Justin's sense only traps one perpetually in the vicious cycles of bad karma! In Enlightenment, one is freed from the causes of all suffering and ceases to cause suffering to any other being- this is true freedom! With the attainment of true freedom, True Happiness is achieved. If freedom is any otherwise, it would not be precious or worth striving for at all!

      - movieguy@...