Buddhist Articles

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Most Venerable Master Hsing Yun

Founder of the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Order and Buddha’s Light International Association (BLIA) in Taiwan

Sacredness in Buddhism….

Buddha claimed that all living beings have the buddha-nature. By admitting that we are buddhas ourselves, we are elevating ourselves to the same status as that of the Buddha, holding the same True-Thusness. Is this not sacred? Is not your reliance on Buddha’s teaching on the Three Dharma Seals, Four Noble Truths, Twelve Links of Dependent Origination, Six Paramitas, the Bodhi Mind, and the Bodhisattva path also sacred? When each of us keeps faith that Humanistic Buddhism will bring harmony, family happiness, a positive mind, and liberation, is this also not sacred? Since Humanistic Buddhism is centered on human beings, the true Buddhist teachings shall carry the aim of finding ultimate happiness by relying on oneself, and the Dharma. Is this not sacred? By reaching out to society and serving the people, are not the great ideals and aspirations of ‘propagating the Dharma to benefit living beings’ and ‘to reach for Buddhahood and at the same deliver living beings’ sacred?. The sounds of the creeks are voices spoken by the Buddha’s broad and long tongue; the mountains are none but manifestations of Buddha’s pure body.’ The Buddha’s Dharma-body has become one with the universe. So where is he not found?” The Buddha is found within faith. 

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Most Venerable Sung Jin Thero

Executive Director of “Paramita” Youth Association of Korea and Vice President of the World Alliance of Buddhists (WAB)

The first step of emptying your mind is to fill it with the right view

The phase ‘emptying’ comes off as something as simple as pouring water out of a cup. But doing it with your mind, instead of plain water could make it the most difficult task in the world. The expression has a specific visual, but the content itself is psychological, and that could render the actual practice very abstract. Also, we are very self-centered, only used to holding onto something we want or like and not very familiar with letting things go. Consequently, there’s a tendency to perceive ‘emptying one’s mind’ as passive and trivial.  One of the most popular sutras in Mahayana tradition is Diamond Sutra. It is a very important Sutra to understand and practice what Middle Path (Madhyamapratipad) is and Seon Buddhism. There is a phrase that goes as below:“A disciple should give rise a mind which is no way dependent upon sights, sounds, smells, tastes, sensory sensations or any mental conception. A disciple should give rise to a mind which does not attach to anything.” – Diamond Sutra: Chapter 10 This is the phrase that I place the most importance in the Sutra and also the part which lay people have the most difficulty understanding. 

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Most Venerable Dr. Galle Udita Maha Nayake Thero

“Sihapura Sanghapati”, The Chief Sangha Nayake of Singapore, Senior Religious Adviser of Buddha Vihara Society, Singapore

Offering Kathina robes

Offering of Kathina robes is done in the period between full moon day of October and the full moon day of November. Many Buddhists do their duties during the retreats of monks in spite of difficulties that they face. Those duties actually are called meritorious deeds or Punnya Kamma in Pali language. The Pali poem that I have quoted from Dhammapada deals with the importance of doing meritorious deeds. It says that the man must do meritorious deeds again and again, not only that he has to do them regularly but he must also have some enthusiasm, the interest or eager to do them because accumulation of merit is able to yield happiness according to the Buddha. Merit in English is the feature that deserves praise but Punya is the good deed that is beneficial to oneself and others and also the deeds that are done in the absence of attachment, anger and illusion. The opposite of Punnya is the Apunya in Pali language. All immoral deeds such as killing, stealing and sexual misconduct are based on three immoral roots namely attachment, anger and illusion. Respectively they are Lobha, Dosa and Moha in Pali. Mind is the prime cause of all verbal physical and mental deeds. Those bad actions produce nothing but sufferings in the hell, animal world, spirit world and the world of demons. 

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