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Sunday, May 09, 2010

Buddhism: A Path for Everyone.

Buddha said that different beings have different capacities for understanding, different ways of thinking, different personalities and mentalities and cultural attitudes; and that teachings should be in accordance with this. The essence of Buddhism is lovingkindness and compassion and understanding emptiness. And all these different approaches are just many ways of allowing these real, innate qualities to manifest.

When we teach, any example that is understood by the teacher and the student can be used. Also, sometimes with people in the West, when they try meditation, they try too hard. They become very tight, their bodies become tense. Everything becomes blocked and difficult. Then they need to learn to relax and to rest the mind - with awareness but not so much tightness.

-Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, "Trust through Reason" (Summer 2007)

James: This quote is courtesy of Philip Ryan at Tricycle Magazine.

~Peace to all beings~

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panchenlama said...

The Buddha is the perfection of enlightened wisdom.

In the Vinaya Pitaka of the Pali Canon, it is historically recorded the following:

"Now, at that time the Buddha was teaching, surrounded by a great company which contained the Rajah (King), and his Court.

Then Devadatta, rising from his seat and throwing his upper robe over one shoulder, bowed towards the Buddha with folded palms and said: 'My Lord, the Buddha is now grown old, is aged, far gone in years, He has come to life's end. Let now my Lord Buddha live without worry. Let Him dwell, given to such happiness as this life contains. Let Him hand over the care of the Buddha Sangha unto me, and I will take charge of the Buddha Sangha.'

The Buddha replied:

'Enough, Devadatta! Seek not to take charge of the Buddha Sangha!'

Then a second time and yet a third time did Devadatta make the same request and get the same reply. Then said the Buddha:

'Not even to Sariputta and Moggallana, the Great, would I hand over the care of the Buddha Sangha; much less to one like thee, a vile lick-spittle!'

Devadatta consumed with the ambition to lead, devoured by the ambition of gain and fame, made a schism in the Buddha Sangha, and formed a sect of his own.

Bonsai Doug said...

I've listened to many of Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche's videos on his site ( ) and on YouTube ( ), and it is truly a calming and pleasant experience just to hear him speak.

Buddhist_philosopher said...

Beautiful quote, James. Thanks to you and Philip for passing it along.

FranciscoL_Swaney0806 said...


GusF_Finkbeiner1209 said...


Glennie9654 said...


Mushinronsha said...

That's actually a very poignant quote for me James.

I recently read some criticisms of Stephen Batchelor (author of Buddhism Without Beliefs) where the critic complained that because Mr Batchelor was a westerner he could never hope to understand Buddhism in any significant way and that he proves that by writing off karma and rebirth as allegory, not fact.
This annoyed me, not just because of the undertones of racism, but because the criticism itself was unjustified.

If "beings have different capacities for understanding, different ways of thinking, different personalities and mentalities and cultural attitudes; and that teachings should be in accordance with this." then teaching that karma and rebirth are allegory is not wrong in the least, but aligns perfectly with what the Buddha says; it is what the westerner understands as true, it does not inhibit right thought or action, lovingkindness, compassion or understanding emptiness and so it is therefore correct Buddhist practice.

They call him James Ure said...

@Mushinronsha: I absolutely think that Buddha taught differently to each persons understand and needs. If karma seen in this life is most helpful to aid one if overcoming suffering then ending that suffering is more important than the literal truth of karma or rebirth. IMHO.

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