We’re having a splendid Sunday morning of sesshin (接心・摂心). Sesshin means touching and embracing the heart-mind. Yajňavalkya, the famous Upanishadic thinker, said, “Veena sounds, once produced, cannot be caught, but by catching the veena player, they can be caught.” The world we perceive and produce cannot be caught, once produced, but by catching the heart-mind, it can be caught. The Buddha said, “Better than conquering thousands upon thousands in the battlefield is conquering oneself. This is the true conqueror.” Such a conqueror cannot be conquered by anyone or anything.
King Ashoka regretted his campaign against Kalinga, which killed 300,000, and changed his heart-mind to follow the Buddha Dharma, building rock edicts, stone pillars, sending envoys to Syria, Macedonia, etc. Prince Regent Shotoku rescinded clans’ feuds and made the Seventeen Article Constitution to found the national character, deeming harmony precious (1st article) and respecting the triple treasures (2nd article), because we are all commoners of divided beings (Pali: putthu-jana: Sanskrit: pṛthū-jana: masses, pṛthag-jana: divided born). These are great examples demonstrating karma to dharma.
The Buddha foresaw the destruction of the world due to karma and taught that the Dharma could forestall it. All living beings are now on the verge of total annihilation due to human hubris and hysteria with nukes, climate change, mass extinction, etc. Hitler incinerated 6 million Jews. Nixon at the Watergate complex said that he could kill 60 million people with nuclear weapons. One man can wipe out 6 billion people or all living beings. The century of nationalism and wars must be conquered by the century of globalism and peace – the truth and ethic of the holy (wholly wholesome) global system and ethic.
Selfish sinful (separated sick) systems and karma (pyramidal civilization, nationalism, mamonism:moneyism, militarism, materialism, meism) must be changed to universal holy (wholly wholesome) systems and Dharma (Indra-net culture, global heart-harmony-health-happiness). A Zen koan says, “Great people, why can’t you lift your legs?” Everyone must conquer oneself and cooperate in the Indra-network. The Buddha said, “Take refuge in one’s own self, not others. Take refuge in the Dharma, not others.” Only practice makes perfect. Only action makes actuality.