After my recent post- "Ancient/Mystical NippleEnticer," the lovely Nellie Vaughn expressed an interest in the promised follow up. This was the first time anyone had seemed keen to hear my proposed future jabber. So, obviously, I reacted by telling her:
“Yeah, I’m not gonna do that post next now,”
Because I am a keen believer in giving the people what they want!
Does this picture actually convey what I was trying to say visually? I don't know, but it is in keeping with this weeks theme- 'pigeon abusing.'
Anyway, I was going to talk about Buddhism.
I’ll start with a funny story.
I was at meditation class, and my teacher was telling us how things aren’t really things, in that they’re just a collection of other bits. Here are some examples he used to illustrate his point:
- A football team is not a real thing, it’s just a collection of players
- A chair is not a real thing, it’s just… what do you call the bits of a chair? (he didn’t know and neither did we).
- A car is not a real thing, it’s just a collection of car bits (he knew the correct terminology that time)
He also gave lots of other examples, because he was sick for them (he’d give so many that his lessons actually started stressing me out, defeating the point of the meditation).
Anyway, after he’d done illustrating his point, a guy stood up and said:
“I think that what you’re saying is dangerous, because I’ve got to go and get a bus home in a minute, and if it turns out that the bus doesn’t exist, then I’m gonna have to walk twenty seven miles home!”
We all laughed.
Then we realized he was being serious.
So my teacher thought of some more examples to better illustrate his point…
The Buddhists I was knocking about with are part of the New Kadampa Tradition. Looking at that name now, it seems like ‘New Tradition’ is an oxymoron, but I’ll let them off, because they’re alright.
“That’s big of you. They must be thrilled.”
The New Kadampa Tradition Buddhists were founded by a dude called Kelsang Gyatso, and are perhaps most famous for their public falling out with the Dalai Lama.
“They fell out with the Dalai Lama? Isn’t he like… a really good guy?”
Kelsang Gyatso and the Dalai Lama both had the same teacher, a feller called Trijang Rinpoche. This guy, along with lots of other Buddhists, prayed to this dead person called Dorje Shugden, who they believed to be a kind of protector spirit.
After the Dalai Lama became top dog, he said (and this may not be word for word):
“Yo bitches, you gotta stop preying to Shugden, yeah? He is an evil demon, and evey time you give him respect it proper chafes my arsehole.”
The New Kadampa Tradition Buddhists weren’t happy about this.
“Err, fuck you buddy,” they retorted. “What are you even the head of?”
“Tibet man, innit.”
“Where? I don’t see any Tibet on the map. All I see is China.”
And the debate went on, probably nothing like that, for some sort of period of time.
“Err… what’s all this about demons and protector spirits? I thought that Buddhists didn’t believe in any of that jazz?”
No, as it turns out, a lot of Buddhists believe in all sorts of crazy wizard magic.
And I shall continue to talk about this, without really making any sort of useful points, in the future!