“B” is for Buddha

A traditional way, and I think very useful place, to begin practice is to take refuge; in Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.

“B” is for Buddha.

better B

BUDDHA:  Realization of Truth

  • Historically, there was an actual person: Gautama, a human being who did attain Awakening,  and, was able to show us all how to access our awakened qualities also.
  • Thich Nhat Hanh writes,

When we say, “I take refuge in the Buddha” we should also understand that “The Buddha takes refuge in me,” because without the second part the first part is not complete. The Buddha needs us for awakening, understanding, and love to be real things and not just concepts. They must be real things that have real effects on life. Whenever I say, “I take refuge in the Buddha,” I hear “Buddha takes refuge in me.”

To take refuge in Buddha is to know that we are whole, complete; filled completely; integral and full of integrity:

integrity    –noun

  1. adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.
  2. the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished
  3. a sound, unimpaired, or perfect condition

That’s what we’re looking for. A safe place in which we can feel accepted, WHOLE, entire, and undiminished

  • just the way we are
  • not divided into parts

We can look to, take refuge, in the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha to help us feel safe. And, in feeling safe, to fully know our experience for what it is. To experience ourselves and our lives fully.

Do we really know we are? Do I really know who I am? Who am I? That’s the question.

HK quote

Pictures from this past Saturday, CC celebrated Buddha’s Birthday in Koshland Park:

“a” is for here

An “at” symbol for our first letter in the alphabet. In our contemporary world, it’s used to locate; especially a location in the digital world. Seems appropriate for the beginning of the launch of a webpage.

“At” means “Here”; right here; exactly here.

Dogen Zenji, the Japanese founder of Soto Zen, in his Genjo Koan(“The Actualization of Reality”) writes:

Here is the place; here the way unfolds.

We begin where we are….and it’s is right here in the midst of our lives. Nowhere else.  We may think of past or future but we physically are always here. It’s the literal or figurative acts of running from or turning away from what exactly is happening in each moment that causes us dukkha — dis-ease; suffering; dissatisfaction.

We can stop the running and the turning away. This is the first (and yet continual) step in practicing: to stop; to pause if a full stop isn’t possible yet. Stop/pause to investigate with curiosity and open interest in whatever is going on right here, right now.

“At” is to arrive. In the front entrance of my apartment I have a print of a Thich Nhat Hanh calligraphy which says:

I have arrived. I am home.

Welcome Home.    @ this very place, your/our/the way unfolds.


A talk related to this theme:

Welcome Home
SFZC Buddha Hall, Saturday, May 21, 2011

where the path is available to all