Tuesday, February 13, 2018

REL 205 Buddhism

Rowan College Blackboard





Finally, as part of your daily Discussion participation you will produce a one-paragraph answer to your self-assigned section. Bring a hard copy to class to discuss with your small group and send a text file through Bb.

Buddhism World View Chart due 1 March, 11:59 pm.


The life and legend of the Buddha

The Dharma

Branches of Buddhism

Buddhism in the West

Socially Engaged Buddhism

Group Learning Objectives:

By last name you will be arranged in groups of four.

You will collaborate with your colleagues in your group by self-assigning any of 4 sections from the Fieser, Buddhism section.

Also, each of you within your group should self assign two of the eight categories from the World View Chart. 

You will report back to your group during the next two class sessions about what you were self-assigned.
            Fieser, Buddhism
            97 Buddhism
            97 Introduction
            111 The Life of the Buddha

Siddhartha became the Buddha, his formal title. He was born a Hindu prince and had all his needs met. However, throughout his life he experienced the suffering of his people as well as other worldly things. While meditating he realized that all life was special and that there was enormous suffering going on in the world. He learned that through meditation and finding one’s self was the way to achieve peace. He planned to sit and meditate under the Bodhi tree until he had died, but the god Brahma convinced him to share his knowledge with the world and so he did.
            114 Pāli Canon
            114 The First Sermon

The Buddha's first sermon is allegedly his first public teaching as spoken at Sarnath. It lays out some of the basest ideals of the Buddhist religion, such as the discovery of the "middle path" to calm, peace, and 'nirvana'. It discusses the eight rights, as well as the idea that life itself is suffering, and that true peace is to come to terms with this and then detach oneself from the suffering. The Buddha is alleged to have given this sermon to five monks and former companions of his who were seeking enlightenment in more traditional ways. The Buddha finishes his sermon by declaring that he has reached the point at which his mind will be liberated, and that this will be his last rebirth. 

            115 The Buddha’s Good Qualities

For a Buddhist, the Buddha is not just a significant person who taught but the events of his life should serve as a way for all Buddhists to live. They see Buddha as the best example of how meditative realization should be put into practice in everyday life. 

From one of the texts, the Digha-nikaya , Buddha renounces the killing of living beings. He lives modestly, mercifully, giving compassion and welfare for all things. The Buddha has also renounced taking what is not given to him, therefore he accepts what is given to him and waits for it to be given; and lives honestly and purely. 

The Buddha also lives a life of celibacy and considers the desire for sexual intercourse vulgar. The Buddha abstained from lying, only speaking the truth and is a trustworthy person; therefore the Buddha also renounces slander and abstains from libel. He brings together those that are divided by strife and encourages those who are friends. Buddha takes pleasure in peace, he loves it, and when Buddha speaks, he speaks words that will help make peace. Since Buddha only speaks peace, he avoids abusive speech and gossip. He speaks at the right times, only speaking the facts, with the right words, speaking the truth (dhamma), and of discipline (vinaya). Buddha’s speeches are memorable, timely, well illustrated, measured, and to the point. The Buddha also renounces doing any harm to seeds or plants.

He only eats one meal per day and does not eat at night. He abstains from watching shows or attending fairs with “song, dance, and music.” He does not wear ornaments, or adorn himself with garlands, scents, or cosmetics. Buddha will also not use a large or high bed and will not accept silver or gold, or raw grain or raw meat. 

He also abstains from taking any slaves, male or female, child or adult, any animal, or any property. Buddha will not be a middleman either, abstaining from buying and selling, and from falsifying scales, weights, or measures. Therefore, Buddha is against bribery, cheating, and fraud. Buddha will also be against injury, murder, bondage, stealing, and acts of violence.
            117 Criteria for Assessing Valid Teachings and Teachers
            117 Nirvana

Nirvana is the ultimate end of suffering; a state beyond the cycle of birth and death. The word Nirvana refers to the extinguishing of the fires of greed, hatred and delusion. When these emotional and psychological defilements are destroyed by wisdom, the mind becomes free, radiant and joyful and at death one is no longer subject to rebirth. "One thing and only one thing do I teach, suffering and the cessation of suffering Buddha once said. It would seem therefore that Nirvana is neither complete nothingness nor non-existence. One thing is certain though, it is not a heaven state and it is not the absorption of the individual soul into an absolute, an idea that is more relative to Hinduism. However, the Buddha's saying that "Nirvana is the ultimate happiness, makes it clear that it is a worthwhile goal. Nirvana is not an object that one acquires by wanting and then pursuing, rather it is the state of being utterly without wanting.
            118 Dependent Arising
            119 Questions that Should be Avoided
            122 Selflessness

Buddhism teaches that the soul does not present an importance daily.  Instead, the tradition directs its importance to the fives aggregates which are form, feelings, discrimination, and  composition.  These five factors are given attention due to a mutual quality: they all share selflessness. For example, “this is not mine,this is not I, this is not myself”(122).  Buddhists are liberated leading to heightened awareness. Overall, selflessness is a key character trait in practicing Buddhism.

               123 Instructions on Meditation

In practicing Buddhism, it is very important to follow the example of the Buddha. Meditation is critical because the means to attaining clarity of perception, eliminating mental afflictions, and escaping from cyclic existence. The passage points out instructions on how to properly meditate. It mentions how you should know how much to eat. The individual should not overeat or love food or have a desire for food but to eat only to overcome hunger. The passage describes sleep and how you should direct yourself back to exertion and steadfastness, strength and courage, and to also read texts and teach them.
            125 Ordination of Women

When Buddha first began his teachings there was no women disciples, but eventually women began their ordination. According to scripture the Mahapajapati Gotami went to the Lord and suggested that it would be a good idea for woman to become followers of Buddha’s teachings. Mahapajapati Gotami left the Lord swollen and crying, because he refused to allow women to follow his teachings. Another women, Anada approached the Lord to ask again if women could be initiated into the religion. Buddha then agreed to allow the initiation of women, just under a few rules, those women are able to receive the sacred fruits. They won over Buddha and then the initiation of women into this religion was now allowed.
            127 The Cessation of Suffering

After the Buddha agreed to create an order of nuns he was approached by one woman in particular. This woman was not a member of monastery and was not a nun. This woman’s entire family was killed one by one, each in a more drastic and tragic manner. This woman then approached the Buddha to ask him why if she was following his teachings that she was still suffering from the memories of her lost loved ones. She confided in the Buddha, attempting to find salvation from her sufferings. In an attempt to help this woman soothe her troubles the Buddha offered that she come to the monastery and become a nun. It was once she joined the monastery that she realized the error of her ways. She realized upon living with the other nuns that they only way that she could be free of suffering was to remove her attachment to worldly things. It was only after she gave up all possessions and niceties that she was able to turn her mind off like one turns of a wick to a lamp.
            128 My Teacher
            128 The Joy of Release

In this poem, a young mother, married to a poor umbrella maker, runs from her family and becomes a nun. Over time, she reached the level of Arhathood, and celebrates with happiness. Arhat means someone (Monk) who reaches enlightenment (Nirvana). She screams, “Free, I am free!” and goes on about how she no longer has to deal with her worthless husband and his umbrellas. She’s relieved to never have to deal with a kitchen anymore and her desires and hatred are gone. She goes to the base of a tree and enjoys her happiness while it lasts.
            129 The Buddha’s Last Days and Final Instructions
            130 The Questions of King Milinda
            132 How to Avoid Extreme Views
Buddhaghosa describes the perception of reality as examining the five aggregates (form, sensations, perceptions, mental activity, and consciousness) and concluding that there is no “being”, but rather just name and form. He continues that if someone refuses to perceive this way, they believe a “being” exists. If they believe a being exists, they must then believe that it will never perish (the extreme view of permanence) or that it will perish (the extreme view of nihilism). According to the Buddha, those two views are incorrect. He speaks of those who have “the eye of the truth”, who sees the five aggregates as they are and practices in order to become disgusted and have no desire of them so then they might cease to exist. If one has “the eye of the truth”, they are considered to be perceiving reality and existence correctly.
            133 Mahāyāna Scriptures
            133 The Heart of Perfect Wisdom Discourse
            135 Excerpts from the Diamond Sūtra
            136 Why Bodhisattvas are Superior to Hearers
            137 Why the Bodhisattva Works Alone
            139 On the Differences between Men and Women
            142 The Lotus Sūtra: Parable of the Burning House
            145 Just War Principles

There is no justification of war in Buddhist teaching. Though Buddhists view war as unskillful and evil, throughout history some Buddhist schools and monks have been associated with wartime practices. For example, Zen Buddhism and samurai customs were intersected between the 1930s and 1940s.
            146 Everything is Controlled by the Mind

The text "Everything is Controlled by The Mind" is about the influence one’s mind has on a person’s life and karma. The text explains that a fully aware one can better understand the world that revolves around them. Having a better perception will help individuals built good or bad karma. The text explains that the mind is a vast world and only does in control of it can control their outside world. Individuals should have open minds to know how to enjoy their good deeds and then to establish good karma. 

            146 The Base Consciousness
            147 Nāgārjuna on Emptiness
            149 The Bodhisattva’s Vows of Universal Love
            149 Tantric Skill in Means
            150 The Stage of Completion
            150 Unbounded Action
            151 Women Should be Honored
            152 Saṃsāra and Nirvana are One

Within Buddhism the end goal is spiritual purpose, Nirvana, and the ordinary cycle of life, death and rebirth, called Samsara. To the Buddhist, there is no fundamental difference between Samara and Nirvana. Material things to the Buddhist are trivial in both. During life, death, rebirth and spiritual awakening, one must separate their mind from their body to achieve serenity.
            152 Using Desire to Eradicate Desire
            153 The State of Pure Awareness
            153 The Importance of the Guru
            154 Tibetan Buddhist Scriptures
            154 Ultimate Reality
            155 Bardo, the State between Lives

According to “Liberation through Hearing in the Intermediate State” the intermediate state is called bardo which translates to “the between” that’s where all the beings enter after death. In the bardo state, beings experience strange and terrifying sights, deafening sounds, and other intense experiences. The intermediate state is a great opportunity to become a buddha or at least attain rebirth, as long as one can maintain awareness and focus on the clear light nature of mind and perceive all experiences as merely aspects of mind. If one is unable to achieve it, then one will be reborn in accordance with one’s accumulated karma.
            156 Milarepa on Meditation
            156 Niguma on Mahāmudrā
            157 Instructions from Mañjuśrī
            158 The Triple Appearance
            158 Developing the Mind of Awakening
            159 Chinese and Japanese Buddhist Scriptures
            159 The One Mind
            160 The Platform Sūtra of the Sixth Patriarch
            162 Kūkai: Exoteric and Esoteric Buddhism
            164 Dōgen’s Meditation Instructions
            165 The Mu Kōan
            166 Pure Land: Shinran on Amida’s Vow
            168 Truth Decay: Nichiren on the Title of the Lotus Sūtra

Bodh Gaya: center of the Buddhist world, 3:00


Read: Chapter 5: Buddha



Buddha/Buddhism References:

The Teachings of the Compassionate Buddha by E. A. Burtt, NAL Trade (2000).

Buddha and the Gospel of Buddhism by Ananda K. Coomaraswamy, Harper Torchbooks (1964).

Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse, Other authors: Hilda Rosner (Translator), New Directions Publishing Corporation (1951).

Buddhism: Its Essence & Development by Edward Conze, Harper (1975).
For Theravada:

Buddhism in Translations by Henry Clarke Warren, Atheneum Publishers (1970).

4. The Birth of the Buddha, pp. 46-47, Conze

Here is the story of how the Buddha, at birth, announced himself.


13. Questions Which Tend Not for Edification, pp. 120-121, Conze

This relates how the Buddha answered questions when he did not always provide the answers.

For Mahayana:

Selected Writings of Nichiren by Philip Yampolsky, Columbia University Press (1990).

The Lotus Sutra in Japanese Culture by George Joji Tanabe, Other authors: Willa Jane Tanabe, University of Hawaii Press (1989).

The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch by Hui-neng, Other authors: Philip Yampolsky (Translator), Columbia University Press (1978).

And, obviously, for Nagarjuna (below).

Nagarjuna: The Philosophy of the Middle Way (SUNY Series in Buddhist Studies) by David J. Kalupahana, State Univ of New York Pr (1986).

Zen Buddhism by Daisetz T. Suzuki, Other authors: William Barrett, Three Leaves (1996).

Scripture of the Lotus Blossom of the Fine Dharma: The Lotus Sutra (Records of Civilization: Sources and Studies) by Leon Hurvitz, Columbia University Press (1976).

Buddhist Religions: A Historical Introduction (Religious Life in History) by Richard H. Robinson, Other authors: Willard L. Johnson, Thanissaro Bhikkhu, Wadsworth Publishing (2004).

Dhammapada by P. Lal, Farrar Straus Giroux (1967).

Zen Flesh Zen Bones: A Collection of Zen and Pre-zen Writings by Paul Reps, Other authors: Nyogen Senzaki, Tuttle Publishing (1998).

p. 18, #14

Muddy Road

This is an interesting tale about monks and females and how to treat them.

“14. Muddy Road

Tanzan and Ekido were once traveling together down a muddy road. A heavy rain was still falling.

Coming around a bend, they met a lovely girl in a silk kimono and sash, unble to cross the intersection.

"Come on, girl," said Tanzan at once. Lifting her in his arms, he carriedher over the mud.

Ekido did not speak again until that night when they reached a lodging temple. Then he could no longer restrain himself. "We monks don't go near females," he told Tanzan, "especially not young and lovely ones. It is dangerous. Why did you do that?"

"I left the girl there," said Tanzan. "Are you still carrying her?”

Nyogen Senzaki, Zen Flesh, Zen Bones: A Collection of Zen and Pre-Zen Writings 

The Buddhist Tradition: In India, China and Japan by William Theodore De Bary, Vintage (1972).
Buddhist Texts Through the Ages (Oneworld Classics in Religious Studies) by Edward Conze, Oneworld Publications (1995).


Nagarjuna: The Philosophy of the Middle Way (SUNY Series in Buddhist Studies) by David J. Kalupahana, State Univ of New York Pr (1986).

Buddhism FisherBriefPPT_Ch5_JAT.ppt

Key Terms in Buddhism:

  • anatman:  the state of non-soulness that, according to the Buddha, was the natural state of humanity

  • arhat:  state of sainthood in Buddhism

  • Dalai Lama:  Leader of Tibetan Buddhism and, until 1950, the spiritual and political ruler of Tibet

  • koan:  literally means, "case study"; a riddle, tale, or short statement used by Zen masters to bring students to sudden insight

  • Mahayana:  literally means, "the expansive way," or "the big raft"; the largest branch of Buddhism

  • Nirvana:  literally means, "blowing out," or "extinguish"; cessation of human individuality and suffering

  • Pure Land Buddhism:  version of Mahayana Buddhism popular in Japan; it teaches that its devotees can achieve a paradise, called the 'Pure Land of the West,' after their deaths

  • Sangha:  Buddhist monastic order

  • tanha:  desire, thirst, or craving; a concept identified by Buddha as that which causes suffering

  • Theravada:  literally means, "the tradition of the elders"; the smaller branch of Buddhism

  • Zen Buddhism:  Form of Mahayana Buddhism that teaches that the real truth about life comes from intuitive flashes of insight

  • Buddhism Overview

    Brief History, Contemporary Situation, Geographical History, Basic Tenets & Practices, and Sacred Texts.


    Buddhism A Separate Peace: Basic Principles




    Bodhi Tree, :47



    Lord Buddha Stories - The Life of Buddha - Beginning of the Journey - Animated Stories for Kids, 6:45
    Buddha stories, stories for children, the life of buddha, kids stories, stories for kids, short stories for kids, animation cartoon, moral stories,animation stories, animated cartoon stories, bedtime stories..

    Lord Buddha Stories - Beginning of Journey -
    The calm and compassionate face of the Buddha is known all over the world. Buddha was a spiritual teacher of ancient India whose ideas on freeing mankind from sorrow and suffering form the basis of Buddhism. Buddha was born in the sixth century BC., into a royal family. Known as Siddhartha, he realized that human life was short and full of sadness. He found out a path to Enlightenment and spiritual fulfillment. He was then known as the Buddha,which means "Enlightened One". For the rest of his life, the Buddha travelled great distances teaching people about the "MIDDLE PATH", the way to end to suffering. He taught the four Noble Truths of suffering, cause of suffering, end of suffering, and the Path to do that. Buddhism offers hope and access to spiritual understanding and satisfaction to everybody. Throughout the world today, people still follow the teaching of the Buddha.
    Siddhartha encounters four unexpected sights which make him think of a way out of the sorrowful world.

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    Tales of Ganesha -

    Hitopadesha Tales -

    Akbar and Birbal Stories -


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    Masterpiece: The Buddha Triumphing over Mara
    The main figure in this stone sculpture from the 900s shows many characteristic features of images of the Buddha. Here we see elements that tell us we're in the presence of the Buddha as he was on the threshold of achieving enlightenment. Above his head are branches of heart-shaped leaves. They indicate the sacred bodhi tree, under which he is said to have attained enlightenment some 2,500 years ago, 3:05


    View the Other Preparation Materials

    View the lectures contained in the course shell

    Participate in the Discussion titled "Noble Action, Sacred Call, or Desire"

    Complete and submit the World View Chart Assignment

    Standing Buddha statue at the Tokyo National Museum. One of the earliest known representations of the Buddha, 1st–2nd century CE.

    Buddhism A Separate Peace: Beginnings of Buddhism, :34

    Brief introduction to the origin of Buddhism and its expansion into many countries.


    Buddhism India


    A short documentary on the stupa, a hemispherical mound that represents the burial mound of the Buddha, 4:29



    Theravada, :56


    Tamil Muslims (Tamil: தமிழ் முஸ்லிம்கள், tamiḻ muslimgal) are Tamil-speaking people with Islam as their faith. There are about 3 to 4 million Tamil Muslims in India mostly in Tamil Nadu state and also in neighbouring Kerala. A significant Tamil-speaking Muslim population numbering 1.8 million or more live in the Northern, Eastern provinces and Colombo in Sri Lanka and many other pockets across central, southwest provinces; however they are listed as a separate ethnic group in official statistics. There are around 500,000 in Malaysia and 20,000 in Singapore. Tamil Muslims are largely urban traders rather than farmers. There is a substantial diaspora of Tamil Muslims, particularly in South East Asia, which has seen their presence as early as the 13th century. In the late 20th century, the diaspora expanded to the North America and Western Europe. They are called Cholias in Myanmar, Mamak in Malaysia and Rathas in South Africa.

    The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (Tamil: தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகள், Sinhala: දෙමළ ඊළාම් විමුක්ති කොටි Tamiḻīḻa viṭutalaip pulikaḷ, commonly known as the LTTE or the Tamil Tigers) is a now defunct organisation that was based in northern Sri Lanka. Founded in May 1976 by Velupillai Prabhakaran, it waged a secessionist nationalist campaign to create an independent state in the north and east of Sri Lanka for Tamil people. This campaign evolved into the Sri Lankan Civil War, which ran from 1983 until 2009, when the LTTE was decisively defeated by the Sri Lankan Military under the leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

    At the height of its power, the LTTE possessed a well-developed militia and carried out many high-profile attacks, including the assassinations of several high-ranking Sri Lankan and Indian politicians. The LTTE was the only militant group to assassinate two world leaders: former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 and Sri Lankan President Ranasinghe Premadasa in 1993.


    East Asian Religious Zones

    Korean Buddhist art


    This video documents the creation of a Buddhist painting by the monk artist, Seol-min (formerly known as Jae-u), who has dedicated her life to keeping the tradition of Buddhist painting alive. Learn more about Korean Buddhism on education.asianart.org. 5:31



    Zen Mystical Spirit of the East: Thich Nhat Hahn, 1:09

    Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh identifies the goal of mindfulness practice--to be present in the here and now--and the video depicts a scene of meditation at Plum Village monastery in France.


    An introduction to Zen, a form of Buddhism that emphasizes seeking one's own Buddha nature through meditation. Learn more about Buddhism in Japan on the education.asianart.org.




    Mystical Spirit of the East: Dalai Lama, :31

    The Dalai Lama states his conviction that all world religions have the same potential to transform humanity for the better


    Recommended Readings


    Hagen, Steve, Buddhism is Not What You Think. While there are many texts that introduce the basic beliefs and concepts of Buddhism, this reading takes the opposite tack: correcting common misunderstandings and misperceptions of the faith.

    Hanh, Thich Nhat, The Heart of the Buddha’s Teaching. Thich Nhat Hanh is one of the most recognized Buddhists in the world, and is widely commended for his ability to apply Buddhist principles to the modern world.

    Payutto, Prayudh A., Buddhist Economics. Payutto presents a Buddhist perspective on economics.
    Smith, Huston and Novak, Phillip, Buddhism. This reading introduces Vipassana, or Theravadin meditation, and provides a good introduction to one of the unique aspects of Theravada Buddhism.


    1. Think about the role that desire plays in your everyday actions and long-­term life goals. Then, try to imagine what it would be like to live a life in which one did not make decisions and act on the basis of desires. 

    2. Spend 10 minutes in class trying a simple meditation exercise. You will sit quietly and simply try to identify everything that goes on in your mind. Then, we will find whether you found you had control over your thoughts, and what it would take to be able to control the mind.

    After we have meditated as a class, we will see a display of the Buddhist control of the mind which actually ties into the American involvement in Vietnam.

    Buddhist Monk - self immolation, 5:18


    June 11, 1963, Thich Quang Duc, a Buddhist monk from Vietnam, burned himself to death at a busy intersection in downtown Saigon to bring attention to the repressive policies of the Diem regime that controlled the South Vietnamese government at the time. Buddhist monks asked the regime to lift its ban on flying the traditional Buddhist flag, to grant Buddhism the same rights as Catholicism, to stop detaining Buddhists and to give Buddhist monks and nuns the right to practice and spread their religion.

    As he burned he never moved a muscle, never uttered a sound.

    Buddhism is a nontheistic religion that encompasses a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, who is commonly known as the Buddha, meaning "the awakened one". According to Buddhist tradition, the Buddha lived and taught in the eastern part of the Indian subcontinent sometime between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE. He is recognized by Buddhists as an awakened or enlightened teacher who shared his insights to help sentient beings end their suffering through the elimination of ignorance and craving by way of understanding and the seeing of dependent origination and the Four Noble Truths, with the ultimate goal of attainment of the sublime state of Nirvana, by practicing the Noble Eightfold Path (also known as the Middle Way).

    Two major extant branches of Buddhism are generally recognized: Theravada ("The School of the Elders") and Mahayana ("The Great Vehicle"). Theravada has a widespread following in Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia (Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Myanmar etc.). Mahayana is found throughout East Asia (China, Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Singapore, Taiwan etc.) and includes the traditions of Pure Land, Zen, Nichiren Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism, Shingon, and Tiantai (Tendai). In some classifications, Vajrayana—practiced mainly in Tibet and Mongolia, and adjacent parts of China and Russia—is recognized as a third branch, with a body of teachings attributed to Indian siddhas, while others classify it as a part of Mahayana.

    Buddhist schools vary on the exact nature of the path to liberation, the importance and canonicity of various teachings and scriptures, and especially their respective practices. One consistent belief held by all Buddhist schools is the lack of a Creator deity. The foundations of Buddhist tradition and practice are the Three Jewels: the Buddha, the Dharma (the teachings), and the Sangha (the community). Taking "refuge in the triple gem" has traditionally been a declaration and commitment to being on the Buddhist path, and in general distinguishes a Buddhist from a non-Buddhist. Other practices may include following ethical precepts; support of the monastic community; renouncing conventional living and becoming a monastic; the development of mindfulness and practice of meditation; cultivation of higher wisdom and discernment; study of scriptures; devotional practices; ceremonies; and in the Mahayana tradition, invocation of buddhas and bodhisattvas.

    Origin of All Things


    Nature of God

    How does the concept of God figures in Buddhism">How does the concept of God figure in Buddhism? 3:43

    Some people say Buddhism is an atheistic religion. Is it true? This clip attempts to discuss this topic on the concept of God in Buddhism. Ven. Dr. H. Gunaratana and Ven. Dr. K. Sri Dhammananda gives concise but accurate explanation into this contentious issue. This video production attempts to discuss various questions that Buddhists and non-Buddhists ask about the Teachings of the Enlightened One and how to practise these teachings in the modern world. Although Buddhism is the religion of nearly one fifth of the world's population, there are many misunderstandings about its Doctrine and Practice. The most Venerable Dr. K. Sri Dhammananda Nayaka Maha Thera together with Ven. Dr, H. Gunaratana, Ven. K. Wimalajothi and Ven. Wimala answered various questions put to them by a panel of well-known Buddhist leaders.


    View of Human Nature
    Nepal: Buddhism, Humanity and God -- English trailer, 2:21

    This documentary depicts the complex relationship among Buddhism, human beings and God. It is produced by faculty members and students in the Department of Media and Communication, City University of Hong Kong.

    What does man and God seek?


    View of Good and Evil

    Buddhism and the difference between good and evil, 6:55

    I follow a kind of Buddhism called "Pure Land", in Japanese 浄土真宗, and we say that everybody is looking for Happiness, nobody wants to suffer. The question is: what is happiness? Where does suffering come from? What should we do to achieve Happiness? What should we not do to avoid suffering?
    There is a clear distinction between happiness and suffering, between good and evil, they are not the same thing.

    According to Pure Land Buddhism, the very first thing Buddha Siddharta said soon after achieving Enlightenment was 人生は苦なり, "Life is suffering", all people in this world are suffering.

    There are 8 kinds of suffering, called 四苦八苦
    生苦 suffering of living
    病苦 suffering of disease
    老苦 suffering of getting old
    死苦 suffering of dying
    愛別離苦 suffering of losing loved ones
    怨憎会苦 suffering of meeting unpleasant ones
    求不得苦 suffering of not obtaining things
    五陰盛苦 suffering of having a physical body

    What should we do to achieve Happiness and avoid suffering?
    According to Buddhism we must follow the Principle of Cause and Effect.
    The Principle of Cause and Effect says 善因善果, 善因 meaning good cause, 善果 meaning good results. If we do good actions we will receive good results. If we do good actions we will receive Happiness. It also says 悪因悪果, 悪因 meaning bad cause, 悪果 meaning bad results. If we do evil actions we will receive evil results. If we do evil actions we will receive suffering.

    What is a good action and what is an evil action?
    A good action is unselfish. Its purpose is to make other people happy, to bring Happiness to other people, to give Happiness to other people.
    In Japanese this is called 自利利他(jiririta).
    An evil action is selfish. Its purpose is to make oneself happy. In Japanese it is called 我利我利亡者(garigari moja).

    That is also the difference between Buddhas and humans.

    Buddhas, like anyone else, also want Happiness, they don't want to suffer.

    According to the Principle of Cause and Effect ,the only way to receive Happiness, is by giving Happiness. If you give Happiness you will receive Happiness. If you give suffering, you will receive suffering, you receive what you give, that is what the Principle of Cause and Effect says.

    Buddhas are completely unselfish because they know and follow the Principle of Cause and Effect.

    Buddhas will do anything to make other people happy, even sacrificing their own lives. They are not afraid of dying, they are not afraid of anything. Buddhas are completely fearless. The fear of death is the worst of all sufferings, and by overcoming the worst of all sufferings, Buddhas have overcome all kinds of sufferings. By overcoming death, Buddhas have become immortal, never to experience the suffering of death again.

    Human beings, on the other hand, are selfish, they think only about themselves, they want things for themselves, they want money, they want fortune, they want family, and they will do anything to "defend" their money, their fortune, their family, their lives.

    Human beings are afraid of dying, they will do anything to "defend" their own lives, they will even kill other people .

    Because human beings are afraid of death, they are afraid of anything, they live in constant fear. Everything human beings do is to try to avoid death. Human beings pursue money because they are afraid of dying. But all the money in the world cannot stop death, humans don't become immortal just by having money.
    The world after death is decided by our own actions.

    Selfish people will go to a selfish world. Unselfish people will go to an unselfish world. The future is the continuation of the present. The future is the result of the present.

    If you are selfish, after death, you will go to a world of people just like you, selfish, coward, suspicious, afraid of dying, ready to do to anything to "defend" their own lives, even kill other people. This world in Buddhism is called 地獄 (jigoku), translated as hell.

    If you are unselfish, after death, you will go to a world of people just like you, unselfish, courageous, fearless, people who think about you, who care about you, who will do anything to make you happy, even sacrificing their own lives. This world in Buddhism is called 極楽(gokuraku), the buddhist paradise.

    The very first step in Buddhism is to follow the Principle of Cause and Effect and do 廃悪修善(haiaku shuzen), to stop doing evil deeds, and do good deeds.


    View of "Salvation"

    Buddhist Path to Salvation.wmv, 4:42



    View of After Life

    Concept of Heaven and Hell in Buddhism, 4:07


    This Q&A is part of a presentation held in 1997 at the Buddhist Missionary Society, KL.

    Although Buddhism is the religion of nearly one fifth of the world's population, there are many misunderstandings about its Doctrine and Practice. The most Venerable Dr. K. Sri Dhammananda Nayaka Maha Thera together with Ven. Dr, H. Gunaratana, Ven. K. Wimalajothi and Ven. Wimala answered various questions put to them by a panel of well-known Buddhist leaders.

    What is the concept of Heaven and Hell in Buddhism? Answers are provided here by Ven. Dr. K. Sri Dhammananda together with Ven. Dr. H. Gunaratana.


    Practices and Rituals

    Buddhism Today-Types of Buddhist rituals in Thailand, 4:12



    Vajrayana 1:03


    Celebrations and Festivals


    Buddhism and the Modern World

    Tibetan Buddhist Monks - Relaxing Music, 44:13


    Carry On My Wayward Son Kansas Lyrics, 5:28
    • This was written by Kansas guitarist Kerry Livgren. According to Livgren, the song was not written to express anything specifically religious, though it certainly expresses spiritual searching and other ideas.

      Livgren became an evangelical Christian in 1980, and has said that his songwriting to that point was all about "searching." Regarding this song, he explained: "I felt a profound urge to 'Carry On' and continue the search. I saw myself as the 'Wayward Son,' alienated from the ultimate reality, and yet striving to know it or him. The positive note at the end ('Surely heaven waits for you') seemed strange and premature, but I felt impelled to include it in the lyrics. It proved to be prophetic."
    • This song can be seen as the continuation of the last song of Kansas' previous album Masque. As stated in the last verse of "The Pinnacle":
      "I stood where no man goes/Above the din I rose
      Life is amusing though we are losing
      Drowned in tears of awe..."

      By definition in the Cambridge dictionary, "Din" is a loud unpleasant confused noise which lasts for a long time. The first line of "Carry On Wayward Son" is: "Once I rose above the noise and confusion." (thanks, Rich - Trenton, NJ)
    • This was the group's first major hit, and like their next one, "Dust In The Wind," it was a last minute addition to the album. Kerry Livgren wrote the song just two days before they started recording Leftoverture. At that point, the band was polishing the songs they had, not bringing in new ones. "I've got one more song that you might want to hear," he told the band, and when he played "Carry On," they knew it was a hit and made it the lead track on the album.
    • The a cappella vocals in the beginning of this song gave it a very distinctive intro. This worked well on Rock radio stations where disc jockeys rarely talked over the music.
    • This song has appeared in several movies, including Heroes (1977), Happy Gilmore (1996) and Anchorman - The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004).
    • The Oak Ridge Boys recorded this for the album When Pigs Fly: Songs You Never Thought You'd Hear. Cevin Soling, who put the compilation together, said: "The Oak Ridge Boys, I wanted them to do Nine Inch Nails' 'Closer,' and I had this wonderful arrangement worked out... this very 'Elvira' Country version of the Nine Inch Nails' 'Closer,' with all the doo-wops and poppa oom maus and everything. I could not wait to get them in the studio to work on that. I had alternate lyrics, you know, but they were still uncomfortable with doing that. So that kind of went back and forth and somehow "Wayward Son" got thrown out there. I don't remember exactly who picked that one, but generally I'd give the artist a few choices and they sort of pick among them." (Check out our interview with Cevin Soling.)
    • This song is featured in the South Park episode "Guitar Queer-O." In the episode, Stan and Kyle become obsessed with the video game Guitar Hero and often play to "Carry On Wayward Son." The song is played throughout the episode. (thanks, Matthew - Hawthorne, NJ)

    Steely Dan - Bodhisattva (With Lyrics), 5:18

    Steely Dan - Bodhisattva

    Would you take me by the hand
    Would you take me by the hand
    Can you show me
    The shine of your Japan
    The sparkle of your china
    Can you show me
    I'm gonna sell my house in town
    I'm gonna sell my house in town
    And I'll be there
    To shine in your Japan
    To sparkle in your China
    Yes I'll be there


    Buddhist Meditation Music for Positive Energy: Buddhist Thai Monks ... ▶ 2:01:28

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDCS19EOsrA Dec 11, 2014 - Uploaded by NuMeditationMusic Buddhist Meditation Music for Positive Energy: Buddhist Thai Monks ... Buddhism is not a religion but a ...

    How a Prince Became the Buddha, 10:49


    Buddhist Music

    David Bowie - Buddha Of Suburbia, 4:24