Monday, October 25, 2010

Where should I place my COMPASSION...

Recently I am becoming more and more aware of the sufferings beings are facing. With so many calamities around the world, the pain face by human alone is already unspeakable. Although it is believe to be group karma, but one cannot think that way or else we will become inhumane.

In fact, it is difficult for one to feel the pain and suffering of another If one does not see, does not hear, does not feel, does not fear….one will think that the life one leads is similar with all others. This is not true and one’s sufferings are different from another. One’s enjoyment of peace and prosperity is not equal to the person standing next to you. Therefore you should count yourself lucky. Do not wish more or wish less of one self, just be happy with what you are now and what you have now, where you stay now and the safety and environment you are immerse in. We are always complaining that grass is greener on the other side, is that so?

Singapore is a very small island. You hardly see it on the map. Many know who we are but there are many more who do not know us. we are a safe little island and away from the typhoon that wrack havoc around our neighbors. We are away from heavy rainfall that flood a country causing landslides and burying everything as it goes. We experienced tsunami, a very minor one causing minor damages as compared to other neighbors around us, and we have a big heart to always donate as much as we can…after all we are only a small island.

I saw the sufferings and it pains my heart. The 911 bombing in USA, the 512 earthquake in Sizhuan, the flood in Myanmar, the tsunami hitting so many countries around South East Asia and Asia Pacific and now Typhoon Magi killing so many in Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan – can I ignore these? I cannot because I watched news and the reports and pictures are enough to bring tears to my eyes.

Animals have their fair share of woes. The earth is no longer a safe place for them. Humans need more and more places to put up homes and for agriculture and these animals are force out of their natural habitats. On top of that, they are food for our survival. As if these are not enough, we killed them for their fur. If you see how brutally they are killed for ‘’good to have” items and not “must have” items, you probably will be indifferent about it because it does not involve you. WRONG! It will because once these animals go into extinction, the future generation will not know what they are. There are people who buy all these so called exotic goods…expensive and they pay through their nose for it. Of course, because it caused other people’s life to get the goods on their body as accessories or food.

Now Singapore is facing their yearly HAZE, so bad that buildings around are visually covered in mist. These are burning of lands or plantations in neighboring Indonesia. Again animals are roasted alive, whether on the ground or below the ground with extensive heat, and neighbors are inhaling all these polluted smoke. Talking about being environmental... it is about survival for Indonesia.

I am no kinder because I am not a vegetarian nor a vegan. I am aware and I eat only what I need. There are many food on the table and many ways to cook them, I do not need exotic animals meats. I do not need shark fins, I do not need to eat a fish fried alive, I do not need to eat a fetus with its placenta attached to prove that I am virile, I do not need to eat dog meat to keep me warm, I do not need to eat crocodile head boiled with all kind of herbs to help me perform on bed… I just eat simple food and it is bad enough because there are chicken, pork, mutton and beef. I have stopped all seafood except for fish. I am not preaching that anyone or everyone must be a vegetarian BUT at least do support unnecessary killing.

Recently again it came to my email on the killing of dolphins on an island off Denmark. Friend told me that it is not dolphins, it is whales and again this island is not part of Denmark and neither is it under UN…It actually does not matters to me who and what they are. Will people have no feeling when they see this sea of blood? The people who kill, did they feel it when the animal struggle to live?

A friend said that people who kill chicken and pigs, sheep and cows for our consumptions are just as bad, so I should not discriminate. To be frank, from the bottom of my heart…I have no right to discriminate as I eat these meats too. IT IS COMPASSION…and I am wondering whether I have no right to being COMPASSIONATE because I eat meat? So where should I placed my COMPASSION.

I felt disgusted when I see the sea of blood. If I do not feel …COMPASSION…I have lost the ground to practice Buddhism.

That is why I pray before consuming my food – I thank the animals for being food for me. They have provided me with the energy to survive so that I have wisdom to practice. When I attained my wishes the merits goes to them and may they be liberated from sufferings too. For all those who make it possible for the food to be on my table, I wish them same. For all those who cook and make it consumables, I pray same. May I eat with awareness, with gratitude, with wisdom and fulfilled my ultimate goal to benefit beings.

In the name of the merciful Amitofo….

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