If You Meet Buddha on the Road...
Not many people have the courage to ask their followers not to trust something just because someone of authority has said it, even if it happens to be their own teachings. Siddharth Gautam, known universally as the Buddha, taught around Northern India two and a half millennia ago. His branch of spirituality almost disappeared in its homeland, only to be rediscovered. Since its rebirth it has begun changing the world once more.
There is no known portrait or sculpture showing his likeness, yet his idols and artwork are ubiquitous. His teachings were not formalised until four and a half centuries after he passed on, nevertheless his teachings are universally practised and admired. His guidance to his disciples has perhaps positively influenced more people than any other spiritual school of thought.
The beauty of the man and his discipline is that it imposes no set of unquestionable dogma. Complete adherence is neither required, nor recommended. Everyone is compelled to think for themselves and follow their own path to liberation. It is this open mindedness and all encompassing compassion that allows the Buddha and Buddhism to remain relevant in the scientific age; to still guide lost souls in search of meaning and perhaps salvation.
“For the first time in human history, the Buddha admonished, entreated and appealed to people not to hurt a living being, and it is not necessary to offer prayer, praise or sacrifice to gods.
With all the eloquence at his command the Buddha vehemently proclaimed that gods are also in dire need of salvation themselves.”
— Thomas William Rhys Davids
“The whole earth is the tomb of heroic men and their story is not given only on stone over their clay but abides everywhere without visible symbol woven into the stuff of other mens lives”
“It is a child of my own and bids fair to be one of the most important (colonies) and at the same time one of the least expensive and troublesome which we possess. Our object is not territory but trade: a great commercial emporium”
— Sir Stamford Raffles
“Star Trek speaks to some basic human needs: that there is a tomorrow — it’s not all going to be over with a big flash and a bomb; that the human race is improving; that we have things to be proud of as humans.”
— Gene Roddenberry
“Traveling—it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller”
— Ibn Battuta