Sutra of Golden Light Puja
May01

Sutra of Golden Light Puja

 Devotional text based on the Sutra of Golden Light.     1. WORSHIP AND HOMAGE I worship the Buddhas, Who are like oceans of virtues, Mountains gleaming with the colour of gold, Like Sumeru, the King of Mountains. Even with hundreds of voices, In a thousand aeons, The Buddhas virtues cannot be told; For the Conquerors qualities are supreme: They are all-encompassing and without number. The virtues of a single Buddha, Can never be told. Each Buddha is golden, Shining like pure gold. He has fine eyes, Pure and faultless like sapphire. His shapely limbs are as pure gold And his body shines With all the marks of excellence. The Buddha is a blazing fountain Of glory, splendor and renown. He is a Buddha-sun, Removing the darkness of the three realms With his rays of compassion. He sooths the tortured minds Of those consumed By the fire of the impurities With the sage’s meshes of moonbeams. Homage to the Buddha, Whose Enlightenment is pure, Who is eloquent in the pure Dharma, Who is free from all evil ways, Who has pure understanding of life’s true nature! How endless is the Buddha’s glory, Who is a bringer of joy, A bringer of good, A bringer of blessing, The source of every inconceivable blessing.     2. GOING FOR REFUGE AND GREAT ASPIRATION With my head I bow down to all the Buddhas. Now and for ever, I go for refuge To all the Buddhas. I will worship the Buddhas In the ten directions. I will deliver from all woe, All beings throughout space. I will establish in the tenth stage All the inconceivably many beings. May they then become Tathagatas. I will follow the Bodhisattva career For millions of aeons For the sake of every single being Until every one is delivered From the ocean of woe. I will make shine the Buddha-qualities. I will cross over from the ocean of existence. And I will fill the flood of the Buddha-sea, The deep ocean of virtues and omniscience, With inconceivable Buddha-qualities. May I become an excellent Buddha With hundreds of thousands of samadhis, With inconceivable mantras, With all the powers and virtues Of Supreme Enlightenment.     Refuges and Precepts Namo Tassa Bhagavato Arahato Samma Sambuddhassa Namo Tassa Bhagavato Arahato Samma Sambuddhassa Namo Tassa Bhagavato Arahato Samma Sambuddhassa Buddham Saranam Gacchami Dhammam Saranam Gacchami Sangham Saranam Gacchami Dutiyampi Buddham Saranam Gacchami Dutiyampi Dhammam Saranam Gacchami Dutiyampi Sangham Saranam Gacchami Tatiyampi Buddham Saranam Gacchami Tatiyampi Dhammam Saranam Gacchami Tatiyampi Sangham Saranam Gacchami     Ten Precepts Panatipata Veramani Sikkhapadam Samadiyami Adinnadana Veramani Sikkhapadam Samadiyami Kamesu Micchacara Veramani Sikkhapadam Samadiyami Musavada Veramani...

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Refuge Puja
Feb15

Refuge Puja

 Devotional text focusing on Going for Refuge within the Triratna Buddhist Community.     A Buddha has arisen in this world! The Path to the Deathless is open! The true Sangha can yet be found Amongst mankind!   My own kind teacher Has brought the Three Jewels Even to me! Burning through the ages, The Dharma’s flame, Has lit the hearts of millions. Burning in that fire Many have attained The highest wisdom. Through their inspiration The flame of the Dharma Burns brightly now Even for me.   My gratitude overflows To the Buddha, To the great teacher Who taught the end of suffering In the bliss of understanding. I worship him with all I have. I offer him now These few flowers, This incense and these candles; Let them stand For all I will give. In gratitude to you, Oh Great Shakyamuni, I will make your name known Throughout the world. I will build countless temples, Shining with beauty, Where your gracious image Shall be enthroned, Where constant worship Shall be paid to you. In gratitude to you I shall bring to every land The pure essential Dharma. I shall make the sacred scriptures known In every human tongue. I shall myself expound Your wondrous teaching In beautiful, inviting words Which all may understand, Clearly expressing, Dharma’s true meaning. In gratitude to you I shall create Communities of friends, Devotees of the truth, Who together shall fulfil Your ideal of Sangha. Through my efforts, All mankind shall live In sight of the spiritual community, Able to unite with it When they wish. All this I shall do Out of wonder and gratitude For all you have given To all mankind, Even to me. You are the supreme one, To whom all life leads. For you have attained Life’s final meaning. You have all goodness, All truth and all love, Yes, all supreme virtues Are effortlessly yours. My life’s fulfilment Is found only in you. And all I can give you Is all that I am. My life from this moment Is an offering to you. Take it, Oh take it! Great Hero, please take it, All that I am I give now to you.     GRATITUDE TO OUR TEACHERS The Dharma has come even to me! How wonderful! A path has been opened Which I too can follow. My own precious teacher, Urgyen Sangharakshita, You have made it possible Even for me To follow the Buddha and his Dharma. My teacher, You have made the path so clear. You have created the Sangha Which I too can join. How wonderful! In gratitude to you I will do...

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Bodhicaryavatara Puja
Feb08

Bodhicaryavatara Puja

Image: Parinirvana Buddha, painted by Mahabodhi. Birmingham Buddhist Centre.     Devotional text derived from the Bodhicaryavatara by Shantideva.     WORSHIP In order to bring about the arising Of that precious jewel of the mind, The Bodhicitta, I offer worship to the Buddhas, And to the flawless jewel of the True Dharma, And to the sons of the Buddha, Who are oceans of virtue. I offer to them now As many flowers and fruits as there are in the world, As many healing herbs, As many jewels, And all waters, clear and refreshing. I offer mountains made of precious stones, And forest groves to be enjoyed in solitude, Vines blazing with flowers, And trees whose branches bend low With delicious fruit. I offer fragrances of the celestial realms, The wishing tree with fruits of jewels, Pools and lakes adorned with lotuses, And the endlessly fascinating cry of wild geese. I offer rich harvests, Both wild and those sown by men. I offer everything that can adorn Those worthy of worship, And I offer everything which no-one owns Within the limitless spheres of space. Conjuring all these in my imagination, I offer them to the incomparable sages And to their sons. Oh Compassionate ones, You who are worthy of the choicest gifts, Think kindly of me And accept these offerings of mine. Having no merit, I am destitute, And I have nothing else to offer. Oh Protectors, You who think only of helping others, Accept these for my sake. And I give myself to the Conquerors completely, And to their sons. Take possession of me, Oh Sublime Beings, In devotion I offer myself as your slave. Having become your possession I have nothing more to fear in existence; I act only for the welfare of all; I shall completely transcend my previous evils; And in the future shall commit no more. As your servant I shall bathe you In sweetly scented bathing chambers, Delighting the eye with pillars ablaze with gems, With brilliantly sparkling crystal floors, And with canopies above aglow with pearls. I myself shall prepare jeweled ewers Filled with water scented with fragrant flowers, And there let the Buddhas and their sons bathe, To the sound of singing to lovely instruments. With the finest cloths, fragrant and spotless, I will dry their bodies. Then let me offer them choice robes, Well-scented and dyed in beautiful hues. With celestial garments, Smooth and soft to the touch, Of many colours and beautifully ornamented, I adorn the Aryas Samantabhadra and Ajita, Manjughosa, Lokesvara and all the Great Ones. With the choicest perfumes Whose fragrance permeates the universe, I will anoint...

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Mindfulness and the four arrows
Jan05

Mindfulness and the four arrows

This article is adapted from a thread submitted to and published in Shabda, the in-house journal of the Triratna Buddhist Order, in October 2014. It addresses the issue of practising or promoting secular mindfulness within a Buddhist context, and in particular the Triratna context.   A series of meetings were held early in 2014 to talk about live issues for practice within the Triratna Buddhist Community (TBC) and one of the topics was ‘Mindfulness,’ specifically how secular mindfulness should be integrated into our Buddhist movement. I was not at this meeting but as I have been thinking independently about this topic for a number of years, I would like to share my views with you about it. First of all I would like to say that to the extent that secular mindfulness-based therapies help people overcome suffering I am completely behind them. The work that Breathworks do in this area is brilliant, and the fact that mindfulness and compassion are becoming valued in secular society is a good thing. Having said that, there are people who have voiced the concern that secular mindfulness lacks an ethical dimension, and the evidence they have given is that it is now being used in corporate business and by the military, whose ethics are often questionable.   I think the main reason why this is the case is because of something well known in religious education circles: the difference between a professional approach and a confessional one. A confessional teacher teaches their own faith to children of that faith, whereas whatever the beliefs of a professional teacher are, they have to teach as if all religions are equal options. So in this age – secular just means ‘of the age’ – in the West, in order to gain approval and funding, things have to be professionally presented, in the sense that they do not promote a particular value system, including a particular ethical system. So in this system you can teach mindfulness to soldiers to help them deal with their stress – ethics to do with personal health and well being are non-controversial – but you cannot teach them mindfulness in order that they don’t go round shooting people. That has to be left to their own consciences.   With our self designated project of bringing Buddhism to the West, what we are dealing with here is our main collective problem – in the sense Bhante means it: not a difficulty. This is our MAIN COLLECTIVE KOAN. How do you deal with the boundary between the actual values of the majority of society in the West and the values of Triratna Buddhism or...

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‘Curriculums, Exams and Degrees – How Do We Really Learn About Life?’
Mar26

‘Curriculums, Exams and Degrees – How Do We Really Learn About Life?’

A public talk at the Manchester Buddhist Centre in the ‘Buddhism and the Big Questions’ series   26th March 2011   In this talk I begin by briefly exploring two contrasting educational theorists who are influential today: John Locke proposed that the child was a ‘blank slate’ that could be written upon; and Jean Jacques Rousseau was an educationalist for whom the child was like a plant to be grown and nurtured. I then look at the influence on education of the contrasting twentieth century philosophies of Logical Positivism, which influenced the digital revolution, and Heidegger’s philosophy of Phenomenology, which puts a great emphasis on personal experience. I conclude by exploring how three Buddhist scriptures: the Satipatthana Sutta – which contains the Buddha’s main teaching on mindfulness, the Kalama Sutta and the Meghiya Sutta, all shed light on what would be an ideal Buddhist education. Watch video – 65 mins (45 Mb) 133 plays on Vimeo. Audio recording of this talk downloaded 916 times from Internet Archive as of 8 January 2014.                         Use PayPal to donate£5£10£25£100Other Amount: Your Email Address :   Donate here to help me carry on helping others  ...

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