Friday, May 28, 2010

Through Someone Else's Shoes

Author: Lucia Priandarini
Penulis Muslim sektor kewirausahaan
dan komunikasi

Our God is Nammyohorengekyo, the law of cause and effect itself.” That’s an answer given when I asked a good friend of mine a simple question: “Who is (your) God?” He’s a Buddhist, specifically an adherent of Niciren Syosyu, a branch of Mahayana denomination (so not all Buddhist would come up with the same answer when we ask them the question above). It’s a bit ashamed for me since we’ve been friends for more than five years, but I know almost nothing about his belief.

the law of cause and effect

It’s said that there are three different ways to live side by side with others, especially with those who cling to a different religious view from ours. First : domination. In this way of living together some people would say: “Nothing is better than my way of life or my religious view, so everyone must live together in peace in my way.” Since long ago, some people use it to justify their forcible annexation toward others. Second: relativity. “My religious view and yours are different. So we don’t need to discuss it at all. Just live t0gether as if we have the same perception about everything.” It’s the way common people live nowadays, causing apathy and severe distrust since they know almost nothing about other people’s belief (or even perhaps their own belief). No wonder it’s not hard to find a person to commit bombing (in the name of whatever they call God). Third: meeting point. Yes, we’re different. That’s why I need to know what your belief, your way of life, the way you see the world, is. So why don’t we talk?

So… I talk. To be honest, it’s not easy. There’s a little anxiety yet a ton of curiosity and excitement every time I voluntarily read, find out, or hear about other’s belief or other's religious view. I couldn’t help myself wondering, thinking, analyzing, and then of course comparing it towards my own. For all my life so far, I have been thinking that everyone will have the same perception that I cling to when they think of the word GOD. In my point of view, God is always be The One, The Creator of the universe and of my life. Well, the definition is not always like that, indeed. Moreover, in some belief, this world was not created, and our life after death is not always simply a crossroad between the heaven and hell.

After all, my goal is not to judge or decide which one is true or false, the best or the most irrational one (who knows the right point of view anyway?). I just learn to put myself to someone else’s shoes. To know the way they see God, the world, and this life. Even though surely there’s a bunch of things that are opposite to my own religious view, I can always examine it anyway by my own heart, common sense, and science of course, just like Buddha once said: BELIEVE NOTHING, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.In short, the belief in the law of cause and effect itself and the guidance of our reason, common sense, and science, are far better than the blind and uncritical religious belief of some people who aspire to establish a theocracy in the world.

Anyway, to my dearest Buddhist friend(s):Happy Vesak Day 2554 (May 28, 2010)
Sabbe satta bhavantu sukhitatha
May All be Well and Happy