Thursday, February 18, 2010

Induced nonviolent satori

The law of karma is actually very scientific. There is always a connection between cause and effect. It’s like the light of a star, isn’t it? The light that we see now was initiated so many light years ago, but there it is.
—Aung San Suu Kyi, The voice of hope (p. 87)

Aung San Suu Kyi is one of our nonviolent sheroes whose inputs have so very much affected the outputs in her country of Burma (Myanmar). I love what she says about karma being like starlight. You may not see it now, it may take some time to get here, but you know it's on the way.

Does this mean we are all called to be perfect every minute? Are we to operate under the karmic law that says we must live by our engaged conscience or fail?

I don't think so. I have known no one personally in my life who has managed this--everyone has moments of weakness, meanness, greed, selfishness and hopelessness. We cannot hold ourselves to such high standards that we give up.

But to understand that, like any system, the inputs will affect the outputs, can help us to know that karmically speaking, we ought to behave with as much assertive civility and courageous compassion that we can muster at all times. Our behaviors toward our children affect how they treat other children, which affects how those children develop, and so forth. Our nonviolent trainings accrete in the hearts and minds and increasingly intuitive skill banks of all of those we train in various nonviolent responses. Making nonviolent competencies more intuitive is nonviolent satori--intuitive enlightenment.

Enough good produces good. It is not ours to expect our snowflake of the good to start the avalanche of nonviolent social change; it is up to us to make those snowflakes of the good as often as we can.

The avalanche is coming. We may not see it now, but we know it's on the way.


Kyi, Aung San Suu, and Alan Clements (1997). The voice of hope. New York: Seven Stories Press.

No comments: