Teachings of the Buddha Summary and Reaction
The book “Teachings of the Buddha” edited by Jack Kornfield is a collection of many stories drawn from popular sources of Indian, Tibetan, Chinese, and Japanese literature. Its short writings, poems, and drawings captured the essence of Buddhism, and helped Buddhists learn more about the path to Enlightenment. I have carefully chosen several of these short versus from the book, which I thought reflected the teachings nicely, and also intrigued me as a reader. Metta Sutta: This teaching taught followers to seek “the good” through peace and wisdom. One must not feel anger or hatred or wish harm upon one another. “Standing or walking, sitting or lying down, during all one’s waking hours, may one be mindful of this heart.” The Metta Sutta is in many ways comparable to many of the rules within the Ten Commandments of Christianity. The Sutra on Totality: This verse was specifically dedicated to the monks or devoted followers of Buddhism. It revealed the secret to life’s totality, almost as if it were answering the question on the meaning of life itself. The Sutra said that totality is to basically use all of your senses and its maximal potential. There could be other interpretations of this, but the Sutra also stated that any other claims of totality are false. The Sutra on the Full Awareness of Breathing: Meditation is one of the most important aspects of this religion and the breathing techniques are critical building blocks to effective meditation. Hence, this sutra fits nicely into the teachings of Buddha. Interesting, the way in which the Sutra described how one would practice breathing is extremely similar to the story of the Buddha himself. “The practitioner goes into a forest or to the foot of a tree, and sits stably in the lotus position.” Correct breathing, according to this Sutra, is to focus the mind on the body, being aware, calm, happy, and peaceful. It also means focusing on the fading of all dharma and...
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