Who or what is the smallest BIG person or thing in your life?
Its interesting that you say that bonsai isn’t cruelty in any aspect. I really wonder about that.
Bonsai is limiting the root growth, and strictly limiting the growth of something that if left in another environment with more nutrients and less trimming would grow into a full sized tree.
If the analogy is taken to today’s society, it is as if we are bonsai-ing most of the people on the planet, by strictly limiting the information and resources we give them, thus strictly limiting their growth and potential development.
I know that the person producing the bonsai rarely intends cruelty.
I realise that trees produce so many seeds that most can never develop, and must die, so one could say that any sort of life is better than no life – which might be true in the bonsai tree example.
It is also true that bonsai trees require a great deal of care if they are to retain the illusion of health and vitality, and that their root mass is so small that they can easily die from desiccation if not regularly watered. Bonsai is not a secure existence from the perspective of the bonsai itself.
So while I see merit in bonsai as a tool to train human awareness, to retain focus and action over long periods, I do find it a very dangerous model to try to apply to humanity at the social level (as our capitalist system seems to be doing).
I don’t see any merit in keeping people small by restricting their inputs in any sense, however much love one applies to the process. The only real freedom and security for human beings comes from growth of awareness, and such growth requires that all of our physical needs are met. And we are not like trees, that grow indefinitely, we do have limited physical needs, but unlimited needs for information and freedom of action.