Caste: “Kast” – noun: Hereditary classes of societies, distinguished by relative degrees of ritual purity or pollution and of social status.

The world since we can trace has always tried to institute and maintain its caste system (I say delusion) by relying upon national rivalry played out through force (politics, hate) and money or debt (economics, greed). Many think that their countries and heritages are grand and feel overloads of pride and often nationalistic arrogance. Its a fine line to balance ones pride with common sense and more importantly common ground.

As practicing buddhist’s and humans we can not allow this to take a hold in our communities, social circles and lives. Buddhism can help us to rise out of our local cultures, caste and so on, but if we do not point the mind to this task I fear no real enlightenment will occur. An enlightened person is a citizen of the world, not a citizen of Japan or Germany or Britain or any other local power structure. We have, therefore, to start seeing countries simply as organizations and not as part of our identity.

Ideas of historic or economic determinism are myths that seek to excuse what should not be perpetrated, and to lull people into thinking that the things that they knowingly do that are bad, or not the best they can do, are necessary and inevitable. Determinism of either kind is, simply put, a lie. There are better myths and a cleaner conscience is possible. If we cannot find better ways to live, then we will continue to make new nightmares.

Lets us rise above the current caste systems and balance our joy and opportunities with the understanding that we all deserve to be happy and accepted.

Peace and Love, Jim

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