Ties into this whole Buddhist notion that “there’s only one of us here”. There’s only God knowing thyself through “us” via consciousness – from a human perspective – “mind games”. LOL. That’s why the universe is also referred to as the great cosmic joke. Lila certainly is DIVINE. 😀
[An old favorite, written by James Kauffman, Ed.D., Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education at the University of Virginia. This was originally addressed to conservative radio talk host Dr. Laura Schlesinger, who said that, as an observant Orthodox Jew, she found that, according to Leviticus 18:22, homosexuality is an abomination and cannot be condoned under any circumstance. This piece more recently went around the Internet, re-addressed to President George W. Bush. We use this latter version, with one addition from myself (#10).]
Dear President Bush,
Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s Law. I have learned a great deal from you and understand why you would propose and support a constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage. As you said: “in the eyes of God marriage is based between a man and a woman.” I try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate.
I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other elements of God’s Laws and how to follow them.
1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can’t I own Canadians?
2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?
3. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanness–Lev.15: 19-24. The problem is how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women for some reason take offense at this.
4. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord–Lev.1:9. The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?
5. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself, or should I ask the police to do it?
6. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination (Lev. 11:10), it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don’t agree. Can you settle this? Are there “degrees” of abomination?
7. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev.19:27. How should they die?
8. I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?
9. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev.19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton-polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? (Lev.24:10-16) Couldn’t we just burn them to death at a private family affair, like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)
[And one more, newly submitted:] 10. Very shortly after my recent marriage, I learned from Deuteronomy 22:13-21 that “a marriage shall be considered valid only if the wife is a virgin. If the wife is not a virgin, she shall be executed.” Now, as a recent widower, my question is… do I get to keep her dowry and the wedding presents?
I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy considerable expertise in such matters, so I am confident you can help.Thank you again for reminding us that God’s word is eternal and unchanging.
The illustrious reviver of Korean Son (Zen) for the modern era, master Kyongho Song-u (1846-1912), had many great dharma-successors. The most formidable was Mangong Wolmyon (1871-1946). Once, Mangong and Suwol (1855-1928), an older dharma successor of Kyongho, were sitting together in conversation. Suwol picked up a bowl of browned rice, a favorite Korean snack, and spoke in the paradoxical language typical of Son/Zen: “Don’t say this is a bowl of browned rice. Don’t say this is not a bowl of browned rice. Just give me one word.” Mangong reached over, took the bowl from Suwol and threw it out of the window. Suwol was very pleased, “Very good. That’s wonderful!”
The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said,
‘There is no better companion
on this way than what you do. Your actions will be
your best friend, or if you’re cruel and selfish,
your actions will be a poisonous snake
that lives in your grave.’
But tell me,
Can you do the good work without a teacher?
Can you even know what it is without the presence
of a Master? Notice how the lowest livelihood
requires some instruction.
First comes knowledge,
Then the doing of the job, And much later,
perhaps after you’re dead, something grows
from what you’ve done.
Look for help and guidance
in whatever craft you’re learning. Look for a generous
teacher, one who has absorbed the tradition he’s in.
Look for pearls in oyster shells.
Learn technical skill from a craftsman. Continue reading
A certain man had a jealous wife
and a very, very appealing maidservant. Continue reading
Some time ago there was a man named Nasuh
He made his living shampooing women in a bathhouse
He had a face like a woman, but he was not effeminate,
though he disguised his virility, so as to keep his job,
He loved touching the women as he washed their hair
He stayed sexually alert at full strength,
all the time, massaging the beautiful women,
especially the Princess and her ladies-in-waiting.
Sometimes he thought of changing jobs,
of doing something
where he couldn’t be so constantly lustful,
but he couldn’t quit.
He went to a mystic saint and said,
“Please remember me in a prayer.”
That holy man was spiritually free,
and totally opened to God. He knew Nasuh’s secret,
but with God’s gentleness he didn’t speak of it. Continue reading
A woman once asked Zen Master Seung Sahn, “Do you believe in God?”
She became perplexed. “You are a Buddhist monk, and a Zen master, at that. How can you possibly believe in God?”
“I can believe my hands. I believe in my eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind. Why not believe in God? If you believe in your true self completely, then you can believe that the sky is blue, the tree is green, the dog is barking ‘Woof! Woof!’ It’s very simple, yah?”
The woman was silent for a moment.
Zen Master Seung Sahn continued, “Buddhism teaches, ‘One by one, each thing is complete.’ That means that your mind is complete. How is your mind complete? (Hits the floor with his Zen stick.) Just this point. Did you hear that? (Hits the floor.) That point is already complete. If you’re thinking, it’s not complete. But in this moment (hits the floor), just hear that sound. At that moment, this sound and you (hits the floor) already become one, which means you and the universe already become one. This means there’s no subject, no object; no inside, no outside. Inside and outside already become one. The name for that is absolute, or truth.
“So if you keep this mind (hits the floor), your mind is already complete. The sun, the moon, the stars, and everything are already complete. Your sound and my sound are the same. This sound (hits the floor) is your substance: this sound’s substance and your substance already become one; my substance and this sound’s substance already become one. It’s the same substance as the sun, the moon, and the stars—any substance is the same substance. So Buddhism teaches, ‘Each thing has it. It and dust interpenetrate.’ This means that sound’s substance, and name and form, already become one. Let us consider ice, water, and steam. The names and forms are different, but fundamentally it is all still H2O. Water is H2O. Ice is H2O. Steam is also H2O. Name and form are different, and constantly change according to conditions, but the substance is the same.”
“But this seems so difficult, and not related at all to the question of God,” the woman said.
“Put it all down, OK? If you’re thinking, this seems very difficult. If you’re not thinking, it’s no problem. If you’re thinking, you make ‘I’,’my,’ and ‘me.’ Descartes said, ‘I think, therefore I am.’ Thinking makes I; thinking makes everything. But if you are not thinking, then what? When you are thinking, you make this whole universe, you make everything. And then ‘I’ and ‘God’ and ‘Buddha’ and everything are separate. But if you keep this point (hits the floor)—this moment—then you and God are never separate. It’s very easy, yah?”
Additional metaphor: “cover the world with leather…”