By Andy Martin
Looking at history we see evidence of all that is great in man, and all that is puny. We see time & again that individuals dedicate themselves to the betterment of fellow human beings, to animals & to the planet. Such people are rightly celebrated although some are sadly not recognized during their own lifetimes & fated to receive posthumous merit.
We live in a world of extremes. Technological advancement is at gross odds with the behavior of a great percentage of the people in different parts of the globe. Not even that, from room to room & city block to city block.
I have already mentioned in an earlier blog that it seems impossible or incredulous that part of the world is enlightened & living a quality of life that cannot even be imagined, by those whom for the most part, are living in the darkest ignorance & teeth grinding poverty.
It is painful to see the countenances of those in Bangladesh who have nothing left worth speaking of, following the visitation of Cyclone Sidr. And we can add to the list of weather disasters yet another huge super cell that has devastated the feeble grip of humanity in that forsaken part of the world.
Yet in Majorca, San Tropez & Beverly Hills, others more fortunate switch on tiny remote controls attached to keyrings. Silent garage doors magically glide open to admit "The Bentley" or "The Aston."
Nothing wrong with Aston Martin or Bentley - two of my own favorite cars as it happens - I´d love one. But, I can live without either. I spoke in my last blog about balance. We need balance of the mind & body first so as to look at life with a balanced view. Extremes are forms of illness - mental illness. Buddhist teaching advocates quite fundamentally that: "Right thought leads to right actions."
Forgive me for saying so, but if we apply that as our yardstick, the majority of mankind is truly insane. I ask you all - is it sane to proceed in the pursuit of nuclear power when we have not the faintest idea of how to contain its byproducts - which to all intents & purposes, last forever? Is it sane to pour so much money into that poison coffer when we ought to be diverting investment into clean energy sources? All we have succeeded in doing is excavating the blanket of oil under the earth's crust & shoving it in another form over our heads. And this insanity persists & at the same time, we base global economies on the very stuff - which is rather pointedly, the remnant of an extinction event of eons past.
Is it sane to sell to unstable Governments & tin pot Generalissimos the very stuff of atomic weaponry & other weapons of domination & human persecution? Would the sane amongst us give little children boxes of matches & tins of paraffin to play with? Would they perhaps burn the house down?
Is it sane to stand idly by & watch as Japanese ships slip their anchors so that they can slaughter humpback whales, which so many balanced people have struggled to try & protect? By what right is this permissible? Why is this still an issue when the sane amongst us know that this story is a closed book & a won argument? What morons are standing by & allowing it to continue?
Is it sane to believe in Divine intervention or other Godheads that plainly do not exist, save for in the wildest imaginings of human ignorance? Or, to build such beliefs into our Constitutions or make wars in the presumptions that we are advancing the cause of humanity?
If a group of people cannot agree about whether or not it is permissible in the year of 2007 to slaughter an intelligent, benign species called humpback whales - I give you the opinion that it is impossible, totally impossible - period, for the human race to follow any other pathway that will lead anywhere but to a disastrous end. Not just the extinction of species that humankind has no right to persecute in the first place, but extinction of its own self. In this madness, this insanity and non. commonality of purpose, we are self-destruction & plunging headlong toward a Doomsday of our very own making.
In a perfect world, we would have stamped out all war. We would have put an end to grinding poverty & despair. We would as a species have embraced other cultures & be working en masse for the benefit of all - & vitally, for the preservation of our planet & all its myriad life forms. Yet we cannot & will not. In the end, it will be left to rats, cockroaches & insects who will become the new janitors. Whatever crawls out of the slime next time around will have to start again.
In a perfect world, we would have globally abandoned all notions of Gods & Godheads & would make common sense our icon. We would not tolerate belief systems that have nothing to with reality & that are rooted in the dark ignorance of the past, or sheer fantasy. We would instead cherish values of kindness & understanding & of morality - fundamental building blocks of an ordered society - & become a united global family of benign humanity overflowing with the milk of human kindness & all that is great in us.
Instead, we have chosen a pathway of bitter enmity, divisive ignorance & thoughts of such radical irrational imbalance that we are assured instead of the ultimate decree of nature - extinction.
In our short tenure of this beautiful planet, we have increased our species to the point of saturation inasmuch as what can be sustained. In so doing, our species has in the past committed genocide against other peoples of other nations - & continues to do so on the flimsiest of whims.
As much as I would like to believe that mankind can raise itself up & walk tall, instead of dragging its collective knuckles through the dirt like some freakish Mr. Hyde - I see no future for it. Instead, I see the countenance of nature itself, full of wrath against the monster it helped to create.
In closing, let me illustrate another scenario of how insane our established thinking is. I shall now describe to you the wondrous mental evolution, brilliance & prowess of the human race - summed up below as it really is:
A typical Doomsday scenario around the word´s major cities, or to be more accurate - underneath them. Timeline - feasibly any day soon at a location near you!
Vast networks of tunnels have been excavated all around the world under the major cities or hidden elsewhere, where the top politicians, works of art, VIPs (? - Is that you reader?) are all to be sheltered when the big enchilada hits the fan. Imagine this scene:
THE UK BUNKER: (but substitute your own locality & language) "Well Ladies & Gentlemen - there is some good news & some bad news - & there is quite a lot of that I´m afraid - er...the oceans have poisoned beyond all repair, the major cities of the world have been vaporised, life & mankind as we knew it is now radio-active ash. The birds are all dead, or soon will be. There are few human survivors anywhere, a nuclear winter is on the way, the green parts of the world still left will soon become vast radio-active dust bowls. The air is filled with screaming winds bearing poisonous gasses & radio-active elements - the very Earth itself & every living thing upon it is dead, or dying. It is THE END.
Now the good news:
"The Royal Family has survived, so has the Pope, the Archbishop of Canterbury & the Mona Lisa!"
The scenario just described is not my imaginings dear reader - not at all. This is the game plan of your elected leadership. If this sounds sane to you, then I have some timeshare for you that I have constructed at Chernobyl. So, for those of us that are sane & can be bothered to have read this "blog", I would suggest you get on with life as best you can & not put your faith in anything but your own common sense. There may be great individuals amongst us, but they have a small voice & are shouted down by the rule of the insane, who govern the insane who voted the insane to do what they do.
A new world order is surely required but my opinion is that mankind will not be part of it. Mankind does not have the nonce to even establish it although it may desire it. A Buddhist I am not, but the suggestion that right thought leads to right actions seems to me the very essence of sanity. And it also seems to me that anything that the sane amongst us can achieve will be a case of too little, too late. Nature will over-ride all in its quest for perfect balance.
The smallness of our minds nor the sophistication of our weapons can challenge it, for the Cosmos itself is the omega & the alpha & all else besides as it ever seeks the balance point, wiping out what in cold casualty what it deems to be unworthy. Mankind en masse is patently unworthy, save for those souls that have reached down inside their innermost selves & found the balance point.