The Essence of Buddhism

The essence of Buddhism has always been the same throughout infinite time and space. No matter what plane of existence that it is found, no matter what language that it is taught in, and no matter what culture that holds it, the essence has always, and will always be wisdom and compassion.

~ Chamtrul Rinpoche

Buddha Head

Mirrors and Us….

I am posted this because it has touched on something Nancy (Spirit Lights The Way) & I have commented on recently…maybe it will help you too? 🙂 It is from Tricycle, so feel free to go to their website for more information on this ….

“Pamela Gayle White, from Week 4 of the ongoing Tricycle Retreat, “Letting Go” that she is leading along with Khedrub Zangmo,

Something that has been very helpful for me is trying to understand just how subjective my own interpretation of sticky situations and difficult relationships can be. I have a story to illustrate this.

Once, during my first retreat with a group of people, there was a woman in our retreat center that most of the rest of us found irritating. We didn’t want to be irritated by her, for we were all trying to be good Buddhists, budding bodhisattvas. It bothered us that she was pushing our buttons continuously because that’s not how we saw ourselves—as ordinary neurotic people.

Of course, we talked about it, about her, as people do. Then one day four of us got together in one of the girls rooms and decided that each of us was going to write down what exactly it was about this woman, Therese, that bothered us so very much. We each got a piece of paper and a pen and were very happy to have a little project to work on. This was at lunch time so we weren’t breaking any retreat rules. We all sat down and wrote our pieces and then compared them. The result was a revelation.

One of the girls, who couldn’t throw anything away, said “Therese, she’s just such a packrat! She’s got this thing about grasping where she just can’t let go. It bothers me, I find it so irritating.” Then, the oldest among us had written, “Therese is just so old. She really doesn’t catch on very fast.” It was clearly about her own fears of getting older. Then the next of us shared that she had written “Therese, y’know, she just isn’t very swift.” This was the person who was having the hardest time learning the practices. Then, the fourth person, me, who has long been working with my natural tendency of being quite irritable, had written, “She’s just so irritable! There’s always this anger in her that is just waiting to flare up!”

We looked at each other and could see the problem wasn’t Therese at all. It was such a lesson.

Retreat isn’t just about practice, it’s also about these fabulous lessons that we learn about ourselves and others. Therese was a mirror that taught all of us. She taught me to ask, whenever I am having a difficult experience with someone, “what it is in me that can’t stand the mirror?”

*names were changed to protect the innocent

 

Moral Education begins at home

Whatever the intellectual quality of the education given our children, it is vital that it include elements of love and compassion, for nothing guarantees that knowledge alone will be truly useful to human beings. Among the major troublemakers’ society has known, many were well-educated and had great knowledge, but they lacked a moral education in qualities such as compassion, wisdom, and clarity of vision. ~ His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama

 

Healthy Mental & Emotional growth

For healthy mental and emotional growth, we need a gentle, skillful, balanced approach, avoiding extremes.

If we are becoming arrogant and self-important, the antidote is to think about our own problems and sufferings, to bring us down to earth.

But if we are feeling overwhelmed, discouraged, helpless and depressed, it’s important to reflect on our positive qualities or achievements to uplift our minds. ~ His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama