What would Buddha do about unflattering cartoons? Practice non-attachment? Hope that the cartoonist is sent to a special, Buddhahood-less hell? Or recognize that, with the news of a Buddhist-issued death threat, “Buddhism, like Islam,” can easily become “another weapon in the struggle against ‘others’; it becomes a site of expression for rage as well as forgiveness, hatred as well as hope, righteous ‘self-defense’ as well as peace. It both forms cherished self-identities and proclaims the absence of self; it creates nations and breaks individuals of their obsessions with external references.” A thoughtful consideration of the cartoon debate and religious “otherness” from the always-sharp TricycleBlog.
20 February 2006