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Archive for the ‘Temple’ Category

This lets you know where we are.

This lets you know where we are.

Am I a Buddhist?

Pauline in action.

Pauline in action.

Pauline’s post about Watt Buddharangsee, meaning Move or Change Places Temple, prompted me to think, All schools of Buddhism have the basic logical (Dharma) teachings of The Buddha. The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path.

This photo shows the wheel with eight spokes.

This shrine shows the wheel with eight spokes.

The countries of South East Asia that have adopted Buddhism have incorporated their own cultures and customs in it. This resulted in many different varieties of Buddhism.

Inside the Stupa.

Inside the Stupa showing a stained glass Buddha window.

Still the fundamental teachings are the same. To abstain from all kinds of evil, promote all that is beneficial and purify the mind.

Stupa out side.

Stupa out side.

To understand all things are impermanent and subject to change, abstain from all kinds of evil and personally develop ethical behaviour, as outlined in the Buddha’s basic teaching. Consequently there have been no major conflicts between different Buddhist religious groups.

Pauline put this photo in her post.

Pauline put this photo in her post.

The three major Abrahamic religions conversely are in aggressive conflict for domination. Regardless of the fact that their God, the one they claim to be almighty, condemns killing.

Why is this abandoned little church?

Why is this little church abandoned?

Perhaps Lau Tzu had it right when he said “The Tao that can be named is not the true Tao.” (The Tao is the inexplicable force that keeps the whole cosmos in equilibrium.) Another aspect of Taoism is yin and yang, when yin and yang are in balance it is believed to be perfect harmony. This is described as Wu Wei meaning in flow with nature.

The trees were an ideal setting for the Stupa.

The trees were an ideal setting for the Stupa.

I am not a Taoist, Buddhist, Hindu and defiantly not one of the many factions of the Abrahamic dogmas, Jews, Christians or Muslims with their multitude of denomination all arguing for dominance.

The trees looked good from all angles.

The trees looked good from all angles.

I believe they all have the same good basic ethics but much of the good is lost in the belief in the supernatural, other myths and wishful thinking.

The monks do not use a blower on the leaves.

The monks do not use a noisy blower on the leaves.

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Temple gate gards.

The Waking Dreamer.

The title could have been “The Waking Dreamer.” or “The Awake Dreamer.” because when I dreamed up the picture for this post I was wide awake. I was tired and relaxing uninterested in any activity so I was not focused and concentrating on anything. This is when the mind takes off on its own and if you are tired why not let it take over? If it starts to take you some where you would rather not go, do as you would in meditation take another deep breath and start concentrating on your breath.

Guarding four directions.

What is that noise? Then the thought popped into my mind and I let it run. People just do not understand shouting will do no good; you have to reason with people. The thoughts came racing, some will not listen, they think they are right, no it is their ego that is stopping them, maybe it is they have been told not to listen, that is not reason, that is unreasonable, we will never learn anything if we do not listen.

Beautiful Jesus staned glass,

Some religious people are like that, they are extremists, bigots, fanatics. My mind is racing now. These people are fundamentalists that give a religion a bad name. Why do they disagree, argue, fight, go against all moral decency and kill?

The om syllable a Hyndu symbol for Brahman.

Stop, it is time to cool down, relax take a deep breath, do not get all excited. This is the danger of letting the monkey mind takeover. One needs to be mindful of those uncontrolled thoughts. I then thought music could sooth the situation. The song ‘Imagine” came to mind, then the boy cow herder playing his flute and Shiva doing her dance, Buddha, Lao Tzu,  Confucius and Jesus could sing along I think most religions like singing.

Chinese temple Darwin.

All the heavenly angels and the like could gather in the heavens to listen. Some gods might find this a bit below them. But we could have a copy of the Creation of Adam that Michelangelo painted on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel as a back drop. What a superb fantasy, everyone invited to the greatest concert of all time. Hold on! Let’s not get too carried away, focusback to the breathing meditation.

Muslim art represinting Allah.

It is one thing to dream up a picture like this. How do I achieve my dream picture? I will do it with the help of the Photoshop program, I have no picture of the Creation of Adam so will use Google and the snippet tool. Even if my photos are not the best I always use them. The montage is going to be difficult to bring them all together in reality, harder still to bring them all together. Well it is not a bad way to pass the time and it is exercising the 80 year old brain, just like the body needs a work out, so does the brain. I have found the saying “use it or lose it“to be true.

Picture in Chinese Temple.

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A magic place mt Warning.

 

 

Buddhist temple repairs..

Living The Magic Life.

I talk to myself, what do I say? “What a wonderful day.

Life is grand.” I shake my own hand, “What a mighty land.”

I want to run to my magic place, no, there are things that need to be done,

 do your duty and let it be fun.

 

Demanding work art detail.

 

How can I play all day and make the work go away.

Attitude, work is play if we see it that way.

It is in our mind whether it is work or play.

 I can enjoy the day in a different way.

I want to run to my magic place.

I want to run but it is not a race.

The human race sets a stampede pace.

Concrete will be covered with coloured tiles.

Always wanting makes people rush, hurrying to where they want to be,

 they miss the good things they could see,on the way.

“Slow down.” I say “enjoy this day.”

It is up to you what you want to do. I choose to do what is required of me.

 It is like breathing, a necessity.

 Obligations and genuine needs are best done with delight,

 if you want to sleep sound at night.

Makes my work childs play.

 Life is a challenge to do your best;

 a job well done is like a test.

 The more you practice the better you do.

 Very soon work is fun to you.

Doing good work is the right way,

 to find contentment in your day.

No worry or strife free from desire, wanting and greed.

 We find there is pleasure in every deed.

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Chanting meditation.

Accept the Gift of Life.

There is nothing beautiful or grotesque in nature. The beauty or obscenity is in mans mind. As the pendulum swings there is a point where it pauses to return. When we breathe in there is an instant before we exhale this is where the life force resides. Grasping for the future or clinging to the past, we can miss this moment and this is all we have.

Into everyone’s hands nature impartially provides her gifts. Do we hurriedly grasp or do we savoir and enjoy? How a gift is received is our choice, how a complement or a criticism is received is also our choice. Everything is governed by our attitude. Our thoughts control our actions our actions in time become habits forming our character and our outlook on life. Try to see the good and beautiful in all you encounter.

Take the criticism objectively, if it helps us see our faults we can correct them, or if it is meant to hurt us we can smile knowing we have matured in our understanding. We have control over one thing in life our attitude we must not let the outside control inside. Peace is not to be in a place where there is no noise or distraction; it is to be in the midst of all this turbulence and still remain calm. Like a stormy sea, deep below the violent foaming waves there lays a calm and undisturbed peace.

Stilling the mind is the whole purpose of meditation, when the mind is still the whole universe surrenders. Take a deep breath focusing on the breath is one of the best ways to meditate. When the mind becomes distracted do not be put off, return to focusing on the breath.  In our everyday lives we let our mind jump from thought to thought this is an ingrained habit and is not easily overcome. With patient and constant meditation practice you will reach a stage where a few deep breaths will bring you back to a calm state.

There are many forms of breathing meditation. Hindus, Taoists and Buddhists all use the breath as a method. The beginner will find being aware of the breath as it enters and leaves the body natural and relaxing. Counting either each inhalation or exhalation up to the count of six breaths, is a good way to begin. Other techniques can be tried like focusing on an object or mantras, repeating sounds, words or phrases. The Sanskrit word Om is used by the Hindus as a mantra and is worth a try. Breathe in gently, and as you exhale, say Om as three sounds: a as in father, oo as in room and ‘mmm’ Try to feel the sounds vibrate in your body.

To become totally absorbed in any mundane activity is a form of meditation. When cleaning metal one can focus on the shine, note the beautiful way the light reflects, people smoke cannabis to tune in on this kind of thing, there is no need for this, or any other drug to find peace, pleasure and wonder in the world around us. A book by Thich Nhat Hanh called The Long Road Turns to Joy. Is about walking meditation, I like this man’s charming, uplifting writing.

Take a deep breath, set aside your stress and discomfort and focus only on good. You can find some quality of beauty and goodness or some redeeming feature in all situations by taking the time to look for the good. You can shift your awareness in this way and change your attitude by looking for the good in all you observe and every activity you do.

When you go rushing breathlessly from one thought to the next, anticipating another problem or hungering for another pleasure, you miss the joy of the present which is constantly unfolding before you. Meditation teaches you to slow down and awaken to the present moment.

The coming and going of our breath is vital to our existence to spend some time contemplating this fact has many rewards helping us to realize that the past is history, a memory and the future a fantasy on the movie screen of our mind and actually a mystery yet to unfold. Relish what you are doing, savor the flavor when you eat, chew every morsel feel the texture smell the aroma enjoy the look.

A person in a hurry, agitated or angry does not taste or enjoy the food it is just devoured and not appreciated. Some people say words of thanks in appreciation for the food they receive. This is a good practice to be thankful but words are not as convincing as actions. So calm down your mind and your body will follow, enjoy the simple pleasures life and nature offers. With this wisdom the balance of the entire universe will fall into place. All things will be just as they are neither good nor bad.

Beautfully relaxed.

 

Smiling gum tree.

 

Banksia and gum nuts.

 

The Banksia Flower.

 

I love a sun burnt country

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“Enter the Eight Fold Path and put an end to sorrow.” The Buddha said.

The path is not easy to follow it takes understanding, perseverance and self discipline. Each person must work out his or her own salvation,       without divine aid.

The Buddha said: “By oneself alone is evil done, by oneself is one defiled.By oneseff is evil avoided,by oneself  is one purified, impurity depends on oneself, no one can purify another.”

Right understanding is the first step on the Eight Fold Path. To understand The Four Noble Truths is right understanding. The first truth is life is dukkha, dukkha has no equivalent meaning in English, to describe it as pain and suffering is misleading.  Life is unsatisfactory because every thing in life is subject to change, because of this fact nothing gives us permanent satisfaction. Not realising this we want and cling to impermanent things, this is the cause of much of our pain and sorrow.  

 The second noble truth:  the cause of suffering is ignorance, greedily wanting and clinging to pleasurable things, and fearing and avoiding the opposite, causing suffering.

The third noble truth:  there is a remedy to these problems.

The fourth noble truth: to follow the Eight fold Path. Some times called the Middle way because it is a way of moderation and balance. the Buddha knew from experience that a life of indulgence did not bring contentment and a life of abstinence and suffering did not bring salvation. after questioning and searching and meditating, stilling his mind, applying deep thought, The Buddha came to true understanding or enlightenment, the basic truth and the ethical path that leads to the end of sorrow.

There is nothing supernatural about this. Over the years folk laws have been built up around the Buddha and his teaching by his followers. The Buddha said ” do not follow my teaching without question. Follow follow truth and goodness where ever it be found”.  

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