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Showing posts from November, 2014

Veterans Day

With palms together,
Veterans Day.  What can I say?  Millions of American men and women have left the relative safety of home in order to serve in the Armed Forces. Sworn to protect the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic, these citizen soldiers learn the skills necessary to close with, kill or capture the enemy. Its a scary thought on the one hand,  to turn a citizen into a human being that can, if need be, hunt fellow human beings. On the other hand, defense of our nation and way of life is crucial in a world gone mad with zealots, dictators, and insurgents willing to kill themselves in order to kill others.
This said, as a Zen Buddhist priest, I am ambivalent about this whole thing. We vow not to kill, but make exceptions for self defense.  We vow not to slander others, but easily refer to those who would harm us in dehumanizing ways, ways in which it makes it easier to kill. and if any of us believe we would not —-or could not—- kill, let me say this: you are d…