Dinner Conversation with Buddhist Prompts Contemplation of Worlds

A Buddhist scholar believed the inspiration behind John Lennon’s song “Imagine,” was Buddhism’s Heart Sutra.

A Buddhist scholar believed the inspiration behind John Lennon’s song “Imagine,” was Buddhism’s Heart Sutra.

According to an article recently completed for the blog of The Christian Post, a dinner conversation with a Buddhist scholar raised many questions for the Protestant Christian author of the blog post. The scholar declared that they believed the inspiration behind John Lennon’s song “Imagine,” was Buddhism’s Heart Sutra, which indicates that the Buddha Gotama discovered freedom depends on one’s own realization of Truth and not external power as a reward for good behavior.

From this topic of conversation, the author started contemplating on what songs created based in the Bible would paint a picture of. What type of world would these songs create? Instead of a world lacking materialistic burdens, these songs would focus on replacing a world of hatred and indifference with God’s unconditional forgiveness and love. This is all possible through Jesus Christ, through his actions, which broke the cycle of sin, indifference and hatred amongst the human race. While he hung on the cross, he asked his Father for forgiveness for those responsible.

This then raised another question for the author—an endeavor to imagine undergoing Jesus’s suffering, and still managing to forgive those responsible. Paul says that humans were God’s enemies, and He still managed to forgive all sins and hatred. It is only through realizing and appreciating the cost God expended in forgiving and accepting humans that we could forgive and accept others.

The author then applied this to the conversation they had with the Buddhist scholar, which evolved to discuss the responsibility of one’s actions. Karma, a prominent Buddhist belief, revolves around one action’s creation of a reaction. From there, a cycle is created, in which the believer is never truly free of their previous actions. Is this the world Lennon intended to pay tribute to? Is this the world the reader wishes to live in? Or would it be preferable to experience God’s grace and forgiveness? This very grace and forgiveness, in the author’s opinion, is what allows for the vicious cycle started by ideals such as karma to be broken. Through God’s infinite compassion, believers are able to create actions of love, instead of hate and indifference, creating a far more preferable world.