How ‘Honest’ Ethnic Buddhists Will Remember Thich Nhat Hanh (1926-2022)

Google ‘Thich Nhat Hanh’ and the First Thing Encountered Will Be an Extensive ‘Price List’!

Many people are surprised to learn that Thich Nhat Hanh’s main teacher was ‘Thich Quang Duc‘ – a Vietnamese Buddhist monk who burned himself in protest to the Western (and ‘Catholic’) imperialist invasion of Vietnam. This is because Thich Nhat Hanh and his Western acolytes were highly successful in distancing his perceived history from this fact. Why did this happen? What drove an Asian Buddhist to side with his Western persecutors? The West has appropriated Asian Buddhism with very little protest from the small number of ethnic Buddhists living in the West. This has nothing to do with condoning this process of what might be termed ‘spiritual theft’ and everything to do with the reality that Buddhism as conceived and practiced in the West is a perverse ‘inversion’ of what it is in Asian and has been throughout history for over 2,500 years or more. Most Westerners, for instance, are so used to reaching for their credit card when they pick up their ‘mala’ that most would be incredulous to learn that the historical Buddha himself, considered it a spiritual offense to demand money (or any form of payment) in exchange for receiving instruction in the ‘Dhamma’ or his understanding of reality. Indeed, whilst thousands of Westerners crammed into meditation halls ‘at a cost’, the only genuine Buddhists in the world were living in poverty-driven enclaves throughout Asia (these being the products of Western imperialism) and suffering from periodic bouts of ‘death’ caused by the tens of thousands of bombs dropped upon Asian countries by the US Airforce. This historical process of the aggressive West blowing the bodies of ethnic Buddhists to smithereens has happened throughout India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, China, Japan, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, etc. Individual Buddhists, their temples and their communities were thoroughly destroyed in the name of Eurocentric dominance and greed – whilst elements of that destroyed culture were imported into the West to be used in the process of capitalist exploitation – a preferred bourgeois mirror-image of the hellish reality generated out of sight and out of mind. The misrepresentation of Buddhism has been a lucrative business fie not only the White community, but also to those Asians who have aligned their minds and bodies with it, such as the 14th Dalai Lama, Li Hongzhi and Thich Nhat Hanh, etc. All these are examples of Asians who have sat at the head of a vast money-making empire that has ‘sold Buddhism’ to Westerners – whilst those same the governments elected by those same Westerners have chosen to blanket-bomb large swathes of Asia for ideological reasons. Surely, such Asian leaders in the West are guilty as Buddhists of breaking every one of the prohibitions and guidelines contained in the Noble Eightfold Path and the spiritual guidance contained in the Four Noble Truths. Not to mention the hundreds of moral restrictions formulated throughout the extensive Vinaya Discipline! This betrayal of Buddhism and the Asian people is exactly how I would like to remember the Traitor to the Vietnamese people – Thich Nhat Hanh – who sat quietly counting his money (a practice termed ‘pacifist’ by his Western admirers and hangers on), whilst the bombs paid for by the tax dollars of this followers were dropped by the governments those followers elected into power! This is the image I have of Thich Nhat Hanh and the image through Thich Nhat Hanh will be remembered by the vast majority of ethnic Buddhists living throughout Asia!   

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