Remembering War, Working For Peace

A Field Of PoppiesThe two minute silence, in remembrance of those who gave their lives in the service of our country, seemed particularly poignant yesterday.

Being the 100th anniversary of the start of WWI has led to greater emphasis on the event.

But we should not forget the true meaning of the silence and why the sanctity of life is so important.

The sanctity of life is known to everyone. At the same time, there is universal confusion about the essential meaning of life’s sanctity. If the sanctity of life can become a solid touchstone of wisdom for all people, then humankind’s destiny to experience war and misery repeatedly can be transformed.

As Sensei explains it: “Kosen means ‘to widely declare.’ Widely implies speaking out to the world, to an ever-greater number and ever-broader spectrum of people. Declare means ‘to proclaim one’s ideals, principles and philosophy.’ The ru of rufu means ‘a current like that of a great river.’ And fu means ‘to spread out like a roll of cloth.’

“The teaching of the Mystic Law has nothing to do with appearance, form or pride. It flows out freely to all humanity the world over. Like a cloth unfolding, it spreads out and covers all. So rufu means ‘to flow freely, to reach all.’

“Just like a cloth, kosen-rufu is woven from vertical and horizontal threads. The vertical threads represent the passing of Nichiren Daishonin’s teaching from mentor to disciple, parent to child, senior to junior. The horizontal threads represent the impartial spread of this teaching, transcending national borders, social classes and all other distinctions. Simply put, kosen-rufu is the movement to communicate the ultimate way to happiness—to communicate the highest principle of peace to people of all classes and nations through the correct philosophy and teaching of Nichiren”It is toward this end, towards Kosen-Rufu, that we Nichiren Buddhists are struggling.

It is toward this end, towards Kosen-Rufu, that we Nichiren Buddhists are struggling.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

The Goal – World Peace

Dove Of PeaceThe world’s population is around seven and a quarter billion, and our small planet is obviously not getting any bigger.

To support all these hungry mouths we have to collaborate more closely than ever, to stop fighting and start farming in sustainable ways.

All those hundreds of years ago, Nichiren was utterly convinced we could change even the most dire and painful reality, including the danger of war, and indeed that it was imperative that we do so.

This conviction underlies his unwavering determination to create a peaceful society by disseminating the teachings of Buddhism. This is why we are working with endless determination, to achieve Kosen Rufu, World Peace.

One Hundred Years On … WWIII?

Kepp Calm and Support UkraineWith the media alive with recollections of the onset of The Great War in 1914, it is ironic that one hundred years later, Russia has taken control of The Crimea, and Western leaders are warning of dire consequences, should they fail to heed calls to withdraw.

Although reports of the military action are reporting that the local people welcome the move, and that no shots have yet been fired, it would appear, from outside Ukraine at least, that Russia is invading a sovereign country.

With the possibility of dire consequences, if Russian and the West resort to military conflict instead of political dialogue, one can only hope for calm heads in both camps to prevail. William Hague has already called the situation ‘Europe’s biggest crisis of the century‘.

With northern Ukraine seeking to form closer ties to the European Union whilst the southern Crimea region remains firmly allied to it’s former Soviet overlord, there would appear to be a strong possibility of civil war, should a political solution not be found.

A military conflict cannot be the way forward for either parties. But as Putin flexes his muscles, and takes control of the area surrounding their Black Sea bases, it is left up to the G7 leaders and President Obama to show wisdom and rational thinking in the weeks ahead.

Give Peace A Chance

Global PeaceWith Russian troops being put on high alert in Ukraine, as a result of the recent political unrest, it is clear that the goal of world peace, Kosen-Rufu, still requires much effort if it is ever to come to fruition.

The sanctity of life is known to everyone. At the same time, there is universal confusion about the essential meaning of life’s sanctity.

If the sanctity of life can become a solid touchstone of wisdom for all people, then humankind’s destiny to experience war and misery repeatedly can be transformed.

As Sensei explains it: “Kosen means ‘to widely declare.’ Widely implies speaking out to the world, to an ever-greater number and ever-broader spectrum of people. Declare means ‘to proclaim one’s ideals, principles and philosophy.’ The ru of rufu means ‘a current like that of a great river.’ And fu means ‘to spread out like a roll of cloth.’

“The teaching of the Mystic Law has nothing to do with appearance, form or pride. It flows out freely to all humanity the world over. Like a cloth unfolding, it spreads out and covers all. So rufu means ‘to flow freely, to reach all.’

“Just like a cloth, kosen-rufu is woven from vertical and horizontal threads. The vertical threads represent the passing of Nichiren Daishonin’s teaching from mentor to disciple, parent to child, senior to junior. The horizontal threads represent the impartial spread of this teaching, transcending national borders, social classes and all other distinctions. Simply put, kosen-rufu is the movement to communicate the ultimate way to happiness—to communicate the highest principle of peace to people of all classes and nations through the correct philosophy and teaching of Nichiren”It is toward this end, towards Kosen-Rufu, that we Nichiren Buddhists are struggling.

It is toward this end, towards Kosen-Rufu, that we Nichiren Buddhists are struggling.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Kosen Rufu – World Peace

The Palos Verdes Blue - Rare And FragileWhat is peace? The definition in the Merriam-Webster online dictionary says this:

1 : a state of tranquillity or quiet: as

a : freedom from civil disturbance
b : a state of security or order within a community provided for by law or custom <a breach of the peace>


2 :
freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions

3 : harmony in personal relations

4

a : a state or period of mutual concord between governments
b : a pact or agreement to end hostilities between those who have been at war or in a state of enmity

5

—used interjectionally to ask for silence or calm or as a greeting or farewell

at peace

: in a state of concord or tranquillity

So we can see that the word itself has many meanings, but in the context of this post, we will be talking about the fourth of those meanings, peace between governments or people of differing political or religious beliefs.

The seemingly never ending situation between the Israeli Jews and the Palestinian Arabs would appear to be a perfect example of how the parties on the two sides of an argument hold such deep seated principles, that neither will concede any ground to the other. The resulting stalemate has been the cause of hundreds of deaths, yet still the conflict remains. A typical no-win, blame-each-other, under-no-circumstances-show-any-weakness type of stand-off, with the ordinary man and women in the street bearing the brunt.

Peace, it would appear from historical evidence, is not a natural state of affairs. The predominant trait of humans would seem to be to want more and more, be that power, money, land or generally any commodity you care to mention. Far from the quest for peace, governments and nations, tribes and religions, have been locked in an eternal quest to become the dominant entity since time began. That process goes on and on, and shows no sign of abating even in the modern age.

We comically call ourselves civilised people, and I suppose in the very broad sense of the word we are. But to my mind, civilised people work together to create a situation of mutual respect and harmony in which all, not just those at the top, can prosper. I don’t see a great deal of that anywhere around here. The Have’s have it all and the Have-Not’s have not a hope in hell of breaking the mould.

With all the tensions created between these Have’s and Have-Not’s, be they economic, power, religious or political, the balance between the protagonists is destroyed. Where there is imbalance there is stress, where there is stress there is a destructive force that will continue to exist until either the balance is restored or one of the sides is destroyed.

Peace, by which I mean a lasting mutual agreement, can only be achieved and maintained by seeking out this balance. Whilst there are any aggrieved feelings by either party, the peace is in jeopardy, although it may be that it can be maintained temporarily by one side or the other accepting the imbalance. The situation will not last however, the destructive forces will always come to the fore eventually.

The primary goal of Nichiren Buddhists, Kosen-Rufu, or World Peace will only come about when the process of Human Revolution is complete. This involves the entire population of the planet learning the ways of happiness and hence finding a universal peace. As SGI president Daisaku Ikeda put it …

“Just like a cloth, kosen-rufu is woven from vertical and horizontal threads. The vertical threads represent the passing of Nichiren Daishonin’s teaching from mentor to disciple, parent to child, senior to junior. The horizontal threads represent the impartial spread of this teaching, transcending national borders, social classes and all other distinctions. Simply put, kosen-rufu is the movement to communicate the ultimate way to happiness—to communicate the highest principle of peace to people of all classes and nations through the correct philosophy and teaching of Nichiren”

If did seem for a while in 2011, that there was as seed change happening, starting with the Arab Spring. it really did feel as though the marvellous quote from Daisaku Ikeda,

“A great resolution in just a single individual will help achieve a change in the destiny of an entire society and further, will cause a change in the destiny of humankind.”

was actually about to come to fruition. But the forces of evil, otherwise known as the greedy bastards who govern most countries, were not going to let their power slip so easily.

Every day we hear about further atrocities and conflicts. The on-going conflict in Egypt brings scenes of death and violence onto our TV screens every evening of late.

Not wishing in any way to end this post on a down-beat note, but it is clear that Peace is a very fragile and elusive thing. Like the Palos Verdes Blue it is very rarely seen, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist, or that, given the right environment, it won’t flourish and cease to be so rare.

Let us have faith in Kosen-Rufu, or whatever you wish to call it, remove this underlying current of greed and violence and make the world a happy and peaceful place for once.

Namaste ~ Anupadin

The Goal Of Kosen-Rufu

Global PeaceWith talks on-going between the US and China over the continued sabre rattling of North Korea, it is clear that the goal of world peace, Kosen-Rufu, still requires much effort if it is ever to come to fruition.

The sanctity of life is known to everyone. At the same time, there is universal confusion about the essential meaning of life’s sanctity.

If the sanctity of life can become a solid touchstone of wisdom for all people, then humankind’s destiny to experience war and misery repeatedly can be transformed.

As Sensei explains it: “Kosen means ‘to widely declare.’ Widely implies speaking out to the world, to an ever-greater number and ever-broader spectrum of people. Declare means ‘to proclaim one’s ideals, principles and philosophy.’ The ru of rufu means ‘a current like that of a great river.’ And fu means ‘to spread out like a roll of cloth.’

“The teaching of the Mystic Law has nothing to do with appearance, form or pride. It flows out freely to all humanity the world over. Like a cloth unfolding, it spreads out and covers all. So rufu means ‘to flow freely, to reach all.’

“Just like a cloth, kosen-rufu is woven from vertical and horizontal threads. The vertical threads represent the passing of Nichiren Daishonin’s teaching from mentor to disciple, parent to child, senior to junior. The horizontal threads represent the impartial spread of this teaching, transcending national borders, social classes and all other distinctions. Simply put, kosen-rufu is the movement to communicate the ultimate way to happiness—to communicate the highest principle of peace to people of all classes and nations through the correct philosophy and teaching of Nichiren”It is toward this end, towards Kosen-Rufu, that we Nichiren Buddhists are struggling.

It is toward this end, towards Kosen-Rufu, that we Nichiren Buddhists are struggling.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Greater Sexual Equality – Sadly?

Afghan PolicewomanI was dismayed to hear the news this morning, that an Afghan policewoman killed a US NATO advisor in Kabul. It is believed to be the first ‘insider’, or Green on Blue attack to be carried out by a woman.

As with all crimes of violence, there seems to be, for me at least, and additional shock factor when the perpetrator is female. I am unsure quite why that should be, maybe it’s because I am old fashioned and still consider them the to be fairer sex.

Whatever the reason, it is very sad to hear about the incident in Kabul. One can only hope that it will prove to be an isolated incident and that it is an indication that the Taliban are finding it more difficult to carry out such attacks using men.

Following on from the news that The British troops stationed out in Afghanistan are to be withdrawn sooner than scheduled, due to the reported increased progress being made in the training of the Afghan troops and police forces, it makes one question, once again, what kind of mess we will be leaving behind.

A Little Common Sense

The Patchwork Quilt Of PeaceI’m sure you will be as relieved as I to hear about the cease-fire that has been announced this evening between Israel and Hamas in Egypt. The Gaza situation has been a long and festering sore in the complicated puzzle that is the Middle East, so any glimmer of hope that a long term solution might be found should be welcomed.

It is sad to realise that over one hundred and fifty people have lost their lives in the recent escalation along the Israeli border. There cannot really be any excuse, on either side, for the almost total lack of dialogue over the past months and years. It almost appears that the current arrangement suits the aggressive nature of both sides.

Despite that, we should all applaud the efforts of Egypt, to bring the protagonists together in an attempt to secure this successful outcome. Working towards World Peace, or Kosen-Rufu as we call in in Nichiren Buddhism, is like making, and mending, a patchwork quilt. But like a quilt, the result can be so much greater that the sum of the parts, and is a beautiful thing to behold.

Let us chant and pray that both sides are prepared to honour their side of the agreement and that the patchwork quilt holds strong while growing ever larger and more amazing.

Don’t Tar Us All With The Same Brush

His Holiness, The Dalai LamaI was dismayed, earlier today, when I stumbled across the I Hate Buddhism page on Facebook. The page is a reaction to the violence against Muslims in Burma, with which I wholeheartedly disagree, but it paints a very bleak picture for any hope of peace.

What is really disturbing, is that, as a Buddhist myself, presumably I am also the subject of this torrent of hate. The Dalai Lama, surely one of the most revered and peace loving people on the planet, is also attacked and described as a devil.

Whilst I fully sympathise with the plight of the Muslims in Burma, I cannot, for the life of me, find any positive aspects of this or other similar sites on Facebook. I urge all people who are working so hard for world peace to report this page for inciting hatred, surely against the Facebook code of conduct.

The authors of the page have very valid grievances and deserve our prayers and help, but going about things this way cannot help their cause. Surely a more logical route to resolving the problem would be to call on the worldwide Buddhist community to put pressure on the Burmese to stop the atrocities.

P.S. Many thanks to Facebook for removing the page so promptly and also to all of you who reported the page.

Determination To Succeed

Determined To SucceedThe world’s population has just passed seven billion, and our small planet is obviously not getting any bigger. To support all these hungry mouths we have to collaborate more closely than ever, to stop fighting and start farming.

All those hundreds of years ago, Nichiren was utterly convinced we could change even the most dire and painful reality, including the danger of war, and indeed that it was imperative that we do so.

This conviction underlies his unwavering determination to create a peaceful society by disseminating the teachings of Buddhism. This is why we are working with endless determination today, to achieve Kosen Rufu, World Peace.

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