Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? (A Sit-a-Long Series)

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  • Jundo
    Treeleaf Founder and Priest
    • Apr 2006
    • 39271

    #16
    Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? - Manjushri



    Each of the Bodhisattvas may be seen as an archetype for a vital aspect of Buddhist Practice ... Manjushri Bodhisattva for Wisdom. Taigen Dan Leighton writes in FACES OF COMPASSION ...
    Manjushri is the bodhisattva of wisdom and insight, penetrating into the fundamental emptiness, universal sameness, and true nature of all things. Manjushri ... sees into the essence of each phenomenal event. This essential nature is that not a thing has any fixed existence separate in itself, independent from the whole world around it. The work of wisdom is to see through the illusory self-other dichotomy, our imagined estrangement from our world. Studying the self in this light, Manjushri's flashing awareness realizes the deeper, vast quality of self, liberated from all our commonly unquestioned, fabricated characteristics.

    ... Manjushri cuts through our conventional conceptions of and attachments to abiding, increase and decrease, ordinary and holy, nirvana and samsara, arising and ceasing, aspiring, and grasping. Experiencing personally and clearly the perfection of wisdom that Manjushri expounds is about seeing through, and being liberated from, all limited views about these common snares of consciousness. (Bodhisattva Archetypes, p. 93 & 116)


    Last edited by Bion; 05-14-2024, 08:14 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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    • Jundo
      Treeleaf Founder and Priest
      • Apr 2006
      • 39271

      #17
      Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? - Samantabhadra



      Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions ... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions ... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions ... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions... each riffing on Samantabhadra, manifesting Buddhas reflecting Buddhas, Bodhisattvas within Bodhisattvas, in multitudinous worlds containing myriad atoms in all directions ... each riffing on Samantabhadra ...



      Last edited by Bion; 05-14-2024, 08:15 PM.
      ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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      • Jundo
        Treeleaf Founder and Priest
        • Apr 2006
        • 39271

        #18
        Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? - Avalokiteshvara (Kannon)


        Taigen Dan Leighton writes, in his wonderful book Faces of Compassion: Classic Bodhisattva Archetypes and their Modern Expression ...
        One meaning of Avalokiteshvara's name is "Regarder of the World's Cries or Sounds," indicated in the Japanese name Kanzeon. A shortened form of this is Kannon (or the Chinese Guanyin), "Hearing or Regarding Sounds." Avalokiteshvara is the one who calmly hears and considers all of the world's sounds of woe. This name implies that empathy and active listening are primary practices of compassion. Just to be present, to remain upright and aware in the face of suffering without needing to react reflexively, is compassion. Kanzeon acknowledges beings and their cries, and responds when appropriate or when it would be useful ... Considering all the many manifestations encompassed by Avalokiteshvara, however, we might also remember to carefully regard our own cries, the suffering of all the beings included within us. We cannot offer compassion to others if we cannot be compassionate, accepting, and forgiving of ourselves. We can hear and acknowledge our own feelings of fear, frustration, and anger with calm uprightness, rather than needing to react externally and act them out inappropriately.



        I feel this is a wonderful reminder that we should offer Compassion and Loving Kindness to this Sentient Being, you and me, even as we reach out to help all Sentient Beings and the world (we are sentient beings in this world too!).

        Kannon is often depicted with 1000 arms and eyes, seeing and reaching out toward suffering wherever it manifests. Truly, those hands and eyes are our hands and eyes.

        Last edited by Bion; 05-14-2024, 08:16 PM.
        ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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        • Jundo
          Treeleaf Founder and Priest
          • Apr 2006
          • 39271

          #19
          Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? - Kshitigarbha (Jizo)



          Jizo Bodhisattva is a beloved figure in Japanese Buddhism, and statues of him can often be seen along roads to protect travelers, in temple grounds and cemeteries. He is a figure of Compassion, much as Kannon, who travels anywhere from heaven to hell to help those in need ... especially those who find themselves in a hell of their own making by Greed, Anger and Ignorance.

          Jizo has become known over the centuries as a protector of children and women, including expectant mothers. Most of all, he is the protector of deceased children, including stillborn, miscarried or aborted infants. He is thought to protect them in the 'other world', nursing and soothing them, guiding them back for another chance to be born in this world when the time is right. For that reason, he is often seen by the hundreds in cemeteries dressed in children's clothes and a bib, surrounded by toys and dolls.



          So many children suffering in the world.


          In my heart, I hope that Jizo is with them somehow...
          Last edited by Bion; 05-14-2024, 08:16 PM.
          ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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          • Jundo
            Treeleaf Founder and Priest
            • Apr 2006
            • 39271

            #20
            Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? - Maitreya



            MAITREYA is said to be the future Buddha, the successor to the historic Śākyamuni Buddha. It's said that his 'coming' which will happen in a few thousand (or perhaps millions) of years. In the meantime, he awaits his return, residing in Tuṣita Heaven. Yes, there are some elements to Maitreya rather like the 'Second Coming' of Jesus. Maitreya is taken by some as something like a Buddhist Messiah.

            He is often seen seated in a pose somewhat reminiscent of Rodan's "THE THINKER", but with softer shape and expression, sometimes tranquil and sometimes crying, contemplating the suffering of sentient beings. In fact, Maitreya's name may be derived from the Sanskrit wordMaitri (Metta in Pali), 'loving-kindness'.

            Sometimes he is seen in this form ...





            ... perhaps from after he let himself go. However, the origins of this popular "Laughing Buddha" are actually found a figure called Hotei from China, a jolly fat monk who happened to be a devotee of Maitreya, and whose image became mixed into the Maitreya legend over time. In any event, even if not really "Maitreya", the image is very popular in Chinese Buddhist temples ... and Chinese restaurants. One popular belief is that if one rubs his fat belly on the 1st day of the Lunar Year, it will bring forth wealth, good luck and prosperity.

            (In my case, I typically think of the Laughing Buddha when I break my diet ... often at a Chinese restaurant.)

            Maitreya was frequently taken as a cult symbol driving peasant rebellions and other mass movements for social change or revolution in China in centuries past.

            In so many ways, Maitreya is simply a symbol of future hope and change.

            Last edited by Bion; 05-14-2024, 08:17 PM.
            ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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            • Jundo
              Treeleaf Founder and Priest
              • Apr 2006
              • 39271

              #21
              Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva - Vimalakīrti



              That's an image of the lay master Vimalakīrti in his sick bed where, amid his physical illness and infirmity (or the appearance thereof), he expounds the teachings of Emptiness to the Great Arhats and Bodhisattvas, giving each a run for their money in his powerful expression of Dharma.

              And money is something that Vimalakīrti has loads of, though he uses it for good and to aid those in need. He does not hide from the world, but rather is described as practicing and realizing enlightenment right at home with wife and kids, and through his business ownership. He'd go anywhere to teach, from the government offices of the great ministers to schools to shops to bar rooms and brothels. While in the world "although he had a wife and children, yet he was chaste in action ... although he ate and drank like others, what he truly savored was the joy of meditation."

              For obviously reason, the story of Vimalakīrti has been popular with those espousing the power of lay practice through the centuries.

              Taigen Dan Leighton writes, in his wonderful book Faces of Compassion: Classic Bodhisattva Archetypes and their Modern Expression ...
              Vimalakirti practiced as a layman amid the delusions of the world, without being ensnared by them. ... Vimalakirti in all his activities embodies the Mahayana view of being in the world but not of it [and in fact] a central point of the Vimalakirty Sutra is that the bodhisattva can onlyawaken in the context of intimate contact and involvement with the follies and passions of the world and its beings. ... Bodhisattvas can develop only through fully entering, before transcending, the turbulent seas of passions and delusions.



              Vimalakirti even denies the necessity of "home leaving" or retreat to a monastery (a subject of some discussion these days) in order to truly "leave home" ...
              Vimalakirti's critiques express his special commitment to lay practice as a bodhisattva model. Many of his comments and admonitions involve the tendency of the disciples to withdraw from engagement with the ordinary world. He criticizes priestly roles and religious trappings for masking inauthenticity of practice or interfering with the full development of spiritual potential of common people.



              Home-office-factory-nursery-jail-or-city streets ...

              ... each our "monastery" when perceived as such.



              Gassho, Jundo

              SatTodayLAH

              Last edited by Kotei; 05-16-2024, 07:28 PM.
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