PureInsight | March 30, 2009
[PureInsight.org] A few days ago, I read an article in the New York Times* discussing scientific experiments that have proved one can treat cold symptoms with warm water. The article cited research conducted by British scientists who compared the effects of drinking warm beverages with drinking room-temperature beverages on the alleviation of cold symptoms. They discovered that warm water immediately relieved symptoms such as a runny nose, cough, and sore throat, whereas the latter barely had any effect.
I found it rather funny—something I have known since childhood has to be proven by scientists in order for it to be accepted as fact. In a similar vein, Chinese people know that one can easily get diarrhea after catching a chill and therefore they believe that it’s important to keep warm. However, when I came to America, I found that people here do not think diarrhea has anything to do with catching a chill. Instead they believe it is caused by bacteria and so they do not pay much attention to keeping warm.
The cultural differences between the East and West are very obvious in this case. This tells us that the way an issue is handled will be totally different between people who have different views. In traditional Chinese culture, the principles of Yin and Yang and the Five Elements have pervaded people’s way of thinking and have had a profound effect on how people understand themselves and their environment. However, Western medicine pays attention to changes on the surface. This is especially true nowadays, when symptoms tend to be explained at the molecular level, thus resulting in a very complex system.
For example, a person runs into difficulties throughout his life. If he treats the problem superficially, he will focus on what he perceives to be the problem and on the problem’s surface manifestations, applying theories and solving it accordingly. The solutions often involve retaliation for what he believes to be unfair treatment.
Societies run into all kinds of crises too, financially, culturally, and morally. Apart from administrative methods, problems are usually solved through the employment of police or the military.
These solutions will probably slow down the crisis or solve the problem temporarily. However, if one fails to understand fundamentally what caused it, the problem will reoccur, or change into another form and then come back.
Social problems take many forms and manifest as very complex crises. However, if we look at them from a different point of view, we can see that their fundamental cause is a loss of conscience and a decline in morality. If one realizes this, then it will not be difficult to find a solution. It is just like a tree: only when the root is deep and the stem is strong can a tree withstand strong winds. If people only focus on strengthening the branches and treetop, then the tree will probably fall down when a storm strikes.
I used to look for answers in the maze too. Now that I have learned to treasure Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance, I have found the answers to all my questions.
In the boundless universe, sentient beings are all given opportunities to position themselves so that they may have a bright future.
February 3, 2009
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2009/2/3/57577.html