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3 years ago  ::  Aug 18, 2014 - 1:42AM #1
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 973


Gallery Photo


If a person claims to be able to Teach Buddhism, then it is not unreasonable to ask that person to demonstrate his or her ability to sit like the Buddha in the Lotus Position, since they are representing him when Teaching Dharma.


When I first began in Buddhism, I asked the person who was teaching me to sit in the Lotus Posture. He managed it without effort. Had he been unable to demonstrate this ability, I would have thanked him for his time, and then left the shrine room, never to return.


 


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3 years ago  ::  Aug 18, 2014 - 2:08AM #2
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 973

Metta Meditation



As I am not an academic scholar, I have been naturally drawn to the more religious aspects of Buddhism, which involve Love, Compassion and Faith. In the context of Buddhism, these things are associated with understanding rather than blind belief.


I am a Buddhist Householder, and in the Theravada Tradition, the Code of Practice for Householders is given in the Singala Sutta. This Sutta gives the Buddha's instruction of the way to acquire Wisdom from qualified sources:



www.thisismyanmar.com/nibbana/singala8.h...


SINGALA SUTTA


 (Discourse to Singala)


TEN SUTTAS FROM DIGHA NIKAYA


BURMA PITAKA ASSOCIATION


1984


272.  Young householder, in five ways should a man of good family minister to the samanas and brahmanas as the Zenith: by deeds of loving kindness; by words of loving kindness; by thoughts of loving kindness; by keeping the house open to them; by supplying them with material needs (such as alms-food).


 Young householder, the samanas and brahmanas, ministered to in these five ways as the Zenith by a man of good family, bring benefit to him in six ways: they restrain him from evil; they exhort him to do good; they protect him with loving kindness; they teach him (the profound matters) that he has not heard before; they explain and make clear to him (the profound matters) which he has heard before; they show him the path to the realm of the devas.


          Young householder, in these five ways a man of good family ministers to the samanas and the brahmanas as the Zenith and the samanas and the brahmanas also bring benefit to him in these six ways. It is thus that the Zenith is covered and made safe and secure.




In Buddhism, the Brahmana’s are the Arahants, the Holy Ones. The Buddha is an Arahant. As one may see from the Singala Sutta, offering 'thoughts of loving-kindness' to the brahmanas helps a person receive Teaching of the Dhamma from a qualified source.


If one offers Metta to the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Sangha with a sincere motivation [Sankalpa: Right Intention], then qualified teaching may be found, for this is the Dhamma and not the book club. Buddhism is a Living Faith, which can be accessed by anyone from anywhere in the world. The only requirement is a sincere desire to learn the Dhamma from a qualified source. The only qualification is a birth as a human being.


And when one meets with negative people, who put one down for their ignorance, know for certain that that person is neither a true Buddhist nor a qualified Teacher of Buddhism.


 Neither should a qualified Buddhist Precptor indulge in Logic-Mongering or Logic-Chopping, or Sutra-Bashing, Conceited Knowledge-bouncing, bouncing others by rebuking them for following loser-faiths.


Buddhism teaches its students a spiritual responsibility for studying other religions sincerely from sincere motivations, and that a true Buddhist ought to refrain from disparaging the Religions and Faiths of others.



www.thisismyanmar.com/nibbana/singala.ht...


Comments on Salient Points in the Singala Sutta


U Ko Lay


1985


The Buddha's repeated injunction to his followers was very simple and straightforward:


Abstain from all that is evil.


Develop and promote good deeds.


Purify the mind.


This is the Teaching of all the Budddhas.



 
 


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3 years ago  ::  Aug 25, 2014 - 4:22AM #3
Karma_yeshe_dorje
Posts: 14,245

Bhakta_glenn:


You discriminate against the disabled! At the forest monastery where I converted to Buddhism, the monk in charge used a chair. Saying that years of the more rigorous poses, had wrecked his knees!


Besides which, there are plenty of hatha yoga teachers. And some of those can demonstrate full lotus pose. While ignorant of the concept of meditation!


I tore the medial meniscus cartilage in my left knee. That was demonstrating lotus pose with insufficient warm-up. So now I will not attempt anything so dangerous!

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 26, 2014 - 4:09AM #4
Bhakta_glenn
Posts: 973

Aug 25, 2014 -- 4:22AM, Karma_yeshe_dorje wrote:


Bhakta_glenn:


You discriminate against the disabled! At the forest monastery where I converted to Buddhism, the monk in charge used a chair. Saying that years of the more rigorous poses, had wrecked his knees!


Besides which, there are plenty of hatha yoga teachers. And some of those can demonstrate full lotus pose. While ignorant of the concept of meditation!


I tore the medial meniscus cartilage in my left knee. That was demonstrating lotus pose with insufficient warm-up. So now I will not attempt anything so dangerous!




Karma_Yeshe_Dorje


Thank you for your post, for it has given me an opportunity practise Bhavana.



You discriminate against the disabled! At the forest monastery where I converted to Buddhism, the monk in charge used a chair. Saying that years of the more rigorous poses, had wrecked his knees!




I was born with an Inguinal Hernia. It became incarcerated in 1980, and I had to have an emergency operation to save my life. However, from a very young age, I have always been short of breath and not quite so strong as my peers. For example, at school in the gym, I could not climb the ropes and touch the ceiling, as everyone else could. The reason is that I did not have enough strength in my arms.


Physical exercises have always exhausted me quite quickly and for as long as I can remember, I have experienced a dull pain form the Hernia, even after the operation. I get a very painful sensation from my groing up to my throat. So for me to actually sit in the Lotus Posture is quite a big deal.


Back in 1990, I was looking for a person who had this ability. For I knew that it as an outer emblem of inner purity and healing. I just knew; for no-one told me.


en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inguinal_hernia


en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incarcerated_herni...


Disability


I am disabled, with an extent of 80%.


I am not responsible for the Monk you have referred to or your unfortunate experience with attempting to sit in Padmāsana before you were actually ready for that.


However, what I can tell you about the monk that you have referred to is this:


Having announced his inability to sit in the Lotus Posture, he would not teach me.


20 years ago, I found that the ability to sit in Padmāsana [Lotus Posture] arose quite naturally, without any effort. I discussed it with my Preceptor. She advised me to stop sitting like that. When I asked why she advised me that I was not yet ready for such an advanced sitting posture.


Last summer, 2012, I was asked to call in for a consultation about my Buddhist Meditation Training. She advised me that I could begin to practise sitting in Padmāsana, in this way:


1   Do not attempt to sit in Padmasnaa right at the beginning of practice. Do some preparatory exercises first, which may be physical or mental. For me, it is the actual process of taking refuge in the Triple Gem, the Five Precepts and Giving Metta that prepares me.


2   Begin with short periods of time for sitting in Padmāsana


3   Learn to sit comfortably in Padmāsana, and then increase the periods of time for sitting in Padmāsana.


4   Kill the Conceit and the Pride that would surface to prevent you from revising this procedure from time to time, and going back to the beginning. And starting again. For repetition of physical and mental activates bestows the gift of perfection upon a sincere Practioner.


5    The Goal of [your] endeavour to sit in Padmāsana is to become Perfect in the Art of Sitting in Padmāsana for it is the Quintessential Meditation Posture.


6    When you can sit in Padmāsana, then you can practice for the realisation of Samadhi and Vipassana, not before.


7       Criticism: [Quite often during the course of my Buddhist Training, I have met with severe criticism from other Buddhist Meditators]. Observe the other Buddhist Critic and qualify him. If he can sit n Padmāsana, refer him to your Preceptor, so that he may advise her of his criticism of her student. If he cannot sit in Padmāsana, then you seriously ought not to be discussing Dhamma with him.


Note, if a Buddhist student is assigned to a Teacher, then all criticism must be referred to that Preceptor.


Buddhism



Here is a picture of a qualified Buddhist Monk sitting in Padmasana, the Lotus Posture, just like the Buddha. And this is what that Meditation Posture symbolises


Posture Number 3, Top Picture.


www.thisismyanmar.com/nibbana/postures.h...


MEDITATION POSTURES

(Reference: 'Berkeley Discourse' by Tant Kyi Taung Sayadaw)
{short description of image}
Posture 3: Cross-legged and interlocked, hands on knees with palms down,
just like the Buddha statues; not for the beginners; to be used after some progress of Satipatthana Practice only.




In Theravada Buddhism, it is taught that the student has to develop MIndfulness in order to arrive at his destination on the Path: attainment of Enlightenment. Which, in a simple nutshell, means to have attained Bodhi:




www.budsas.org/ebud/bud-dict/dic3_b.htm

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

bodhi (from verbal root budhi, to awaken, to understand): awakenment, enlightenment, supreme knowledge. "(Through Bodhi) one awakens from the slumber or stupor (inflicted upon the mind) by the defilements (kilesa, q.v.) and comprehends the Four Noble Truths (sacca, q.v.)" (Com. to M. 10).





And this is what Bhakta_gelnn said in post #1



If a person claims to be able to Teach Buddhism, then it is not unreasonable to ask that person to demonstrate his or her ability to sit like the Buddha in the Lotus Position, since they are representing him when Teaching Dharma.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


 Sati and Satipaṭṭhāna


Mindfulness and the 4 Foundations of MIndfulness


www.budsas.org/ebud/bud-dict/dic3_s.htm

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

sati: 'mindfulness', is one of the 5 spiritual faculties and powers (s. bala), one of the 7 factors of enlightenment (bojjhaṅga, q.v.), and the 7th link of the 8-fold Path (magga, q.v.), and is, in its widest sense, one of those mental factors inseparably associated with all kammically wholesome (kusala, q.v.) and kamma-produced lofty (Sobhana) consciousness (Cf. Tab. II). - For the 4 foundations of mindfulness s. foll.

Satipaṭṭhāna: the 4 'foundations of mindfulness', lit. 'awarenesses of mindfulness' (sati-upaṭṭhāna), are: contemplation of body, feeling, mind and mind-objects. - For sati, s. prec.

A detailed treatment of this subject, so important for the practice of Buddhist mental culture, is given in the 2 Satipaṭṭhāna Suttas (D. 22; M. 10), which at the start as well as the conclusion, proclaim the weighty words: "The only way that leads to the attainment of purity, to the overcoming of sorrow and lamentation, to the end of pain and grief, to the entering of the right path, and to the realization of Nibbāna is the 4 foundations of mindfulness."




I began Buddhist Mental Training back in January 1990. To begin with, I practised at a Tibetan Buddhist Shrine. My first request was for the person teaching me to sit in Padmāsana, the Lotus Posture. He accomplished this with no visible effort. Without the use of his hands, he just assumed the posture, in a finger snap of time, and did not break from the Dharma Talk he was giving to me, on a one-to-one basis.


His breathing was calm, not affected by sharp intakes. Neither was his face contorted by pain.


From that positive response to my request, I had the information I required to request the Dharma from this person. I chose him to teach me.


Eight months later, I was assessed for Buddhist Practice by a senior Tibetan Lama. He arranged for me to transfer to a local Buddhist Monk who would develop my Buddhist Path for me.


When entering the Buddhist Vihara for the first time, I was taught by a Samanera: a Novice Monk. I did not have to make the same request for him to sit in Padmāsana. For he could not. He explained to me that he was under the qualified instruction of the Ariyasangha and was in training to sit in Padmāsana. Therefore, he gave me a practical demonstration of how this was being done. He would sit with only one leg lifted to the opposite thigh. He would sit like that for a while, and then change to the other leg.


When I first arrived to a Meditation class in the Shrine Room, with other people present, I was approached by a Buddhist 'wannabe'. This person had set himself up as the 'Man', a veritable 'Jack-the Lad' whom a newbie had to be instructed by, before being allowed to enter the class, A self-appointed 'Guardian-at-the Door'.


I simply advised this person that I had no need of his services for I was already trained in the basics. Since I had not requested the Dhamma from him, he had no right to insist that I be trained by him without my volition being involved.


For even if I had not been trained in the basics, I should have been afforded the right to attend a class and decide for myself whterh or not I thought that Buddhism was for me. It was not his decision to make. It was mine. And my position is this:


I want to practise the spiritual path that I have chosen. I am not remotely interested in the spiritual path that someone else would choose for me. Ths is free will.


To make an intellignet assessment of whether or not I would continue with this Buddhist School, I simply wanted to hear what it had to say for itself. And be rest assured, I am not interested in being told that a Religion can deliver me to Enlgihtenment whilst simultanously being advised that I must keep any attainments to myself. If Buddhism can Enlighten me then it must do three things for me:


1     Put its practice where its mouth is and show me the skills.


2     Demostrate the skills of the Teacher: Sitting in Padmasa will demonstrate these skills.


This is becase a qualified Buddhist Teacher should have developed some degree of maturity with this technique. Like the person at the Tibetan Shrine: Assume the Posture in a finger snap of time without any laboured breathing, facial wincing, or the use of hands.


The Buddha is the Teacher of the Theravada School and he is always shown sitting in Pamasana, the Lotus Posture.


3    Allow me to at least express verbally anything which I may or may not have achieved from its practice.


If I cannot satsify myslef with regard to these three things, then I woud not be interested.


Hatha Yoga


For an accurate understanding of what this actually is, may I suggest you read the English Translation of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika




sacred-texts.com/hin/hyp/hyp03.htm

THE HAṬHA YOGA PRADIPIKA.
हठ-योग-परदीपिका
haṭha-yogha-pradīpikā
CHAPTER 1.

On Âsanas.

[...]

Padmâsana.

Place the right foot on the left thigh and the left foot on the right thigh, and grasp the toes with the hands crossed over the back. Press the chin against the chest and gaze on the tip of the nose. This is called the Padmâsana, the destroyer of the diseases of the Yamîs. 46

Place the feet on the thighs, with the soles upwards, and place the hands on the thighs, with the palms upwards. 47

Gaze on the tip of the nose, keeping the tongue pressed against the root of the teeth of the upper jaw, and the chin against the chest, and raise the air up slowly, i.e., pull the apâna-vâyû gently upwards.

This is called the Padmâsana, the destroyer of all diseases. It is difficult of attainment by everybody, but can be learnt by intelligent people in this world.

[..]



Wisdom


There are a variety of yogic methods for attaining the skill of sitting in the Lotus Posture:


Bhakti-Yoga, the Yoga of Deveotional Service to God. In reality, this means helping others wh are less fortuanate than ourselves. Example: the Good Samaritan.


Nama Smarana, Name Remembrace: remembering a Divine or Sacred Name as an act of Devotion by chanting it repeateldy. Example: Hare Krishna Mantra


This Mantra will match anything taught in Buddhism.


Metta Meditation, when practised correctly under qualified supervision.


Any of he 40 Subject of Buddhist Samatha Meditation. A Samatha Meditation subject is given to a Buddhist student by a qualified Buddhist Precptor, in accordance with the student's temperament.


The Foundation for all of these methods is twofold:


1    Qualified Instruction.


2    Diligent Practice


3    Moral Education.


And finally, if it is painful, then do not do it.


May all beings live iin peace and harmony,


May all beings be happy


Smile

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 26, 2014 - 6:04AM #5
Karma_yeshe_dorje
Posts: 14,245

Dear Bhakta_glenn:


How could anyone not be grateful, having been so rescued from death? For me, the life-saving operation was for the removal of the gangrenous appendix!


Indeed, the annoying attentions of pompous officials are clearly observable to me. And when such characters have also been obviously ignorant, the pain has been palpable for me!


I am indeed aware of the value of gesture (mudra) in development of attitude.


I agree with the recommendation of preparation.


Officially I am more (totally) disabled than you. And the messes of interpersonal strife that I repeatedly get into, remind me of difficulties that I continually experience.


I caution, however, against developing conceit from attainment.


And reflecting upon this afternoon's art class, I am reminded of the severely handicapped people around me. Where one was a stroke survivor, another was depressed, and yet a third was intellectually handicapped. To say that only the athletic may pass through the door, would seem to me unnecessarily exclusive. For each could exert effort in their own way, and so obtain some benefit.

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 27, 2014 - 11:04AM #6
Karma_yeshe_dorje
Posts: 14,245

Bhakta_glenn:


Would you find me something on the topic of disability. I am thinking here of the suffering of sickness.

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