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  • Writer's pictureJohnny

Tired Thursday

The Only Way to Buddhahood

I wish I could say that today was as thoughtful of a day as yesterday, but it wasn't. Work is already making me very tired. During my breaks I read "The Way to Buddhahood" which is a book I've been trying to read for months. In all of the Buddhist books that I've read, this has to be the most direct one. It's written as if this is the only way to enlightenment, with simple authoritative language.

"One can attain and manifest all virtues through one's own body and mind"

-The Way to Buddhahood, p. 28

After much reading about the Three Treasures and taking refuge in them. I finally found a paragraph that contained the wisdom that I was looking for. It talked about how taking refuge in the Three Treasures (Buddha, the teachings, and the "Sangha") really means taking refuge in yourself. How its all about self reliance and self cultivation that leads to your "true/buddha nature".

Once I read this, I was reminded of another talk that was had at the summer camp.

Another Lesson

"...if one is able to practice the true Dharma [Teachings] through self-reliance and self-cultivation, and if one does not think that, 'relying on Buddha...I do not need to practice,' then one is in accord with the real meaning of taking refuge."

-The Way to Buddhahood, p. 28

Shi Heng Yi explained to us in one talk that Buddhism is a religion of experience. There are many sutras and teachings within Buddhism but until you have experienced what is taught or discussed within, you do not have to accept them. Blindly accepting them would be faith, where learning about them and then experiencing them is... experience. The basic example he gave was the rule that most people know about when it comes to Buddhism which is, "In life there is suffering", the first of the Noble Truths. Shi Heng Yi said that some people stop there because they don't agree, which is fine. But he continued and gave examples of why he agreed with it.

📿You stub your toe, that is suffering.

📿You see how much you have to pay in taxes, that is suffering.

📿You don't get what you want, that is suffering.

📿Someone you know dies, that is suffering.

It is this idea of experience that is supposed to make Buddhism so unique, according to Shi Heng Yi. This is also why there are so many different kinds of monks/buddhists. You have normal "lay people", you have monks that can get married and others that can't, you have warrior monks and meditation monks. All are trying to find their own path that gets them to... enlightenment, heaven, nirvana. Whatever you want to call it.

And if you read some stories, there have, supposedly, been many people who have found enlightenment through various ways.

What way will be yours?

📿 Johnny

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