Meditation for BeginnersErroneous Core Values are the Fruit of Mental DefilementsWithout birth, there will be no aging and death.Before we proceed to the topic of ‘core values’ in detail, it is necessary to understand ‘erroneous core values’ which make one misunderstand life and the world. Misunderstanding or misperception of life is diverse in details, but the following three issues are most important:1. Erroneous core values on aging: Considered unsentimentally, birth is the starting point of a one-way path that leads to death. Without birth, there will be no aging and death. This is the truth that we bring with us since the very first moment when we were born. Most people do not realize this fact, and they believe their children grow up progressively moving on to better things. They cannot wait for their children to grow up, instead of reflecting that every passing day is a countdown to their dying day. This erroneous understanding of the nature of life makes them spend their time wastefully in the maze of the material world. Many people also ignore their spiritual values and commit unscrupulous acts which are against both the state laws and morality. It is no surprise to find that most people are afraid of death, but there are very few who act upon that fear and prepare themselves for what is to come after death. Most of us remain oblivious until crippled by old age, sickness, and physical deterioration. By that time, it is too late to consider spiritual cultivation. There are even aged people who expend effort to extend their lives in order to enjoy and fulfill their worldly desires further! These erroneous core values illustrate the kind of ‘unknowing’ that results in deluded motivation, speech, and action that stir our society into chaos.Normally, we require only four requisites for our survival, namely: food, clothing, shelter and medicine.2. Erroneous core values on materialism: Normally, we require only four requisites for our survival, namely: food, clothing, shelter and medicine. Without these resources, it would be difficult for us to survive. Therefore, most people in human societies struggle to acquire these resources to support themselves. However, in most human societies, people accumulate material wealth far in access of these four basic requisites. It has become the social norm to accumulate as much material wealth as possible. It is the defilement of ‘greed’ that urges most towards an unsatiated search for material fulfillment despite the fact that their lives can prosper easily on what they already have. If it becomes more extreme erroneous core values concerning material requisites can cause people to break the laws in order to make unlawful gains. Such people are constantly trying to get more for themselves instead of thinking to share what is surplus to their needs. Competition for scarce resources is rampant from the domestic to the international level.Violence in many forms is provoked merely by competition for resources. The first step towards peace can easily be achieved if all nations agree to share their resources. It is known to all that resources in this world are limited, and different resources are available in specific regions of our world. For example, some countries have high fertility in agricultural products while some other countries have abundant natural petroleum. Sharing through the channel of fair trade can balance resources across the globe and promote well-being to all world citizens. This global sharing of resources is currently obstructed and manipulated when more powerful nations try to stockpile resources to push smaller nations out of the market. Through both political and economic means, some countries export resources far in excess of their imports. Others posture themselves by using trade embargos or violence to limit competitors. Wars and terrorism in the modern day are also fruits of erroneous core values concerning materialism, and it will be difficult to remedy unless we discover and resolve the whole issue from its roots. So far, we can conclude that conflicts at all level result from defilement within our minds. Once again, it is greed, anger, and delusion that cause erroneous core values on materialism. This is the root of our global chaos that continues to worsen even at the time of writing.The Lord Buddha explained the essence of wholesome core values as being3. Erroneous values on the purpose of life: Very few people know the true purpose of life. Even amongst geniuses who have invented so much knowhow and technology, none can offer proof why they were born and what will happen after death. In ignorance of the reason why they were born, people set their goals in life on hearsay. One common belief is that enjoyment in life is dependent on wealth or true love. Thus, many people live only to amass wealth or lovers. Erroneous core values on the purpose of life create problems for society when people try to take shortcuts to wealth by way of unscrupulous live livelihoods such as trade in weapons, drugs, gambling, corruption and dishonest business practices.Core Values are the point of leverage for Human Reformation Having learned about the three major areas of erroneous core values, we can start to appreciate how these can ruin human society-especially in these days of information technology. The internet, movies, video games, cartoons, and television programmes can very quickly spead the worst of core values throughout the world in the blink of an eye. A bad example is violence and crime in movies that are imitated by its audiences. The movie industry thinks of only the profit but their products bring change in the behaviors of many people in society, especially our youth who are the most sensitive toward these messages. It is indeed hard to measure the impact of these pictures of violence on the aggression in our society throughout the world.To reform our human societies, of we are able to cultivate wholesome core values in the hearts of all people, the rest of the problems in society will largely resolve themselves.To continue, we have to ask ourselves exactly what the wholesome core values are. At root they are simply a true understanding about life and the world, to discern what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong.’ It is the spiritual judgment within the hearts of all mankind.The explanation of the term seems to be simple and uncomplicated, but in practice we are faced with the diversity of cultures, beliefs, and customs among individuals and societies, we may find this definition difficult to implement.To understand the ten types of core values, we need to use ‘wisdom’, the brightness in our mindsThe Lord Buddha explained the essence of wholesome core values as being the appreciation of the following values which are seen by Buddhists as key to proper interaction with life and the world:1. Sharing is desirable;2. Welfare work is necessary;3. Virtue should be honoured;4. Good & Bad deeds have karmic results;5. The real existence of the ‘world’;6. There is life after death;7. We are endebted to our mother;8. We are endebted to our father;9. pontanepusly arising beings exist;10. Wise enlightened ones exist.Considering the ten ty0pes of positive core values, we find that the Lord Buddha introduces the values starting with the ones easy to understand and moving sequentially to the more complex ones. To understand the ten types of core values, we need to use ‘wisdom’, the brightness in our minds, to contemplate step by step.
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Erroneous Core Values are the Fruit of Mental Defilements
Before we proceed to the topic of ‘core values’ in detail, it is necessary to understand ‘erroneous core values’ which make one misunderstand life and the world.Dhamma Articles > Meditation Articles and Techniques > Meditation for Beginners
[ Apr 5th, 2011 ] - [ : 9 ]
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