Dividing the world into good guys and bad guys in the face of violence Barry Magid June 18th 2016

In the face of violence we are asked to give special attention to the perpetrators. When there is violence we inevitably divide the world into perpetrators and victims. That division is precisely the separation that the Bodhisattva's vow asks us to look at. We are all prone to make the kinds of divisions that lead to the violence we condemn.

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Bodhisattva's Vow

When I, a student of the way,
look at the real form of the universe,
all is the never-failing manifestation,
of the mysterious truth of the awakened life.
In any event, in any moment, and in any place,
none can be other than the marvelous revelation,
of its glorious light.
This realization made our ancestors and teachers,
extend tender care, with respectful hearts,
even to such beings as birds and beasts.
This realization teaches us,
that our daily food, drink, clothes, and protections of life,
are the warm flesh and blood,
the merciful incarnation of the awakened one.
Who can be ungrateful or not respectful,
even to senseless things, not to speak of human beings?
Even though they may be fools,
be warm and compassionate towards them.
If by any chance they should turn against us,
become a sworn enemy and abuse and persecute us,
we should sincerely bow down with humble language,
in the reverent understanding that
they are the merciful messengers of the awakened one,
who use devices to emancipate us from blind tendencies,
produced and accumulated upon ourselves,
by our own egoistic delusion and attachment,
through countless cycles of space and time.
Then on each moment’s flash of our thought,
there will grow a lotus flower;
And on each lotus flower will be revealed perfection,
unceasingly manifest as our life,
just as it is, right here and right now.
May we extend this mind to all beings,
so that we and the world together
may attain maturity in the wisdom of the awakened life.

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