To read online please click Running Tide Winter Issue 20
I imagine the Pureland to be a room in which the atmosphere is thick with love. In this room, are numerous Bodhisattvas, some are lying down, others are sitting on cushions, and even more are standing up and walking around crying out for for Nyorai. It is truly a magnificent sight to see. All these majestic figures, each accomplished in one or more aspect of the Dharma, still expressing their longing and their love to re-connect with the Buddha and live according to the Dharma.
I imagine myself walking into this room where the ambience is warm with love, so much so that my own longing and wish to be with the Buddhas of the past, present and future feels duly acknowledged as the most appropriate feeling. There are people talking and discourses held which I take to be wise and inspiring but I remember none of that. The only thing I remember is this loving atmosphere.
two drops become one
One drop splits again into two
one of the two joins another one
and three become two
until two feels alone
and joins with another one
until they all split again
For me and others here at Amida, life is more meaningful with faith in Amida. And faith in the practice of the Nembutsu gives life a new meaning and understanding. A simple faith that enables us to experience Dukkha and affliction without betraying our own principles and acting in ways that we would later regret but rather supports us to live a life of no regret.
too late to redo the bed that was made and slept in by him - her lover and maid, a new day has broken and silence has begged forgiveness and pardon to all that was said in anger and jest the moon cast its shadow on the new night of year twenty and ten - what hope, what chance, what fortune befalls those who are wicked and caught in the thralls of madness and rage? In the midst of the fires of fathomless passions a tiny light shines on the steaming wet spires.
Marga - the way, the path of peace and liberation is an outcome of feeling inspired and entrusting oneself to the tathagatha's supreme vision. The eightfold path is based on three pillars - vision, morality, and wisdom. The wisdom comes from the recognition and acceptance of being totally foolish. To fully accept that following a good rule in life or higher order won't immunise us to the awful and terrible things that occur so naturally in life. This is what is emphasised in Pureland Buddhism - no matter what our attempts at being fully faithful, and acting totally skilful we cannot alter reality and change the fact that we are and will always be completely and totally foolish beings of wayward passion.
At best, we can try to keep our sights on a sublime vision of warmth, tenderness, and compassion and preserve conditions that shine light of the shadows cast by mara.
and his father remains
standing by watching
still as the night
the boy screams out
'catch me, dear god'
as he lands on the beam
of the first ray of light
no one saw any of this coming
except the seducer of time
who aroused the poor boy
giving everyone a fright
and perhaps fools reveal secrets worth nothing
but who really knows the difference?
There I was - small and stuck in a gigantic world of monsters and demons, beastly creatures breathing fire and burning everything in sight. Destruction was the name of the game until one day I became so small that I diminished into nothingness.
From nothingness I became something and emerged, standing outside I was enormous, every move I made shook the ground and rattled the clouds. The stationary bubble sat there very still while inside everything was shifting and changing.
She decided to reveal her secret in a way that would be understood by the heart and not with the brain. But he grimaced and grew angry. How immature and childish, how belittling and patronizing! So he fought back shouting at her to look at him and to stop treating him like a child. He still couldn't see the point - so futile was his life in a world that set seething dogs to get him and fools running after him with sharp knives all because he cut them off from greed and delusion.
How bored he was of life. He just couldn't see how anything could help anymore and though he wanted to hear that Truth might help, or that Freedom would work, what was never offered to him was the willingness to try and go into the ugly quagmire of the mind and feel the difficulties that came with two beings locked in conflict. Beauty's way was mysterious but lacked alot of will.
The will to walk into Truth and see the lies that he told her and others was missing. The will to struggle and fight with shadows locked within Freedom was weak. And the will to expose and uncover the bloodstained sheets within Beauty's cupboard was absent and so Love put on his coat, heaved a sigh and said thanks for nothing.
I'm not okay ...pause ... in so many ways, I wish that I were okay, and even try to do things, simple things and then more daring things just to reassure myself that I'm actually more than fine, I'm great, I'm wonderful, but then in doing these small simple things I see just how not okay I am and in taking risks and really pushing myself to be okay I see how more than not okay I really am, and not just that, but I see that you're not okay too and your not okayness makes my okayness not okay.
And that is okay. Actually, that is the reality and to pretend that things had to be okay for it to be okay would not be okay. That would add to my, your, our delusions.
What is okay is human afterall, and what is human is to feel. And to feel is not self and what is not self is other and what is other is okay, actually it's more than okay too, it's infinite and it's boundless - sort of like love.
So when there is love then we can relax into not being okay together.
I'm not okay, you're not okay, that's love.
going deeper into trailers
his feelings so real and based on illusions
her truth is just a bunch of lies
and based on real feelings
Pureland Buddhist Webpage
Friends of Amida Ning
A Network for those interested in all things spiritual
Buddhist psychology web page for Amida Trust training courses in Buddhist psychotherapy, Buddhist approaches to counselling, Engaged Buddhism, Applied Buddhist Psychology: course leaders David & Caroline Brazier and Sundari Gina Clayton
Jodo Shu Research Centre
Information about Jodo Shu Teachings
On-line journal of Shin Buddhism
A Comprehensive Website of Shin Buddhism
Jodo Shu Webring
Jodo Shu Pureland Buddhist and South Florida Buddhists
Website dedicated to Honen the founder of the Jodo Shu in Japan
Site for the Hangaku Jodo
The webpage for the Amida Sangha in Belgium
Virtual Pure Land Buddhism
Lots of Pureland resources
Shin Dharma Net
Information on Shin Buddhism
Three Wheels Temple
Shin Buddhist Temple in UK
Nembutsu New Zealand
Site promoting Nembutsu practice for people in New Zealand