Bodhisattva – बोधिसत्त्व

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

In Buddhism, a bodhisattva (/ˌboʊdiːˈsʌtvə/ BOH-dee-SUT-və) is any person who is on the path towards Buddhahood.

In the Early Buddhist schools as well as modern Theravada Buddhism, a bodhisattva (Pali: bodhisatta) refers to anyone who has made a resolution to become a Buddha and has also received a confirmation or prediction from a living Buddha that this will be so.

In Mahayana Buddhism, a bodhisattva refers to anyone who has generated bodhicitta, a spontaneous wish and compassionate mind to attain Buddhahood for the benefit of all sentient beings.

The elaborate concept refers to a sentient being or sattva that develops bodhi or enlightenment — thus possessing the boddisattva’s psyche; described as those who work to develop and exemplify the loving-kindness (metta), compassion (karuṇā), empathetic joy (mudita) and equanimity (upekkha). These four virtues are the four divine abodes, called Brahmavihara (illimitables).

From Wikipédia

Bodhisattva (sanskrit : बोधिसत्त्व (devanāgarī), IAST : bodhisattva ; pâli : bodhisatta ; chinois traditionnel : 菩薩 ; chinois simplifié : 菩萨 ; pinyin : púsà ; japonais : 菩薩 (bosatsu) ; thaï : พระโพธิสัตว์ ; coréen : 보살 (bosal (hanja : 菩薩)) ; tibétain : changchub sempa tibétain : བྱང་ཆུབ་སེམས་དཔའ།, Wylie : byang-chub sems-dpa’ ; vietnamien: Bồ Tát (菩薩)) de sattva « être », bodhi « éveil », est un terme sanskrit qui désigne dans le bouddhisme hinayana un bouddha avant que celui-ci ait atteint l’éveil.

Dans le bouddhisme mahayana, il désigne celui qui a formé le vœu de suivre le chemin indiqué par le bouddha Shakyamuni, a pris le refuge auprès des trois joyaux (Bouddha, Dharma et Sangha) et respecte strictement les disciplines destinées aux bodhisattvas, pour aider d’abord les autres êtres sensibles à s’éveiller, retardant sa propre libération par compassion.

Selon l’Avataṃsaka sūtra, il existe cinquante-deux niveaux (ou étapes de formation) de bodhisattvas : dix degrés de la foi, dix degrés de la demeure, dix degrés de la pratique, dix degrés du transfert de mérites, dix terres, éveil correct et équivalent, et éveil merveilleux. Au début se trouvent les novices qui apprennent les théories en les mettant en pratique, ils doivent s’entraîner pendant trois grands kalpas d’après le Mahāyāna pour devenir bouddhas, et au bout du chemin se situent les grands bodhisattvas tels qu’Avalokiteshvara et Manjushri qui, ayant déjà été bouddhas dans le passé, reviennent dans notre monde en jouant le rôle de bodhisattva pour faciliter le progrès et l’éveil de ceux qui le veulent de leur plein gré.

The Wesak Festival and Basic Truths

At the time of this Wesak Festival, I would call your attention to the fact that the annual return of the Buddha to bless His people everywhere and to convey the message of wisdom, light and love to humanity – coming as He does from the very Heart of Deity Itself – is the outer evidence and guarantee of inner divine guidance and revelation in this present world cycle of 2500 years. Year by year He returns. For a brief minute He reminds us that God exists and ever loves; that He is not unmindful of His people; that the heart of the universe is unalterable compassion, and that man is not alone. To bring this recognition about and to make this appearance possible, a living Triangle of Energy is created and focused through three great spiritual Individuals, Who evoke recognition both in the East and in the West. They are known to believers of every faith and all nationalities. These Three are:

  1. The Lord of the World, the Ancient of Days, Sanat Kumara, the planetary Logos, Melchizedek, He to Whom Christ referred when He said, “I and My Father are One.”
  2. The Buddha, the Illumined One, the Revealer of the light and the wisdom which comes to us from sources far greater than our planetary Life, a Messenger of the Gods.
  3. The Christ, the Son of the Father, the World Savior, the Redeemer. He Who has remained with us and Who is gathering His sheep into His fold, the Lord of Love.

In these Three, Whose nature is radiant love and light, humanity can grasp in some measure the nature of divinity. They are greater than is known or realized; human intelligence and aspiration can only sense Their essential nature; Their spiritual potency has to be stepped down if mankind is to bear the pressure of the impact of the energy They wield and seek to transmit. It is this stepping down process which takes place at the time of the May Full Moon, and it is brought to a “focus of transmission” by the massed intent of the Hierarchy and the massed demand of the world aspirants and disciples – itself drawn forth by the massed need of the people of all lands.

Here, my brothers, is a simple statement of the facts which must be grasped by all of you who seek to participate intelligently in the Wesak Festival and who are anxious to act as transmitters of the spiritual energy which will, at that time, be poured out to suffering humanity. This Wesak Festival in 1941 can prove to be a “Changer of Conditions” and a major turning point in the life of mankind if every spiritually minded person can bring himself to the needed point of selflessness, disciplined purity and resultant receptivity.

There are certain fundamental truths which lie behind all revealed religions. They are essential to the spiritual growth and the progressive realizations of divinity by man. All else found under the term “doctrine” and allied phrases are but expansions of these fundamentals, explanatory in nature, expressive of human interpretations, and formulations of evolutionary recognitions. These are mainly additions and are in the nature of adornment, speculation and prediction; they are constantly subject to change, to rejection or development as man’s intellect and spiritual perception unfolds; they are not basic or unalterable. It is the unalterable truths which must be discovered and recognized as the new world religion takes form on Earth and conditions human thought and consciousness in the coming New Age.

The Basic Truths to Date

These basic truths never change because they are related to the nature of Deity Itself and have become apparent to mankind through revelation, as evolution has proceeded and man has developed the needed perceptive faculties and the required persistence of search, plus the unfolding of the inner light of the soul. These truths, inherent in the divine nature, reveal the soul of God. They are:

  1. The Law of Compassion. This is the truth of right relationship, of loving understanding, of actively expressed Love. It is the foundation of brotherhood and the expression of the inner unity.
  2. The Fact of God. This is the truth that Being is God Immanent and God Transcendent; it involves the recognition of the great Whole and the related part; it is the knowledge of divinity, ascertained through right relationship and identity of origin. It is the revelation of the life of God, pervading all that is (God Immanent), and of that same life, providing that still greater cosmic relation (God Transcendent) which is the final guarantee of all progress and of progressive revelation. ‘Having pervaded this whole universe with a fragment of Myself, I remain’ is the challenge of Deity and the eternal hope of humanity. This is the answer of Life Itself to the demands of humanity, to the enquiries of science and to the whole world problem. God is here, present among us and in all forms of expression; He includes, pervades and remains beyond. He is greater than all appearance. He reveals Himself progressively and cyclically as man gets ready for further knowledge.
  3. The Continuity of Revelation. Ever down the ages and at each human crisis, always in the hours of necessity, at the founding of a new race, or in the awakening of a prepared humanity to a new and wider vision, the Heart of God – impelled by the law of compassion – sends forth a Teacher, a World Savior, an Illuminator, an Avatar. He gives the message which will heal, which will indicate the next step to be taken by the race, which will illumine a dark world problem and give to man an expression of a hitherto unrealized aspect of divinity. Upon this fact of the continuity of revelation and upon the sequence of this progressive manifestation of the divine nature is based the doctrine of Avatars, of divine Messengers, divine Appearances, and inspired Prophets. To all these history unmistakably testifies.
  4. The Inevitable Response of Humanity. I have expressed in these simple words the instinctive spiritual reaction of man and of the undying human spirit to the three above foundational truths. This divine spirit in humanity must ever, and most surely does, respond to the divine Appearance. The witness to this is sure and proved. There is that in mankind which is akin to God and which recognizes its own when it appears. Such is the unshakable reality in the human heart, and recognition is the inevitable reward and result of revelation.
  5. Progress. The reaction of the individual man and of the masses of men to the continuity of revelation – historically proved – cannot be denied. It is the basic fact of religion. The types of that revelation may vary but each new revelation – given in response to human need and demand – has ever led humanity onward towards a steadily brightening goal and a greater glory. The revelation may come on varying levels of the human consciousness. It may be the revelation of new lands to conquer, terrestrial or mental. Some person pointed the way. It may be the recognition of new laws and facts in nature, scientifically grasped and used; it may be the response of intelligent man to increased knowledge, producing a new type of civilization. Some liberated spirit pointed the way. It may be the response of the human heart to the Heart of God, leading to the mystical beatitude, and to the recognition of spiritual Being. It may be the reaction of man to some new teaching, some further unfoldment, resulting in a new and enriched religious approach to the center of life. Some Messenger pointed the way. But always it has meant progress, a moving forward, a rejection of some existing limitation, a repudiating of the undesirable and the evil. Always it involves the recognition of the possible, the ideal and the divine.
  6. Transcendence. This means the innate capacity to pass beyond so-called natural law. This surmounting of limitation is ever taking place and this process of transcendence will call forth increasing recognition. It marks the next major phase in the manifestation of divinity in man; it signifies domination over physical law and humanity’s imminent triumph over the forces which have for so long held him to earth. Of this transcendence the present mastery over the air is the symbol. Man is rapidly mastering the four elements. He cultivates the earth; he rides the waters; he controls the electrical fires of the planet, and he flies triumphant through the air. The question now emerges: What, my brothers, next? Another transcendence lies ahead. It is one of the things which the coming Avatar will reveal.

With the lesser leaders, whom the human spirit evokes to its assistance, I shall not deal. I seek to unfold somewhat the Doctrine of Divine Messengers, of Avatars. From whence come They? What is Their nature? Who are They and what is Their relation to humanity, to the Hierarchy and to still greater groups of Lives? These are questions which normally arise and need clear answering.

An Avatar is a Being Who – having first developed His Own nature, human and divine, and then transcended it – is capable of reflecting some cosmic Principle or divine quality and energy which will produce the desired effect upon humanity, evoking a reaction, producing a needed stimulation and, as it is esoterically called, ‘leading to the rending of a veil and the permeation of light.’ This energy may be generated within the human family and focused in a responsive Messenger; it may be generated within the planet itself and produce a planetary Avatar; it may be the expression of the life impulse and energy of the solar system, or of sources outside the solar system and therefore cosmic. But always it is focused through a manifesting Entity, is called forth by a demand or massed appeal, and evokes response and consequent changes in the life activity, the culture and the civilization of mankind.

The response or reaction of humanity to the divine Messenger establishes in due time the recognition of something transcendent, something to be desired and striven for, something which indicates a vision which is first a possibility and later an achievement. This is the historically proven process and testifies eventually to a fact. This new fact, when added to the facts established by other and earlier Avatars, enriches the spiritual content of the human consciousness, enhances the spiritual life of the race, and stimulates man to move a step forward into the world of reality and out of the world of illusion. Each revelation brings him nearer to the world of causes.

At the present time the Avatars most easily recognized and known are the Buddha and the Christ, because Their messages are familiar to all and the fruits of Their lives and words have conditioned the thinking and the civilizations of both hemispheres; because They are divine-human Avatars and represent something which humanity can more easily understand; because They are of like nature to mankind, “flesh of our flesh and spirit of our spirit.” They therefore mean more to us than any other Divine Emergence. They are known, loved and followed by countless millions. I would ask you to ponder on the potency of the nucleus of force which They have set up. The establishing of a nucleus of energy, spiritually positive, is the constant task of an Avatar. He focuses or anchors a dynamic truth, a potent thought-form or a vortex of attractive energy in the three worlds of human living. Then, as the centuries pass, that truth and the effect of Their lives and words begin steadily to condition human thinking; the established thought-form acts increasingly as a transmitter of divine energy as it expresses a divine idea, and this in time produces a civilization, with its accompanying culture, religions, policies, governments and educational processes. Thus is history made. History is but the record of man’s cyclic reaction to some inflowing divine energy, to some Avatar or some inspired Leader.

——-

Excerpted from:

The Externalization of the Hierarchy – Section III – Forces behind the Evolutionary Process

By Alice Bailey & Djwhal Khul

The Twelve Principles of Buddhism

by Christmas Humphreys QC

    1. Self-salvation is for any man the immediate task. If a man lay wounded by a poisoned arrow he would not delay extraction by demanding details of the man who shot it, or the length and make of the arrow. There will be time for ever-increasing understanding of the Teaching during the treading of the Way. Meanwhile, begin now by facing life as it is, learning always by direct and personal experience.

    2. The first fact of existence is the law of change or impermanence. All that exists, from a mole to a mountain, from a thought to an empire, passes through the same cycle of existence – i.e., birth, growth, decay and death. Life alone is continuous, ever seeking self-expression in new forms. ‘Life is a bridge; therefore build no house on it.’ Life is a process of flow, and he who clings to any form, however splendid, will suffer by resisting the flow.

    3. The law of change applies equally to the ‘soul’. There is no principle in an individual which is immortal and unchanging. Only the ‘Namelessness’, the ultimate Reality, is beyond change, and all forms of life, including man, are manifestations of this Reality. No one owns the life which flows in him any more than the electric light bulb owns the current which gives it light.

    4. The universe is the expression of law. All effects have causes, and man’s soul or character is the sum total of his previous thoughts and acts. Karma, meaning action-reaction, governs all reaction to them, his future condition, and his final destiny. By right thought and action he can gradually purify his inner nature, and so by self-realisation attain in time liberation from rebirth. The process covers great periods of time, involving life after life on earth, but ultimately every form of life will reach Enlightenment.

    5. Life is one and indivisible, though its everchanging forms are innumerable and perishable. There is, in truth, no death, though every form must die. From an understanding of life’s unity arises compassion, a sense of identity with the life in other forms. Compassion is described as ‘the Law of laws – eternal harmony’, and he who breaks this harmony of life will suffer accordingly and delay his own Enlightenment.

    6. Life being One, the interests of the part should be those of the whole. In his ignorance man thinks he can successfully strive for his own interests, and this wrongly directed energy of selfishness produces suffering. He learns from his suffering to reduce and finally eliminate its cause. The Buddha taught Four Noble Truths:

    (a) The omnipresence of suffering;

    (b) its cause, wrongly directed desire;

    (c) its cure, the removal of the cause; and

    (d) Noble Eightfold Path of self-development which leads to the end of suffering.

    7. The Eightfold Path consists in Right (or perfect) Views or preliminary understanding, Right Aims or Motive, Right Speech, Right Acts, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Concentration or mind development, and finally, Right Samadhi, leading to Full Enlightenment. As Buddhism is a way of living, not merely a theory of life, the treading of this Path is essential to self-deliverance. ‘Cease to do evil, learn to do good, cleanse your own heart: this is the Teaching of the Buddhas.’

    8. Reality is indescribable, and a God with attributes is not the final Reality. But the Buddha, a human being, became the All-Enlightened One, and the purpose of life is the attainment of Enlightenment. This state of Consciousness, Nirvana, the extinction of the limitations of self-hood, is attainable on earth. All men and all other forms of life contain the potentiality of Enlightenment, and the process therefore consists in becoming what you are. ‘Look within: thou art Buddha.’

    9. From potential to actual Enlightenment there lies the Middle Way, the Eightfold Way ‘from desire to peace’, a process of self-development between the ‘opposites’, avoiding all extremes. The Buddha trod this Way to the end, and the only faith required in Buddhism is the reasonable belief that where a Guide has trodden it is worth our while to tread. The Way must be trodden by the whole man, not merely the best of him, and heart and mind must be developed equally. The Buddha was the All-Compassionate as well as the All-Enlightened One.

    10. Buddhism lays great stress on the need of inward concentration and meditation, which leads in time to the development of the inner spiritual faculties. The subjective life is as important as the daily round, and periods of quietude for inner activity are essential for a balanced life. The Buddhist should at all times be ‘mindful and self-possessed’, refraining from mental and emotional attachment to ‘the passing show’. This increasingly watchful attitude to circumstances, which he knows to be his own creation, helps him to keep his reaction to it always under control.

    11. The Buddha said: ‘Work out your own salvation with diligence.’ Buddhism knows no authority for truth save the intuition of the individual, and that is authority for himself alone. Each man suffers the consequences of his own acts, and learns thereby, while helping his fellow men to the same deliverance; nor will prayer to the Buddha or to any God prevent an effect from following its cause. Buddhist monks are teachers and exemplars, and in no sense intermediates between Reality and the individual. The utmost tolerance is practised towards all other religions and philosophies, for no man has the right to interfere in his neighbour’s journey to the Goal.

    12. Buddhism is neither pessimistic nor ‘escapist’, nor does it deny the existence of God or soul, though it places its own meaning on these terms. It is, on the contrary, a system of thought, a religion, a spiritual science and a way of life, which is reasonable, practical, and all-embracing. For over two thousand years it has satisfied the spiritual needs of nearly one-third of mankind. It appeals to the West because it has no dogmas, satisfies the reason and the heart alike, insists on self-reliance coupled with tolerance for other points of view, embraces science, religion, philosophy, psychology, ethics and art, and points to man alone, as the creator of his present life and sole designer of his destiny.

    Drafted by Christmas Humphreys, The Buddhist Society, London, in 1945

He loved too much

There once was a man who loved too much
So much that it broke his heart
He saw it pulsing on the floor
A fish, a goldfish, sprung from the bowl
And so,…. so very, out of water.

So that fish cried and cried and cried 
Such that it could live
And in the wetness of its tears
It breathed again
Sanguine and bloody, at the sorrows of the world

As each blood drop fell into the ditch of human will

He dreamed the seed of becoming
As vital sap oozed on land
To fertilize earth and mind
He bled tears of deepest red

And this fish was suffocated by pillow mind

Pressed against to stifle and subdue
Feeling the feathers harsh against THE word
Lest comfort might condition the fabric of life
Numb, numb and numb as a cocaine filled nose.

And in his padded cell

He wonders at the prurient wisdom of all
Lock him away
Silence him
And then, we can all get on with our lives.

Then we will be happy

Then no more challenge
Then peace and satisfaction
Then, not a lot
Then justification and mind

Then no heart

Then only regret and sorrow

Then….


And as the Gaoler came to lock him away they all sighed with relief.

Then…


And what NOW????

Fangs away / Boundless ocean of compassion…

As long as diseases afflict living beings

May I be the doctor, the medicine

And also the nurse

Who restores them to health

———————————————————————–

all I ever wanted to do, was love

is that such a bad thing?

please, stop snarling at me…

 

until you step

into the ocean

you will never know

the Pacific, of a setting sun

 

your lives will be

bereft of the magnificence

manifest of the warmth

and as pink, as can be

 

behold resplendent

the wish fulfilling jewel

Lotus born

and radiant

 

boundless ocean of compassion

wherein I might swim

as naked as Adam

and just as free…

 

free your minds,

find that fifty foot wave

it comes

but once a century

 

boundless ocean of compassion

make point break for me

a real barrel

for me to finger touch

 

may the spray

slick back my hair

as the Bodhi takes me

ever, into eternity…

Lazarus and

I am the voice of one calling in solitude.

 

Change

Always change

 

Love

Always love

 

Love and change

 

As you are not me

Will I love you

 

As you are of me

I will love you more

 

As I am of you

I will love you most

 

As you and I are of Him

We love in Him

 

As I am, so I am

As you are, so you are

As He is, so are we

 

Each day

Brings a new birth

 

And slowly

Lazarus he leaves the cave

 

And throws the bandages

From his eyes

 

And looks to Raphael

To close the wounds

 

And listens for Gabriel’s

Trumpet call

 

As the cavern’s

Restless sleep

Calls the dream

 

Across

Across the desert

Of another land

 

I am the resurrection and I am the light.

Naked

Sometimes we meet another who “sees” straight through all our bullshit.

——————————————————–

And when His eyes

pierced me

and my melancholy cloak

of regret

 

At my side

the legion

of all my little deaths

now claustrophobic, pressing

 

Each razor slice

of my heart

cut deep by my own will,

they seeped a tear

 

The gauze of pretence

those secrets dressed

the unstitched wounds

naked, stark and naked

 

And my ghosts

walk ever with me

my compadres

my fiends and spectres

 

Not enough soap

nor water

to be clean again

not ever

 

What exorcism

might yet banish

these phantoms

of word and deed?

 

And His eyes said

love only love

and he passed to me

a single key

 

Writ thereupon

a single word

and in gold;

Compassion.

 

The Silence of the Heart

This arose whilst I was working directly with my heart centre, trying to open it wide and generate compassion for all sentient beings.


I breathe deeply,
Ex-hale all the day,
I ex-hale all the previous days
And all that has gone before.

I am clear and NOW,
It comes to me,
The rhythm of the heart

It beats and I hear,
The warmth spreads from within,
It is bare.

I feel it quicken,
My ribs feel cleaved,
And….
THERE it is.

The silence.

Beyond the tumult,
Close and Far,
All around.

Into the stillness it comes.

Before after
And
After before

The space between
The seconds of the clock
The time between
Two places

It hangs
Like a question mark from the sky

Then

Now

Tomorrow?