Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Idols of the World and the Dalai Lama

One of the most beloved people in the world today is the Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of Tibet and the Buddhist religion. He's renowned and celebrated in almost every country for his simple humility, lack of pretension, wisdom and good humor. To all appearances he's a warm, gentle, forgiving, and generous soul.  People pay to hear him speak, and he donates most of his money to charity. He even resigned his position in 2011, saying his office may be abolished soon, or taken over by a woman. No selfish ambition taints the man in any way. He's very courageous, too, and would be in prison or dead if the Chinese government could get their hands on him. He's been persecuted by China since they invaded Tibet and slaughtered their priests and monks - while seizing religious treasures - in 1959.

The world has celebrated other people like this, historically, from Jesus to St. Francis to Mahatma Gandhi and Mother Theresa.

Which is massively ironic, because the world also celebrates and loves people who are the exact reverse, the polar opposites of the Dalai Lama.  Look at the leaders of most countries, particularly the strong ones who make the news. To a man - or woman - they're vain, self-aggrandizing liars; ambitious, petty, vengeful, selfish, and often violent. They may not take a gun or knife in hand to harm those they don't like, but they will instruct their police forces or armies to kill thousands and destroy their property, worth billions.  Often these leaders are deluded and totally incompetent, and they give power to other incompetents near them so they won't look bad. Granted, their people probably don't love them in the same way people love the saints of the world, but these malevolent rulers can count on the masses to fight and die for them anytime they command it. The people's 'love' has been purchased by material goods and outright fear.

The world is schizophrenic - literally of "divided mind" - in this. We could say that we have a suicidal mindset, globally. How much longer can it go on? Nuclear weapons are proliferating all over the place, and nobody is in a position to stop it or slow it down. Many nuclear nations openly advertise a desire to destroy their perceived enemies. Iran is eager to annihilate Israel, and North Korea has said the same to South Korea, Japan, and the U.S.

We must hope and pray for God's intervention, for there's no way out of this dilemma using human institutions. We're far too mentally ill at this point.