Meditation on Buddha

the way of great Compassion
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Nicholas
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Meditation on Buddha

Post by Nicholas » Thu Dec 26, 2019 8:32 pm

Many practices focus on mindfulness or concentration or meditation on Buddha. Since Buddha is a title and does not mean only Gautama Buddha these methods can be applied to any or all buddhas.

This new translation by Bhikshu Dharmamitra from Kalavinka Press give three major methods that are not identical. Here are some excerpts from the Introduction to this small (200 pages) book. Nāgārjuna on Mindfulness of the Buddha also contains a Glossary & Bibliography.
In his Treatise on the Ten Grounds, a third of the way through his
discussion of the first bodhisattva ground, Nāgārjuna explains the
“pure land” practice that involves reverential devotion to and invocation
of the name of a particular buddha with the aim of achieving
irreversibility on the bodhisattva path with the option of gaining
rebirth in that buddha’s purified buddha world. It is my translation
of that single-chapter discussion, “The Easy Practice” (Chapter 9)
that constitutes the first section of this book.

Later in that same text, in the final third of his discussion of the
first bodhisattva ground, Nāgārjuna explains in great detail how
to engage in “mindfulness of the Buddhas” practice in such a way
that one may then enter the pratyutpanna samādhi, the samādhi in
which one is able to see the buddhas of the ten directions and listen
to them teach the Dharma. It is my translation of that marvelously
detailed six-chapter discussion of “mindfulness of the Buddhas”
that forms the second section of this book.

Two thirds of the way through the immense (34-fascicle)
“Introduction” to his 100-fascicle Exegesis on the Great Perfection of
Wisdom Sutra
, Nāgārjuna presents a very detailed description of
“the eight recollections” of which the initial subsection is his discussion
of “recollection of the Buddha.” It is my translation of that
discussion that forms the third section of this book.
May all seek, find and follow the Path of selflessness.

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DNS
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Re: Meditation on Buddha

Post by DNS » Fri Dec 27, 2019 3:03 am

Image

Dipankara Buddha, venerated by all forms of Buddhism. He is listed at number 4 of the list of 28 prior Buddhas in the sutras.

The current Buddha of this dispensation, Gautama was the ascetic Sumedha at that time (seen here prostrating to Dipankara Buddha).

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Nicholas
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Re: Meditation on Buddha

Post by Nicholas » Fri Dec 27, 2019 5:08 pm

Nifty artwork David, where did you find it?

Also a note on the new book; the middle section on the deep samadhi that sees many buddhas makes up half the book.
May all seek, find and follow the Path of selflessness.

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Re: Meditation on Buddha

Post by DNS » Fri Dec 27, 2019 10:41 pm

Nicholas wrote:
Fri Dec 27, 2019 5:08 pm
Nifty artwork David, where did you find it?
Also a note on the new book; the middle section on the deep samadhi that sees many buddhas makes up half the book.
No place special; just wikipedia. :tongue:

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Nicholas
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Location: California

Re: Meditation on Buddha

Post by Nicholas » Thu Jan 23, 2020 11:29 pm

Here is part of the Introduction on the Easy Practice suggested by Nagarjuna:
Part One: The Easy Practice

In Nāgārjuna’s discussion of the first bodhisattva ground, in
response to a discouraged interlocutor fearful of the difficulty of
achieving “irreversibility” on the seemingly interminably long
bodhisattva path, he offers an alternative means for the bodhisattva
practitioner to very quickly and easily achieve irreversibility on
this path to buddhahood. This alternative means which he refers
to as “the easy practice” involves earnest invocation of the name of
particular buddhas who have vowed to come to the aid of anyone
who sincerely calls upon them. The practitioner who takes up this
“easy practice” is then said to be able to achieve irreversibility on
the path to buddhahood by this means.

In this chapter entitled “The Easy Practice,” Nāgārjuna first lists
the names of ten buddhas, one from each of the ten directions, stating
that, through the practice of invoking these buddhas’ names,
one can swiftly reach the ground of irreversibility. He then quotes a
long passage in the Questions of Precious Moon Sutra that describes
the purified buddha world of Meritorious Qualities Buddha off in
the East and describes how, through faith in this buddha, one may
achieve irreversibility on the bodhisattva path.

After quoting this sutra, Nāgārjuna then notes the identical circumstances
and practices associated with the nine other exemplary
buddhas that dwell off in the other nine directions. Having done so,
he then names and describes each of these other nine buddhas and
their buddha lands.

Next, in response to a questioner wondering if there are other
such buddhas, Nāgārjuna lists the names of Amitābha Buddha and
108 other such buddhas, after which he presents a 32-stanza verse
praising and describing Amitābha Buddha, his vows, his pure land,
his audience, and the advantages of achieving rebirth in his land.
This praise verse concludes with Nāgārjuna’s declaration of his own
personal aspiration to always be borne in mind by this buddha and
to succeed in achieving eternal purification of mind in Amitābha
Buddha’s presence.
May all seek, find and follow the Path of selflessness.

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Nicholas
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Re: Meditation on Buddha

Post by Nicholas » Fri Feb 28, 2020 6:47 pm

Within the large Nagarjuna Treatise on the Ten Grounds that Kalavinka Press just published are seven chapters that focus on meditation on Buddha. Here is a snip describing the listening audience that attends a Buddha teaching:
They [yakṣas, gandharvas, asuras, garuḍas, kinnaras, and mahoragas]
abide in the midst of an audience adorned by the presence of the
eight kinds of great āryas, surrounded by a great assembly of humans
and devas. When in attendance there, the dragons and golden-winged
garuḍa birds all listen together to the teaching of Dharma, remaining
free of any thoughts of mutual hostility.

Everyone in the entire assembly is imbued with a deeply sincere
sense of shame and dread of blame as, with reverential affection for
the Buddha, they all listen single-mindedly to the discourse of the
Buddha, accept and uphold it, reflect upon it, and practice in accordance
with what is taught. Because their minds are focused as they
listen and because their thoughts are pure, they are able to block any
interference by the hindrances. Everyone in the great assembly gazes
insatiably up at the Tathāgata, with all the hairs raised on their bodies,
with their eyes filled with tears, with their minds afire with intensity,
or with hearts filled with great joy.

Wherever people have become like this, one knows that their
minds have become purified. They remain there motionless and silent,
serenely still, and as if having entered dhyāna absorption. Their minds
are free of either love or hatred and remain undistracted by any extraneous
matters. They have thoughts of great compassion by which
they feel kindness and pity for beings, wishing to rescue them all.
Their minds do not descend into flattery or deviousness, but rather
have become utterly quiescent and pure as they distinguish what is
good from what is bad. They have an immensely strong determination
from which they neither fall away or shrink back and they do not
regard themselves as superior or others as inferior.
Page 349-50
May all seek, find and follow the Path of selflessness.

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