Pureland study group anyone?

Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby kirtu » Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:38 pm

PorkChop wrote:
kirtu wrote:We can approach the sutras in different ways. I tend to like to begin with what looks like an approach from literature and gets dates, origins, etc. on the texts as a start. I haven't done this previously with Pure Land sutras. Does anyone have a putative chronology of the sutras?

Kirt


From wiki all I got was this:
I think the Pratyutpanna is the first reference to Amitabha, it was translated into Chinese between 178 and 189 CE.


Thanks!

Were they all translated from Sanskrit or possibly other languages as well? Do exemplars from these languages still exist?

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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby Son of Buddha » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:04 pm

gingercatni wrote:Hi everyone,

I've been reading the forums on and off for the past few months and I've noticed people seem to be a little be lonely, confused about the teachings (I'm guilty of that too! :tongue: ) so why don't we study the sutra's together?

I thought we could go through each of the 3 main Pureland Sutra's and post on here maybe each month and discuss our individual interpretation of the sutra's and get advice from each other. I suppose what I'm suggesting is uniting as our own little Pureland community to help one another.

Just a thought, let me know what you all think.

Take care.



Name a date,time,topic to speak on mabey a day where most can make it to the keyboard(of course this is almost impossible since everyone has different scheldules)
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby PorkChop » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:59 pm

kirtu wrote:Thanks!
Were they all translated from Sanskrit or possibly other languages as well? Do exemplars from these languages still exist?
Kirt


Just know what's on wiki....
Pratyutpanna = 1st century BCE from Gandhara, translated by Lokaksema, no mention of language or existing copies of originals.
Infinite Life Sutra (Larger Sukhavati) = probably 1st to 2nd century CE from Gandhara, shows signs of Gandhari Prakrit in the Chinese translation, copies in the Kharosthi script also known to exist in China, sanskrit copy still around, translated into Chinese 12 times (5 still around), most popular translation probably Buddhabhadra (359-429 CE).
Amitabha Sutra (Smaller Sukhavati) = probably in India from 100 CE, translated from sanskrit into Chinese by Kumārajīva in 402 CE, originally composed in a Prakrit, no mention of existing copies of originals.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby RikudouSennin » Sat Mar 16, 2013 4:38 am

Im studying more and trying to get a good understanding of Mahayana.

I have a question though;
1)what exactly is the practice in Pure Land that will lead to complete enlightenment in this life?
Is it the recitation of Buddha Naam?

2)How to make sure you are reborn in Sukhavati?

3) are there gradual stages in Buddha Naam recitation?

I apologize if this is off topic. Thanks
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby PorkChop » Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:46 am

RikudouSennin wrote:Im studying more and trying to get a good understanding of Mahayana.

I have a question though;
1)what exactly is the practice in Pure Land that will lead to complete enlightenment in this life?
Is it the recitation of Buddha Naam?

2)How to make sure you are reborn in Sukhavati?

3) are there gradual stages in Buddha Naam recitation?

I apologize if this is off topic. Thanks
:heart:


Personally I think these are appropriate questions for this forum, especially if this sutra study is the start of a broader interest in Pure Land practice.

1. Pure Land practice is based on the idea of buddhanusatti (mindfulness of the Buddha), which has a precedent in some of the earliest parts of Sutta Nipata - some of the earliest parts of the Pali Suttas. Buddhanusatti is particularly recommended for householders and those who can't/won't become monastics. In Theravada and Early Buddhism, budhanusatti & faith leads to being born in a Pure Abode, where anagamis (non returners) are born, even Sarakaani who died of alcoholism. Bodhisattvas are said (by Theravada only) not to be born there, but those anagamis born there can achieve Nibbana right away and become the Dharma protectors for something like 16 mahakalpas (great eons), only improving their level of rebirths. The anagamis in the Pure Abodes are the ones said to foretell the coming of the next Samyaksam Buddha. In Mahayana, the difference is that some (I believe Honen preached that only those in the 9th grade of Pure Land birth) can come back to be born as full Buddhas. There are various different practices that Pure Land buddhism uses, the main one being "nienfo", "nembutsu", or Buddha name recitation. The Pratyutpana sutra prescribes a constant, non-stop walking meditation (reciting the name) that (according to Zhiyi?) can last for 90 days; though many retreats of this type are much shorter in duration. This non-stop walking means no sleep and no rest, but by the end it's said that by the end Amitabha can be seen. The Visualization Sutra includes elaborate visualization techniques that start simple and gradually progress. Other forms of Pure Land practice include sutra recitation, recitation of dharanis, morning & evening ceremonies, and meditation. Any of these practices can ultimately lead to enlightenment, given diligent practice and the appropriate causes and conditions. There are something like 290 Mahayana sutra references to Amitabha's Pure Land. Personally, I think it's important to note for westerners, that this technique (buddhanusatti) works to purify the mind, regardless of any interaction with spiritual beings - this is especially espoused by Early Buddhism, traditional Theravada, as well as adherents of Mind-Only Pure Land. I can't particularly remember the reference, but there are 3 types of fully enlightened Buddhas: those based in wisdom (Shakyamuni), those based in compassion (Maitreya), and those based in faith.

2. The general rule is 10 true recitations, though there are some debates about whether this small number needs to occur at the time of death or can occur earlier in one's life. One of Honen's (Japanese Jodo Shu) students, for example, preached 1 genuine recitation was all that was required - though this was highly controversial and was generally warned against. Meritorious deeds & yogic achievements can affect the level of rebirth that one achieves in the Pure Land, it is taught that there are 9 separate grades in the Mahayana Pure Land teachings. In Early Buddhism and Theravada it is said that attainments and ability in severing the lower fetters decide which of the Pure Abodes one is born into. According to Mahayana, doubt in the method might require one to be reborn in the "bud of the lotus," thus requiring one to be somewhat "not free" for a certain period of time (500 years?) where one would not encounter any dharma teachings or enlightened beings. This is looked at as for the good of the practitioner, in order to resolve such doubts (kind of like quarantine) - a rite of purification before one is pure enough to enter the Pure Land.

3. Well some of the various levels of the practice are described above. Recitation of the name, following precepts/ethical behavior, and constant mindfulness of the Buddha are said to be enough to get the job done, but the level of accomplishment will reflect in the Pure Land/Pure Abode birth achieved. In Japanese Pure Land, practice is said to be more out of gratitude than for self-interested motivations and that behavior should neither be antinomian (against common social values) nor overly obsessed with meritorious deeds. It should be noted, however that gratitude is a powerful motivator for Japanese people, often stronger than any motivations for self-improvement. Though the popular opinion of some Japanese Pure Land adherents is that they disregard other sutra study & other practices outside of name recitation, it should be noted that the founder of Jodo Shu, aka Japanese Pure Land Honen (the teacher of Shinran, founder of Jodo Shin Shu) recommended reading all the Sutras (Agamas/Pali Nikayas as well as the Mahayana sutras), but also warned that one should not be prideful of such deeds. In Chinese Pure Land, vegetarianism is recommended, following the 5 precepts is heavily recommended, and meditation is also encouraged. The Pure Land sutras themselves encourage abandoning worldly aims and severing attachments, including those for loved ones.

If anyone has any corrections for this post, please add them. I apologize in advance if any of my understandings are incorrect.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby RikudouSennin » Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:58 am

Okay perfect answers, clarified alot of things.
For years i practiced japa in a holy name tradition where it was recommened by the luminaries of the tradition to chant 100,000 names daily. And the siddhas of the tradition would chant from 3x to 7x thats amount....daily.

Daily i would aspire to chant 64 malas (100,000 names) and some days i would accomplish it.

The point being i wish to chant the name of Amitabha Buddha thousands of times daily, and vow for rebirth.
I have a feeling this sadhana will help to remove doubts and perhaps increase my chance fo a higher grade.

The PL path is very ancient and will definetly lead to enlightenment, i can feel it in my bone. But i have alot of study, practice to do.

Thank you for your patience
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby Son of Buddha » Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:20 pm

here is a link to Master Sheng Yen teachings on Buddha Mindfulness Samadhi
(you can find more on this type of practice and stages by looking up Pureland,puremind)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NMgftCJ ... UErKJcADPQ" target="_blank
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby PorkChop » Sun Mar 17, 2013 1:24 am

RikudouSennin wrote:Okay perfect answers, clarified alot of things.
For years i practiced japa in a holy name tradition where it was recommened by the luminaries of the tradition to chant 100,000 names daily. And the siddhas of the tradition would chant from 3x to 7x thats amount....daily.

Daily i would aspire to chant 64 malas (100,000 names) and some days i would accomplish it.

The point being i wish to chant the name of Amitabha Buddha thousands of times daily, and vow for rebirth.
I have a feeling this sadhana will help to remove doubts and perhaps increase my chance fo a higher grade.

The PL path is very ancient and will definetly lead to enlightenment, i can feel it in my bone. But i have alot of study, practice to do.

Thank you for your patience
:heart:


Sounds like you have an awesome head start on this type of practice!
Seems now you just need some tweaking of the object of mindfulness & aspirations; which should be provided by these sutra studies.
As far as relieving doubts, I know that Tibetan Buddhism may have an empowerment ritual for this practice, fpmt has an Amitabha Phowa book, but as it's a sutra-based practice I don't know that empowerment is necessary - certainly not required from the East Asian Mahayana point of view.
For myself, I was pretty apprehensive about this dharma door when I first encountered it this summer (some of my posts from that time are still viewable on this board), but the more I've explored it, my appreciation for this practice has grown by leaps and bounds.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby gingercatni » Sun Mar 17, 2013 7:45 pm

Son of Buddha wrote:
gingercatni wrote:Hi everyone,

I've been reading the forums on and off for the past few months and I've noticed people seem to be a little be lonely, confused about the teachings (I'm guilty of that too! :tongue: ) so why don't we study the sutra's together?

I thought we could go through each of the 3 main Pureland Sutra's and post on here maybe each month and discuss our individual interpretation of the sutra's and get advice from each other. I suppose what I'm suggesting is uniting as our own little Pureland community to help one another.

Just a thought, let me know what you all think.

Take care.



Name a date,time,topic to speak on mabey a day where most can make it to the keyboard(of course this is almost impossible since everyone has different scheldules)


How about April 30th thats a good month and a half, plenty of time for people to read the shorter Amitabha Sutra and take notes to pose questions, then we can work our way through the others. Let me know if this sounds okay,

:smile:
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby _username_ » Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:01 pm

I'll join. I've done the Medicine Buddha recitation though its Tibetan and not Pure Land.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby Nosta » Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:05 pm

30 April as the end of line for reading? Thats a good idea.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby PorkChop » Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:23 am

_username_ wrote:I'll join. I've done the Medicine Buddha recitation though its Tibetan and not Pure Land.


Medicine Buddha's dharani & mantra are from the Medicine Buddha sutra, which is technically a Pure Land sutra, even mentions one of his vows being to encourage people to want to be reborn in Amitabha's Pure Land. By studying this sutra, you'll be helping him keep his vow. :)
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby plwk » Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:37 am

I'll join. I've done the Medicine Buddha recitation though its Tibetan and not Pure Land.
Medicine Buddha recitation is a form of Pure Land practice of buddhanusmrti or mindfulness / contemplation of the Buddha.

The Tibetan Buddhists are not the only ones who have this practice. In East Asian Mahayana Traditions, of which Pure Land belongs to, we do contemplative recitation & bowing prostrations using His Name, recite His Mantra and Sutras and plus in the Chinese Mahayana, an added feature of a three part repentance ritual based on the Medicine Buddha Sutra texts. In the Chinese Mahayana Tradition, generally, the Medicine Buddha is the next most popular after Amitabha Buddha. The main difference between the two is that in the former, it has an added Tantra dimension to it whilst in the latter it's Sutra based method.

In the East Asian Mahayana Trads that follow the Chinese liturgical & lunar calendar (with exception of Japan), He is commemorated on the last day of the 9th Lunar Month, depending on the year calculation which has the 29th or 30th day for that month. In bigger Chinese Mahayana temples / monasteries, they have a side shrine to the Medicine Buddha known as the 'Eastern Hall of Merits', normally on the left side of the main shrine hall.

His devotion is popularly practiced for reasons like healing, overcoming / pacifying obstacles, longevity, for liberation of lower realms sentient beings as well as seeking birth in His Eastern Pure Lapis Lazuli Land for attainment and accomplishment of the Bodhisattva Path for Supreme Buddhahood for all parent sentient beings.

Typically, in traditional East Asian Mahayana iconography:
a. The Medicine Master Lapis Lazuli Radiance Tathagata would be depicted in Bhikshu robes, golden hue body (some modern renditions would depict him in lapis lazuli color), seated on a lotus throne, right hand holding a medicinal plant twig (varies with artforms, some depicting a rebirth mudra), left hand upturned holding a stupa / pagoda or medicine bowl

b. The Buddha entourage: of the 'Eight Medicine Buddhas Brethren' either above or on the Medicine Master Lapis Lazuli Radiance Tathagata's left / right sides
(6 Tathagatas: King of Clear Knowing, Melodious Ocean of Dharma, Supreme Glory Free From Sorrow, Stainless Excellent Gold, King of Melodious Sound & Glorious Renown of Excellent Sign, Sakyamuni Tathagata: as the Host Buddha of the current Dispensation in our Saha World and the main Host Buddha of the Eastern Pure Lapis Lazuli Land, the Medicine Master Lapis Lazuli Radiance Tathagata)

c. The Bodhisattva entourage:
Eight Great Bodhisattvas: 2 Host Bodhisattvas of the Pure Lapis Lazuli Land: the Moon Radiance Bodhisattva on His Right (depicted as carrying a crescent moon or a Sutra text), the Sun Radiance Bodhisattva (depicted as carrying a sun or a medicine bowl), 6 other Bodhisattvas as per Sutra text: Manjusri Bodhisattva, Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva, Mahastamaprapta Bodhisattva, Inexhaustible Intention Bodhisattva, Jewelled Udumbara Flower Bodhisattva, Medicine King Bodhisattva, Medicine Superior Bodhisattva and Maitreya Bodhisattva.

d. The Dharma Protectors entourage:
The 4 Great Heavenly Kings: Vaisravana, Virudhaka, Dhrtrarastra & Virupaksa.
The 12 Great Yaksa Generals: General Kimbhiro, General Vajra, General Mekhilo, General Antilo, General Anilo, General Santhilo, General Indalo, General Payilo, General Mahalo, General Cidalo, General Caundhulo, and General Vikalo.

Connection with the Amitabha Buddha & Sukhavati
http://cttbusa.org/medicine_master/sutra.htm
The merit, virtue, and adornments of this Land are identical to those of the Western Land of Ultimate Bliss."

Moreover, Manjushri, there may be those among the fourfold assembly of Bhikshus, Bhikshunis, Upasakas and Upasikas, as well as other good men and women of pure faith, who accept and uphold the eight precepts either for one year or for three months, practicing and studying them.

With these good roots, they may vow to be born in the Western Land of Ultimate Bliss where the Buddha of Limitless Life dwells, to hear the Proper Dharma, but their resolve may not be firm.

However, if they hear the name of the World Honored One, Medicine Master Vaidurya Light Tathagata, then as the end of their lives draws near, before them will appear Eight Great Bodhisattvas, whose names are: Manjushri Bodhisattva, The Bodhisattva Who Observes the Sounds of the World, Great Strength Bodhisattva, Inexhaustible Intention Bodhisattva, Jeweled Udumbara Flower Bodhisattva, Medicine King Bodhisattva, Medicine Superior Bodhisattva, and Maitreya Bodhisattva.

Those Eight Great Bodhisattvas will appear in space to show them the way, and they will naturally be born by transformation in that Land, amid precious flowers of a myriad colors.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby shaunc » Mon Mar 18, 2013 4:55 am

30th April. I'll start reading.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby plwk » Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:08 am

I've been reading the forums on and off for the past few months and I've noticed people seem to be a little be lonely, confused about the teachings (I'm guilty of that too! :tongue: )
That's what the sub forum of Pure Land under East Asian Buddhism is for isn't it...
I thought we could go through each of the 3 main Pureland Sutra's and post on here maybe each month and discuss our individual interpretation of the sutra's and get advice from each other.
This forum already have a Sutra Studies section available and these links 1 2 3 4 are already discussing Pure Land related texts which anyone can further add on/expand on them with further discussions. It takes a little bit more of diligence and proactiveness to expand on what is already available, no?
I suppose what I'm suggesting is uniting as our own little Pureland community to help one another.
Is there in any way that the present Pure Land subforum is not serving the above purpose? If a facility is available but underused, what's the point of creating another study group? More white elephants on this site?
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby gingercatni » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:23 pm

plwk wrote:
I've been reading the forums on and off for the past few months and I've noticed people seem to be a little be lonely, confused about the teachings (I'm guilty of that too! :tongue: )
That's what the sub forum of Pure Land under East Asian Buddhism is for isn't it...
I thought we could go through each of the 3 main Pureland Sutra's and post on here maybe each month and discuss our individual interpretation of the sutra's and get advice from each other.
This forum already have a Sutra Studies section available and these links 1 2 3 4 are already discussing Pure Land related texts which anyone can further add on/expand on them with further discussions. It takes a little bit more of diligence and proactiveness to expand on what is already available, no?
I suppose what I'm suggesting is uniting as our own little Pureland community to help one another.
Is there in any way that the present Pure Land subforum is not serving the above purpose? If a facility is available but underused, what's the point of creating another study group? More white elephants on this site?


The intent was to create something in our own category, as for me at least it's the first place I go to. You seem to be really against people reaching out to one another, or at least that the impression I get from your post.

I don't think what I have proposed is in any way a white elephant, but if what has been suggested here with genuine interest and merit is causing issue perhaps those interested would like to visit here https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/106288541 ... 8792122175 where such discussion and extending the hand of friendship is welcome. :group:
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby plwk » Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:34 pm

The intent was to create something in our own category, as for me at least it's the first place I go to. You seem to be really against people reaching out to one another, or at least that the impression I get from your post.
This is what happens when something that is objectively pointed out but taken in another way.
And the points I raised are not even rebutted with facts and figures but an assumption of me with a purported act. If any regular user here who has looked at your pattern of visits, disappearing for periods of time and then suddenly reappearing again, and then promoting a group that you created in your part of the world and asking for donation support and whatnot, and I am told of an 'impression' about me purportedly not wanting people to come together? Do I see some dots connected? Hmmm

I have been here since the dawn of this forum site, with other founding members here, under another username and now this one, nearly everyday, posting stuff to keep this site and especially this subforum alive, especially looking out for this subforum and YET, I don't even dare think of imposing on anyone to come here much less expect them to, instead of grumbling about what we don't have here, I helped to create with others here, this subforum with organised resources links and get the discussion and debate ball mounted and rolling. Though I would like to see more 'butts on the seats' for this ghost town subforum to borrow a phrase from 'Sister Act 1', but I darn well know the unpredictable nature of forums and its erratic members who have busy lives and better things to do. And besides, there's more interest in other parts of Mahayana, Vajrayana and General Buddhism than this corner as I have observed over the years. Can I even purposely halt and divert the traffic here?

And I am taken as 'against people reaching out...'? In this subforum ghost town? LOL!
I don't think what I have proposed is in any way a white elephant, but if what has been suggested here with genuine interest and merit is causing issue perhaps those interested would like to visit here https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/106288541 ... 8792122175 where such discussion and extending the hand of friendship is welcome. :group:
There's no issue, perceived or otherwise. Perhaps, some are just not made to develop and grow a forum that they're in and yet others who just come on sites to promote stuff that they want and then disappear again when their targets are met and just press the start button again when necessity calls for it? And then what of the site here? A convenient springboard?

When pointed out on what is available here and could be expanded on, a mistaken impression is expressed and then curiously, a link to another site is given.
One can't help but to wonder if the OP had originally had this in mind to promote another site here whilst using the framework of networking and giving the users and visitors here an impression and the perception that this site and the Pure Land subforum does not promote a facility for people to do a group discussion or to network, so, in the end analysis, it's not about wanting to develop nor use this subforum nor this forum site further and more effectively, but getting traffic for another site as linked?

So yeah, maybe you're right. It wasn't about creating another white elephant here after all. Perhaps, now it's my turn to assume, if I may say it, this was just a roundabout way to promote another site under 'reaching out to one another', 'group study' and whatnot...

On some forum sites, such behaviour is bad form and in others, it can lead to an eventual warning and ban.
On this forum, there's a group of users (who shall remain nameless) from an organisation that does just that by using social media strategies by raising discussions just to link or direct people to their own choice site and promote themselves in the end result versus a genuine discussion or debate. But when one goes on their site to do the same, one is shot down and warned. Some other consentious users who have spotted them have expressed disapproval and so far, they have kept low profile and below the radar of late.

It's a free market. Anyone and everyone can choose what they want, where they want, when they want, why they want and how they want.
But as always, cause and effect is particularly effective and true in our world of phenomena and conventional appearances, offline and online...
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby PorkChop » Mon Mar 18, 2013 4:51 pm

plwk wrote:This forum already have a Sutra Studies section available and these links 1 2 3 4 are already discussing Pure Land related texts which anyone can further add on/expand on them with further discussions. It takes a little bit more of diligence and proactiveness to expand on what is already available, no?
I suppose what I'm suggesting is uniting as our own little Pureland community to help one another.
Is there in any way that the present Pure Land subforum is not serving the above purpose? If a facility is available but underused, what's the point of creating another study group? More white elephants on this site?


I understand where you're coming from and you have a very valid point.
You've done a lot of work to keep this subforum going and it hasn't gone unnoticed.
You introduced me to the teachings of Sheng-Yen and I'm very grateful for that.
I would only state that some of those conversations you linked do in the Sutra Studies subforum are from 2009 and there can be issues with resurrecting necro posts.
If it's not too much trouble, I think it would be nice to keep this sutra discussion/study group here on this subforum.
The Pure Land subforum could definitely use the traffic and I think it could do a lot to create a little unity & dialog here.
That's what I think the second quote above was referencing - not that this subforum is inadequate, but that participation could be improved.

So many outsiders seem to misunderstand Pure Land and dismiss it outright.
Sunday night at the Tiantai temple I go to, one of the seniors was really trashing on Pure Land practice.
Usually the monk sets him straight, but he was doing this out of earshot of the monk, and he was saying these things to first time visitors who are pretty new to Buddhism.
We got into a bit of a heated discussion.
I did my best to educate him & the new members, quoting a lot of what I said above, and being respectful while he openly disrespected the practice.
When he realized that his bashing wasn't working, he eventually got up and left without a word.
If this is the situation at a Tiantai temple that actively advocates Pure Land practice, it only gets worse elsewhere with people completely outside of the tradition.

I've been kicked off of other forums before just for having been associated with Pure Land practice and posting on this forum.
One of the admins even followed up with an email saying "go back to DharmaWheel!" before I ever even typed the words "Pure Land," "Amitabha," or "Mahayana".
I think getting openly dismissed and ridiculed by other "Buddhists" online can make people a little gun shy.
Therefor I think we should do whatever we can to provide a friendly environment and encourage dialog.
Pure Land's a very deep & lovely dharma door that works on so many different levels, from the most rational to the most devotional.
If we could give it more of an online voice, maybe others would see it too.
At the very least, it would be nice to foster more dialog and encourage each other in our practice.
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Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby gingercatni » Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:06 pm

plwk wrote:
The intent was to create something in our own category, as for me at least it's the first place I go to. You seem to be really against people reaching out to one another, or at least that the impression I get from your post.
This is what happens when something that is objectively pointed out but taken in another way.
And the points I raised are not even rebutted with facts and figures but an assumption of me with a purported act. If any regular user here who has looked at your pattern of visits, disappearing for periods of time and then suddenly reappearing again, and then promoting a group that you created in your part of the world and asking for donation support and whatnot, and I am told of an 'impression' about me purportedly not wanting people to come together? Do I see some dots connected? Hmmm

I have been here since the dawn of this forum site, with other founding members here, under another username and now this one, nearly everyday, posting stuff to keep this site and especially this subforum alive, especially looking out for this subforum and YET, I don't even dare think of imposing on anyone to come here much less expect them to, instead of grumbling about what we don't have here, I helped to create with others here, this subforum with organised resources links and get the discussion and debate ball mounted and rolling. Though I would like to see more 'butts on the seats' for this ghost town subforum to borrow a phrase from 'Sister Act 1', but I darn well know the unpredictable nature of forums and its erratic members who have busy lives and better things to do. And besides, there's more interest in other parts of Mahayana, Vajrayana and General Buddhism than this corner as I have observed over the years. Can I even purposely halt and divert the traffic here?

And I am taken as 'against people reaching out...'? In this subforum ghost town? LOL!
I don't think what I have proposed is in any way a white elephant, but if what has been suggested here with genuine interest and merit is causing issue perhaps those interested would like to visit here https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/106288541 ... 8792122175 where such discussion and extending the hand of friendship is welcome. :group:
There's no issue, perceived or otherwise. Perhaps, some are just not made to develop and grow a forum that they're in and yet others who just come on sites to promote stuff that they want and then disappear again when their targets are met and just press the start button again when necessity calls for it? And then what of the site here? A convenient springboard?

When pointed out on what is available here and could be expanded on, a mistaken impression is expressed and then curiously, a link to another site is given.
One can't help but to wonder if the OP had originally had this in mind to promote another site here whilst using the framework of networking and giving the users and visitors here an impression and the perception that this site and the Pure Land subforum does not promote a facility for people to do a group discussion or to network, so, in the end analysis, it's not about wanting to develop nor use this subforum nor this forum site further and more effectively, but getting traffic for another site as linked?

So yeah, maybe you're right. It wasn't about creating another white elephant here after all. Perhaps, now it's my turn to assume, if I may say it, this was just a roundabout way to promote another site under 'reaching out to one another', 'group study' and whatnot...

On some forum sites, such behaviour is bad form and in others, it can lead to an eventual warning and ban.
On this forum, there's a group of users (who shall remain nameless) from an organisation that does just that by using social media strategies by raising discussions just to link or direct people to their own choice site and promote themselves in the end result versus a genuine discussion or debate. But when one goes on their site to do the same, one is shot down and warned. Some other consentious users who have spotted them have expressed disapproval and so far, they have kept low profile and below the radar of late.

It's a free market. Anyone and everyone can choose what they want, where they want, when they want, why they want and how they want.
But as always, cause and effect is particularly effective and true in our world of phenomena and conventional appearances, offline and online...

:shrug: plwk usually when someone takes apart someones post as you did mine, there is usually to follow a degree of criticism. The group here in northern ireland has been formed by myself and three others, we are a regulated non-profit limited by guarantee company, for the charity commission and local government. You make me sound like some kind of crook when in fact i was merely using the internet to help our mission here. I've donated in the past to things in other countries someimes helping things elsewhere helps things in your own country. I am so disapointed with your reaction, you have made me feel most unwelcome, so to save any further discussion, i won't be back here. Goodluck, and peace to all. :namaste:
gingercatni
 
Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:09 pm
Location: Belfast Northern Ireland

Re: Pureland study group anyone?

Postby black_tea » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:59 pm

gingercatni wrote:How about April 30th thats a good month and a half, plenty of time for people to read the shorter Amitabha Sutra and take notes to pose questions, then we can work our way through the others. Let me know if this sounds okay,

:smile:


Sounds good to me -- it's about time that I reread it.

gingercatni wrote: :shrug: plwk usually when someone takes apart someones post as you did mine, there is usually to follow a degree of criticism. The group here in northern ireland has been formed by myself and three others, we are a regulated non-profit limited by guarantee company, for the charity commission and local government. You make me sound like some kind of crook when in fact i was merely using the internet to help our mission here. I've donated in the past to things in other countries someimes helping things elsewhere helps things in your own country. I am so disapointed with your reaction, you have made me feel most unwelcome, so to save any further discussion, i won't be back here. Goodluck, and peace to all. :namaste:


There's no reason to leave. I think it's a good idea to get more discussion going in this forum -- yes there is a sutra discussion subforum, but this seems like a nice way to build a sense of community and support here. I sometimes attend a nonsectarian sangha because there is no place for Pureland practitioners where I live, but I do think it's helpful to have some sort of community (even if online) to turn to that is actually doing what you do and maybe having similar problems, questions, experiences, etc. Anyway, I for one appreciate what you are trying to do, and don't see why it should be a source of conflict.
black_tea
 
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Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2013 12:47 am

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