“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books.
Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it. “
How many of you get caught up in the drama of everyday life? Someone tells you something about someone else, a neighbor, a co-worker, a friend and you believe it. You see a news story and think you are hearing the whole story. The truth. But what is truth? Isn’t it usually truth as someone else sees it? It’s all subjective. My truth might not be your truth. But sometimes, ok, many times we think our truth is the only right one. That’s how wars start right? Or at the very least fist fights. Many religions think they know the truth. Egos get involved and the whole thing gets distorted.
How many of you hold on to beliefs that are passed down to you by your parents? Your church? Society?
Buddha said to question everything and only if it benefits all sentient beings, to accept it as truth.
I know that’s hard with all the conflicting information floating around today. But I think most of it is only opinion or “spin” to benefit those wanting to stay in power, especially when it comes from media.
When I was in my 30s my dad died at the age of 54. I had a meltdown, what I now call a “crisis of my soul.” I was depressed, angry and even thought about buying a gun and shooting myself. Where did all that come from? I’m guessing I was forced to look at my own mortality and I knew my dad always lived like he thought he was supposed to. He went through the motions of living but never really lived. I didn’t want to end up like him.
It would happen again 25 years later when I was diagnosed with cancer, but I reacted differently that time. Maybe it was because of all the self-help books I read 20 years earlier.
This time I was led to spiritual books along with healthy living books. It evolved to include Buddhism and continues to evolve, as I discover more authors writing essays I resonate with.