Listening to the Cries of the World

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As always, we are in crisis. And more than usual now, I hear from people expressions of sadness, grief, discouragement, fear, depression, feeling small, feeling helpless, feeling confused, And I don't hear so much, but I sense also feelings of anger, even hatred, even ill will in some people all over this country, all over the world.


And more intense now maybe than a couple of weeks ago. I aspire to welcome all this, to witness it with eyes of compassion and ears of compassion. We don't usually, I don't usually use the expression evil age, or age of evil. But in ancient times, the ancestors of the Bodhisattva tradition did use the term evil age.


Supposedly the Buddha brought this up. I don't know if the Buddha brought it up or the Bodhisattvas brought it up. But either the Buddha brought it up or the Bodhisattvas asked, how can we take care of the Buddha's teaching in an evil age when people are depressed and grieving and angry and confused and even hostile to the Bodhisattva way and the Bodhisattva teachings. And the Buddha says, firmly uphold the teachings. the Buddha exhorts, admonishes us to be firm in our taking care of the teaching and holding it up.


But also to uphold it uprightly and gently and flexibly and harmoniously and honestly. And again, the Bodhisattvas ask the Buddha, how can we maintain, how can we take care of the teaching in an evil age? And the Buddha says, by practicing patience, gentleness, nonviolence, tranquility, openness, and not encouraging attachment to anything, and also not being attached to anything, even these practices.


and also realize the truth of reality. This is how to take care of the teaching. In very difficult times, when there's intense possibility of harm and injury, to the whole world and each part of it. If bodhisattvas try to practice patience and gentleness and nonviolence under certain circumstances, people may disapprove of their nonviolence and their patience and their gentleness.


People may even attack them and abuse them if they practice patience and non-violence and gentleness and non-attachment. And if that happens, then the Buddha's instruction is, continue those practices if that happens. Continue to compassionately observe and listen to with ears of compassion. Even people who hate you for listening with ears of compassion to people that they hate and that they disagree with.


People I love and people who love me voted differently than I did in the election. A friend of mine told me about a meeting with someone who voted differently than she did. And the friend said, you know, I was going to stay away from you and the other people around here because I was afraid. Because I was afraid of their sorrow and their grief. and their disappointment and their anxiety. I was afraid to be with them when I don't feel that way, when I voted in a way that they're very sorry I voted.


But I'm here with you. to tell you that I acknowledge that you may be really frightened and discouraged and depressed and sick with the situation. I'm here to acknowledge that. And that's how I felt when Mitt Romney lost, I felt that way. But even the people who are not feeling depressed and frightened for the welfare of the world and discouraged and sad, even those people also are in crisis together with all of us.


If there are times where there's not such an intense possibility of harm and injury, to our world, in our world, the practice is the same. It's just that we have to be very firm about remembering that we don't give up the practice when things become horrible, when things become terrifying, when we feel attacked and abused. We don't stop the practice and we don't attach to it. We uphold the practice of the Bodhisattva even in evil age.


And this is how we, together with all beings, can maintain the Buddha Dharma. And that in doing so, the great earth and all living beings together will attain the Buddha way. But it's very difficult because our past karma makes it very difficult to compassionately witness all this suffering. to compassionately welcome all beings into our life.


And wholeheartedly offer this presence to all beings. And in this way, develop the conversation, the dialogue with all beings And if you feel sick and grief and sadness and disappointment, part of our practice is to be still and silent so that we can open to our own sadness and grief.


So that we can let go of what we've lost. And so we can be ready, be ready for the present moment of practicing compassion towards ourselves and others. But when we feel sadness and grief, we may need to be still so we can open to that feeling. And opening to that feeling will help us be ready for the present challenges. One of them being to feel the sadness, to open to the sadness. and the maybe feeling of sickness.


And the feeling of sadness and sickness may come to us again in waves after waves. Like somebody said to me, you know, in the pauses it comes to me. It's like you're driving down the road and then maybe you stop at a stop sign and then it comes. Or you're running around the supermarket and you don't feel it, but then when you stand still, it comes. So we should have some still time to let it come. And it may come many, many times. As somebody said, it's really painful, it's very painful, and it's going to be painful for a long time. But can we open our mind and open our heart to help each other.


And many people say, it's so hard to do that. And that's a mild form of what they might say. they might really hate that way of responding. And then, again, can we witness that with compassion? Or do we want to? Do we want to? And I don't want to turn this into me telling you you should do these practices. I'm just telling you that this is what the Buddha taught the bodhisattvas who wanted to take care of the teaching even in evil times.


If they want to take care of the teaching, they ask, how can we take care of the teaching? The Buddha says, this is how. But Buddha didn't tell them, hey, you should take care of the teaching like this. They said they wanted to and they knew that the Bodhisattvas wanted to take care of the teaching. They wanted to. The Buddha didn't say, you should take care of the teaching. They wanted to. They sensed the Buddha was gonna go away. So, when the Buddha's around, maybe things are not so bad. But when the Buddha goes, when the Buddha's not right in people's face, then how are we, Bodhisattvas, going to take care of the teaching? And so, if they want to know how, this is how. But this is not the Buddha telling you, you should do this. The Buddha is just saying, this is the way I recommend, if you want to take care of the teaching.


If you don't feel ready, or somebody else isn't ready for these practices, then again, we should be gentle with them, and patient with them, and non-violent with them, and not nasty towards them, and not be attached to them getting with the program, or ourselves getting with the program. And part of compassion is to say, I'm not yet ready to be patient with this. I'm not yet ready to be gentle with this. Okay? That's part of compassion. That's the honesty part. This is too much for me. That can be an expression of your honesty. When you have that thought that this is too much for me or I'm not ready to practice with this, what is the physical practice in that moment?


Yeah, this is a physical practice. It's a physical practice of being patient with the thought, I'm not ready for this. To be gentle with that thought. To be non-violent with that thought. Don't try to get rid of that thought. Don't kill that thought. So when you're busy working, say, and you catch yourself with that thought, it's a good idea to stop in that moment, physically, and to acknowledge that you're becoming overwhelmed and that you're having a hard time. When you say you're working, what do you mean by working? I'm imagining myself with a busy mind. And I've already probably forgotten the practice. But when that overwhelm comes... What's the overwhelm? You're doing some busy work.


Are you overwhelmed by the work? Maybe so. Being overwhelmed by work is... You know, I guess you could say a form of evil. But it's not as bad as some of these other things. But anyway, I think when I feel I'm overworked or I'm overworking, I would like to be gentle with that, be patient with that, be non-violent with me overworking or feeling like I'm being asked to overwork. I would like to practice the same practices with us. But lately I'm not hearing about that right now. I'm hearing about people feeling like somebody else is going to do some great harm. But the same practice. So me overworking is one way to get distracted from compassion.


But it's also possible to work hard at compassion and remember compassion while you're working hard at practicing compassion. It's also possible to overwork at compassion and by overworking at compassion you forget to practice compassion. Of course, it's also possible to underwork at compassion and forget to practice compassion, or forget to practice compassion and then not do it. But sometimes people can be working at compassion and they overdo it. They care too much. And you can catch that and be kind to that too much compassion. Too much compassion means caring too much to a point where you basically, you say I can't do it anymore.


You like abandon beings because you care too much for them. Now some people abandon beings because they don't care enough. But many people abandon beings because they care too much. either form of abandonment, I would like to be patient with. Over-caring or under-caring. And if I'm carrying the right amount, well then I continue that. And if I'm getting so busy with my work that I can't remember to be patient and gentle while I'm working, then that's not what I want. And if I notice it, I say, oh yeah, I was working, but I lost my gentleness while I was working. I was having a conversation with somebody, which is my job, is to talk with them, and I lost contact with gentleness and patience.


I was talking to them, and they started talking more than I, they said they talked a lot, and I started to lose my patience with them. even though my job is to have a conversation with them and to listen to them. And then they talk so much that I lost my patience, and I'm sorry I lost my patience. I think it's, you know, when you're talking to somebody and you're listening to somebody, and they start talking, and you start to feel uncomfortable, there's a question of how much you should endure the discomfort when it comes, and how long you should go on like that before you raise your hand and you say, may I ask a question? You know, somebody's going, and you start to feel uncomfortable. That was a good example.


I mean, following the instruction. I don't think I expressed myself clearly there. What you said is very relevant to me. I think a lot of us right now get stimulated about this issue from, I imagine myself on my computer in the day, reading things in a social media context and being tempted to say something that is to counter a point of view of someone else. And in that moment, I pretty much decided for myself that that's not really a good forum to express your points of view and have a compassionate and productive conversation. I appreciate your response to what I said.


It does get to part of the heart of the matter for me. But I was more so interested in the moment, if you acknowledge to yourself that you are not ready to not feel angry at what's happening, and you are tempted to behave from that idea, I mean, I guess I know the answer myself. I think. You stop. If somebody's talking and you have something to say, you said to counter them. You could say, oh, I have something to counter what they said. You could realize that in yourself. And then you can look to see, can I offer this counterpoint, which is sometimes part of beautiful music, counterpoint, can I offer this counterpoint in a harmonious, gentle, upright, and honest way?


And is it the right time to offer it? Can I offer this out of patience and gentleness? And like you just did, you say, may I ask a question? And the person says, well, what do you want to ask? And you might say, well, I'd like to ask if I could offer a counterpoint. And they might say yes, or they might say no. But you felt like, hey, that was pretty good. They were going boom, [...] and I went boom, and they said boom, and then I went boom. That was pretty good. They did this, I raised my hand, they called on me, I asked a question, they gave a response, that led me to make my offering. Yeah, this is like, this is the dialogue starting.


even though I have counterpoints to their points. And also their points sometimes when they're coming are like at a certain point in their making their points, I sometimes feel difficult to be patient and wait for my turn. So before I go too far, and I still feel some patience, before I go too far, Maybe I'll raise my hand and say, before I lose my patience, I want to ask a question. You could even say, I'm on the verge of losing my patience, I'm so sorry, but I haven't lost it yet. Can I ask a question? I have this thought, do you want to hear it?


That to heal this world, to heal this country, we've got to have a dialogue with people who have counterpoint ideas from ours. We need, like this person I told you about whose friend said to her, you know, I really want to acknowledge that you're in a lot of pain. about this election. I want to acknowledge that." And the ones whose pain was acknowledged said, and I want to talk to you, I want to understand your point of view, how you could vote the way you did. I want to talk to you about that sometime. So we have millions and millions, billions, billions of conversations, of dialogues. that are necessary in order for there to be peace and harmony in this country, in this world.


And it's not only difficult to have the conversations, it's difficult to be somewhere where the people who have different views from you live. Because even some of the people who live in San Francisco are afraid to be near the majority because they're afraid the majority will hate them. And some of the people in California are afraid to go to Alaska, where the majority is really different from California. So the conversations are difficult, but there are people who live around here who have different views from many of us. And they're hiding from us because we're the majority. but we can talk to them, and we can start with that, and then we can also go to, I don't know where, Texas, and I'm going to Texas.


Now, different parts of Texas are different. Like the country is more red than the cities are more blue, and I usually go to the city. So, am I gonna go out in the country? where the guns are? I don't know. But I think that there needs to be a lot of conversation, a lot of dialogue, a lot of face-to-face stuff going on between people of different views in this country. Just one interesting thing to me was that the Some people would like to move into a neighborhood where they could have a bigger house, but they would have to travel farther to go to work. Other people would like to live in a smaller house. They don't necessarily want a smaller house, but if they had a choice between a small house where they don't have to drive much to work,


over a big house where they would have to commute a long distance, some people would choose the smaller house with not much commute distance. Other people would rather have the big house and the big yard and a distance between them and the next neighbor, even though they have to drive a long ways to work. the conservatives are more in the big house, long-distance commute than the liberals. So as a result, the liberals are living near their work and the conservatives farther away, so the liberals and the conservatives don't meet except at work. So work is one of the main places where, you know, if you're a short commuter, you can meet the long commuters at work. However, in certain neighborhoods, if there's mostly short commuters in the room, the long commuters may be afraid to tell you their views. So we need to maybe invite and ask people to tell us how they're feeling about this world.


I really favor what you're advising, And I want to get back to this issue of stories that you taught so much about. About how we have stories that are just our story and how we can come into contact with people of different stories. But having this dialogue, which I've started a little bit with actually relative, I come up where I really feel, what's the word, I feel flummoxed, I don't know what to do, is bringing up the issue of climate change. Because then I'll get the response that it's a hoax, and that there is no such thing. And I can talk together with a conservative about jobs and things that are happening palpably, But I just find that with this issue, which to me seems overwhelmingly urgent, there's denial, even though these same people, if there were a fire down the street, and I live in an area actually with a lot of big working class white population,


And I know many of them are Trump supporters. I know these people would come running if my house were on fire, that they're really helpful. And you would run to their house. Yes, and I would run to their house. Even though you're not a big white person. I'm a little kind of white, kind of not white person. Yeah, I know what you mean. But this issue of climate change, which is, as I assume everyone here knows, is overwhelmingly urgent. is not, right now the sky isn't falling even though it actually could. So I just want to express that I feel really helpless and frustrated about doing a dialogue about this. Thank you so much. So you have one story and some other people have another story. And Bodhisattvas have the assistance of the teaching, do not attach to your story.


So I have a story, and this person has a story, and they're different, but I have a teaching which is don't attach to Reb's story. And the practice then is for me to learn their story, not to attach to their story, but to try to understand their story. Even though I never will, I'll try, and they can feel me trying. If they see me trying to understand their story, then they might try to understand my story. Now they may never understand my story, but we're trying to understand each other's stories. And it's not that I throw my story out the window and she throws her story out the window. It's that we both, by trying to understand the other person's story, that helps us let go of our story, or vice versa.


If I can let go of my story, I can work to understand his story, which I never will, maybe. Maybe I will switch to his story, but even before I switch to his story, I can let go of mine, and she can see I'm trying to understand hers, and then she may say, well, maybe I'll let go of mine and try to understand his, or maybe I'll try to understand his, and in the process she lets go of hers. However, she still has her story and I still have mine. Upright, firm with your story. My story is, I want to practice nonviolence. This is my understanding of what nonviolence is. That's my story. And this person says, maybe violence is, I don't know what, okay. And I let go of my story, of my commitment to nonviolence, and swivel and relax and open to their story, which is not my story.


So I've told you this story, not a hundred times, But more than once, I'm having dinner with my spouse and another couple who is a foursome. And there was a male husband and a female wife. They were doing that. And my wife says to the husband, where do you work? And the husband said, Irvine, California. And my wife says, what's Irvine like? And he says, it's beautiful. This is the oral transmission. It's beautiful. And his wife said, it's ugly. And he says, it's ugly. And my wife turns to me and said, you should learn that.


But was he really seeing it ugly? Was he really? Probably not. Probably not. Probably he still had his story. But maybe not. Maybe he actually switched. I don't know. But if he didn't switch, let's say he'd actually switched to it's ugly. then I could say to him, it's beautiful, and he could switch and say, it's beautiful. That's what we want to learn. It isn't throwing your thing out and grabbing another story, like global warming's a hoax. You don't then grab that one. You receive it and compassionately witness it, and in doing so, you let go of it. And then you can have a dialogue with people who have a different view. And in that dialogue is where the real resolution and protection of beings lives. Not in my story of what protects the world.


The world is protected by me having my story, and you having your story, and both of us letting go of it in dialogue. That's how we protect beings. We can try to hold on to our story of how to protect beings, and other people can hold on to theirs, and some of them agree with us, and some of them don't. But if we're attached to our views, that's not the way to protect beings. The way to protect beings is for me to let go of my view in dialogue with you. So it's not just like, oh, I let go of my views. You get to test me to see if I really did. And I test you to see if you really did. But not exactly testing you, but just talking to you. That's enough to find out, oh, I am a little stuck here. Or she seems to be stuck, and I'm kind of stuck, and her seeming to be stuck. Or I'm not stuck, and her being stuck. Well, prove it. Let's see you demonstrate.


Uprightness, this is my story, yes. I'm upright, I'm honest about it, but I also want to be harmonious with it, even though I sense, and part of my story is, your story is different from mine. Yes. I can feel my energy just listening to this get kicked up because I feel like it's a false equivalency. If we're talking about people don't believe in science and are giving a tacit approval to bigotry. That's kind of my point where I just can't get past that. Yeah, it's really hard to get... So, I'm not going to try to convince somebody by having a dialogue. No, it's not that I'm trying to convince you by having a dialogue with you. I'm trying to protect beings by having a dialogue with you. The dialogue is what I'm trying to have.


I'm not trying to convince you. I'm trying to convert you to peace, which means I want you to let go of your view. But if I don't let go of mine, I can't show you how to let go of yours. It's a false equivalency. What's the false... I heard you say something about some people are so fearful they put other people down and do you want to include those people in your life? Abstractly, in my heart and my compassion practice.


Abstractly, yeah. Thank you. That's as much as I can do. That's as much as you can do right now, yeah. Do you aspire to someday actually have friends with these people who you say are so afraid that they're putting people down? Do you want to have those people be your friends? Do you aspire to that? I am not okay with bigotry and misogyny, so no, actually, I can't do it. You can't have what? No, my life is too short for that. It's too short for that or too short to aspire to that? Do I want to have bigots? As your close friends? Okay, so in my life, I wanna be friends with you. I wanna be friends with you. I'm actually enjoying working on our friendship.


It's one of my favorite friendships. And my friend, who I call you, doesn't have the same values that I do. My value is I want to be close friends with bigots. And I want to be friends with you who do not want to be close friends with bigots. I really do want to be your friend, and I'm enjoying working on it with you right now. I'm having a really good time telling you that I want to include bigots, and I hear you don't, and I want to totally accept that you don't. And I do not want to put you down. But I do want to be friends with people who do put other people down. I want to be friends with people who disparage, look down upon, think they're better than, who hate, who don't, who deny science.


I want to be friends with them. close friends. And you, who already are my good friend, you don't want to and I still want to be friends with you even though you don't accept this part of the project that I'm working on. And I think I already understand your position because I, although I want to be close friends with bigots, if there are such things, I do want to be close friends with people who are afraid and who put people down. My granddaughter is afraid of the president-elect. My granddaughter puts the president-elect down, and I love her very much. I totally want to include her who does not want him in her life. Anyway, I'm having trouble myself, but I aspire to be friends with these people who are putting people down. Because it is absolutely necessary for Buddhahood, for there to be a Buddha in the world.


And it's necessary because what I really am right now is I do already include all bigots. I already include all bigots. I already include all bigots. I already include all people who deny science. I already do include all people who are scientists. I already do include everybody. That's why I need to practice this way, because that's what I am. Evil is already part of me. I include it already. I am I am the evil age. I am DT. I am HC. And I love HC. I love her values of inclusivity.


Which means that she would include DT. And I would like DT to realize that DT includes HC. I would like that. I want that. I want him, I want you all to realize that you, each of you already includes all the entire universe with all its good and all its evil. That's Buddha's teaching. And it's Buddha's teaching which is the way we really are. So this practice is about being the way we really are. And when we're the way we really are, that's called also peace. And in peace, we can have this dialogue. If we get into war, We can't even talk to each other and we can't even... So I don't want war. I want peace so we can work on peace.


So we can work out the kinks. We can work out the places where we feel like, well, I include him and him and her, but not him. That's too much. Well, then I want to practice compassion with the person I can't, with myself not being able to include. That person who I do include, I do include him and I'm happy with the teaching that tells me I include all of you, but still sometimes I can't accept that teaching and I can't accept that practice. And then I'm kind to myself who's not good at including all the people who say, let's exclude. Like some people, Kriya, exclude rats, but you don't. Yeah. So I'm glad I got a friend who doesn't exclude rats, but I want to be friends with the people who do exclude rats. And at Green Gulch, at Green Dragon Temple right now, they got rats.


And so people are trying to figure out, how can we relate to these rats? And at my daughter's house, they got rats. So they're trying to figure out how to close the entry points of the rats. They found six places the rats are coming in. And I'm not going over there and saying, hey, let's be inclusive. But I want to include my loved ones who are trying to... And I remember one time I saw a rat come running towards my daughter when she was just a tiny baby. And I didn't want that rat to bite her little cheeks. I didn't want that to happen. And I went, boo, go away rat. I didn't want that rat to go away. I didn't want to include that rat. I'm sorry. I didn't say, oh, dear rat, let's go outside, okay, sweetheart? For Kriya, but for me it's hard sometimes to include people, but I aspire to it, Kriya.


You got a friend who aspires to include the people who don't, who hate rats and want to kill them. You got a friend like that. And he's patiently and joyfully having a conversation with you. And I'm patient with myself to get to the point I'm talking about. I'm patient with myself to really practice inclusivity. In other words, to really practice reality. I'm patient with myself when I don't practice that way. These people are not appreciating me. I think I'm going to go to another temple. You don't like my teaching?


Okay, I'll go to another temple. What they do? I'll teach you. No, no, no. We approve of your teaching. Don't go. I got them to go my way. But I don't want to do that. I want to stay where everybody doesn't appreciate me. Oh, a lot of hands. Good. Yes, Kirk and Karen and Homa and was there somebody else? Oh, and Ira. I just wanted to mention something that's been helpful for me over the last day, which is probably the only thing I remember And it was some research that was done about the difference between Republicans and Democrats. And the research evidently has been redone and they keep finding the same result.


And what was interesting is that for Republicans in a word, the thing that would describe them is fearful. And the thing that would describe Democrats is hopeful. And it's interesting to me because when you see all the campaigns that go on over the years, they really adhere to those elements, fear, hope. And one of the things that I thought about today before coming here was that if my Republican brethren are making decisions based on that fear, Well, I can really relate to that, because I've been fearful about many things in my life. And that might be a basis of talking with them and relating to them. But it also gives me an understanding about where they may be coming from, too, which can help to open that dialogue that we're talking about.


So I thought that information might be helpful. Karen? Can you hear them, Barry? Just. So, loudly, Karen, so that Barry can hear. I have a friend who is one of my oldest friends. And I really love her. And I think she loves me. She voted in a way I didn't vote for reasons, you know, I don't agree with. And I have been listening to her for months talk about how she feels when people call her a bigot, and all the other things that they call her. And the night before the election, I called her to say, I hope you're taking care of yourself. I love you. And she returned that.


But at that point, I thought that my view was going to win. So now the dynamic is different. And I find myself really disappointed that I listen to her feelings for months and she doesn't want to hear about mine. So I'm just kind of stuck with that. Well, somebody does want to hear yours. Well, I really feel awful I really feel awfully bad. About the election? And that she doesn't want to hear you? And that she doesn't want to hear me. And that the election itself implies a level of bigotry in this country that really disappoints me. Yeah, so I witness your disappointment.


I agree too, but inherent in that, can you acknowledge too, that I've always been a fan of the Wizard of Oz, and can you acknowledge even the Tin Man saying, now I know I have a heart because it's breaking, because what's going on here is really messy. But can we all acknowledge the depth of love that we have, and can we not lean away or into it, but can we stand with this? and feel that, and let it break us open, you know, because otherwise what happens to the body, it tenses up, it becomes sick and ill, so, you know, can you allow those fears and that to happen in the morning, to break down, which I've had that too, and we all have had that, but then can I go on with my life and be open and feel it, you know, I grew up at the beach, and I used to get caught in these tidal waves, or you know, the riptide, and you learn, I mean, the beach is a beautiful thing, and the ocean, but when you're in a riptide, The best thing to do is not to fight it. You fill it so you're enveloped in water and you're being tossed and turned and tossed and turned. But, you know, can I stay with that?


And then at one point I come out of that and there's peace and there's harmony. So I think that's inherent in all of this. And it's a deep, deep lesson for us to stay with us and stay with one another and to embrace it really. And it's hard. It's very hard. But, you know, is this something to be thankful for? Because, you know, we think about our vow. Beings are numberless. I vow to save them. And that's inclusive. That's everyone. That's everything. Yeah, so I think we We may, before we can go to work, we maybe need to open to all the disappointment, which is going to come in waves. The sadness and grief, which is going to come in waves. We have to open to that before we can open to some people. We have to, yeah, we have to be gentle and patient


with disappointment and depression and fear, all that we have to work with in ourselves before we can go to work on dialoguing with people who are part of the disappointment and the frustration. I often feel that the universe is kind of a benevolent place, but I think Speak louder, Karen. I'm trying. I think that this event just makes me question that. Let me look into it a little more deeply. Well, there is a teaching that there is a Buddha in this world, that there is Buddha in this world, that there is inconceivable benevolence in this world, but that teaching also goes with that there is evil inherent to Buddha nature.


That's part of the deal. Say more? Yeah, please. Learn to, when you're ready, when you've embraced and opened to your disappointment, which you want to do, right? And your grief, and your fear of, for example, evil, your disappointment that there is evil, and your grief of losing the world where you thought there wasn't going to be any, or not much, when you do that work, then you may be ready to have dialogue with evil. And it isn't that you're going to end the evil, It's that the dialogue is going to realize peace.


That you're not going to hold on to your non-evil, and you're going to show evil how not to hold on to evil. And you're going to do that not just by touching evil with a wand so evil doesn't get stuck in evil, and touching yourself with a wand so you don't get stuck in good, It's the dialogue that's going to release. And when there's no abiding, that's the bodhisattva. This place is named after the bodhisattva not abiding in her stories of good and evil. But part of the bodhisattva work is to, and you want to do it, you're ready for it, is to open to the disappointment and the sadness of the loss of good, the loss of protection, the loss of kindness, the loss of inclusivity, the loss of everything that you care about.


If you can open to that through sadness and grief, then you can get ready to engage in the dialogue which will liberate all beings. But it's not by getting rid of evil. evil is part of the Buddha process. But the Buddha process isn't just evil, it's also good, because there's no evil without good. If you tell people that good is inherent to Buddha nature, they say, well, sure. I'm saying, Evil is too, but Buddha nature isn't good or evil. Buddha nature is the way we realize peace through dialogue with the other. Dialogue with the other. And it can be others who agree with us and others who don't agree with us. It's through the dialogue that we're going to realize, you know,


Ananda says to the Buddha, friendship is half of the Buddha, half of the Buddha life. And Buddha says to Ananda, don't say that Ananda, don't say that. Friendship is all of the Buddha. The Buddha is just friendship, just love. Just respect, it's just that dialogue, that friendly dialogue with the other. But in order to be ready for the dialogue, we may have to do, we may have to lick, we got wounded. Many of us got wounded. We may have to lick wounds for a while. And as the president named Obama says, when we fall down, we have to get back up. dust ourselves off and start all over again. We have been wounded, we've been hurt. Our friends have been hurt, wounded.


They feel abused and discouraged and on and on. And we have to open all these feelings to some extent before we can do the difficult thing of having a dialogue with the other. And again, the other has two sections. One is the part of the other that seems to agree with us. The other part of the other is the other that doesn't agree with us. In other words, all the different sections of the other. It is now... 1230, I really appreciate you listening. I hope I didn't talk too much. I'm sorry if I did. I encourage you to stop me if I talk too much. What if you stop too soon? I encourage you to tell me that you think I stopped too soon.


Are you about to stop? I was thinking of stopping because it's 1230 and I would like to do a memorial ceremony. for our friend Abhi's mother. Abhi's mother is named Pushpa Maturama Glingam. Is that close enough? So you can see that she was a beautiful girl. That's when she got married? This is Abhi's mother when she was 19. Very beautiful and she's probably beautiful all the way. And so now I'd like to do a memorial ceremony for Abhi's mother, and then we can have lunch, and let's continue this conversation, okay? This is our conversation to encourage us to have a conversation with others that we have not had enough conversation with, right?