MERCY BEGINS AT THE DINNER TABLE Alive Dharma teaching,July 12,09
*Homage to the fourty-two peaceful wisdom deities in the mandala*
Dear Friends of Buddha Dharma,
in this Summer series of Teaching we reflect on the ancient yet so actual story : Mercy begins at the dinner table- in connection with petition : Stop eating meat and heal our planet ! There are also two answered questions and e-learning curriculum, related to Visual Dharma: Verses of prayer to Eight Noble auspicious ones , sent today to all Friends on YouTube . Please study further on our two blogs : http://www.MySpace.com/BuddhaDharma_OBFI or at www.buddhadharmaobfinternational.wordpress.com. Both blogs have photos, big layout and links to Wikipedia.
“May the noble and meaningful increase and all wishes be accomplished.
May good fortune, happiness and prosperity be fully endowed !”
This is our wish to all who read our Dharmas .
I.INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR CONTEMPORARY BUDDHIST STUDIES
Visual Dharma : Verses of prayer to the Eight Noble Auspicious Ones, recited by venerable Ayang Rinpoche, written down by ven. Mipham Rinpoche
E-learning curriculum :
1.Which Sugatas,Bodhisattvas,Goddesses & Guardians are invoked with the Verses of Prayer to the Eight Noble Auspicious Ones ?
2.What is the meaning of prostration in Buddhist practice?
3.In which way was this sublime Buddhist Invocation discovered by Mipham Rinpoche?
QUESTIONS and ANSWERS
1.Nutier, France :
Dear venerable Sir , please enjoy my question , thank you .
We know well that we are living in Samsara which we govern . We can say that , everyone has his own Samsara .It looks like a spiritual guide who manages our activities in the past life, present , and future .
Q.92 – Where does Samsara come from ?
May peace and happiness be upon you always !
We wish you a lot of inspiration in collecting answers to your questions and publishing them in separate book.
The origin of samsara is ignorance or unawareness (Skt. Avidya, tib. Marigpa). Samsara can never be spiritual guide. Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, their teachings/Dharma and the community of virtuous Buddhist practitioners are spiritual guides. These are the three Jewels of Refuge : Buddha-Dharma-Sangha. By receiving the Refuge and corresponding vows of personal liberation (Pratimoksha vows- Five ethical precepts of Buddhism) one actualy become the follower of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni and of all Buddhas . To understand the origin of samsara one must study , recite and contemplate the Wish-granting prayer of Samantabhadra : see related Visual Dharma. Introductory verses teach directly about the View of Dharmakaya :
The base of everything is unformed.
Self-existing wide space beyond expression
Has no name of samsara and nirvana.
When you realise this,
you are a buddha.
When you don´t realise this,
You are in samsara wondering sentient being.
As Kunzang Gongpa Zhangtal teaches us, there are two kinds of ignorance : unattentive consciousness and disturbance and conceptual ignorance. Unattentive consciousness means wondering thoughts, depression/sleepiness or agitation. Conceptual ignorance means grasping after concepts without understanding their true meaning. Buddha Samantabhadra is praying at the end of Kunzang Gongpa Zhangtal :
Primordial base of all beings
Is the same as mine, the Buddha.
Yet they have entered in the ground of confussion and unawareness
And now they perform useless actions.
Six activities are like illussion of the dream.
And with this always excellent wish-granting prayer
May all beings without exception
Realise enlightenment in the Dharmadhatu.
2. Drew, United Kingdom :
“Hey, I feel i am being more and more affected by negative desire, as sexual imagery is portrayed more and more openly in our society. Any advice on how to rise above it? Thanks.”
Yes, Drew, there are concrete spiritual advices.
It is true that we are all exposed to erotic imaginary and pornography on internet , tv , some newspapers and magazines. Those in this lucrative industry know exactly human weaknesses and desires. Pornographic videos on youtube have much greater watches like for example our Visual Dharmas . Some have many millions views. This show how much this negative industry is spread all over the world also with the help of internet ! Many people are sex addicts , which is another kind of adiction, along with alcohol, drugs, tobacco. There is excellent movie : Anger management! with programme how to heal TAS = Toxic anger syndrom and other addictions. Adam Sandler and Jack Nicolson played great role in that movie.
To overcome excitement and attachment to negative images of desire , like pornography etc. one must keep one´s body, speech and thoughts pure all the time. It is very helpful to not eat pungent herbs like garlic, onios and asafoetida at all, because these pungent herbs increase sexual desires. This is well know fact in Ayurvedic medicine. One should also stop eating meat, because with meat eating one´s anger also increase. In Buddhist wholesome medicine we recommend purification whole body tonics , Vajrasattva practice ; see related Visual Dharma. We also recommend daily Chikung energy workout, to relax and balance the energy flow. We also recommend daily meditations and recitation of Prayers: like Homage to Buddha Manjushri (see related Visual dharma). These are concrete spiritual advices that can be used by everyone. May it be beneficial and may peace, unselfish love and virtues prosper in the world.
II.WISDOM WITHOUT BORDERS
MERCY BEGINS AT THE DINNER TABLE
“During the Ming dynasty a Buddhist called Wang Cheng was always willing to help others, especially orphans and the poor.
Every day Wang chanted Buddhist sutras or scripture. In general, he was very pius, but for some reason, there was one rule of Buddhism that he did not obey : he was not a vegetarian.
He lived during a bad period. There were many disasters. Bandits and outlaws roamed the country. Wang was worried. He heard that a monk living in a cave practiced Buddhism so hard that he could tell the past and the future. He knew the causes of present conditions and the effects the future would bring. Wang decided to visit him for instruction, even though the way was long and dangerous.
Finnaly, after many difficulties, Wang reaced the monk`s cave. He addressed the monk . “Your heavenly honour, the world today is full of bandits and outlaws. The people are oppressed by those bearing weapons. We do not know how to keep living. We living creatures are drowning in the sea of disasters. We call upon you, sir, to show mercy by giving as a hand and helping us survive.”
The monk smiled. “You are Wang Cheng, aren´t you ?”
Wang was startled. “Yes, sir, but how could you know my name ?” What is your honor´s instruction ?”
“If you can not be a vegetarian, you are just wasting our time with this questions.”
Wang continued asking questions, but the monk have no more to say to him, so Wang had to go home and think over what he had learned. He decided that he really did have to stop eating carcasses of dead animals.
Several years later, Wang presented himself at the cave again. When the monk saw him, he laughed. “That it`s more like it! You have understood and you have finally taken the teachings of mercy to heart.
We live in treacherous times. The country is full of bandits. Only those who do not kill may live in peace. This is the balance of the universe.”
With that, the monk closed his eyes and continued his meditation.
Wang Cheng returned home to tell everybody that nobody who kills any living creature can hope for peace, because killing causes killing. If you eat meat, you are responsible for many deaths. So even if you do good deeds, you can not enjoy true peace. To enjoy peace , you have to earn it by creating peace, not suffering. The best way to do that is to respect all life and eat only vegetarian food.”
Commentary by Tara Tulku Rinpoche:
This precious story is found in the Dharma book THE LOVE OF LIFE, published for free distribution by the Buddha Educational Foundation, Taipei, Taiwan. Buddha Dharma obtained it in 1994. We rarely see in the Dharma books such notice: Reproduction welcomed. All parts of this book may be reproduced without written permission. Any part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval systems, or transmitted in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or other. Please share this with everyone you know !
Theater actor Sandi Pavlin recited it in a heart felt way during the Interfaith dialogue about Religions and ethic (Cultural and congress centre Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana, Slovenia, in October 1998) that we organised.
Taking the teachings of mercy to heart :
This story is A-live also nowdays when many people suffer because of natural disasters, regressive economy and war conflicts. When we and many other spiritual groups, few religious leaders and awake individuals always first ask that one must become a life long vegetarian, some may even be offended, because we repeat this again and again. “Please, take the teachings of mercy to your heart and don´t eat dead bodies of animals any more ! By becoming a vegetarian you will save your own peace, save yourself, saving lives of animals and the world peace. World peace first begins in every being or as the story teaches as: Mercy begins at the dinner table ! You will earn your own peace by creating peace, not suffering! Take this Dharma advice to your heart today. Do not hesistate : there are recipes for high quality vegetarian food published at OBF Group Buddhist Wholesome Medicine and elsewhere. Supreme master TV also have much advice. We are glad that many vegetarians and vegans are among friends of Buddha Dharma. Follow these noble ways of living from today onwards. There are more than 600 millions of Buddhists in the world today. If they all become vegetarians soon, how many lives of fishes and other animals would be saved and not being killed for the food ?! Buddhist practitioners must take teaching about mercy to the heart. It is not sincere to invoke the blessings of Avalokiteshvara or Quan Yin Bodhisattvas of mercy/compassion and still eat meat ! We must be sincere in our Dharma practice if we wish to proceed in spiritual path toward Enlightenment of the Buddhas. Buddhas always see how sincere we are, because Buddhas are omni-present and all-knowing. They see directly in our hearts . I pray that more and more religious leaders would begin promoting the true teachings of mercy and compassion by being vegetarians , saving lives. We are glad that H.H. Gyalwa Karmapa XVII. ordered to all Dharma centres and practitioners in Karma Kagyu Buddhist tradition not to eat meat any more. Video on youtube show this.
Venerable Mangala Konchok Norbu – Dharma art director of our Buddhist channel on youtube, also signed the petition about Stop eating meat and Heal our planet ! We invite everyone to sign this important petition today – don´t wait long. It will take you only few minutes. You can even write your own comment after signing it. Dear Friends,
I have just read and signed the petition: “Stop eating Meat – and heal our Planet!”. Please take a moment to read about this important issue, and join me in signing the petition. It takes just 30 seconds, but can truly make a difference. We are trying to reach 10.000 signatures – please sign here: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/fleischverbot
Once you have signed, you can help even more by asking your friends and family to sign as well. Thank you ! OM MANI PADME HUM
Untill June 12 , 2009 2378 people around then world already signed the petition, among them many from China and Taiwan. The aim is to collect 10.000 signatures in short time. Don´t hesistate to sign it today. Everyone can do it . Tell yourself every day : Yes, I can become and remain a vegetarian ! Yes, I can do it !
BUDDHA DHARMA – OBF INTERNATIONAL
Serving, upholding and protecting the Teachings of Buddhas by promoting ten enlightened activities as taught by Buddha Shakyamuni and his emanation Guru Padmasambhava; promoting Millenium goals of United nations : Gender equality and empowerment of women.
His Eminence Lama Karma Gyan Sagar Rinpoche, World peace Envoy, Nepal
Venerable Mangala Konchok Norbu , Buddha Dharma, EU
Shifu John Chow, Martial arts, TCM, Spirituality, Australia
Her Eminence Lama Tara Tulku Drimed Drolkhar Rinpoche, Nyingma Vajrayana Atiyoga Ling, EU
www.MySpace.com/BuddhaDharma_OBFI blog, Dharma art-slide show, blog
www.buddhadharmaobfinternational.wordpress.com Heritage of Mankind-Treasure of pure Dharma : previous Alive Dharma teachings, photos & links to Wikipedia
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