Faith

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Faith

Postby Will » Fri May 07, 2010 1:20 am

Faith as used in Buddhism is not the blind belief of other religions; but it is a needed factor in our attitude, so it is very important. Here is one sample from the Avatamsaka Sutra, ch. 22:

I. The Treasury of Belief

“Disciples of the Buddha, what is the Bodhisattva Mahasattvas’ Treasury of Belief?”

“These Bodhisattvas believe that all Dharmas are empty. They believe that all Dharmas are without an appearance. They believe that all Dharmas are wishless. They believe that all Dharmas are without creation. They believe that all Dharmas are without distinctions. They believe that all Dharmas are without reliance. They believe that all Dharmas are not able to be measured. They believe that all Dharmas are Unsurpassed. They believe that all Dharmas are difficult to transcend. They believe that all Dharmas are without production.”

“If Bodhisattvas can accord with all Dharmas in this way, then after they give rise to pure belief, when they hear that all Buddhadharmas are inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that all Buddhas are inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the realm of living beings is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the Dharma Realm is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the realm of empty space is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the realm of Nirvana is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid.”

“When they hear that the past is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the future is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the present is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that entering every kalpa is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid.”

“Why not? These Bodhisattvas, residing in the places of Buddhas, have thoroughly solid faith. They know that the Buddhas’ wisdom is boundless and inexhaustible. In each and every one of the limitless worlds of the ten directions, there are limitless Buddhas who have already attained, are now attaining, or will attain Anuttarasamyaksambodhi. They have already come into the world, are now coming into the world, or will come into the world. They have already entered Nirvana, are now entering Nirvana, or will enter Nirvana. The wisdom of these Buddhas does not increase, does not decrease; is not produced, is not destroyed; does not progress, does not retreat; is not near, is not far; is without knowing and without rejecting.”

“These Bodhisattvas enter into the Buddhas’ wisdom and accomplish boundless, inexhaustible belief. After they attain this belief, their minds do not retreat. Their minds do not become scattered or confused. They are indestructible and undefiled. They always have a foundation. They accord with sages, and dwell in the household of the Thus Come Ones.”

“They protect the seed nature of all Buddhas. They increase the faith and understanding of all Bodhisattvas. They comply with all Thus Come Ones’ good roots, and they give rise to the expedients of all Buddhas.”

“This is called the Bodhisattva Mahasattvas’ Treasury of Belief.”

“When Bodhisattvas dwell in this Treasury of Belief, they can hear and uphold all the Buddhadharma, speak it for living beings, and enable them to become enlightened
Last edited by Will on Fri May 21, 2010 2:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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: Faith

Postby muni » Fri May 07, 2010 11:52 am

"By merit of the altruistic mind, being born in the mindstream of all sentient beings, may they see the ultimate truth unveiled, the very face of buddha nature." Padma Vijaya. This pure altruistic mind in awakening, cannot without faith and devotion. :group:

When we can practice under the guidance of compassionate ones, the ordinary mind in which faith is rejected by discursive thoughts, will be undone. By the power of faith along the methods and intelligence, beings can cut through limits of solid knowing and intellectual elaborations.

Really nothing to do with blind faith, rather a let go of painful isolation.
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Re: Faith

Postby Will » Fri May 07, 2010 3:23 pm

muni,

This "letting go of our painful isolation" is really a beautiful way to look at it :applause:
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: Faith

Postby White Lotus » Fri May 07, 2010 8:03 pm

Noble Muni,
the very face of buddha nature." Padma Vijaya.


is it true to say that the face of all things is the face of buddha nature?
some might say seeing the emptiness of self and emptiness of all things is seeing the buddha nature? surely emptiness has not got to be seen, it is seen anyway, whether or not people realize it, with normal mind. everyone sees emptiness, they just dont know it.

what do you think... could you please keep your answer simple!!!
(sorry to be cheeky, not intended).

with respect, White Lotus.

a seed jacket, must
be shed when spring comes.
in summer she needs to grow.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: Faith

Postby muni » Sat May 08, 2010 7:32 am

White Lotus wrote:Noble Muni,
the very face of buddha nature." Padma Vijaya.


is it true to say that the face of all things is the face of buddha nature?
some might say seeing the emptiness of self and emptiness of all things is seeing the buddha nature? surely emptiness has not got to be seen, it is seen anyway, whether or not people realize it, with normal mind. everyone sees emptiness, they just dont know it.

what do you think... could you please keep your answer simple!!!
(sorry to be cheeky, not intended).

with respect, White Lotus.

a seed jacket, must
be shed when spring comes.
in summer she needs to grow.


Simple, yes of course. The noble one is not home but the light is on.
The not separate beams of the sun have no name.
I have nothing to offer.

:focus:
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Re: Faith

Postby Astus » Sat May 08, 2010 8:52 am

An interesting read: On the Meaning of “Faith (信)” in Early Chan School (PDF) by Munsun Kang (Ven. Hyewon)
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
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Re: Faith

Postby White Lotus » Sat May 08, 2010 5:55 pm

:namaste: Noble Muni,

Simple, yes of course. The noble one is not home but the light is on.
The not separate beams of the sun have no name.
I have nothing to offer.


now, i seem to understand you!

if you have 'nothing' to offer, i will give it back to you!

me too!

the thing ive noticed about faith in Buddhism is that its like praying, but your prayers are answered in a direct manner. i guess this is the power of technique. faith, in buddhism almost always becomes certainty.

where is skill,
when there is not a thing. anywhere.
to begin with theres faith in emptiness,
then later you can see it directly.
not a thing. anywhere.

its totally normal.

isolation? listen to the rocks,
what are the trees saying,
what is the sound of blue sky.
its one thing only, it is not a thing.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: Faith

Postby Will » Sat May 08, 2010 6:13 pm

Astus wrote:An interesting read: On the Meaning of “Faith (信)” in Early Chan School (PDF) by Munsun Kang (Ven. Hyewon)


An excellent paper; thanks Astus.

Here is a snip from it:

The general idea of ‘faith’ in the fundamental Buddhism is seen in Pali saddha, and in Sanskrit sraddha. Here saddha is understood not as a religious faith but as one involving conviction. Faith is a factor of purifying mind and has profound philosophical implications. Faith means the understanding and assurance of the Four Noble Truths; the worship and reverence of the Buddha’s character and teachings; a sincere decision to practice the Buddha’s teaching; and the realization of the human morality or ethics
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: Faith

Postby White Lotus » Sun May 09, 2010 4:48 pm

:namaste: Noble Will,

Faith is a factor of purifying mind and has profound philosophical implications.


can you purify emptiness? normal mind is absolutely empty. if you see this and you see that your nature is no different from the emptiness of breathing, or the emptiness of a mind without thought... its like looking for an ox that is already in the stable. some will ask... whats the point. ultimately buddhism is seeing into reality and what is alreay there... nothing/emptiness. its finding that you already have it.

with respect, White Lotus.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: Truths of the Will

Postby Will » Sat May 15, 2010 4:03 am

This article on faith, by a Bhikkhu, is too good to ignore just because this is a Mahayana thread.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ening.html
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: Faith

Postby Will » Sat May 15, 2010 8:43 pm

From Avatamsaka Sutra, ch. 1:

This state of the Buddha is inconceivable,
Unfathomable by any ordinary beings.
He pervasively inspires faith and understanding.
His profuse and joyous aspirations are unending.

If sentient beings are able to accept the Dharma,
The Buddha’s awesome spiritual strength will guide them,
Letting them constantly behold the Buddhas before them.
Bodhisattva Celestial King Ocean of Adornments thus perceives.
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: Faith

Postby White Lotus » Sun May 16, 2010 6:17 pm

:namaste: Noble Will,
This state of the Buddha is inconceivable,
Unfathomable by any ordinary beings.


faith in a process and method of becoming, when we already are?

I have begun Will, to question whether i know anything other than the fact that its raining outside. i know two monks, and affectionately call them Bill and Ben, they say that even 'this', just will not do, its what it points to that matters and even that is not sufficient. so weve swept away emptiness, nothingness and now 'this/that'. the buddhas teaching is indeed inconceivable.
im left with something? or am i? darned if i know what it is.
how about you? i really wonder whether theres anything useful i can say on these threads, but i will continue because its fun, and im bound to learn something useful.

best wishes, White Lotus.

what on earth is next?
just have another cup of tea?
too much tea killed the cat.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: Faith

Postby Will » Sun May 16, 2010 6:38 pm

White Lotus,
Whether we learn something of use to us, or of use to another that we pass on to them, the effort to gain & share wisdom is part of the conditions that lead to Buddhahood.

The Path to Buddhahood is our mind transformed & uplifted gradually. So do not be surprised or disappointed in the dull, small seeds one notes here and there. With the right conditions (which we provide) a dull seed will transform into a tree rich with blossoms & fruit.

Just cultivate.
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: Faith

Postby White Lotus » Tue May 18, 2010 5:20 pm

:namaste: Thanks Will.

a small seed contains within it the primordial tree,
brown and shrivelled, so small. with the right conditions
it reaches out and becomes
something glorious.

i love trees.

best wishes, White Lotus.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: Faith

Postby Will » Fri May 21, 2010 2:34 pm

The Blessed Buddha once said:

Even though a disciple of the Noble Ones lives off lumps of alms food and
wears rag-robes, still, because he is endowed with four qualities, then he is freed
from hell, freed from the animal womb, freed from the realm of hungry ghosts,
freed from all the planes of pain & deprivation, the bad and low destinations.

And what are the four? There is the case where the disciple of the Noble Ones is
endowed with verified faith, confidence & conviction in the Awakened Buddha like
this: Worthy, honourable and perfectly self-Enlightened is the Buddha! Fully
consummated in knowledge and behaviour, totally transcended, expert in all these
dimensions, knower of all worlds, unsurpassable trainer of those who can be tamed,
both teacher and guide of gods as well as of humans, blessed, exalted, awakened
and enlightened is the Buddha !!!

He/she is endowed with verified faith, confidence & conviction in the Dhamma like
this: Perfectly formulated is this Buddha-Dhamma, visible right here and now,
immediately effective, timeless, inviting each and everyone to come and see for
themselves, inspect, examine and verify. Leading each and everyone through
progress towards perfection. Directly observable, experiencable and realizable
by each intelligence...

He/she is endowed with verified faith, confidence & conviction in the Noble Sangha
like this: Perfectly training is this Noble Sangha community of the Buddha's Noble
disciples: Training the right way, the true way, the good way, the direct way!
Therefore do these 8 kinds of individuals, the four Noble pairs, deserve both gifts,
grants sacrifice, offerings, hospitality and reverential salutation even with joined
palms, since this Noble Sangha community of the Buddha's Noble disciples, is an
unsurpassable and forever unsurpassed field of merit, in this world, for this world,
to honour, respect, support, give to and protect.

He/she is endowed with long-term clean morality, which are dear to the Noble Ones:
Moral purity that is untorn, unbroken, unspotted, and impeccable, liberating, praised
by the wise, immaculate, and leading to concentration. SN 55.1
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: Faith

Postby muni » Thu Oct 21, 2010 12:43 pm

Will wrote:Faith as used in Buddhism is not the blind belief of other religions; but it is a needed factor in our attitude, so it is very important. Here is one sample from the Avatamsaka Sutra, ch. 22:

I. The Treasury of Belief

“Disciples of the Buddha, what is the Bodhisattva Mahasattvas’ Treasury of Belief?”

“These Bodhisattvas believe that all Dharmas are empty. They believe that all Dharmas are without an appearance. They believe that all Dharmas are wishless. They believe that all Dharmas are without creation. They believe that all Dharmas are without distinctions. They believe that all Dharmas are without reliance. They believe that all Dharmas are not able to be measured. They believe that all Dharmas are Unsurpassed. They believe that all Dharmas are difficult to transcend. They believe that all Dharmas are without production.”

“If Bodhisattvas can accord with all Dharmas in this way, then after they give rise to pure belief, when they hear that all Buddhadharmas are inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that all Buddhas are inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the realm of living beings is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the Dharma Realm is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the realm of empty space is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the realm of Nirvana is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid.”

“When they hear that the past is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the future is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that the present is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid. When they hear that entering every kalpa is inconceivable, their minds are not afraid.”

“Why not? These Bodhisattvas, residing in the places of Buddhas, have thoroughly solid faith. They know that the Buddhas’ wisdom is boundless and inexhaustible. In each and every one of the limitless worlds of the ten directions, there are limitless Buddhas who have already attained, are now attaining, or will attain Anuttarasamyaksambodhi. They have already come into the world, are now coming into the world, or will come into the world. They have already entered Nirvana, are now entering Nirvana, or will enter Nirvana. The wisdom of these Buddhas does not increase, does not decrease; is not produced, is not destroyed; does not progress, does not retreat; is not near, is not far; is without knowing and without rejecting.”

“These Bodhisattvas enter into the Buddhas’ wisdom and accomplish boundless, inexhaustible belief. After they attain this belief, their minds do not retreat. Their minds do not become scattered or confused. They are indestructible and undefiled. They always have a foundation. They accord with sages, and dwell in the household of the Thus Come Ones.”

“They protect the seed nature of all Buddhas. They increase the faith and understanding of all Bodhisattvas. They comply with all Thus Come Ones’ good roots, and they give rise to the expedients of all Buddhas.”

“This is called the Bodhisattva Mahasattvas’ Treasury of Belief.”

“When Bodhisattvas dwell in this Treasury of Belief, they can hear and uphold all the Buddhadharma, speak it for living beings, and enable them to become enlightened


One telling not to have any faith, can this be a subtle trap in having faith in own concepts and their characteristics. Blind faith.
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Re: Faith

Postby Individual » Thu Oct 21, 2010 2:27 pm

I think the word "confidence" is a clearer translation than faith, because of the western connotations of faith with blindly accepting dogmatism.

If you have confidence in the Buddha, you accept his teachings as true, but not based on dogmatism or fundamentalism.

Also, this isn't the only kind of saddha. Saddha should be applied inwardly, where it becomes self-esteem, self-confidence -- like pride, but tempered by humility, so that there is a well of energy to carry out Right Action but one doesn't get carried away with oneself and become arrogant.
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Re: Faith

Postby ground » Fri Oct 22, 2010 3:07 am

Taken from Lamrim Ch.

"Faith is the prerequisite of all good qualities -
"A procreator of them, like a mother
"Who then protects and increases them.
"It clears away doubts, frees you from the four rivers [ignorance, attachment, craving, and wrong views],
"And establishes you in the prosperous city of happiness and goodness.
"Faith cuts through gloom and clarifies the mind.
"It eliminates pride and is the root of respect.
"It is a jewel and a treasure.
"Like hands, it is the basis of gathering virtue.
"It is the best of feet for going to liberation.
Ratnolka-dharani

"Virtues will not arise
"In people who have no faith,
"Just as green sprouts do not grow
"From seeds scorched by fire.
Dasa-dharmaka-sutra


kind regards
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Re: Faith

Postby Will » Fri Oct 22, 2010 3:47 am

muni: One telling not to have any faith, can this be a subtle trap in having faith in own concepts and their characteristics? Blind faith.


Good insight, we are often ready and eager to believe & have faith in our own views & understandings, even if we are ignorant of vast areas of Dharma, have no guru to test our "insights" and our practice is feeble to non-existent.

But to have faith in words of a Buddha or bodhisattva or guru - OH NO! that is unthinking slavery to tradition.
Last edited by Will on Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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: Faith

Postby muni » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:09 am

Will wrote:But to have faith in words of a Buddha or bodhisattva or guru - OH NO! that is unthinking slavery to tradition.


Many are caught by own controlable comforts and understanding in own preferences, while shooting those who follow an offered light by a master to see "own light" without any preferences and no any side-clinging but completely openeness. Than discrimination of own obscurations and how all just is, gets a chance to reveal itself.

All words I can understand through clinging to my ideas:

"You are the Light itself
Rely on yourself
Do not rely on others.
The Dharma is the Light
Rely on the Dharma
Do not rely on anything other than the Dharma".

Homage to all masters, the guiding dharma.
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