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July 12, 2014  |  About the Berkley Center  |  Directions to the Center  |  Subscribe
 
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TRADITION

Buddhism

Buddhism1

Buddhism

Quotes (15)

Buddhism is a religion based on the spiritual and moral precepts of Siddhartha Gautama (c. fifth century BCE), a teacher known as the Buddha, who stressed liberation from the cycle of suffering and rebirth. There are around 470 million Buddhists worldwide, the majority in East and Southeast Asia. Buddhism stresses the value of peace, and many Buddhist leaders and organizations today are outspoken in their promotion of non-violence. Protests by Buddhist monks have shaped the modern politics of Asia, particularly in Vietnam, Burma, and Tibet. Buddhism has no definitive scriptural canon; each of its main branches, Theravada, Mahayana, and Tibetan, accepts a wide variety of overlapping texts as authoritative.


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  • The Buddha then sets out precise duties both for the sick and for those who nurse them: "If one's [preceptor, teacher, student, apprentice, fellow student of ones preceptor, or fellow apprentice of one's teacher] is present, [he] should tend to one as long as life lasts, and should stay until one's recovery. If no preceptor, teacher, student, apprentice, fellow student of one's preceptor, or fellow apprentice of one's teacher is present, the Community should tend to one. If he/it (i.e., the...
  • [T]hese three kinds of persons are found existing in the world... One who is like a rainless cloud, one who rains locally, and one who rains everywhere. Now what kind of person, bhikkhus, is like a rainless cloud? Here, a certain person is not a giver to anyone; he does not give food, drink, clothing... beds, lodging, and lamps to recluses and brahmans, to the poor, destitute, and needy. This kind of person is like a rainless cloud. Now what, bhikkhus, is the kind of person who rains locally?...
  • You make things worse when you flare up at someone who's angry. Whoever doesn't flare up at someone who's angry wins a battle hard to win. You live for the good of both—your own, the other's—when, knowing the other's provoked, you mindfully grow calm. When you work the cure of both—your own, the other's—those who think you a fool know nothing of Dhamma.
  • As they sat there, the Kalamas of Kesaputta said to the Blessed One, "Lord, there are some priests and contemplatives who come to Kesaputta. They expound and glorify their own doctrines, but as for the doctrines of others, they deprecate them, revile them, show contempt for them, and disparage them. And then other priests and contemplatives come to Kesaputta [and do the same]. They leave us absolutely uncertain and in doubt: Which of these venerable priests and contemplatives are speaking the...
  • The wise and virtuous shine like a blazing fire. He who acquires his wealth in harmless ways like to a bee that honey gathers, riches mount up for him like ant hill's rapid growth. With wealth acquired this way, a layman fit for household life, in portions four divides his wealth: thus will he friendship win. One portion for his wants he uses, two portions on his business spends, the fourth for times of need he keeps.
  • Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: "Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic, with a mind of good will, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading these people with an awareness imbued with good will and, beginning with them, we will keep pervading the...
  • What is the thing, O Gotama, whose killing you approve? [Buddha:] Having slain anger, one sleeps soundly; having slain anger, one does not sorrow; the killing of anger, O Brahmin, with its poisoned root and honeyed tip: this is the killing the noble ones praise, for having slain that, one does not sorrow.
  • As he was sitting to one side, King Pasenadi Kosala said to the Blessed One: "Just now, lord, while I was alone in seclusion, this train of thought arose in my awareness: 'Few are those people in the world who, when acquiring lavish wealth, don't become intoxicated and heedless, don't become greedy for sensual pleasures, and don't mistreat other beings. Many more are those who, when acquiring lavish wealth, become intoxicated and heedless, become greedy for sensual pleasures, and mistreat...
  • Once when the Buddha was living at Savatthi, King Pasenadi of Kosala ate a whole bucketful of food. The Buddha, discerning that King Pasenadi was engorged and panting, took the occasion to utter this verse: "When a person is constantly mindful, and knows when enough food has been taken, all their afflictions become more slender, they age more gradually, protecting their lives." Now at that time the brahman youth Sudassana was standing nearby, and King Pasenadi of Kosala addressed him: "Come...
  • Winning gives birth to hostility. Losing, one lies down in pain. The calmed lie down with ease, having set winning and losing aside.
  • A man may plunder as long as it serves his ends, but when others are plundered, he who has plundered gets plundered in turn. A fool thinks, "Now's my chance," as long as his evil has yet to ripen. But when it ripens, the fool falls into pain. Killing, you gain your killer. Conquering, you gain one who will conquer you; insulting, insult; harassing, harassment. And so, through the cycle of action, he who has plundered gets plundered in turn.
  • Then the Blessed One, having understood Brahma's invitation, out of compassion for beings, surveyed the world with the eye of an Awakened One... Just as in a pond of blue or red or white lotuses, some lotuses—born and growing in the water—might flourish while immersed in the water, without rising up from the water; some might stand at an even level with the water; while some might rise up from the water and stand without being smeared by the water—so too, surveying the world...
  • Now at that time a certain bhikkhu was sick with dysentery. Then the Blessed One, on an inspection with Ven. Ananda as his attendant saw the bhikkhu lying fouled in his own urine and excrement. The Blessed One sprinkled water on the bhikkhu, and Ven. Ananda washed him off. Then the Blessed One had the bhikkhus assembled and asked them: "Is there a sick bhikkhu in that dwelling over there?" "Yes, O Blessed One, there is." "And what is his illness?" "He has dysentery, O Blessed One." "But does...
  • There are, young householder, these six evil consequences in indulging in intoxicants which cause infatuation and heedlessness: (i) loss of wealth, (ii) increase of quarrels, (iii) susceptibility to disease, (iv) earning an evil reputation, (v) shameless exposure of body, (vi) weakening of intellect.
  • "When a person of no integrity acquires lavish wealth, he doesn't provide for the pleasure and satisfaction of [himself, his parents, his wife and children, his slaves, servants, and assistants, or his friends]. He doesn't institute for priests and contemplatives offerings of supreme aim, heavenly, resulting in happiness, leading to heaven. When his wealth isn't properly put to use, kings make off with it, or thieves make off with it, or fire burns it, or water sweeps it away, or hateful...