"Therefore, the Buddha firmly pointed out that to stop the great suffering of birth and death, confusion... should be eliminated."
-The Way to Buddhahood, pg. 138
It all began with me reading quite a bit of "The Way to Buddhahood". I began stretching but the passages that I read really had my mind going. Most of what I read was about the cycle of suffering or the cycle of birth and death. Like, how does the cycle keep repeating itself and what are we supposed to do to stop it. There was a little bit more about the idea of the self not existing but... I need to reread it again in order to understand it.
Self Enlightenment ~ 無師独悟
While the thoughts racked through my brain, I began stretching which made me think of Shaolin. So I looked up the Shaolin Lineage Poem, from there I found out the past abbot who wrote it. While reading about him I read an interesting page about an Indian Monk who started the Shaolin Temple, named Batuo, before Bodhidharma ever arrived.
The thing that always gets me about the Bodhidharma story is that he didn't bring Kung Fu to the monks. He gave the monks Yi Jin Jing and Xi Sui Jing. What I found interesting about my new readings was that Batuo actually had two disciples, both were military generals, which means that Shaolin was introduced to martial arts before Bodhidharma. The temple probably didn't train or adopt anything from the two generals but it was still there.
From there I ended up reading about all the different kinds of Buddhism. Good lord, its just as complicated as all the different kinds of Christianity out there. So many different rules, so many different texts. It seems too complicated, almost too complicated. Then, I end up reading about the idea of self enlightenment which is interesting to me as, from what I read, it can happen but a lot of masters don't give much credit to those that claim this.
I don't know, it all seems so confusing.
Written on Wednesday Night