To give a taste of what my new book Buddhist Wisdom Verses is like I include one of the 251 sections today. I include here also a reading of the text. These make for very good meditative reflections of the teaching, and you can see how they apply to yourself.
According to the traditional biography of Aśvaghoṣa, which was translated into Chinese by Kumārajīva, he was originally a wandering ascetic who was able to defeat all-comers in debate.
Here is a re-edited short appreciation of the Buddhacarita by Aśvaghoṣa by J.K. Nariman, which can be found in full on my Ancient Buddhist Texts website.
Here is a short discourse that is well worth time considering as it deals with right and wrong sorts of talk. You can use it as a kind of measure of your own concerns and ask yourself: are they in line with Dhamma or with adhamma?
Human beings possess the intelligence and wisdom to question their existence, how and why they are born in this world and about the meaning of life itself.
This is a beautiful recitation of a translation of the Heart Sūtra by Marina Lighthouse, along with some atmospheric black and white photographs from Borobudur and elsewhere.
The story is an interesting, if highly improbable, fable: a sage lives alone in the Himālayas, there is semen in the urine he passes, and a deer who happens to eat the grass in that place gets pregnant from it.
The Buddhist calendar calculations are based on the Lunisolar year. Important dates (like the Awakening) being commemorated on the Moon cycle, and the Moon cycle itself being adjusted to fit in with the Solar cycle.
Every second week, with the waxing and the waning of the moon Buddhist monks hold the uposatha meeting. If there are enough monks available then we will confess our offenses and the Pātimokkha will be chanted by one of the monks, while we sit together in unison.
When you read the Buddhist texts you are so amazed at the Buddha’s profound and deep statements about the human mind. It is amazing that he should have made these statements 2,600 years ago.
After five years of investigation, the Justice Department has released its findings regarding the government lawyers who authorized waterboarding and other forms of torture during the interrogation of suspected terrorists at Guantánamo Bay and elsewhere.
Although the story recorded here is not found in the Pāḷi Canon, nor to my knowledge, anywhere in the Canonical texts of the other schools, it has a certain verisimilitude that gives it some authenticity.
I include here a full transcript of Arundhati Roy’s speech, extracts of which provided the commentary to yesterday’s film. “The things I have to say are complicated, dangerous things in these dangerous times.”
The translation that follows is from a section of the Mahāvastu (Great Story) dealing with the period after Lord Buddha left the area where he had attained Awakening until he arrives at the place where he will give his first recorded teachings.
When I was at the Taiping Temple I became quite expert at quite quickly getting up what I hope were eye-catching and attractive posters in an attempt to interest people in our events.
“Impermanent indeed, are (all) processes, arisen they have the nature to decay, after arising they come to cessation, the stilling of them is blissful.”
As a follow up to yesterday’s post I am including this story about the young Bodhisatta and his cousin Devadatta. The story originally appear in the Abhinishkramanasutta, but the retelling here is by the Sri Lankan monk Ven. Sīlacāra.