Post Reply
Page 3 of 8  •  Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 8 Next
2 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2012 - 9:54AM #21
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 834

Mar 27, 2012 -- 8:42AM, allen-uk wrote:


Bhakta_glenn: I thought you had pointed me towards Theravada because of its lack of mysticism... "You may find the Theravada Buddhist School more to your liiking since it does not teach any form of mysticism. It is an Analytical Vehicle," you wrote.


Yet now you give examples of their prayers. 


I am a little more confused now.


Allen.




allen-uk,


I am sorry if I have confused you.


The Theravada Vehicle does not teach mysticism.


However, it does provide protective prayers for those who need them.


I think that you may find real help on these two websites:


www.satipanya.org.uk/index.php?page=audi...


www.londonbuddhistvihara.org/


Initially, I thought that you were making an enquiry about prayers in Tibetan Buddhism.


Tibetan Buddhism is a Devotional Vehicle. But, Devotional Service to the Guru means offering Devotional Service to one's fellow man by developing compassion for his suffering. All of the prayers and Mantras are to that end.


However, Devotional Service in tibetan Buddhism is not to the Guru alone. It is also to the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha.


Theravada Buddhism also has a Devotional Path.


The reason for the apparent anomaly in Theravada Budhdism is people. They are all differentiated by Karma; and they have differing spiritual needs. Some people are rationalists and others are more intuitive.


But, overall, Theravada Buddhism tends to Analsysis, whilst Tibetan Buddhism tends to Mysticism. The Four Noble Truths is central to both Schools, along with Metta.


Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2012 - 3:59PM #22
Bob0
Posts: 485
Allen:


Here is a link to a more basic, less esoteric, teaching of the Dharma. I hope you find it as useful as I do.




Also I would recommend a book, The Collected Teachings of Ajahn Chah. Food For The Heart.


Both Luang Pu and Ajahn Chah came from what is described as the Thai Forest Monk Tradition. Both offer quite a big bite of simple wisdom. No magic, no esoteric teachings. Just plain simple dharma put to use in their daily lives. I suggest you don't try to devour it all in one bite but take your time and let the wisdom seep in.


I hope this helps.

Bob
Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Mar 29, 2012 - 9:40PM #23
MY_Khim
Posts: 25

a fren, a reborn christian was agressively posting on her facebook wall & got me reviewing on my collection of good (buddhism) responses, one of which was on prayers.  i hope this can answer  allen's question on prayers:  buddhists pray FOR & not TO


"If prayer means an earnest request or wish, then yes Buddhists pray when they wish that everyone can awaken, that everyone will live a good life without harming another, etc. The wish is not in the sense that it will be answered by a God, but in the sense that one prays for a sunny day if one is going to play outdoors tomorrow. Buddhists generically pray for good things to happen even knowing that there is no God who makes things happen in answer to prayers. Buddhists wish and pray that everyone exercises their good karma so that the results of their karma will be good, but Buddhists know that each person is responsible for their karma and there is no God to answer the prayer."


nonetheless i confess that in times of unbearable either mental or physical 'suffering' i pray TO buddha FOR healing & miracurously or perhaps my past good karma lol.. works!


may all b well & happy always..


 

Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 03, 2012 - 7:03AM #24
allen-uk
Posts: 25

Thanks Bob0, I'll certainly look into them - but as you have guessed, there comes a point where there is so much to 'look into' that you become overwhelmed with it all. Oh for a long(er) life.



And thanks to you to, MY-Khim.




Allen.

Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 13, 2012 - 2:12AM #25
etoro
Posts: 568

Apr 3, 2012 -- 7:03AM, allen-uk wrote:


Thanks Bob0, I'll certainly look into them - but as you have guessed, there comes a point where there is so much to 'look into' that you become overwhelmed with it all. Oh for a long(er) life.



And thanks to you to, MY-Khim.




Allen.




Hey Allen I am a life long Nichiren Buddhist of Puerto Rican ancestry here in New York. Nichiren Buddhism is the final school of Mahayana Buddhism to appear on the planet after a period of 1800 years as Buddhism spread from India to China, Korea and Japan. Japanese Buddhism is grounded upon the extensive wisdom and insight of the Chinese systematization of all the Buddha's teachings. All the issues of viewing and seeking to understand Buddhism from the point of view of a foreign culture were addressed in Chinese and Japanese Buddhism. 


The Buddha wisdom that migrated from India to China came in several intervening time periods and each of these phases in several hundred year intervals reflected the changes and developments that had occurred within Indian Buddhism itself. Developments within applications of Indian Buddhist doctrine itself relfected the growing adoption of Buddhism within the mainstream cultures of India. Perhaps the most significant period of Buddhist penetration and broad application of Buddhist principles into social culture occured during the reign of King Ashoka. It is during this time period that the distinctions in views between the conservative Theravadins who held to the teachings of the "voice hearer" disciples as opposed to the views of the more progressivce schools such as the Mahasanghika, Sarvastivadin and Mulasarvastivadin schools were best distinguished.  


Any true and diligent student of Buddhism who is worth his salt will agree that the distinctions found among the first 18 sectarian schools developed after the passing of the Buddha which are themselves branches of the above three Theravada, Mahasanghika and Sarvastivadin revolve around disputes over the definitions offered regarding the true nature of experienced phenomena. These experiences refer to the six life states of the non- Buddhist conventional world of every day experience such as hellish anguish, insatiable craving, the cruelty of animality, the cunning of hatred, the amicability of reasonableness and the joy of heavenly bliss. Beyond these normal states of conventional reality, the Buddha through the power of his wisdom and skillful means opened up new avenues of understanding and wisdom within the minds eye of his disciples. These realms were given the name of the four noble or inner paths of direct listeners of Buddha's voice, self realizers, Bodhisattva and Buddhahood. The first three noble paths are known as "The three Vehicles" and the last is called the Single Vehicle Doctrine of Buddhahood itself.  It was after five hundred years of deliberation among the various schools of Chinese monks that they concluded that the single vehicle doctrine of Buddhahood alone was the correct teaching for the people of the highly disputational latter days of the Buddha dharma.  This is known as the Buddha Vehicle of the Sad Dharma Pundarika Sutra.


This final teaching and practice teaches that the true aspect of reality is inherent in all phenomena and all phenomena are inherent in the true aspect of reality.  The fundamental teachings of Buddhism establish that the six sense organs, six sense objects and the six sense consciousnesses are the matrix upon which all phenomena in the universe make their appearance. Among the six sense organs the function of mind is the sixth organ. It is through a mastery of one's own mind that one attains true wisdom and true liberation. As the true nature of the mind was elaborated in Buddhism, the Buddha and his disciples adapted more subtle distinctions regarding the functions and nature of the mind, between deluded mind and enlightened mind. 


As we explore the principles regarding the true nature of the mind as derived from Buddhist philosophy such discriptions became the source of contraversy and gave rise to the various Buddhist schools of thought such as the notion of hinayana and mahayana, the great exposition or abhidharma school, the sautrantika or sutra only school, the cittamattra or mind only school and the middle way school. 


The western European world is only recently entering into the wisdom of Buddhism and are still very hampered by the recent political developments of the last 500 years driven by the policies of domination and colonialism by Europeans towards the Asian nations. This has prevented the complete picture of Sino-Japanese Mahayana Buddhism from being brought forth as against the popularity of the Dalai Lama as an exiled political figure which in turn has served to romantacize and popularize the feudal cultural and highly esoteric strains of Tibetan Buddhism.    


Many people of the west are still yet unaware of the vast significance of the accomplishments of the great Chinese sage Tien Tai Chih-hi or Dengyo Daishi of Japan and in particular Nichiren of the Lotus Sutra school. This expansion of Buddhist doctrines across the three major countries served to tease out the most universal principles of Buddhism, those principles that attest to the correct insights of the Buddha and the basis for establishing the Lotus Sutra as the actual true teaching of the Buddha, the teaching which opens the direct gateway to Buddhahood in this one lifetime for all living beings. This principle is complicated and profound and yet the only way to attain actual Buddhahood is through the wisdom of the Lotus Sutra. 

Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2012 - 6:21AM #26
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 834

Alan-Uk


I found this mantra for Green Tara who can help a student to overcome obstacles on the Path to Enlightenent:



whilst this may return to the theme of invisible gods and goddesses, it still offers a bona fide path to  Enlightenenment which you may find useful at some point.



Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2012 - 11:48AM #27
etoro
Posts: 568

Apr 16, 2012 -- 6:21AM, Bhakta_glenn wrote:


Alan-Uk


I found this mantra for Green Tara who can help a student to overcome obstacles on the Path to Enlightenent:



whilst this may return to the theme of invisible gods and goddesses, it still offers a bona fide path to  Enlightenenment which you may find useful at some point.






The so called "Green Tara" is an expedient device, simply one of the many faces of Avalokiteshvara, the Bodhisattva Perceiver of the Cries of all the World", yet another expedient device, a skillfull means. Avalokiteshvara makes various appearances throughout the Mahayana sutras of Buddhism.  His primary associations begin as a disciple of the Buddha of the Western Paradise known as Amida Buddha. He serves as an assistant and guide to lead all beings to the gateway of the Buddha. Avalotikeshvara serves to display that all phenomena are simply non-substantial in nature and all phenomena can serve as a gateway to the Buddha wisdom and can be converted from evil to good.  But this is yet another expedient devise. One that is useful for a time when the psychic mindframe of the people were ripe for such perspectives; a time when mythological, non-scientific beliefs held sway in the mindset of the people.


Great historians such as Josepf Campbell and Arnold Toynbee were capable of placing such teachings in their proper context.  The great Oxford historian Arnold Toynbee stated,


"the two great discoveries of this century were the theory of relativity in the realm of physics and the work of uncovering the unconscious in the realm of psychology. .............the discovery of the unconscious revealed that each individual is in fact a cosmos, a universe."


Also, credit for the discovery of the unconscious in Western psychology goes to Freud, whose work was followed by Adler, Jung, Maslow and others, who have dramatically extended our exploration of the psychic cosmos.


But later through the Lotus Sutra we learn that Amida Buddha, the retainer of Avalokiteshvara himself is simply an emanation Buddha, a projection cast by Shakyamuni Buddha as a form of expedient means to guide the people of the human and heavenly realms to the Buddha's Land of Eternal Tranquil Light. This is why in the end the Sutra of Avalokiteshvara (Green Tara)  was inserted within the "Vaipulya" of the Lotus Sutra in order to provide an order and context as to the function of Avalokiteshvara among the psychic pedogogical functions of Shakyamuni Buddha.   


In accordance with the wisdom of the Sad Dharma Pundarika Sutra this Bodhisattva no longer has any power to lead the people of our time, an age of very low psychic ability, to the state of Buddhahood.  The reason is because the Buddha himself told such Bodhisattvas that their purpose and function would no longer be necessary. Here are the reasons why.


The Lotus Sutra was preached by the Buddha at the age of 72 for 8 years. These teachings contain a profound Buddha wisdom regarding the psychic affairs of humanity in the period after the Buddha's passing in relation to "the opening up" of the Buddha nature, the dimensional realm of eternity, true self identity, purity and abolute joy.  Buddhism divides the period after the Buddha's passing into three pyschic periods known as the former. middle and latter days of the Buddha Dharma. This concerns the fact that there is a pyschic relationship between the Buddha and the people, between the "eternally present aspect of life" and "the conditional temporal existence of the mundane".  The wisdom of the Lotus Sutra provides the cognitive matrix for understanding this relationship and the means and methods by which all  Buddha's open up the gateway to the eternal wisdom.


All Bodhisattvas are simply messengers of the Buddha and each have their respectiove functions in accordance with time, place and the peoples psychic capacity in such places. ther Psychic capacity or the powers of mental faculty itself are a function of merits acquired through thoughts, words and deeds performed (karma) in the interest of both good and evil desires during past lifetimes. The Buddha's enlightenment is effected upon an observance of these dharmas, their functions and outcomes. As Yoichi Kawada, Director of the Institute of Oriental Philosophy stated, 


In the East some 2,500 years ago, Shakyamuni, widely known as the Buddha, creatively adapted and recast the ancient philosophy of the Upanishads as he developed his own philosophy. His awakening as he meditated beneath the bodhi tree may be considered a seminal event, a critical moment, in Eastern psychology. This awakening started with his insights into his own unconscious and expanded to illuminate a vast psychic cosmos.


His exploration of his inner world, this inner cosmos, moved beyond the individual level, deepening eventually to include all humankind. He continued to explore the bounds of selfhood, from commonality of all living things, to those depth realms where the self is fused with the Earth, the solar system and the entire universe. He finally awakened to the fundamental wisdom of life, the life of the universe itself, which gives rise to all phenomena as they evolve in harmonious unity with the psychic cosmos.


Later practitioners would refer to the cosmic life-force to which Shakyamuni awakened as the Buddha-nature. They would explore means and methods of practice by which all people can manifest the vast energy, dignity and wisdom of this life-state; methods, in other words , of self-empowerment. - Yoichi Kawada, director of The Institute of Oriental Philosophy, Tokyo (August 26, 1999, at the American Psychological Association Convention, Boston, USA)


In this regard the Buddha knew that the people's connection to the Buddha Dharma during the latter ages would be hampered by deep impurities of the self nature, deep attachments to earthly desires and that the expedient devices he devised for the people of former ages would no longer function to open up the gateway to eternity for them.  In accordance with the Lotus Sutra, this is why  the Buddha held the ceremony of the Lotus Sutra and why he summoned forth the Bodhisattvas of the eternal gateway; the Bodhisattvas of the Earth.


Among the features of the Lotus Sutra is a classification of all Buddha's and Bodhisattvas in accordance with their respective identity and functions. Since among the functions of the Lotus Sutra is to clarify the distinction between the provisional and true teaching, conventional and ultimate truth as well as their actual interconnection from the standpoint of the true aspect of all phenomena, Bodhisattvas such as Maitreya, Manjushri and even Avalokiteshvara are identified as to their function and purpose.  When the Buddha prepares to reveal his true identity and the essential aspect of his enlightenment, all for the purpose of leaving the actual seeds of Buddhahood for the sake of future generations. he suumons forth his original disciples from the remotest past.  This event is recorded in the 15th chapter of the Lotus Sutra.


By the 15th chapter of the Lotus Sutra the Bodhisattvas from "other worlds" are all sufficiently entreated with great witnessing and great admonishment to bear up to the responsibility to preserve the Buddha wisdom for the sake of future generations upon the Buddha's passing, As they offer great pledges and vows of determination just then the Buddha suddenly reverses himself and  states in a booming voice,


“Enough, O sons of a virtuous family! There is no need for you to
preserve this sutra. Why is this? In my sahā world there are bodhisattva
mahāsattvas, equal to the sands of sixty thousand Ganges Rivers in number;
and each of these bodhisattvas, in turn, has a retinue equal to the sands of
sixty thousand Ganges Rivers. After my parinirvāṇa they can preserve, recite,
and extensively teach this sutra.”
When the Buddha said this all the lands of the great manifold cosmos
in the sahā world quaked and the earth split. From out of this crevice there
simultaneously appeared incalculable thousands of myriads of koṭis of bodhisattva
mahāsattvas. All of these bodhisattvas had golden bodies endowed
with the thirty-two marks and radiating immeasurable rays of light. They
had all previously been living in the space under the earth of the sahā world.
Having heard the sound of Śākyamuni’s teaching, all of these bodhisattvas
emerged from below.
Each of those bodhisattvas presided over a great assembly and each led
a retinue equal to the sands of sixty thousand Ganges Rivers in number. How
much more numerous were the bodhisattvas who emerged leading retinues
equal in number to the sands of fifty thousand, forty thousand, thirty thousand,
twenty thousand, or ten thousand Ganges Rivers!" LS Chapter 15. 


Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara is also among the disciples in the audience who were dumbfounded and startled when the Buddha reversed himself and the Bodhisattvas from beneath the Earth began to make their appearance.  The sutra states,   


"All these bodhisattva mahāsattvas, having emerged from the earth, praised the buddhas with various bodhisattva eulogies. While they did, fifty intermediate kalpas passed.


During this time the Buddha Śākyamuni sat in silence; and the fourfold
assemblies were also silent while the fifty intermediate kalpas passed. Because
of the Buddha’s transcendent powers, the great assemblies believed that the
time that had passed was only half a day. Then, through the transcendent
powers of the Buddha, the fourfold assemblies also saw the bodhisattvas
filling the air throughout immeasurable hundreds of thousands of myriads
of koṭis of lands.


There were four leaders among those bodhisattvas gathered there. They
were called Viśiṣṭacāritra, Anantacāritra, Viśuddha cāritra, and Supratiṣṭhita -
cāritra. These four bodhisattvas were the foremost leaders in the assembly." - LS ch15, 


The Buddha wisdom embedded in these passages are deep, subtle and profound.  The notion of the period of time that passes (50 intermediate kalpas) while such events are taking place indicates the psychic mindframes which are being played out in these events.  They represent the yogic awareness of the qualities and functions of the primordial minds that are interacting among the Buddha and his disciples. They represent a quality of understanding and awareness regarding the functions of a purified mind that sees into the long term realities that underlay our respective karmic conditions.   Consider the follow up statement made by the Buddha after an inquiry is made by the leader of the Bodhisattvas of the Earth regarding these proceedings. 


At that time the Bhagavat spoke to the great assembly of bodhisattvas,
saying: “It is exactly like this, O sons of a virtuous family! It is exactly so!
The Tathāgata is at ease and without illness or pain. It is easy to save sentient
beings, and I am not fatigued. Why is this? Because sentient beings have continually
received my guidance throughout many lives, and they have also
planted roots of good merit by revering and honoring the buddhas of the past.
“When these sentient beings first saw me and heard my teaching, all,
except for those who had previously practiced and studied the inferior vehicle,
immediately believed and accepted it and entered the Tathāgata’s wisdom.
Now I enable even such people as these to listen to this sutra and enter
the Buddha’s wisdom.”


The highlighted text above points out the insight and means and methods by which the Buddha not only guides beings into the eternal realm but alo converts their mindframe from provisional thought onto the state of eternal identity.


After the Buddha makes this statement the ancient Bodhisattva's respond by saying,


"Splendid, splendid!
O Bhagavat, Great Hero!
All the sentient beings
Can easily be brought to the path.
They can ask about
The profound wisdom of the buddhas.
Hearing about it, they trust and accept it.
We rejoice about this." - LS ch15



Yet this chapter also seeks to point out the mental state of the provisional Bodhisattvas such as Maitreya and the others where it says, 


"Then Bodhisattva Maitreya and the assembly of bodhisattvas equal in
number to the sands of eight thousand Ganges Rivers thought this:
Looking far into the past, we have never seen or heard of such an
assembly of great bodhisattva mahāsattvas, who have now emerged
from the earth and are standing before the Bhagavat with their palms
pressed together in reverence, asking the Tathāgata questions." LS ch15



The above passage points to the deeper dimension of wisdom and insight that is opened up through the pychic channels of the Sad-Dharma Pundarika. 


Then Bodhisattva Mahāsattva Maitreya, knowing the minds of the bodhisattvas
whose number was equal to the sands of eight thousand Ganges
Rivers, and wanting to clear up their confusion, faced the Buddha with the
palms of his hands pressed together and addressed him in verse, saying:


"We have never seen such a great assembly
Of incalculable thousands of myriads of koṭis
Of bodhisattvas before.
We entreat you, O Best of Humans,
To explain it to us!
Where have they come from?
For what reason have they gathered here?
They look magnificent
And have great transcendent powers.
Their wisdom is beyond our comprehension.
They are firm in their resolve,
Have the power of great perseverance,
And an appearance that sentient beings
Desire to see.
Where have they come from,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,?" LS ch15


"The number of those
Who have come before the Buddha
Is far beyond any calculation.
If anyone counted the number of such a great assembly
With bamboo counting-sticks, he would not finish
Even after exhausting kalpas greater in number
Than the sands of the Ganges River.
Who has taught the Dharma
To this assembly of bodhisattvas,
Endowed with great dignity and perseverance?
Who has inspired and perfected them?"



The question by Bodhisattva Maitreya concerning who the teacher of this great incalculable retinue of Bodhisattvas may be; not conceiving that Shakyamuni Buddha himself could have performed this, is an indication of the truly deep and vast dimension of Buddha wisdom that is being opened up and displayed by Shakyamuni Buddha as he prepares his recent disciples to learn of his true identity.


Those of us who wish to understand how these teachings lay the ground work for correct Buddhist practice in these latter days of the Dharma should deeply inquire into the meaning, power and significance of Nichiren and the Buddhist practice he has manifested in the pyschic planes of the modern age. 





























Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2012 - 2:52PM #28
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 834

Alan-UK


Serene Contemplation




www.visiblemantra.org/white-tara.html


oṃ tāre tuttāre ture mama āyuḥ-puṇya-jñāna-puṣṭiṃ kuru svāhā




It occured to me that if I listen to this mantra of White Tara without understanding the words, my own deep Ignorance may appear in my mind for contemplation, as Awarenss of my own Ignorance.






www.tipitaka.net/tipitaka/dhp/verseload....

Dhammapada Verse 63
Ganthibhedakacora Vatthu

Ya balo mannati balyam
panditovapi tena so
balo ca panditamani
sa ve baloti vuccati.

Verse 63: The fool who knows that he is a fool can, for that reason, be a wise man; but the fool who thinks that he is wise is, indeed, called a fool.




Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2012 - 4:54PM #29
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 834

Re: Pst #26


Alan-UK


I am sorry, I almost forgot:


I have a small prayer book given to me by a Tibetan Nun from the Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism, entitled:


"A Garland of Morning Prayer"


IN THE TRADITION OF MAHAYANA BUDDHISM


The ruling queen of the gods and the asuras is said to be Jetsun Dolma, known as Arya Tara in Sanskrit. She is said to have a special place in the hearts of those on the Bodhisattva Path.


Arya Tara is said to come in two forms, the white and the green. In her green form, she removes difficulties and dangers and blesses the devotees with perfect wisdom. Whilst in her white form, she represents increase in transcending knowledge, long life, and progress in spiritual attainment.


She is the helper of Chenrezi, Avalokiteśvara:


This is Avalokiteśvara's Mantra:




This mantra is said to contain all 84,000 Dharmas of the Buddha.It is recited for Spontaneous Devotion and for the Realisation of the Mahayana Great Vehicle: Buddhism.


In Tibetan Buddhism, one has to have Actually Attained the Four Noble Truths, become an Arahat before graduating to the Mahayana. The reason is that to enter the Bodhisattva Training, one has to Renounce Arahatship, realising Nirvana on one's final deathbed in favour of accepting Eternal Rebirth for the benefit of all sentient beings, to guide them to the realisation of Nirvana, which usually takes place at the end of life.


But, just becasue the realisation of Nirvana takes place at the end of life does not mean that there are no benefits during this life or that one cannot become a Buddha during this life. But, in life, the Bodhisattva is the more noble course of living.


According to Theravada Buddhism, Nibbana [Nirvana] is realised in two stages, during life when one becomes an Arahant, and at Death where Rebirth is finally defeated forever.


Now, if a person has not attained Arahatship, how can he or she renounce it for the benefit of all sentient beings?


Avalokiteśvara is known as Natha-deva in Theravada Buddhism and is popular in Burma, where he is known as Lokanat.


Tara is the Devotional Servant of Avalokiteśvara, his helper, she may be addressed in a Prayer:



Prayer to the Mother of the Buddhas


She who is the ruling queen of the gods and the asuras,


whose sacred foot is resting on the lotus,


She who removes all difficulties whatsoever-


To Dolma, who is the Mother, I bow down.




I am on the Bodhisattva Path of the Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism. I do not have a problem with Death, or the invisible universe. I do not say that I am not scared of dying. But, Theravada Buddhism provides Meditation on Death, and prepars one for it:


Development of the Mindfulnees of Death is one of Four Protective Meditations in Theravada Buddhism:



mahamakuta.inet.co.th/english/b-way%2813...


A BUDDHIST WAY
OF
MENTAL TRAINING

by

Ven. Phra Tepvisuddhikavi
(Pichitr Thitavanno)
Lord Abbot of Wat Somanasvihara

and

Ex-Vice Rector for Academic Affairs,
Lecturer in Buddhism
Mahamakut Buddhist University
Bangkok, Thailand
B.E. 2543 / A.D. 2000

Chapter 13
Four Kinds of Protective Meditation


[...]

4. Maranasati—mindfulness of death

Thus contemplating death, the restless mind will become calm and will be disillusioned with false thoughts and ideas about life and death. In order to get the best results from being mindful of death, it is advised that the following three factors be considered:

 1. Maintaining mindfulness during recollections of death

(keeping the mind fully alert),

2. Having sense of urgency about death’s inevitability,

3. Possessing a clear understanding (nana) that one is sure to die.

If the three factors are combined, then restlessness will be calmed, one will not be afraid of death, and one will make haste in doing good. Therefore this meditation theme is also a protector of the mind.


[...]



Meditation on Death is a part of the Mental Culture which forms a part of Bhavana, Mental Development, the Spritual Training of the Mind which makes the realisation of Arahantship possible.


From very early childhood, I have been regularly seeing ghosts and know that one day I will die. I have a Guru who has shown me how to deal with the ghosts and they do not call any more.


I have been well trained in Theravada Buddhism and know the Entire Path, [though I know very littile Doctrine]. I also practice with Hindu Yoga, which has many similarities with Mahayana Buddhism. Tara is a Goddess in Both Religions. In fact, she is one and the same Goddess but understood in two different ways. Being endowed with Compassion, and a Mother's Love, she is only too willing to help those small human beings who beseech her for help. This is what the Buddha taught about a Mother's Love:



www.bodhicitta.net/Metta%20Sutra.htm

THE METTA SUTTA

[...]

Let none deceive another,
Or despise any being in any state.
Let none through anger or ill-will
Wish harm upon another.
Even as a mother protects with her life
Her child, her only child,
So with a boundless heart
Should one cherish all living beings:
Radiating kindness over the entire world
Spreading upwards to the skies,
And downwards to the depths;
Outwards and unbounded,
Freed from hatred and ill-will.

[...]



When I pray to Tara, or when I recite one of her Mantras, I do not think in terms of praying to an amorphous blob of unanalysable elements called Khandas. My Guruu is a very smart lady, and dresses with sartorial elegance. Therefore, with a sense of mischievous fun, I ask her how the Five Heaps are feeling. The Five Heaps refer to the Five Groups of Existence which the Buddha analysed the  Ego into:




www.budsas.org/ebud/bud-dict/dic_idx.htm

Buddhist Dictionary
Manual of Buddhist Terms and Doctrines,
by NYANATILOKA MAHATHERA

khandha: the 5 'groups (of existence)' or 'groups of clinging' (upādānakkhandha); alternative renderings: aggregates, categories of clinging's objects. These are the 5 aspects in which the Buddha has summed up all the physical and mental phenomena of existence, and which appear to the ignorant man as his ego, or personality, to wit:

(1) the corporeality group (rūpa-kkhandha),

(2) the feeling group (vedanā-kkhandha),

(3) the perception group (saññā-kkhandha),

(4) the mental-formation group (saṅkhāra-kkhandha),

(5) the consciousness-group (viññāṇa-kkhandha).



Therefore, when I pray to Tara, I treat her as an elegant lady, as one would one's Mother, with thoughts of Loving Kindness, and compliment her on her sartorial elegance and her beauty.


True beseechment arises form an inner recognition that not only is one suffeirng but that without spiritual training, one is simply wasting valubale time afforded by a precious human birth. For only as a human being can one become an Arahat, a Bodhisattva, or a Buddha.


I have been blessed with good women in my life. My wife takes care of my daily-life needs, because I am disabled; whilst my Guru takes care of my spiritual training.


I have been practisng Buddhism with the Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism and The Burmese Theravadin School of Buddhism for 22 years. I have found them to be very helpful and that their teachings have really enhanced my daily life, and have really improved my mental health.


This Metta Song provides a very accurate summary of my life since I discovered Buddhism:



Instead of internalising all of my pain, and rage against the disablity, I now radiate Metta to the entire Universe. This is the motivation and the mental direction for the practice.


I sincerely hope that you may find something that is helpful in Buddhism.

Quick Reply
Cancel
2 years ago  ::  Apr 22, 2012 - 4:59AM #30
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 834

Allen-UK


I would like to point out that I have a very small spiritual practice which only involves two people, my Guru and I.


We practice 'Unity in Diversity'.


This does not mean that we think that all religions are the same, nor do we try to assimilate all faiths into one doctrine or sutra.


We believe that all relgions reach the same, ineffable goal, and that ultimate reality can only be realised in silence, beyond words and langauges.


One thing that this website seems  to misunderstand is that to become Enlightend, one has to get in touch with one's inner child, of about 7 years of age. Pracite does  not begin with the understanding of what a Buddha is. It begins with an innate understanding that one requires spiritual guidance.


Rather than try to assimilate the wisdom of other faiths, we prefer to pratice them under qualified guidance in accordance with the Buddha's advice never to accept anything on hearsay. We prefer to make the correct spiritual supplications for initiations and permsissions to practice in accordance with the Second Precept of the Buddha:


"May we refrain from taking what has not been freely given".


And the First Precept:


"May we refrain from harming any living being [with Body, Speech, or Mind].


Green Tara Practice is available in the UK, at Kagyu Samye Ling:


www.samyeling.org/


www.nic.fi/~laan/praise.htm


At Kagyu Samye Ling, one may find qualified Buddhist Teachers and Practces. They have Shrines in England.

Quick Reply
Cancel
Page 3 of 8  •  Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 8 Next
 
    Viewing this thread :: 0 registered and 1 guest
    No registered users viewing
    Advertisement

    Beliefnet On Facebook