Compassion metaphor

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Compassion metaphor

Postby Aemilius » Tue May 04, 2010 1:04 pm

Why do I always think that it is revealing of tibetans that they can only speak of all beings as like "mothers"? This comparison of all beings is found in Theravada scriptures, in Lankavatara sutra and in Abhisamayalankara of Maitreya, but it includes:" Fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, relatives, friends and kin." Is there some unconscious factor in the tibetan psyche that is responsible for this unfortunate omission ??
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Tue May 04, 2010 8:14 pm

I dunno but I was always taught by several teachers to practice by using people who you really love and have huge affection for.
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby Will » Tue May 04, 2010 10:12 pm

Aemilius wrote:Why do I always think that it is revealing of tibetans that they can only speak of all beings as like "mothers"? This comparison of all beings is found in Theravada scriptures, in Lankavatara sutra and in Abhisamayalankara of Maitreya, but it includes:" Fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, relatives, friends and kin." Is there some unconscious factor in the tibetan psyche that is responsible for this unfortunate omission ??


Generally speaking, since women bear the children, they have the most affection for them. Fathers & siblings etc. do not have the intensity of compassion that mothers do. Nothing particularly Tibetan about it.
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: Compassion metaphor

Postby Ngawang Drolma » Wed May 05, 2010 3:14 am

Because our mothers gave us life.

:namaste:
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby Aemilius » Thu May 06, 2010 6:04 am

There are several points to consider. In the existing Sutra passages Buddha doesn't say that "all beings have been our mothers", rather he says: "It is difficult to find a being on earth that has not been in a past life our father, mother, brother, sister or other close relative."
Then there is the immensity of time that is necessary for this statement. If you consider it in terms of evolution, you have to consider that the evolution (and final destruction) of species has occurred thousands of times, etc... up to millions of times, uncountable number of times.
If you manage to comprehend the immensity time and the number of rebirths that is involved, it seems quite absurd that it would then suddenly stop with any kind of simple method!!
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby Indrajala » Thu May 06, 2010 1:16 pm

It was probably just a literary expression that became so commonly used that to use anything else in such contexts would sound awkward and out of place.
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby Aemilius » Thu May 06, 2010 2:26 pm

Probably the great compassion precepts were part of the original mahayana, which was transmitted to Indonesia ( and elsewere??). In the course of centuries they disappeared in India, and thus we find in the life story of Dipankara Srijnana Atisha that he takes a dangerous seatrip to Indonesia in order to find these lost precepts. He then returns with these precious teachings on great compassion, and so on...
I don't know what is the origin and history for Asanga's teachings of this same theme, great compassion. Were they hidden from Atisha? -or something else that made them unavailable ? -or were they just different ? How did Atisha know that they existed ???
It seems certain that the teaching of great compassion was not recorded in sutras in its entirety, but it existed in a more complete form as oral explanations.
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby muni » Sun May 09, 2010 10:52 am

http://www.fpmt.org/education/lop/pdf/A ... t%20km.pdf

That metaphor; helpful to see all as very precious, like obviously for many a mom is, that reduces the coarse thinking and makes the wall of duality less solid till a fortunate one then see the illusion of the wall when warm heart is in wisdom. Then spontanity needs no description.

P.S Don't breath my air.
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Re: Compassion metaphor

Postby Aemilius » Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:57 am

muni wrote:http://www.fpmt.org/education/lop/pdf/Atisha%20bio%20shrt%20km.pdf

That metaphor; helpful to see all as very precious, like obviously for many a mom is, that reduces the coarse thinking and makes the wall of duality less solid till a fortunate one then see the illusion of the wall when warm heart is in wisdom. Then spontanity needs no description.

P.S Don't breath my air.


The Atisha's life story is good, some versions don't mention that he went to Indonesia.
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