How Buddha looks like

Buddha visited my teacher’s enlightened teacher. Among all the pictures shown to him, this is the picture which he identified as resembling Buddha the most.

May we all find inner peace.

 

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My dream wedding gown

Been fantasizing about my wedding gown recently and I decided that I’ll like to go with…

“Elegant and simple”

Here it is….

Aloneness and Loneliness

“Developing an attitude of not clinging requires, at first, that we spend a certain amount of time alone. Many of us cling to the experience of being with others out of fear of being lonely. But aloneness is not loneliness. Rather, it is the singleness that creates space for us to think, reflect, meditate and free the mind from noise and attachment. As our greed, hatred and delusion dimish through our solitary practice of mindfulness and meditation, we strengthen our ability to be with others without clinging. When the mind is at peace, we can be in the company with many people, without attachment and the suffering it brings.” – Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness by Bhante Henepola Gunaratana

Today, I enjoyed something I never thought I would…. shopping and eating alone in town. Never did I imagine that I would be so at ease with it. I took the time to enjoy “the sole orchestra” at Shaw, sitting there while i listen to him play to the theme song of Titantic. He’s great, btw. Met a broker while walking around and he expressed his surprise when he realised i came to town alone.

I’m starting to be comfortable in my own skin. I like this. Yes, I could get used to it.

 

The sole orchestra

Cakkavattisihananda Sutta: The Lion’s Roar on the Turning of the Wheel

This is the sutta that was taught in class yesterday.

It is very interesting as Buddha defined and explained how one can increase lifespan, beauty, happiness and power.

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27. ‘Monks, be an islands unto yourselves, be a refuge unto yourselves with no other refuge. Let the Dhamma be your island, let the Dhamma be your refuge, with no other refuge.

And how does a monk dwell as an island unto himself, as a refuge unto himself with no other refuge, with the Dhamma as his island, with the Dhamma as his refuge, with no other refuge?

Here, a monk abides contemplating body as body, ardent, clearly aware and mindful, having put aside hankering and fretting for the world.

Here, a monk abides contemplating feelings as feelings, ardent, clearly aware and mindful, having put aside hankering and fretting for the world.

Here, a monk abides contemplating mind as mind, ardent, clearly aware and mindful, having put aside hankering and fretting for the world.

Here, a monk abides contemplating mind-objects as mind-objects, ardent, clearly aware and mindful, having put aside hankering and fretting for the world.

28. ‘Keep to your own preserves, monks, to your ancestral haunts. If you do so, your life-span will increase, your beauty will increase, your happiness will increase, your wealth will increase, your power will increase. ‘And what is the length of life for a monk?

Here, a monk develops the road to power which is concentration of intention accompanied by effort of will, the road to power which is concentration of energy accompanied by effort of will, the road to power which is concentration of consciousness accompanied by effort of will, the road to power which is concentration of investigations accompanied by effort of will.

By frequently practising these four roads to power he can, if he wishes,
live for a full century, or the remaining part of a century.

This is what I call the length of life for a monk.

‘And what is the beauty for a monk?

Here a monk practises right conduct, is restrained according to the discipline, is perfect in behaviour and habits, sees danger in the slightest fault, and trains in the rules of training he has undertaken.

That is the beauty for a monk.

‘And what is happiness for a monk?

Here a monk, detached from sense desire detached from unwholesome mental states, enters and remains in the First Jhana, which is with thinking and pondering (initial application and sustained application), born of detachment, filled with delight and joy.

And with the subsiding of thinking and pondering, by gaining inner tranquillity and oneness of mind, enters and remains in the Second Jhana, which without thinking and pondering (initial application and sustained application), born of concentration, filled with delight and joy.

And with the fading away of delight, remaining imperturbable, mindful and clearly aware, he experiences in himself the joy of which the Noble Ones say: “Happy is he who dwells with equanimity and mindfulness“, he enters the Third Jhana.

And, having given up pleasure and pain, and with the disappearance of former gladness and sadness, he enters and remains in the Fourth Jhana, which is beyond pleasure and pain, and purified by equanimity and mindfulness.

That is happiness for a monk. ‘And what is wealth for a monk?

Here, a monk, with his heart filled with loving-kindness, dwells suffusing one quarter, the second, the third, the fourth. Thus he dwells suffusing the whole world, upwards, downwards, across – everywhere, always with the mind filled with loving-kindness, abundant, unbounded, without hate or ill-will.

Then, with his heart filled with compassion, dwells suffusing one quarter, the second, the third, the fourth. Thus he dwells suffusing the whole world, upwards, downwards, across – everywhere, always with the mind filled with compassion, abundant, unbounded, without hate or ill-will.

Then, with his heart filled with sympathetic joy, dwells suffusing one quarter, the second, the third, the fourth. Thus he dwells suffusing the whole world, upwards, downwards, across – everywhere, always with the mind filled with sympathetic joy, abundant, unbounded, without hate or ill-will.

Then, with his heart filled with equanimity, dwells suffusing one quarter, the second, the third, the fourth. Thus he dwells suffusing the whole world, upwards, downwards, across – everywhere, always with the mind filled with equanimity, abundant, unbounded, without hate or ill-will.

That is the wealth for a monk.

‘And what is the power for a monk?

Here, a monk, by destruction of the corruptions, enters into and abides in that corruptionless liberation of heart and liberation by wisdom which he has attained, in this very life, by his own super-knowledge and realisation.

That is the power for a monk.

‘Monks, I do not consider any power so hard to conquer as the power of Mara.
It is used by this building-up of wholesome states that this merit increases.’

Thus the Lord spoke, and the monks were delighted and rejoiced at his words.

Cakkavatti-Sihanada Sutta – The Lion’s Roar Discourse on the Turning of the Wheel Sutta Pitaka – Nigha Nikaya

Source: http://www.basicbuddhism.org/index.cfm?GPID=29

Fallen by the wayside

“Escapism is mental diversion by means of entertainment or recreation, as an”escape” from the perceived unpleasant or banal aspects of daily life.” – Wikipedia

Today, I feel numb. At peace but numb. I’m not unhappy but I won’t say I’m jumping for joy either.

Why does it feel like i’m running away? When can I stop running? It’s amazing how far my mind can run. How it finds refuge in all the other peripheral stuff just so that I don’t have to face up to it. You can run, but you cant hide. Not forever.

I know you think I’m holding you down

And I’ve fallen by the wayside now

And I don’t understand the same things as you

But I do

Love & Other Drugs

Quick 101 on Love & Other Drugs:

A woman suffering from Parkinson’s befriends a drug rep working for Pfizer against 1990s Pittsburgh backdrop. Maggie and Jamie’s evolving relationship takes them both by surprise, as they find themselves under the influence of the ultimate drug: love.

Love & Other Drugs Favourite Scene (click to view video)

Jamie Randall: I’m full of shit, okay? No I’m… I’m *knowingly* full of shit. Because, uh… because uh, uh… I have… I have *never* cared about anybody or anything in my entire life. And the thing is, everybody just kind of accepted that. Like, “That’s just Jamie.” And then you!… Jesus. *You*. You. You didn’t see me that way. I have never known anyone who actually believed that I was enough. Until I met you. And then you made me believe it, too. So, uh… unfortunately… I need you. And you need me.

Maggie Murdock: No I don’t.

Jamie Randall: Yes you do.

Maggie Murdock: No I don’t.

Jamie Randall: *Yes*, you do.

Maggie Murdock: Stop it, stop saying that. Maggie Murdock

Jamie Randall: You need someone to take care of you.

Maggie Murdock: No, I don’t!

Jamie Randall: Everybody does.

Maggie Murdock: I’m gonna need you more than you need me.

Jamie Randall: That’s okay.

Maggie Murdock: [crying] No it’s not! It isn’t *fair*! I have places to go!

Jamie Randall: You’ll go there. I just may have to carry you.

Maggie Murdock: …I can’t ask you to do that.

Jamie Randall: You didn’t.

Jamie Randall: Let’s just say in some alternate universe, there’s a couple just like us, okay? Only she’s healthy and he’s perfect. And their world is about how much they’re going to spend on vacation or who’s in a bad mood that day, or whether they feel guilty about having a cleaning lady. I don’t want to be those people. I want us. You. This.

The movie ended with a round up by:

Jamie Randall: Sometimes the things you want the most don’t happen and what you least expect happens. I don’t know – you meet thousands of people and none of them really touch you. And then you meet one person and your life is changed forever.

5 Love Language

Of the countless ways we can show love to one another, five key categories, or five love languages, proved to be universal and comprehensive—everyone has a love language, and we all identify primarily with one of the five love languages: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch.

  • Words of Affirmation

Actions don’t always speak louder than words. If this is your love language, unsolicited compliments mean the world to you. Hearing the words, “I love you,” are important—hearing the reasons behind that love sends your spirits skyward. Insults can leave you shattered and are not easily forgotten.

  • Quality Time

In the vernacular of Quality Time, nothing says, “I love you,” like full, undivided attention. Being there for this type of person is critical, but really being there—with the TV off, fork and knife down, and all chores and tasks on standby—makes your significant other feel truly special and loved. Distractions, postponed dates, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful.

  • Receiving Gifts

Don’t mistake this love language for materialism; the receiver of gifts thrives on the love, thoughtfulness, and effort behind the gift. If you speak this language, the perfect gift or gesture shows that you are known, you are cared for, and you are prized above whatever was sacrificed to bring the gift to you. A missed birthday, anniversary, or a hasty, thoughtless gift would be disastrous—so would the absence of everyday gestures.

  • Acts of Service

Can vacuuming the floors really be an expression of love? Absolutely! Anything you do to ease the burden of responsibilities weighing on an “Acts of Service” person will speak volumes. The words he or she most want to hear: “Let me do that for you.” Laziness, broken commitments, and making more work for them tell speakers of this language their feelings don’t matter.

  • Physical Touch

This language isn’t all about the bedroom. A person whose primary language is Physical Touch is, not surprisingly, very touchy. Hugs, pats on the back, holding hands, and thoughtful touches on the arm, shoulder, or face—they can all be ways to show excitement, concern, care, and love. Physical presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect or abuse can be unforgivable and destructive.

Determining Your Own Love Language

Since you may be speaking what you need, you can discover your own love language by asking yourself these questions:

  • How do I express love to others?
  • What do I complain about the most?
  • What do I request most often?

Speaking in your spouse’s love language probably won’t be natural for you. Dr. Chapman says, “We’re not talking comfort. We’re talking love. Love is something we do for someone else. So often couples love one another but they aren’t connecting. They are sincere, but sincerity isn’t enough.”

Fading Tingle and Empty Love Tanks

After the first or second year of marriage, when the initial “tingle” is starting to fade, many couples find that their “love tanks” are empty. They may have been expressing love for their spouse, but in reality they may have been speaking a different love language. The best way to fill your spouse’s love tank is to express love in their love language. Each of us has a primary love language. Usually, couples don’t have the same love language.

Tank Check

Dr. Chapman recommends that you have a “Tank Check” 3 nights a week for 3 weeks. Ask one another “How is your love tank tonight?” If, on a scale from zero to ten, it is less than 10, then ask “What can I do to help fill it?” Then do it to the best of your ability.

Inspiration: Silly-via