Saturday, June 21, 2014

The 4 Brahmavihâras deliver mind to a Higher State!


The Blessed Buddha once said:
The Noble Disciple, Bhikkhus and friends, who is freed from greed and grudge,
unconfused, alert, attentive and clearly comprehending, with mind filled up by
kind friendliness ..., by compassionate pity ..., by altruistic joy ... and finally by
imperturbable equanimity, pervades first one direction, then the 2nd, the 3rd,
and then the 4th one, and just as above, so also below, across and all around!
Thus sympathetic with all beings, embracing all living, he pervades the whole world,
and the entire universe with a vast mind, refined, infinite, freed from all hate and
any ill-will. And he understands: Formerly my mind was limited and undeveloped...
Now, however, is my mind unlimited and developed, and no limited behaviour based
on a narrow, restricted intention, favourizing this, while rejecting that, will remain!
What do you think, Bhikkhus and friends: If a boy from his early childhood develops
kind friendliness, compassionate pity, altruistic joy, and imperturbable equanimity,
will he then still be able to do bad, evil or wrong deeds? No, Venerable One...
But, if he no longer does bad, or wrong deeds, will suffering then still attack him?
Certainly not. Venerable One..
How should anyone, who is doing no evil actions, ever still be attacked by suffering!
Therefore should kind friendliness .. compassionate pity .. altruistic joy and subtle
imperturbable equanimity be developed, by all men, women and conscious beings!
No man, or woman, on leaving this life, can keep this body. Any mortal has only his
mind as base, foundation, essence, mediator, creator, controller and protector!
The Bhikkhu, however, knows: Whatever formerly I have done of bad deeds with
this material body, all that I still have to atone for here, and after that, then nothing
of it will follow me. So developed, the release of the mind by kind friendliness,
by compassionate pity, by altruistic joy ... and by imperturbable equanimity,
leads to Never-Return, unless the wise monk already during this life penetrates
to a higher deliverance than that!
Source: The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha. Anguttara Nikāya 10:208

More on the 3rd Noble State: Non-Return (Anāgāmi)

Video on Mettā  Meditation on Friendliness:
How to cure Depression?

The Higher Deliverance!
Have a nice & noble day!
Friendship is the Greatest! Bhikkhu Samāhita _/\_ ]

Blaming the Mirror..

The folly of Blaming, Accusing and Condemning:
Please note that when one points the accusing and blaming finger at another saying
"you did this wrong": Then ONE -1- finger points to him/her - the alleged offender,
BUT 3 -THREE - fingers points back at the accuser, the blamer, the finger-pointer!
Why so?
This blaming finger-pointer unknowingly him/herself does the whole of 3 wrongs:
1: Blaming = not forgiving,
2: Not Understanding Cause = ignorance,
3: Wanting to Punish = hate, cruelty and revengefulness!
Blaming, accusing and condemning won't and can’t ever help anybody with anything…
Why not? It simply does neither know, nor thus remove the cause of the problem…
Only understanding can and will remove this crucial underlying cause of the problem!
Why so: It knows and sees the impersonal roots of the problem, which always are
mixed derivatives of ignorance, greed and hate! This knowing and seeing enables total
elimination of this core cause and therefore the resulting problem: Thus is examining
leading to understanding much better than blaming! Understanding is the Chief!


Have a nice & noble day!
Friendship is the Greatest! Bhikkhu Samāhita _/\_ ]

First Disillusion, then Delight...

Disillusion => Ceasing => Bliss => Nibbâna!

The Blessed Buddha once said:
Bhikkhus, when the Four Foundations of Awareness are developed and
cultivated well, then they lead to revulsion, to disillusion, to ceasing,
to peace, to direct knowledge, to enlightenment, to Nibbāna itself...
What four? When an honest and devoted Bhikkhu keenly considers:
1: The Body just as frame, and neither as lasting, mine, nor attractive...
2: The Feeling as reaction, and neither as pleasant, my self, or stable...
3: The Mind merely as mood and neither as fine, I or Ego, or special...
4: Phenomena as states, and neither as nice, permanent, or substantial...
When the Four Foundations of Awareness are developed and trained well,
then they lead to revulsion, to disillusion, to ceasing, to stilling, to peace,
to direct knowledge, to enlightenment, and even to Nibbāna!

Brief Comments:
Disillusion means comprehending impermanence, suffering, and no-self.
Ceasing means the gradual fading away of greed, aversion and ignorance.
Peace means absence of urge, craving, frustration and stirring activity.
Bliss means absence of pain and sadness, and presence of Happiness.
Nibbāna  means signless, not created, not conditioned, and not changing!

Details On Foundations of Awareness (Sati):

Source of reference (edited extract):
The Grouped Sayings of the Buddha. Samyutta Nikāya.
Book [V: 179] 47 The Foundations of Awareness: 32 Disillusion..

Have a nice & noble day!
Friendship is the Greatest! Bhikkhu Samāhita _/\_ ]

White-Clothed Purity ...

Immaculately Clean Pure Bright White!
All Lay Buddhist do on suitable occasions, such as on the observance days,
wear an
All White Dress to flag their stand, show their purity and unite in an
well ordered, yet open, directly visible and sweetly uniformed social harmony….
It is a quite good lesson in Awareness = Sati to keep this fragile white dress
spotlessly clean! On has to be continuously on the watch-out for any pollution. 
It is associated with a very nice special worthy feeling of being Completely Pure!

The famous Visuddhimagga: The Path of Purification:
Complete Manual translated by Ñanamoli Thera. By Bhadantacariya Buddhaghosa:

Have a nice & noble day!
Friendship is the Greatest! Bhikkhu Samāhita _/\_ ]

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Can Buddhists Be Activists?

by David P. Barash, HNN, Jan 26, 2014

Washington, USA -- Buddhism is widely seen as quietistic, self-involved, and concerned only with personal enlightenment and the achievement of inner peace.
There is some truth to this characterization (especially when applied to the earliest manifestation of Buddhism), just as many scientists are concerned only with their science, refusing to become involved in messy questions of politics or policy. However, "engaged Buddhism" has grown dramatically, especially since the Vietnam War, just as environmental scientists generally have become more politically active, notably since the first Earth Day in 1970.
There is a strong case to be made that the Buddha and his original followers and early intellectual/spiritual descendants were primarily concerned with individual enlightenment and helping people transcend their own, personal dukkha (“suffering,” or “disappointment”). At the same time, there is a powerful trend within what has been called “Buddhist modernism” or – a phrase I prefer, “engaged Buddhism” - that takes the basic teachings of Buddhism and derives from them a potent recipe for involvement in the world, typically on behalf of the natural environment and oppressed people.
There is a story – perhaps apocryphal – in which the American avant-garde music theorist and composer, John Cage, had been asked by his friend, the abstract expressionist artist Robert Rauschenberg, whether he thought that there was too much suffering in the world. “No,” Cage supposedly replied, “I think there's just the right amount.” I must confess to a substantial helping (perhaps more than the Buddhistically appropriate “right amount”) of anger at this statement on the part of the Zen-influenced Mr. Cage. Mr. Cage was aligning himself with the Buddhist concept of “balance”; fair enough. My fear, however, is that too much balance of this sort leads to a kind of suffocating equanimity that risks degenerating into self-satisfied inaction in the face of pain and suffering.Ifar prefer the story told by anthropologist/essayist Loren Eiseley, subsequently rewritten in various ways. Someone is walking along a beach that is littered with exposed starfish who are dying in the low tide. He sees a young woman who carefully picks one up and flings it into the ocean. “Young lady,” says the observer, “don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach, and starfish everywhere? You can’t possibly make a difference.” She listened politely, then picked up another, and tossed it into the water, saying “It made a difference to this one.”
To be sure, you don’t have to be Buddhist to agree with these sentiments. It is probably no coincidence, however, that the three best known modern Buddhists are also renowned as activists and political dissidents: ThichNhat Hanh (who settled in France, having become persona non grata in his native Vietnam for his passionate opposition to both sides during the Vietnam War), the Dalai Lama (in exile in India, having fled Tibet after the Chinese takeover) and Aung San Su Kyi (another Nobel Peace Prize winner, who lived for decades under house arrest in Burma for her embrace of democracy). Engaged Buddhism espouses many different social and political issues, nearly all of them left-leaning: Environmental protection, opposition to rampant consumerism, support for pacifism or at least anti-militarism and anti-war generally, social justice, etc. There have been exceptions, notably the enthusiasm on the part of Japanese Zen masters for that country’s prosecution of World War II. By and large, however, the convergence of engaged Buddhism with progressive – sometimes radical – politics has been almost as thorough as its convergence with biology, something I explore in my most recent book. And this, in turn, is likely due to the deep Buddhist focus on interconnectedness, which corresponds nicely to a similar concern – largely at the societal level – on the part of secular progressives.
Consider, for example, the comment by severely conservative (and distinctly unBuddhist) British prime minister Margaret Thatcher that “there is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families. And no government can do anything except through people, and people must look to themselves first.”
By the same token, there is no way that Ayn Rand, patron saint of right-wing individualism and apostle of selfishness, could ever have been mistaken for a Buddhist. Political liberals, progressives, and socialists, by contrast, embrace the role of a caring, connected and interdependent society as paramount, and with it, a commitment to social responsibility. Thich Nhat Hanh’s is deeply engaged on behalf of social and environmental betterment, while that of the Dalai Lama is legendary. For the American Joan Halifax, who has long been deeply involved in providing hospice and other healing services in developing countries such as India, the Buddhist approach is about “radical intimacy with the world,” which results in a “life grounded in kindness, compassion, wisdom and skillful means.” It is not simply a semantic game to point out that the Buddhist goal of becoming aware of one’s “selflessness” corresponds to the need for less “selfishness” in our behavior toward each other and toward our environment.
For some people, “engaged Buddhism” is nonetheless an oxymoron, along with “environmentally sensitive Christianity,” since each requires a departure from its earliest traditions. In the case of Buddhism, however, the stretch isn’t nearly as great, since part of the Buddha’s enlightenment is said to have involved acknowledging the importance of the material world. Moreover, in its earliest texts (the so-called “Pali canon”) Buddhist doctrine includes numerous admonitions that followers should treat nature – plants, animals, rivers, mountains, even deserts and rocks – with respect and even love; i.e., with ahimsa.
Nonetheless, according to originalist Buddhism, one should see through the various passionate clingings and cravings in which we and all other living things are entangled and that produce so much suffering, to transcend avid welcoming of and yearning for the things of this world, and similarly, to avoid fervent hatreds thereof, to renounce sensual pleasures and to achieve liberation from and non-attachment to the troublesome “realities” of existence. This is almost the precise opposite of engagement, as represented by not only the work of the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh, but also a number of Western masters such as Joanna Macy and Robert Aitken.
Buddhist engagement nonetheless has a lengthy and noble history as well. The 8th century Indian scholar and philosopher Santideva provides us with perhaps the earliest clear statement of deriving ethical precepts from the key Buddhist teaching of interdependence: “Just as the body, which has many parts owing to its division into arms and so forth, should be protected as a whole, so should this entire world, which is differentiated and yet has the nature of the same suffering and happiness.”
Although it can certainly be argued that the Buddha’s original teaching was concerned not so much with helping us feel more connected, but rather, less, for our purposes, this misses the point. I – and I assume, most readers of this wesbite – are less interested in unearthing the “true” and “original” teaching of the Buddha (or of anyone else), than in gaining wisdom wherever it can be found. And there is no reason to think that such wisdom is more present in truly “authentic” teachings, when such authenticity is simply a function of antiquity. Interestingly, there do not appear to be any words in Pali or Sanskrit (the two foundational languages for early Buddhist writings) that employ the word “nature” in anything approaching its modern, English usage. So we need to be careful in describing Buddhism as inherently bio-friendly or even other-friendly. Nonetheless, deep appreciation of the natural world is prominent throughout Buddhist teaching, ancient as well as recent. And according to legend, the feeling was mutual.
Thus, we are told that when the Buddha gained enlightenment, sitting under a bodhi tree, he was challenged by the evil god Mara, who demanded to know by what authority he was proceeding. To this, the Buddha responded by touching the ground. And, we are told, the earth roared its approval.
David P. Barash is an evolutionary biologist, long-time Buddhist and professor of psychology at the University of Washington, whose most recent book is Buddhist Biology: Ancient Eastern Wisdom Meets Modern Western Science, just published by Oxford University Press.
- See more at:


International Day of Vesak celebrated at the United Nations

The Buddhist Channel, May 29, 2014

United Nations -- The United Nations (UN) in New York commemorated the International Day of Vesak in accordance with General Assembly Resolution 54/115 at a well-attended ceremony held in the Trusteeship Council in the UN Conference Building on the 13th May, 2014.
This year, Ambassador Norachit Sinhaseni of the Kingdom of Thailand chaired the commemoration. The gathering was addressed by the President of the General Assembly, H.E. Dr. John Ashe, and the High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), H.E. Mr. Nassir Al Nasser, representing H.E. Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations.
Dr. Ashe, in his speech highlighted Buddhism to be timeless; “The message of the Buddha stands today as unaffected by time and the expansion of knowledge as when it was first enunciated”. To be Open; “Buddhism appeals to reason and freedom of thought, recognizing the inherent dignity of the human person and the human mind. It calls for equality and understanding, and its teachings and practices are equally accessible to all regardless of country, color, creed or gender”. And only religion to remain scientifically sound; quoting Albert Einstein, “If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs it would be Buddhism.”
Mr. Nasser in his remarks highlighted the “affinity between Buddha’s message and the UNAOC’s principles enhancing and fostering stability, prosperity and peaceful coexistence”.
The Secretary General, in his statement said that the Buddha’s teachings can inspire “our efforts to address many of the broader challenges confronting our world -- in peace and security, in development and in the protection of our environment. In each of these areas, we have to rise above narrow self-interest, and think and act as members of one global community”.
The Deputy Prime Minister of Nepal, as well as, Permanent Representatives and Deputy Permanent Representatives of Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Viet Nam addressed the gathering.
Ambassador Dr. Palitha Kohona stated that “Buddhism which is more a philosophy and a way of life, advocated the middle path and was extremely appropriate to the strife torn world of today.  The Buddha’s message of peace, tolerance and understanding was a soothing balm to a humanity striving to end violence and conflict”. He also added, “The attraction of Buddhism was its simple reliance on self-accountability without the need for intervention by a superior being or beings. You, yourself, were responsible and accountable for what you did or did not do.”
Ven. Monks,
H.E. Ambassador Sinhaseni
President of the General Assembly, H.E. John Ashe
The Representative of the Secretary-General and the High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, Ambassador Nassir,
Friends, Buddhists and Non- Buddhists,
We are gathered here tonight, pursuant to the General Assembly, Res. 54/115, to celebrate three very important events for Buddhists around the world. Gautama the Buddha was born, attained enlightenment and passed away on the full moon day in the month of Vesak, over two thousand five hundred and sixty years ago. The coincidence of these events was significant by itself and has given cause for celebration,  but more importantly, it was the message of the path to end suffering, peace, non violence, ahimsa, tolerance and coexistence that he preached for forty five years that inspired millions of men and women for two and a half millennia. The Buddha's teachings spread from one end of Asia to the other without the assistance of invading armies and the brute authority of states and in the process caused a magnificent surge in cultural expression as evidenced in Bamiyan, Gandhara, Taxila, Anuradhapura, Yangon, Ayuthya, Bangkok, Angkor, Borobudur, Beijing and Nora. The Buddha’s message remains relevant today as we confront a multiplicity of challenges here at the United Nations.
His message was carried by missionary monks, traders, travelers, and others. Many countries in central Asia were once flourishing Buddhist kingdoms, as can be seen even today from the ruins of massive temples and delicately executed sculptures and paintings. During various times in history, strong links existed among the various Buddhist kingdoms of Asia. History records the exchanges of missionaries and pilgrims among Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and China. Early diplomatic practice in the region was dependent on relations among Buddhist monarchies. The Chinese monk, Fa Hian, spent six years at the Abayagiri Monastery in Sri Lanka in the sixth century and left copious records of his experiences. Our main religious order today owes its origins to Thailand. Sinhala kings maintained, at their expense, a vast pilgrim's rest in Bodh Gaya in Northern India.
The attraction of Buddhism was its simple reliance on self-accountability without the need for intervention by a superior being or beings. You, yourself, were responsible and accountable for what you did or did not do. It sought to identify the causes of sadness and proposed a solution - the middle path. Buddhism in essence was not a religion, but a way of life. A philosophy. It acknowledged no distinction based on caste, ethnicity or sex.  
Today Sri Lanka is a majority Buddhist country. Over seventy per cent of the population is Buddhist. The country embraced Buddhism after Emperor Asoka of India sent his only son, Mahinda, and daughter, Sanghamitta, as missionaries. Since then the royal family, the people, their art and culture have all been influenced by the gentle tenets of Buddhism. Sri Lanka has also come under other influences over the centuries, introduced with the assistance of the swords of invading armies. But the predominant feature of our history has been the tolerance and accommodation extended by the majority Buddhist population to the religions introduced later. Today, churches, Hindu temples and mosques exist cheek by jowl with Buddhist temples. While tensions emerge occasionally, as they do in most other countries, we deal with these with an approach that combines accommodation, understanding and tolerance and where necessary by deploying the law. There is zero tolerance of religious hate speech.
Our attitudes are conditioned by thousands of years of co existing with different religious groups. The Hindus have lived amongst us for a thousand years. The Muslims who initially came as traders from the Middle East settled down, inter married with local women and became an integral part of our community. The Christians of different denominations, who came with the Western colonial powers, are a vital part of our social fabric. We all live among each other and all are an integral part of the Sri Lankan social tapestry framed by the majority Buddhist community. Temples, churches and mosques, schools and community centres belonging to the different faiths exist side by side in our villages and towns.
I am most encouraged by the presence of all of you at this event. A joyful and reverential commemoration of the life and teachings of an exceptional human being. One who forsook a princely life and went in search of the way to rid life of suffering.
Sri Lanka’s celebration of this day will be highlighted in a video that will follow. I take this opportunity to thank Ambassador Sinhaseni and the staff of the Permanent Mission of Thailand for the wonderful organisation of this event, this morning and now.
May all beings be well!.

The Dhamma School in Jaffna that Teaches Buddhism in Tamil

Translation by Sudath Madugalle, Article originally published in the Sinhala ‘Divaina’ newspaper on May 11, 2014

Jaffna, Sri Lanka -- At a time when archeological sites and artifacts were still being discovered as evidence of Buddhist heritage in the Jaffna Peninsula, the dark omen of terrorism started clouding the peace of the entire Buddhist nation.
People in the peninsula drifted away from Buddhism not leaving even a scant clue evidencing its Buddhist heritage. This was a time when one could not even find one person who could recite a Buddhist prayer leave alone a monk that could deliver a Budddhist sermon. There was no one to spread the message of kindness and loving compassion to youth falling rapidly into the clutches of terrorism.
Now when the dark clouds of civil conflict have been dispelled and peace reigns supreme in this blessed land, we came across one man who is trying to spread the soothing balm of the Dhamma among people in the Jaffna Peninsula. Arunnethwaraththam Ravi Kumar lives in Manipay, Jaffna. During the reign of terror in the North, he made a living as a tuition master.
Our parents are all residents of Jaffna. But I had my school education till grade 10 in Bandarawela. I returned to Manipay in 1979; but the political situation there was deteriorating fast.
Ravi Kumar started to narrate his life story to us.His peers among the youth in Jaffna were getting drawn into brandishing weapons. They were in ‘high spirits’ about their new found power. How did the young Ravi Kumar feel about all this at the time?
Since I lived in Bandarawela during my school days, I associated mostly with the Sinhalese. I knew about them and understood them quite well.
Life in Jaffna in the meantime was taking a strange turn. Friendly ties between Tamil families were fading away. One could not go from one family home to visit another. Divisions between them were deep and marked strongly on the basis of the Caste System. But in Bandarawela things were very different. There were no ethnic tensions between the Sinhalese and the Tamils. We moved with one another as friends. There was no division according to caste or creed.
My father was an Inspector of Police. He told me that 36 different groups had taken up arms. They were fighting among themselves. Father and son shot each other because they belonged to two separate groups. It was during this time that I started teaching Botany as a tuition master.
One day, Terrorists came in and told me that I had to stop these classes. They wanted to speak to these students, but I was against it. Prabhakaran was getting powerful at this time. He was going about terrorizing people. He even came to my house and demanded that my students be taught their political doctrine.
As I could not tolerate all this I left for India. I was then married, with a five year old child. But I left alone. When I started receiving death threats I decided I would try my best to save my life. I was first in Chennai then I lived in Mumbai, working as a travel agent.
The saddest part of Ravi Kumar’s life was beginning at this time. When the terrorists could not get hold of Ravi Kumar who had left the shores of his motherland because of fighting among the terror groups, they took revenge on his wife.
“I got information that my wife had been abducted. I felt very depressed about my life...“
“One day I had a good experience in Tamil Nadu.”
Ravi Kumar was recalling a 30 year history. It was not simply a personal narrative; it was intertwined with socio-political issues of the time.
“Once Prabhakaran had come to Tamil Nadu to assassinate Uma Maheswaran. Neither of them was well known at the time. MGR who was the Chief Minister tacitly supported them. But the police chief at the time DIG Mohandas did not like them. He arrested Prabhakaran who was armed with a pistol at the point of time of arrest. He had been remanded in Thenampette, where I went and saw him when I got the information. But I could not speak to him. He was then freed on the orders of MGR.”
Ravi Kumar was feeling increasingly desolate at this time. His wife had disappeared. His daughter was growing up with relatives. Conditions in the Northern Province simply did not allow Ravi Kumar to go back. He felt the need for peace of mind very strongly. He started going about looking for solace from wherever he could find it.
“I felt tremendous pain and anguish when I was reminded of my wife and child. I wanted to lead a religious life. I went to ‘Hare Rama Hare Krishna’ centres and observed those practices for some time. Later, I became a Pentecostal religious follower for a while. I stayed at the Golden Temple of the Sikhs following Sikhism. But none of it worked.”
“One day I chanced upon a meditation centre called Battadiya. I practiced meditation for ten days. I liked it.”
“At Hare Rama you had to dance. That was difficult. Here they taught you the Dhamma preached by the Lord Buddha. In the meantime I practiced Anapanasathi Meditation very well. I became a lecturer in meditation in the same institute. The Sinhalese were always peaceful. They practice the Dhamma and worship the gentle Lord Buddha. But the deities worshipped by the Hindus are violent. So are the films that many Hindus watch. Both have influenced the Hindus into becoming violent.”
Ravi Kumar began to move closer and closer to Buddhism as every new experience he gains in life has strengthened his convictions in Buddhism and the confidence he has placed on his Buddhist faith. He was now not satisfied with finding solace in Buddhism only for himself, but wants others also to share the feeling of the soothing peace of mind it brings.
“Therefore I started a Dhamma School in Jaffna.”
“It is called Nandarama Dhamma School. Also, I have now founded the Jaffna Buddhist Association. The Tamil people have now only got to send their children to this institution. Tamil politicians told these people that Buddhism is a Sinhalese Religion. They misled the Tamil people to keep away from Buddhism and the Temple. They should not be deceived any longer… they should experience the Dhamma for themselves.”
“On the other hand they have converted many Hindus to Christianity. They gave prominence to Christians among the terrorists. Who is Anton Balasingham….? They wanted to convert the Tamil people to Christianity and create a Tamil Eelam. That is why they kept telling the Tamil people ‘the Buddhists are against you, the Christians are with you and support you.’ 50% of the Tamil people are already Christians. Many of those among them belong to Pentecostal and the like.”
“When I started the Buddhist Dhamma School, Suresh Premachandran accused me of trying to destroy the Tamil Culture by doing so. I asked him about American Missionaries and about what they were doing. The ordinary Tamil women wore colorful Sarees. They wore quite a lot of jewelry. Now they dress in white sarees according to American missionary dictates and pressure. Normally a Tamil woman would wear white only when her husband dies.”
“Now do you see who has destroyed the Tamil Culture?”
Ravi Kumar carries on with his work by himself. He has started the Dhamma School in his home. At present 50 Tamil children are taught the Dhamma at this school.
“I need the support of the Sangha. The Sangha should be encouraged to engage in teaching Buddhism to the Tamil people before they travel to Europe to spread Buddhism among the White people. Come to Jaffna. Preach the Dhamma to the Tamils without fear.”
“I ask the Tamil people of Jaffna not to look at Buddhism in suspicion. When you go to the Temple, even the gods will be there. If the present trend of religious conversion among Tamils people continues 80% of the Tamil people in Jaffna will become Christians. The balance 20% will turn to Islam. That will destroy the Hindus, as well as the Buddhists. We are one family. If we fight among ourselves those in the neighboring houses are the ones who would benefit.”
“The Tamil youth in Jaffna and the children approve of what I am doing. I appeal to the Sangha and the Government to help me carry on my work.”
Ravi Kumar is resisting doggedly against the evil forces of ‘Maara Sena’. He is seeking support to spread the Dhamma in the Peninsula. This Vesak Poya Day the moon shines as if to shower Ravi Kumar’s efforts with noble blessings. The moon alone will not be able to illuminate a peninsula long draped in darkness. It will also need the aid of the men of the caliber of Ravi Kumar to do so.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Luminous is the Mind released by Friendliness!

The Blessed Buddha once explained:
Whatever meritorious action one performs, all these together are not worth
1/16th part of a mind released into friendliness, since the mind released into
friendliness blazes forth, & outshines all with an unsurpassable brilliance...
Just as the radiance from all the stars and planets does not match even a
1/16th part of the radiance from the moon, which thus outshines all the stars,
similarly; whatever good thoughts one fulfils by doing meritorious actions,
all these together are not worth one-sixteenth fraction of the mind released
by infinite friendliness! Since a mind released into friendliness - all alone -
blazes forth, and thus outshines all these with an incomparable radiance...
Just as the mighty sun rising at autumn dawn, by making any fog evaporate,
scattering any dark thundercloud, makes the sky all blue & clear, so it alone
freely shines, blazes in a blue brilliance, - exactly so - whatever thoughts
there may be for gaining merit, all these together are not worth one 16th
fraction, of a mind released into friendliness! Since the mind released into
friendliness - all alone - outshines all these with inestimable luminosity!
So did the Lord Buddha state this matter, and he further added:
For the Noble friend, who by will, who fully aware and deliberately brings
infinite, boundless and endless friendliness into being, this mountain-like
limitless goodwill makes all evil substrate evaporate, & the chains of mind,
these mental fetters become thin, slender and slack. If a friend without
ill will cares for even one single living being, such friend, through that,
becomes quite skilled and clever, so far more for the Noble Friend, who
by possessing a caring heart for all sentient beings, without even a single
exception, accumulates great, massive, and immense amounts of merit!
Those gurus and priests who sacrifice life, objects, or fire, who bathe
ceremoniously, devoted to mere forms and empty ritual, blindly attached
to and obsessed by culture & traditions of primeval & often unknown origin,
do never experience even a 16th of this release of mind by friendliness
fully brought into being, just like the vagueness of even all the stars cannot
either ever outshine the moon! Since there cannot exist any evil animosity
whatsoever, nor enmity at all, neither even an atomic trace of hate in a
Nobly Released One, who by caring indiscriminately and infinitely for all
living beings, who by possessing such treasure of a mind relinquished by
friendliness, simply cannot ever suppress, dominate, harm, or kill even the
smallest sentient breathing being! Luminous is such perfectly released mind!
The Luminous Mind!
Have a nice & noble day!
Friendship is the Greatest! Bhikkhu Samāhita _/\_ ]

How to be a True Buddhist through Observance?

Poya is the full-moon of Poson (June), which is especially noteworthy to the Sri Lankan
Buddhists as the day on which Emperor Asoka's son, the Arahat Mahinda, officially
introduced Buddhism to the island in the 3rd century B.C. Accordingly, in addition to
the normal ritualistic observances undertaken on a Poya day, on Poson day devotees
flock to Mihintale & Anurādhapura, the ancient holy capital city of the country, for
it was there that Arahat Mahinda converted the then ruler, King Devanampiya Tissa,
and his court to Buddhism, thereby setting in motion a series of events that finally
made Sri Lanka a stronghold home of Theravāda Buddhism.

Arahat Mahinda arrives                               and tests the king's intelligence.

Mihintale, Sri Lanka.        Mahinda Thera's cave there.

Essays about the significance of Poson Poya Days in Theravada Buddhism:
An Arahat meets a King.
The cultural dimension of Poson.
The birth of a new civilization.
The induction of the Triple Gem to Sri Lanka.
On such Uposatha Observance days:Any Lay Buddhist simply joins the Three Refuges and undertakes
the Five Precepts like this: Newly bathed, shaved, white-clothed,
with clean bare feet, one kneels at a shrine with a Buddha-statue,
and bows first three times, so that feet, hands, elbows, knees and
head touch the floor. Then, with joined palms in front of the heart,
one recite these memorized lines in a loud, calm & steady voice:

As long as this life lasts:
I hereby take refuge in the Buddha.  
I hereby take refuge in the Dhamma.
I hereby take refuge in the Sangha.

I hereby seek shelter in the Buddha for the 2nd time.
I hereby seek shelter in the Dhamma for the 2nd time.
I hereby seek shelter in the Sangha for the 2nd time.

I hereby request protection from the Buddha for the 3rd time.
I hereby request protection from the Dhamma for the 3rd time.
I hereby request protection from the Sangha for the 3rd time.
I will hereby respect these Three Jewels the rest of my life!
I accept to respect & undertake these 5 training rules: 
I hereby accept the training rule of avoiding all Killing.
I hereby accept the training rule of avoiding all Stealing.
I hereby accept the training rule of avoiding all Sexual Abuse.
I hereby accept the training rule of avoiding all Dishonesty.
I hereby accept the training rule of avoiding all Alcohol & Drugs.

As long as this life lasts, I am thus protected by these 5 precepts...
Then, one keeps and protects these sacred vows better than one's own
eyes & children!, since they protect you & all other beings much better
than any army! They are the highest offer one can give in & to this world!
This is the very start on the path towards Nibbāna -the Deathless Element-
This is the Noble Way to Peace, to Freedom, to Bliss, initiated by Morality,
developed further by Dhamma-Study and fulfilled by training of Meditation...

Today indeed is Poya or Uposatha or observance day, where any lay Buddhist
normally keeps the Eight Precepts from sunrise until the next dawn...
If any wish an official recognition by the Bhikkhu-Sangha, they may simply
forward the lines starting with "I..." signed with name, date, town & country
to me or join here. A public list of this new Saddhamma-Sangha is here!
The New Noble Community of Disciples: The Saddhamma Sangha:
Join Here:
For Details on Poya Uposatha Observance Days

May your journey hereby be eased, light, swift and sweet. Never give up!

Mihintale, Sri Lanka, where the Arahat Mahinda, arrived in 3rd century B.C.

The Buddhist Poya Uposatha Observance Day Calendar for 2014 is here:
Poson Poya: Arahat Mahinda at Mihintale!
Have a nice & noble day!
Friendship is the Greatest! Bhikkhu Samāhita _/\_ ]