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BUDDHASASANA

dIE HeilsleHRE DES eRWACHTEN


Zeitschrift der Buddhistischen Gemeinschaft der LehrnachfolgeR in Deutschland

ISSN 2194-895X

Jg. 2 |Vol. 1 Sommer 2556 (2013)

Buddhasasana

INHALT
VORWORT Sommerhitze und Abkhlung GEDANKEN Umgang mit Lob und Tadel Glauben und Vertrauen GEDICHT Wunder und Visionen GESPRCH Verheiratet mit einer Buddhistin ARTIKEL (Englisch & Chinesisch) Mindfulness is not sati? Early Buddhist Criticism of Ditthi Buddhism in Malaysia Lennart Lopin Bhikkhu Buddharakkhita K. Don Premaseri KC Lim S. 13 S. 19 S. 26 S. 33 Kai Hofmann S. 11 Dennis Emmerich S. 9 Irmgard Feiner Csar Tapia S. 5 S. 8 Bhikkhu Thitadhammo S. 3

Righteous heart
BUCHREZENSIONEN Fhrer durch den Abhidhamma-Pitaka Rahula Walpola: Was der Buddha lehrt

Samaneri Agganyani Oliver Menner

S. 37 S. 38

IMPRESSUM
Buddhasasana Zeitschrift der Buddhistischen Gemeinschaft der Lehrnachfolger in Deutschland e.V. ISSN: 2194-895X Herausgeber: Buddhistische Gemeinschaft der Lehrnachfolger in Deutschland e.V. Major-Braun-Weg 12, D-85354 Freising Kontakt: E-Mail: buddhasasana@dhamma.de Tel.: 081618627310 Fax: 081618627312 Web: www.dhamma.de Redaktionsleitung: Thitadhammo Bhikkhu (V.i.S.d.P.)

Erscheinungsweise: Vierteljhrlich Mitarbeiter: Redaktion Chinesisch Englisch: KC Lim

Redaktion Deutsch: Oliver Menner

Buddhasasana enthlt Artikel, Beitrge und Leserbriefe ber Buddhistisches Leben und Lernen im Sinne des Theravada und ursprnglichen Buddhismus. Beitrge knnen eingereicht werden in den Sprachen Deutsch, Englisch, Chinesisch und Thai. Diese werden redaktionell geprft und ggf. bearbeitet. Ein Anspruch auf Verffentlichung besteht generell nicht. Kein Verkauf. Die Abgabe erfolgt gratis. Keine gewerbliche Anzeigenaufnahme. Sie knnen die Arbeit des Buddhistischen Klosters Freising und der Buddhistischen Gemeinschaft mit Ihrer Spende untersttzen. Auf Wunsch erwhnen wir Sie gerne in der Rubrik unserer Untersttzer. 2013 BGdL e.V. Alle Rechte vorbehalten. Printed in Germany

Sommer 2556 (2013)

VORWORT

Liebe Leser und Leserinnen, Namo Buddhaya!

Inmitten der Sommerhitze sehnen sich die Menschen nach Abkhlung, genieen unter freiem Himmel die luftige Sommerbrise und den schtzenden Schatten von Bumen. Genauso wie unsere Krper bei solch sengender Sonnenglut Zuflucht bei Seen und Flssen suchen, so finden unsere vor Sorgen und Leid brennenden Herzen wohltuendes Erlschen sowie den Geist strkende Erfrischung beim Eintauchen in den khlen Weisheitsozean des Dhammas. Wie kostbar deswegen die Gelegenheit ist, mit dieser zum Heil fhrenden Weisheitslehre in Kontakt kommen zu knnen, darauf weist uns der Erwachte mit den Worten hin: Schwer ist es, die wahre Lehre zu hren! 1 Die wiederum aus der Begegnung mit der Lehre resultierende Dankbarkeit, die Zufriedenheit, welche aus ihrer
1

Anwendung entsteht, der Respekt gegenber der Lehre selbst und allen, die sie umsetzen und vorleben, sowie die Bescheidenheit, hinsichtlich der noch bestehenden eigenen Unvollkommenheit zusammen lassen uns des Segens, den die Lehre fr uns darstellt, erst richtig bewut werden. Somit ist die Lehre zur rechten Zeit hren zu knnen jedes Mal von neu-

kiccha saddhammassavana, Dhammapada, Vers 182.

Buddhasasana

em ein groes Glck, welches unser Leben bereichert und mit Sinn anfllt.2 Daher freue ich mich nun ganz besonders, Ihnen mit dieser Ausgabe von BUDDHASASANA Die Heilslehre des Erwachten wieder einen kleinen Beitrag zur Vermittlung der Buddhalehre anbieten zu knnen. Nach einer etwas lngeren Pause, die bedingt war durch den Umzug in neue Rumlichkeiten, kann sich das Redaktionsteam ab sofort wieder mit der notwendigen Aufmerksamkeit und Ruhe der Herausgabe dieser Schrift widmen, und dies jetzt schon im 2. Jahrgang. Als ausgesprochen erfreulich zu vermelden ist, da die Redaktion Untersttzung durch zwei neue Schreiber und einen gelernten Redakteur erhlt, welche unser ehrenamtlich arbeitendes Team ergnzen.3 Gemeinsam haben wir nun auf der letzten Redaktionsbesprechung beschlossen, knftig diese Zeitschrift in vier Ausgaben pro Jahr aufzulegen. Darber hinaus planen wir, in Abstnden Themenhefte zu einzelnen Schwerpunkten aus der Buddhalehre

und zu aktuellen Anliegen des Lebens herauszugeben. Bei allen Beitrgen liegt es uns am Herzen, stets auf der Grundlage des eigentlichen Buddhawortes (buddhavcana) die Themen so zu erschlieen, da es dem Leser als Orientierungs- und Verstndnishilfe dienen kann. Der Dhamma soll dabei stets im Mittelpunkt stehen.

Mit Metta grt Sie herzlichst, Ihr

Bhikkhu Philipp Thitadhammo

thitadhammo@dhamma.de
2

Gravo ca nivto ca, santuhi ca kataut; Klena

dhammassavana eta magalamuttama, Magalasutta, Vers 9


3

Fr unser Redaktionsteam suchen wir jedoch auch weiterhin ehrenamtliche Mitarbeiter/innen sowie Autoren.

Sommer 2556 (2013)

GEDANKEN

Umgang mit Lob und Tadel

Irmgard Feiner Freising

Selo yath ekaghano vtena na samrati; evam nindpasamssu, na samijanti pandit. (Dhammapada, Vers 82) Wie ein fester Felsen nicht erschttert wird vom Wind, so wird auch der Weise nicht bewegt von Lob und Tadel. Schon von Kind auf habe ich gelernt, da Eltern oder Erzieher, spter dann das Arbeitsumfeld durch Lob oder Tadel mein Verhalten gewertet haben, was gut und richtig ist. Fr die Erziehung mag dies notwendig sein, um gewnschtes Verhalten zu bekommen und unerwnschtes mglichst abzustellen bzw. gar nicht zu erlernen. Ich habe mich also gut gefhlt, wenn ich gelobt wurde (und mit Geld belohnt), schlecht gefhlt, wenn irgendetwas an mir kritisiert wurde. Als junge Erwachsene fhlte ich mich mit der Fortfhrung dieser Kindheitserfahrung der Welt hilflos ausgeliefert und habe oft gelitten. Erst im Laufe der Zeit und mit Hilfe der buddhistischen Lehre ist mir klar

geworden, da ich nicht schlecht bin, weil Jemand Anderer mich kritisiert. Meist steckt eine Absicht des Anderen dahinter. Seit ich das wei, kann ich in den meisten Fllen trennen zwischen mir als Person (ich bin nicht als Mensch schlecht, weil Jemandem eine Verhaltensweise an mir nicht pat) und der gewnschten Vernderung meines Verhaltens. Wieso soll ich stndig versuchen, den wechselnden Ansprchen meiner Umwelt gerecht zu werden und mich wandeln und wandeln, aber nie auf mein Herz hren und mir selber treu bleiben? Wandlung ja, wenn sie aus der Erkenntnis kommt, aber nicht, wenn sie gefordert wird. Gerade im Arbeitsbereich ist die gewnschte nderung vielfach willkrlich, kaum ist eine Bedingung erfllt, wird die nchste gefordert. Wechselt der Chef, kommen neue Regeln hinzu und im Kollegenkreis kostet es auch enorme Anpassungsfhigkeit, Tag fr Tag mit den Besonderheiten der Mitmenschen zu leben. Im Arbeitsleben mu ich mich in die Ablufe einfgen, kann mir aber dank der Verinnerlichung der obigen Buddhaworte eine innere Unabhngigkeit bewahren (wobei ich noch lange nicht weise bin).

Buddhasasana

Ich bin auch nicht mehr abhngig vom Lob, wobei ehrliches Lob etwas sehr Schnes ist, wenn es reinen Herzens und ohne Hintergedanken ausgesprochen wird. Ich bin innerlich viel unabhngiger geworden, falle aber manches Mal auch wieder in alte Verhaltensweisen zurck. Ich mu einfach weiter lernen.

Der Weise, der Besonnene durchschaut sie, erkennt sie als dem Wechsel unterworfen. Erwnschte Dinge qulen ihn nicht mehr und auch bei unerwnschten kommt ihm kein Verdru. In ihm sind Hingeneigtsein und auch Widerwille zerstrt, vergangen, nicht mehr da. Die sorgenfreie, laut're Sttte kennend, ist zu des Daseins anderem Ufer er gelangt.

Was sagt der Erwachte zu Lob und Tadel? Stellen aus dem Tipitaka zur Erluterung Visuddhimagga, Kapitel 22 Als 'Weltgesetze' (loka-dhamma) gelten 8 Dinge, da diese, solange die Welt besteht, nie aufhren werden, nmlich: Gewinn und Verlust, Achtung und Verachtung, Glck und Unglck, Lob und Tadel.

Anguttara Nikaya, XIII. 6

Anguttara Nikaya, XIII. 5 Gewinn, Verlust, Verehrung und Verachtung, auch Lob und Tadel, Freude sowie Leid, gar wandelbar sind diese Weltgesetze, voll Unbestand, dem Wechsel unterworfen.

Genau wie den unwissenden Weltling, ihr Mnche, treffen auch den wissenden, edlen Jnger Gewinn und Verlust, Ehre und Verachtung, Lob und Tadel, Freude und Leid. Worin besteht nun hierbei die Verschiedenheit, die Besonderheit, worin der Unterschied zwischen dem wissenden, edlen Jnger und dem unwissenden Weltling?

Da, ihr Mnche, wird dem unwissenden Weltling Gewinn zuteil. Nicht aber berlegt er sich dabei und versteht es

Sommer 2556 (2013)

nicht der Wirklichkeit gem: 'Entstanden ist mir zwar dieser Gewinn, doch er ist vergnglich, elend, dem Wechsel unterworfen.' Und es wird ihm Verlust zuteil, Ehre, Verachtung, Lob, Tadel, Freude und Leid. Nicht aber berlegt er sich dabei und versteht es nicht der Wirklichkeit gem: 'Entstanden ist mir zwar ... dieses Leid, doch es ist vergnglich, elend, dem Wechsel unterworfen.' Und Gewinn und Verlust, Ehre und Verachtung, Lob und Tadel, Freude und Leid halten seinen Geist umsponnen. Am Gewinn, der ihm zuteilwird, hngt er, und Verlust verdriet ihn. An der Ehre, die ihm zuteilwird, hngt er, und Verachtung verdriet ihn. Am Lob, das ihm zuteilwird, hngt er und Tadel verdriet ihn. An der Freude, die ihm zuteilwird, hngt er, und das Leid verdriet ihn. So der Zuneigung und Abneigung verfallen, wird er nicht erlst vom Geborenwerden, Altern und Sterben, von Sorge, Jammer, Schmerz, Trbsal und Verzweiflung, wird er nicht erlst vom Leiden, so sage ich. Da wird nun aber, ihr Mnche, einem wissenden, edlen Jnger Gewinn zuteil. Er aber berlegt dabei und versteht es der Wirklichkeit gem: 'Entstanden ist mir zwar dieser Gewinn, doch er ist vergnglich, elend, dem Wechsel unterworfen.' Und es wird ihm Verlust zuteil, Ehre, Verachtung, Lob, Tadel, Freude und Leid. Er aber berlegt dabei und versteht es der Wirklichkeit

gem: 'Entstanden ist mir zwar... dieses Leid, doch es ist vergnglich, elend, dem Wechsel unterworfen.' Und Gewinn und Verlust, Ehre und Verachtung, Lob und Tadel, Freude und Leid halten seinen Geist nicht umsponnen Am Gewinn, der ihm zuteilwird, hngt er nicht, und Verlust verdriet ihn nicht. An der Ehrung, die ihm zuteilwird, hngt er nicht, und Verachtung verdriet ihn nicht. Am Lob, das ihm zuteilwird, hngt er nicht, und Tadel verdriet ihn nicht. An der Freude, die ihm zuteilwird, hngt er nicht, und Leid verdriet ihn nicht. Sich so von Zuneigung und Abneigung frei machend, wird er erlst vom Geborenwerden, Altern und Sterben, von Sorge, Jammer, Schmerz, Trbsal und Verzweiflung, wird er erlst vom Leiden, so sage ich.

Buddhasasana

Glauben und Vertrauen: Was mich das Klma Sutta lehrt


Csar Tapia Freising Glauben bedeutet, Respekt zu zeigen, Respekt fr das Geschehen auf der Erde oder in der Natur. Glauben bedeutet auch, Respekt zu haben vor den Gttern, wie es seit Jahrtausenden bei den Naturvlkern der Fall ist. Wichtig ist es heutzutage aber auch ganz besonders, Respekt vor der eigenen Person zu haben, um so zu einer positiven Entwicklung der eigenen Persnlichkeit finden zu knnen. Einen gesunden Glauben zu besitzen

bedeutet auch selbststndig und unabhngig zu sein. Denn seinen Glauben verlieren kann nur derjenige, der den Glauben mit einer Institution oder Symbolen untrennbar verbunden hat, nicht aber derjenige, der sich mit den Inhalten des eigentlichen Gedankengutes der Religion beschftigt hat. Wie auch aktuelle Diskussionen und Schwierigkeiten zeigen, werden gerade diejenigen in ihrem Glauben erschttert, die die Vertreter oder Symbole ihrer Religion mit ihrem eigenen Glauben gleichsetzen. berleben wird der Glaube nur bei demjenigen, der seinen Glauben tatschlich selbst lebt und praktiziert. (Vgl. Klma Sutta, AN III. 66)

Sommer 2556 (2013)

GEDICHT Wunder und Vision


in Anlehnung an Die Kunst der kleinen Schritte von Antoine de Saint-Exupry

Hilf mir, das Nchste so gut wie mglich zu tun und die jetzige Stunde als die wichtigste zu erkennen.

Bewahre mich vor der Erwartung, es msste im Leben alles glatt gehen.

Dennis Emmerich Unterschleiheim

Ich bitte nicht um Wunder und Visionen, oh Erhabener (Bhagav), sondern um Kraft fr den Alltag.

Zeige mir, als der im Wissen und Wandel Bewhrte (vijj-caraasampanno), den Weg zur Erkenntnis, da Schwierigkeiten, Niederlagen, Misserfolge und sogenannte Rckschlge eine hilfreiche Zugabe zum Leben sind, durch die ich wachse und reife.

Oh Heilgewordener (araha), lehre mich die Kunst der kleinen Schritte!

Schicke mir, oh Willkommener (sugato) im rechten Augenblick jemanden, der den Mut hat, mir die Wahrheit in Liebe zu sagen und la mich Deine Wahrheit aus meinem Innersten hren.

Ich bitte den Vollkommen Erwachten (samm-sambuddho) um die Kraft fr das rechte Ma, da ich nicht durch das Leben gleite, sondern meinen Tagesablauf bewut wahrnehme, auf Lichtblicke und Hhepunkte achte und Raum finde fr den Augenblick der Stille.

Ich wei, da sich so manche Situationen auch dadurch lsen lassen, da ich nichts tue. Zeige mir, oh Kenner der Welt (loka-vid), wo ich warten soll und gib mir die Geduld und das Vertrauen dazu.

La mich erkennen, da Grbeln nicht weiterhilft, weder ber die Vergangenheit, noch ber die Zukunft.

Du weit, wie sehr wir der Freundschaft bedrfen. Gib, da ich dieser schnsten, schwierigsten, riskantesten und zartesten Aufgabe des Lebens gewachsen bin.

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Buddhasasana

Verleihe mir, oh bertrefflicher Wegfhrer anleitungsbedrftiger Menschen (anuttaro purisa-damma-srathi), die ntige Wachsamkeit, im rechten Augenblick ein Pckchen Gte, mit oder ohne Worte, an der richtigen Stelle abzugeben.

Mach aus mir einen Menschen, der einem Schiff mit Tiefgang gleicht, um auch die zu erreichen, die unten sind. Bewahre mich vor der Angst, ich knnte das Leben versumen.

Gib mir nicht was ich mir wnsche, sondern was ich brauche. Nava Guna Gth Iti pi so Bhagav, araha, sammsambuddho, vijj-caraa-sampanno, sugato, loka-vid, anuttaro purisa-dammasrathi, satth deva-manussna, Buddho, Bhagav ti. Der Lobpreis der neun Eigenschaften Dies, wahrlich, ist der Erhabene, er ist der Heilige, der Vollkommen Erwachte, der im Wissen und Wandel Bewhrte, der Willkommene, der Kenner der Welt, der unvergleichliche Wegfhrer anleitungsbedrftiger Menschen, der Lehrmeister von Gttern und Menschen, der Erwachte, der Erhabene.

Lehre mich, oh Lehrmeister von Gttern und Menschen (satth devamanussna), die Kunst der kleinen Schritte!

La mich, oh Erwachter (buddho), dich jeden Tag in meinem Herzen spren. So knnen auch die anderen Deine Weisheit durch mich erfahren und fhlen.

Das Du, Erhabener (Bhagav), in allem bist, bei jedem kleinen Schritt.

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GESPRCH Verheiratet mit einer Buddhistin


Kai Hofmann Baldham

chen, auch wenn ich mich dabei oft in der Rolle eines nur mig berzeugten aber dafr voll solidarischen Untersttzers wiederfinde. So habe ich mich daran gewhnt, dass unsere Sonntagsspaziergnge kurz unterbrochen werden, weil am Wegesrand tote Tauben, Frsche oder andere Kleintiere liegen, deren Weg in den Reinkarnationskreislauf durch ein Gebet meiner Frau und einen piettvollen Gesichtsausdruck von mir begleitet werden muss.

Ich habe keine Angst vor Spinnen, aber ich mag sie auch nicht besonders. Wenn ich frher eine im Haus entdeckt habe, habe ich sie deshalb meistens kurz und schmerzlos mit dem Hausschuh erschlagen und dann mit einem Kleenex entsorgt. Seit ich mit einer Buddhistin zusammen lebe, die sich vor dem krabbelnden Teil der Schpfung frchtet, ist das nicht mehr so einfach. Um nicht unntig zu tten, habe ich ein altes Marmeladenglas und einen Pinsel aus dem Wasserfarbenkasten meiner Tochter bekommen. Damit muss ich Ungeziefer sanft aus Schlupflchern extrahieren und vorsichtig im Garten entsorgen. Etwas umstndlich, aber letztendlich ein erhebendes Gefhl, wenn man sich als Lebensretter sehen kann, auch wenn ich mich gerade im Winter manchmal frage, wie lange man als Spinne bei minus 8 Grad auf der Terrasse berleben kann und will. Aber fr die groen weltanschaulichen Fragen im Leben ist bei uns der Bhikkhu zustndig, mir geht es mehr darum, meine Frau glcklich zu ma-

Neulich habe ich mich sogar dabei ertappt, einer Katze, die dem morgendlichen Berufsverkehr auf der A8 zum Opfer gefallen ist, mit einem inbrnstigen Omitofo meine Referenz zu erweisen, obwohl meine Frau gar nicht mit im Auto sa.

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Bei manchen buddhistischen Konzepten hat sich mir der praktische Nutzen dagegen ungleich schneller erschlossen, auch wenn ich die gesamte Tragweite nicht wirklich erfasst habe. So habe ich das Loslassen als sehr machtvolles Instrument erkannt, wenn man beispielsweise mit dem Abwasch konfrontiert ist: Zwar wscht sich das Geschirr auch durch Loslassen bedauerlicherweise nicht von alleine, aber ich kann vorher noch entspannt die Sportschau genieen oder zumindest meine Entschuldigungsrhetorik etwas geschmeidiger gestalten. Aber auch einige tiefere Wahrheiten des Buddhismus haben mich nicht ganz unberhrt gelassen. Der Lebensplan eines Buddha-Schlers kommt auch mir bekannt vor: Erst fleiig lernen, um einen guten Job zu bekommen. Dann hart arbeiten, um eine Familie zu grnden und Kinder grozuziehen. Als krnender Abschluss und ultimatives Lebensziel schlielich die Perspektive, nach erfolgreicher Pflichterfllung nicht mehr hart arbeiten zu mssen und sich um sich selbst zu kmmern. Die Gegenfrage Budhhas, warum der Schler denn damit nicht sofort anfange, ist ebenso einfach wahr wie schwer zu beantworten. hnlich sehen dies im brigen die meisten meiner Brokollegen, bei denen ich durch Geschichten wie diese

im Ruf einer Weisheit stehe, der mir zwar schmeichelt, aber meiner tatschlichen spirituellen Reife in keinster Weise entspricht. Denn auch wenn ich mich einer pltzlichen Erleuchtung vermutlich nicht entziehen knnte, so ist mein eigentlicher Herzenswunsch in diesem Leben doch eher weltlich:

Ich mchte einfach ein guter Ehemann sein. Ich bin sicher, daran htte auch Buddha selbst wenig auszusetzen, sofern er sich denn wirklich im Detail fr das weltliche Geschehen im Groraum Mnchen interessiert

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13

Mindfulness is not sati?


Lennart Lopin Florida, USA

Many people, especially those who intensively try to put the Buddhas eightfold path into practice, have thought about the meaning of samm-sati or right mindfulness. In fact, the meaning of this important aspect of Buddhist practice had troubled me for a long time. The problem occurs when we start to look closer at the oldest Buddhist scriptures available, the Pali texts, and investigate the meaning and connotations of this important Buddhist term. Before we begin, however, a very short introductory remark: Why is sati so important with regard to the path to Nibbana? Because it is at the innermost center of the entire Buddhist meditation: Now what is concentration, lady, what is its topic, what are its requisites, and what is its development? Singleness of mind is concentration, friend Visakha; the four foundations of sati are its topic; the four right efforts are its requisites; and any cultivation, development and pursuit of these qualities is its development. (MN 44)

So, what is wrong with translating sati as mindfulness? Well for one, the word does mean something different, as almost any Pali dictionary4 would prove: Sati (f.) [Vedic smti: see etym. under sarati2] memory, recognition, consciousness, D i.180; ii.292; Miln 77 80; intentness of mind, wakefulness of mind, mindfulness, alertness, lucidity of mind, self possession, conscience, self consciousness D i.19; iii.31, 49, 213, 230, 270 sq.; A i.95; Dhs 14; Nd1 7; Tikp 61; VbhA 91; DhsA 121; Miln 37; etc.
The Pali Text Societys Pali-English Dictionary. http://dsal.uchicago.edu/dictionaries/pali
4

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And under sarati we find: Sarati [sm, cp. smti=sati; Dhtp 248 "cint"; Lat memor, memoria=memory; Gr. me/rimna care, ma/rtu witness, martyr; Goth. marnan=E. mourn to care, etc.] to remember D ii.234; Vin i.28; ii.79; J ii.29. . Caus. sreti to remind Vin ii.3 sq., 276; iii.221; srayamna, reminding J i.50; ppr. pass. sriyamna Vin iii.221; w. acc. D ii.234; w. gen. Dh 324; J vi.496; with foll. fut. II. (in t) Vinii.125, 4; iii.44, 9, etc. Caus. II. sarpeti Vin iii.44; Miln 37 (with double acc.), 79. Well, what does remembering ( sati, nominalized from the verb sarati, to remember) or remembrance have to do with mindfulness? There are two ways we can solve this mystery: We can look at the actual meditation technique the Buddha wanted us to perform and which he used the term sati for. From there we look at our experience and chose the best English equivalent which comes to our mind, e.g. Vipassana or noting! The other approach is a linguistic and historic approach. And although in terms of practice, the Vipassana exercises have always made sense to me when compared to the hundreds of suttas in the Samyutta Nikya (i.e. Salyatana Samyutta) I always wondered about the linguistic puzzle: sati seemed to imply something different

than mindfulness. Either the term was not translated precise enough or some background information was missing. Nowadays, when we are interested in practicing mindfulness in a Buddhist context we tend to think of Venerable Mahasi Sayadaw and Ledi Sayadaw and Goenka retreats who brought the Vipassana Meditation from the jungle back into mainstream Theravadan teaching. Whenever you have a chance to study their explanations on how to put the Satipahna-sutta into practice they will talk about labeling or noting sense impressions. In their Pali expositions they use the term sallakheti as did Ven. Buddhaghosa in his Visuddhimagga. (2) But where did the use of the verb sallakkheti (as an explanation for sati) come from? Where did this term come from? While the commentarial literature uses the term sallakheti, meaning to label, when describing the intrinsics of Vipassana practice, certainly the Buddha never himself described it in such a way! He actually never used a word like sallakkheti but sati instead hence the skepticism of so many Westerners towards the Burmese Vipassana movement in the beginning of its rising to popularity. Now, where is the connection, what are we missing? It is literacy!

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15

Why would the Buddha make use of a term of which basically no one at his time had any practical experience with? Writing, though known, was only used for correspondence between kings on a highly official basis, performed by a guild of writers. No one ordinary used writing for making shopping lists even the Brahmins did not dare to entrust anything of religious importance to the fragility of palm leaves in a tropical climate. If you wanted to make a shopping list at the time of the Buddha, if you wanted to catch and note and witness something, you needed to use yes, your memory! The notion of labeling and noting makes sense to us only in an age of literacy. Or to listeners (readers) at the time of Buddhaghosa and probably even before that, approx. since the 1st century before CE when the Buddhist texts were recorded on palm leaves for the first time and literacy and writing started to replace what until then was an extraordinarily and highly cultivated general ability to memorize and to mentally take notes. 2500 years ago the Buddha did not say to his monks: Whenever you see a form, hear a sound, etc. just take a note. Yet he did not say please label the sense impressions (sallakkheti). But he used the proper Pali word for the same activity based on the preva-

lent oral culture and so he asked people to use sati or remembering to take a (mental) note and to mentally witness what had just occurred. Therefore, we could very well render samm-sati in the noble eightfold path as right noting or right witnessing or right attention. Now, based on this observation, the following utterances make even more sense: Yoniso manasikra (Important: not just attention but attention directed towards the source) dihe dihamatta in the seen only the seen, (Udna 1.10) iti pajnti And so, yes, it is about the direct experience, the direct seeing (therefore the additional use of words like vipassati, anadassana, pajnti, paccavekkhati, etc. when describing the meditators activity - all related to the action of seeing while not thinking, reflecting or pondering over it.) Thus the four satipahna, or foundation pillars of sati are used as anchor points for our concentration. A highly concentrated mind, based on a firm grounding and preliminary training in keeping moral precepts, is able to create a mental differential between the point of concentration and the sense objects catching our awareness meaning their rising

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and falling. Thus, sati has a very specific meaning. The Buddha loved clarity, like any other good scientist. Sati or Vipassana meditation can and should therefore never be done without the proper preparation. By now you will wonder how the term sati became so established as mindfulness. Well, mindfulness will be a result of ones practice of noting, especially during the noting and during the seeing. However, the best term translated as mindfulness is in fact a separate Pali word called sampajaa, lit. to know together with so to know while you do something that you do it, as in this exercise: Furthermore, when going forward & returning, he makes himself fully alert; when looking toward & looking away when bending & extending his limbs when carrying his outer cloak, his upper robe & his bowl when eating, drinking, chewing, & savoring when urinating & defecating when walking, standing, sitting, falling asleep, waking up, talking, & remaining silent, he makes himself fully alert. In this way he remains focused internally on the body in & of itself, or focused externally unsustained by anything in the world. This is how a monk remains focused on the body in & of itself. (MN 10) Isnt it intriguing how this part gets always neglected though it seems to be the central part in the whole practice of

the four modes of satipahna - but more on this aspect maybe in another article?

This concept of sampajaa has been moved to the forefront in many essays about Theravadan (sati-) meditation. Even if sati and sampajaa go together, the unclear understanding of sati leads to such strange believes that if you just ate your ice-cream with intense scrutiny and would mindfully indulge into your emotions at depths while eating it, you would actually be carried by towards the goal of enlightenment.

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While this way of observation definitely intensified the sense impressions due to the simple fact of strong concentration, it nevertheless does little to actually aid seeing the rising and falling of those sense impressions. You could say that this ability or wisdom (3), to eventually see the rising and falling, the appearing and disappearing of sense impressions is, the demarcation line between proper practice of sati according to the suttas and indulgence in sensual pleasures with heightened concentration. It is this wisdom of seeing the rising and falling which will make the mind turn away from samsara, realizing its frame-like structure forms the movies compelling story and its grasp on our mind fades, while dispassion and eventually freedom will result, namely bhavanirodho nibbna. Despite the Buddha having explained this rather clearly he also said that there can be something called wrong sati or micch-sati (wrong attention) So, quite contrary to popular belief, mindfulness per se is not inherently wholesome. If it does not go to the root of the experience, it might easily turn into some form of shall we say Tantrism? Definitely a deeper enjoyment of the sensual experience due to strong concentration but without the disillusioning effect of samm-sati a noting which needs to be done in the appropriate

fashion, i.e. in an un-identifying and de-conceptualizing manner. Unfortunately, while eating that icecream and just being with the activity we are carried away by a stream, a wave of sights, tastes, feelings, thoughts, which we do not grasp as such. We immediately identify with them in every moment; object and consciousness establishing reality which we grasp (become) and this is where our thirst (lust) is working - its not the ice creams fault that we suffer! So when people start thinking of what they have to give up in order to overcome their craving right there, right at that moment, right in that very thought alone lies freedom and bondage: Mara binds them to existence, they suffer when the ice melts away, and death smiles, knowing you will not escape or you are smiling back at death, because you know, you already have escaped. Notes: (1) This is how I would reconcile these two positions: The aspect of memory and remembering which Ven. Thanissaro focuses on is the aspect of noting and labeling using a concept like form, form or feeling, feeling to stop the proliferating process of the mind in its tracks. Concentration is needed to not get overwhelmed by overpowering sense impressions and to at least find some temporary footing

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at a meditation object. However, the use of names to unlock the mystery of name-and-form in this Vipassana exercise has as its goal to create an extreme clear vision (nadassana) of what is happening in each moment of the interplay of the five groups of grasping in every moment of being alive. So yes, it is bare attention, but not in an indulging sense but rather in a very controlled and precisely deep way. A method, which will after diligent application, create a direct experience and seeing of the rising and falling of all sense impressions, in other words, the five groups of grasping leading to the peace of Nibbana as described above and other places. (2) Guess where the Burmese rediscovered this practice from while the ZEN Buddhists were fascinated by the Visuddhimaggas (actually the Vimuktimargas) concentration / jhanic / dhyanic / chan / zen aspects, the Burmese were even more impressed by its explanations about how to reach full enlightenment by means of insight meditation. (3) Terms like these show the more active and knowing & knowledge through observation quality of pa or wisdom as it is usually translated moving it much closer to the practice of sati then any form of abstract knowledge: manasikrakusalat pa wisdom from proper attention, yat-

anakusalat pa wisdom from skill with regard to the senses, paccuppannna dhammna vipari-ma anupassane pa udayabbaynupassane a wisdom through an intense repeated seeing of objects in the present moment as they change, following up-seeing of the appearing and disappearing. (4) The two most interesting book on this topic are In the mirror of Memory edited by Janet Gyatso (esp. Collette Cox article), a wonderful compilation of all kinds of Indian sources on the connection between sati and memory and Mindfulness in Early Buddhism by Tse-fu Kuan. While reading them, just dont forget to practice! Mindfulness is chosen here not, as in many cases, to avoid confusion with the psychological function of ti in the sense of memory, but precisely for the opposite reason; that is, to indicate at the outset what this chapter will illustrate: that the contexts for the operation of smrti suggested by the term mindfulness actually encompass the psychological functions of memory as they were understood within Indian Buddhism.

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Early Buddhist Criticism of Ditthi according to Brahmajala Sutta and Atthaka Vagga

the philosophy of Dependent coarising and the practice of the Noble eightfold path, the middle way, which arises above the two extremes of eternalism and annihilationism. In both discourses, we can understand the nature of views, the origin of views, the cessation of views, the path to the cessation of views, and the social implication of views.

Bhikkhu Buddharakkhita Entebbe, Uganda

Introduction In the sixth century, India had many religious teachers who presented a rich diversity of philosophical views each with its own spiritual flavor. The Buddha grouped all those views into sixtytwo categories, according to the Brahmanjala Sutta of the Dgha Nikya. The Buddha himself repeatedly warned against clinging to such views in the Atthaka Vagga of the Suttanipta. The Awakened One arose at a time in the history of India, when most religious people were pre-occupied with certain speculative and metaphysical questions. He considered the majority of such questions regarding various views as meaningless and beyond the scope of the theory of knowledge (epistemology), thus not conducive to attaining the final goal of liberation. Instead, he showed a non-dogmatic approach to reality by propounding

Nature of views The Pli term dihi and Sanskrit drsti are both derived from the root dis or drs respectively which mean to see. The Pali Text Society dictionary defines the meaning of this term as: view, belief, dogma, theory, speculation.5 The Buddha systematically classified the 62 views together and branded them as wrong views since they did not lead to the final goal of liberation. He conveniently classified them into either eternalist or annihilationist views. Sassatavda: idealism or eternalism They believe that body and soul are different, and the latter is metaphysical while the former is physical. The soul survives death and passes on to the next life. In order to free the soul, aus5

Encyclopedia of Buddhism , Vol. 4

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tere practices are necessary, such as self-mortification. The Buddha censured such practices since they just lead to unnecessary pain. Such views are motivated by craving for sensual pleasure and craving for existence, which in turn lead to suffering. The Buddha taught that all conditioned things are impermanent, suffering and non-self. Therefore, there is no soul, which survives death and transmigrates on the next life.

away from final liberation. Sensual pleasures bring little gratification and a lot of suffering in this very life. In fact, the degree and extend of suffering is proportional to the amount of attachment for sensual pleasures.

Sensual desires give little happiness Sensual desires are impermanent. We cannot make our sensual pleasures last forever. That tasty apple pie that you had for your last dinner, where is that taste now? Though we sometimes try to sustain sensual pleasures, they always escape our grasp. In the end, we feel wholly unfulfilled, unsatisfied, disappointed and disillusioned. Unfortunately, sensual desire operates on a false premise that goes against the laws of nature that the Buddha expounded. The annihilationist seems to have ignored this fundamental fact. A craving mind assumes the object of pleasure to be permanent, satisfactory and pleasurable as well as substantial and personal. Yet in reality, as we all know, all conditioned things (like sensual pleasures) are permanently impermanent, unsatisfactory and insubstantial. For that matter, indulging in sensual desires creates friction, disharmony and dissatisfaction in our lives due to our struggle to cling on to those things

Ucchedavda: Materistic or annihilationist They believe in the existence of soul and body as being identical. Though they assigned a different meaning to the soul, yet they believe that it is made out of the four primary elements (earth, fire, water and air) and a product of the body, which again is temporal and impermanent. They practiced self-indulgence in sensual desire, since they believed in a single life. To them, death is the ultimate freedom, and before dying one has to maximize the enjoyment of sensual pleasure and minimize or eliminate the pain that follows upon pleasure. However, the Buddha criticized and devalued the craving for sensual pleasure as base and low in many places in the discourses. He said that they are a mass of suffering and lead

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that are transient. At the outset, when we carefully consider the arising of sensual desires, we notice that it creates a subtle degree of tension and anxiety in our body and mind, which keeps on building up in our life. Owing to the arising of desire, we relentlessly struggle to acquire the objects of our desires. This endless struggle to possess the objects of desire reinforces the giving birth of even more desires. In fact, any time we yield to incoming sensual desires they become stronger than ever before. However, we have to pay a huge price for this endless search for gratification. While accumulating objects to quench our desires, we may suffer from the burden of protecting them. We may even develop great fear and anxiety that we will lose our possessions. So, where is the trade-off for attachment to sensual desires? According to the Guhatthaka Sutta in the Suttanipta, those who are bound to the joys of becoming occasioned by desire, looking forward to (the pleasures of) the future or of the past, hankering after those sensual pleasures of the moment or those (said) before, are indeed, very hard to liberate (from sam-

sara) and verily are not to be liberated by others.6 The Buddha revealed that the tendency to follow these two kinds of views has three psychological aspects namely: dihi-sava (in-flow), dihi-updna (clinging) and dihi-anusaya (underlying tendencies). Burdened with these defilements, some religious teachers asked the Buddha some philosophical questions that were common during that period such as: the nature of the world, the extent of the world, whether the soul and body is the same or different and the destiny of the Tathagata after death. The following ten questions formed a kind of philosophical questionnaire already present in the pre-Buddhist era: Is the world finite? Is the world infinite? Is the world eternal? Is the world not eternal? Is the life principle the same as the body? Is the life principle different from the body? Does the Tathagata exist after death?
Suttanipta, Jayawickrama, N.A; ( 2001); Colombo, Post Graduate Institute of Pali and Buddhist Studies, p. 304.
6

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Does the Tathagata not exist after death? Does the Tathagata both exist and not exist after death? Does the Tathagata neither exist nor not exist after death? Such questions were based according to the Buddha on logical mistakes. Therefore, the Buddha heavily criticized the putting forth of such wrong views and did not answer them on three grounds.

Pragmatic grounds: Some questions were put aside because they do not lead to the Dhamma, holy life, well-being, disenchantment, dispassion, higher understanding, peace, enlightenment and are not connected directly or indirectly to the final goal of liberation. However, some questions such as whether the world is finite or infinite and whether the world is eternal are not connected to the goal of liberation. Also compare the Simile of the arrow: When a man is shot by an arrow and the doctor approaches him to remove that arrow. Should he begin to ask about the clan of the archer, the poison on the arrow and so on, such a man will surely die before all the questions could possibly ever be answered.

Epistemological grounds: Some questions exceeded the limits of theoretical knowledge. To the Buddha, there is a system of knowing such as: clairvoyance, inferential knowing using sense or extra sense perception and abhi. And what happens to the Tathagata after death? An explanation is given in the Simile of fire in the Aggivacchagotta Sutta (M 72): "And suppose someone were to ask you, 'This fire that has gone out in front of you, in which direction from here has it gone? East? West? North? Or south?' Thus asked, how would you reply?"

Psychological grounds: When questions are based on logical confusion, the questioner has already got fixed views and is burdened with wrong views, craving and conceit; the questions are already based on a wrong foundation. Such questions are asked by either people from other religions or ordinary Buddhist followers who have not yet penetrated the truth. According to the Avyakata Sutta in the Samyutta Nikya, Ven. Moggallana revealed that such questions operate in

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the mind of those who harbor personality or identity views. It is wrong to take the six senses as: I, mine, and myself. Likewise the five aggregates of clinging are not Not I, Not mine, and Not myself. For instance, is the self and the body identical? Are the self and the body not identical? The question implies the assumption of there being already a self. Such questions are not asked by Arahants since they have already abandoned all wrong views.

According to the suttas in the Atthaka Vagga, rationalization plays a major role for speculative views to arise. Through intellectual reasoning, some people tend to discover truth using their five senses. The Buddha heavily objected to knowledge being obtained from speculative reasoning and meditative experience both of which are subjected to misinterpretation. All the views dealt with in the Brahmajala Sutta originate from one of two sources: reasoning and meditative experience. 9

Origin of ditthi Speculative views are a part of the phenomenon of dukkha because they represent a misdirected search for security.7 According to the Brahmajala Sutta in the Dgha Nikya, the sixty-two views are based on contact (phassa) of the six sense-bases and their objects. Contact conditions craving which in turn leads to clinging, (to re-becoming, to birth, to aging and death and all manner of suffering).8 But the Tathagata has gone beyond these things, and all the sixty-two wrong views are trapped in his net. Cessation of ditthi Since the cause of wrong views lies in sense perception, the understanding and abandoning of the very sense perception is crucial in putting an end to wrong view. According to the Guhatthaka Sutta, the sage having comprehended sensory perception and crossed flood is not sullied by ( the substrata of) grasping. Faring in diligence with the dart pulled out, he longs for neither this world nor the next.10

Bhikkhu Bodhi, 1978

The All-Embracing Net of Views; Bhikkhu Bodhi (2007); BPS, p. 9 8 Digha Nikaya, A Translation of the Digha Nikaya; Walshe, Maurice (1987, 1995); Boston, Wisdom Publications, p. 55
7

10

Suttanipata , Jayawickrama, N.A; ( 2001); Colombo, Post Graduate Institute of Pali and Buddhist Studies, p. 306

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Furthermore, according to the Potthapada Sutta (DN 9), jhanic meditation can gradually reduce sa (perception) to subtler degrees until it ceases altogether. In addition, nonclinging to any dogmatic view through abandoning the three floods namely, conceit, craving and wrong view, leads to the cessation of all views. An enlightened person who has eradicated all fetters is free from any kind of views.

path) which avoids the two extremes of views such as the view that everything is due to one cause or predetermined by fatalism (Niyativda) and the view that there is no cause for things to happen, also known as fortuitous origination. According to the Samyutta Nikya, the Buddha said, When this is, that is; when this is not, that is not; with the arising of this, that arises, and with the ceasing of this, that ceases. Through the cessation of the six sense bases, contact ceases; through the cessation contact, feeling ceases. Through the cessation of feeling, craving ceases; through the cessation of craving, clinging ceases; through the cessation of clinging, re-becoming ceases; through the cessation of rebecoming, birth ceases; through the cessation birth, all manner of suffering (ageing, and death, sorrow and lamentation, pain and grief) ceases. This is the way to the cessation of ditthi. Basically, the teaching on Dependent origination undermines the metaphysical views because it has these features: nothing arises accidently; nothing arises with a single cause; results are not induced by single causes; the plurality of causes produces the plurality of results.

The path to the eradication of ditthi When a monk understands feelings as they really are, the arising and passing away of the six sense bases, their attraction and peril, and the deliverance from them, he knows that which goes beyond all these views.11

The Way to eradicate craving and ignorance Since speculative views are intimately related to suffering, the best way to get rid of them is follow the Noble eightfold path that leads to vision, peace, knowledge, enlightenment, and Nibbna. 12 The Buddha taught the philosophy of Dependent co-arising and the practice of the Noble eightfold path (middle
Digha Nikaya, A Translation of the Digha Nikaya, Walshe, Maurice (1987, 1995) , Boston, Wisdom Publications. 12 Bhikkhu Bodhi.
11

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Social implication of ditthi Wrong views have a great impact on an individual harboring them as well as the society at large. Apart from obstructing human spiritual progress on the path of liberation by prolonging the round of birth and death, clinging on wrong views can leads to endless conflicts and disputes in society. According to the Nidna Sutta and Madhupindika Sutta, the Buddha clearly mentioned that wrong views are the major cause of conflicts and fights, Kings quarrel with kings, nobles quarrel with nobles, mothers quarrel with daughters, fathers quarrel with sons, brothers quarrel with sisters, sisters quarrel with brothers, and friends quarrel with friends. And here in their quarrels, brawls, and disputes they attack each other with fists, clods, sticks, or knives, whereby they incur death or deadly suffering...13 Also, the Pasra Sutta in the Atthaka Vagga mentions that peoples attachment to views leads to speaking of excellence of ones views and another disparate other as individual truth. Each one clings to a different opinion, thus leading to quarrels with the aim of receiving praise. Some are engaged in controversial talks amidst a gathering of people. Some are vanquished or

defeated, and thus become extremely depressed.

Conclusion: Having explored the nature, origin, end, the path to the end of views, it becomes abundantly clear that holding on wrong views does not only lead to ones suffering but has social implications such as quarrels and wars. By understanding the doctrine of dependent origination, we can understand the nature of views and their causes such as craving and ignorance. When we abandon the causes of wrong views, we reach the cessation of wrong views and experience Nibbna here and now.

13

Digha Nikaya, I.

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Buddhism in Malaysia
K. Don Premaseri Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

East Asia to date. Only 10 % percent of the 90 identified archaeological sites in Lembah Bujanghas been excavated so far, fuelling fresh debate to the actual site of the great Indian Buddhist Emperor Asokas Dhamma missionary to Suvarnabhumi (the Land of Gold).

The origin of Buddhism in Malaysia can be attributed to the Spice trade routes that existed before the Common Era, which passed through the straits between Malaysia and Sumatra. Trade was between Eastern points in Asia/Africa and China in the East. The land route through central Asia from China to India is known as the Silk route. Both the Silk and Spice routes are complementary and have seen emergence of trade gateways at various land and maritime points for exchange of goods. The earliest Buddhist influence in Malaysia has long been attributed to Indian influence and also the Malay kingdom of Sri Vijaya which was based in Indonesia. The Sri Vijaya Kingdom was responsible for the building of the mammoth Borobodur complex in Java, Indonesia. Lembah Bujang, Kedah in northern Malaysia bears testimony to this influence with archaeological findings of Buddhist sculptures and images up to the 5th Century AD and also Buddhist inscriptions. However the announcement in 2011 by the Malaysian government of archaeological findings on what looks like the base of a pagoda dating back to the 1st Century AD is unprecedented, as this finding predates all archaeological sites in South

Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, Sumatra, Malaysia and Cambodia are possibly Suvarnabhumi, one of the 9 destinations to where emissaries were sent by the court of the great Indian Emperor Asoka in the 3rd Century BC carrying the message of the Buddha. The emissaries to Suvarnabhumi were the Venerables Sona and Uttara, and interestingly some suggested coupling both the names to get SonaUttara and suggested similarities to the name of the Indonesian island of Sumatra. Thambapani (now known as Sri Lanka) has an unbroken link to Emperor Asoka and thus the Buddha, by their well recorded historical trails of

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one such emissary, i.e. Emperor Asokas son, Arahant Mahinda. Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia especially have often claimed to be Suvarnabhumi, to attain a direct historical link and thus legitimacy to an unbroken lineage to the Buddha. Malaysia or Lembah Bujang and Sumatra has not laid any such claims being currently Islamic but this recent archaeological discovery truly puts Lembah Bujang well ahead of even Thailand, Myanmar or Cambodia as the possible Suvarnabhumi. Lembah Bujang being the first land mass after days of sea voyage of traders from India towards China is the natural port of embarkation, rest, supplies, replenishment, before the Indian traders continued the voyage to China. It is also the possible gateway (hub) of goods exchange for the Indians with the Chinese traders. Indian villages have been set up in Lembah Bujang and naturally with it, Indian culture and religions as the archaeological findings have shown up. These beginning Buddhist influence in northern Malaysia eventually evolved into a mixed form of Buddhism and Hinduism and finally to Islam which was wholly embraced by the rulers and the people.

were close. There were even legends of a Chinese princess marrying the ruler of the kingdom of Melaka and converting to Islam. Chinese and Indian settlements were built in the kingdom for the traders, each led by a certain leader of their ethnic group. These Indian and Chinese communities still exist in Malaysia today having a distinctive locally evolved culture known as Chitti (Indian) and Peranakan (Chinese). There is however no trace of a Buddhist temple built in Malaysia in the period of the kingdom of Melaka from 1400 to 1511, when it eventually fell to the Portugese conquest. It is also not known if there were Buddhist temples but these temples were destroyed by the Portugese who were known for their disdain of other religions, as historically recorded of their wanton destruction of Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka (then known as Ceylon) and the forced conversion of the local populace. The oldest Buddhist temple in Malaysia is traced to be the Cheng Hoon Teng temple in Melaka, dedicated to the Goddess of Mercy, built in 1645, about 134 years after the fall of the kingdom of Melaka, during the Dutch occupation of Malaysia. This Cheng Hoon Teng temple was also used to settle disputes within the Chinese community and has also dedicated shrines within the temple to other deities. It has become a major tourist site today. The Dutch colonists were not as overzealous in religious conversion as their Portugese counterparts, and in Sri Lankas case were even welcomed as liberators.

The second wave The next wave of Buddhism came to Malaysia possibly through the Chinese who settled in the kingdom of Melaka in central Malaysia. Trade and relationship between China and Melaka

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Third wave The opening up of Malaysia geographically by the British colonists on the economic frontiers in the 19th century in areas of tin mining and rubber planting did not appeal to the local Malay population who were keen in fishing and farming. The struggle for labor force resulted in active promotion of economic migrants and also traders into Malaysia from China, India and Ceylon (Sri Lanka). Most of the Chinese engaged in commerce and tin mining while the Indians and Ceylonese were absorbed into the civil service and rubber estates. A famous Chinese temple set up in this period in 1893 was the Kek Lok Si in Penang, reputedly the largest Chinese Buddhist temple in South East Asia adorning a hill with a huge pagoda, mammoth image of Kwan Yin and dotted with shrines dedicated to various guardian deities. The Chinese continued to build more temples throughout Malaysia. Many were a mixture of Taoist temples rather than Buddhist temples but they were all regarded as Chinese temples. Another huge temple set up was the Kwan Inn Teng in Penang in the 1800s. Even the Malaysian Buddhist Association which is an umbrella body of all these Chinese temples consists of Buddhist and Taoist temples. In the 1990s however, there was increasing awareness of the distinction between Taoism and Buddhism. The national census and national identity cards registered religious affiliation. A Federation of Taoist Associations Malaysia has also been established in the

1990s to create a clear identity for Taoism as a religion in Malaysia.

Mahayana Buddhism The activities of the Mahayana group has been limited to rites and rituals only but took great strides forward in the area of Dhammaduta, socio-welfare and meditation with the arrival of monastics from China/Taiwan who have been a dynamic force such as Venerables Keng An, Chuk Mor , Seet Kim Beng, etc. The emergence of energetic and resourceful local monks such as Venerables Chi Chern, Boon Kheng, Wei Wu, etc. too has been a great catalyst for the growth of Mahayana Buddhism in Malaysia especially among the youths. Strong associations committed to Dhammaduta work were formed. Among them were the Malaysian Buddhist Association with branches throughout the country, Penang Buddhist Association, the Triple Wisdom Hall, Than Siang Temple, the Taiping Buddhist Society, Kuan Imm Teng in Selangor, Hoeh Beng temple, Wisma Buddhist, Tham Wah Wan, etc. Today the Mahayana group forms the largest group of Buddhists, Buddhist youths and monastics in Malaysia, largely inspired by dynamic masters from institutions in Taiwan such as Foguang Shan, Tzu Chi, Dharma Drum Mountain, Hai Tao Foundation, Amitofo Care Center, etc. The medium of communication and instruction in most Mahayana temples is predominantly Mandarin. The Young Buddhist

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Association of Malaysia which was formed in 1971 is an umbrella Buddhist youth organization with over 250 Buddhist youth societies of which over 80% are Mahayana, which gives a good indication on the percentage breakdown of Buddhism into Mahayana and Theravada associations, temples and adherents in Malaysia. Most Buddhists who follow the Mahayana tradition have undergone primary schooling in Mandarin as medium of instruction while Theravada tradition has mainly those schooled in English or Malay as medium of instruction. The Malaysian Buddhist Association operates a monastic training center in Penang called the Malaysian Buddhist institute while the Foguang Shan operates one center in Selangor called the Dong Zhen. Ven. Wei Wu also operates a Buddhist university in Southern Thailand and an institute in Penang. There is also a Buddhist Free School, i.e. Phor Tay operated by the Mahayana group. These institutes illustrate the extant of strength, commitment and sustainability of the Mahayana tradition in Malaysia. There are about 700 Buddhist monastics in Malaysia, mainly from the Mahayana tradition. Tzu Chi Foundation is the foremost Buddhist welfare group in Malaysia and the world, having 10 million members and chapters worldwide.

set up by a Burmese philanthropist lady on land purchased by her. The temple is today a major tourist site in Penang, and has a meditation center and Sunday School too. Monastic teachers from Myanmar have inspired locals into meditation mainly in the Vipassanadhura using the Mahasi method or the Pa-Auk method. The most popular method remains the Mahasi method, which was popularized by a Thai monk, Ven. Phra Khru Dhammabanchanvud at the Malaysian Buddhist Meditation Center, Penang. Several meditation centers have sprung up inspired by this tradition with resident Burmese monks and several English speaking Theravada centers too have Burmese resident monks. Several locals have taken to the robes, inspired by the Mahasi tradition. The Goenka method of meditation too is popular in Malaysia with regular retreats held with huge participation from locals and foreigners. Of late several new Burmese Buddhist centers have been set up mainly catering to the needs of immigrant Burmese workforce in Malaysia. There are about 20 monastics from Myanmar currently in Malaysia. Among the foremost contributors of Burmese monks is Ven. Pannavamsa from Penang. The first Thai Buddhist temple in Malaysia was built in 1845 on land donated by the British Government to the Thai people in the interest of commerce. This Buddhist temple, the Wat Chaiyamangalaram in Penang houses the worlds third largest reclining Buddha image and is a major tourist site. There are about 90 larger Thai

Theravada Buddhism On the Theravada side, the first Burmese Buddhist temple in Malaysia was built in 1803, i.e. the Dhammikarama Buddhist temple in Penang which was

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temples and an unknown number of smaller Thai shrines in Malaysia catering mainly to the Malaysian Thai community who number about 80,000 people and locals seeking blessings. The larger Thai temples are located mainly in Kedah (48 temples), Kelantan (24 temples) and Perak (8 temples), the northern states bordering Thailand. This is due to the influence of Siam when the states of Perlis, Kedah, Kelantan, Trengganu were ruled by the Kingdom of Siam. The worlds largest reclining Buddha image is sited at a Thai temple in Tumpat, at the northern state of Kelantan bordering Thailand. There are about 150 local Thai and foreign Thai monks in Malaysia and they have an umbrella body to coordinate matters such as Kathina with the headquarters being the Wat Chetawan in Petaling Jaya in central Malaysia. The Chief Buddhist monk of Kelantan is known as Sangharaja and continues to be appointed by the ruler (Sultan) of Kelantan, a tradition they inherited when the state was a protectorate of the Kingdom of Siam (Thailand). There is keen interest in the Ajahn Chah books with thousands of copies published of various titles published in English and the annual Ajahn Chah Remembrance week is also commemorated in Malaysia on a large scale in the last few years. Among the biggest contributors of Thai monastics are Ven Chao Khun Silananda, Ven Phra Khru Dhammabanchanvud and Ven Chamriang. The Sri Lankans built their first temple, i.e. Taiping BodiLangkaram in 1885 in Perak followed by the Brickfields Bud-

dhist Temple (1894) - now known as Buddhist Maha Vihara Brickfields, Sri Lanka Buddhist Temple Sentul (1917) and the Mahindarama Buddhist Temple Penang (1918). Currently only the Buddhist Maha Vihara and the Sri Lanka Buddhist Temple is run by Committees made up of Sinhala Buddhists while the other two temples have Sri Lankan resident monks but the Committee is made up of Chinese Buddhists. SeveraI other centers too have resident Sri Lankan monks, who in total number about 30 monks in Malaysia. In comparison to the Thai and Burmese monastics, the Sri Lankan monastics have played a bigger role in the field of Dhammaduta and sociowelfare among Malaysian Buddhists. Among the dynamic Sri Lankan monks of the past and present are Ven. K. Gunaratana, Ven. K Sri Dhammananda, Ven. Ananda Mangala, Ven. H. Gunaratana, Ven. P. Pemaratana, Ven K Sri Pemaloka, Ven. K Sri Dhammaratana, Ven. B. Sri Saranankara and Ven. I. Indraratana. They could be credited for the resurgence of Buddhism among the English educated Chinese Buddhists and youths in Malaysia through Dhamma talks, discussions, free publications, Sunday Schools, Adult Dhamma classes, sociowelfare work, etc. Tiratana Welfare Society and Maha Karuna Foundation are two prominent welfare societies inspired by Sri Lankan monks. The local Chinese, Thai and Sinhalese Theravada monastics are limited in number; however they have indeed set landmarks and milestones in the an-

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nals of Malaysian Buddhism in their own right. There are about 18 forest Buddhist monasteries in Malaysia. Among the famous local Chinese monks who have set up forest meditation centers and highly venerated are Ven. Aggacitta (Sasanarakkha), Ven. Dhammavuddho (Vihara Buddha Gotami), Ven. Sakaro (Balik Pulau Meditation Center), Ven. Suvanno (Lunas Meditation Center), Ven. M. Mahinda (Alokaramaya), Ven. Sujivo (Santhisukkharama), etc. Ven. Javana shines among the local Thai monastics and is a well-known travelling meditation teacher, and not having a permanent abode. Ven. Sumana Siri shines among the local Sinhala monastics having excelled scholastically and also in the field of inter-faith harmony though he is currently residing in Europe.

nization of hundreds of participants to the beat of music.

Vajrayana Buddhism The Vajrayana group could be said the fastest growing group among the Malaysian Buddhists. It has gained great impetus with the visit of the Venerable Gwalya Karmapa in 1980, H.H. Dalai Lama in 1981, Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 1996, etc. They have set up centers in various places of the country and formed a Federation called the Vajrayana Buddhist Council of Malaysia consisting of 20 founding societies of the 4 Tibetan traditions. Their ability to organize large scale prayer sessions attracting thousands of people far exceeding Mahayana and Theravada groups despite being new is a new phenomenon in the Malaysian Buddhism landscape. Kechara Soup Kitchen is the most prominent socio-welfare group among the Vajrayana tradition, feeding the homeless selflessly.

Japanese Buddhism The Japanese Buddhism influence in Malaysia is largely through the Nichiren Soshu with two centers and Soko Gokai Malaysia who have been set up in many towns throughout Malaysia. They have strong fellowship among their followers but do not have contact with other Buddhist groups within Malaysia. They are always prominent in the media through their large scale rhythmic gymnastic activities including performances for National Day Celebrations or the South East Asian biannual Games which could hold the audience in awe by the rhythmic beats and effortless synchro-

Moving Forward While the national census show Buddhists to form 19% of the population of Malaysias 28 million people, they are merely Buddhists in name, many of whom do not regularly go to a Buddhist temple or center to learn the Dhamma, except perhaps going once a year to the temple for Wesak or when a lifecycle event dictates it, such as birth, death, marriage, sickness, blessings for prosperity, etc. Even these free flow devotees walking through the gates of a temple are not tapped through effec-

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tive outreach, let alone having good Dhamma books or CDs as food for the inquisitive or non-committed mind. Current efforts to educate Buddhists are simply an iota compared to Christian and Islamic missionary efforts and there is continuous drop of the Buddhist population due to conversions.

A Buddhist holiday in Malaysia Wesak is a national holiday. Though Malaysia gained independence in 1957 and Wesak was a holiday in some states of Malaysia prior to independence, it was declared a holiday only in 1962. The struggle to get it declared a holiday has indeed been historical with a massive public signature campaign and lobbying by the Buddhist leaders, the Chinese community and the Buddhist temples. Buddhists need to rise up to the occasion to be foresighted and focus on the field of Dhammaduta taking leave from their forefathers struggle to make Wesak a national holiday, and to have a strong rebirth of Buddhism in Malaysia.

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KC Lim

14 1516

17
1819
17

14

179MN 78 Samanamandika Sutta. 15 1 860 63 MN 81 Ghatikara Sutta67 MN 83Makhadeva Sutta 16 102MN 19 Dvedhavitakka Sutta172 214 MN 88 Bahitika Sutta

133 MN 56 Upali Sutta


18

75 MN 106 Anenjasappaya Sutta 19 79 MN 127 Anuruddha Sutta

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20

Righteous Heart

(English translation)

KC Lim Singapur


21

When I was a little boy, my familys favorite pastime was to watch Hong Kong TV dramas series, usually set in an earlier period such as the Tang or Qing Dynasty. In those dramas, the scenes depicting the judicial court usually had the magistrate sitting in the center of the courtroom, with a signage hung over his seat: . Translated character by character, it is Righteous, Big, Bright, and Clear. Presumably, these words represented the emperors expectations that his officials should handle any court cases in a fair, righteous, and transparent manner. At that time, I didnt find much meaning in those words. But as I grow older, and after learning more, I realize that they embedded much more meanings than I original thought. The four characters, (righteous) (big) (bright) (clear). Each has a unique meaning. Each is a description of our heart. What is righteous? The Buddha said

20 21

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35

upright-quality ascetics22. Righteous means to be upright and straight. The reverse is being crooked and bent. It is similar to planting a tree, we can plant it upright, or we can plant it crooked. If the heart faces the right direction, it is called righteous. If the heart faces the wrong direction, it is called crooked. The right direction is to benefit oneself, to benefit others, to benefit all 23 ; not to hurt oneself, not to hurt others, not to hurt all24. A righteous heart is inseparable from straightness. Being straight means the heart is not bent or deformed, and where stating one means one, stating two means two. When what one speaks is a true reflection of what one thinks in his mind, this is also called honesty. A tree could be planted straight and upright initially, but if the trunk gradually grows to become bent, then it will not be able to grow at the right direction. A man with bent heart speaks differently from what his mind really thinks, and to such people, the Buddha does not preach nor teach them Dharma. This is because their heart is not righteous, and therefore they cannot accept the Dharma. This is why when the Buddha speaks to some ascetics of a different tradition, someMadhyama Agama (MA)#179equivalent to Majjhima Nikaya (MN)#78 23 MA#63equiv. MN#81MA#67equiv. MN#83
22

times he will ask them whether they can speak in a way that if something is true, answer it as true, and if it is untrue, answer it as untrue25. This is to first set their heart in an upright and honest state so that Dharma can be accepted. We should also constantly observe and teach our mind to face the world in an upright and honest stance. What is big? A heart can be big or small. It is just like a box of kids toys, some toys are big, some are small, and each possesses a different shape. A small heart can fall into the thoughts of greed, anger, and ignorance easily. A big heart will not fall as easily into greed, anger, and ignorance. This is because when the heart is big, the containers of greed, anger, and ignorance cannot absorb this heart, and so the heart does not generate such evil thoughts. How big can a big heart be26? The Buddha said big heart, limitless heart27. A big heart can embrace a tree, two trees, a forest, two forests, a country, two countries, and more. A limitless heart means that what the heart embraces cannot be measured. The types of heart that can embrace limitless beings are known as Compassion, Sympathy, Joy, and Equanimity (alternatively translated as Protective).
25

MA#133: (Translated and quote) The Buddha said: Layperson, I wish to discuss this with you. If you stay in the truth, answer the truth. equiv. MN#56
26 27

MA#102, equiv. MN#19MA#214 equiv. MN#88


24

MA#75, equiv. MN#106 MA#79, equiv. MN#127

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What is bright? A heart can be bright and shiny, or it can be dark and dim. When a heart is covered by greed, anger, sleep, restlessness, and doubt, it is not a bright heart. So when is a heart considered to be bright? When unkind classes of factors such as greed and anger do not affect the heart. Therefore, when a man is performing lustrous deeds, his heart is dark and dim. Because it is dark and dim, it naturally trends towards stupidity and ignorance, and naturally is unable to view the Dharma as Dharma. The Buddha said repeatedly that we must be devoid of lust, devoid of evil and unkind thoughts and acts, just so that our heart can get rid of darkness and ignorance. This is also why the Buddha teaches the Bhikkhus that when they sleep, they should bind their mind to bright perceptions28. What is clear? A heart can be clear, or it can be turbid. If it is transparent as a diamond, this is considered clear. The reverse is turbid. When the heart is affected by filth or dirt, or unkind factors, it becomes turbid. Filth refers to anger, dirt refers to lusts, unkind factors refer to various types of taints that are agonizing. Therefore, when the heart is commanded by anger, lust, or arrogance, it is naturally in a state of high turbidity, and it naturally be28

comes murky, and it naturally will not be able to understand the true Dharma. A murky heart is equivalent to ignorance. How do we clear this heart? To make the heart clear, we should first let it be still. When the heart is still, it naturally becomes clear, just like after the muddy particles in a pond settled down, the water becomes clear. This is why in Abhidhamma Citta, it was said: The first step, we should start from the bodys six internal receptors, and bind the heart there, so that it settles down.29 Therefore, we should constantly practice the righteous, big, bright, and clear heart. Before we do something, before we say something, we should reflect: is what we are about to do righteoushearted, big-hearted, bright-hearted, and clear-hearted? If it is, we can do it. If it is not, we refrain from doing it. When we cultivate and hold a righteous, big, bright, and clear heart, we will naturally be born in a kind world. And when the right reasons and instances occur, we will naturally be able to perceive the Dharma.

29

MA#33

Dharmarestin, Abhidharmahrdaya[sastra], A Pi Tan Xin Lun, Book II Part IV. Translated by Samghadeva and Hui Yuan

Sommer 2556 (2013)

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BUCHREZENSIONEN

Samaneri Agganyani Bruckmhl

Fhrer durch den AbhidhammaPitaka von Nyanatiloka Eine bersicht ber die philosophischen Sammlungen des buddhistischen PaIi-Kanon nebst einem Essay zum Paticca-Samuppada

(Theravada-) Buddhisten bekennen sich und sprechen vom Tipitaka, dem Dreikorb oder den drei Sammlungen des Palikanons. Aber, Hand aufs Herz, wer kennt schon den AbhidhammaPitaka? Zu Unrecht als Scholastik abgewertet, stellt er systematisch, abstrakt und vollstndig das Erfahrungsund Einsichtswissen des Buddha dar, das auch ein ernsthaft Meditierender nachvollziehen und genauso praktizieren, sehen und erleben kann. Aber das Mammutwerk der sieben Abhidhamma-Pitaka Bcher, etwa 6000 Seiten im Original, liest sich und erschliet sich einem schwer - erfreulich also ein knapper Fhrer fr einen guten berblick ber die Quintessenz der einzelnen Werke, der vielleicht auch den ein oder anderen zur weiteren Beschftigung und Praxis inspiriert. Beim vorliegenden Werk handelt es sich um eine Rckbersetzung von Nyanatilokas weltweit bekanntem "Guide through the AbhidhammaPitaka" (Erstauflage 1938) ins Deutsche von Dr. Julian Braun, der versucht hat, mglichst nahe an der englischen Vorlage zu bleiben und die auch sonst von Nyanatiloka gebrauchten deutschen Begriffe zu verwenden. So glaubt man denn beim Lesen fast schon, den lngst verstorben Ehrwrdigen Nyanatiloka vor sich zu sehen, den ersten deutschen Mnch und einem groartigen Abhidhamma-Kenner.

Michael Zeh Verlag 2013, http://www.zeh-verlag.de Hardcover, 178 Seiten, 39,90 ISBN 978-3-937972-21-3

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Patticca-Sammupada) sich nichts gendert. Oliver Menner Zolling

vermittelt,

hat

Klassische und packende Einfhrung

Plus / Minus: Sehr Kenntnisreich und fundiert. Umfangreicher Anhang mit wichtigen Original-Texten (Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta, Satipatthana Sutta, Auszge aus dem Dhammapada u. a. mehr). Leicht veralteter LiteraturIndex, eher knappes Glossar von PaliBegriffen Fazit: Walpolas Belesenheit, seine ernsthafte und entspannte Geisteshaltung halten einen das ganze Buch hindurch an der "kurzen Leine". Ein echter "Spellbinder".

Ein echter Klassiker! Walpola Rahulas Buch wird auch heute noch von vielen als eine der besten Einfhrungen in den (Pali-)Buddhismus angesehen. Walpola Rahula (1907-1997), Mnch, Gelehrter und Schriftsteller aus Sri Lanka gilt als einer der TopIntellektuellen nicht nur des Buddhismus, sondern des 20. Jahrhunderts berhaupt (er war z.B. der erste stliche Mnch mit Professur im Westen, lehrte u. a. Geschichte und Religionswissenschaft). Fr eine verstndliche und umfassende Erst-Einfhrung (die man aber auch nach Jahren des Studiums immer wieder gewinnbringend zur Hand nehmen kann), ist das Buch erste Wahl. Natrlich merkt man manchen Passagen in Stil und einigen Ausfhrungen die Entstehung in den spten 50er Jahren mittlerweile an (z.B. bei gelegentlichen Ausflgen in weltpolitische Bezge), aber an der Aktualitt des Dhamma einerseits sowie an der geistigen Frische des Bhante und der Leichtigkeit, mit der er selbst komplexe Zusammenhnge der Lehre (Anatta,

Rahula Walpola: Was der Buddha lehrt - What the Buddha taught z.B., Origo Verlag, Bern, 1997 - in Deutschland leider vergriffen aber die englische Ausgabe von Grove Press N.Y., 1974, gibt es noch recht gnstig z.B. via www.amazon.de neu, als eBook/Kindle-edition oder dort auch 2nd Hand. Und natrlich auch in der Bibliothek des Buddhistischen Klosters Bodhi Vihara, Fischergasse 11 in Freising.

Sommer 2556 (2013)

39

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Buddhist Association of Dhamma Followers in Germany

www.dhamma.de info@dhamma.de