Buddhism A La Mode

Its been a long time since the last post, really long! I only really started this blog as a school project but as I found over 107,000 people had viewed my blog, I decided that maybe it could turn into something bigger!

A recently posted video has caused the Buddhism Body of Thailand to start an international investigation in rooting out Buddhist monks who do not live up to the true spirit of Buddhism. The video shows a couple of Buddhist monks, flying in a private jet. Not only did the monks fly in a private jet but they had fancy aviators on and frankly, they don’t look like what Id imagine a monk to look and behave like.

Buddhism a la mode

However, on the other hand, with modern technology it might be easier for the monks to get from place to place, to spread their ideas and be able to give lectures and stir the souls of the masses in many more places. Also, maybe these guys just want to have some fun, though, their religion and supposed simple lifestyle is supposed to be amusing enough for them, hence, their decision to become and stay a Buddhist monk!

I’ll let you guys decide! Watch the video here:

And let me know what you think!

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The Daily Schedule of a Buddhist Monk

This is a schedule that I found on the internet of the schedule of a Buddhist monk. Just try to imagine yourself in the Monks’ places.

The usual daily routine of the monks is:

1. 5.45 Wake-up Bell

2. 6.00 to 7.00 Morning Prayer (Puja [prayer] in the prayer hall with breakfast)

3. 7.30 to 9.00 Recitation and memorizing of the prayer/ritual texts

4. 9.00 to 10.00 Tibetan Language Class

5. 10.00 to 11.00 English Language Class

6. 11.30 to 13.00 Lunch Break

The monks having their lunch on the veranda

7. 13.00 to 14.00 Tibetan Language Class

8. 14.00 to 15.00 Revision of the day’s lesson

9. 15.00 Tea Break

10. 15.00 to 17.00 Revision of recitation and memorization of the prayer/ritual texts

11. Break

12. 19.00 to 21.00 Evening Prayer and Recitations

13. 21.00 to 21.30 Self study

14. 21.30 Bed and light off

Young monks outside their domitory

Did Jesus Christ Learn Buddhism?

 

This theory started out with Nikolai Notovich travelling in India, where he discovered an ancient manuscript. The manuscript was translated and it told of a young boy called ‘Isa’ who was born in the 1st century to a poor family in Israel. He came to India when he was 14, where he learned the rules and teachings of Buddhism. He returned to Israel when he was 29. This is interesting because there isn’t any record of Jesus in Palestine, during the period from when he was 14 to 29 years old. Jesus’ teachings were also very similar to that of Buddha’s.

What do you think?

Buddhists and Disaster in Japan

http://politifi.com/news/Churches-In-Japan-Devastated-By-Earthquake-1751602.html

The article above explains the natural disasters that have occurred in Japan. It also explains that many temples/churches have been wiped out. At this time, many Buddhists must be meditating to relax and find peace amidst such chaos. The Christians must be praying for the well-being others and for themselves, to the Messiah . In another article that I read, it asked the question, “What would Siddhartha Gautama (creator of Buddhism) do if he had found out what happened in Japan?”

Most people answered saying that he would meditate for a long period of time to find an answer to end other peoples’ sufferings.

What would you answer to this question?

Buddhism Sayings

Below, I compiled a list of important Buddhism sayings and quotes:

Do not speak- unless it improves on silence.

You can explore the universe looking for somebody who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself,
and you will not find that person anywhere.

Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much
as your own unguarded thoughts.

Conquer the angry man by love.
Conquer the ill-natured man by goodness.
Conquer the miser with generosity.
Conquer the liar with truth.

The fool thinks he has won a battle when he bullies with harsh speech,
but knowing how to be forbearing alone makes one victorious.

Having a wider heart and mind is more important than having a larger house.

Happiness does not come from having much, but from being attached to little.

So, the tendency of our childish nature is to take small things too seriously and get easily offended, whereas when we are confronted with situations which have long-term consequences, we tend to take things less seriously

Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile,
but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.

Anything that is created must sooner or later die.

All happiness comes from the desire for others to be happy.
All misery comes from the desire for oneself to be happy.

A sick body with a good heart is more beneficial to future lives than a fit, healthy body that is used for self-cherishing.

 

 

 

10 Main Buddhists Festivals

There are quite a few Buddhists festivals. Here are some festivals and what they are about:

1) Buddhist New Year
In some countries like Thailand, Burma, Sri Lanka, Cambodia and Lao, the new year is celebrated for three days from the first full moon day in April.

2) Vesak
This festival celebrates the Birthday of Buddha. In one day, the Buddhists celebrate the birth, enlightenment and death of Buddha. This festival takes place on the first full moon of May.

3) Magha Puja Day
Magha Puja Day takes places on the full moon day of the third lunar month (March). This holy day is to commemorate an important event in the life of the Buddha, the fourfold assembly.

4) Asalha Puja Day
Asalha Puja means to honor Buddha on the full moon day of the 8th lunar month (approximately July). It recalls and shows respect to the Buddha’s first teaching.

5) Uposatha
The four holy days in each month. These holy days are during the new moons, full moons and quarter moons. On these days the Buddhists fast (they don’t eat at all).

6) Kathina Ceremony
In this ceremony new robes are offered to Buddhists monks.

7) Abhidhamma Day
This day celebrates the event when the Buddha is said to have gone to the Heaven to teach his mother. It is held on the full moon of April.

8) Songkran
This Buddhist festival goes on for several days during the middle of April. People clean their houses and wash their clothes and enjoy sprinkling perfumed water on the monks. This festival is like a spring cleaning!

9) Loy Krathong
This festival takes place on the full moon night of the Twelfth Lunar month. People bring bowls made of leaves, which contain flowers, candles and incense sticks. People float them in water and as they go, all bad luck is suppose to disappear.

10) The Ploughing Festival
This festival takes place in May, when the moon is half-full, two white oxen pull a gold painted plough, followed by four girls dressed in white who throw rice seeds from baskets. This is to celebrate the Buddha’s first moment of enlightenment, which happened when Buddha was seven years old, when he had gone with his father to watch the ploughing.










9 Facts about Buddhism

Here are some interesting facts about Buddhism:

1) Buddhists go to temple, not at a special time or day, but when they can.

2) It is commom for Buddhists to go on a full moon day.

3) A Buddhist temple is called Vihara and is a place for education. In a temple, you will find a shrine room with a large Buddha and statues of his disciples.You will also find relics and manuscripts. There is also a lecture room, meditation room and a library.

4) Shoes are removed before entering a temple for respect for Buddha.

5) Buddha is known as a teacher not a god.

6) Candles and incense sticks are lit and Buddhists recite verses in the Vihara.

7) Flowers and food are placed on the front of the Buddhist Statue. The flowers are to remind the person that they will not live forever.

8) The food is given to the Monks since they own nothing of their own and Buddhists feel that giving food will help them reach Nirvana

9) The following principles are said to help Buddhists to act well: 1. Not to hurt living things, 2. Do not take avantage of what is not there, 3. Use senses correctly, 4. Speak kindly, and, 5. Do not take or use drugs or alcohol.

The Origin of Buddhism

Buddhism came from Hinduism. It started from a young man named Siddhartha Gautama. He was born in 560 B.C and his father owned a part of the Himalayas. His father always kept him away from the real world and for most of his childhood Siddhartha was surrounded by only the good things of life. But one day Siddhartha decided to explore the world outside and there were 4 things that made him realize how bad the world was: An old man, a sick man, a dead man and a beggar. This made him leave the palace walls for searching for the answer to the problem of pain and suffering. He then studied Hinduism under a Brahmin priest, but he became disillusioned from all of the scriptures of Hinduism. After this he resorted to asceticism, which is the practice of one depriving himself of worldly pleasures and that will allow him to reach a high state of intelligence and spirituality. At one point Siddhartha was said to be able to live on one grain of rice per day. However, Siddhartha eventually became disappointed with the results of asceticism too. He said that it does nothing but wear the body out and he knows as he was only bones by the time he gave up asceticism. Siddhartha then sat under a Bodhi tree (fig tree), which is known as the tree of wisdom and he started to meditate. During meditation he reached the highest level of God-consciousness, which is known as Nirvana. This made Gautama famous and from then on he was known as Buddha, “The Enlightened One”. In Nirvana, Buddha could find all the answers to the problems of pain and suffering. He set up a school to teach Buddhism and soon enough there were a large amount of followers in India. After Buddha died, Buddhism leaked into other parts of Asia, mostly China. Today, Buddhism is the dominating religion in the eastern parts of Asia, all thanks to Siddhartha and 4 men.

http://www.leaderu.com/orgs/probe/docs/buddhism.html

 

The Dalai Lama

6/02/11- The Dalai Lama is a leader of the ‘Yellow Hat’ branch of Buddhism officials. Naturally the Dalai Lama is also Buddhist. In religion the Dalai Lama is believed by his followers to be a reincarnation or rebirth of a line of Tuluks who are forms of Bodhisattva (Enlightened ones). Note that Dalai Lama is a title and it isn’t only one person but its actually a reincarnation of 14 people. The Dalai Lama now is Tenzin Gyatso, who is in the picture above. He was born in 1935 and he was recognized as the Dalai Lama when he was 15 years old. Just imagine how hectic his life would’ve been at that time. Anyways, the first Dalai Lama was Gendun Drup. He was born in 1391 and he died in 1474. From the 17th century to 1959, the Dalai Lamas were so infuential that they sometimes even directed the Tibetian Government!

The current Dalai Lama indicates that he may be the last Dalai Lama but if that’s not true he said that the next Dalai Lama will be a female that is not from Tibet.

Shaolin Monks

I always thought that Shaolin monks had their own special religion, like shaolinism or something but recently I just found out that they practice Buddhism too. What a great way to start my blog!

30 January 2011:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VdwKHel7RM0&playnext=1&list=PL4672C0A35D7343D5

This video is pretty interesting. There is one thing I don’t get, it says the 5 basic commandments of Buddhism are killing, robbery, sex, wine and lies. Does this mean that the monks are forbidden to do these things or what?

I’m guessing that they’re forbidden to do these things since Buddhists are pretty peaceful people but then that means that nearly everyone is breaking one of the commandments as sex is the only way the newer generations will arise. This is confusing me :/

 

31 January 2011:

http://www.rising-dragon.co.uk/articles/martial-arts/origins-of-shaolin-kung-fu.htm

This is an amazing article that shows the origins of Shaolin Kung Fu. Shaolin Kung Fu is credited to an Indian monk called Tat Moh. Tat Moh was a prince in the south of India but he wanted to be devoted to Buddhism and live a simple life of a monk. For this reason he went to China and taught Buddhism to the very eager Chinese people. In fact, it was very common for Indian Buddhists to go to China with their teachings. So Tat Moh created a temple called ‘Shaolin’ for his disciples but he was very disappointed as the Chinese buddhists were too weak to stand the harsh living standards of a monk. After recognizing this he retreated into a cave for meditating and finding a resolution. After 9 years, he finally came out with a set of exercises and self defense techniques that were closely related to Indian yoga for the other monks. Eventually the monks took this and advanced it further, creating new forms of Shaolin. This eventually lead to the “White Crane” form of Shaolin, which is the most respected type of Shaolin Kung Fu.

I found another video, this time with the monk in action. Keep in mind that the monk is the one in the yellow uniform.

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