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Sunday, February 14, 2021

Inquire towards culture

Culture is a name and form represents human beings particular way of thinking, conduct and living under a particular belief, values and practice. Everyone has their own particular personal culture along with a family or community culture that one attaching onto and identifying with. Even if someone intentionally not following or practicing any particular family or community culture in the world, one is still thinking, behaving, doing things and living life in one's own way of one's particular personal culture.

Just like all kinds of impermanent names and forms, culture is just what it is. It serves a purpose for most people in this world of impermanence to live life and do things in certain way, dealing with desirable and undesirable events and experiences. It's neither good nor bad, neither right nor wrong. Although some people might be disturbed or offended by some other people's particular culture, or be offended by how other people perceive and react towards one's particular culture that is not perceiving and reacting in the way that one would like it to be.

For many people, life appears to be more meaningful and less depressing if they live life according to their specific culture.

Most cultures involve certain celebrations/ceremonies and have certain ritual practices. There is particular type of food consumption for everyday life and particularly in certain ceremonies, following a particular way of gathering, storing, preparing, cooking, serving and eating food. It can turn into a form of OCD if people overly attached onto a particular way of doing things and living (a form of ritual relates to appropriateness/disappropriateness and auspiciousness/inauspiciousness), where people would feel disturbed or unrest if for some reasons they are unable to follow or accomplish every details of their particular cultural practice. There are many do(s) and don't(s) in everyday life, particularly during particular celebration, ceremony, or funeral.

Some people don't need to celebrate any kinds of celebrations and don't need to have any ritual practice, or don't need to have specific type of funeral arrangement after death. That itself is a form of culture of their own.

Intentional simplicity or minimalism, is also a form of culture. Spontaneously allowing everything to be what they are, without intention to be simple or not simple, without any superstitious belief and ritual practice is also a form of culture of its own.

Some cultures might create more inconvenience and restriction in life for oneself and/or others, while some cultures provide more easiness and freedom in life for everyone.

Some people are proud of their inherited culture, while some people want to runaway from their inherited culture. Some cultures advocate discrimination and violent abusive treatment towards certain gender, sexual orientation, skin tone, body shape, facial features, behavior, way of life, way of doing things, body or mental limitation/disability, or even bodily functions such as women's menstruation, and etc.

The many different types of culture in the world were being gradually developed under the influence of certain areas, climates, ethnicities, beliefs, values and practices, that influence people's way of thinking, conduct and living, is something common and a necessity for the majority of the worldly society. While some people live life as it is, do what is possible and let go what is impossible in the present moment that is subject to impermanent changes of the condition and situation in life, without has to be following any particular culture/ritual of particular thinking, belief, values and practice.

For many people, their particular family and community culture that set as a guideline for them and their future generations to think, do things, behave and live life in certain way is something very important for them, where they want to maintain and strengthen the connection and support among one another within the family or community via empowering their particular culture. Keeping their specific culture alive and strong for as long as possible, is part of the human's nature of survival instinct, as well as 'the urge to control everything to be in certain way according to my desire'.

Cultures are subject to impermanent changes and extinction, and are constantly evolving influenced by the present changes in the world, particularly due to the exposure of education and science that debunks many types of superstitious beliefs and practices, but also due to the existence of political authoritarianism in certain countries that advocates protection towards self-interest and control via discrimination, interference and oppression.

While certain cultures would still retain certain values and practices from the very beginning of its forming, even though certain values and practices might be irrelevant or ridiculous under the knowledge of science, but somehow, the minds might find certain comfort in those values and practices.

The survival of any existing culture needs the support and engagement of a group of people as many as possible. Without people supporting, practicing or propagating a particular belief, values and practice, that particular culture will disappear or doesn't exist.

Someone might live life in one's own way that might be distinctive from all the others, then that specific way of living will be gone upon the end of this person's life. Or, maybe some others who happen to know this person's specific way of living, and they would like to learn and adopt this person's specific way of living, then this particular culture of a specific way of living might go on, or even expanding, and could be evolving into some other forms of culture.

Certain cultures are eventually disappearing from the world when less and less people following, practicing and propagating a particular culture. Certain cultures are being manipulated into something different from its origin. Meanwhile, mix cultures or new cultures will constantly cropping up in the world. Some last longer, while some last for a short while. Some cultures were gone for some time, but are being revived by certain people.

Certain people welcoming certain new cultures or mix cultures, while certain people don't like the idea of mix cultures or new cultures that they think is a form of threat or contamination towards their particular culture, where they have fear towards the extinction of their own particular culture as well as fear towards the threat or contamination from other existing cultures or any new cultures that they feel are intimidating the existence and authenticity of their particular cultural belief, values and practice.

Something that needs to be maintained, that is impermanent, that will change, is considered 'unreal' under the teachings of Yoga and Buddhism.

In certain society, without following any particular cultural belief, values and practice that they know, is unthinkable or unlivable for them.

Most people want their own particular culture to be preserved and be respected by all the others. People would feel very disturbed or offended if their culture is under what they think is a threat, or what they think is being disrespected or insulted by some others, either intentionally or unintentionally.

As yoga practitioners, we respect everyone's different cultures without interference. Understanding that everyone has their own freedom to follow or adopt any kinds of culture that they want to follow and practice, that guides them to live life or do things in a particular way that make them feel most comfortable.

Yoga practitioners also can follow and practice a particular culture that they inherited, or adopted, or invented, but without attachment and identification with that particular culture.

Any forms of culture is just a way of living and doing things in life, it's not who or what 'I' am.

Only through non-attachment and non-identification towards any particular culture, belief, values and practice, the mind can be open to inquire the truth of everything, including one's particular culture. Being free from egoistic pride and protectiveness, the mind is undisturbed by all the impermanent changes in the world, as well as how others perceive or react towards one's particular culture of particular way of living and doing things.

Just like having its influence in everything else in this world, commercialism has its strong influence in all kinds of different cultures, promoting or even inventing all kinds of cultural celebrations, festivals and ceremonies that highly supporting the world of commercialism, creating 'jobs' and 'business' for different people, or under the name of supporting and empowering 'The Economy'.

Living under certain cultures and in certain countries can be so stressful. It's like someone needs to be skillfully walking on eggs all the time, where one has to be very careful not to do or say many things that are being perceived as offensive towards certain culture, or it's an offense towards the law and orders of the country.

Inquire towards the truth of everything.

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About Yoga

Know thyself. Everything is impermanent and selfless. There is no 'I'. There is no 'I am selfless'/'I am not selfless'. There is no 'I am hurt'/'I need to be healed from hurt'. Non-blind believing, non-blind following, non-blind practicing and non-blind propagating, but be open-minded to inquire the truth of everything. Be free. Be peaceful. Be happy.

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Inquire the truth of everything.

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