Savior of Crickets

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  • Shonin
    Member
    • Apr 2009
    • 885

    Savior of Crickets

    A few months ago I overheard a co-worker making a statement about how if he saw a fly or another insect around he'd squash it without a second thought.

    So I turned to him and looked him dead in the eye and said , " Not while I'm here you won't." Told him now i'd have to keep an eye on him to make sure that didn't happen. Pretty much told him to live life by his values but i'd do what I had to do and considered it offensive. He asked if that meant I'd fight him over it. I said if I asked him not to and he kept trying i'd do my best to prevent him. I wouldn't think to fight him but if he hit me first, yeah i'd fight him. Let him know that I don't see any point in senseless killing just because people have some problem. It was a life and it was sacred and worth losing a job over.

    A few days later he captured an insect of some form in a cup and escorted it outside. He wanted me to be aware that instead of killing it he was gonna save it. So I smiled and thanked him and told him I really appreciated that. The general manager overheard the convo and was asking what we were talking about.

    I gave him the quick version saying " I asked him not to kill insects in my pressence."

    So my boss asked, " Oh you don't like that do ya? "

    I responded with " No, I preferr folks don't do that."

    A few minutes later the same manager calls me back to the back room where we do the prep work in the morning and right in front of my stomps on a cricket that was just sittin there in the middle of the floor and literally doused it with bug killer.

    So I took a deep breath and said " Wow! You're gigantic dickhead and I can't believe you called me back here to show me that you asshole. That was completely unneccesary. On the plus side I don't have to work the rest of my shift because now I can just go home and sue you for being religiously offensive in the workplace. That's far cooler than working." said it all matter of factly like the joke was on him.

    Keep in mind this was with one of the other managers standing right next to him.She promptly turned with the " Uh-oh" face as her eyes got bigger.

    He looked confused and said " What do you mean sue on religious grounds ? " so I told him " Well we've discussed many times that I used to follow the way of Shamanism and am currently studying and learning about the Way of Zen. So take your pick I can explain it in court perfectly clearly."

    So he apologized and said he didn't realize I was so serious about it . Later on he asked why exactly it was such a big deal. So I explained to him that there was no point in taking the life of anything, it would have taken a whole two minutes to scoop him up and get him outside.

    I informed him that my understanding is that the taking of the life generates the greatest amount of bad karma, the saving of a life generates the greatest amount of good karma. I was looking to save lives not kill them. He was free to do whatever but it was a big deal to me and that I preferred if he opted to kill them ( or anyone else that worked there for that matter) I didn't want to know anything about it.

    I told him I wasn't impractical about it. In a restaurant setting there are health regulations to follow and an infestation is different from a few here and there that stay out of the food and can be escorted to the grass. I let him know of a roach infestation in my wife and I's home due to some nasty junkies that lived next to us. We tried every other solution first, finally we had to just bust out the poison. They can carry disease. We had to worry about our pets with roaches in their food. Being bitten while sleeping ( which did happen). And I hated to do it but couldn't find another option. They were driving us crazy ( it wasn't like the old movie Joe's Apartment. But when you see 8-14 in a day at various points, that's a serious issue).

    So we peacefully parted back to work after the short convo.

    Last week, I was sitting outside before my shift started in the morning. Boss didn't know I was even there ( was one of the days I was cheating on cigs) and I see him come outside with a cup and he let a cricket loose outside then turned around and saw me and was like " Oh hey, Fisher. Just for you I saved this one." so I thanked him very much for it.

    Today the same boss cracked a joke about a retarded employee ( distasteful but our sense of humor in the workplace usually is..it wasn't meant in seriousness and the employee wasn't there) I was like OMG Brian. Your Karma man.. Come onnnn. At which point he hung his head a little and got defensive and said "Speaking of Karma I want you to know over the last two days I have saved twelve crickets from my house."

    Keep in mind, my boss is an atheist.

    My response was "Someone feeling a little guilty?" and laughed at him.Then told him it was really cool he thought to do that.

    Just wanted to share.

    Dave _/_
  • Myoshin

    #2
    Re: Savior of Crickets

    Nice story... really cool to see that your boss started to act on his own accord about saving bugs.

    The story kinda reminded me of my own faults when it comes to insects and arachnids. I save most of the ones I find, even... the... spiders *shudders*. But there are times I react when outside or when walking around campus and a bug lands on my arm I still swat at the bug, in the process sometimes killing the little thing. Then I feel guilty and apologize silently. But it kinda reminds me of the Dalai Lama on a video I saw not too long ago. Here is the link if interested.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W083nSzx1Rc[/video]]

    Gassho,
    Kyle

    Comment

    • Shonin
      Member
      • Apr 2009
      • 885

      #3
      Re: Savior of Crickets

      I definitely have moments of an instinctual smacking. Bad habit. But I feel there is a big difference when one is completely concious of it. and like you I feel horrid when I do it. chastise myself. And over time have caught myself mid swat.

      Will take a peek at the video soon. dunno how much time I have today for it. But thanks for the link.

      Dave _/_

      Comment

      • Shohei
        Member
        • Oct 2007
        • 2854

        #4
        Re: Savior of Crickets

        Great story Dave, Thank you for sharing it! I am the resident bug bouncer at work. I save em all but this one unfortunate ear wig (the EEK factor X3 when you find one under your phone receiver dealy when you pick it up...). That said im not sure how i would have handled myself in your shoes, in that situation, but they way you did made me grin - . Instinctual smacking happens. I try to remember to brush or blow off the invader. Doesnt always happen ops:

        Gassho
        Shohei

        Comment

        • Hoko
          Member
          • Aug 2009
          • 444

          #5
          Re: Savior of Crickets

          I feel your pain. My wife gets all bent out of shape when I make a special effort to put the little buggers out doors.

          That being said: we were being invaded by houseflies recently and I went on a killing spree.
          Fact it: It's nearly impossible to capture those bastards and keep them alive.

          I occasionally feel guilty but you also have to remember that it is nearly impossible NOT to live without killing.

          I read somewhere that in Zen we have to look at the precepts from three angles:
          1) Don't kill
          2) It's impossible NOT to kill (you kill a plant to eat it, you kill microbes when you breathe, you kill bacteria when you take anti-biotics, etc.)
          3) There is no birth and no death so who dies and who kills?

          So for me, personally, if I can remove a pest without killing it, I do.
          For example, recently we had some sort of animal in our crawlspace at work. I purchased and set up a raccoon trap.
          The next day, I caught a gigantic feral cat. Took it up to my father in law's ranch where he cares for all the strays and turned it loose.
          That's making a special effort to preserve life. I think people should do that when it's reasonable.

          On the other side, as I mentioned, I went nutzoid and massacred about 40 flies in our garage last week in an orgy of killing.
          Could I have successfully gotten them out of the garage without letting MORE in? Not likely.
          And I wasn't going to live in the "Amityville Horror" house either!
          Finally, my wife specifically asked me to kill the damn things because we were having people over.
          So what do you do?
          Depends on the situation.
          Kill if you must but be ready to bear the karmic fruits of your actions.

          On the extreme other end of the spectrum, my father killed in the Korean War many years ago.
          He shot across the battlefield as did many of his troop mates and that's one thing, but he also killed three men in hand to hand combat.
          Two with a garotte and one with a bayonet to the base of the skull. He says he can still see their faces.
          He's 78 now and active in his Baptist church. He has spoken at length about this to his pastor and by all accounts, he's come to terms with what he did. Will God forgive him? Who can say?
          I would venture to guess yes but maybe that's my ego talking.
          And if there is no heavenly father, then the "hell" of having killed those men has already been experienced by my old man so I'd say he's suffered the fruits of his actions. I just hope he's forgiven himself.
          "There but for the sake of God go I," right?

          Food for thought anyway.
          Gassho,
          -K2
          法 Dharma
          口 Mouth

          Comment

          • will
            Member
            • Jun 2007
            • 2331

            #6
            Re: Savior of Crickets

            What do we tell Nansen?

            :shock:
            [size=85:z6oilzbt]
            To save all sentient beings, though beings are numberless.
            To penetrate reality, though reality is boundless.
            To transform all delusion, though delusions are immeasurable.
            To attain the enlightened way, a way non-attainable.
            [/size:z6oilzbt]

            Comment

            • Shonin
              Member
              • Apr 2009
              • 885

              #7
              Re: Savior of Crickets

              He's an asshole for cutting a cat in half?

              Dave _/_

              Comment

              • will
                Member
                • Jun 2007
                • 2331

                #8
                Re: Savior of Crickets

                Not it.
                [size=85:z6oilzbt]
                To save all sentient beings, though beings are numberless.
                To penetrate reality, though reality is boundless.
                To transform all delusion, though delusions are immeasurable.
                To attain the enlightened way, a way non-attainable.
                [/size:z6oilzbt]

                Comment

                • will
                  Member
                  • Jun 2007
                  • 2331

                  #9
                  Re: Savior of Crickets

                  Is it and not it.

                  _/_
                  [size=85:z6oilzbt]
                  To save all sentient beings, though beings are numberless.
                  To penetrate reality, though reality is boundless.
                  To transform all delusion, though delusions are immeasurable.
                  To attain the enlightened way, a way non-attainable.
                  [/size:z6oilzbt]

                  Comment

                  • Shonin
                    Member
                    • Apr 2009
                    • 885

                    #10
                    Re: Savior of Crickets

                    *sits upside down in a chair* Did I ever mention I like cookies, Dave ? 8)

                    Will -/-

                    Comment

                    • Jundo
                      Treeleaf Founder and Priest
                      • Apr 2006
                      • 39453

                      #11
                      Re: Savior of Crickets

                      Originally posted by ZenDave
                      *sits upside down in a chair* Did I ever mention I like cookies, Dave ? 8)

                      Will -/-
                      No "Dharma Combat" around here, please, Dave and Will. Just sit in your chair and eat your cookies.

                      I think that wrestling a bit with the "Precept on Avoiding the Taking of Life" during Jukai study will be very worthwhile for you, Dave.

                      The Dalai Lama story is worthwhile ... as is this story from when Treeleaf Tsukuba (a wooden building joined without nails) was infested with termites ...

                      viewtopic.php?p=21077#p21077

                      I also try to trap any insects we find in the house and let them free outside. Sometimes, though, when a wasp or the like is buzzing around my son ... and won't take a hint ... SLAP!

                      But perhaps we can hold off detailed discussion of these issues until we start our Precepts study discussion group in a few days ... otherwise, we might have nothing to talk about!

                      Gassho, Jundo
                      ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

                      Comment

                      • Shonin
                        Member
                        • Apr 2009
                        • 885

                        #12
                        Re: Savior of Crickets

                        Dharma combat? No no . For me that would be like going up to Mike Tyson and telling him I could box better.I'm the one that doesn't know what i'm talking about.

                        I have some ideas on the shoe on the head response Nansen was later given.But all in all i'm like " uhh what was that supposed to mean."

                        I didn't know where he was going with it, so I just chose to be nonsensical in a manner where it looked like i might have some wisdom. All in fun I promise.

                        Dave _/_

                        Comment

                        • Tobiishi
                          Member
                          • Jan 2009
                          • 461

                          #13
                          Re: Savior of Crickets

                          Here's one for ya- I went a step beyond not killing the spiders I'm freaked out by, and bought a tarantula. I have not held her yet (which my 13 yr old finds endlessly sissified) but I will. I will...

                          gassho
                          tobi
                          It occurs to me that my attachment to this body is entirely arbitrary. All the evidence is subjective.

                          Comment

                          • Shonin
                            Member
                            • Apr 2009
                            • 885

                            #14
                            Re: Savior of Crickets

                            Tobi, sweeeet! My lil bro couldn't get me to hold is. I was like uhhhh, looks perfectly cool in the aquarium. Can I play with the gecko?

                            Dave _/_

                            Comment

                            • Keishin
                              Member
                              • Jun 2007
                              • 471

                              #15
                              Re: Savior of Crickets

                              everything wants to live

                              I see what happens when my immune system isn't all it needs to be


                              to be alive means I am sustaining myself by the destruction and reassembling of parts of other things into the temporarily organized collective of cellular material I call me

                              This goes on all the time, everywhere

                              I brush my teeth, I gargle, I rub my hand over my arm: killing millions, millions. This doesn't stop me from using mouthwash or soap.

                              Yet I don't use clorox to get my kitchen sink whitewhite. I let things co-exist in the pipes.

                              As far as insects go--the situation itself determines my response. I couldn't tell you right now what it would be.
                              In that moment without a second thought there is action--carnage or relocation. I offer apologies in either case.

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