New is not always better than the tried and true…..I’m going to prolly do a painting of this… The story of the never-ending Dharma arguments.
I belong to a BB Buddhist Chat board. I’ve been part of a group of people who have chatted together since early 2000. I love reading about different traditions and chatting with old and new students. The meeting of scholars, monastics and newbies of different traditions and cultures is amazing to watch and be part of an ongoing dialogue. But there is one thing about the boards I find tedious and I know others love this type of study or they wouldn’t take part in this particular drama. However, these dusty old men with bugs in their ears have argued for thousands of lifetimes. They have forgotten why they argue and argue for arguments sake.
When I read threads like this I see a gas-lit room, you can hear the whisper of gas feeding the flickering flames ensconced within frosted glass shells on dark cherry-wood paneled walls. The light from the flames dancing with the shadows…
I see a group of bewhiskered old men, hair on the top of their head has moved into their ears along with birds nests, creepin crawly black beetles and bugs. Bushy eye-brows and nose hair dancing in time with their bobbing heads as they mutter to themselves and each other about who is right and who is wrong and the sing-song of endless citations. Cobwebs are hanging off their elbows and ears, dressed in baggy old pants and sweaters with elbow patches, facing each other across and dusty book crowded table. The background of dimly lit old floor to ceiling wooden walled book shelves full of old books that sparkle at times with the golden glint of lettering in odd languages. As the light is too busy dancing with the darkness the floor, ceiling, and corners are lost in shadows…I can hear a constant nonstop dry-husked, threadbare whispering of old arguments that will never end.
People are gonna believe what they want to believe no amount of arguing is gonna change that, I know this firsthand. The old traditions need protection, they are going extinct because now-in-days people think if it’s new its better.