Our issue, the real deal for us here in this community, is how to act in a sacred manner in this mess of relationships that are our lives.I don't know what to do about war or the polarization of political parties in this country. I vote. I didn't expect my elected representatives to be involved in power plays and war games. I think a lot of us are disheartened by it, and more frightened by the violence unleashed in the world in these times.
But James' words lead me to recall my part in things, to practice the Three Pure Precepts of a Zen student. They are to avoid doing harm, to act in ways that are beneficial, and to help free all beings from suffering. I find that when I keep these in mind, I have plenty of work to do. To be truthful, the first one alone is very demanding. To avoid doing harm, as Joan Halifax has pointed out, means to avoid injuring -
"Earth" - that's her capital letter. Make of it what you will.
You can read the rest of James's talk here.
May all beings be well, happy, and peaceful.
graphic by Susan Piver