Most of us have heard about the ‘trolley dilemma’ relating to Buddhism, but placed in that very situation, what would you actually do?
I’ve pondered on this for a while now and even had discussions & debates with Buddhist monks. Despite the many different viewpoints, I can’t help feeling there are still things for consideration – but first let’s look at the scenario……
You’re standing on a bridge over 2 railway tracks. A little while ago, the police arrested 6 people for a serious crime and they are now all handcuffed and waiting for arrest. Five of these people are face down on the first track. The other person is cuffed & face down on the other track. The next train isn’t due for another 15 mins but from the bridge you can see in the distance, a train trolley hurtling down towards the track with 5 people on. Right next to you is a signal box with a large iron lever. If you pull the lever, the trolley will switch tracks and hit one person instead of 5.
It’s in your hands now but before you decide, consider these factors…..
1- By allowing the train to hit one man you can save 5 lives but what gives you the right to decide that one man matters less than the other 5?
2- Karma already decided their fate which is why they’re in that situation so really you don’t need to do anything. But then what about your own karma if you knowingly let people die?
3- You could also walk away and pretend you never saw anything after all – if they weren’t criminals they wouldn’t be there in the first place. But could you honestly live with the consequences of walking away? Again what about your own karma?
What’s your viewpoint on this? Let’s have a discussion
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