Daily Readings

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Doubt

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English

An uncertainty of mind can produce only a lack of understanding. But, doubt must not be confused with a withholding of judgement, of consent and support, which is the attitude of an open mind.

The Five Precepts of Buddhism

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It must be asserted that the Pancha Sila (Five Precepts) do not necessarily make a person a Buddhist, but to be a real Buddhist, one has to observe the five precepts. This poses the question, "who is a Buddhist?" The simplest answer is, a Buddhist is one who takes refuge in the "Triple Gem" (Tissrana), namely the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha.

Kamma

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This aspect of the Dhamma namely Kamma as one's refuge is emphasized in several places in the SuttaPitaka. A notable instance and an oft-quoted passge occurs in the AnguttraNikaya,PanchakaNipata-pp. 87 and 88. "My Kamma is my possession. My Kamma is my inheritance. My Kamma is the womb that bears me. My Kamma is the race to which I am skin. My Kamma is my refuge."

Dhamma is a way of life

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Religion, as is ordinarily understood, binds one to such untenable beliefs as a Supreme Creator, immortal soul, eternal heavens and hells. The Buddha Dhamma is free from such beliefs, dogmas, superstitions, and speculative theories. Hence, it cannot strictly be called a religion. The Dhamma is essentially the teaching of cause and effect (Hetuphalavada).

Consciousness

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The end of a long process of mental activity, not long perhaps as chronological time is involved, but long in a line of experiences and consequences, there comes consciousness.

It begins, if one may speak of a beginning anywhere at all, with a physical contact (phassa) with one of the six senses of perception (salayatana). This produces a sensation (vedana) which is the experiencing of a challenge. It is at this stage that the process tends to become mental, when the sensation is perceived (sanna).

Bodhisattva Ideal

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He who aspires to attain Samma Smabuddhahood is called a Bodhisattva. This Bodhisattva ideal is the most refined and the most beautiful that is ever presented to this ego-centric world, for what is nobler than a life of service and purity.

Dhamma as medicine

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In the Middle Length sayings of Gotama Buddha, it has been recorded:
"The Buddha is like a physician in that He is able to heal sickness of the defilements. The dhamma is like a rightly applied medicine, and the Sangha with the defilements cured, are like people restored to health by the medicine."

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