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Buddha and peace

- PROMISHA MISHRA, Kathmandu

Sep 23, 2015-

All of us have heard about the prince born more than 2,500 years ago in Lumbini which lies in present-day Nepal. He was named Siddhartha, and later left his royal life and became a peace messenger to the world. He taught the world the meaning and path of peace, and we can see people following his teachings. Buddha and peace are synonymous. When a discussion about peace starts, it always ends with Buddha’s philosophy. Some years ago, many of us participated in activities to convince the world that the Buddha was born in Nepal. Some of us carried banners, Facebook statuses were written to support it, and Facebook pages were also created where we shared proofs to show that the Buddha was born in Nepal. Our government too supported the effort by printing the statement ‘Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha’ on the Rs100 currency note.

But we are just interested in feeling proud about his birthplace, not about the purpose of his birth. I think the Buddha never taught us to be proud that he was born here. If we are really proud of him, it must be shown through our actions. But who seems to be interested in doing that? He taught that peace must be maintained at any cost; but we, especially the people of Nepal, are ready to fight for any cause. We can fight, that’s our identity these days. Fights and protests are common in every country. But the problem with us is that we don’t only protest, we are ready to be inhuman too. Let’s spend some time to examine the newspaper headlines of the past 15 years. There is not a single week where we won’t find news about some Nepali being killed by another Nepali. How can I expect the world to keep believing that the Buddha was born in Nepal?

There are two ways to prove something. One way is to prove something with your words and logical reasons to support it. The second way is to prove it through your actions. Both are effective in their own way. We can prove something faster with words. When we try to prove something with our actions, it will take time; but it is always long lasting. That’s why it is said that actions speak louder than words. Can we start realising what our actions are speaking? The world won’t ask you whether you participated in a protest or not. They won’t be interested in knowing whether you carried a flag or a gun. But if our custom of violent protests continues, they will start asking tough questions, and we will have to start preparing our answers from today. None of our actions supports our statement that the Buddha was born in Nepal, because there is no peace here. In the near future, the world will have one question for us: Was the Buddha really born in Nepal?

Published: 23-09-2015 08:35

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