How to Blog Like a Buddhist
Several weeks ago I posted How to Blog Like a Buddhist on Blog-Tutorials. Since I believe it’s valuable information, I’d love to continue the dialogue with a larger audience.
This blog entry is not looking to convert anyone to anything. Rather, we are going to briefly explore several fundamental Buddhist principles that can help take your blog to the next level. Or, at the very least, earn you some good karma.
The Five Precepts are the basic ethical requirements of Buddhism. Here’s how you can apply them to blogging.
1) Do not take life.
This one is pretty easy. Simply put, do not kill anyone today. Preserve human (and animal/plant) life and you’re 20% of the way home.
2) Do not steal.
Do not take words, images or ideas from others. You are a unique individual. Stop spending so much time trolling other blogs and write from your heart. Never take what is not freely given.
3) Do not engage in sexual misconduct.
This blog entry is operating on the premise that your blog content does not revolve around sex, gossip, drugs or any other topic that even the lay Buddhist would find unacceptable. Society is already drenched in enough sex, try your best to keep your blog free of innuendo and foul language.
4) Do not speak mistruths.
Your blog, regardless of topic, must be 100% honest. The biggest problem with lying is that you cloud other people’s perceptions, in turn, clouding up the foundation of Buddhism – mindfulness. Included in this precept is avoiding slandering others or gossiping.
5) No drugs or alcohol.
The goal is to free our minds from unnecessary confusion. You might thing a drink or two gets the ideas flowing, but in reality, your best work will be written when you are of a clear mind.
These five precepts all sound like instructions, “don’t do this” and “don’t do that.” But don’t look at them negatively. View them in a positive way and try to incorporate them into your life – starting with your blog.
The beauty of Buddhism is that you can rely on these precepts regardless of your religions’ beliefs.
Andrew G.R. is the owner of Jobacle, a career advice and employment news blog and podcast designed to make work better. Follow him on Twitter.
I’m wondering about #4…
Even steps as simple as creating a blog, naming it, and thinking of things to put on it already puts a slant on what is true. Everyone has an agenda. We can only do what we feel is best to remain true…
Those who talk don’t know. Those who know don’t talk.
-from the Tao Te Ching
There is a easier 2 step guidance as taught by Buddha himself to his son.
1. Do not do anything to harm yourself and
2. Do not do anything that will harm others.
All the precepts and sutta actually revolves or expanded from these 2 simple steps.
What about humility? There are many bloggers in need of that area;
Wise men don’t judge: they seek to understand. – Fingers Pointing Toward the Moon by Wei Wu Wei
As a Buddhist monk and blogger, although not a reader of this blog…sorry :), I’m very happy to see the ethics of blogging being discussed.
Buddhist ethics however are based on the natural law of cause and effect. I’m sure Andrew is aware of this fact but, perhaps others are not.
The law of cause and effect or karma is a natural law, not something that the Buddha made up. It is simply this. For every action there is an effect. The effect is of a similar type to the cause. Given this fact this means that the mental factor of intent plays a very important role in determining whether an action is positive or negative. For that reason Buddhist vows/rules are not hard and fast rules that must be obeyed or something bad will happen.
For instance it is possible to speak a non-truth that will not create a negative result. The classic example goes along the lines of…say someone came to your house and asked where your family are. Seeing that this person has a gun and knowing that he will probably kill your family, telling him that they are in the lounge room is just silly! A smart course of action would be to tell him they are somewhere else and then go and call the police. Is this a lie? Technically no, as it is not negative action but, it is a non-truth.
just my 2 cents
Loden: Great words on the law of cause and effect. Thanks for stopping by!
I couldn’t help but chuckle a bit at #1: “Simply put, do not kill anyone today”
Blog is so useful regardless of what you will post!!!!