Jesus and Buddha in a Steel Caged Death Match

StevenCraigBlogJesus and Buddha in a Steel Caged Death Match

SteveTree

So, this is the first installment of TRUTH: in 100 words or less where I have made good on the promise to let the readers decide on what topic I will write about next. And this is what you have chosen. You sick, twisted fucks. Actually, this was the topic I voted for. I thought it would be funny as hell. Then it got chosen and I must admit that I struggled to think just how to turn the forced mortal combat of two revered religious figures into an insightful and entertaining blog topic.
Because, after all, we have to start with the insight as to why this title seemed so funny in the first place. Duh! Both of these guys are sort of known for their pacifism. We all know Christ’s famous quote from Matthew (ok, yes, I did have to look up the verse), “But whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.” Imagine him then getting tagged in the mouth by Buddha only to fiercely respond with a a sharp half kick to Buddha’s kidney region, being sure his toes get right underneath the rib cage for extra damage potential. The paradox is just too damn funny. Funny because that shit just isn’t going to happen.
In the ancient Buddhist text, The Dhammapada, it is written, “All fear death. Comparing others with oneself, one should neither kill nor cause to kill.” Now one could try to infer that this sage teaching may prohibit killing one’s adversary (and hey- even then it only says you “shouldn’t”), but that anything short of that is fair game. As such, one could imagine the Buddha, inflamed by Christ’s insistence on a theology centered on a dualistic notion of the divine, roundhouses Jesus with a bare knuckle fist blow that leaves Christ’s orbital bone cracked in three separate places. I am sick enough to acknowledge that the irony of this bemuses me, but let’s be real for a minute. As creatures united in a singularity of the divine, Buddha is asking us to recognize that, as Walt Whitman so eloquently put it, “Every atom belonging to me a good belongs to you.” In other words, we are really all connected so punching your enemy is like hitting yourself in the face. Gosh, maybe our parents were telling the truth as they spanked us and said with a straight face, “This is going to hurt me more than it hurts you.” No, on second thought, I still think they were full of shit.
jesus buddha animeIn fact, like Christ, Buddha suggested that we must let go of anger, not merely for the sake of others but actually for ourselves. Holding onto anger, he suggested, was like “taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.” Seek peace for thine own self sake. Just because you can dropkick Jesus in the jaw doesn’t mean you should.
And there I could leave it, but what about the followers of these religions? Representing a significant portion of the world’s population, have these two demographics bonded together to stage love-in’s, make love not war, and finally bring the hippie ethos of these two religious leaders to its ultimate fulfillment? Hell no. In a cruel perversion of religious doctrine, both Christianity and Buddhism (and let’s face it- all religions really) have actually been the impetus for, rather than the detraction from, untold human conflicts resulting in a scourge of needless death and suffering worldwide. And that’s an irony even I cannot laugh at.
I am fairly confident that if Jesus saw the acts of violence committed in his name, he would finally just lose it and start bitchslapping the next jackass that argues for the right for concealed carry in a church. Or argues for war against our brothers and sisters. Or argues that gun ownership is a “God-given right”.
Funny that I, as one who eschews organized religion, often find myself in the place of informing religious followers of what their religions actually say. I guess in the end, I boldly envision the day not when we evolve beyond religion but rather when we adhere to the lofty principles they purport to establish.

4 comments on “Jesus and Buddha in a Steel Caged Death Match

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *