The Scott Shaw Blog

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Śūnyatā Verses the Destruction of Someone Else

On the news these days a lot of what you are hearing about is the attacks on and the destruction of the someone else. I mean, there are all those cowardly acts of men doing their Asian Hate Crimes on the elderly or the weak. In San Francisco, a small female cop was attacked by this big burly guy and, as they put it, he put her in a death grip. Luckily, bystanders came to her aid. Here in the L.A. area, yesterday, a firefighter went nuts and entered a fire station, shot and killed one firefighter and badly wounded another. Then, he went to this beautiful house he owned, killed himself, and burned it down. They say mass shootings are way-way up this year. There was a little kid killed on the freeway here in So. Cal last week by a road rage shooter. They are still looking for that car. I mean, what a mess!

Me, I speak about the realities of driving probably a bit too much. But, as long stated, the way people drive is very revealing about the depth of human behavior. What I have seen as this pandemic has waned is that though, on the surface, it seems that people are just driving badly, what I think is the reality of what is really taking place is that people have simply become very locked into themselves, have become very self-thinking, and they do not even consider that there are other people on the road.

In the recently weeks, I have watched as a lot of medical and mental professionals have been brought onto the talking head TV shows and have discussed why this style of behavior is taking place. They all reference and blame this or that as the causation. Some blame the isolation brought on by the pandemic. Others blame the financial woes instigated by it. Some blame the stress of the family in lock down. Some blame China for allowing the virus to be unleashed. Some even blame Trump. Okay??? But, no matter who or what anyone wants to blame the reality of the reality is, all things are born in the mind of one individual and how that person chooses to act and/or react.

All this makes me think of the Buddhist concept of Śūnyatā. Śūnyatā refers to the understanding of perfected emptiness. Though there are a lot of written interpretation and even some misunderstandings presented as fact, as is often the case, Śūnyatā defines that perfect state of voidness that exists in the mind when the zealot lets all things go and merges with the abstract reality of know-nothingness.

But, what does this mean and how can it adequate to you and/or this current reality? Quite simply, how much of your time do you spend in a space of nothingness? I would bet, very little. Verses, how much of your time do you spend thinking about what you think about, believing what you believing, casting your judgment in the way you cast your judgment; equaling the what you do and the who you do it to?

Let’s face facts, our society, our world, is based upon the definition of one person thinking and casting their judgment onto another. Everyone has an opinion. Everyone has their likes and their hates. In fact, we are taught that it is a good thing to develop your own mind and think what you think about whomever and whatever you are thinking about it. But, what do these thoughts actually equal? They equal judgment, which results in your saying things and doing things. Which, as in the case of the aforementioned people, equaled them doing some really horrific things.

Most people will say, I would never do anything like that. But, think about the negative words you have spoken, perhaps they have amplified a thought in the mind of another person, which resulted in them doing something negative or bad; all based upon your thought process, equaling your words.

As the old saying goes, words have consequences. Your thoughts have consequences. Certainly, your actions have consequences. But, as long as you are sitting there in a space of judgment, that you believe is due you, all you are creating is a world where negative things happens.

Most people feel as long as those negative things don’t happen to them, their karma is good. But, is it? Just because you seem okay and protected today, that does not mean that something negative will not happen to you tomorrow. Then what? Then, whom do you blame?

I always say to people that it is very important to think about what you say or what you do because it can cause others to act and react in a negative way. And, if what you say or do today sets a negative reaction in the life of someone else into motion that is what you will ultimately be defined by—that is what will come to set your ultimate karma into motion. But, who listens? Oftentimes negative words and deeds make the unenlightened feel all-powerful and good about themselves. But, look at the world; look at the actions of those who forceful hurt others, what was the birthplace of those deeds? Answer, a person’s thoughts feed by whomever and whatever.

So, what I am saying here? What I am saying is embrace Śūnyatā. Find that profound emptiness in you. In that place/in that state you hurt no one—you can hurt no one, you cause no one else to hurt anyone, as you are embracing the ultimate truth and the ultimate reality of human existence. Namely, no-thing-ness.

Try it. You will be amazed at the results.