No, I think it's more like disbelief that some Buddhists seem to be actively discouraging other Buddhists who want to do what they can to help relieve the suffering of others and make the world they live in a better place. In essence, I'm not quite sure how doing what's being suggested (if I understand it right) would be in the best interest of Tony or society in general.cooran wrote:Hello Jason,
Heh, I'll tell that to homeless Tony the next time I see him. "You're not really suffering, Tony, it's just a fabrication."
So... what? We should just do nothing until (1) we become a Buddha and (2) have a brahma deity convince us to act?
A little Atimāna rising in you over this?
The way I see it, waiting until we're all 'enlightened' before we try to help each other, or before engaging in the worldly responsibilities we have as lay-followers (e.g., civic duties), means almost nothing would get done in the present. Moreover, waiting until then to act would effectively take a large block of potential activists, voters, volunteers, etc. who are actually trying to cultivate things like compassion and wisdom out of the system, leaving people with less skillful motivations to have more of a hand in shaping the world we all live in.
Sure, we should work on ourselves as much as we can (the wiser we are, the wiser our choices will probably be); but we also shouldn't just ignore the rest of the world while doing so, in my opinion. Just because I'm not an arahant doesn't mean I can't (and shouldn't try to) make positive changes in the world that'll help to make it a better place, even if only temporarily.
To some, the 'the misery of others' may just be a 'fabrication'; but to Tony, who's homeless, cold, hungry and is more used to people treating him like a nuisance and a pest than a human being, it's very, very real. And since discovering Buddhism and developing the path to the best of my ability, I can't ignore him and his suffering like the majority of the people in his world are currently doing.
And just for reference, I don't find the insinuation that I have a superiority complex simply because I care about the people around me amusing. I don't mean to be a stick in the mud, but it's actually a little bit insulting, even with the laughing smiley next to it. (It doesn't help that I'm kind of having a pretty stressful day, either.)