What The Buddha Might Say To Glenn Beck.

Via Ed & Deb Shapiro
on Sep 8, 2010
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There are sushi-eating socialists among us who have formed a secret society that plans to fill the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool with bong water. — Glenn Beck (from PoliticalHumor.com)

All the world loves a clown, someone who can take them out of the habitual noise, worry and concern in their minds. From Bozo the clown to Charlie Chaplin, the Marx Brothers and the 3 Stooges, all have kept us entertained. Now we have a new clown on the block, Glenn Beck. The big difference is that Glenn Beck appears to take himself seriously. He is headlining a political nightmare at the expense of sanity, honesty, and integrity.

If a bull goes straight when the herd is crossing a road, then they will all go straight because he leads the way. The same among people. If the one who is thought to be the highest lives in goodness, the others do so too. The whole realm lives happily if the ruler lives rightly. — The Buddha

The above quote holds true when the leader is virtuous and honest. But in Beck’s case, he is leading his followers into a quagmire and they don’t even know it. He is using the most destructive of qualities—greed, hatred and delusion—to gain power and prestige. This is the behavior of an egomaniac who thrives at others’ expense.

Al Gore’s not going to be rounding up Jews and exterminating them. It is the same tactic, however. The goal is different. The goal is globalization…And you must silence all dissenting voices. That’s what Hitler did. That’s what Al Gore, the U.N., and everybody on the global warming bandwagon [are doing]. – from The Glenn Beck Program, May 1, 2007

When someone believes they are right, if not righteous, but as a result are creating immense suffering for others, then it is a form of madness. Their view becomes clouded, their understanding no longer trustworthy. In a way it is not their fault for they don’t know they are acting out of ignorance. Their unskillful mind is telling them differently; they believe what they are doing is coming from a higher power when it is actually a delusion of the ego.

There is an extraordinarily belief that what we think, say or do will have no effect on us; that we can lie, get angry, be rude, shout, put people down, incite anger, be totally disrespectful, and that afterward we can just walk away scot free, without any impact in our own life.

But it isn’t quite like that.

All that we are is the result of what we have thought. What we think, we become. — The Buddha

We cannot hurt someone or something else unless we are in pain ourselves. When Deb was in a not very good mood (it does happen!) she went to run a bath and found a spider in the bathtub. In that moment she was confronted with a choice: to take the time to get the spider out of the tub or to flush it down the drain. In a good mood you will take the time to get it out; in a bad mood then how easy it is to flush it. (Deb got it out.)

In other words, inner torment will spill over and harm anyone or anything in its way; a single match can burn down an entire forest. This means that if someone causes hurt it is invariably because they themselves are in pain: a person who is wounded is one who enjoys wounding others, a person who hates themselves takes pleasure in hating others.

But when we point a finger at another there are three fingers pointing back at us. When we put that hate into the world it will inevitably find its way back to us and we become the hated.

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. — The Buddha

Some may believe that an angry person is angry and that’s that, it is just human nature. But we can change and let go of hatefulness. We are not an angry person, just a person that is angry. We can move out of a self-centered and self-obsessed way of being, to becoming aware of others and our inter-connectedness.

The heart is like a garden. It can grow compassion or fear. What seeds will you grow there? — The Buddha

Glenn Beck appears to be guided by drama and insecurity, crying to his TV audience and lying through his teeth. He says despicable things in order to create a sensation, like a child needing attention. Perhaps he has never experienced the joy of an open heart, of giving and caring for others, of unconditional love. But he does provide us with the opportunity to practice tolerance and forbearance, to open our own hearts and be more compassionate. Anyway you look at it he is a human being and is equally worthy of being loved as anyone else!

And for our clown’s finale:

I’m not saying Obama is the antichrist, but don’t you find it suspicious that his foot soldiers are trying to create a public panic about global warming so they can euthanize your grandma with a pillow. — Glenn Beck (from PoliticalHumor.com)

Photo thanks to hk_traveller at flickr.com


About Ed & Deb Shapiro

Ed & Deb Shapiro are the authors of new The Unexpected Power of Mindfulness & Meditation. Deb is the author of Your Body Speaks Your Mind, now in 19 languages. They have six meditation CDs. See more at their website.


10 Responses to “What The Buddha Might Say To Glenn Beck.”

  1. Steve S says:

    Thank you. Especially for the reminder to "practice tolerance and forbearance, to open our own hearts and be more compassionate." It is easy to forget.

  2. Ed Shapiro says:

    you are so right – when we want to attack and feel it is appropriate – we should breathe an open our hearts-

  3. Bud Wilson says:

    Nice piece Ed and Deb… I left a longer poem for you on Huffington Post… a while back I saw a piece about sending love to George W. Bush. Or, we're coming for you with love. Something to that effect. The idea is this – Because you are who you are, you show me how not to be…Therefore I bow to you. it was a very clever piece, borrowed from the Dahlia Lama. Cheers, Bud

  4. The picture at the top, is that a picture of the giant buddha in Hong Kong?

  5. Ed Shapiro says:

    thanks Bud – His Holiness the Dalai Lama is a great inspiration – & so are you! – Cheers – Ed :-))

  6. Jasmine says:


    Glenn Beck’s agenda is for the country to convert to Christianity whether you are or not. I’ve watched his show and I can confirm that the most of his statements are wholly opionated without facts backing up any of his claims. “Obama as the anti-christ?” How did he get proof for that one?

    As a Christian I’m still able to see that the words that come spewing out of his mouth are usually hurtful lies that have further divided our nation. I just hope avid Beck followers like yourself will one day realize that.

  7. elephantjournal says:

    Awesome! I was just there (middle of august)!

    My photos for my trip to hong kong are here on Facebook –


  8. Ed Shapiro says:

    lucky you – thanks for the photos – Cheers – Ed

  9. Ребенку 8 месяцев, а я уже не справляюсь с обязанностями матери. Сегодня, пока я отвернулась, малыш себе палец прищимил дверью, вчера истерику устроил (забрала провод), еле привела его в нормальное состояние. Не моргу накормить его обычной едой более, чем две чайных ложки (отказывается), здесь ГВ нужно сворачивать, а малыш буквально ничего не ест, помимо грудного молока. Что то новое ежедневон, и чем далее, тем более ощущаю, что я не справляюсь как мать. Я плохая?
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