Buddhist morality judges a person on their intentions
not the outcome. If a person goes in with the right intention, then
regardless of the outcome they would not be judged to have done
anything wrong. However it should also be noted that Buddhism
recognises ignorance as one of the ways in which we seriously harm
others. Ignorance comes from lack of awareness, so it would be wrong to
imagine that one could simply carry on acting in an unaware way,
harming people and all is alright. One would obviously create difficult
Karma for acting in an ignorant way and harming others.
Buddhism, we are not dealing with a religion that believes in harming
anyone. We are in no way dealing with a religion which is interested in
retaliation. We are rather dealing with one which is interested in
healing all people. To act with ignorance in an unaware way will
without question cause unhappiness. To end this, within Buddhism, one
would understand the
4 Noble truths and act upon them and also work on the 8 Fold Path which follows on from the
4th Noble Truth .
In the West, in good therapy we do something similar and good
therapists do not believe their clients are intrinsically 'bad'. They
trust in the innate goodness of their clients and help them to work
through the difficulties they have experienced which have allowed them
to build up false views. In this way, both Buddhism and good
therapy work to achieve much the same thing in different ways.
Obviously this would only be the case in therapy's which recognised a
person's inner feeling self and inner resources and respected their
right to autonomy.
Much of our
ignorance comes about because we have suffered hurts which have caused
us to cut off from our inner feeling selves and live largely in our
heads. Our thoughts when they are not coming from heart should not be
confused with what Buddhism means when it uses the word "Mind". Many
Buddhist groups speak of "mind" when they appear to be speaking of what
I call heart. It would be wrong to believe that they are here speaking
simply of thoughts. Thoughts are things which we have learnt through
our experience and through our culture. Thoughts are the constant
chatter that goes on in our mind, that some of us take up meditation to
quiet. Indeed most of us appear at some time to have been so
traumatised that we have seriously lost contact with that inner
connection, our heart. Mind, when Buddhist's talk about it appears to
be something different to what we mean. Rather, I would suggest like
the Indians Carl Jung spoke to, the idea is to think from the heart.
a humanistic religion
could be said to be the first humanistic religion or psychology. The
Buddha said, there is no God outside you. Look within, it is all there.
As a religion it does significantly better than most at protecting
itself from becoming a dogma or cult. The Buddist way is that the
individual is more important than the group. Groups that put the group
above the individual tend to degrade into dogma and cults, as the
originator of the group's ideas and experiences are considered more
important than the experiences of any individual. As we as humans, all
have a unique history and life, that way of workings tends to diminish
possibilities of growth. Putting the individual before the group,
allows for individual experience to be recognised and has the added
proviso that the group is able to correct itself when necessary.
Buddhist way is to put no truth above the deepest truth within
yourself. This is so important if you are working on yourself because
in order to grow, it is necessary to be open and if you want to avoid
being sucked in by the many charlatans who wish to use you for their
own agenda's always remember, put nothing above the deepest truth you
know within yourself.