How to Fight Terrorists: The Beheading Issue
- How to Fight Terrorists: The Beheading Issue
Q: I wonder what would the Buddha say to terrorists? What would he say to them so that they will stop doing all these things?
A: I wonder too. Anyway, here is what Thich Nhat Hanh said back right after 9/11, when all this madness kind of "began" from: "How to Fight Terrorists" : http://www.beliefnet.com/frameset.asp?pageLoc=/story/91/story_9164_1.html&boardID=27495 An excerpt:
"We must learn to speak out so that the voice of the Buddha can be heard in this dangerous and pivotal moment of history. Those of us who have the light should display the light and offer it so that the world will not sink into total darkness. Everyone has the seed of awakening and insight within his or her heart. Let us help each other touch these seeds in ourselves so that everyone could have the courage to speak out. We must ensure that the way we live our daily lives (with or without mindful consumption, with or without discrimination, with or without participating in injustice ...) does not create more terrorism in the world. We need a collective awakening to stop this course of self-destruction."
Q: Sometimes it seems that nothing will stop terrorists. They are really making the world a depressing place to live in. How can they think of themselves as the heroes upholding righteousness in the name of religion? Really blinded by hatred... What kind of person can actually cut off the head of another living being?
A: There is hope for the "worst" of us. We all have Buddha-nature, even if shrouded by much delusion.
The Buddha said everyone can become Buddhas - if only they realise their mistakes and work hard
for the better. About cutting off the head of another living being, well, so many animals' heads are cut off and their bodies chopped up for human consumption everyday. What I'm saying is not that cutting off heads is acceptable - but that maybe humans should look closer to see the common atrocious violence they are directly or indirectly linked with, before looking too far.
We are linked with more terrorism than we think. It might be interesting to note that Buddhism teaches that war is often caused by mass-violence to animals who die in mass-slaughter, who generate collective hatred in future lives as humans - that is one powerful basis to encourage vegetarianism (See www.kmspks.org/articles/vege.htm) All beings have equal rights - Iraqis, Americans, Koreans, terrorists, animals... :-] I think we should generate compassion for all involved and reduce the violence we are linked to - to promote world peace - what else can we do? -shian | pic:nbcsandiego.com