Amnesty International is a favorite organization of mine. The picture to the left is from the ad that they have placed on several blogs concerning "extraordinary rendition
" or sending people abroad for interrogation where our distaste for torture is not shared. It will have no appeal to those who have convinced themselves that the people who might be our enemies are less than real human beings. But then these people are quite probably looking at a future life sometime when they will actually be
less than human beings. This is sad, but only so much can be done, even by a Buddhist with a commitment to work for the benefit of all. A link to the Dharma in some future life can be established merely by sincere prayers that it occur. But how many lives it will take before that link matures is not forseeable, at least not by me.
The greatest scholar of my own Buddhist tradition, Gampopa
, describes the process of karmic results as follows: every significant action that we commit will occur to us not just once, but many times in our future lives. He also points out that thought is the seed of overt action, and approving of someone else's action mentally has the same ultimate effect as doing the action yourself. So be careful what you think, you may be digging quite a deep hole for yourself in the future.