With gratitude and courtesy of Ven. Dr. Hok Savann
មេត្តាធម៌ និង បុគ្គល
source: the big view
Since the making of human images of the Buddha was considered sacrilegious for a long time, Buddhist visual art has produced an elaborate vocabulary of symbolic and iconic forms of expressions. A great variety of Buddhist symbols is found in temples and in Buddhist visual art and literature. The following eight figures are among the more common ones. The lotus, the wheel, and the stupa can be seen in almost every Buddhist temple. One may understand these symbols as visual mantras. Contemplating these figures is an exercise in meditation to establish inner contact with the aspect that is represented.
| Lotus Flower
Padma – Symbol of Purity. Can be of any colour except blue.
The wheel of the law. The eight spokes represent the eightfold path.
The stupa is a symbolic grave monument where relics or the ashes of a holy monk are kept. It also symbolises the universe.
The three jewels – the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Sangha.
A parasol – protection against all evil; high rank.
Banner – the victory of the Buddha’s teachings.
The deer -usually in pairs- symbolises the first sermon of the Buddha which was held in the deer park of Benares.
The snake king. Vestige of pre-Buddhist fertility rituals and protector of the Buddha and the Dhamma.
Images of the Buddha were produced from the fifth century onwards. Continue reading
-The greatest achievement is selflessness.
-The greatest worth is self-mastery.
-The greatest quality is seeking to serve others.
-The greatest precept is continual awareness.
-The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
-The greatest action is not conforming with the worlds ways.
-The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
-The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
-The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
-The greatest patience is humility.
-The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
-The greatest meditation is a mind that lets go.
-The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances.
by Atisha (11th century Tibetan Buddhist master)
|1. Right View||Wisdom (Pajna)|
|2. Right Intention|
|3. Right Speech||Ethics (Sila)|
|4. Right Action|
|5. Right Livelihood|
|6. Right Effort||Mediation (Samadhi)|
|7. Right Mindfulness|
|8. Right Concentration|
The Noble Eightfold Path describes the way to the end of suffering, as it was laid out by Siddhartha Gautama. It is a practical guideline to ethical and mental development with the goal of freeing the individual from attachments and delusions; and it finally leads to understanding the truth about all things. Together with the Four Noble Truths it constitutes the gist of Buddhism. Great emphasis is put on the practical aspect, because it is only through practice that one can attain a higher level of existence and finally reach Nirvana. The eight aspects of the path are not to be understood as a sequence of single steps, instead they are highly interdependent principles that have to be seen in relationship with each other.
1. Right View
Right view is the beginning and the end of the path, it simply means to see and to understand things as they really are and to realise the Four Noble Truth. As such, right view is the cognitive aspect of wisdom. It means to see things through, to grasp the impermanent and imperfect nature of worldly objects and ideas, and to understand the law of karma and karmic conditioning. Right view is not necessarily an intellectual capacity, just as wisdom is not just a matter of intelligence. Instead, right view is attained, sustained, and enhanced through all capacities of mind. It begins with the intuitive insight that all beings are subject to suffering and it ends with complete understanding of the true nature of all things. Since our view of the world forms our thoughts and our actions, right view yields right thoughts and right actions. Continue reading