The radiant light, unhindered and inconceivable, eradicates suffering and brings realization of joy; the excellent Name, perfectly embodying all practices, eliminates obstacles and dispels doubt. This is the teaching and practice for our latter age; devote yourself solely to it. It is eye and limb in this defiled world; do not fail to endeavor in it. Accepting and living the supreme, universal Vow, then, abandon the defiled and aspire for the pure. Reverently embracing the Tathagata's teaching, respond in gratitude to his benevolence and be thankful for his compassion.

~ Shinran Shonin, Passages on the Pure Land Way

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Hanamatsuri 2015

"Monks, there is one person whose birth into this world is for the welfare and happiness of many, out of compassion for the world, for the gain and welfare and happiness of gods and humanity. Who is this one person? It is the Tathagata, who is a Worthy One, a Fully Enlightened One."
~ Anguttara Nikaya ~
Over 2,500 years ago, there arose in this world the greatest of two-footed beings ever to walk upon the earth. This "lion among men" was the Buddha Shakyamuni. By realizing the highest, perfect enlightenment, He awakened to the ultimate Truth, and through His teachings (the Buddha-Dharma) He shared this Truth with everyone who was ready to hear and willing to listen. By proclaiming widely the great Original Vow of Amitabha, He opened the path to emancipation for all, regardless of condition or ability. Therefore, today we remember with gratitude and celebrate with joy the auspicious birth of the Great Sage, our true teacher, guide, and friend.
I take refuge in the Buddha.
I take refuge in the Dharma.
I take refuge in the Sangha.

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