Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Monk Named Intellect

I'm reviewing and re-listening to all the logic classes in ACI, The Art of Reason. On class one and review of the two reasons to study logic. Of course, the first is to see emptiness. But the second is to be a holder of the dharma. But there's also a negative reason: to stop me from judging others.

In the sutra they recount the story of a Monk named Intellect who started up a monastery keeping Vinaya vows when he was visited by a Monk named Pure Life. Pure Life and his followers began staying with Intellect. Townsfolk asked for teaching and Pure Life began going into town. He was asked more and more and started spending time away from the monastery. Intellect started judging and critiquing Pure Life. He thought something devious was going on when Pure Life went into town. He made a rule that no one could go into town any more who lived in the monastery. Pure Life followed the rule for a while but the towns people begged and pleaded. Out of compassion Pure Life left the monastery and started teaching again.

Pure Life passed on and was a fully-enlightened Buddha. When Intellect passed on he wen to hell for billions of years. He was tortured unbearably and he judged and tried to hurt the spreading of the teachings.

The punch line to this tale is that Lord Buddha said 'he knows this story because he was the monk named Intellect who went to hell."

I think about the anger toward Lebron James and his ESPN special "The Decision." I remember that the special raised millions of dollars for the Boys and Girls Club and I'm reminding of not judging what I see.

In a larger way, I think about all my petty grievances and judgments against people for their attitudes and behavior. I have no idea what's going on. Maybe that person who appears to be annoying, selfish and rude is raising millions of dollars for Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Maybe the Republicans shrieks and even the Tea Parties stances are doing something that is very beneficial for Obama in the long run, and for the nation...somehow.

I'm acting in direct ways, more and more each day. But I'm trying to reserve judgment about who each person is and what they're really thinking.

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