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Richard Barnes
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Web Guru / Geek, Internet Marketer, Social Media Marketer, Writer, Martial Artist, Broadcaster, Modern British Adventurer
Web Guru / Geek, Internet Marketer, Social Media Marketer, Writer, Martial Artist, Broadcaster, Modern British Adventurer

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I've thought a lot of late about what the Buddha said, that ... Life is suffering.

I've tried to reconcile what he actually means and derive a better understanding. I know from other texts that things are often lost in translation and through the passage of time distorted.

I must believe that the Buddha was a decent sort of fella so this suffering concept he left us to ponder surely wouldn't have been a negative. Imagine if your life's work concluded that all you do will result in toil and heartache. Not a message you'd want to leave as your legacy. Not if you're a decent fella.

So I've been thinking about the word suffering and what that actually is meant to mean.

The Buddha put himself through trial after trial on his path for enlightenment. Living off a grain of rice a day, mooching in the wilderness, casting aside his privileged up bringing etc etc. And then under a tree one day it all came together from which he said...

Life is suffering. (Amongst many others ;)

Suffering, I think, is not we have come to understand, of pain, misery and torture, no, not that, rather an explanation, a road map of what must be done to create, succeed and be happy .

To complete a marathon you need to train, to learn a language you need to study, to love truly you must accept it is not a given that it will be reciprocated, not a bargain. These things have to be suffered.

And that's a good thing. Suffering is about endeavour and determination and grist and application and so it goes on and on.

The Buddha's message I believe is that we all the opportunities in life if we're prepared to put in a bit of suffering.

It's up to you how much you want to do but that Buddha blokes message, passed down through the ages makes a whole lot more sense to me this way.

I'm getting old and more ill tempered. I always had trouble suffering fools or bullies at the best of time, but of late I can't contain my anger and distain towards jobsworths, those whom are beguiling, those that are hypocrites and those that show little or no respect to others. Four times in 24 hours have fired both barrels at such people. The general consensus of wise sages that know better, my heroes of history say don't let them bother you, let it wash over, show them love. But if you let them continue it never gets better. To stand up and make your mark or not to bother. The quiet life is difficult for me. :)

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Found in the rafters by one of the lads at work. He has happy to be carried to somewhere safer. How cute is he. 
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18 Rules of Living by the Dalai Lama


1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.

2. When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.

3. Follow the three Rs: 1. Respect for self 2. Respect for others 3. Responsibility for all your actions.

4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.

5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.

6. Don’t let a little dispute injure a great friendship.

7. When you realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.

8. Spend some time alone every day.

9. Open your arms to change, but don’t let go of your values.

10. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

11. Live a good, honourable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll be able to enjoy it a second time.

12. A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life.

13. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don’t bring up the past.

14. Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality.

15. Be gentle with the earth.

16. Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before.

17. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.

18. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
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This was the view from my hotel window in Kathmandu when I was in Nepal. My thoughts today are with the beautiful, friendly people of Nepal as the come to terms with the devastation of an earthquake that has changed this view forever and taken many lives. Such a poor country gave me the richest of experiences when I visited.
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Madonna is a 'big hit' at The Brits. Whoops. 

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I was shocked by this. Yesterday 136 people were killed or seriously injured on our roads and we accept it, no mention of it. Yesterday, 1 Japanese national was murdered by ISIS (no disrespect here) and there is full page reporting in the national press as it's unacceptable.

Is it just me that thinks there is something seriously wrong with this?
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Lucie and Hollie visiting Anthony Pillage 6 days after a tumour was removed from his chest. 
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I was wrong last week when I wrote about 1,400 children being abused in Rotherham. I said it was perpetrated by Pakistani heritage men preying mostly on venerable white girls.
 
In the picture is Ruzwana Bashir. A girl who lived just up the road from Rotherham in Skipton. She was abused when she was young. She felt so ashamed at the time she didn’t tell anyone. She dared not to. She kept herself to herself and studied. She thought it might be her way out. At 18 she was offered a place at Oxford University, put aside the traditional shalwar kameez, left her home, wore jeans and tried to fit in. She succeeded in so many ways, became president of Oxford Union, got an amazing job in the City with Goldman Sachs and a few years later got her MBA.   But she was haunted by her passed.
 
She is one of those abused.
 
But when she told her parents of the abuse later in life, of the identity of the abuser they begged her not to go public, not to bring shame on the family. They were afraid of what their community would think of them. They would be shunned.
 
What ignorance perpetrates this and allows the most innocent to be fodder?
 
Ruzwana said had she been living at home she would have not sought the right redress she was due, justice. She told her story against her families wishes and her abuser was arrested, others came out and told their story because she had been brave and lead the way. Ruzwana is convinced, because of the fear of shame, many, many more Asian girls fall victim of abuse and it is never reported.
 
I was wrong in saying the abuse was perpetrated by Pakistani men heritage preying on vulnerable white girls, it’s Asian girls too. It’s just, it seems they are even more afraid of losing their family and their homes if they report the abuse than they are of the abuser.
 
If you are from one of those in a community that think it is shameful to out an abuser the shame is with you. Your ignorance and fear allows the perpetrators of such acts to run free and abuse children. All children. All races.
 
Isn’t it about time we stood up and said no more. To say no, it is not OK to turn a blind eye, to stop condoning and start condemning.
 
For me there is an extra tragedy behind the Rotherham story that is a blight on our society, that so many children are under the care of society. It’s a tragedy that communities, authorities and families when challenged, don’t have the back bone to do the right thing because other right minded people could look the other way because it’s not in their back yard.
 
I know we can do better. Not belief or faith tells me this, I know and it starts with the one talking to another and for the other to say, hey, you’re not alone, lets do what is good and right.
 
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. - Edmund Burke”
 
Good men and women don’t do nothing, they do something. The right thing.
 
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