Sakyadhita Canada
NEWSLETTER 
   MARCH, 2015

 

Vesak in Ottawa and 

Asian Heritage 

- Celebrate Together -

Vesak Day is the day Buddhists remember 

the birth, the 

enlightenment, 

and the passing away of the Buddha. The United Nations observe the day of 

Vesak at its headquarters and 

offices, worldwide. As Buddhism spread from India, it was adapted and celebrated in many different ways in 

various countries. 550 million people in the world identify 

Buddhism as their religion or way of life. Buddhist practitioners are encouraged to reiterate their 

determination to 

lead noble lives, to practice lov-ing-kindness and to bring peace of mind to themselves and peace to the world.

   

May 2nd, 2015, 

12:00 PM - 4:00 PM 

Jean Pigott Hall, 

Ottawa City Hall 

110 Laurier Ave West 

 

For more information please go to:

 www.VesakinOttawa.com
 

or contact:

VesakInOttawa@gmail.com




You may have noticed that we usually 'try' to get this newsletter out on the full moon. ( For those not really noticing!) it was yesterday!
With numerous events, and challenges taking place in my life these days....I am just going to 'try' and be OK with this.
I found comfort in reading Sarani's article below. 
" Crossing Over the Flood". 

"There are times for many of us, when we find that we have lost our way to one degree or another, and that our practice is falling short of where we would like it to be. When this happens, it can be a comfort to know that we are in good company "
"He was human, like us. Sometimes, he came to a standstill and sank. Sometimes, he struggled and got swept away."

May we all find comfort , and direction in the teachings.

Sincerely,
Susan
Sakyadhita Canada

 

              CROSSING OVER THE FLOOD 

 

A devata. "How, dear sir, did you cross the flood?" 

The Buddha, "By not halting, friend, and by not straining I crossed the flood." 

"But how is it, dear sir, that by not halting and by not straining you crossed the flood?" 

The Buddha "When I came to a standstill, friend, then I sank; but when I struggled, then I got swept away. It is in this way friend, that by not halting and by not straining I crossed the flood." 

                                                                          SN 1:1 

Many of us have come to think of the Buddha as a God Man. A man who was always Perfection. However, to do so, is to risk missing the purpose of the task that we have, as disciples of the Buddha, set before ourselves. We, like the Shakyan, Siddhartha, a seeker looking for an escape from suffering, face the same challenges that he did, but with one important difference: he found the solution and shared his Knowledge with us. We can use the teaching that he formulated his Knowledge as to achieve a clear and radiant consciousness, just as he did. It is not always easy to keep this in mind. There are times for many of us, when we find that we have lost our way to one degree or another, and that our practice is falling short of where we would like it to be. When this happens, it can be a comfort to know that we are in good company --- the bodhisattva, Siddhartha's. In the Pali Canon, we can find his humanity and see that it is like ours. We are told that there were times when he was afraid in the forest; times when he was dissatisfied with his teacher's achievements; times when he could see that what he was doing was not accomplishing what he hoped that it would and made different choices. Although it can be difficult to identify with the journey leading up to his realization of Buddhahood, it can be very helpful to do so. He was human, like us. Sometimes, he came to a standstill and sank. Sometimes, he struggled and got swept away. Having had these experiences himself, he was able to give us good advice on how to avoid them. In this regard, the importance of the Noble Eightfold Path cannot be underestimated. As we gain an understanding of each "fold" and come to see that, like a piece of cloth, the path is whole, that each fold is inseparable from the others, its value becomes apparent and the temptation to stand still or to struggle is undermined. Practice becomes more firmly established, we can stop standing still and we can stop straining. And, we, like Siddhartha, can cross the flood. 

 

Sar?ni

 

"A Feast for Mind and Heart"

Sakyadhita International's Ven. Karma Lekshe Tsomo, a distinguished scholar and Buddhist Studies professor, was a presenter at a major conference on Tibetan translation, the Tsadra Translation & Transmission Conference, held October 2-5, 2014, in Keystone, Colorado, US. The conference brought together 250 practitioners, academics, translators, students, and publishers from around the globe and from all Tibetan Buddhist schools to discuss translation issues and build community. Ven. Lekshe presented on gender in translation, and questions around gender came up over and over at various workshops as translators struggled with how to handle not just language in Tibetan texts that excludes women, but also teachings that demean women, disabled people, or so-called low-caste people. A fuller account of the conference, including its discussions about gender, appears in Mandala magazine. 

The article appears in the online edition of Mandala January-March 2015 at

 

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