Having enjoyed a nice cuppa tea this morning made from loose tea leaves I began to wonder about the use of teabags. It appears to me they are an unnecessary convenience which if we stopped using would make a huge impact on the world’s resources. Surely this has to be the way forward for a better future, namely, winkling out from our lives the unnecessary from the necessary.
The modern capitolist society offers much in the way of innovation and solution that it leads us to believe our lives will be easier (therefore happier) if only we have the latest gadget or device. It could be a phone, a pill or a diet - whatever it is it’s sold to us as the solution to our problems. The implication from providing us with all these solutions is that we have a lot of problems, therefore the more solutions we have the happier we shall be. But anyone with any sense can see this is not the case. However if we are not careful we will spend our entire lives chasing after the next new thing in an attempt to satisfy our desire for happiness. The negative consequence of the consumer society is the effect it has on the environment and I would suggest, our mental health.
There is of course a whole history of industrial and scientific development that has brought us to where we are now. When we speak of development in this way we mean finding solutions to problems. Some of these solutions are very necessary others are not. It depends on how real the problem is in the first place and how urgently it needs to be addressed. Teabags were invented for the sake of convenience, viewed as an innovation that addresses the time and effort it takes to make a brew. But can it really be seen as innovation when the problem hardly existed in the first place or when the knock on affect is greater than the problem initially addressed?
We may need to go backward in order to go forward
You may have heard it said that laws and guidlines which stifle innovation should be resisted. But it could be the case that through some of our innovations we cause more problems than we overcome. Should we not seriously consider the implications of our actions on ourselves, others, the environment, the rest of nature and the whole cosmos. The point I’m trying to make is that while our focus is directed solely toward the economy other areas of life will be neglected. We cannot separate the economy from science or the environment or for that matter religion and human psychology. Changes have to be made from the way we think and do things at the present time and it would appear that business and the economy has to play second fiddle to the environment and nature. But while in the process of making these changes we must not disregard the really important achievments and advances made throughout history to the present time. We do however need to sort out the wheat from the chaff.
Don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater
Is it not the job of politicians to recognise and instigate the changes required to safeguard the future of the planet and it’s people? Can we as ordinary citizens trust the political authorities to make the right choices? Do politicians even have the power required to make the necessary changes or are they to some degree in the pockets of the corporations? What can I do as an individual to make a difference, can I do anything of any real value? If there is no hope in the ruling authorities of this world to to bring about change that will benefit all then where can we place our hope?
Drinking less tea and coffee, using loose tea instead of tea bags and eating less meat that only comes from animals treated with the highest welfare standards are all things we can do right now to start improving our health and that of our planet. Spiritual Enlightenment could result from making a simple choice of drinking tea made from loose tealeaves instead of teabags. Ultimately, the changes we make to our lives for ourselves, others and the planet should all be aimed at the one goal of creating heaven on earth. Heaven on earth is the next stage of evolution, in it man is joined God, man is divine, he has transcended his animal nature and brought it to fulfilment. It is the law of nature that man should be one with God.
Jesus said, ‘I did not come to destroy the law but to fulfil it’
The Tao will always be beyond comprehension. Although it seems trivial, no one in all the world can control it.
If governments and leaders can abide in it all beings shall gratefully behave likewise. We would have a heaven on earth and sweet rains would fall. The people would not need to be told, they would just naturally do what is right. When you organize, you must of necessity use names and order. But given that, you must also know where to leave off naming and structuring.
Knowing when to stop, you can avoid danger. All the world is to the Tao as rivers flowing home to the sea.