Sunday, January 19, 2014


The Bodhisattva of Universal Worthy

     With Samanta meaning "universally extending" and Bhadra meaning "great virtue" the Bodhisattva Samantabhadra extends his virtue and compassion to all sentient beings.  Samantabhadra is known as the Bodhisattva of "Universal Worthy" as his virtue is that of a sage's.  As a cosmic entity, Samatabhadra is the embodyment of all Bodhisattva practices and merits indispensable in the attainment of Buddhahood. 

The Importance of the Lotus Sutra

     The Lotus Sutra is compossed of 28 chapters. There are two broad themes to the Lotus sutra, the first being found in the first fourteen chapters. The first fourteen chapters are meant to explain the reality of intrinsic commonalities that occur in human beings, while the remaining chapters describe the eternalness of the Buddha. ( The Lotus Sutra is the only sutra that promises the salvation of women, therefore it was a central part of the Japanese women's religion. According to other sutras, the only way for a woman to reach enlightenment would be for her to be reborn as a man, which is why this particular sutra was so important. Fugen was believed to be the protector of those who were devoted to the Lotus Sutra, so Fugen became an important figure to all women and their prayers ( Like many other sutras, the Lotus Sutra can be recited and copied to pay alms by both men and women ( Listen to the video below if you would like to hear the Lotus Sutra chanted.
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The Ten Great Vows 
Samantabhadra contributed to the Avatamsaka sutra, which recites the practices of Bodhisattvas and the merits of the Buddhist teaching.  In the sutra, the Bodhisattva Samatabhadra teaches a student how wisdom is only present as long as it benefits everyone.  In his teaching he recites ten great vows that he uses to guide himself to enlightenment.  The Ten Great Vows included:

  1. To pay homage and respect to all Buddhas  
  2. To praise all the Buddhas  
  3. To make extensive offerings to all the Buddhas 
  4. To repent misdeeds and evil karmas
  5. To rejoice in others' merits and virtues
  6. To request the Buddhas to continue teaching (Turning the wheel of Dharma) 
  7. To request the Buddhas to remain in the world 
  8. To always follow Buddha's teachings 
  9. To accommodate and benefit all living beings 
  10. To dedicate all merits for the welfare of all living beings   

The first eight vows guide one to enlightenment through oneself; while the last two vows are drawn out to help others reach enlightenment.  The first vow is to show respect to all buddhas for their wisdom and compassion.  The second refers to Samantabhadra’s belief that there are infinite number of Buddhas and how all should be praised for their virtues.  The third is to make offerings like food or flowers to the Buddhas.  However, Samatabhadra stated that the most valuable offering is to practice the teachings of the Buddha so everyone can benefit.  In the fourth vow, Samatabhadra identifies how everyone has sinned from thoughts, words, or actions throughout their past lives. So, it is best to repent these sins by commiting one's self to not make the same mistakes.  With the fifth vow, Samantabhadra proposed to benefit from others merits and share the Buddhist teachings.  The sixth is intended to ensure that the Buddhist teachings will continues to be passed on.  The seventh vow is for the Buddhas to remain in the world so they would be able to guide more individuals.  By always following the Buddha’s teaching in the eighth vow, people are able to attain enlightenment by taking the Buddha’s same path.  The ninth is meant for all living beings to be able to live in harmony.  Finally, the last vow is designed to save all living beings by gaining merits from following the first nine vows.
For his dedication to the Buddhist teachings and through his Ten Great Vows, Samantabhara also became known as the Bodhsattva of Extensive Conduct.  As well as, Samantabhadra’s vows have become a common practice in East Asian Buddhism and have been used regularly for morning rituals.  The Ten Great Vows have even become basic guidelines for bodhisattvas. 

 Samantabdhadra Mantra 

adaṇḍe daṇḍapati daṇḍa-āvartani daṇḍa-kuśale daṇḍa-sudhāri 

sudhārapati buddhapaśyane sarvadhāraṇi 

āvartani saṁvartani saṅgha-parīkṣite saṅgha-nirghātani 

dharma-parīkṣite sarva-sattva ruta kauśalya-anugate 

siṁha-vikrīḍite anuvarte vartani vartāli svāhā 

Namo Buddhaya!

The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion. It should transcend a personal god and avoid dogmas and theology. Covering both the natural and spiritual, it should be based on a religious sense arising from the experience of all things, natural and spiritual, as a meaningful unity. Buddhism answers this description. ~ Albert Einstein 

Namo Buddhaya

How Coming Out Heals Your Life

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma

Tricycle Daily Dharma January 19, 2014

Mindful Resolution

The Buddha encouraged us to think of the good things done for us by our parents, by our teachers, friends, whomever; and to do this intentionally, to cultivate it, rather than just letting it happen accidentally.
- Ajahn Sumedho, “The Gift of Gratitude”
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