Monday, February 29, 2016

The Living Journal – Lending Your Hands To Inspiring Others

We have two hands
One is to help yourself
The second is to help others

“Love is not patronizing and charity isn’t about pity, it is about love. Charity and love are the same — with charity you give love, so don’t just give money but reach out your hands instead”- Mother Teresa, A Simple Path.

Samsara is the whole round of existence, Samsara with its miseries, is the true cause of suffering. To Samsara belongs everything which proceeds from a chain of other causes and which is thus involved in Karma and delusion.

Its essential nature is misery; its function is to provide a basis for the spread of misery and by nature to attract miseries for the future. I believe in helping others. Whether it is something big or small, I think that one simple act of kindness can make a huge impact.
Life is not to be being happy alone. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, and to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well, an important part of living a blissful and fulfilling life includes being part of a caring community where you can share, help and support people you care about. It also includes being kind to strangers, and learning to replace envy and anger with understanding and empathy.


Frequently I have heard people complain about not being able to help the community because they want to live comfortably. I believe that it is possible to help those around you without sacrificing everything and barely living hand to mouth. I think it is important to donate your time, effort, and energy to improving your community and by contributing and practicing generosity to the needy if you can.

It’s easy to get so wrapped up in fixing your own life that you forget about helping others. And while it’s important to put yourself first sometimes, it’s even more important to help others whenever you can. Being generous isn’t even always about altruism – becoming more generous and compassionate will have real tangible benefits in your own life, according to the Buddha teachings of Six Paramitas.

The basic of Six Paramitas. (To be discussed separately)
Paramita is a Sanskrit word and in Tibetan words the six Paramitas, is “phar-phying-drug” it’s literally means Perfection or completeness. It’s also known as the 六度般若波羅蜜 in Mahayana traditions. In Buddhism, these virtues are cultivated as a way of purification of karma and helping the disciples to live an unobstructed life, while reaching the goal of enlightenment.

1. Generosity.
2. Virtue, morality, ethics conduct.
3. Patience, tolerance, forgiveness, acceptance, endurance.
4. Diligence, vigor, joyful endeavour.
5. One point concentration, meditative concentration.
6. Wisdom.
Generosity is the top priority of the six Paramitas, to practice of generosity is to give what is helpful and good and to give without selfishness. There are three ways to be moderate and generous and it is necessary to abandon improper giving and to know what is proper to give.

1) Giving material things,
2) Giving loving protection,
3) Giving loving understanding.

It certainly is not beneficial to indulge those persons crazed with desire and filled with greed. Furthermore, an appropriate generosity is giving whatever one possibly can and doing so with a pure motivation and enthusiasm. There is an inspiring story about the previous life of Buddha when He was a great Bodhisattvas who even gave their own flesh to feed animals that were on the verge of starving to death. 

One’s motivation is very important when one is charitable. It is inappropriate to give something to someone with the intention to harm, or with the intention to become famed, or out of fear of impending poverty. It is also necessary to consider what one gives. Our pure motivation is should never give anything that can hurt others and should never give anything that is helpful with wicked thoughts in mind. It is also important to reflect the recipient of one’s generosity.
Over the years, I have a small group of 10 Dharma volunteers reaching out in many places, but mostly at hospitals in the special care unit for homeless ailing * HIV patients, including the Hiv positive children that abandoned by their parents. But what most important is people who are infected with diseases need care and support from their friends, families and the community, especially when they are ill without their love ones to take care and showing love, respect and support them. 

Public discrimination is one of the main caused of these Hiv patients are committing suicide at a far higher rate than the general population, and at a higher rate even than among people with other fatal disease.

*Hiv is now a chronic infectious disease and treatable medical condition and most treated people remain fit and well.
If you judge people, you have no time to love them 
– By Mother Teresa.

Would you give others another chance to live?  Yes I would and would you?

The basic of Six Paramitas will be posting separately.

Thank you for reading, may you find peace and great bliss. With your support it helps to spread the precious Buddha’s precious Dharma and turning the Dharma wheels in the world.

Aspiration For Bodhichitta
For those in whom the precious bodhichitta has not arisen
May it arise and not decrease
But increase further and further.

Nagarjuna's Dedication of Merit
By this merit may we obtain omniscience then.
Having defeated the enemies wrong-doings.
May we liberate migrators from the ocean of existence.
With its stormy waves of birth, old age, sickness and death.

*Note
I do not own or infringe any copyright of these pictures.
Pictures courtesy and credit to the rightful owners.

Friday, February 26, 2016

The Wheel of The Existence

The Living Journal – The Wheel of the existence.
(For general introduction only)
Samsara is the whole round of existence, Samsara with its miseries, is the true cause of suffering. To Samsara belongs everything which proceeds from a chain of other causes and which is thus involved in Karma and delusion.

Its essential nature is misery; its function is to provide a basis for the spread of misery and by nature to attract miseries for the future.

Samsara is divided into three worlds:-
1] The world of the senses - Beings in these worlds enjoy external sensual pleasure.

2] The world of the form – Beings can not enjoy external sensual pleasures but with the capability enjoy the undisturbed pleasure of internal contemplation.
 
3] The world of the formless – Beings in these worlds, the objects of the five senses do not exist, nor the five sensual organs with which we enjoy. There is only a bare mind or consciousness that devoid of distractions and beings exists and dwells entirely in a state of equanimity.
Samsara may also be divided according to the nature of the beings it contains and by this system, known as the Wheel of life of the six realms. Buddhist cosmology typically identifies six realms of existence, The Wheel of six realms or the Karmic Destinations, which is known as the cyclic of existence. 

Cyclic of existence is beginingless which means that each being has lived countless lifetimes and as such, there is no being that has not been our mother or father at one existence or another. 

Buddhism therefore teaches that every being is in fact a kind mother being who has, in the past, shown great love, kindness and protection to each one of us and that we should in turn be ready to repay them with similar acts of kindness. 

This is a very important aspect of Buddhist practice that will help one to develop loving compassion and this is why the first precepts of Buddhism is refrain from KILLING.
The Law of the twelve stages of causes or dependent
The law is also known as the law of Dependant origination or the Wheel of Life and is a discourse on the process of birth and death. It deals with the causes of rebirth and suffering with the view of helping mankind to get rid of their ills of life. It is not an attempt to solve the riddle of an absolute origin of life. It merely explains the “simple happening of a state, dependent on its antecedent state.

Ignorance of the truth of suffering, its cause, its end and the way to its end, is the main cause that set the Wheel of the six realms in motion. The Buddha said; ignorance is the deep delusion wherein we here so long are circling round.

The twelve Causes and their interdependent relationship are as follows:-
1] Ignorance
2] Action
3] Consciousness
4] Form and existence
5] The senses
6] Contact –Love Making
7] Sensation
8] Craving
9] Grasping
10] Existence
11] Rebirth
12] Old age and death
The Wheel of the six realms
1] The God or The Devas realms.
2] The Asura the Demi–Gods or Titan realms. 
3] The Human realm.
4] The Animal realms
5] The Preta – gati or Hungry Ghost realms
6] The Hell realms.  
1] The God realms - Include beings in the realm of celestial form and celestial formless, and  are the happiest realm as those beings who dwell there are enjoying with great power, wealth and long life. They are enjoying with continual pleasure and sensual delight, mitigated only by the fact that they too must eventually grow old and die and pass on to the other states once their karmic forces end or die out. Those beings born into the god realms are mainly due to one having lived virtuously and generously towards others.
2] The Asura the Demi–God or Titan realms - Is populated by “jealous gods” who should be as happy as the celestial beings, but their minds are clouded with anger and envy over the better fortunes of the god realm. Take a closer look at the picture of the Wheel of the six realms, there is a tree growing from the realm of the Asura to the realms of the Gods.

This is a “wish-fulfilling” tree whose fruits and flowers can fulfill every desire which the Asura or the Demi-Gods they are unable to get hold of. This causes them great frustration, anger and jealousy and therefore constantly wage against the Gods and try to claim the fruits of their tree. 

However they are always defeated because the Gods are farmore powerful due to their karmic legacy. Despite being a heavenly realm the Asuras live in a great suffering due to the delusion of anger and jealousy. The male Asura suffering is further increased by being born with a monstrous looks while the female Asura are born exquisitely beautiful and the female Asura only yearn for the love of the handsome Gods and rejecting their own kind.
3] The Human realm - Is where we are, it is filled with the up and downs of life, and we should be grateful for this conditions to be around. These bring about the awareness of the bliss of happiness and the misery of suffering and therefore become the way causes that lead to a spiritual practice.

It is the most fortunate realm to take rebirth into the world where one is able to listen to the Dharma and practice it to attain enlightenment. In the God realms the Gods are far too happily engrossed with their pleasures to bother about further cultivation while the Asura realms are too much affected by anger, jealousy and dissatisfactions of their existence. 

The Human Realm is the only realm of the six from which beings may escape samsara. Enlightenment is at hand in the Human Realm, yet only a few open their eyes and sees it. Rebirth into the Human Realm is conditioned by passion, doubt and desire.


4] The Animal realms – Born due to the result of their willful ignorance and are therefore unable to derive any benefit from the Dharma. Animals live only by instinct and must face daily reality of searching for food or mate and killing or be killed
5] The Hungry Ghost realms – The living spirits born here due to there are associated with addiction, obsession and compulsion. Who are afflicted constantly with the miseries of hunger and thirst. These beings with huge, empty stomachs, but they have pinhole mouths, and their necks are so thin they cannot swallow any food or water.
6] The Hell realmsAs the name suggests, the Hell realm is the most terrible of the Six Realms. Hell beings have a short fuse; everything makes them angry. And the only way hell beings deal with things that make them angry is through aggression, violence. There are many different regions of hell, and the living beings in each of them also vary in nature, accordingly to their past Karma. Hell living beings only await the exhaustion of their karma to end their indescribable sufferings.
In the center of the Wheel of the six realms is seeing there are Three Animals which signifies the three poisons or three root causes of the suffering existence as follows:-

1] The rooster represents the passionate desire and attachment.
2] The snake represents hatred, enmity and aversion.
3] The boar represents the darkness of ignorance,ego & delusion.
Buddha 
In the top right corner, Buddha is showing the way. He is outside the Wheel of the six realms and to demonstrate that Buddha has escaped the cycle of life and death. Buddha is pointing to the Yama and the Wheel to instruct his followers the true nature of existence. 

The above explanation of the Wheel of the six realms helps us to understand clearly that our existence and sufferings are the result of the cause and effect and conditions which are without beginning of birth, death and rebirth. This Wheel of the six realms is a unique and superb representation of Samsara, the world of birth and death, it included all kind of living beings exist are classified into six types.
Mara is the king of the death and demons
The frightening figure holding the wheel of life is held between the jaws of the King the Demons, The Mara or Yama. Yama is the Lord of Death or Monster of Impermanence. He has three eyes and wears a crown of skulls.

W
ho always attempts to rule the mind of mankind and holding all living beings in a state of delusion.  Yama symbolises the impermanence of everything. The beings, he holds are trapped in eternal suffering by their ignorance of the nature of the universe. Buddhism teaches that death is not the end and is not to be feared. 

* Footnote *
Please consult your Guru or a qualified lineage master for Vajrayana practice! Should a devotee even want to start studying and contemplating the Vajrayana practice, then it is truly necessary to first have completed the preliminaries and to be certain and sure that bodhicitta has arisen and developed in one’s mind.

Vajrayana features countless skillful and powerful methods which, if they are practiced in the proper way, can make the process of accumulation and purification incredibly swift and direct. It is absolutely necessary to have the pure motivation and to know that Vajrayana practice is not carried out to increase one’s own power, ego and benefit.

Thank you for reading, may you find peace and great bliss. With your support it helps to spread the precious Buddha’s precious Dharma and turning the Dharma wheels in the world.

Aspiration For Bodhichitta
For those in whom the precious bodhichitta has not arisen
May it arise and not decrease
But increase further and further.

Nagarjuna's Dedication of Merit
By this merit may we obtain omniscience then.
Having defeated the enemies wrong-doings.
May we liberate migrators from the ocean of existence.
With its stormy waves of birth, old age, sickness and death.

*Note
I do not own or infringe any copyright of these pictures.
Pictures courtesy and credit to the rightful owners.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

The Twelve Sacred Vows



TADYATA OM BHEKHANDZYE BHEKHANDZYE 
MAHA BHEKHANDZYE
RADZA SAMUDGATE SVAHA
Buddha Shakyamuni gave the Medicine Buddha teachings at the perfect moment and at the perfect place – Vaishali, India. Buddha Shakyamuni presented the teaching that would be preserved as the Sutra of the Medicine Buddha. This teaching became very prominent in India and came to Tibet in the eighth century. 

Master Shantarakshita, who was known for the beautiful praises and sadhanas that he composed for all the Medicine Buddhas, first introduced the Medicine Buddha teaching in Tibet. His teachings on the Medicine Buddha have been passed down in an unbroken lineage. The Medicine Buddha practices are important in all schools of Tibetan Buddhism.
According to Buddha Shakyamuni’s teachings, there are seven other emanations of the Medicine Buddha, each with his own color and pure land. Sangye Menla, the Medicine Buddha is blue and dwells in pleasing upon seeing. These various Medicine Buddha emanations are of various colors, such as gold, yellow, pink, red, and blue.

Medicine Buddha (Sangye Menla in Tibetan) the manifestation of the healing energy of all Buddhas. He wears monastic robes and sits on a lion throne. The color of his body is dark blue and His left hand holds a bowl filled with nectar and another hand holds a stem of Arura.

By reciting his holy mantra it is a very powerful method and increasing healing powers for oneself and others, but also for overcoming the inner sickness of attachment, hatred, ignorance and the purification of negative physical and mental karma. Thus to meditate on the Medicine Buddha can help decrease physical and mental illness and suffering. 

If we can recite Medicine Buddha mantra every day and is good to do at least 5 malas, this will purify negative karma and will help you never to be reborn in the lower realms. According to Medicine Buddha sutra that even if an animal hears the Medicine Buddha mantra it will never be reborn in the lower realms.

If we don’t purify negative karma, when dying because of negative karma that not been purified, so we will be reborn in the lower realms as a hell being, hungry ghost or animal, and repeatedly without end. We need to purify the negative karma now. If you cannot bear the sickness now, how can we bear the suffering of the lower realms?
Medicine Buddha mantra prevents us from experiencing these related suffering, it is more precious than gold, diamonds or wish-fulfilling jewels all this wealth means nothing because it can’t purify all the negative karma. 

Medicine Buddha mantra is precious because it leaves imprints of the whole path to enlightenment in your mind; it helps you to have realizations of the enlightenment. 

Medicine Buddha mantra is extremely powerful for healing physical illnesses and purification of negative actions and karma. It ceases all the gross and subtle defilements and makes you achieve enlightenment. Besides the benefits you receive from reciting Medicine Buddha mantra and also these are the benefits just from hearing the mantra. 

The Twelve Sacred Vows of the Medicine Buddha upon attaining Enlightenment, according to the Medicine Buddha Sutra:-

1] To illuminate countless realms with his radiance, enabling anyone to become a Buddha just like him. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

2] May all sentient beings born in my Eastern Lapis Lazuli Pure Land radiate glowing light – a light that dispels all dwelling in darkness. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

3] Whoever is born in that Eastern Lapis Lazuli Pure Land, may they always enjoy material abundance and be free of all worldly concerns. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

4] May the beings in that Eastern Lapis Lazuli Pure Land possess a stable vision of the pure view. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.
5] May those born in my Eastern Lapis Lazuli Pure Land pay utmost attention to the purity of their conduct. May the results of negative karma due to previous actions be deferred to the time of most benefit to spiritual growth. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

6] May they all emanate health and growth in body and mind. May they be relieved of any discomfort or disorder that hinders spiritual growth. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

7] May my name become a mantra that heals all ailments. May the sound of my name and the image of my nirmanakaya be a balm that eases all pain. May the sound of my name or visualization of my image cure physical troubles and sickness. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

8] May those women who are undergoing sufferings and tortures and seeking and wish for transformation of their gentle into men have their wishes be fulfilled in the next next rebirth. May that choice lead directly to enlightenment. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

9] May those who hold wrong views or beliefs regarding Dharma immediately develop right view when they hear my name. As a result, may they engage in Bodhisattva activities. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

10] May those who live in fear and are easily controlled, who feel threatened with incarceration and punishment, leave behind their fears of catastrophe. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

11] May those whose subsistence has depended on predation and the killing of other beings have all their material needs met upon hearing my name. May their freedom result in the recognition of their innate Bodhisattva nature. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment.

12] Upon hearing my name, may those who suffer from any kind of hunger, thirst, or cold have all their needs provided for. May their food, drink, and clothing free them from mundane concerns so that they may begin to benefit others. If this does not come to pass, may I not reach enlightenment. 

The Twelve Spiritual General Yaksha Protectors with having its owned seven thousands of Yakshas in their retinue swear to Buddha Shakyamuni’s that they shall have recourse to Buddhist Trinity to bear the responsibility to let all beings be benefited by the path of truth and let one who peaches and recite the Medicine Buddha mantra or Sadhara to have abundance with happiness.

Wherever it maybe, be it in the villages, cities, capitals or in isolated place or forests, when one who peaches the Sutra or Sadhara , mantra and cherishes the name of the Medicine Buddha, reverence and makes offering to Medicine Buddha, the twelve spiritual general Yakshas and their retinues shall safeguard and protect the disciples, deliver them completely from all distress and fulfill all wishes.
The Twelve Heavenly General Protectors of Medicine Buddha

1.   General Kumbhira.
2.   General Vajra.
3.   General Mihira.
4.   General Andira.
5.   General Majira.
6.   General Shandira.
7.   General Indra.
8.   General Pajra.
9.   General Makura.
10. General Sindura.
11. General Catura.
12. General Vikarala.  

After the great Medicine Buddha made these Bodhisattva vows, he kept these promises throughout all his lifetimes as a Bodhisattva. When we practice the Medicine Buddha, we should remember these commitments and aspire to do the same, for the sake of all living beings. If we do this with love, compassion, and bodhichitta, it will benefit us and all other living beings.

Thank you for reading, may you find peace and great bliss. With your support it helps to spread the Buddha’s precious teachings and turning the Dharma wheels in the world.

Aspiration For Bodhichitta
For those in whom the precious bodhichitta has not arisen
May it arise and not decrease
But increase further and further.

Nagarjuna's Dedication of Merit
By this merit may we obtain omniscience then.
Having defeated the enemies wrong-doings.
May we liberate migrators from the ocean of existence.
With its stormy waves of birth, old age, sickness and death.

*Note
I do not own or infringe any copyright of these pictures.
Pictures courtesy and credit to the rightful owners.