Sunday, September 15, 2019

Buddhism offers compassion as cure for rigid ideologues  

Mar 25. 2019
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Re: “Farang still using Tibet as a pawn to undermine China”, Have Your Say, yesterday.

“Tibet has never been a real country” writes Prasan Stianrapapongs, in another letter which exemplifies the errors in heart and mind resulting from the Chinese regime’s relentless coercion and social engineering of its citizens. 

Of course Tibet has been a “real country”, with a well-defined border, a unique religion, culture, language, customs, heritage, race and ethnicity. Only the kind of brainwashed mind and propagandised heart that is the norm in China is capable of championing such blind and heartless nationalism. 

But the fundamental error created in China is the worship of scientific materialism above all else. Western civilisation, as exemplified in the US, the UK, in Scandinavia and parts of the EU, has created the greatest economic prosperity the world has ever seen without destroying fundamental human freedoms. Those freedoms are well expressed in the first amendment of the US constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

China has ruthlessly suppressed these same rights by force and often by the wholesale murder of its citizens.

Przemo Kranz cites the Kent State Massacre as an example of the US government murdering its own citizens (“Western governments massacre their own citizens too”, yesterday). Yes, four were killed, but it is widely and deeply regretted in US history, and the use of “massacre” to describe it underscores the depth of this regret. Contrast the number four with the 100 million slaughtered by the Communist Chinese government in its merciless, cold-blooded pursuit of authoritarian materialism, and the errors of heart and mind become clear.

Khun Prasan asks, “why don’t they [Westerners] study and practise Tibetan snail-creep thinking and see if this leads them to enlightenment?” Actually the number of Buddhists in the West is in the millions and many of these are Vajrayana Buddhists, who I am sure would readily forgive the errors in heart and mind Khun Prasan suffers, (if he would give them the opportunity).

Incidentally our China apologists might explain why China is the only country which labels Nobel Prize winner the Dalai Lama a terrorist and claims Masood Azhar is a spiritual leader?

Michael Setter

Chon Buri

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