Monthly Archives: November 2012

The Philosopher and the Boatman

The Three Wheels of the Dharma are the three periods of the Buddha’s teaching, in which He emphasized various aspects. The First Wheel (in which He presented the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Noble Path) are focused on cause … Continue reading

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Giving Thanks

The season for the massive slaughter of turkeys has arrived once again. Between 250 and 300 million turkeys are raised for slaughter every year in the U.S. alone. And that is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg: in the … Continue reading

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Essential and Auxiliary

There are some who say, “The statement that by recitation of the Holy Name of Amideva one may be born in the Pure Land is an example of a temporally displaced intention. Rebirth may refer to a birth many lifetimes … Continue reading

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Without Doubt

Some teachers hold, “Because ordinary persons are not found in Sukhavati (the Pure Land), the present ordinary persons in this world will not be born there, despite their efforts.” This will harm sentient beings, for it gives rise to error … Continue reading

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Bits of Rubble Turned into Gold

Buddha Amideva, in his Bodhisattva stage, Made the universal Vow:   When beings hear my Name and think of me, I will come to take them to my land.   I shall not discriminate at all Between the poor and … Continue reading

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Reason

We rely on reason to understand reality, but reason only reveals the structure of language and the architecture of the human mind.  Our pronouncements about what is real and unreal, possible and impossible, logical and contradictory, say more about the … Continue reading

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Tibetan Buddhism and the Pure Land

There is a strong (and unfounded) belittling of Pure Land teachings and practice in the Western understanding of Tibetan Buddhism. Perhaps this is due to the dominant position of academics and nihilists in ‘western’ Buddhist circles, although there has been … Continue reading

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