Tag Archives: Gautama Buddha

A Touching Story…

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A Touching Story…

Dogen Zenji Says…

“Life and death are of supreme importance. Time swiftly passes by and opportunity is lost. Each of us should strive to awaken. Awaken. Take heed, do not squander your life.”

I have just finished watching “The Buddha: The Story of Siddhartha” on Netflix and it was such a touching documentary of the Buddha’s life and journey from having everything a person could offer, to throwing it all away and going on a journey to find answers to all of the many questions he had, to suffering. Finally coming to the realization that all the knowledge he needed was already deep within him. I was going to go to the Dharma Center last night, but I changed my mind and am continuing on with my reading. I ordered the “Tao Te Ching” for my Kindle today. I have decided that I can do this journey on my own. Everything I saw on the documentary today confirmed what I already know, Be Your Own Light! With that I leave you with the Rolling Stones….

 

All Thee Above and Then Some!

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All Thee Above and Then Some!

I don’t know what I did to deserve such an auspicious honor but All Thee Above was so sweet and posted a blog about me on Here is Recommended Sites Tuesday. I appreciate the kudos very much! Thank you so much my friend. I am now the proud owner of two blogs, this one of course and my new one at EZ Street a Day in the Life. My Buddha Blog is a personal journey that started on New Year’s Eve of 2011 and will hit it’s one year evolution on 12-31-2012. It’s amazing how much one can go through in one year on the search for spiritual growth. My EZ Street Blog is all about my journey as a musician and all that is involved with the life of a professional musician. I will be discussing the daily joys and frustrations that go along with being in the entertainment field. I am very curious to see the evolution one year from now. I can tell you the path has been a long one and it won’t stop until I am on my death bed. So for those of you who follow my blogs, thanks for coming along for the ride. I hope I have made it enjoyable and entertaining, even when I’m bitching…. :D Much love and peace, Jaz

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A Common Bond

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A Common Bond

“Our Similarities bring us to a common ground; Our Differences allow us to be fascinated by each other.” Tom Robbins

You might be in the right place when….You have an addiction and everyone there does too. You are in a room chalk full of complete strangers, yet the love and support is there for you to take and to give. You have a chance to untimely change your life through the kindness of others that share a similar bond with you. You have a place to go almost every night to receive love and support, you can listen to the trials and tribulations of others so similar to your own, and  every single person here shares the exact same problem as you do. Their road map to getting to these hollowed rooms may have been different, but the perils and dangers are the same. Each road that each person traveled may have been different, but inevitably led to a choice of two paths, life or death. I only recently began going to meetings, but I know something now that I didn’t know then. In my past failures in my trials with sobriety I failed because I neglected to set up a solid support system of people like myself, struggle like myself and are needing support to make it through another 24 like myself. Thank Buddha I finally figured it out. I think I’m home.

I Just Have to Get This Off My Chest

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I Just Have to Get This Off My Chest

Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting. Emmet Fox

I really have to get this off my chest because it has been bothering me. However, I need to do this in the most Buddhist fashion I can and that isn’t going to be easy because frankly I am really irked at this person. I have been going to meetings recently to help me maintain my sobriety. There are great, loving people there and as of yet I have not met anyone negative, that is until Saturday. The meeting was a good one and one person even received his award for 14 years of sobriety. We closed the meeting and without my knowing it this person who had received the award made a point of saying to me, “I remember you when you were living on Chicago Street, you were trying to get sober then, too.” Now I have to point out here that I haven’t lived on Chicago street for over 8 years, so it just goes to show how long my battle has been. This person who pointed this out to me isn’t a regular at our meetings, in fact I have never seen him there before. I think he simply showed up at our meeting because it was his day to receive his award and there were no other meetings on that day.  I didn’t recognize him and put it together who he was until after we had already left. He was the head of a group I used to attend about 9 years ago and I haven’t seen him again until Saturday. The fact is I didn’t like him then, and I surely don’t like him now, Buddha forgive me, but I abhor him and his critical, judgmental self. What right has he to judge me! I am so incredibly happy for him that he has managed to maintain 14 years of sobriety, Good for him. We can’t all be like him, in recovery, self-righteous and supercilious. Some of us have to fall and scrape our knees many many times before we get it. Was it really necessary for Mr. High-and-Mighty, Mr. I am so much better than you, Mr. Look at my award, to point out another person’s failure who is struggling with their sobriety. In a way I hope I never see the MF again, but at the same time I feel the strong need to point out to him that what he did was incredibly negative, incredibly out of line and incredibly the opposite of what we try to learn in our meeting about love and support. So, on that note, now that I have gotten that off my chest….Peace be with him, bastard that he is!

Metaphorical Breakthrough

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Metaphorical Breakthrough

Aquarius Horoscope for week of May 17, 2012

Verticle Oracle cardAquarius (January 20-February 19)
You may not have heard about the “forbidden colors.” And you certainly haven’t seen them, even though they exist. They’re reddish green and yellowish blue, which the cells of your retina are not built to register. However, scientists have figured out a trick by which these hues can be made visible. A few lucky people have actually caught a glimpse of them. I bring this to your attention, Aquarius, because I suspect you are close to experiencing a metaphorical version of this breakthrough — seeing something that is supposedly impossible to see. 

Boy do I ever need to have breakthrough, be it metaphorical or otherwise. This week has been a real struggle for me emotionally and I do apologize to my friends here at WordPress. Let me simply state this for the record. My Buddha blog is all about getting in touch with nature, my nature and the nature of those around me. As with most things in life you have to take the good with the bad. This week seems to be one of the bad ones. But, I do promise you and myself that it’s going to get better.

 

Love and Support

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Love and Support

Aquarius Horoscope for week of April 12, 2012

Verticle Oracle cardAquarius (January 20-February 19)
We all know that spiders are talented little creatures. Spiders’ silk is as strong as steel, and their precisely geometric webs are engineering marvels. But even though they have admirable qualities I admire, I don’t expect to have an intimate connection with a spider any time soon. A similar situation is at work in the human realm. I know certain people who are amazing creators and leaders but don’t have the personal integrity or relationship skills that would make them trustworthy enough to seek out as close allies. Their beauty is best appreciated from afar. Consider the possibility that the ideas I’m articulating here would be good for you to meditate on right now, Aquarius. 
All of creation loves you very much. Even now, people you know and people you don’t know are collaborating to make sure you have all you need to make your next smart move. But are you willing to start loving life back with an equal intensity? The adoration it offers you has not exactly been unrequited, but there is room for you to be more demonstrative.

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Whatever you choose to focus your attention on, you will get more of it. If you often think of everything you lack and how sad you are that you don’t have it, you will tend to receive prolific evidence of how true that is. As you obsess on all the ways your life is different from what you wish it would be, you will become an expert in rousing feelings of frustration and you will attract experiences that assist you in rousing frustration.

If, on the other hand, you dwell on the good things you have already had the privilege to experience, you will expand your appreciation for their blessings, which in turn will amplify their beneficent impact on your life. You will also magnetize yourself to receive further good things, making it more likely that they will be attracted into your sphere. At the very least, you will get in the habit of enjoying yourself no matter what the outward circumstances are. 

Wow! Rob went on and on today in my horoscope! He just reminded me of how supportive my family and friends have been in my choice of sobriety. They have given me all the love and support that I could possibly ask for and it is helping me make smarter and better decisions, thank Buddha for my friends and family! I honestly don’t believe I could be this strong without them and I love them so much more for it. If you or someone you know is struggling with this same problem please remember that your support and love can make all the difference to them and whether they chose to live or throw their life away fruitlessly. 

Eggsactly!!!

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Eggsactly!!!

You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. Kahlil Gibran

I had a lot of fun this year decorating eggs for Easter! From top to bottom and left to right. My own design, Dragonfly, peacock feather, Om Mani Padme Hum, Lotus flower, my design, my design, flowers, dolphin, pink sunflower, heart, cattails and peace. I tried to pick designs that had significance in my life. Easter was wonderful this year. We had family and friends over, including my daughter’s new boyfriend Isaiah. He’s very cute and and a very nice person. Thank Buddha my daughter has good taste! Dinner was wonderful, except for the biscuits that I pulled an internet recipe for. Afterwards we had my homemade German chocolate cake and French vanilla ice cream. It is one of the best Easters that I can remember. I love cooking and sharing my culinary skills with family and friends. Holidays, whether you are Christian or Buddhist, are a time to give and share. They should be representative of selflessness and love…I hope all had a beautiful day…As Always…Peace Jaz

Peacock Presence

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Peacock Presence

For some reason I keep running into peacocks. It seems that every time I turn around some image of a peacock is crossing my path. It started a few days ago when I won a peacock necklace. Then when I went shopping at The World Market I ran into a peacock ring that I just had to have. Later that same night I went shopping for a journal for my daughter and guess what? You guessed it, I found her a journal that had peacock feathers imprinted on it. These are just a few of the instances, everywhere I go I keep seeing peacocks, peacock feathers and representations of peacocks. I think Buddha is trying to tell me something, and I think it is something very positive in relation to my sobriety. I’m still trying to understand the significance and since it seems to be a recurring theme in my life I’m quite certain there is an underlying positive message. Not so very long ago I kept running into crows, not just a couple, not even just a few, but whole murders of crows, and at that time I was in a very dark place. I never take messages from nature for granted and I firmly believe that the peacock message is meant for me to gain some better understanding of the nature of my new found state in my path to nirvana. 

From “The wheel of Sharp Weapons”, written by Dharmaraksita

In jungles of poisonous plants strut the peacocks,

Through medicine gardens of beauty lie near.

The masses of peacocks do not find gardens pleasant,

But thrive on the essence of poisonous plants,

In similar fashion the brave bodhisattvas

Remain in the jungle of worlds concern.

No matter how joyful this world pleasure garden,

These brave ones are never attracted to pleasures,

But thrive in the jungle of suffering and pain.


 The Symbolism of peacocks in Buddhism

 In buddhism they symbolize wisdom.

Peacocks are said to have the ability of eating poisonous plants without being affected by them. Because of that, they are synonimous with the great bodhisattvas. A bodhisattva is able to take delusions as the path toward liberation and transform the poisonous mind of ignorance, desire and hatred [moha, raga, dvesa] into the thought of enlightenment or bodhicitta, which opens colourfully like the peacocks’ tail. 

The mind of the sentient beings in this world is like a thick forest of desire and hatred. The pleasures and material possessions are like a beautiful medicinal garden. The brave-minded bodhisattvas, because of having realised the shortcomings of samsara, are not atracted to samsaric pleasures, just as the peacocks are not attracted to medicinal plants. The bodhisattvas, having the attitude of wishing only to work for sentient beings and not desiring any happiness for themselves, can utilise the poisonous thoughts of ignorance, desire, hatred and so forth in order to accomplish the works for sentient beings.

By eating poison, the peacocks’ body becomes healthy and beautiful. He is adorned with five feathers on the head, which symbolize the five paths of the boddhisattva and the attainment of the five Buddha families. They have beautiful colours, like blue, red, green and please other beings just by being seen. Similarly, any body who sees a bodhisattva receives great happiness in his mind. The peacock’s eating habits of eating poisonous plants do not cause harm to other beings. Similarly the bodhisattvas don’t give the slightest harm to any other sentient beings. By eating poison the colours of his feathers become bright and his body healthy. Similarly, by taking all problems and suffering upon themselves, the bodhisattvas quickly purify the mental blocks and develop their mind quickly, attaining higher and higher realization. Particularly peacocks symbolize the transmutting of desire into the path of liberation. Therefore, they are the vehicle of Buddha amitabha, who represents desire and attachment transmuted into the Wisdom of Discriminating Awareness.

I am Too Blind to See

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I am Too Blind to See

They call this war a cloud over the land. But they made the weather and then they stand in the rain and say ‘Shit, it’s raining!’

Ok, WTF. I went to the store last night and here comes that damn murder of crows. What is the deal?! Just when I think I finally am at peace things just get tossed. I feel like someone is trying to pull me into a twisted knot like a pretzel. I just wrote, not so long ago, about the “Omen of Crows”. I don’t seem to be able to escape those black bastards. I really wish they would stop following me. They seemed to be travelling the same direction I was travelling as if to tell me, “Stop! Don’t go that way!” Maybe I put to much cadence in nature but I can’t help myself because I believe nature has it’s own way of resolving issues, selective evolution and all that crap. I love Buddha, very much, but he really has to stop sending me messages. Nature has it’s own way of speaking to us and if we listen very carefully we can hear every subtle message it sends, although at times too painful to hear, so we choose to ignore what is blatantly in front of us. Maybe I am being so blind that I just refuse to hear or see what is right in front of me biting me right on the nose.

In the Stillness We Find

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In the Stillness We Find

“Through return to simple living Comes control of desires. In control of desires Stillness is attained. In stillness the world is restored.” Lao Tzu

 It never ceases to amaze me how quiet my heart and mind can become when I choose to still the demons that threaten that very peace and quiet. Sometimes I forget the most simplest lesson Buddha has taught me of being still. I never take enough time to simply be still and meditate and I allow the world around me to become convoluted by my very own thoughts. Things have been so erratic lately I need to remind myself to take a little time with my mala beads and say my mantra at least once daily. As chaotic as my life has been lately I need to do this every chance I get. We forget sometimes that that very stillness of our hearts and minds will only serve to help us, particularly in times of difficulty. Om Mani Padme Hum, peace be with everyone today!

 

Smile and the World Smiles With You

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Smile and the World Smiles With You

“Because of your smile, you make life more beautiful.” -Thich Nhat Hanh 

Sometimes I forget to smile, especially when I am out in public. I find myself walking around, deep in thought and not aware that I have a rather grumpy look on my face. I’m trying to remind myself to smile at people when I am out and about, to share a little smile with just one person can alter how you feel and how that person feels. It’s such a simple gesture, but I think we all get so wrapped up in our day-to-day lives that we forget to simply smile at a stranger, to make another person feel a little warmth. To share a smile with someone you don’t know is one of the best gifts you can give and it’s free.