Buddhist teachings compassion,meditation how to breathe underwater,how to know if your soulmate is thinking about you verse,how to improve self confidence and self esteem - PDF 2016

05.08.2014
In my philosophical understanding, I follow a path that is similar to achieve similar results, but the mindset is slightly different in order to appeal to a wider variety of people. Previous Previous post: How can we see the small miracles in our life?Next Next post: Write That Story! Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.
Those of you who have lived in the Saffron Forest know that when a person is ordained as a monk, his preceptor bestows on him a new Pali name, which in Thai is called the chaya (from the Pali, meaning ‘shadow’). In the case of novitiate ordination, the serpent, a reptile that renews itself by shedding its skin, is associated primarily with transformation. During the Lord Buddha’s time, a certain naga or mythological snake, by its magical power turned itself into a man and became by ordination a monk. There are stories of preceptors who have no knowledge of Pali but who became preceptors by chance, through the power of their frequent gifts of shrimp paste and fish sauce to the ruling monk of the district. When the ordination ceremony is complete the preceptor measures the sun’s shadow (chaya) to determine what time of day it is, because in the olden days there were no clocks and people relied on sundials to tell the time.
Generally a chaya is only given to bhikkhus, and not to novices because in the novice ordination there is no formal announcement of the sa?gha.
This entry was posted in Life in the Saffron Forest and tagged Ordination, Sathienpong Wanapok, Thai Buddhism.
The Buddha’s underlying objective of going out on almsround was not to obtain something, but rather to offer something. There was one layperson (it’s better you don’t know the name) who had great faith in the Dhammayuttika monks, waiting each morning to offer food. From that day onwards this woman would only give alms to Mahanikaya monks; she would ignore the Dhammayuttika monks or even revile them.
This entry was posted in Life in the Saffron Forest and tagged Almsround, Sathienpong Wanapok, Thai Buddhism. Four years ago my brother and sister-in-law gave me the book ‘The Golden Bough’ by James Frazer. As a young man I felt a wistful romanticism in regard to ancient cultures—the tribes and ethnic groups whom I felt were much closer to nature than people in today’s society. The feeling of sadness resulted from the observation of how people in the past, the world over, developed rigid belief systems and rituals that were handed down across generations, and, because they became so deeply entrenched, were almost impossible to let go of. Of course the modern age is not without its assumed beliefs and values, which very often go unquestioned. Modern society seems to have swung to an opposite extreme, where anything not immediately visible by way of ‘empirical analysis’ is rejected, discarded, banished.
Another feeling I had while reading this book was a sense of marvel, amazement, and reverence, considering how the Buddha was able to both realize and spread the Dhamma 2,500 years ago in a society that was firmly set in long-standing religious beliefs and customs, many of which were based in wrong view. The Buddha’s release from self-identification (despite the probability that he would get ensnared in more refined notions of self), his revelation that the world functions without a creator deity, and his discovery of the nonself and non-creative Unconditioned count as enormous advancements in human wisdom. Although ‘The Golden Bough’ is somewhat difficult reading due to its density of information, James Frazer was an exceptional scholar and an excellent writer.
Some things are extreme to me it is ok to take what you want from other cultures, this will just scratch the surface.This short essay is intended to give a brief introduction to Buddhism. In Buddhism, it would consist of following in the eightfold path and for my philosophy it would consist of getting rid of the vices and embracing the virtues.
I had no idea why the new name is referred to as a shadow but this matter was clarified when I asked Luang Por.
One day the naga monk during a deep sleep turned into a naga and was seen by brother monks. Tambiah interprets this legend adapted from the Mahavagga as symbolizing a novice’s renunciation of male virility, which he identifies with the serpent.
The time of day is then kept as a record, that a monk of such and such a name was ordained when the shadow had reached a particular point. But it is strange that at Wat Bahn Huay where I was ordained as a novice Luang Por gave a Pali name to all the novices—I don’t know from where he got this example.
There was a Mahanikaya monk (it’s better not to know his name or which monastery he lived in, but rest assured he wasn’t from my monastery of Bahn Huay) who became very indignant and spent hours hatching a plan. Anyone else standing there with rice would be ready to offer some; they wouldn’t be playing games like this woman.
But on the second day, as soon as I parted my robes to bring out my bowl, she screamed and ran into her house. I picked it up many times over the past few years, but because of its extremely comprehensive coverage on the customs and beliefs of different cultures, I ended up only skimming through the second half (which in itself comprises 400 pages!). It is not my intent in this blog to get into a deep comparison between modern society and ancient, tribal cultures.
This rigidity of mind, of being fixed and confined within a specific worldview, is distressing in itself. And there is no shortage of superstition, credulity, and blind belief, not to mention slaughter and oppression. One of the reasons I love about living in Thailand is that ‘the world still teems with those motley beings’—the place is alive with spirits. Animal sacrifices abounded, performed to appease the gods, and the brahman class was determined to maintain its superiority over other castes, by citing their divine rights and privileges. Some of these paths we have followed a little way; others, if fortune should be kind, the writer and the reader may one day pursue together. In magic man depends on his own strength to meet the difficulties and dangers that beset him on every side. It will discuss the way Buddhists perceive the world, the four main teachings of the Buddha, the Buddhist view of the self, the relationship between this self and the various ways in which it responds to the world, the Buddhist path and the final goal. This way in the circle of monks when one knows someone else’s Pali name one can determine the day of the week he was born, unless the preceptor unconventionally ignores this convention which doesn’t happen often.
The matter was reported to the Buddha, and the naga monk had to relinquish his monkhood for no creature except a human being may be ordained as a monk. While male sexual virility may characterize the serpent as a mythic archetype, the Mahavagga tale on which it is based suggests a different construction … In short the story illustrates two kinds of transformation: from creature instincts to human behaviour regulated by the Buddhist sasana, and from a lay ethic governed by the norms of sila to the monastic pursuit of nibbanic liberation.
This matter only became clear to me when I later went to Bangkok and learned that all of the novices in the Dhammayuttika Nikaya had Pali names.


He was very dim-witted and it was extremely difficult for him to memorize any of the chants.
Literally, the word means ‘dropping rice.’ What the word really means is placing almsfood into the bowls of the monks. The story I’m about to tell occurred when the strict holding to ordination lineage was rampant. In the end he went through with his plan and it was completely successful, fulfilling all his wishes. After that she paid no attention to Dhammayuttika monks and until now only gives food to Mahanikaya monks.
But as I read through the detailed descriptions in this book, my predominant emotion was sadness. But more disturbing is how so many of the rituals required bloodshed and death, by way of animal and human sacrifices.
In comparison, when I visit Europe or North America, I feel a barrenness and sterility—the land has been wiped clean of the mystical and mysterious. Despite understanding the principles of impermanence and dukkha, the great philosophers before the Buddha were hampered by the belief in a self or soul. He believes in a certain established order of nature on which he can surely count, and which he can manipulate for his own ends. The naga asked a favor of the Buddha that his name as a naga might be given as namesake to the candidate for monkhood in memory of the fact that it was once a monk. Originally the term chaya referred both to the time of the ordination’s completion and to the Pali name chosen by the preceptor, but later it referred exclusively to the Pali name. Luang Por must have imitated the Dhammayuttika order and not just in this matter: even the way we wore our robes and the chanting were copied from the Dhammayuttika order. It took him an entire day of struggle in order to memorize the single line of Namo Tassa Bhagavato Arahato Sammasambuddhassa.
The reason why monks go out on almsround is to receive food into their bowls from the laypeople. When monks begin to think in these superficial terms, they either stop going on almsround because they already have food, or they plot where to go in order to get lots of food. Monks from both the Dhammayuttika and the Mahanikaya orders were boasting that they kept a strict discipline (Vinaya). If he was a Dhammayuttika monk she would immediately offer food, but if he was a Mahanikaya monk she would stand impassively and ignore him.
The world will not turn, the crops not prosper, without a ritual death and resurrection, very often taken literally. Yet before we do so, we may well ask ourselves whether there is not some more general conclusion, some lesson, if possible, of hope and encouragement, to be drawn from the melancholy record of human error and folly which has engaged our attention in this book.
When he discovers his mistake, when he recognises sadly that both the order of nature which he had assumed and the control which he had believed himself to exercise over it were purely imaginary, he ceases to rely on his own intelligence and his own unaided efforts, and throws himself humbly on the mercy of certain great invisible beings behind the veil of nature, to whom he now ascribes all those far-reaching powers which he once arrogated to himself. It does not indulge in metaphysical speculation about first causes; there is no theology, no worship of a deity or deification of the Buddha.
His Pali name was Tantidhammo, which sounded very similar to Khantidhammo, the Pali name of Tahn Jarat, who was an older monk. If one examines this activity in relation to the Buddha’s activities (buddha-kicca), one sees that it is extremely important. Instead, he went out to offer the gift of Dhamma or to offer guidance to the person offering the almsfood.
Thus in the acuter minds magic is gradually superseded by religion, which explains the succession of natural phenomena as regulated by the will, the passion, or the caprice of spiritual beings like man in kind, though vastly superior to him in power.
Buddhism takes a very straightforward look at our human condition; nothing is based on wishful thinking, at all. When Luang Por called out the name Khantidhammo, Tahn Dtaw would answer, ‘Agato, bhante.’ When Tahn Jarat found out that he had a substitute answering to his name he slept at ease in his kuti and wouldn’t come to chanting very often. Therefore, the chief reason for the Buddha and his awakened disciples to go out on almsround was to assist living beings.
In some places (in the cities) the monks even scramble for the food and have punch-ups in front of the laypeople! Everything that he taught can be verified by our own observation of the way things are.If we look at our life, very simply, in a straightforward way, we see that it is marked with frustration and pain.
The Dhammayuttika monks wear their robes with equal, overlapping layers and carry their bowls in their hands, while the Mahanikaya monks roll the edges of their robes into a ‘loofah roll’ and throw it over their left shoulder, and carry their bowls on a strap on the right shoulder. These days, however, it’s not sure—many Mahanikaya monks wear their robes in the Dhammayuttika style. For example, we might have dinner with someone we admire very much, everything goes just right, and when we get home later we begin to fantasise about all the things we can do with our new-found friend, places we can go etc.
We might posit an eternal consciousness principle, or higher self, but if we examine our consciousness closely we see that it is made up of temporary mental processes and events. Things may be fine with us, at the moment, but, if we look around, we see other people in the most appalling condition, children starving, terrorism, hatred, wars, intolerance, people being tortured and we get a sort of queasy feeling whenever we think about the world situation in even the most casual way. Even though we try to avoid thinking about it, there are constant reminders that it is true.The second noble truth is that suffering has a cause. We may be extremely humble and self-deprecating, but even that is an attempt to define ourselves. The harder we struggle to establish ourselves and our relationships, the more painful our experience becomes.The third noble truth is that the cause of suffering can be ended. Our struggle to survive, our effort to prove ourselves and solidify our relationships is unnecessary. We become mindful by abandoning our expectations about the way we think things should be and, out of our mindfulness, we begin to develop awareness about the way things really are. We begin to develop the insight that things are really quite simple, that we can handle ourselves, and our relationships, very well as soon as we stop being so manipulative and complex.The Five SkandhasThe Buddhist doctrine of egolessness seems to be a bit confusing to westerners. Rather than acknowledging this loss of confidence, there was an identification with the panic and confusion.
This is known as the first skandha, the skandha of form.After the identification with confusion, ego begins to explore how it feels about the formation of this experience. This is the skandha of concept.The final step in the birth of ego, is called the skandha of consciousness.


The way ego feels about its situation (skandha of feeling) determines which of the six realms of existence it creates for itself.The Six RealmsIf ego decides it likes the situation, it begins to churn up all sorts of ways to possess it. Once we do, a ghost of that craving carries over and we look around for something else to consume. We play with it for awhile, until the novelty wears out, and then we look around for the next piece of software that has the magic glow of not being possessed yet.
Soon we haven't even got the shrink wrap off the current package when we start looking for the next one. Owning the software and using it doesn't seem to be as important as wanting it, looking forward to its arrival.
We can never find satisfaction, it is like drinking salt water to quench our thirst.Another realm is the animal realm, or having the mind like that of an animal. The thought of new possibilities frightens us and we look with scorn at anyone who suggests anything innovative. We put on blinders and only look straight ahead, never to the right or left.The hell realm is characterised by acute aggression.
Everything irritates us, even the most innocuous, and innocent statement drives us mad with anger. The heat of our anger is reflected back on us and sends us into a frenzy to escape from our torture, which in turn causes us to fight even harder and get even angrier. The whole thing builds on itself until we don't even know if we're fighting with someone else or ourselves. If someone doesn't try to help us, they are being uncooperative, and we make a note to ourselves that we will get even later.
We might hear about the possibility of meditation techniques, imported from some eastern religion, or mystical western one, that will make our minds peaceful and absorb us into a universal harmony. We begin to meditate and perform certain rituals and we find ourselves absorbed into infinite space and blissful states of existence.
We might even dwell in the realm of infinite space where thoughts seldom arise to bother us. At first we are able to smooth over the question, but eventually the doubt begins to occur more and more frequently and soon we begin to struggle to regain our supreme confidence. As soon as we begin to struggle, we fall back into the lower realms and begin the whole process over and over; from god realm to jealous god realm to animal realm to hungry ghost realm to hell realm. At some point we begin to wonder if there isn't some sort of alternative to our habitual way of dealing with the world. This is the human realm.The human realm is the only one in which liberation from the six states of existence is possible. The human realm is characterised by doubt and inquisitiveness and the longing for something better.
We begin to wonder whether it is possible to relate to the world as simple, dignified human beings.The Eightfold PathThe path to liberation from these miserable states of being, as taught by the Buddha, has eight points and is known as the eightfold path. Wrong view occurs when we impose our expectations onto things; expectations about how we hope things will be, or about how we are afraid things might be. We abandon hope and fear and take joy in a simple straight-forward approach to life.The second point of the path is called right intention.
If we are able to abandon our expectations, our hopes and fears, we no longer need to be manipulative.
We don't have to try to con situations into our preconceived notions of how they should be. Since we aren't trying to manipulate people, we don't have to be hesitant about what we say, nor do we need to try bluff our way through a conversation with any sort of phoney confidence.
We say what needs to be said, very simply in a genuine way.The fourth point on the path, right discipline, involves a kind of renunciation.
We have a simple straight-forward relationship with our dinner, our job, our house and our family. We give up all the unnecessary and frivolous complications that we usually try to cloud our relationships with.Right livelihood is the fifth step on the path. We can't wait to get home from work and begrudge the amount of time that our job takes away from our enjoyment of the good life. We don't feel that our job in a factory or office is in keeping with the image we want to project. We need to perform it properly, with attention to detail.The sixth aspect of the path is right effort. We often approach a spiritual discipline as though we need to conquer our evil side and promote our good side. We are locked in combat with ourselves and try to obliterate the tiniest negative tendency.
When we see things as they are, we can work with them, gently and without any kind of aggression whatsoever.Right mindfulness, the seventh step, involves precision and clarity.
We are mindful of the way we talk, the way we perform our jobs, our posture, our attitude toward our friends and family, every detail.Right concentration, or absorption is the eighth point of the path. We might even say that without the discipline of sitting meditation, we can't walk the eightfold path at all. It provides a space or gap in our preoccupation with ourselves.The GoalMost people have heard of nirvana. It is the cessation of passion, aggression and ignorance; the cessation of the struggle to prove our existence to the world, to survive.
We survive now; the struggle was just an extra complication that we added to our lives because we had lost our confidence in the way things are. We no longer need to manipulate things as they are into things as we would like them to be.



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