108 Bows for Happiness

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  • Seiryu
    Member
    • Sep 2010
    • 620

    108 Bows for Happiness

    I found this today and wanted to share it. I believe this is a Korean zen practice, but I'm not to sure. Anyway here it is:

    108 Bows

    Before bowing, I prepare the proper mindset:

    - Bowing is one way to purify myself.

    - Through bowing, I learn how to humble myself and how to have a healthy body and mind.

    - I bow to realize that others' lives are just as valuable as mine.

    - I bow to get rid of my selfishness.

    - I bow because it is the desire of my true self.

    - I bow for all living things, and for peace in the universe.


    1. I bow to wonder where I came from and where I am and where I am going.

    2. I bow to appreciate my parents for giving birth to me.

    3. I bow to think about who I am.

    4. I bow to find my true self.

    5. I bow to always appreciate my body and spirit.

    6. I bow for the well-being of my body and spirit.

    7. I bow to think about my true desires.

    8. I bow to find myself and to learn how to control myself.

    9. I bow to appreciate the life I live today.

    10. I bow to give thanks for being alive.

    11. I bow to think about how much I love myself.

    12. I bow to be able to always love my family.

    13. I bow to feel happiness and peace of mind through love.

    14. I bow to look for happiness only through love.

    15. I bow to know that unchangeable love is flowing through the universe.

    16. I bow to the teacher who has shown me the right way.

    17. I bow to feel that love originates inside me.

    18. I bow to reflect that my teacher's lessons are inside me.

    19. I bow to feel that all living things, and the universe, are inside me.

    20. I bow to remember that my ancestors and gods are inside me.

    21. I bow to ask for forgiveness from the people I have hurt, because it hurts the whole universe.

    22. I bow to take care of myself and not to do bad things.

    23. I bow to rid myself of arrogance.

    24. I bow to rid myself of false humility, even if I am in bad circumstances.

    25. I bow to call attention to the good in others, but not the bad.

    26. I bow to keep others' secrets.

    27. I bow to rid myself of hatred of others.

    28. I bow to rid myself of anger against others.

    29. I bow to not repeat anything I have not heard.

    30. I bow to not repeat anything I have not seen.

    31. I bow to always be ready, but not to expect things to be easy.

    32. I bow to avoid expecting obedience from others.

    33. I bow to avoid expecting difficulty in my life.

    34. I bow to make the best of each moment in my life.

    35. I bow to live a righteous life.

    36. I bow to repay even the smallest debt of gratitude.

    37. I bow to not put my own needs over the needs of others.

    38. I bow to not be stingy to others.

    39. I bow to not harm others in order to get ahead.

    40. I bow to try not to obtain valuable things with little effort.

    41. I bow to have the power to control my desires.

    42. I bow to reflect that life is more valuable than anything else.

    43. I bow to know that suffering comes from an attached mind.

    44. I bow to avoid making foolish mistakes out of ignorance.

    45. I bow to try to attain deep wisdom.

    46. I bow to learn to be nice to people, even if I have negative feelings toward them.

    47. I bow to avoid clinging to the strong in order to hurt those who are weaker than me.

    48. I bow to be honest with myself, and also to avoid flattering others.

    49. I bow to be true and honest with myself above all others.

    50. I bow to know that happiness, unhappiness, and desire are all within my mind.

    52. I bow to realize the value of living a smooth, peaceful life.

    53. I bow to avoid looking back at the past, and to not worry about the future.

    54. I bow to own possessions, but not to be controlled by them.

    55. I bow to know that I can find peace by being patient.

    56. I bow to know that having a repentant mind is the best mind.

    57. I bow to find freedom through wisdom.

    58. I bow to control my mind, not to be controlled by it.

    59. I bow to be diligent in my efforts to improve myself.

    60. I bow to be thankful for the hard times I have had, because they have made me strong.

    61. I bow to keep my original pure mind, even when time passes.

    62. I bow to pray with a thankful mind for everything.

    63. I bow to be thankful that I can find myself in silence.

    64. I bow to reflect on the value of living a pure, honest life.

    65. I bow for the people who are working in bad conditions.

    66. I bow for the people who are starving, poor, and living hard lives.

    67. I bow for the people who work to provide me with healthy food.

    68. I bow to have a generous mind, even if I don't have enough for myself.

    69. I bow for the precious lives of my children, who I have brought into the world.

    70. I bow for my partner, who became one with me through love.

    71. I bow for all disabled people.

    72. I bow for friends who have been beside me, sharing my laughter and tears.

    73. I bow for moderation, even when I have enough to waste.

    74. I bow for a humble mind.

    75. I bow for humility, so that I can always put others first.

    76. I bow to realize that nature is being destroyed.

    77. I bow to realize that all lives are interconnected.

    78. I bow for all the lives destroyed by the greed of humanity.

    79. I bow for all the ecosystems that are recovering after being hurt by humanity.

    80. I bow to listen to the sounds of life that are all around me.

    81. I bow to realize that my life is the movement of my soul.

    82. I bow to realize that the object of love and longing is life.

    83. I bow to feel my soul being purified when I hear the sound of a clean, clear stream.

    84. I bow to give thanks for being able to hear and enjoy the beautiful songs of birds.

    85. I bow to be refreshed by the feeling of a cool breeze.

    86. I bow to be thankful as I breathe in fresh air.

    87. I bow to be thankful for the sight of beautiful wildflowers that are always present.

    88. I bow to give thanks for the mountains and landscapes that speak to me through wind and snow.

    89. I bow to the Earth, which feeds all living things.

    90. I bow to the sky, which gives life to all living things.

    91. I bow for my own peace.

    92. I bow to hope for peace in everything around me.

    93. I bow for the peace of my neighbor.

    94. I bow for peace within countries that have been separated for no reason.

    95. I bow for peace between countries arguing for political reasons.

    96. I bow for peace and harmony among all religions.

    97. I bow to hope for peace in all dead and living things.

    98. I bow to hope for peace between human beings and nature.

    99. I bow for a mind that is enlightened and peaceful

    100. I bow for harmony between the poor and the rich.

    101. I bow for harmony between the sick and the healthy.

    102. I bow for harmony between those who have learned and those who have not.

    103. I bow for those who have fallen into darkness.

    104. I bow to accept all of the things I have done.

    105. I bow to be thankful for all of the people who love me and take care of me.

    106. I bow to be thankful for all of the good and beautiful things in my life.

    107. I bow to be thankful for my life and to reflect on the lives that are yet to be.

    108. I bow for myself, realizing that my own precious life is like the universe.



    (Link of practice- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7tuP2Muez4[/video]] )

    Gassho and 108 bows to all

    Seiryu
    Humbly,
    清竜 Seiryu
  • Taigu
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest
    • Aug 2008
    • 2710

    #2
    Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

    Brilliant. Thank you. Nevertheless...

    For nothing, for nobody, letting the bow bowing itself.
    Shikan bow, no agenda or intention.

    In our Soto way, we just bow



    ...



    Taigu

    Comment

    • Seiryu
      Member
      • Sep 2010
      • 620

      #3
      Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

      I agree Taigu Sensei, but the bowing doesn't stop at the end of the 108 bows. That is simply another expression of the bow-less bow of the Buddha. I bow while sitting, I bow while walking. I bow by not bowing, I not bow by bowing.

      Thank you for your comment. =]

      I bow to you in both body and mind by a humble smile.

      Seiryu
      Humbly,
      清竜 Seiryu

      Comment

      • Yugen

        #4
        Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

        The number 108 has an interesting significance which I would like to explore further -

        I have just finished reading Norman Fisher's book Sailing Home - an exploration of Homer's Odyssey from a Zen Buddhist perspective. Fisher mentions some interesting facts about the number 108 - it equals the number of prayer beads on a Buddhist mala, the number of human delusions to be overcome in practice, it also clearly has significance in bowing in certain traditions, and 108 equals the number of suitors Odysseus and his faihful son, shepherd, and supporters kill following the contest of strength (to see who can bend the great Odysseus' bow). I am curious to see if this number appears elsewhere in historical, philosophical, or faith traditions. I should probably write Fisher to see if he knows anything more about this. Can anyone help with this?

        Gassho,
        Yugen

        Comment

        • Taylor
          Member
          • May 2010
          • 388

          #5
          Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

          Thanks for this, it's always nice to see something from another tradition now and then. But really, it's not from anywhere else. Korea, japan, America. All depends on where you find yourself and lose yourself and find yourself again and again. Seung sahn is one of my favorite writers, always will be, I think.

          "only go straight 'don't know'". Splendid advice.

          Gassho,
          Myoken
          Gassho,
          Myoken
          [url:r05q3pze]http://staresatwalls.blogspot.com/[/url:r05q3pze]

          Comment

          • Seiryu
            Member
            • Sep 2010
            • 620

            #6
            Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

            I too think it is good to check out other traditions from time to time. it is a good reminder that we are all connected. Doing the same thing, expressed in different ways, yet always expressing the same thing.

            108 bows...plus some more


            Seiryu
            Humbly,
            清竜 Seiryu

            Comment

            • anista
              Member
              • Dec 2009
              • 262

              #7
              Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

              Originally posted by Yugen
              The number 108 has an interesting significance which I would like to explore further -

              I have just finished reading Norman Fisher's book Sailing Home - an exploration of Homer's Odyssey from a Zen Buddhist perspective. Fisher mentions some interesting facts about the number 108 - it equals the number of prayer beads on a Buddhist mala, the number of human delusions to be overcome in practice, it also clearly has significance in bowing in certain traditions, and 108 equals the number of suitors Odysseus and his faihful son, shepherd, and supporters kill following the contest of strength (to see who can bend the great Odysseus' bow). I am curious to see if this number appears elsewhere in historical, philosophical, or faith traditions. I should probably write Fisher to see if he knows anything more about this. Can anyone help with this?

              Gassho,
              Yugen
              Hello Yugen,

              The two things that immediately come to mind is the Lanka, where there are 108 statements and negations, and the Buddha is asked 108 questions, and the television show Lost where Desmond had to push that button every 108 minutes.

              If you look up 108 in wikipedia you'll see some examples of where the number can be found. Since it all, almost, boils down to mathematics, it's not that strange that the number keeps popping up here and there in differerent contexts.

              /Philip
              The mind does not know itself; the mind does not see itself
              The mind that fabricates perceptions is false; the mind without perceptions is nirv??a

              Comment

              • Onshin
                Member
                • Jul 2010
                • 462

                #8
                Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                And I bow to Seiryu for sharing this with us all.
                Gassho
                _/_ (X 108)
                "This traceless enlightenment continues endlessly" (Dogen Zenji)

                Comment

                • Taigu
                  Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest
                  • Aug 2008
                  • 2710

                  #9
                  Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                  Seiryu, I do think it is important to study other traditions. And I thank you for posting this.

                  My concern is that people may think we bow to...Bowing to realize something is still very dualistc, if you read the statements you get the feeling we have a very theistic viewpoint (using a terminology that Trungpa used a lot) and, in Dogen practice, Raihai, bowing is just bowing. In one of his most famous poems, Dogen describes Raihai with the following poetic imagery:

                  A white heron
                  Hiding itself
                  In the snowy field,
                  Where even the winter grass
                  Cannot be seen.
                  This poem expresses the non dualistic practice in which, it is neither nor, in the action of bowing one disappears. Bowing is not a way to manifest merits, purify the self, get bigger gratitude for parents and teachers. We don't sit zazen to become enlightened. We don't bow to get something. Totally relinquishing views, opinions, holly wishes and great ideas, totally casting off concepts and dreams about this and that, we bow. And just bow. From this action of just bowing changes and merits might arise, but this is not in our own hands. Bowing is to totally give up. And not think or beg for results. Bowing is to throw away. And release the spine after Zazen. The white heron cannot be differenciated from the endless snowy field, through this simple bowing everything bows with you, you bow with everything. Winter is not the promise of Spring, Winter does not become Spring: PRACTICE CANNOT BE MILKED ANG GIVE MERITS!!! Practice is practice and your parents are your parents. One thing at a time. When you bow, bow. When you are with your parents, just be with your parents. Each action is complete. Nothing missing. Here, in this Korean text, everything is said to be lacking! Hence the theistic take I was talking about, begging for being given.

                  I hope this clarify what I wanted to express. That being said there is a lot to be learned from studying other traditions. But nothing can be really achieved and practiced when mixing traditions. This is why New Age is a dead end.

                  gassho

                  Taigu

                  Comment

                  • Seiryu
                    Member
                    • Sep 2010
                    • 620

                    #10
                    Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                    Thank you for that Taigu your point is well taken. _/_ *Gassho*

                    ...But...after all that bowing....six pack abs! :wink:

                    ....just joking....

                    but you are right, every action is complete in itself lacking nothing...sometimes I forget that...or sometimes it is hard to accept that because the mind is so clever at making us think there is something missing...thank you for that reminder...


                    Arigatou

                    *Deep Gassho*

                    Seiryu
                    Humbly,
                    清竜 Seiryu

                    Comment

                    • Jundo
                      Treeleaf Founder and Priest
                      • Apr 2006
                      • 39419

                      #11
                      Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                      Hi,

                      When visiting Korea a few years ago, as well as with a friend's Korean lineage Sangha in America, I had the chance to prostrate 108 times. I found it a lovely practice (all practices are so when the mind is right for them) ... although a little hard on my then 45 year old back and knees!

                      However, I so much am in accord with Bro. Taigu on this matter. We do not bow "to get" or "to achieve" or for any ulterior goal. We just bow, let the bowing bow you, bowing bows bowing.

                      I bow to my Bro. Taigu in pure, non-ulterior gratitude for reminding us of this.

                      I something write this about prostrating ...

                      I am often asked to whom or what we are bowing ... Is it to some thing, god, person or effigy?

                      I answer by saying that there is nothing that's true that is omitted from our bow. We might consider that we're simply bowing to the whole universe, and to ourself and the other people around us ... after all, 'All is One'! The bow expresses pure gratitude. The hands, palms upwards, are raised in a gesture traditionally symbolic of lifting the Buddha's feet over one's head, but that truly means lifting all things of the universe over one's head. It's appropriate to cultivate an attitude of emptying, letting go, receptivity and gratitude in our bows.
                      Are we raising something up over our heads, lifting something over our head, or is the whole world supporting us ... lifting us up when seen as such? Is it truly one or the other? Is it a kind of dance, an embrace?



                      So, as Bro. Taigu says so wisely ...

                      Bowing is not a way to manifest merits, purify the self, get bigger gratitude for parents and teachers. We don't sit zazen to become enlightened. We don't bow to get something. Totally relinquishing views, opinions, holly wishes and great ideas, totally casting off concepts and dreams about this and that, we bow. And just bow. From this action of just bowing changes and merits might arise, but this is not in our own hands. Bowing is to totally give up. And not think or beg for results. Bowing is to throw away.
                      Some lovely thoughts in that list of 108 ... peace, love, gratitude, union, equanimity, strength, humility, generosity, freedom from greed and anger and ignorance. This is what we find in the bowing which is casting off concepts and ulterior motives.

                      By the way ... on the sacred number 108! Oh, we have not even scratched the surface. For just some of the many meanings of '108'. have a gander at this. It is wonderful. Be sure to follow the link ...

                      The Indian Subcontinent rosary or set of mantra counting has 108 beads. 108 has been a sacred number in the Indian Subcontinent for a very long time. This number is explained in many different ways.

                      The ancient Indians were excellent mathematicians and 108 may be the product of a precise mathematical operation (e.g. 1 power 1 x 2 power 2 x 3 power 3 = 108) which was thought to have special numerological significance.

                      Powers of 1, 2, and 3 in math: 1 to 1st power=1; 2 to 2nd power=4 (2x2); 3 to 3rd power=27 (3x3x3). 1x4x27=108

                      Sanskrit alphabet: There are 54 letters in the Sanskrit alphabet. Each has masculine and feminine, shiva and shakti. 54 times 2 is 108.

                      Sri Yantra: On the Sri Yantra there are marmas where three lines intersect, and there are 54 such intersections. Each intersections has masculine and feminine, shiva and shakti qualities. 54 x 2 equals 108. Thus, there are 108 points that define the Sri Yantra as well as the human body.

                      9 times 12: Both of these numbers have been said to have spiritual significance in many traditions. 9 times 12 is 108. Also, 1 plus 8 equals 9. That 9 times 12 equals 108.

                      Heart Chakra: The chakras are the intersections of energy lines, and there are said to be a total of 108 energy lines converging to form the heart chakra. One of them, sushumna leads to the crown chakra, and is said to be the path to Self-realization.

                      Marmas: Marmas or marmastanas are like energy intersections called chakras, except have fewer energy lines converging to form them. There are said to be 108 marmas in the subtle body.

                      Time: Some say there are 108 feelings, with 36 related to the past, 36 related to the present, and 36 related to the future.

                      Astrology: There are 12 constellations, and 9 arc segments called namshas or chandrakalas. 9 times 12 equals 108. Chandra is moon, and kalas are the divisions within a whole.

                      Planets and Houses: In astrology, there are 12 houses and 9 planets. 12 times 9 equals 108.

                      Gopis of Krishna: In the Krishna tradition, there were said to be 108 gopis or maid servants of Krishna.

                      KEEP READING HERE ...

                      http://www.salagram.net/108meaning.html
                      108 Bows, Jundo
                      ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

                      Comment

                      • Seiryu
                        Member
                        • Sep 2010
                        • 620

                        #12
                        Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                        the number 108 thing might be a little too over my head :?:

                        but I am thankful for the wisdom from both Taigu and Jundo!

                        and just to say, I never thought of the 108 practice as something to gain from, I just thought it would be a good practice as is, nothing added to it or taken away from it. I was seeing it as a body practice...no gaining ideas, just bowing but in a framework of '108 bows'

                        just wanted to clear that up

                        either way I learn alot from hearing the responses from both Jundo and Taigu so that was good!

                        112 bows (since I have no more beads on my mala :wink: )

                        Seiryu

                        p.s...hmmm...is bowing for a six pack...attaching to a desired outcome? :twisted:
                        hmmm....
                        Humbly,
                        清竜 Seiryu

                        Comment

                        • Jundo
                          Treeleaf Founder and Priest
                          • Apr 2006
                          • 39419

                          #13
                          Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                          Originally posted by Seiryu
                          p.s...hmmm...is bowing for a six pack...attaching to a desired outcome? :twisted:
                          hmmm....

                          Strictly speaking, I am actually a doing-non-doing kind of fellow ... washing the dishes to get rid of all the yuck and grime, a job to do and a goal to achieve lest the sink be full of dirty dishes ... AND washing the dishes while all goals, all judgments of "clean vs. dirty" have been fully dropped away ... AND washing the dishes, each swipe of the sponge a total completion, with both "dirty" and "clean" whole and sacred in itself, "dirty" just pristinely "dirty" as it is, dirty not turning to 'clean' any more than winter becomes spring (for winter is wholly winter, spring fully springy) ....

                          ... ALL AT ONCE ...

                          So, we bow 108 bows to reach the goal of 108, six-pack abs, the end of the effort ...

                          We bow 108 bows with no goal to reach, no beginning or end ...

                          We bow 108 bows with each bow a total arriving, all bows ever bowed in each bow ...

                          We bow for peace, generosity, gratitude, all the rest, freedom from greed, anger, ignorance ...

                          We bow without the slightest ulterior motive or thought of something to gain ...

                          ... ALL AT ONCE ... ALL AT ONE BEYOND ONE ...

                          112 Bows, Jundo
                          ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

                          Comment

                          • Seiryu
                            Member
                            • Sep 2010
                            • 620

                            #14
                            Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                            Originally posted by Jundo

                            So, we bow 108 bows to reach the goal of 108, six-pack abs, the end of the effort ...

                            We bow 108 bows with no goal to reach, no beginning or end ...

                            We bow 108 bows with each bow a total arriving, all bows ever bowed in each bow ...

                            We bow for peace, generosity, gratitude, all the rest, freedom from greed, anger, ignorance ...

                            We bow without the slightest ulterior motive or thought of something to gain ...

                            I think that was beautifully written thank you for that eye-opener

                            *Endless bows* (It keeps on going up :wink: )

                            Seiryu
                            Humbly,
                            清竜 Seiryu

                            Comment

                            • Taylor
                              Member
                              • May 2010
                              • 388

                              #15
                              Re: 108 Bows for Happiness

                              I believe spiritual materialism deserves its place here. Why do we want to mix traditions, teachers, religions, practices? Because we feel something is lacking. Our traditions has no bows, well we want some g*****n bows! No chanting? Well I'll take this mantra from here, than one from there, oh this one is nice too...

                              And soon our shopping cart is full. All we have is stuff.

                              Somewhat like a buffet, when you eat everything you see and savor nothing, all you do is leave overstuffed and under satisfied. Taste what's in front of you.

                              Gassho,
                              Taylor (Myoken)
                              Gassho,
                              Myoken
                              [url:r05q3pze]http://staresatwalls.blogspot.com/[/url:r05q3pze]

                              Comment

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