Wednesday, December 28th, 2011
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Buddha characterized those who dwell in the past, which cannot be changed, as stuck, and said that those who dream of an imagined future equally waste the present moment, the here and now that provide an opportunity for one to influence the future.
Buddha did not tell us not to learn from the past. He taught us to learn from it, but not to live in it, which boxes us in, making us unable to move forward to the future, which will be created based on the actions we take in the present day. “I never see what has been done; I only see what remains to be done,” said Buddha.
PACIFIC DAILY NEWS
Dec. 28, 2011
Revolutionists follow Buddha’s teachings
A. Gaffar Peang-Meth
In three days, the New Year 2012 will be upon us. The next 366 days await. What we do or do not do will influence our future. As usual in the holiday season, we reflect on what we have or have not done as we contemplate our new year resolutions.
As I wish all readers, Christians and non-Christians, a merry Christmas and a happy New Year, I find in this occasion a good opportunity to write on Lord Gautama Buddha’s teachings from 2,500 years ago, which continue to provide good lessons for mankind today.
Past, present, future
The past is a lesson for the present. The present is a guide for the future. Spanish philosopher George Santayana said, “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Earlier, German revolutionary socialist Karl Marx asserted, “History does nothing; it does not possess immense riches, it does not fight battles. It is men, real, living, who do all this.”
Dhamma, in its other meaning, means nature. Nibbana or Enlightenment means practitioners are able to adapt, to adjust, to realize, and to apprehend closely to the nature. Sometime, the effort of overcoming the nature, is just a camouflage of self-destruction. Modern technology might not be able to protect the future decline of human beings by its modern technology. Academia called it cycle of repercussions. With this basic understanding, women can be equally recognized by their effort and mentality, but not by natural dependency and physically built-up. It is not only between women and men, all beings are diverse and different.
Dear Lok Krou Sotheara et al;
Of course, I do agree that a Khmer saying of satrey cannot move around the stove is not a politically correct one. We should change it to “satrey is the mother of the stove”.
It is murky for Khmer study in glancing at the gender issue: male and female is equal, not equal, neutral; which come first? Once I believe in the past, Khmer female is the leader and the founder of this nation, and many words used in Khmer words start with female first such as me-srok, me-taep, me-kum etc. However, later on I learn from some of our scholar that these words doesn’t reflect to female at all, so!!
Khmer civilization stemmed from both Hinduism and Buddhism. For Hinduism, like we all know, caste system is strongly practiced and gender equality is not promoted. For Lord Buddha, who is said a reformer of Hinduism, caste system has been altered, female status has been raised, superstitious belief has been clearly expounded…etc
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