Buddha on the U.S. Election

Dr Spanklebums, whose new radio pod is too big for me to download, and bound to be brilliant not least because it contains an “Ask A Latino” phone in slot, has blown the cobwebs off the comments feature and sent along a useful opinion.

He charges that there’s too much worry and not enough class here at CW. Specifically, my hopes of a Catholic Marxist tradition emerging in the Southern United States is woefully ungrounded in an analysis of history. Although New England was initially conceived as a Protesant anti-capitalist enclave, crossing my fingers for revolutionary Jesuits to spring from the Bible Belt is, well, a little too wishful. Guilty as charged.

But I still think there are important lessons for religion to teach politics. In a colleague’s room the other day, I noticed a small beautiful smiling Buddha. As these things tend to, the conversation rolled towards Buddha’s reaction to the U.S. election. The answer, we concluded, is that the Buddha would smile. Take time to look at that smile next time you see it. It’s not the smile of joyful belly-laughing or benediction or cheerful always-look-on-the-bright-side-of-life good humour. It’s the smile of someone whose high expectations have been permanently wiped away.