About bodhisattvas

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About bodhisattvas

Postby Jeffrely » Tue May 15, 2012 7:54 am

"sticking around" to assist all sentient beings to liberation.I hear about bodhisattvas striving to become Buddhas ASAP as a means to help enlighten sentient beings.


Are these different paths?
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Aemilius » Tue May 15, 2012 8:26 am

There is a valuable book by Har Dayal called Bodhhisattva Doctrine in Sanskrit Buddhist Literature, where Har Dayal says: " A bodhisattva's career covers about four times nine hundred sixty thousand million billion billion billion billions of years, i.e. 3840 followed by 57 zeros years. His calculations and discussion about the length of a bodhisattva's career are on page 79 and onwards in Har Dayal's book.
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Indrajala » Tue May 15, 2012 4:07 pm

Jeffrely wrote:"sticking around" to assist all sentient beings to liberation.I hear about bodhisattvas striving to become Buddhas ASAP as a means to help enlighten sentient beings.


Are these different paths?


Both are bodhisattva paths, but have the same goal in mind.

Initially a bodhisattva has the aspiration to achieve unexcelled perfect buddhahood with which to optimally benefit innumerable beings.

Eventually the bodhisattva perceives no beings to aid and aids immeasurable beings as a result.

Achieving buddhahood is the best way to aid beings, so this should be achieved swiftly if possible.
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Will » Tue May 15, 2012 4:30 pm

The pacing of bodhisattvas differs; tradition says there are three main attitudes:

1) The royal path, like a King, getting to be a buddha as fast as possible;
2) the ferry boat Captain, becoming a buddha at the same time as everyone reaches the 'other shore';
3) the Shepherd, waiting until all the lost 'sheep' are safely home before becoming a buddha.
One should refrain from biased judgments and doubting in fathoming the Buddha and the Dharma of the Buddhas. Even though a dharma may be extremely difficult to believe, one should nonetheless maintain faith in it. Nagarjuna
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Aemilius » Wed May 16, 2012 9:54 am

"As fast as possible" is a relative term, may be it means in 1000 000 lifetimes? That is fairly quick, when compared to
1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 years.
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby greentara » Wed May 16, 2012 12:03 pm

At first
I was irridescent
Then
I became transparent
Finally
I was absent.
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Aemilius » Sat May 19, 2012 10:59 am

One gets a good idea about the stages of bodhisattvahood from the teachings on the Ten Bhumis/Stages of bodhisattvas. Hirakawa Akira and Paul Groner say that the Ten Stages are found in Mahavastu, in Prajñaparamita and in the Dashabhumika sutra.
Here is a good description of them: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bh%C5%ABmi_(Buddhism)

The information of Hirakawa Akira and Paul Groner is in History Indian Buddhism: From Shakyamuni to Early Mahayana
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Aemilius » Tue Jun 12, 2012 9:47 am

greentara wrote:At first
I was irridescent
Then
I became transparent
Finally
I was absent.


Why absent, for Nirvana's sake!! That is simply nihilism!
Nirvana is not annihilation, Nirvana is the attainment of the Three Kayas of buddhahood. In terminology of Mahamudra you attain the spontaneous presence.
In Sravakayana an aspirant to arhathood conquers the three desires: 1. desire for sense experience, 2. desire for non-existence, and 3.desire for existence. Sravakayana too says that Nirvana is beyond the four propositions: existence, non-existence, both, & neither.
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Re: About bodhisattvas

Postby Tilopa » Tue Jun 12, 2012 11:35 am

greentara wrote:At first
I was irridescent
Then
I became transparent
Finally
I was absent.

This didn't happen on the deck of a starship by any chance?
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