Mountain View Buddhist Temple Statement on the Ukraine Crisis

The Sangha of the Mountain View Buddhist Temple condemns the Russian invasion of Ukraine and calls for an immediate end to this crisis so that normalcy can be returned to the Ukrainian people as soon as possible. We extend our compassion and deepest condolences to the victims of the Ukrainian Crisis.

It is with profound sadness and misgivings that the entire world now witnesses the invasion of Ukraine by Russia. We can only imagine the Ukrainian people’s grief, confusion and horror at the sudden loss of their beloved ones, their peaceful daily life, and at witnessing and enduring the destruction of their homeland. Public buildings, private facilities and residential areas alike are being destroyed and innocent blood is being shed. Even the nuclear power plant was attacked, so we also face a growing nuclear crisis.

War is an outgrowth of human greed, anger and ignorance. These emotions find justification for attack to the exclusion of those on the other side. Both sides claim that they alone are justified, resulting in the many innocent lives injured or taken in the name of justice.

For this reason, true justice should always be based on wisdom, loving kindness and compassion, without anger or hatred. From this perspective, for all Buddhists, whatever the reasons given, the invasion of another country out of anger, greed or hatred will never be acceptable.

Sakyamuni Buddha said the following: All people are frightened by violence and all people are afraid of death. Life is beloved by all people. Therefore, we must put ourselves in the other person’s place: we must not kill others and we must teach others not to kill.

With Buddha’s wise guidance, let us reflect on how innocent citizens are being targeted and killed, and imagine the fear and suffering of the Ukrainian people under attack whose basic human rights are being disregarded. If each of us could imagine ourself in another person’s dire situation, we could never condone hurting others out of greed, anger, hatred or discrimination.

May all beings be happy and well. May they all be free from pain and suffering. May they be free from illness, anguish and grief. May they all be free from discrimination and violence. May our wish for world peace bless all people living in Ukraine. May all of our loving kindness ring throughout the ages.

In Gassho (with palms together),

Rev. Yushi Mukojima, Resident Minister
Bob Matsumoto, Temple President
The Mountain View Buddhist Temple Sangha