Thought to Character – K. Sri Dhammananda

“The thought manifests as the word, The word manifests as the deed, The deed develops into habit, And the habit hardens into character. So watch the thought and its way with care, And let it spring from love Born out of concern for all beings.” – K. Sri Dhammananda

The Complexity of Simplicity

 I had a thought yesterday, there’s a complexity to simplicity. The thought first popped into my head because I was thinking about a picture I recently made. There’s an elegant simplicity to it, but there are a bunch of layers and parts to it that only I will see. I see the complexity, the minor details that only a few people will ever even notice and how it came together, but most people that see the picture will see something very simple. Then I realized that the thought is true for everything that is created and invented. I don’t know how a car works, but to the people building them and inventing and designing them they’re highly complex. For me though, it’s a matter of sitting down and turning a key. Similarly, everyone loves the minimalist, sleek design of OSX, but you know the designers that made the OS see all the little gradients and options, the complexity in the simplicity.  

Joining a Cult

 I’ve always felt like joining a cult would be fun, but the problem I run into is that I don’t think you can really join a cult if you know it’s one going in. Like, I’m fascinated by the idea of structure and the feeling of warmth and love that, presumably, a cult would offer. I also wouldn’t mind being made to feel special again, like I had some secret knowledge no one else did. The weird layers of secrecy and hierarchies of power would all be pleasant enough, though ultimately I feel like I can’t be happy anywhere, so I only think it would last a little while. Then we get to the extreme stuff, the killing, the running away to live on an island, or in the jungle, or somewhere. I can get on board with all of that. I feel like it would be interesting to experience the charisma of someone that could convince you to kill someone for them. That’s awe-inspiring power for another human to have on interpersonal level. Stunning, really. Like I said, though, I don’t think you can join a cult if you know it’s one going in. You can have a pretty negative attitude going in and be convinced, but I feel like thinking the leader possesses some degree of mind control makes you pretty damn defensive going in. My other problem is that I don’t go to meetings, or really any sort of group activity. My loneliness has a higher degree of self-infliction than I like admit, but I just don’t go out enough to meet someone in cult. Nor do I seem like the kind of person that would be worth inviting. I don’t have any really visible signs of how depressed I am or how much of an outsider I am, I let my mind and my thoughts do that for me. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to join a cult. I guess my suggesting it’s a cult isn’t going to endear me to the group either. I don’t do well with groups generally.