Lotus Blooms In the Blog

September 10, 2006

Buddha Emanation Bodies and Pictures

Filed under: General — by Kent Sandvik @ 7:26 pm

geshe_dakpa_blesses_medicine_buddha.jpgI took this picture this summer at the Land of Medicine Buddha festival in Soquel, where the big Medicine Buddha thanka is taken out and carried up to the Maitreya temple, and put outside.

Geshe Dakpa from Tse Chen Ling in San Francisco is here blessing the thanka, it’s just a small part of the very huge Medicina Buddha thanka.

Anyway, many might wonder why Tibetan lamas bless images, statues, thankas, and so on.

According to Buddhist teachings, enlightened beings have full control of their body and mind. In the Mahayana teachings, this goal has been reached with the main motivating force to benefit all sentient beings. Thanks to this focus the enlightened beings could take any form to benefit sentient beings. In other words, enlightened beings could emanate any form needed to help others with specific goals in mind.

One way to benefit beings is to take form of enlightened goals, such as curing all beings from suffering — Medicine Buddha. So it’s not a big leap of faith to be taken that one of the most beneficial things an enlightened being could do is to manifest in forms of statues, pictures, thankas, stupas, and so on, and this way inspire others to follow the same goals as the enlightened being long time ago aspired to do.

So for a lama to bless an image, it’s a way to have an intuition what’s really going on.

Anyway, it makes me think twice next time I see a Buddhist statue, image, or stupa…


August 19, 2006

Soldiers just have to do and die, not to ask the reason why

Filed under: General — by palaniappan @ 2:43 pm

Standing Guard http://www.flickr.com/photos/spiffhappens/218797313/  

The past few weeks have reminded us that the value of life is relative and depends on who sees it.  2 Israeli soldiers kidnapped = thousands of civilians dead and 1 million homeless.  I am not supporting either side.  I am looking at this and wondering how is it possible to start the incident off by kidnapping the soldiers, knowing full well the retaliation it is likely to bring.  I am also wondering how so many dying can justify the fight for the release of the 2 soldiers. 

Leaving the politics aside, I am looking at the role of the soldier. Coming from a country where we have to do national Service of 2.5 years in the armed forces, I know what it means to leave no soldier behind. So what is the Dharma role of a soldier in a war? 

  • Can he shoot to kill? Or holding a rifle would be meaningless. 
  • Worse, if he doesn’t then what happens to his citizens back home who are depending on him to defend them and their homes?
  • Can a soldier choose not to be a soldier in a country where it is compulsory to be one? Then how does he fulfill his social responsibilities to the society and nation that protected him when he was too young or defenceless to protect himself?
  • Can Buddhists claim to follow the path of non-violence and not be soldiers?
  • Is being a soldier not a Rightful Living? In today’s world, then who can have a Rightful Living if there was no soldier to defend them?

There are many more questions.  But I stop here for your comments, before I soldier on 😉

June 25, 2006

A Proud Day to Be Canadian

Filed under: General — by Warren Moriarity @ 6:04 pm

On Friday, June 23, 2006, David Sweet, the Member of Parliament for Ancaster, Ontario, Canada, (the town where I grew up) introduced a motion to declare His Holiness the Dalai Lama an Honorary Citizen of Canada. The motion was passed unanimously by the House of Commons. Only two other people have been honoured in this way, Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, who saved the lives of thousands of Hungarian Jews in the Second World War and Nelson Mandela who led the struggle against the racist apartheid system of South Africa.

June 11, 2006

Welcome to Lotus Blooms in the Blog

Filed under: General — by Kent Sandvik @ 7:22 pm

Buddha Statue in a Redwood Tree

This blog is put together by a collective of editors interested in the Buddhist world view. The articles will relate to the field of Buddhist thought and practice, not especially related to a specific tradition.

Contact us in case you are interested in joining this collective. To do this, subscribe to the Lotus Blooms in the Blog Editors Group, read it for a while, and then post an introduction email and telling more about yourself.

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