Everything is connected to everything else. So what do we do? Trying to say something about money and related to that, about power, I struggled a while to what message may be most pertinent to convey. After a while, I came up with the short list which also points to how to live our life. They are:
- Be aware of Impermanence.. nothing lasts forever
- Have small desire and learn to be satisfied (as mentioned in the last post)
- Find things you really like to do, and if that help the society, that will give a good reason that you will be happy in what you do in life (connection to ten-mei: or order form heaven)
- Use money/brain but not to be used by it. Also know that, asking what is important is more important than just doing the task. So, re-visit this every now and then. Never lose the longing for the endless sea
Each item in this list may require more explanation but, instead of doing that, I would like to share the following essay by Daisetz Suzuki, on "Love and Power." Why? Because this essay points the essence of our life as I see it, and will give a full explanation of all the items in the list above tied to money, power, life and love.
Back in 1993, I was invited to a YPO (Young Presidents’ Organization) University held in London, where I presented the idea of mini-company, waste elimination and unleashing the human potential in three lectures. This paper of Daisetz T. Suzuki, Love and Power, was attached to my presentation with a hope that presidents gathered from around the world might gain what I believed to be an inspirational message. What is shown below is an abbreviated version of this paper. (Note also that this paper has a direct link with my book, Results from the Heart with foreword from the Dalai Lama - Kegon* or interepenetration is at the foundation)
Never in the history of mankind has there been a more urgent need for spiritual leaders and for the enhancement of spiritual values than there is in our contemporary world. We have achieved many wonderful things.. in the past century toward the advancement of human welfare. But, strangely, we seem to have forgotten that our welfare depends principally upon our spiritual wisdom and discipline. ... Of all the spiritual values we can conceive and wish to be brought out before us today, none is more commandingly needed than love. It is love which creates life. Life cannot sustain itself without love. My firm conviction is that the present filthy, suffocating atmosphere of hatred and fear is generated through the suppression of the spirit of loving-kindness and universal brotherhood, and it goes without saying that this suffocation comes from the non-realization of the truth that the human community is the most complicated and far-reaching net work of mutual dependence.
The moral teaching of individualism with all its significant corollaries is very fine indeed, but we must remember that the individual is nonexistent when he is isolated from other individuals and cut off from the group to which he belongs, whether the group be biological or political or cosmological. Mathematically stated, the number one can never be one, never be itself, unless it is related to other numbers which are infinite. The existence of a single number by itself is unthinkable. “Morally or spiritually, this means that the existence of each individual, whether or not he is conscious of the fact, owes something to an infinitely expanding and all-enwrapping net of loving relationship, which takes up not only every one of us but everything that exists. The world is a great family and we, each one of us, are its members.
I do not know how much geography has to do with the moulding of human thought, but the fact is that it was in the Far East that a system of thought developed in the seventh century which is known as the Kegon* school of philosophy. The Kegon is based on the ideas of interfusion, or interpenetration, or interrelatedness, or mutual unobstructedness. When this philosophy of the interrelatedness of things is rightly understood, love begins to be realized, because love is to recognize others and to rake them into consideration in every way of life. To do to others what you would like them to you is the keystone of love and this is what naturally grows out of the realization of mutual relatedness.
The idea of mutual relationship and consideration excludes the notion of power for power is something brought from outside into a structure of inner relationship. The use of power is always apt to be arbitrary and despotic and alienating.... Love is not a command given us by an outside agent, for this implies a sense of power. Excessive individualism is the hot-bed in which power-feeling is bred and nourished, because it is egocentric in the sense that it asserts itself arrogantly, and often violently, when it moves out of itself and tries to overrule others. Love, on the contrary, grows out of mutuality and interrelationship and is far from egocentric and self-exalting. While power superficially strong and irresistible, is in reality self-exhausting, love, through self-negation is ever creative for it is the root of existence. Love needs no external, all-powerful agent to exercise itself. Love is life and life is love.
Being an infinitely complicated network of interrelationship, life cannot be itself unless supported by love, Wishing to give life a form, love expresses itself in all modes of being....Love is affirmation, a creative affirmation; it is never destructive and annihilating, because unlike power it is all –embracing and all-forgiving. Love enters into its object and becomes one with it, while power, being characteristically dualistic and discriminative, crushes any object standing against it, or otherwise it conquers it and turns it into a slavish dependent. Power makes use of science and everything that belongs to it. As long as science remains analytical and cannot go beyond the study of infinitely varied forms of differentiation and their quantitative measurements it is never creative. What is creative in its spirit of inquiry, which is inspired by love and not by power. Where there is any co-operation between power and the sciences, it always ends in contriving various methods of disaster and destruction.
Love and creativity are two separate aspect of one reality, but creativity is often separated from love. When this illegitimate separation takes place, creativity comes to be associated with power. Power really belongs to a lower order than love and creativity. When power usurps creativity, it becomes a most dangerous agent of all kinds of mischief. The notion of power as aforesaid grows inevitably out of a dualistic interpretation of reality. When dualism neglects to recognize the presence of an integrating principle behind it, its native penchant for destruction exhibits itself rampantly and wantonly....
Power is always arrogant, self-assertive, and exclusive, whereas love is self-humiliating and all-comprehensive. Power represents destruction, even self-destruction, quite contrary to love’s creativeness. Love dies and live again, while power kills and killed. It was Simone Weil, I understand, who defined power as a force which transforms a person into a thing. I would like to define love as a force that transforms a thing into a person. Love may thus appear to be something radically opposed to power, and love and power may be regarded as mutually exclusive, so that where there is power there cannot be any shadow of love, and where love is no power can ever intrude upon it.
This is true to a certain extent, but the real truth is that love is not opposed to power; love belongs to an order higher than power, and it is only power that imagines itself to be opposed to love. In truth, love is all-enveloping and all-forgiving; it is a universal solvent, an infinitely creative and resourceful agent. As power is always dualistic and therefore rigid, self-assertive, destructive, and annihilating, it turns against itself and destroys itself when it has nothing to conquer... What is blind is not love but power, for power utterly fails to see that its existence is dependent upon something else. It refuses to realize that it can be itself only allying itself to something infinitely greater than itself. Not knowing this fact, power plunges itself straight into the pit of self-destruction. The cataract that blinds the eye must be removed in order that power may experience enlightenment. Without this experience everything becomes unreal to the myopically veiled eye of power.
When the eye fails to see reality as it is, that is, in its suchness, a cloud of fear and suspicion spreads over all things that come before it. Not being able to see reality in its suchness, the eye deceives itself; it becomes suspicious of anything that confronts it and desires to destroy it. Mutual suspicion is thus let loose, and when this takes place no amount of explanation will reduce the tension... Those who are power-intoxicated fail to see that power is blinding and keeps them within an ever-narrowing horizon. Power is thus associated with intellection, and makes use of it in every possible way. Love, however, transcends power because, in its penetration into the core of reality, far beyond the finiteness of the intellect, it is infinity itself. Without love one cannot see the infinitely expanding network of relationships which is reality. Or, we may reverse this and say that without the infinite network of reality we can never experience love in its true light. Love trust, is always affirmative and all-embracing. Love is life and therefore creative. Everything it touches is enlivened and energized for new growth. When you love an animal, it grows more intelligent; when you love a plant you see into its every need. Love is never blind; it is the reservoir of infinite light....
To conclude: Let us first realize the fact that we thrive only when we are co-operative by being alive to the truth of interrelationship of all things in existence. Let us then die to the notion of power and conquest and be resurrected to the eternal creativity of love which is all-embracing and all-forgiving. As love flows out of rightly seeing reality as it is, it is also love that makes us feel that we—each of us individually and all of us collectively—are responsible for whatever things, good or evil, go on in our human community, and we must therefore strive to ameliorate or remove whatever conditions are inimical to the universal advancement of human welfare and wisdom.
( by Dr. D. T. Suzuki in the Hall of the International Exhibition at Brussels on 28th May, 1958, at the Conference “In Defense of Spiritual Values in the Contemporary World." The Awakening of Zen, Shambhala, p.66-70)
* Kegon: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avatamsaka_Sutra
Also at my Japanese home page on Ten Stages Sutra, or Jyu-ji-kyo (sorry in Japanese)
Hope you found this an inspirational peace of work as I felt with tears in my eyes years ago. In short, and connecting what we shared so far in this blog, the fundamental principle in LIFE (as I see it) is, Confirm True Love (through intimacy/oneness) while creating new DNA with the idea that there are infinite ways to express who we are. I would like to address this in the next post.