Q337. To what extent are we the choices we make and actions we take, particularly with regard to how these affect other people and the world around us?

A. What we are is the result of the choices we make and actions we take regardless of whether we are conscious of the fact or not. This is called ‘the law of cause and effect’ or ‘causation’. We can’t avoid affecting other people and the world around us, and nor can we be avoid being affected by them. We should try to have a good effect on others and to do that, we should make good choices and take good actions.

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In order to make good choices and take good actions, we should know how to accept the effect from others and the world around us. This is not only because we are more influenced by how we accept what they do to us than what they actually do us, but also because how we accept the effect from them determines our choices and actions.

 

So that we may accept the effect from outside well, we should be able to see it as it is without being deluded by the illusions of it. The purpose of Zen meditation is to teach people how to see things as they really are.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

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