“You > your brains > the space around you > your family and friends > society > state > media > so-called world affairs” http://taotechingdecoded.com/01to10/0500b.html
This snippet comes from a weird, little website that I have long found intriguing about the Tao. I don’t really understand it, but I resonate with it.
I like how the article’s emphasis is on taking responsibility for your thoughts. Thich Nhat Hanh is so right about how an un-peaceful person cannot create peace. Take whatever you think and multiply it by millions of people and you quickly see how an ugly thought pattern can create chaos rippling out in every direction.
I like how Zen is a marriage of Taoism, Buddhism, and Japanese culture. Taoism gives Zen its balanced, holistic nature. Buddhism gives Zen its Bodhisattva generosity, and Japanese culture gives Zen its minimalism (funny how minimalist one can be living with a gazillion others on the same rinky-dink island).
After all, what we see depends on what we have been programmed to see. Put any two people in the same situation and they will walk out with completely different impressions and conclusions. The minute you try to change others in this self-selected version of reality, you will encounter their resistance coming from their own projections.
Harmony comes from taking responsibility for one’s own projections and meeting one’s own needs, not looking for solutions “out there” because there is no “out there.” Those unmet needs are “in here”, come from the past, and can’t be met today because we are foisting them subconsciously upon unsuspecting others. Been there, done that. You end up playing a game with yourself. The solution comes from dealing with the unresolved feelings within yourself. You can play out the situation and complete those incomplete actions (by yourself or with a therapist) because your subconscious doesn’t know the difference between the past and current “reality.”
In a world that continually demands more, Zen/the Tao says, “For what?” What need are you trying to meet? How will having a physical object scratch this psychic itch? Consumerism is endless because it is ultimately pre-defeated. It has no ability to address the needs it claims to fulfill. The argument and its resolution are all within.
I once heard this definition of addiction: creating a fantasy world and then trying to live there. That is consumerism. It is so tempting…and empty.