Tag Archives: bodhisattva

Does a Buddha say to himself “I have obtained Perfect Enlightenment?”

Buddha then asked, “What do you think, Subhuti, does one who has entered the stream which flows to Enlightenment, say ‘I have entered the stream’?” “No, Buddha,”  Subhuti replied. “A true disciple entering the stream would not think of themselves as a separate person that could be entering anything. Only that disciple who does not […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh – “Contemplation” – Poem and Music

Contemplation A Poem by Thich Nhat Hanh Since the moon is full tonight, let us call upon the stars in prayer. The power of concentration, seen through the bright, one-pointed mind, is shaking the universe. All living beings are present tonight to witness the ocean of fear flooding the Earth. Upon the sound of the […]

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The Bodhisattva Vow-the whole thing is hopeless, but we’ll do it

A hazy autumn moon, solitary and full, falls as it may on the winding river ahead.
 There are those who seek perfect clarity,
 yet sweep as you may, you cannot empty the mind. (The Capping Verse to Dongshan and Shenshan Cross the River) “You can’t teach someone to walk a tightrope wire by telling them […]

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Did you know that the Buddha almost didn’t teach the Dharma?

According to the Pali canon, not long after the Buddha attained enlightenment, he mused to himself: “This Dhamma that I have realized is profound, hard to see and hard to understand, peaceful and sublime, unattainable by mere reasoning, subtle, to be experienced only by the wise.” The Buddha then apparently seriously questioned whether he could […]

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The Marriage of the Princess and the Dragon-A Dharma Story

I’ve been thinking about “dragons” recently and thought I’d share this wonderful retelling of a Swedish fairy tale by dharma teacher Jack Kornfield from his wonderful bookAfter the Ecstasy, the Laundry: How the Heart Grows Wise on the Spiritual Path. We all have our own “dragons” in our hearts. May this simple tale help us […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh-Can We Understand the Suffering of our Enemy?

Few people in the world have worked as tirelessly for the cause of peace, individual and collective, as Thich Nhat Hanh. His effort to bring peace—to be peace—began during his days as a young Buddhist monk during the Vietnam War and led Martin Luther King Jr. to nominate him for the Nobel Peace Prize in […]

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A Buddhist Mantra based on the Prayer of St. Francis

Here is a mantra I often work with during the day. It’s an adaptation I made of the much-loved Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi. (St. Francis is my favorite Christian saint, among other things, because of his love of animals, and especially birds!  See: The Compassion of the Swans) In Buddhism, working with a […]

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Prayer and Metta for all beings affected by the BP Gulf oil disaster

Like millions of others in the United States, and around the world, I’ve been keeping a close watch on the tragic situation with the BP Deepwater Horizon oil disaster. I don’t live in the Gulf area, but I’ve tried to help by various forms of advocacy and by getting good, solid scientific and technical information […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh-The Five Mindfulness Trainings

I still remember vividly taking the Five Mindful Trainings vow in 2002 from Thich Nhat Hanh at Stonehill College in Massachusetts. By now, the Trainings are written in my heart, but I still look at them once a week, renewing my vow and sending to Thây, his monks and nuns, and his students, any merit […]

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Engaged Buddhism-How to Help with the Gulf Oil Disaster

One of the things that attracted me to Thich Nhat Hanh was his embodiment of what he called “engaged Buddhism.” While Buddhist monastic life and retreats have their crucial place, our day-to-day actions and their kamma are what show whether we are developing sila—the moral and ethical awakening this is every bit as important as […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh on Buddhism, Mindfulness, and the Holy Spirit

“We can touch the living Buddha. We can also touch the living Christ. When we see someone overflowing with love and understanding, someone who is keenly aware of what is going on, we know that we are very close to the Buddha and to Jesus Christ.” Thich Nhat Hanh One of the things I love […]

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Zen Wisdom-The State of No-Mistake is Called Nowness

After my heart teacher, Thich Nhat Hanh, one of the first Zen teachers I read and studied extensively was Roshi John Daido Loori. Founder of the Mountains and Rivers Order of Zen Buddhism, Roshi Loori is considered one the great American masters of the Zen koan system.  Although he recently passed on, you can find […]

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Spiritual Practice and Learning to Surrender (w/music)

Here are some insights on surrender from various spiritual teachers, paths, and poets that I have found comforting and inspiring.  At the end, I share a moving instrumental piece by pianist Solomon Keal from his beautiful album Peace of Heaven. Some of us have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, before we let go, and […]

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The Selfish King and the Compassion of the Tree Spirit

Doing some dharma study this weekend, I came upon this wonderful story in a document I downloaded from internet years ago. I regret that I no longer know the source of this, but the message is a relevant as ever: A long time ago there lived a selfish king. He wanted to build a large […]

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