Update: 20/09/2020
Everyone in life also has at least one person to adore and worship. Often people give passionate affection to singers, actors, artists, bands, groups, sports athletes .... These objects are collectively called idols. "Idol" is used by people as a fine word to refer to a person or a group of people possessing talents that make others admire and respect. In general, the "idol" culture is quite diverse, and has appeared for a long time, transcending all boundaries, class, religion, race, color.



At an appropriate level, idol culture creates quite positive effects on the attitudes, beliefs, awareness and inspiration ... of fans, helping them strive to practice, study, and rise in life. However, if you do not know how to choose, find yourself a blind and confused idol, that is the cause of the deviation in thinking and acting, bringing many misery and suffering for yourself, relatives, family and even people who are idolized. From many angles, idols are not inherently bad, but the "idol mania" is too much to be removed in order to maintain a balanced psychological state.

Idol culture, in all times, has always had one thing in common, that is its popularity and spread rapidly in the community. Anyone who possesses the superior elements has the ability to be exalted as an idol, even the monastic monk, dubbed the eminent monk, behind all fame ... have also been labeled "my idol". Here we are not talking much about the idol culture of society, but about the idolatry of Buddhists.

Looking directly at the current situation, we see many sad truths. The question arises: Why is today's Buddhist idol standard so permissive? In the past, only excellent pedagogical masters of gender, concentration, wisdom, capable of profoundly interpreting the Dhamma will be honored as idols. Today, young monks who possess a few things of life talent such as singing well, piano well, drawing beautiful pictures, cooking well, possessing photo-shaped faces ... are also praised and exalted as idols. Many young Buddhists have also created ‘Fan Club’ on social networks to attract fans and polish the reputation of their idols. They are also not afraid to use the tactic of "defaming" their opponents or surpassing their idols. Just by skimming through a few groups on facebook or Youtube channels, we can easily see the stinging and disparaging comments like "this teacher is not right", "the other teacher said incorrectly". Only "my teacher is right".

The excessive idolatry of those claiming to be the Buddha is called the act of delusion by the intellect, creating many blissful things. This is a serious disease contagious to the community, leaving many serious consequences for oneself, family, society and the dharma, and needs to be discussed to find the right and healthy thinking. strong.

There are many Buddhist parents who come to the temple to confide that they are very concerned about their children over idolizing that teacher and neglect their studies, always looking for an excuse to go to the temple to worship Buddha or work as a servant. But the main purpose is to meet and be close to your idols. In many other cases, it is sadder, when many young people are in too deep contact with their idols at night and are deeply in love with each other, feeling like "we are each other". Not as "a way to find a way to give birth" to prove his love for his idol. That makes many parents hurt, love teachers, and pity their children.

Or many husbands and wives post news lines on their personal social networking sites, complaining that from the day my husband, wife go to the temple to be close to their Master, neglect housework, excessive financial spending on desperation, making offerings to and supporting the Buddha for the Master…. The above incidents create many cracks in the family relationship, and sometimes it also makes the idol fall into the scene of "blinding and fluttering", unjustified jaw. Even more frightening is the cold war between young Buddhists and old Buddhists in the temple, fighting "for idols".

When a young Buddhist is in close contact with his idol, if she has a bad face, rough limbs ... it's okay, but beautiful, pretty face is fine, I have to protect my idol. "Heavy face in and out, eyebrows swollen, eyes wide open". And when the young Buddhists found their idols too close to the elders, they complained that the teacher only cared about the elderly girls or made offerings ... enviously, angry and ignored the temple. From time to time, the two old and young sides collide because of the competition for the idol's interest. "It's hateful to meet." Many tensions, the two sides overthrew their idols.

These are misleading manifestations that are somewhat psychologically ill, directly affecting the idol himself, causing many negative impacts on the family, society and moreover affecting the reputation of the master. ordained. It can be said that "idol madness" is a monk, is a serious disease, especially infectious for those who go to the temple, tend to be psychologically dreamy or weak, and suffer from many painful failures. family, career and study ... They look to idols as a remedy for their own pain, or a search to compensate for the lack of love of family, a fulcrum to rely on seeing life unsteady with no clinging, no direction. That is why they become dependent on idols, dependent on others happy and sad, forgetting their own efforts to practice and strive.

When their idols shine, they rejoice in their dreamlike feelings of happiness and pride. But when idols lose their talent and popularity for some reason, they also collapse according to their idols. If we do not fully understand this "idol mania" disease, we will not know the emotional balance with idols. At that time, the unfortunate consequences that happened to themselves and their idols were inevitable.

The truth is, there is no truly solid fulcrum. We cannot depend on anyone for life, except ourselves. Idols no matter how good, they only come with us a short distance, the long way ahead of us must go on our own. As Buddha's children, we must always note that. "Make your own island. Rely on the teachings of the Buddha. Rely on yourself, not on anyone else".

Their idols are understood as a ladder to help them climb, not merely a support for the weak. The fall of idols, then no longer a painful disappointment with them, but a sign of their spiritual maturity: we have let go of the burden of attachment, weakness, fear, reaching a stronger and more lucid mental state; From now on, I can stand on my own with my feet. In this way, the admiration for idols is true, and the words "idol" are truly reserved for those who deserve it.

Tâm Hiệp

Translated by Bui Ngoc Trinh


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