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Human Progress: Reality or Illusion?

Human Progress: Reality or Illusion?

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Showing the importance of the Buddha's teaching to modern man. By Philip M. Eden. Wheel Publication No. 199.
Showing the importance of the Buddha's teaching to modern man. By Philip M. Eden. Wheel Publication No. 199.

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Published by: Buddhist Publication Society on Nov 27, 2010
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Human Progress:Reality or Illusion?
 by
Philip M. Eden
Buddhist Publication SocietyKandy, Sri Lanka
The Wheel Publication No. 199
ISSN 0068—3345First edition: 1974BPS Online Edition © 2006For free distribution. This work may be republished, reformatted, reprinted, and redistributedin any medium. However, any such republication and redistribution is to be made available tothe public on a free and unrestricted basis and translations and other derivative works are to beclearly marked as such.
 
Contents
Introduction...............................................................................................................................................3I. Our Attitude Towards Progress..........................................................................................................4II. Obstacles to Progress.........................................................................................................................122
 
Introduction
Not only do many non-Buddhists consider Buddhism to be an irrelevant, outmoded teachingthat has nothing to offer the modern world, but many people who profess Buddhism regard theteaching as a kind of private retreat where they can hide and ignore the problems that besetmankind in this technological age. Though the Buddha’s therapy goes beyond the treating of symptoms and aims at a radical cure, Buddhism takes cognisance of suffering in all itsmanifestations and offers effective remedies to those who wish to be healed.We are all aware that mankind now possesses the means to destroy itself and all life on thisearth, and that the factors in his character that perpetuate greed, hatred and delusion persistunabated and thus threaten to lead to a final conflict in which all will perish. The Dhammapoints directly at those factors in man that are responsible for the desperate situation in whichhe now finds himself, and puts forward practical steps to help him to master his passions andhis delusions. Far from being an outmoded, esoteric doctrine, it is, in fact, the life raft to whichthe human race must cling if it is not to be swallowed by the turbulent ocean of its own greed,hatred, and delusion.To show the importance of the Dhamma to modern, technological man it is necessary to relateit directly to the problems of today about which he is concerned, and to use language andanalogies with which he is familiar. This is what this article attempts to do, in the hope thatBuddhists may be able to use this material in their discussions with their fellow men and thusmore effectively spread the incomparable teaching that the Buddha gave mankind 2500 yearsago.3

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