The Buddha preached a life of moderation, his Middle Way — a path of moderation away from the extremes of self-indulgence and self-mortification. In doing so he drew our attention to the Four Noble Truths of The Nature of Suffering(Dukkha),Suffering's Origin (Samudaya), Suffering's Cessation (Nirodha) and The Way (Mārga) Leading to the Cessation of Suffering.
The Middle Way was preached through the Nobel Eightfold Path of 1) Right view, 2) Right Intention, 3) Right Speech, 4) Right Action, 5) Right Livelihood, 6)Right Effort, 7)Right Mindfulness and 8) Right Concentration which in turn helps one acquire Knowledge and Liberation
It should be saddening to consider just how far the monks of today, the preachers of the Dharma have in fact moved away from the very teachings they were entrusted to protect.
Simplicity of lifestyle, uncompromising integrity, impartiality, and active responsiveness to the sufferings of others, these are foundations of Buddhism
They may mouth the words but in reality a majority of them in fact chose to live in a manner that is a far cry from a life of moderation. Why enter politics, aquire wealth, go around in a mercedes,apply for a driving license?! Are these not the material things that the Buddha preached we should try to separate ourselves from?
But, apparently, this is the nature of things, and this was foretold by the Buddha himself, that there would come a time that the only thing to distinguish a Buddhist Priest from a layman would be by a colored thread tied around his waist and that he would be found fishing by the sea shore.
It would seem to me that our monks indeed are striving to bring us to those times, assisted by like minded laymen who encourage them to move away from the preachings for their own selfish gains.
Saddened we should be to see this rot in so obscene a manner as the use of force, in the accumulation of wealth, of double standards and I am a shamed.
But there will come a time, when another Buddha will walk upon this earth, Maitreya's coming is supposed to take place when the teachings of the Gautama Buddha, the Dharma, are no longer taught and have in fact been completely forgotten.
His (Maitreya's) coming is to be characterized by many physical events - shrinking oceans apparently being one. His coming, the event will also allow the unveiling of the "true" dharma to the people, and the construction of a new world.
I'm no expert in this area, but apparently the appearance of Maiteya Buddha will also mean an end to low point of human existence.
A light then, far away, to hope for, at the end of this deepening darkness that is.