Wednesday, July 28, 2010
The Buddha and the Baker
Look! Actual wool being handled. It's a beautiful thing.
While I was happily spinning - merrily spinning, I would go so far to say - the doorbell rang. I could see from where I was sitting that there were two young women at the door. Uh-oh, religious people, I thought. But no, they were young and rather hip looking, which I took to mean that they were not religious zealots.
They just wanted to leave some literature that talked about God and creation. They really emphasized that last word. As I usually do, I told them that my religious practice was Buddhist so I thought their literature would be more useful for someone else. Normally, that is enough to send religious doorbell ringers away. But not these young women.
"Oh!" they said, "we know about the Buddha because there are a lot of Tibetan people in this neighborhood." A fact that is true enough.
"Is that so?" I replied.
"Oh yes. We know that Buddha was searching for answers about the meaning of life and why we suffer and die." Ok, now I am impressed that they know that much. With sadness in her voice, one of the women said,"But he never found the answer." And launched into her Bible talk.
Hold on a minute! He never found his answer? Yes he did! I stopped her there. A bit flustered, she continued, read me a bit about sin from the Bible and asked me if I was to bake bread in a pan with a dent in it, what would happen to every loaf or cake that came out of that pan?
First off, who bakes cakes in bread pans? And second off, huh?
At that point, I told them that the gulf between us was probably too large to be breached by literature and bread pans and it was time to end the conversation. I have no problem talking about religion but, please, if you must use baking metaphors, at least make them accurate.