Valentine Buddha

By Sunil Kumar

Love, compassion and the renunciate’s way. The marketing gimmickry of Valentine’s Day ended yesterday; and for once I got a flower and a chocolate. But picking on one of my favorite subjects these days; my valentine for this week; Gautama Buddha.

SeatedBuddhaGandhara2ndCentury

SeatedBuddhaGandhara2ndCentury (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mountains; streams and stillness. Universal compassion is a more abstract and all-encompassing concept; compared to the narrow self-love involved in a romantic escapade; the concept embodied by Valentine’s Day. St. Valentine; a spiritual martyr may never have imagined that a few millenia later; billion-dollar companies would leverage his love for his faith to get a few dollars more.

Christopher Reeve’s poetic other-worldly obsessive love in the movie “Somewhere In Time” appealed to my consciousness for the scenic locales on offer. Perfect place for calmness and serenity; something the Buddha would have appreciated. The past week, marked by Kejriwal’s spectacular win; was also marked by a change in time and place; and another tryst with Delhi’s Akshardham.

Delhi Akshardham in Delhi, India

Delhi Akshardham in Delhi, India (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Buddha urged humanity to live a fuller life; an austere middle path; which if rigorously followed would have created a utopia. We have to also admire the high moral idealism practiced across all of India and East Asia more than a thousand years ago; that could embrace such a faith.

In the book of life; there are chapters written incessantly; days are like pages; with ripples of thoughts creating waves that leave some sort of imprint on today; and if you were to believe religion and theology; forever. The only person that matters in this identity; is the self. Remembering Valentine Buddha; my post for the day.

Valentine postcard, circa 1900–1910

Valentine postcard, circa 1900–1910 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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