The Third Wish: To Lead the World Out of Materialism
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Dear Buddhist and Dhammic friends who are interested in Dhamma, in the third delivery of my discourse, I will begin with the Third Wish as the topic of my talk. The wish is to lead the world out of materialism. It sounds uninteresting, but in fact it is a matter that deserves the greatest interest. It is materialism that has become our enemy, and it is even more harmful than anything else one could possibly conceive of, especially in this present age when materialism practically reigns over the world. The charm of materialism has a pull on the heart and mind of every human being on earth, and it forces us to struggle to get more of it until we become deluded, which is the reason behind the arising of selfishness as well as the factor that encourages the thriving of selfishness. The world is thus full of selfishness because human beings are contented with the ‘taste’ of material goods and have become more infatuated with it than any other tastes.
❖ Learn and Understand the Word ‘Materialism’ ❖
Some of you may not exactly understand the word ‘materialism.’ Do allow me to elaborate a bit about this matter. I will make a comparison for the sake of easy understanding. It is just like a little mouse telling its mother that it had seen an animal that was most ugly, disgusting and fierce-looking. The little mouse dared not look at it for long. Then this little mouse saw another animal which it thought to be most lovely and worthy of its friendship. The most ugly and fearsome animal which the little mouse talked about was a hen, or a cock rather, with a cockscomb, while the most lovely animal that the little mouse was well impressed with was a cat! So, this little mouse had such a unique concept of ugliness and beauty. Its disgust for the cock and infatuation with the cat should be reversed. But the poor little mouse somehow felt that the giant (meaning the cat) was lovely and mistook the harmless cock as a dangerous giant.