October 12, 2010

The poisoned arrow

Sometimes people, including myself, get hung up on speculative questions that don't really help much in the here and now. This reminds me of one of the Buddha's parables. According to the story (full text here), the Buddha is approached by someone interested in abstract questions about the cosmos, life after death and everything.

The Buddha responded that such questions aren't really much help in the goal of liberation from suffering. To paraphrase, he said it was as if someone who was shot with a poisoned arrow refused all medical treatment until he found out who shot the arrow, what they looked like, what his day job was, what kind of wood the arrow was made of, what kinds of feathers it had, and what the bow looked like. If that were to happen, "The man would die and those things would still remain unknown to him."

IS THAT ALL? The Economic Policy Institute calculates that the US economy is short 11.5 million jobs.

SOMETHING ELSE TO DENY ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE: major parts of the world are drying up.


MEAN GIRL BLUES. Here's an interesting article on girl bullying.



hollowdweller said...

Buddah had a good point.

A friend of mine used to call that "J*cking off in the mind".

In other words hung up on knowing emphemera or trivia but unable to engage in productive activity.

Or as the old gospel song went "too heavenly minded to be any earthly good"

Wasn't it Guirdijeff who said that sort of a litmus test for how well a person was on the path was that they should be able to support 4 other people by their labor?

Ex Pluribus Unum said...

Would love to see you read and comment on some of the works of James Carse, now a retired professor from BYU. I was made aware of him by encountering a remainder of his at Daedalus Books and Music called "Breakfast at the Victory", which is one of the tastiest gems I've read in a while. Goggle him and you also get his web site, references to other books (note "Finite and Infinite Games", especially), a video and more.